The July 4 “Salute to America” parade featured the typical fireworks display but also included a massive amount of military hardware as the White House wanted to emphasize the U.S.’s military might.
While the military display of force has brought criticism among Democrats who say the parade will echo those of authoritarians and cost taxpayers upwards of $2.5 million, the president has repeatedly hyped the event.
“People are coming from far and wide to join us today and tonight for what is turning out to be one of the biggest celebrations in the history of our Country, SALUTE TO AMERICA, an all day event at the Lincoln Memorial, culminating with large scale flyovers of the most modern and advanced aircraft anywhere in the World,” he tweeted Thursday morning.
He followed that with this: “….and advanced aircraft anywhere in the World. Perhaps even Air Force One will do a low & loud sprint over the crowd. That will start at 6:00P.M., but be there early. Then, at 9:00 P.M., a great (to put it mildly) fireworks display. I will speak on behalf of our great Country!”
Here is a list of the military equipment attendees could see this July 4th as compiled by the Washington Examiner.
Two M1 Abrams tanks
The M1 Abrams tank has been a staple of the Army’s armor corps for decades. It carries machine guns of several different calibers and can weigh over 62 tons. The two will be on stationary display out of concern they could damage the street.
M2 Bradley Fighting Vehicle
Two Bradley Fighting Vehicles were seen Wednesday near the Lincoln Memorial, where Trump is scheduled to give a speech. They’ve been in service since 1981 and weigh just under 28 tons.
B-2 stealth bomber
One B-2 stealth bomber is scheduled to do a flyover of the parade. It is known most for its V shape and ability to avoid most radars.
F-35 Joint Strike Fighter
The F-35 is also expected to be featured. Various models have been created for different uses by different branches of the military.
The F-22, which was first introduced in 2005, specializes in shooting down enemy aircraft. It was first used in combat in 2014, when it was used to drop bombs on Syria in the fight against ISIS.
Introduced in 1984, the F/A-18 has emerged as the Navy’s premier fighter jet. It has been in use since 1986, when it was deployed for the Pentagon’s bombing campaign in Libya.
Marine One and Air Force One
The president’s personal aircrafts will both be featured at Thursday’s event, with Trump hinting that Air Force One may do a “low & loud sprint over the crowd.”