Trump, like most authoritarian despots, wanted actual goddamn tanks rolling down the streets for his inauguration parade, because he's a goddamn tyrant. The Pentagon politely told him no for several reasons.
The military “may come marching down Pennsylvania Avenue,” Trump told the Washington Post in an interview published Wednesday. “That military may be flying over New York City and Washington, D.C., for parades. I mean, we’re going to be showing our military.”
Trump spoke about his vision of military parades in vague terms, suggesting it was something he might oversee in the future. But according to several sources involved in his inaugural preparations, Trump has endeavored to ensure that his first day as commander-in-chief is marked by an unusual display of heavy military equipment.
During the preparation for Friday’s transfer-of-power, a member of Trump’s transition team floated the idea of including tanks and missile launchers in the inaugural parade, a source involved in inaugural planning told The Huffington Post. “They were legit thinking Red Square/North Korea-style parade,” the source said, referring to massive military parades in Moscow and Pyongyang, typically seen as an aggressive display of muscle-flexing.
The military, which traditionally works closely with the presidential inaugural committee, shot down the request, the source said. Their reason was twofold. Some were concerned about the optics of having tanks and missile launchers rolling down Pennsylvania Avenue. But they also worried that the tanks, which often weigh over 100,000 pounds, would destroy the roads.
“I could absolutely see structural support being a reason [not to use tanks],” a Department of Defense official said. “D.C. is built on a swamp to begin with.”
Two things here: One, these are now the people in charge of the United States of America and its military, the strongest on the planet by an order of magnitude or so. Two, it wasn't Trump who immediately shot this idea down, like most actual human beings with souls would do. No, the request to roll tanks down Pennsylvania Avenue actually made it to the Pentagon.
By the way, Trump will get military flyovers. Lots of them. The last president to have flyovers as part of an inauguration? Truman, after being re-elected after the Allies won WWII. You know, the guy that nuked Japan twice.
We are in dire trouble from the word go.