Barack Obama is set to take his first extended tour of sub-Saharan Africa this month—and it ain't gonna be cheap. Obama's security for the trip could cost as much as $100 million, according to planning documents obtained by the Washington Post. What's all that money going to pay for?
- A Secret Service detail numbering in the hundreds.
- An air-lift for 56 support vehicles, including 14 limousines.
- A fighter jet contingent to patrol the airspace overhead.
- Three truckloads of bulletproof glass, which will be airlifted in, and then affixed over the president's hotel room windows.
- An aircraft carrier stationed off the coast, equipped with a full medical trauma center in case of an emergency.
Perhaps the craziest part: None of this is unusual for a presidential trip abroad, though sources familiar with the planning say this trip will be a tad more expensive than most. And it could have been worse: the Obamas originally planned to take a safari, which would have forced a special, sniper rifle-armed counterassault team to protect against lions and the like. That jaunt has since been cancelled, though they insist the Post's interest had nothing to do with it.