Trump Says Tanks Will Be Part of July 4th Celebration in Washington

Clay Curtis
July 2, 2019

White House and administration officials have tried to calm those concerns by stressing that Trump plans to deliver a patriotic speech at the Lincoln Memorial on Thursday during his "Salute to America" event that is billed as honouring the US armed forces.

In addition to the flyovers by the Blue Angels, and according to media reports a plane that serves as Air Force One, the Washington Post reports that Trump requested tanks or other armored vehicles be part of the festivities.

Two M1A1 Abrams tanks and two Bradley Fighting Vehicles will be on display as part of Trump's "Salute to America" event, according to a USA official who spoke on condition of anonymity because details of the exhibits have not been made public.

The Associated Press on Monday spotted at least two M1A1 Abrams tanks and two of the Army's Bradley Fighting Vehicles transiting through the southeastern rail yard in Washington, D.C. CNN reported that a "small number" of M1 Abrams tanks would be included in the parade in some capacity, possibly for static display.

Two M1A1 Abrams tanks and two Bradley Fighting Vehicles will be on display as part of Mr Trump's Salute to America event, according to a United States official. "Incredible Flyovers & biggest ever Fireworks!"

"We have said it before, and we'll say it again: Tanks, but no tanks", the City Council tweeted.

Trump's "Salute to America" will now feature not one but two fireworks displays, which reportedly are being donated by the fireworks companies, but taxpayers will pick up the tab for the rest of his massive "salute".

The protests by Code Pink and any other protest-related activities coinciding with the Fourth is not significant enough to cause extra concern, D.C. Police Department officials said at the conference Friday.

President Donald Trump, joined by Vice President Mike Pence, left, and Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar, right, speaks during a signing ceremony in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, Monday, July 1, 2019.

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That plan eventually was scuttled, partly because of cost, though Trump apparently held on to the idea.

US President Donald Trump (L) and his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron applaud as they watch the annual Bastille Day military parade on the Champs-Elysees avenue in Paris on July 14, 2017.

The Democratic-controlled council also posted guidance from the Defence Department about a veterans' event in November previous year, specifying that "no tanks" should be used in order to "avoid damage to local infrastructure".

The Interior Department failed to respond to a June 18 letter from some Democrats on the committee about how it would fund the president's celebration.

The event will be open to the public free of charge, apart from a ticketed area for VIPs in front of the Lincoln Memorial.

Critics of Mr Trump said his involvement in 4 July amounts to a partisan takeover of a national holiday.

White House adviser Kellyanne Conway told reporters the president's Independence Day remarks would pay tribute to "how wonderful this country is".

It is not clear how much the parade will cost. That will require additional security from the Secret Service and National Park Service.

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