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Pentagon memo provides details on Trump's military parade: No tanks

by Phil McCausland /  / Updated 

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The Pentagon appears ready to fulfill President Donald Trump's dream of carrying out a military parade in Washington D.C., according to a guidance memo from the Office of the Secretary of Defense obtained by NBC News on Friday.

The event will include "no tanks," but it will play host to "a heavy air component at the end of the parade, to include older aircraft as available," the memo states. The route will be from the White House to the U.S. Capitol Building.

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As previously reported, the parade is to take place in November — on Veterans Day to be specific — and it "will focus on the contributions of our Veterans throughout the history of the U.S. Military, starting from the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812 to today, with an emphasis on the price of freedom," according to the memo.

The parade "will integrate with the annual D.C. Veteran's Day Parade," and will also "highlight the evolution of women Veterans formations in World War II to today's integrated formations," the memo states.

The cost of the parade, however, remains unclear.

Critics have largely panned the idea since Trump proposed it earlier this year, worrying that it would be a display of authoritarianism, carry a hefty price tag — tens of millions of dollars by some estimates — and damage the roads in Washington D.C.

The memo says only aircraft and "wheeled vehicles" will be used — no tanks — to "minimize damage to local infrastructure."

Aerial view of White House, Old Executive Office Building, Pennsylvania Avenue and the U.S. Capitol, in Washington, D.C.Carol M. Highsmith / Buyenlarge/Getty Images file

Last September, Trump shared how impressed he was by the Bastille Day celebrations in Paris, where he visited French President Emmanuel Macron and concluded "to a large extent, because of what I witnessed, we may do something like that on July 4th in Washington, down Pennsylvania Avenue."

And, Trump told the Washington Post in January 2017, he wants to put the military on display.

"Being a great president has to do with a lot of things, but one of them is being a great cheerleader for the country,” Trump said. “And we’re going to show the people as we build up our military, we’re going to display our military."

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