Have you ever heard someone say something and think to yourself, did I hear that right?
There have been many times during this presidency that I have wondered if my mind was playing tricks on me or if what I was hearing was actually that ridiculous.
Most recently, I had to just shake my head at what I heard from those connected with this administration after yet another breach of security at the White House.
Apparently, early Monday morning around 3:08 a.m., U.S. Secret Service officers said they “heard and observed a ‘quad copter’ device, approximately two feet in diameter, flying at a very low altitude and ultimately crashing on the southeast side of the complex (or White House grounds).”
Smartphone-powered drone is seen at Consumer Electronics Show 2015 in Las Vegas (Image source: YouTube)
A radar system at the White House which is designed to detect flying objects, including large drones, failed to detect this small drone.
Upon hearing the Secret Service’s description of the incident, it immediately struck me that the Secret Service and President Barack Obama have something in common.
Each is proficient at using euphemisms to minimize the severity of real or potential danger.
Obama refuses to refer to brutal slayings by the Islamic State as radical Islamic terrorism. He recently directed the media to instead refer to the killings as “violent extremism based on a warped view of Islam.”
The Secret Service calls a device that crashes onto the White House lawn, a “quad copter” used for recreational purposes, instead of a drone.
How cute. They also forgot to mention that their radar had been ineffective in detecting this "little" device.
Even White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest assured the American public (while speaking from India where he has a front row seat to watch Obama and Prime Minister Naredra Modi sipping tea together in a garden gazebo in New Delhi, India) that there is absolutely nothing to worry about.
A small drone crashed on the lawn of the White House early Tuesday morning. Photo Credit: AP.
Earnest said that “the early indications are” that the device “does not pose any sort of ongoing threat to anybody at the White House.”
It seems that they have been trying to convince us for years now that these "devices" are just unmanned aircraft that are lifted up by four propellers and of no real concern to the American public.
What damage could they possibly do, right?
In January 2009, Obama launched a covert action on his third day in office. The CIA drone flattened a house in Pakistan. At least 10 militants were killed along with civilian casualties.
Reports indicated that at least nine civilians were killed and a 14-year-old boy who survived reportedly had “horrific injuries” including shrapnel wounds in his stomach, a fractured skull and a lost eye.
Later that same day, the CIA instigated another initiative with drones and killed between five and 10 people when they leveled an additional house. All of the dead were civilians.
Obama supposedly launched over 390 covert drone strikes in his first five years in office.
Even today, a United States drone attack occurred in Yemen killing three people.
In this May 23, 2013 file photo, President Barack Obama talks about national security, at the National Defense University at Fort McNair in Washington. Five years into his presidency, Obama presides over a national security apparatus that in many ways still resembles the one left behind by President George W. Bush. Drones are killing terrorism suspects, the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, holds "enemy combatants," and the government secretly collects telephone records of millions of Americans. Credit: AP
With so many missions under the administration’s belt, who better would know how “benign” drones are than the Obama administration?
As it turns out, this week's drone mishap may have been just a government worker, who doesn’t work at the White House, coincidentally out at three in the morning, flying a drone onto the White House lawn.
After all, how many of us have done that very same thing? Even the officials described the drone as being used for "recreational" purposes. The worker was just out having some fun.
However, the same government officials did not give an explanation as to why someone would be flying a drone near the White House at that time of day, but did indicate that the device was not armed with a camera.
Now if it had been equipped with a camera, I don’t know about you, but that would have made all the difference.
A camera on the device would have been far more important than the fact that something weighing a few pounds and being a two-foot quad copter could possibly have carried a small explosive device. The explosives could also have been manually detonated. But I digress.
It was also revealed that the government worker who was flying the device “self-reported” at 9:30 a.m. (isn’t that more than six hours later?) that “he had been in control of the quad copter device that crashed on the White House grounds early this morning,” according to the Secret Service.
I’m sure the worker just needed to get some sleep after being up so late before calling in. Also, he most likely knew that government offices aren’t open until much later.
However, if he had stuck around, he would have seen all of the security officers on the South Grounds of the White House, searching for parts of the device once the complex was locked down by police and emergency vehicles, many of which, according to reports, were clustered around the area.
In any event, I don’t know about you but the explanations given by the Secret Service and Earnest adequately explain everything for me.
To borrow a line from former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, “With all due respect…What difference does it make?” Obviously, it was just some guy out one night having fun at three in the morning near the White House with a drone. No big deal!
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