"Apparently, nobody in the building was informed that this was going to happen," he said. "Everyone panicked, as you can certainly understand."
It's easy to understand why there would be panic. It's astonishing that nobody thought the public ought to have a heads up.
So what kind of an approved activity was it? A photo op. A photo op involving one of the planes that serves as Air Force One.
Details on the photo shoot -- except that it caused mass panic -- aren't known yet. What is known is that everyone, save the public, knew about it.
An FAA spokesman told the New York Times that "the photo op was approved and coordinated with everyone."
The NYPD acknowledged that they were aware of it but said the FAA told them not to talk about it.
“The flight of a VC-25 aircraft and F-16 fighters this morning was authorized by the F.A.A. for the vicinity of the Statue of Liberty with directives to local authorities not to disclose information about it but to direct any inquiries to the F.A.A. Air Traffic Security Coordinator,” the Police Department said in a statement.
And the Department of Defense released a statement that could generously be called jibberish.