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Obama's Plane Buzzes New York City for Photo Op; Panics New Yorkers

Since it was Obama's 747 that did the buzzing to get photographs, the president would have had to approve it, right? Gabriel Mallor at Ace of Spades remarks that this is more proof of "Obama's extreme childishness and lack of regard for anyone other than his own self." Since Obama behaves as if 9/11 isn't a big deal anymore, maybe he thinks everyone else thinks it's no big deal, too. If that is what he thought, then hopefully today's little stunt and the ensuing panic put that misunderstanding to bed really fast.

Next question: who wanted the photos of New York City's lower Manhattan so badly that it warranted using the president's 747 and panicking New Yorkers to do it. The answer:

President Obama's White House was forced to issue an apology Monday after a photo opportunity gone wrong -- an Air Force 747 plane did a low flyover lower Manhattan, prompting terrified citizens to flee from their offices and high-profile accusations of government insensitivity.

White House Military Office director Louis Caldera issued a brief statement.

"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, its clear that the mission created confusion and disruption. I apologize and take responsibility for any distress that flight caused."

The panic started Monday morning when a backup 747 used as Air Force One flew by lower Manhattan with a fighter jet closely following, rattling windows and causing some limited evacuations.

The late afternoon statement came as New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg -- an Obama ally so far -- said he was outraged.

And rightly so. Check out this video that shows how people immediately thought another 9/11 was happening:

Update: What was all the panic for? The White House was updating its file photo. Unbelievable.


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Comments (49)

What a fricken dumbshit Oba... (Below threshold)
914:

What a fricken dumbshit Obama Hussein is.

And just HOW MUCH MONEY did... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

And just HOW MUCH MONEY did this photo op cost the US Taxpayer? Just wait until Al Gore finds out about this. Doesn't Team Barry care about global warming?

Do you really think Obama g... (Below threshold)

Do you really think Obama gets so into the details of what people in his administration are doing that he would personally have signed off on this? Gee, that is as bad as the lefties who blamed Bush personally for stuff others did... such as hanging up the 'Mission Accomplished' banner.

SteveIf Obama was ... (Below threshold)
914:

Steve

If Obama was not even into the details of this!! Airforce 1 taken for a joy ride, how the fuc can He be trusted to run anything?

some people have never hear... (Below threshold)

some people have never heard the word 'delegation'... leaving the details to people at a lower pay grade.

Yeah, Obama doesn't know the details of where AF1 is at every minute of the day, nor would I think he knows how much the napkins used on AF1 cost... or how many gallons of fuel it burns per air mile. that's why there is an office within the White House and a squadron (I think that's the unit) at Andrews which are responsible for the plane and where it goes. You think Bush got a daily briefing on where AF1 was, that some assistant popped his head into the Oval Office to announce that the plane was being taken out to give the crew some airtime?

There are plenty of real issues to criticize Obama, why bother making up things? You think making unsubstantiated claims is going to appeal to the voters whose support you're going to need next year?

Question - Just when does T... (Below threshold)
marc:

Question - Just when does Tone Deaf turn into blatantly stupid?

That said this stunt was thought to be a good idea by White House Military Office director Louis Caldera who, according to him, notified the proper authorities in NYC.

What we don't know at this point is what those knuckleheads running NYC did with the information.

Then there's the little matter of Louis Caldera possibly falling on his own sword rather than push blame up the food chain.

And it's not like barack hussein obama's "buck stops here" sign is written in permanent ink, more like invisible ink, just ask Holder when he got word the "torture" investigation was dumped into his lap.

Were not making it up?? Its... (Below threshold)
914:

Were not making it up?? Its right there on the big screen! Open Your eyes!

What are some real issues to criticize Obama about Steve?

hmmmm, nationalizing health... (Below threshold)

hmmmm, nationalizing health care? TARP? releasing the 'torture' memos? trillion dollar deficits? not letting banks repay bailout money? bailing out Detroit? yeah, you're right, there's nothing there, let's spend all of our time blaming him for this. by the way, just how far did the right get when Clinton himself - and not some flunky - held up traffic at LAX so he could get his haircut?

and the 'making it up' was ... (Below threshold)

and the 'making it up' was claiming Obama himself knew/gave approval of this, not the flight itself.

steve sturm: "Do you rea... (Below threshold)

steve sturm: "Do you really think Obama gets so into the details of what people in his administration are doing that he would personally have signed off on this?"

