Flyby needlessly scares New York - East Valley Tribune: Opinion

Flyby needlessly scares New York

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Posted: Thursday, April 30, 2009 3:01 pm | Updated: 12:27 am, Sat Oct 8, 2011.

Our View: President Barack Obama called Air Force One's panic-inducing low pass over Manhattan Monday morning "a mistake ... and it will not happen again."

President Barack Obama called Air Force One's panic-inducing low pass over Manhattan Monday morning "a mistake ... and it will not happen again."

Obama wasn't referring to the cost of $328,835 or the purpose - to take some pretty pictures of the president's long-distance luxury transportation cruising around a beloved national landmark. Those concerns rarely bother anyone in Washington, no matter who complains.

No, what Obama considers to be a mistake was the pointless, counterproductive and potentially dangerous secrecy surrounding the Air Force One flyby.

For whatever reason, the Federal Aviation Administration ordained that Air Force One's approach to the Statue of Liberty should be on "a need to know" basis and "shall not be released to the public and the media" - as if a giant 747 is going to roar past the site of the World Trade Center at 1,000 feet on a weekday morning and no one's going to notice. Even New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg wasn't alerted. That's just crazy.

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