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View Diary: He's Not Even Pretending Anymore (209 comments)

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  •  Have to deal with a significant nit. (4+ / 0-)
    Mr. Cheney kept W. flying aimlessly in the air on 9/11 while he and Lynn left on a helicopter for a secure undisclosed location
    According to Richard Clarke for 9/11 especially, and the history on this, POTUS is supposed to be in Air Force One if the country is under attack.

    -It is a flying office, it is why POTUS can go anywhere on the planet and still be very much in contact and charge of the country. [That said, it has nothing to do with AF1 or the situation, that W was Not in charge on 9/11.]

    -A moving target is harder to find and hit than a stationary one, especially if the position is known. Furthermore, the plane can be protected by rotating fighter jets. The odds of getting through that are too small to calculate.

    -The Secret Service determines where POTUS needs to be in order to protect him. They made the call on 9/11. What did NOT make sense was letting him stay at the elementary school as long as they did. There was an airport very close, a plane could have veered off course and hit the school before an air traffic controller would be able to respond, let alone the AF- especially on 9/11. Dead kids all over the place would have been a problem.  

    -The Secret Service and Clarke were not ready to call DC safe enough for Bush to come back to when he did. He over road their directives, it turned out ok.

    This is the first I have read or heard that the Cheney's ever left the WH bunker and were flown anywhere in a helicopter. Continuity of Government (COG) protocol went into effect immediately. Key cabinet members went to safe locations which were equipped with video connection to the WH, Minetta ended up in the bunker with the Cheney's, Clarke and a bunch of security people were in the situation room. The speaker of the house and Laura were both taken to safe locations.

    The protocol and facilities had undergone a lot of upgrading the decade before under Clarke's supervision due to the '93 WTC bombing and embassies. During the cold war, the issue had been if a nuke were exploded, POTUS needed to be somewhere underground. Post cold war, it was no longer likely.

    This is how the situation was supposed to be handled and that critique keeps coming up. It makes no sense if you lived through 'duck and cover' and know the history of Air Force One. Even more if you married into an AF family with a FiL who was an AF fighter wing commander for decades - lots of NORAD experience.

    "People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed; never throw out anyone. " Audrey Hepburn "A Beautiful Woman"

    by Ginny in CO on Sun Mar 10, 2013 at 04:16:52 AM PDT

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