Steve you must have a lifetime supply of Obama brand Kool-Aid!

I would not usually expect Obama to any real knowledge of flight-plans...but this is one hell of an exception!

So it's (a) or (b)...there is no (c):
(a) he is so out of control of his White House staff that they could and WOULD pull this stunt without his knowledge/approval

(b) he knew of and approved it...in which case he is a TOTAL moron so obsessed with doing things that please HIM that he doesn't give the consequences a second thought

Unsubstantiated claims? Wha... (Below threshold)
914:

Unsubstantiated claims? What the f r You talking about Steve?

Im waiting.......what are the legitimate issues to criticize and debate You and Obama on?

tic tic tic....

Mr. Strum,I believ... (Below threshold)

Mr. Strum,

I believe the proper is expression is "The Buck Stops Here."

If these clowns were that desperate to have photos of AF1 against the NY Skyline I'd like to recommend a lillte piece of software called PhotoShop.

For less than $20k they could by an absolutely top of the line fully loaded Mac and copy of CS4. In addition to the panic - what do you suppose we paid for that circus stunt flyby?

I wonder how many New Yorke... (Below threshold)
Jason Author Profile Page:

I wonder how many New Yorkers are glad today that they voted for President Zero.

You have to remember that t... (Below threshold)
Cloudfish:

You have to remember that the White House is liberal now. While they may have notified the local authorities, I think that they didn't even think to make some announcement through the media because, well, 9/11 was sooo long ago--and we're trying to make nicey-nice with terrorists freedom fighters. I mean after all--the terrorist attack man-caused-disaster isn't still fresh in the minds of the people because we've all MovedOn....

Move along. Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain....

Hmmm. My above comment for... (Below threshold)
Cloudfish:

Hmmm. My above comment formatted correctly in the preview, but doesn't show correctly on my screen now that it's submitted. The words "terrorists" and "terrorist attack" were supposed to be overstruck---but you get the gist.

I think that they didn't... (Below threshold)
Brian:

I think that they didn't even think to make some announcement through the media because...

So you think they should announce to the media the time and place Air Force One will be making a fly-by?

Face it Brian. Your boy fuc... (Below threshold)
914:

Face it Brian. Your boy fucked up..

Louis Caldera ain't "my boy... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Louis Caldera ain't "my boy". But yes, he did fuck up.

Unfrickin believable... (Below threshold)
JG:


Unfrickin believable!!!


I can't believe what I just saw. This fool is so out of touch its unimaginable. Who does that?? In lower Manhattan?

Idiot!!!

Brian, they wouldn't have c... (Below threshold)
brainy435:

Brian, they wouldn't have communicated the time and place AF1 flew by, they would have communicated the time and place a plane that sometimes carries the designation AF1 flew by. Not the same thing. And especially in this case, that would have been the responsible thing to do.

I disagree. The backup AF1 ... (Below threshold)
Brian:

I disagree. The backup AF1 plane, even off-duty, is still a tempting target. As dumb as it was to fly it over Manhattan, it would have been even dumber to also dare someone to shoot it down.

So you think they should... (Below threshold)
Cloudfish:

So you think they should announce to the media the time and place Air Force One will be making a fly-by?

While I understand your point about security, tempting target as it is I think it's rather obvious that the President isn't going to be actually on the plane taking a joy ride for a photo op (after all it'd be hard to actually see him through the window.) (

Geez, sorry for the multipl... (Below threshold)
Cloudfish:

Geez, sorry for the multiple posts--but my comments are not submitting correctly at all. There were a couple of more sentences after that that just disappeared. No special formatting or anything--they show correctly in preview and just disappear after submission.

tempting target as it is... (Below threshold)
Brian:

tempting target as it is I think it's rather obvious that the President isn't going to be actually on the plane

Whether he's aboard isn't obvious, nor does it matter. Since you acknowledge that it's a tempting target in either case, it would be foolish to announce it.

Brian, your justifications ... (Below threshold)
J.R.:

Brian, your justifications for this are just plain stupid and clouded by your partisanship. it wasn't air force one at the time period. Notifying the public would have been the proper thing to do otherwise just photoshop it. Hell mayor bloomberg wasn't even aware of it!

