Published: Wed, September 20, 2017
Worldwide | By Sean Reid

Trump Wants A Grand Military Parade For The Fourth Of July

Trump Wants A Grand Military Parade For The Fourth Of July

During the Cold War, the practice was avoided as it was feared that it would look like the US was mimicking the Soviet Union. He said he was impressed by the military parade in central Paris in July, when he was visiting the French capital. If he follows through he'll get hammered by critics for militarism, particularly by linking military power to the patriotic impulses felt on July 4th, but nationalists will love it. America is in many ways a declining power, albeit not militarily; frankly, we probably *have* reached the stage of imperial insecurity where rolling an ICBM down Pennsylvania Avenue is needed for a national ego boost.

Defense Department officials reportedly denied a request from Trump's transition team to include heavy military vehicles in his inaugural parade from the Capitol to the White House. But we had a lot of planes going over, we had a lot of military might.

The US does not have a history of major military parades marching through its cities, except to celebrate wartime victories.

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But also, perhaps the military, at least, knows it's a little gauche to have such a martial parade celebrating its own awesomeness at a time when our troops are bogged down in a 16-year war in Afghanistan with no end in sight while also bombing, somewhat indiscriminately, Middle Eastern countries in the fight against ISIS, an act which has resulted in an uptick of civilian deaths this year?

The most benign reason for a procession is the one Trump wants to emulate, marking a national holiday a la France's Bastille Day. According to him, the two-hour procession of soldiers and military equipment was "a great thing for France and its spirit", and said he wanted to hold such a parade for the American people.

Trump hoped to have military vehicles in his Inauguration Day parade, but this plan never came to fruition. But Trump wasn't joking. We're going to have to try and top it. Indeed, historically the United States has scorned the large military parades in nations like North Korea as signs of a childish nation obsessed with its own sense of military might. How it would be funded remains a mystery, as well.

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