- President Donald Trump is pulling out all the stops for his big Fourth of July bash, which is expected to include everything from tanks to bombers to fighter aircraft.
- Trump tweeted Tuesday that this event will show off “the strongest and most advanced military in the world.”
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President Donald Trump is planning a huge Fourth of July blowout, and he is reportedly trying to bring everything from tanks to fighter jets to the nation’s capital for the event.
The president has long wanted his own massive military parade like those seen in other countries. He was particularly impressed by France’s Bastille Day celebration. “It was one of the greatest parades I’ve ever seen,” he said of the Paris parade. “We’re going to have to try to top it.” Trump tried to plan a military parade last year, but that fell through amid ballooning costs.
Some have been critical of the president’s event, saying that he’s politicizing a civic celebration for all Americans and that the US’s military parades are traditionally held only after wartime victories. But the president is going all out for the upcoming “A Salute to America” bash, which is expected to include a big fireworks display, a military parade, flyovers by military aircraft, and a presidential address.
“We have some incredible equipment, military equipment on display – brand new,” Trump said Monday. “We’re going to have a great Fourth of July in Washington, D.C. It will be like no other.”
Here’s all the military gear Trump is reportedly ordering into Washington for the event, the cost of which is unknown.
M1 Abrams tanks
“We’re gonna have some tanks stationed outside,” Trump said Monday.
There will be two M1 Abrams tanks on the National Mall as part of a static display involving other armoured vehicles, defence officials told CNN. The 60-ton main battle tank is one of the best in the world.
Bradley Fighting Vehicles
Two Bradley Fighting Vehicles, armoured troop transport vehicles with the ability to provide suppressing fire, will join the M1 Abrams tanks on the mall, CNN reports.
M88 Armoured Recovery Vehicle
The large M88 Recovery Vehicles are used to recover armoured vehicles on the battlefield. There will be one of these in the static display with the M1 Abrams main battle tanks and the Bradley Fighting Vehicles.
B-2 Spirit bomber
“We’re going to have planes flying overhead, the best fighter jets in the world and other planes too,” Trump revealed Monday.
For the event, Trump is bringing out America’s top stealth air assets, including, two defence officials told CNN, the powerful B-2 stealth bombers built to slip past enemy air defences to deliver devastating conventional and nuclear strikes.
The F-22 is a fifth-generation stealth jet that serves as America’s premier air superiority fighter. CNN reports that F-22s, together with the new F-35s, will participate in the “Salute to America” festivities.
F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters
The F-35, the most expensive weapons program in American military history, is a fifth-generation multi-purpose fighter rapidly emerging as an important symbol of American airpower.
Two Navy F-35Cs are expected to flyover the capital.
The Fourth of July celebration will feature a flyover by the Blue Angels, the Associated Press reported a few days ago. The famous demonstration team flies F/A-18 Hornets with iconic blue and yellow colour schemes.
F/A-18E Super Hornet
At least two of the highly-capable multirole fighters are expected to participate in the event, ABC News reports, citing multiple defence officials.
Two of the Marine Corps MV-22 Ospreys are expected to participate in the Independence Day activities, according to ABC News. The tiltrotor aircraft, which can carry up to 24 troops, is the main assault transport aircraft used by the Marines.
VC-25 (Air Force One)
Trump plans to have one of the VC-25 aircraft – the military version of the civilian Boeing 747 jetliner that’s capable of serving as an Air Force One presidential transport plane – flyover during the Fourth of July celebrations, The Washington Post reported last week.
VH-92 (Marine One)
The VH-92, the military version of the S-92, is expected to eventually serve as the new Marine One. This helicopter has not yet entered service, but it will, nonetheless, make an appearance this Thursday, according to ABC News.