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Body Language 
Who’s in Charge Here?

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America’s leaders watch the Abbottabad raid live on SEALcam. In addition to Biden and Obama, the people in the photo are: Seated, from left: Brigadier General Marshall B. “Brad” Webb, Assistant Commanding General, Joint Special Operations Command; Deputy National Security Advisor Denis McDonough; Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton; and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates. Standing, from left, are: Admiral Mike Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; National Security Advisor Tom Donilon; Chief of Staff Bill Daley; Tony Binken, National Security Advisor to the Vice President; Audrey Tomason Director for Counterterrorism; John Brennan, Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism; and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. While I doubt that any of these people are members of America’s “Deep State,” this picture certainly raises questions about the power structure in the White House.

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  1. Franklin Ryckaert
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    Well Obama’s subordinate position,his posture,even the insecure look in his eyes do not make you think: here is the Commander-in-Chief of the most powerful nation on earth!Every other (white) person in the room exudes more authority than him.The slightly mild smile on the face of the person in the blue uniform seated to his left suggests that we typically have a case of “Affirmative Action” here.

    • White Republican
      Posted May 5, 2011 at 7:01 pm | Permalink

      It might be said that “affirmative action” is a form of the Peter Principle: Blacks are promoted into jobs with duties they cannot fulfill.

  2. Greg Dancer
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 4:27 pm | Permalink

    So, NSA Donilon stands while his deputy McDonough gets to sit? And Admiral Mullen…well, he doesn’t look too robust, does he?

    The photographer got a wide berth. Is that an unidentified head in the foreground?

    • Erik Nordman
      Posted May 7, 2011 at 6:14 pm | Permalink

      Adm. Mullen is standing “at ease”, which is the normal posture for a standing, stationary soldier in uniform. Arms crossed in that situation would be unnatural. It’s been almost 20 years for me, but I still stand like that.

      In my personal experience, in and out of uniform, the crossed arms-style can be either Alpha Male or wanna-be. It’s hard to tell from a photo.

  3. William
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 4:52 pm | Permalink
  4. FORP
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 6:35 pm | Permalink

    Stop worrying, and learn to love the Military Industrial Complex.

  5. Lew
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 8:10 pm | Permalink

    I see two unidentified people in the photo. The head in the foreground is unidentified in this caption. There person standing behind Robert Gates with his arms folded (Black suit, yellow tie) is also unidentified.

    The back row is:

    Admiral Mike Mullen (tan shirt, black tie)

    National Security Advisor Tom Donilon (blue shirt, arms folded, no tie)

    Chief of Staff Bill Daley; (blue suit, blue tie)

    Tony Binken, National Security Advisor to the Vice President; (blue shirt, looking over Daley’s shoulder

    Audrey Tomason Director for Counterterrorism; (the irrelevant looking female in the back; obviously an affirmative action/quota appointment)

    John Brennan, Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism (off white shirt)

    Director of National Intelligence James Clapper (bald head, goatee, glasses, blue shirt)

    That leaves the head and the foreground and the man in the Black suit unidentified in the caption.

  6. Edgardus de la Vega
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 11:25 pm | Permalink

    There’s sort of a stiff or ‘etch’ like composition to this photograph, thereby ‘giving it away’. Each figure is so well set: ‘stilted’ or ‘woody’ can be added to the description.

    There you have it: corruption in all its stiltedness and woodiness.

  7. Posted May 6, 2011 at 4:51 am | Permalink

    He looks very happy that the grown ups let him stay up and watch.

  8. CompassionateFascist
    Posted May 7, 2011 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

    “Deep State” – yeah…not a Goldman Sachist in sight.

    • Uncle Fritz
      Posted May 8, 2011 at 2:09 am | Permalink

      They can’t be bothered with this silly charade and photo-op for the American herd – they have plenty of Shabbos-goyim and similar water-carriers to see to all that…inclusing the water-carrier in chief!!

  9. Junghans
    Posted May 8, 2011 at 11:41 am | Permalink

    It looks like a real life picture of the hirelings of Zog’s Golem…

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