"Last week, I approved a mission over New York. I take responsibility for that decision," he said. "While federal authorities took the proper steps to notify state and local authorities in New York and New Jersey, it's clear that the mission created confusion and disruption."The president is said to be furious. No shite! The first asked question should be why? Who was the beneficiary of a photo-op and why did it require a low pass of Manhattan? We go to the New York Times for more, and get.. nothing. On to the WaPo! Here's the headline, "low flying planes panic locals". Low flying planes--yeah, just backup Air Force One and an F-16. For all we know reading the headline it was a couple of Piper Cubs.
People reported seeing the plane circle over the Upper New York Bay near the Statue of Liberty before it flew up the Hudson River. It was accompanied by two F-16s.
If this was anything short of a preparedness drill that required no foreknowledge (testing response, etc) it was ridiculous and a colossal waste of jet fuel. Especially since Obama has recently announced a program for rank and file federal employees to suggest more efficient ways of doing the government's business. Suggestion number one--stop making practice strafing runs on New York with Air Force One!
As to the secrecy, not surprising considering it was a presidential move and they are not telegraphed. Imagine the bad PR if an Air Force One look-alike started taking SAMs over the Statue of Liberty (by ex-military right wing man-causers, of course!). A nice coup for Jihad, Inc.
But now they've got something almost as good--a gift-wrapped video of people screaming and panicking like on 9/11 over the sight of our own presidential aircraft. Hey, come to think of it that sounds like a good opening for a GOP commercial in 2012...
The New York Times WAS on the case, they simply buried the story in the "NY/Region" section at the bottom of their page. Turns out to be an Air Force photo op, or that's the story. Not sure why they couldn't have notified the public since it's not every day one gets a chance to see Air Force One flying low similar to an air show. And finally, it looks like the Mayor's aides have some splainin' to do. There will no doubt be more in-depth info coming out in the aviation webzines later today and tomorrow..
This story certainly isn't as important as the flu crisis, or the government taking over auto companies, or Senator Specter coming out of the political closet, but it's probably more interesting. Deep in the bowels of the internet conspiracy theories are beginning to flow (which normally occurs when the powers that be ignore and obfuscate), one being that the fighter escort was a Red Tail from the Alabama National Guard. Naturally, through forms of tinfoil magic, they are making the link to the upcoming George Lucas movie "Red Tails" (which sounds pretty neat), which may or may not have any validity.
But I did receive a rather strange, unsolicited glossy foldout in the mail a few weeks ago. It had a beautiful shot of a P51 Mustang with some Tuskegee pilots in the foreground, and a foldout War Bonds poster inside. There was no mention of who sent it or any sponsors whatsoever.