Published: Sat, July 15, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

Gilt, guns, flattery: Macron woos Trump as Europe's go-to

US troops wearing World War I helmets walk in the Bastille Day military parade.

Several highlights of the parade put the United States in the spotlight.

Trump's parting tweet showed a photo of the two men looking out over the famed Champs-Elysees, standing shoulder to shoulder during what the American described as a "magnificent #BastilleDay parade.".

Eight U.S. planes joined the parade, along with a detachment of 145 troops on the ground. The two are commemorating the 100th anniversary of the USA entry into World War I.

Trump made the comments to Macron during a visit to Les Invalides museum in Paris on Thursday, where the tomb of Napoleon is held.

President Donald Trump was the guest of honor at the parade, and French and American flags were prominent throughout.

"America and France will never be defeated or divided", Trump said, adding that it was his "high honour" to commemorate, on French soil, France's most historic day and the 100th anniversary of the entry of the United States into World War I.

He said the U.S. relationship with France is "stronger than ever" following his trip, which also saw the two leaders dine together with their wives Melania and Brigitte at the Eiffel Tower on Thursday night.

The Daesh group claimed responsibility, saying the attack was carried out by one of its "soldiers" - who was shot dead at the end of his rampage - though no direct link has been found.

Both the Champs-Elysees and the Place de la Concorde, with its golden-tipped obelisk, were emptied two hours before the parade.

Macron then flew to Nice, where a year ago, a Tunisian extremist rammed a 19-tonne truck through a crowd celebrating Bastille Day along the famous Promenade des Anglais hugging the Mediterranean.

The Nice attack wasn't the first to hit France, nor the last.

Fireworks were lighting up the Paris sky on Friday night near the Eiffel Tower, but they were banned in Nice.

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