Last week, Louis Caldera, director of the White House Military Office, approved a mission for the 747 that carries the president to fly around New York City to be photographed for updated file photos. The plane is properly known as "Air Force One" only when the president is aboard; if Obama decided to go for a sightseeing flight in an Air Force-owned Cessna 172, the Air Traffic Controllers would refer to that plane as "Air Force One".
They decided that the mission should be somewhat "secret" for security purposes. New York Police Deputy Commissioner Paul J. Browne said the department had been alerted to the flight by the federal agency "with directives to local authorities not to disclose information about it."
So, people in lower Manhattan were treated to the spectacle of a low-flying Jumbo jet(!), closely followed by two F-16 fighters(!)
Gee, I wonder how people reacted?
"I was here on 9/11," said iReporter Tom Kruk, who spotted the plane as he was getting coffee Monday morning and snapped a photo. Kruk called the sight of the aircraft low in the sky "unsettling."President Obama and New York Mayor Bloomberg are reportedly furious about the incident.
Linda Garcia-Rose, a social worker who counsels post-traumatic stress disorder patients in an office just three blocks from where the World Trade Center towers once stood, called the flight an "absolute travesty."
"There was no warning. It looked like the plane was about to come into us," she said. "I'm a therapist, and I actually had a panic attack."
Garcia-Rose, who works with nearly two dozen post-traumatic stress disorder patients ages 15 to 47, said she was inundated with phone calls from patients Monday morning.
"They're traumatized. They're asking 'How could this happen?' They're nervous. Their anxiety levels are high," she said.
Actually, that wasn't a "dumb" maneuver; that's too weak to describe it...more accurately, it was an "assholish" maneuver!