Trump hails $12.9 billion warship a ‘100,000-ton message to the world’

WASHINGTON—With praise and a blessing for the military, President Donald Trump helped hand over the USS Gerald R. Ford to the Navy on Saturday and said the state-of-the-art aircraft carrier will send a “100,000-ton message to the world” about America’s military might when it is ultimately deployed.

U.S. allies will rest easy, Trump said, but America’s enemies will “shake with fear” when they see the Ford cutting across the horizon.

The president, who is commander in chief of the U.S. armed forces, likened the $12.9 billion warship to “an incredible work of art” and boasted about the American labour that went into building a vessel that eventually will house thousands of sailors and crew members.

Trump’s participation in the ceremony also capped “Made in America” week at the White House, during which the president and administration officials sought to draw attention to the U.S. manufacturing industry.

“American steel and American hands have constructed this 100,000-ton message to the world,” Trump said of the Ford during a speech that praised the bravery and spirit of U.S. service members and referenced his desire for a buildup after years of spending restrictions.

 “American might is second to none and we’re getting bigger and better and stronger every day of my administration. That I can tell you,” Trump told thousands of service members and guests, including former defence secretaries Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld, and Govs. Terry McAuliffe of Virginia and Rick Snyder of Michigan, who were packed into the steamy hangar bay on the main deck.

 

“Wherever this vessel cuts through the horizon, our allies will rest easy and our enemies will shake with fear because everyone will know that America is coming, and America is coming strong,” Trump said.

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