Trump cancels military parade after Pentagon delay

Reuters Studio - August 17, 2018

President Donald Trump on Friday said he had cancelled his planned military parade scheduled for November and would instead visit Paris on Nov.

11 to commemorate Veterans Day.

Jonah Green has more.

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Trump cancels military parade after Pentagon delay

President Trump liked France's military parade so much, that he ordered one of his own.

SOUNDBITE (English) US PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: "We may do something like that on July fourth.... But following a report that the Pentagon was delaying the parade, Trump on Friday canceled it altogether.

Trump blaming the cost on local DC politicians, who "wanted a number so ridiculously high that I cancelled it." A U.S. official told Reuters the parade could cost more than $90 million, as estimate Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said he hasn't seen.

SOUNDBITE (English) US DEFENSE SECRETARY JIM MATTIS: "Whoever told you that is probably smoking something that is legal in my state (Washington), but not in most states, ok." Earlier this year, the White House budget chief said the parade would cost U.S. taxpayers between $10 and $30 million.

Critics say that when the Pentagon is struggling to cover the expenses of training, support and personnel, the government shouldn't be spending millions on an unnecessary display of troops and weapons.

The festivities would honor U.S. military veterans and commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of World War One.

But military parades in the United States are rare, and such displays in other countries are usually staged to celebrate victories in battle or showcase military might.

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