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F-16 fighter jets take down lost plane (gently) - Obama relocated

By Jimmy Orr / April 24, 2009

William Wales, of Maine, takes a map from his airplane at the Maryland Airport in Indian Head, Md. on Friday. Wales, who is believed to have accidentally flown his plane into restricted airspace near the U.S. Capitol, was escorted away by two fighter jets.

JACQUELYN MARTIN/AP

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It's happened before, and it'll happen again.

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A small plane went into restricted airspace in Washington, DC, today. This time though it got a little too close for comfort. So President Obama and Vice President Biden had to be briefly relocated to ensure their safety. And for a while the US Capitol was evacuated.

Within minutes of the single-engine plane entering the restricted zone, it was over. Peacefully.

Had the two F-16 fighter jets just blown the offending plane out of the sky, it would have been far more newsworthy. But "shoot first, ask questions later" isn't the policy of the military when a plane strays into the capital's airspace.

And that's a good thing, because it was an accident. Just a couple flying from Maine to North Carolina to see their daughter. Probably the man got lost. The wife told him to ask someone for help. Being a male, he refused and next thing you know, Iceman and Maverick show up.

The owner of the airport where the plane landed said it was a navigation mistake.

"The pilot got confused," Tom Bauserman told the Associated Press.

"This has happened many times," he continued. "The restricted zone in D.C., all it does is catch poor innocent people. They've never caught a terrorist, it's just people making a mistake."

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