The Walter Mitty Candidate

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THE PLANK MARCH 21, 2008

The Walter Mitty Candidate

Hillary Clinton, March 17:

I remember landing under sniper fire. There was supposed to be some kind of a greeting ceremony at the airport, but instead we just ran with our heads down to get into the vehicles to get to our base.

Washington Post reporter Michael Dobbs, March 21:

Numerous reporters, including the Washington Post's John Pomfret, covered her [1996 Bosnia] trip. A review of nearly 100 news accounts of her visit shows that not a single newspaper or television station reported any security threat to the First Lady. "As a former AP wire service hack, I can safely say that it would have been in my lead had anything like that happened," said Pomfret. According to Pomfret, the Tuzla airport was "one of the safest places in Bosnia" in March 1996, and "firmly under the control" of the 1st Armored Division.

Far from running to an airport building with their heads down, Clinton and her party were greeted on the tarmac by smiling U.S. and Bosnian officials. An eight-year-old Moslem girl, Emina Bicakcic, read a poem in English. An Associated Press photograph of the greeting ceremony, above, shows a smiling Clinton bending down to receive a kiss....

The First Lady's schedule, released on Wednesday and available here, confirms that she arrived in Tuzla at 8.45 a.m. and was greeted by various dignitaries, including Emina Bicakcic, (whose name has mysteriously been redacted from the document.) You can see CBS News footage of the arrival ceremony here. The footage shows Clinton walking calmly out of the back of the C-17 military transport plane that brought her from Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany.

The moral of this story? Don't mess with Sinbad.

--Christopher Orr

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