The Pentagon, perhaps bristling at being constantly left out of the loop when it comes to major policy decisions, publicly embarrassed the president by debunking the excuse he offered on Friday for the abrupt cancellation of his widely-panned military parade that he had planned for Veterans’ Day.
A spokesman for the Department of Defense announced on Monday that “the president was not briefed by any member of the Department of Defense on any cost associated with the parade,” which flies in the face of Trump’s Friday morning tweet in which he raged about the cost of the planned parade — a staggering $92 million — and tried to blame local Washington D.C. politicians for his decision.
The local politicians who run Washington, D.C. (poorly) know a windfall when they see it. When asked to give us a price for holding a great celebratory military parade, they wanted a number so ridiculously high that I cancelled it. Never let someone hold you up! I will instead…
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 17, 2018
Which means that Trump was convinced by his own staff to cancel the parade and didn’t even bother to consider how much it would cost one way or another; an unsurprising revelation, considering how absurdly cavalier that he and his cabinet have been with their use of taxpayer funds.
It goes without saying that it is highly unusual for the Pentagon to be contradicting the White House, especially on such a unique matter.
Military parades in the United States are usually used to commemorate the ends of wars, which America has not done for over twenty years. The sight of tanks rumbling down the National Mall in honor of Donald Trump might be a dream of his, but it’s an abhorrent thought to the rest of us.
The president’s consistent refusal to follow proper channels and brief anybody in his administration before unilaterally doing whatever he pleases is a constant headache to everyone involved, and it’s a telling sign that the Pentagon is starting to push back in irritation.
We can all breathe a sigh of relief knowing that we’ll be free of this obscene display of militarism and instead be able to spend Veterans’ Day in quiet contemplation of the appalling human toll from our endless overseas wars and how we owe it to our veterans to reconsider a failed foreign policy that has accomplished little in fifteen years but created more traumatized veterans and squandered countless billions of taxpayer dollars.
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