Posted by: Sarah Kemp | April 30, 2009

9/11 scare or Air Force One Publicity?


TIMES released two article that really stunned me… “So Why Does the Air Force One Need Publicity, Anyway?” Also, another article, “Jet Flyover in Manhattan Sets Off Panic”

The whole panic was a scare…by the United States Department of Defense. There were many reports of a low flying 747 with a F 16 jet flying behind it, circling the Statue of Liberty, and around lower Manhattan. The director of the White House military office, Louis Caldera, took the blame a few hours later… The airliner was a 747 that is called Air Force One when used by the president, and they were having a “photo op” with the President’s 747 flying in front of national land marks.

In the article Caldera’s statement to the TIMES:

“Last week, I approved a mission over New York. I take responsibility for that decision,” Caldera said. “While federal authorities took the proper steps to notify state and local authorities in New York and New Jersey, it’s clear that the mission created confusion and disruption. I apologize and take responsibility for any distress that flight caused.”

“When told of the flight, President Barack Obama was furious, a White House official said on the condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations”(TIME).

The PR photo opportunity with the President’s 747 caused much controversy in the White House and for NY, and NJ residents after buildings were evacuated and many precautions were taken in the cities, for fear of another attack.

I was so surprised by hearing this story after everything that we have learned in Intro to PR this semester… What a PR crisis form our government. This was a prime example of bad communication and how when you do not work with all aspects of your team then crisis is possible at all levels of expertise.

Here is a video taken by a pedestrian on the street… you can tell the panic and fear they were feeling…

Other Articles:

Washington Post

New York Times



  1. Holy Cow Sarah! At first, by reading the article I thought, “oh that got way out of hand. People need to chill out.” But then when I saw the video! That was scary! Really bad communication.

  2. WOW! what a video! This is crazy Sarah!!

  3. […] Jump to Comments I commented on Sarah kemp’s […]

  4. I heard about this, but hadn’t seen the video…CRAZY!

  5. I couldn’t believe this either! How ridiculous is it that it didnt even cross their minds to WARN the public about what they were doing?? No heads up or anything..that just blows my mind. And the money that was wasted on the evacuations of all the buildings? I dont even know what to say..great video though!

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