April 27, 2009

Buzzing Manhattan

In this image taken with a cell phone by Jason McLane, the primary presidential aircraft, a Boeing 747 known as Air Force One when the president is aboard, flies low over New York Harbor, followed by an F-16 chase plane during a federal government photo op Monday, April 27, 2009. A low-flying Boeing 747 escorted by two fighter jets as part of a federal government photo opportunity over lower Manhattan caused a brief panic among workers near ground zero on Monday. (AP Photo/Jason McLane)

I don’t know what kind of photos the Pentagon was looking for, or what they got, but this image — taken yesterday by one Jason McLane on his cell phone — seems to have emerged, as I look around the web, as the signature shot of yesterday’s aerial misunderstanding over NYC. (For a cross section, here is a WSJ slide show of reader-supplied photos of the fly over, and here is the one the NYT ran.)

This one is a particularly macabre shot for a number of reason, including: a.) the grainy, captured-by-bystander quality; b.) the low orientation of the plane in what could loosely be imagined as an alignment to the building; c.) the sense of the fighter plane as either a second airliner further away, or the Air Force in pursuit of a hijack; and d.) the strange juxtaposition of the (phallic-looking) crane, which maybe (in a 9/11 do-over fantasy?) conjures a shoot-down scenario.

(image: Jason McLane via A.P.)

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Michael Shaw
See other posts by Michael here.

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