Why We Are Organizing to Stop Trump's Military Parade
August 9, 2018 No Trump Parade & Courtney Kube / NBC News
At a time when the US military budget is growing, now constituting 57% of our federal discretionary spending, programs for domestic needs such as food, education, housing and health care are being cut and US militarization is infecting most of the countries of the world, our schools and our communities, Donald Trump plans to spend more than $30 million dollars to parade tanks and weapons through the streets of Washington, DC.
Why We Are Organizing to Stop the Military Parade Join a broad coalition of peace and justice groups
to stop the parade before it happens
If it does happen, join us in protest! No Trump Parade
Celebrate Peace: Armistice Day 100th Anniversary
(August 9, 2018) -- At a time when the United States' military budget is growing, now constituting 57% of our federal discretionary spending, programs for domestic needs such as food, education, housing and health care are being cut and US militarization is infecting most of the countries of the world, our schools and our communities, President Trump plans to spend more than $30 million dollars to parade tanks and weapons through the streets of Washington, DC on Veteran's Day weekend this November.
While it is President Trump who is calling for the parade, both major political parties are responsible for escalating US militarization and aggression throughout the world. Members of Congress voted nearly unanimously to give the Pentagon $70 billion more than requested in the current budget and are complicit in antagonizing Russia, North Korea, Iran and Venezuela.
Many groups are organizing to stop this parade, reclaim Veteran's Day as Armistice Day and call for demilitarization and investment in programs that protect and support our communities in positive ways and heal the climate crisis and environmental degradation.
We are joining together to collaborate on making the response to President Trump's military parade bigger than the parade itself. We will show up in Washington, DC or wherever the parade might be held or take action in our local communities. If the parade is cancelled, we will still take action to make our demands heard.
If you believe that the glorification of war is obscene, if you believe it's time to stop celebrating war and start working for peace, if you believe that our public dollars should be invested in positive ways that lift up communities and protect the planet, if you believe that militarized and racist police have no place in our schools and communities, if you believe the United States must become a cooperative member of the global community instead of the world's greatest purveyor of violence, sign up to join us.
Here are our demands: * Stop the glorification of war. * Return Veteran's Day to Armistice Day, a day to celebrate peace. * Divest from the war machine and use public dollars for human needs and protection of the planet. * End the wars at home and abroad.
SIGN ON TO THE OPEN LETTER: The letter below will be published as an open letter and sent to members of Congress and the Washington DC City Council urging them to stop the military parade. All organizations are invited to sign on to the letter. ACTION:Click here to sign on.
DIVEST FROM WAR, INVEST IN PEACE, RECLAIM ARMISTICE DAY
President Trump has ordered a military parade to be held in Washington, DC to showcase "the price of freedom" on November 10, 2018. This glorification of war, which will cost millions of dollars, comes at a time when the United States is provoking more war and the military industrial complex is consuming a growing proportion, now almost two thirds, of our discretionary spending.
Militarism has invaded our communities where police treat residents as "the enemy," demonstrators are met with tanks and recruiters are allowed into schools. Militarism has also infected our national psyche by normalizing violence as armed men shoot and kill in our schools, stores and offices.
We reject this gross display of power and violence. We call on you to stop the military parade.
We have had enough of war and are ready to put an end to it. Its basic purposes are to enrich the weapons-makers and to secure cheap resources and labor for global corporations.
War is killing hundreds of thousands of civilians and displacing millions of people. US aggression is causing increased insecurity and an assault on our freedom as we must now submit to searches before we can travel or enter buildings that once had open doors.
The cost of war is great. Our infrastructure is failing. Poverty is growing, and the social safety net is disintegrating. Our children are hungry, our families are unhoused and our air, land and water are polluted. Our veterans are in such despair that 22 of them, mostly young veterans, are committing suicide each day.
We, groups who advocate for peace and justice, are organizing a celebration of peace in Washington, DC and across the country from November 9 to 11. On the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day, we will march in a solemn procession to reclaim this day as a time to remember the cost of war and the preciousness of peace.
We urge you now to do all in your power to stop the military parade on November 10. The vast majority of people in the US and around the world crave peace. If the parade goes forward, we will mobilize thousands of people on that day to protest it.