Steve S - "hmmmm, natio... (Below threshold)
marc:

Steve S - "hmmmm, nationalizing health care? TARP? releasing the 'torture' memos? trillion dollar deficits? not letting banks repay bailout money? bailing out Detroit? yeah, you're right, there's nothing there, let's spend all of our time blaming him for this.

Why not? All the issues you note have been written about here and elsewhere and I suspect far into the future.

So yes it is permissible and right to note and be critical of this ignorant stunt.

brian - "Whether he's a... (Below threshold)
marc:

brian - "Whether he's aboard isn't obvious, nor does it matter. Since you acknowledge that it's a tempting target in either case, it would be foolish to announce it."

Foolish if you're not one of the millions that were at or near ground zero on 911.

Would it have been foolish to announce it in this modern age of internet, and 24 hour radio and TV newscasts and it was made at such a time (like 30 mins prior) that gave notice yet not enough time for some sleeper cell to be activated?

Of course not, not in your hyper-partisan world of obamarama.

Brian, your justificatio... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Brian, your justifications for this are just plain stupid and clouded by your partisanship. it wasn't air force one at the time period.

My "justification", as you call it, is that it would have been a security risk and an inviting target. If you don't think that's true, you're welcome to explain why it's not.

otherwise just photoshop it.

Yeah, like there wouldn't be a Wizbang post, "Dishonest Obama fakes photo op!"

You know what Brian, so wha... (Below threshold)
J.R.:

You know what Brian, so what if Wizbang writes a post about a photoshop of an airplane in the President's fleet. BFD. That would be better that creating panic in the nation's biggest city to do nothing more than take a pretty picture.

My "justification", as you call it, is that it would have been a security risk and an inviting target. If you don't think that's true, you're welcome to explain why it's not.

It's not like we don't know where the President is going to be when he is actually going to be on Air Force One! Please, you think targeting a jet that sometimes carries the President (but not this time!) is an inviting and worthwhile target? Why is that? And it is also interesting that you think there are terrorist cells in this country that can muster that sort of moxy and firepower to target such a valued asset of our government. You can really box yourself into a corner with what you're suggesting, but I don't want to derail the thread.

That would be better tha... (Below threshold)
Brian:

That would be better that creating panic in the nation's biggest city

I already said the fly-by was dumb. I'll take your meandering into a strawman argument to mean that you've run out of legitimate ones.

It's not like we don't know where the President is going to be when he is actually going to be on Air Force One!

Really? The Air Force One flight plans are publicly available? So you knew about those unscheduled and secret flights to Iraq?

Please, you think targeting a jet that sometimes carries the President (but not this time!) is an inviting and worthwhile target? Why is that?

The plane that carries the President of the United States getting shot down over Manhattan. You don't think that would make a few terrorists lick their lips? I hope you're not in charge of security somewhere.

And it is also interesting that you think there are terrorist cells in this country that can muster that sort of moxy and firepower to target such a valued asset of our government.

In general, I don't. But if they were to announce, "Air Force One will be flying over Manhattan in 30 minutes", you're tempting fate. The only "firepower" needed could be stashed in some crazy's apartment closet.

1) This is Caldera's mista... (Below threshold)
epador:

1) This is Caldera's mistake and no one else's. It was a REALLY bad idea.
He could have directed release of information about a large plane flyover for photo ops without mentioning AF One, but then that could give terrorists a window to put their own big plane into a building at the same time. Or aim for the big one to shoot it down.
The FAA correctly did not publicly release the classified plans. The mayor's office was notified, but they couldn't release the information beforehand. I guess if they'd leaked it to the NYT's and told them not to publish that maybe would have worked (NOT).
2) It is a great example of why putting a political hack with more political than military experience (OK he graduated form West Point, but he was a Clinton hack and a lackluster Sec of Army) in a military position of responsibility is a mistake and THAT reflects poorly on Obama.
3) Given the current tolerance of the Obama administration for incompetence and stupidity (of Democrats only), the chance he'll have to resign seems low, though it would be a welcome sign IF he were replaced with someone with real operational experience. Preferably in aviation.

