Trump touts ‘brand new’ World War II-era tank display at Fourth of July celebration
“I’m going to be here and I’m going to say a few words and we’re going to have planes going overhead ― the best fighter jets in the world, and other planes, too,” he told reporters. “And we’re going to have some tanks stationed outside.”
Officials told The Washington Post, according to a story published earlier Monday, that the White House had requested Army vehicles for the celebration but that the service was scrambling to figure out what to send and how to get it to D.C.
“You’ve got to be pretty careful with the tanks, because the roads have a tendency not to like to carry heavy tanks,” he said. “So we have to put them in certain areas, but we have the brand new Sherman tanks and c”
The M4 Sherman, best known for its role in World War II, went out of service in 1957. The M1 Abrams came online in 1980.
“You know, we’re making a lot of new tanks right now,” Trump added. “We’re building a lot of new tanks in Lima, Ohio ― our great tank factory that people wanted to close down until I got elected and I stopped it from being closed down.”
Trump first floated the idea of tactical fighting vehicles on display in D.C. in summer 2017, after attending a Bastille Day parade in Paris, impressed by the procession of tanks down the Champs Elysees.
Concerns about heavy armored vehicle tracks tearing up Pennsylvania Avenue, among other issues, scuttled his original Veterans Day plan last August.
The estimated price tag came to more than $20 million.
Spokesmen for the Pentagon and the White House declined to comment on the types of vehicles on tap for Thursday’s event, as well as where they would be coming from and how much it would cost to transport them to and from D.C.