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Barack Obama took around 3000 people with him to his post-election family outing to India? I think I smell a rat in there somewhere….

It’s interesting to note that, when Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev went to Iceland in October, 1986 to hold the second of three summit meetings which eventually helped bring down the Iron Curtain, that their entire entourage consisted of but a relatively few aircraft and personnel.

Yes, Ronald Reagan brought with him the two highly polished Boeing 707′s (designated as Air Force VC-137C’s) used by all the Presidents since 1962, until they were replaced in 1990 by a couple of Boeing 747′s, which are in use today.

There were also a couple of C-5A Galaxies which carried one or more helicopters, and perhaps the Presidential Limousines and a couple of C-141 Starlifters, which carried many of the ground vehicles, such as black Suburbans and other essential security equipment.

Of course, there were two or three 747′s that came and went, filled with pool reporters, camera crews, and other dignitaries and probably along with a few ancillary jets as well, which would have been able to use the Reykjavik Airport.

The Soviets (yes, it was still the USSR back then) brought in a couple of the Soviet-made large cargo transport type aircraft loaded with what they needed, and maybe a another aircraft or two. There was also a highly polished Aeroflot Airliner which presumably deposited Mr. Gorbachev on the island, which stayed the duration, just as President Reagan’s did also.

There couldn’t have been anywhere near 3000 people there for this event, even though it was a great big deal.And, oh, when it was all wrapping up, President Reagan didn’t forget the troops.  He gave them a rousing off-the-cuff speech for what seemed like a half hour or or more, held in a cold-soaked hangar at NAS Keflavik.  The standing-room-only crowd of about four to five hundred Navy and Air Force personnel had been sequestered for about 8 hours in the chilly hangar, but the President got all the love back and then some from those enthusiastic troops who got their orders from a Commander in Chief they could truly trust and believe.

I know this is all true; I was there. How times have changed….

Barack Obama took around 3000 people with him to his post-election family outing to India? I think I smell a rat in there somewhere….

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