Scenes from Inside a Propaganda Disaster

The Pentagon has released a document dump of internal e-mails from its struggle to deal with the Air Force One flyover that freaked out Manhattan in April. You can smell the panic.

We haven't had time to digest the hundreds of pages yet, but here are some snapshots that show the frantic attempts to deal with the "flail," as one Pentagon e-mail put it, and pass the blame up the bureaucratic chain.

The first inkling that something has gone wrong starts to circulate.

Scenes from Inside a Propaganda Disaster

Uh oh. The blogs are on it.

Scenes from Inside a Propaganda Disaster

And Robert Gibbs is not happy.

Scenes from Inside a Propaganda Disaster

So let's talk about how to not get blamed for this.

Scenes from Inside a Propaganda Disaster

One way to get blamed is to talk to reporters. SO DO NOT TALK TO REPORTERS.

Scenes from Inside a Propaganda Disaster

Those fuckers at NORAD are going to try to blame us—don't let them!

Scenes from Inside a Propaganda Disaster

Those acronyms are military-speak for this was not our fault.

Scenes from Inside a Propaganda Disaster


She's got a point.

Scenes from Inside a Propaganda Disaster




This is a chart from a media assessment of the flyover story's coverage. Those marks quantifying web coverage mean "infinity."

Scenes from Inside a Propaganda Disaster


Why won't the bloggers shut up about this?

Scenes from Inside a Propaganda Disaster


They seriously won't shut up about this.

Scenes from Inside a Propaganda Disaster


Especially the conservative ones.

Scenes from Inside a Propaganda Disaster


Oh shit. Twitter. But thank god for the swine flu.

Scenes from Inside a Propaganda Disaster


It's cool, Boeing paid for the whole thing.

Scenes from Inside a Propaganda Disaster