It is time to divest from the wars at home and abroad and invest in peace.
Signatories Brandywine Peace Community
Community Organizing Center for Mother Earth
Consistent Life Network
Environmentalists Against War
Fellowship of Reconciliation (FOR-USA)
Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space
Greater Boston United for Justice with Peace Coalition
Green Party, Montgomery County, Maryland
Green Party of New Jersey
Green Party US Peace Action Committee
Green Women Rising
InterReligious Task Force on Central America & Colombia
Little Falls Occ U Pie
Military Families Speak Out
Military Law Task Force of the National Lawyers Guild
New Jersey State Industrial Union Council
New Progressive Alliance
NW Alliance for Alternative Media and Education
Nuclear Age Peace Foundation
Pax Christi Lansing
Pax Christi Michigan
Pax Christi Seed Planters
Public Intellectuals for Social and Spare Change
Show Up! America
The Oracle Institute (Home of the Peace Pentagon)
The Peace Resource
Tree of Trust
United National Antiwar Coalition (UNAC)
US Peace Council
Veterans Against Parade (VAP)
Veterans for Peace
Veterans For Peace, Greater Seattle Chapter 92
Veterans For Peace, Chapter 099
Veterans For Peace, Ch. 132, Corvallis, OR
Veterans For Peace, Chapter 168
Veterans for Peace Joan Duffy Chapter, Santa Fe, NM
Veterans Peace March
Viet Nam Veterans Against the War/Old School Sappers
Vietnam Veterans Against the War Legacy Trust
Women’s Institute for Freedom of the Press
Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, Corvallis OR branch
World Beyond War
"There is only one person who wants this parade,"
a senior US official told NBC News, referring to Trump.
WASHINGTON (June 28, 2018) -- Four months after President Donald Trump directed the Defense Department to organize a military parade, planning is just beginning but no budget has been assigned yet.
Pentagon officials told NBC News that they will be able to pull off the extravaganza, but the lack of momentum is notable -- and possibly indicative of low enthusiasm for the event outside the Oval Office.
"There is only one person who wants this parade," a senior US official said, referring to Trump. Even some White House officials are uninterested in planning the parade and are dragging their feet, according to a senior administration official.
Trump got the idea for the parade while viewing France's Bastille Day Parade last summer. Naturally, he wanted it to be really big-league. "We're going to have to try to top it," he later told French President Emmanuel Macron.
By January, Trump was floating the idea with military leaders and in late February, he made it official with a memo to Defense Secretary James Mattis.
A March memo laid out the skeleton of a plan: a parade from the White House to the Capitol to include only wheeled vehicles (because tanks could damage the streets), capped by a big display of air power and vintage aircraft, with themes including veterans, women in the military and medal of honor recipients.
After that, three months went by with no major planning. With so many more pressing issues, the parade just was not a high priority for the military, a senior defense official said.
But in the last week or so, the event has gotten some attention. Officials have now recommended that the route begin at the Capitol, pass the White House and end at the National Mall, and the date has moved up a day to Nov. 10, from Nov. 11. A Joint Chiefs of Staff team is drafting a planning order for US Northern Command, which will then dig into the specifics.
That includes bringing in the US Military District of Washington -- an Army command that executes state funerals for former presidents, inaugurations and other major events -- to be the lead. The command is typically reimbursed by the Pentagon, but there's no pot of money earmarked for the military parade right now.
Defense can pay for some things out of its training budget by assigning a pilot who needs flight hours to a fly-by. Using vehicles from nearby bases and troops stationed in the capital region doesn't come with a high price-tag.
But there are other parade costs that the Pentagon isn't responsible for -- from Secret Service and police overtime to renting, constructing and taking down risers, stands and barriers -- and there's no White House budget for the event either.
A spokesperson for the National Security Council said, "The Department of Defense will provide options to the White House for a decision."
Some Washington lawmakers have raised concerns about the cost of a parade, with Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., calling it a "fantastic waste of money to amuse the president." And some analysts have said that without an important military victory to justify the parade, it smacked of North Korean-style posturing.
"There’s no reason to do it aside from bolstering Trump’s ego," Thomas E. Ricks, a military historian and veteran national security reporter, told NBC News this year.
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