- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Acting Secretary of Defense Mark T. Esper and Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford Jr. will be leading a sizable delegation of top Pentagon officials who will stand with service members and their families at President Trump’s “Salute to America” on the Fourth of July, the Pentagon announced Wednesday.

The Defense Department said it has been given an additional 5,000 tickets to Mr. Trump’s “Salute to America” to distribute to its personnel.

Mr. Esper, the former secretary of the Army, has only been in his current job since June 24, succeeding previous acting Secretary Patrick M. Shanahan, who withdrew from consideration for the permanent post citing family issues. Mr. Trump has said he plans to nominate Mr. Esper for the post.



The Pentagon has kept a relatively low profile on the military-themed event, which has been largely organized by the White House and Interior Department. The Defense Department’s media office listed no public events for either Mr. Esper or Gen. Dunford Wednesday as intense preparations for the event proceeded.

Mr. Trump tweeted last week that U.S. military were “thrilled” to be included in this year’s Fourth of July festivities.

Also scheduled to attend, according to the Pentagon are James McPherson, currently performing the duties of the Under Secretary of the Army; incoming Vice Chief of Staff of the Army, LTG(P) Joseph M. Martin; and Richard V. Spencer, secretary of the Navy.

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