No Arc de Trump (Yet), But Perhaps a French-Inspired Military Parade

Mr Hulot a former reporter and activist is the most popular member of President Macron’s government

Mr Hulot a former reporter and activist is the most popular member of President Macron’s governmentFRANCOIS MORI AP

Trump has previously spoken of his intention for a massive show of U.S. strength in a ground military parade and a 18 January meeting has reportedly set the wheels in motion, the Washington Post said on Wednesday.

The Washington Post, which broke news of the preparations Tuesday, quoted an official as saying Trump called for the parade with memories of Bastille Day, which he observed a year ago in a visit with French President Emmanuel Macron, in mind.

"The marching orders were: I want a parade like the one in France", one military official told The Washington Post, which broke the story.

Donald Trump has long claimed that he is a big supporter of the United States Military, but he appears to be taking his admiration to another level.

A White House official familiar with the planning described the discussions as "brainstorming" and said nothing was settled.

Others pointed to expenses - shipping military hardware and the fact that Washington's asphalt roads might not withstand the weight of the 70-ton M1 Abram main battle tanks.

"We are aware of the request and are in the process of determining specific details", it said in a statement.

Mayor Muriel Bowser's communications director, Anu Rangappa, told Washingtonian that the mayor's office will have "more to say when formal outreach begins", but until then, "we do know that just like the wall, he will have to pay for it".

Mattis is briefing reporters at the White House. He also seems unconcerned of the sort of message a parade of tanks, guns and other military paraphernalia through the Washington streets sends to the rest of the world that will, most definitely, be watching. "We're going to have to try to top it", he told Macron.

"It's really a waste of money, and I think everyone should be offended by his need to always be showy... it's not our style, it's not the way we do business".

The hermit kingdom recently labelled the Republican firebrand a "harasser of the peace" following reports that Donald Trump will continue military drills around the peninsula after the upcoming Olympic Games end. A second person added: "It is an egregious display of megalomaniacal ego and sociopathic arrogance".

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) made it clear that he found Trump's demand for a grand military parade to be something straight out of the Soviet Union and un-American.

Some said they were concerned it was a display of Trump's "authoritarian tendencies" without actually taking the military's needs into consideration. It's perhaps the one country most closely associated with large-scale military parades, and its leader just so happens to be engaging in an escalating battle of words with Trump.

Bednarek said that Americans "do not want to come across as doing one-upmanship of the North Koreans or the Russians or the Chinese".

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