President Donald Trump’s proposed military parade has a potential date and location: Veterans Day in Washington.
But there’s still the question of how it will be paid for.
“When we talk about the options — the composition, the theme, the date, the location, the associated costs — all those are being looked at as part of the options that are being created,” said Pentagon spokesman Army Col. Rob Manning. “The funding stream is a line that they [parade planners] would have to provide details on.”
No money was allocated for a parade in the fiscal 2019 budget, and none was previously identified in the fiscal 2018 budget, which ends Sept. 30, six weeks before the planned parade date.
Over the weekend Trump told Fox News that “we’ll see if we can do it [a parade] at a reasonable cost, and if we can’t, we won’t do it.”
The White House budget office has estimated that the parade options Trump is considering would cost between $10 million and $30 million.
“But the generals would love to do it, I can tell you, and so would I,” Trump said on Fox News.
The president got the idea for a parade after attending France’s Bastille Day celebrations last year.
On Monday Pentagon reporters asked which generals had indicated they would want a parade; Manning said he did not know.
“I don’t know what specific generals told him that,” Manning said. “But again, the president directed the parade to show his appreciation for the military and to honor service members.”
The Pentagon has received a memo from Trump’s national security adviser, Army Lt, Gen. H.R. McMaster, providing guidance on parade planning, Manning said.
The Army is the executive agent in charge of planning the parade, DoD previously announced.
Tara Copp is the Pentagon Bureau Chief for Military Times and author of the award-winning military nonfiction "The Warbird: Three Heroes. Two Wars. One Story."