According to the Department of Defense and the mainstream media, yesterday's flyover by a plane that is used to fly the president (it's called Air Force One when the president is on board) and two F-16s over Manhattan, causing thousands to flee in panic, was just an innocent photo op. But if that was the case, why did the DoD alert the NYCPD with directives to local authorities not to disclose information about it?
According to NYPD Spokesman Paul Browne, "typically a flight like this would be publicised to avoid causing a panic, but they were under orders not to in this case." See: "Air Force One flyover sparks panic in New York."
In a memo obtained by CBS 2 HD, the Federal Aviation Administration's James Johnston said the agency was aware of "the possibility of public concern regarding DOD (Department of Defense) aircraft flying at low altitudes" in an around New York City. But they demanded total secrecy from the NYPD, the Secret Service, the FBI and even the mayor's office and threatened federal sanctions if the secret got out.
Why would the DoD need to keep a photo op secret, especially when it was going to be seen by thousands anyway, and (they must have known) would cause a panic?
As someone who has a good friend who was seriously traumatized from the events of 9/11 (she was at her apartment directly across the street from the towers on 9/11 and saw people jumping), this event must be beyond her comprehension and another blow to her fragile constitution. Here is a video of how people reacted yesterday.
It also doesn't seem plausible that the DoD wouldn't tell Obama that a Air Force One plane would be slowly flying over Manhattan mimicking the 9/11 flight path, followed by a fighter jet. Obama and Mayor Bloomberg said they didn't know about it and were "furious" upon hearing the news. From the UK Guardian linked above:
"Federal officials provided few other details and would not say why the public and area building security managers weren't notified.
President Barack Obama was furious, a White House official who did not wish to be identified told the Associated Press."
Here's Mayor Bloomberg on the flyover:
This event and the excuse for it just doesn't pass the smell test. Even New Yorkers are not buying the "photo op" charade: check out these New York Times comments. It seems like something else was going on. Was someone sending a message to the new president to turn down the rhetoric on prosecuting Bush officials for torture? Or possibly to put pressure on him to go along with the swine flu program and mandatory vaccinations?
Even if we don't want to get into conspiracy theories, if anything, Louis Caldera, the White House Military Office Director, who claimed responsibility for this incredible stupid stunt should be fired. But knowing how our government in the past rewarded incompetence and failure, he might just be given a medal.