The American Legion said in a statement Thursday that money that will be spent on an upcoming military parade "would be better spent fully funding the Department of Veteran Affairs and giving our troops and their families the best care possible."
The statement came following a CNBC report by Amanda Macias, citing a defense official with firsthand knowledge, which estimated the parade would cost $92 million — $80 million more than initially estimated.
The parade, still in the planning stages, is scheduled for November 10, marking both the Veterans Day holiday and the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I.
According to the CNBC report, the parade in Washington, D.C. is expected to include approximately eight tanks and other armored vehicles such as Bradley Fighting Vehicles and Strykers, uniformed personnel, and flyovers from helicopters, fighters, transport aircraft, and historical planes.
President Donald Trump ordered the Pentagon to explore the idea of a military parade in Washington after returning from France in July 2017, where he attended a military parade in with French President Emmanuel Macron.
"We're going to have to try to top it," Trump said jokingly to Macron, during a meeting on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in September.
In the Legion statement, however, National Commander Denise Rohan cautioned that a parade at the current time would be premature since the U.S. still remains engaged in the war on terror (the last time a parade was held in Washington was to celebrate the end of the Gulf War in 1991).
“The American Legion appreciates that our President wants to show in a dramatic fashion our nation’s support for our troops," Rohan said. "However, until such time as we can celebrate victory in the War on Terrorism and bring our military home, we think the parade money would be better spent fully funding the Department of Veteran Affairs and giving our troops and their families the best care possible.”
Army Staff Sgt. Albert Leon Mampre, who served during World War II with the famed Easy Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division depicted in the HBO series 'Band of Brothers,' was laid to rest on June 15th, the Army announced
Mampre, who died on May 31 at 97 years old, was the last living medic from Easy Company, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. A number of soldiers assigned to his unit provided an honor guard for his funeral service.
NIEUWEGEIN, Netherlands (Reuters) - Three Russians and a Ukrainian will face murder charges for the 2014 downing of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over eastern Ukraine which killed 298 people, in a trial to start in the Netherlands next March, an investigation team said on Wednesday.
The suspects are likely to be tried in absentia, however, as the Netherlands has said Russia has not cooperated with the investigation and is not expected to hand anyone over.
"These suspects are seen to have played an important role in the death of 298 innocent civilians", said Dutch Chief Prosecutor Fred Westerbeke.
"Although they did not push the button themselves, we suspect them of close cooperation to get the (missile launcher) where it was, with the aim to shoot down an airplane."
A Navy SEAL sentenced to one year in prison for the death of Army Special Forces Staff Sgt. Logan Melgar is under investigation for allegedly flirting with Melgar's widow while using a false name and trying to persuade her that he and another SEAL accused of killing her husband were "really good guys," according to the Washington Post.
NAVAL BASE SAN DIEGO — The trial of Navy SEAL Chief Eddie Gallagher officially kicked off on Tuesday with the completion of jury selection, opening statements, and witness testimony indicating that drinking alcohol on the front lines of Mosul, Iraq in 2017 seemed to be a common occurrence for members of SEAL Team 7 Alpha Platoon.
Government prosecutors characterized Gallagher as a knife-wielding murderer who not only killed a wounded ISIS fighter but shot indiscriminately at innocent civilians, while the defense argued that those allegations were falsehoods spread by Gallagher's angry subordinates, with attorney Tim Parlatore telling the jury that "this trial is not about murder. It's about mutiny."