No apologies for the wet pants
In an amazing demonstration of poor judgment the FAA approved an Air Force “photo op” over New York City. At 10am Monday morning New Yorkers lost bladder control as it appeared Air Force One might be on a suicide mission into the heart of lower Manhattan. As cynical as that might strike you, one need only glance at the above two photos to see the striking similarity. The humor is quickly lost in the realization that there are an amazingly large number of idiots employed in our government.
A U.S. military F-16 fighter jet escorted a presidential 747 on a low flight mission over the Statue of Liberty – very near the site of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. In what almost appears to be a test, the mission was executed without any notice to the public. The failure to notify the public was not an oversight as portrayed by ABC News, but rather a calculated decision. As reported in the WSJ, the FAA coordinated the flight with both state and local officials. After initially denying any knowledge of the mission an anonymous Port Authority executive leaked the truth.
The FAA had sent a memo out to state and local authorities detailing the flight and specifically prohibited the release of the information to the public. Mayor Bloomberg claims that while the NYPD was informed nearly a week ago he was kept in the dark. If true, this is even more outrageous. New Yorkers were the subject of the worst terrorist attack in world history; three skyscrapers destroyed and nearly 3000 dead less than two hours after two 747s slammed into the most prominent features of the NYC skyline. 747s are not permitted to fly over the city, especially at low altitude. So this morning people all over lower Manhattan fled their buildings and needless suffered flash-backs of the worst day in American history.
Had this been a rogue flight or had a single high level official authorized this we would be no less upset but at least we could expect an angry Obama vowing punishment. However, we not only lack a prompt public reaction from the President but we were given attitude from White House spokesman, Robert Gibbs. When questioned, Gibbs sassed reporters saying, “I was working on other things. You might be surprised to know I don’t know every movement of Air Force One or what happens to it.” There is a compound word to describe someone who responds like this.
Questions that need to be answered include how high up was this decision made? Who decided the public should not know in advance and why? The latter is especially important. Was the administration attempting to see how the public would respond to a repeat of 9/11? Were they so far removed from the public trauma of 9/11 that such thoughts never crossed their minds? If so what does this tell us about the Obama administration’s preparedness for another terrorist attack? Doesn’t it suggest they are in complete denial regarding the reality of terrorism, as I suspect. Or perhaps they feared a right-wing extremist attack against the 747 if any information had been made public? This seems absurd but I don’t put it beyond the pale.
From an administration quick to apologize to any foreigner who expresses the least dislike of the United States, I was surprised at the rude, no belligerent response, given such a blantant an offense. Mind you, I still expect an apology and hopefully the dismissal of Robert Gibbs among others.