The Veterans Day military parade ordered by President Trump would cost about $92 million, U.S. officials said Thursday, citing preliminary estimates more than three times the price first suggested by the White House.
According to the officials, roughly $50 million would cover Pentagon costs for aircraft, equipment, personnel and other support for the November parade in Washington. The remainder would be borne by other agencies and largely involve security costs. The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss early planning estimates that have not yet been finalized or released publicly.
Officials said the plans have not yet been approved by Defense Secretary Jim Mattis.
The parade’s cost has become a politically charged issue, particularly after the Pentagon canceled a major military exercise planned for August with South Korea, in the wake of Trump’s summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Trump said the drills were provocative and that dumping them would save the United States “a tremendous amount of money.” The Pentagon later said the Korea drills would have cost $14 million.
Lt. Col. Jamie Davis, a Pentagon spokesman, would only say Thursday that Defense Department planning for the parade “continues and final details are still being developed.”
The parade is expected to include troops from all five armed services. It also is expected to involve a number of military aircraft flyovers.
Trump decided he wanted a military parade after he attended France’s Bastille Day celebration in the center of Paris last year.
— Associated Press
Authorities say human remains found at a New Mexico desert compound have been identified as those of a missing Georgia boy with severe disabilities.
The New Mexico Office of the Medical Investigator said Thursday that the remains were those of Abdul-ghani Wahhaj. The remains were found Aug. 6 after he vanished in December in Jonesboro, Ga.
Authorities say the boy’s father, Siraj Ibn Wahhaj, had told his wife he wanted to perform a ritual on the child, later said he was taking the boy to a park and didn’t return.
An arrest warrant was issued for the father. The search for the boy led authorities to the compound this month.
Wahhaj faces child abuse charges along with four other adults arrested at the compound.
— Associated Press