Let's face the facts here. ... (Below threshold)
Patrick:

Let's face the facts here. If the Bush Administration had done this all the liberals would be personally blaming George W. Bush for this and EVERYBODY knows it - including those on the left who are now trying to make excuses for Obama. Bush got blamed for EVERYTHING so this is nothing more than payback in kind and if the liberals have a problem with this they should never have started all this childish nonsense in the first place. Look, this came from the White House Military Office. The FAA and the relevant NYC authorities were notified (although Mayor Bloomberg seems to have not been which is interesting) so it was a reasonably big deal and as such it is certainly possible that Obama knew about this before it happened. He knew about the AIG bonuses before he displayed his faux outrage so I would not rule anything out. Obama clearly thinks the Bush Administration overreacted to 9/11 so perhaps he underestimated the extent of how sensitive people still are in Lower Manhattan...

I would like to see a complete investigation of this stupid incident because at the very least it wasted valuable government resources. This stunt was authorized by the Executive Branch, not the Pentagon so I want to know who, what, where, when and why. A large number of civilians were driven into a state of panic (understandably so!) and as such we need to know all the details of this insanely stupid incident.

Again, the truly relevant question is this:

What if Bush had done this? What would the honest response from the leftists be? The number of stupid things we have seen in Obama's first 100 days is becoming absolutely staggering.

The plane that carries t... (Below threshold)
J.R.:

The plane that carries the President of the United States getting shot down over Manhattan. You don't think that would make a few terrorists lick their lips?

But if they were to announce, "Air Force One will be flying over Manhattan in 30 minutes", you're tempting fate. The only "firepower" needed could be stashed in some crazy's apartment closet.

So you think the Air Force doesn't have the ability to take action against something some crazy person has in the closet of their apartment? How sad.

Sorry, given 30 minutes I don't think there is anyone capable of putting together the operation it would take to bring down that plane.

So you think the Air For... (Below threshold)
Brian:

So you think the Air Force doesn't have the ability to take action against something some crazy person has in the closet of their apartment? How sad.

No, what's sad is your eagerness to test that theory on a 747 flying low over Manhattan.

For less than $20k they ... (Below threshold)
James Cloninger:

For less than $20k they could by an absolutely top of the line fully loaded Mac and copy of CS4. In addition to the panic - what do you suppose we paid for that circus stunt flyby?

Well,

1. The 40,000 gallons of fuel to fly it to NYC and back

2. Not to mention the fuel for the chaser

3. The two pilots (though they are on government salary anyway)

4. The headache at TRACON and the various ATC centers to divert other traffic around this stunt, costing those airlines money and time

Those things pop up the top of my head.

So you think the Air For... (Below threshold)
James Cloninger:

So you think the Air Force doesn't have the ability to take action against something some crazy person has in the closet of their apartment? How sad.

Well, depending on the flight path and altitude (and it looks like it was flying below 1000 feet), a simple RPG could be launched against it. "Taking action" requires there to be enough time to react to impliment countermeasures. If it flies right over the path of a RPG launch, there may only be a few seconds time to react, if possible.

Compare:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2003_Baghdad_DHL_attempted_shootdown_incident

Brian,<b... (Below threshold)
maggie:

Brian,


Air Force One is the air traffic control call sign of any United States Air Force aircraft carrying the President of the United States.[1] Since 1990, the presidential fleet has consisted of two specifically configured, highly customized Boeing 747-200B series aircraft - tail codes Special Air Mission (SAM) "28000" and SAM "29000" - with Air Force designation "VC-25A". While these aircraft are referred to as "Air Force One" only while the president is on board, the term is commonly used to describe either of the two aircraft normally used and maintained by the U.S. Air Force solely for the president.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_Force_One

There is no excuse for what happened, and the
buck stops at President Obamas desk.

Moreover, the President's s... (Below threshold)
James Cloninger:

Moreover, the President's staff would need to be aware of where his two planes are at all times, in case of an emergency. CERTAINLY, the USSS will know at anytime where the two SAMs are located.

Err, OK, thanks, maggie, fo... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Err, OK, thanks, maggie, for posting random well-known facts that weren't under dispute. Not sure why you addressed it to me, though.

They could have announced t... (Below threshold)
Dave R:

They could have announced the fly-by to the public very shortly before it took place, not enough in advance to compromise the security of the plane. Or not done it all! But I bet the reason they even needed/wanted to update the file photo was because the previous one has the twin towers in the background, how ironic.

brian - "Really? The Ai... (Below threshold)
marc:

brian - "Really? The Air Force One flight plans are publicly available? So you knew about those unscheduled and secret flights to Iraq?"

Well actually we do. First when it's announced well in advance he's going on an overseas or cross-country trip. (He ain't going by horseback or via his stable of unicorns)

Secondly we know because many if not all the major news stations air live via video either his actual take-off in the Marine one enroute to Andrews or just note his leaving sans the video feed.

More diversion by brian - "In general, I don't. But if they were to announce, "Air Force One will be flying over Manhattan in 30 minutes", you're tempting fate. The only "firepower" needed could be stashed in some crazy's apartment closet.

Jesus G. on a unicycle I agree.

But that's not the point, surely you noted the two F-16's accompanying the jet and surely you know (I hope) a 30 minute notice would only give a potential terrorist time to use the most rudimentary weapon I.E. a shoulder fired rocket the would indeed fit in his or her "closet."

Psst... AF! whether mr. hopey and changey is on board or not is equipped with the latest infared and and counters to both heat seeking rockets and those countered by the use of chaff.

In the end you have no point but to argue about the improbable to divert attention from another in a long series of monumental screw-up by this administration.

And PLEASE, spare me any of that nonsense about him not knowing and lay it at the feet of some underling.

Obama hired this buffoon same as all the tax cheats and lobbyists.

No, what's sad is your e... (Below threshold)
J.R.:

No, what's sad is your eagerness to test that theory on a 747 flying low over Manhattan.

So why hasn't this been done already to a commercial airliner then? Surely that is a better target when full than an empty Presidential plane.

But somehow you think a terrorist, with a purpose, can bring together a plan to shoot down a plane in 30 minutes, but hasn't tried to shoot another one down in almost 8 years.

It was bad form but that seems to be commonplace with this administration. Nothing would have happened had the public known about it a short time before the fly over.

Why is it no one is comment... (Below threshold)
Zelsdorf Ragshaft III:

Why is it no one is commenting on just how stupid and insensetive to fly a jumbo jet over New York City? Kind of like parking a Ryder truck infront of the place the Federal Building in Kansas City used to be. Only bigger. Brian, who does Caldera work for? How is it, you imagine one of the plane used as Air Force One got sent out on a mission without The One's knowledge? Obama Ears is either ignorant and arrogant, or plain stupid. You pick.

Barry and his staff are so ... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

Barry and his staff are so arrogant that they didn't even think they needed to make an announcement of this.

If Barry isn't in the plane, it isn't AF-1 so he could have let the New Yorker's know. What a putz and so is anyone defending this screw up. ww

This whole thing could have... (Below threshold)
TOhio:

This whole thing could have been done in Adobe Photoshop on a computer. The flight was unnecessary.

Perhaps there was another reason for it.

President Bush being blamed... (Below threshold)
Em:

President Bush being blamed for people not being bussed out of New Orleans before the hurricane ring a bell to anyone? Now I'm not saying it was Obama's fault but I do think that we tolerate an awful lot of "blunders" out of Washington these days. Criminal cabinet appointees, running up our deficit by trillions, printing money and so on. So maybe its time to more closely scrutinize the boys in Washington Democrat, Republican, Congress, AND President. BTW I'd like to know just how much it cost the taxpayers since I'm sure we paid for it.

You're welcome Brian.... (Below threshold)
maggie:

You're welcome Brian.
Always glad to share random information.

Did anybody ever consider t... (Below threshold)
Fraser:

Did anybody ever consider that this was an actual terrorist plane planning a similat 9/11 attack??? Hence the jet fighter accompanying the jet.

Why would National media say otherwise and why would the President apologise? Why did nobody including the Mayors office know.

Please consider this and try and be sceptical about the information relayed by media et al...

Does anyone else sense some... (Below threshold)
Steve B:

Does anyone else sense something odd about all this? Why would anyone need a "photo op" which would include AF-1 doing aerobatics over New York City airspace? Is it possible that something else was going on? Where are the pictures in question? Where did the chase aircraft come from? Do their flight logs indicate a preplanned flight or an intercept? If some AF pilot decided to make this his "retirement" flight as a protest it might make more sense, and covering up a morale problem could be the reason for the hush up about the whole matter.




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