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I think I caught the Japanese Prime Minister today, 9/20/11
September 21, 2011
1:48 am
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Chuck Slusarczyk Jr.

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While at work this evening, we spotted a thick contrail (what we call a "juicer!") heading eastbound on the track heading towards Washington where we often see Dulles flights.  I scrambled to the roof to catch some shots and when I got back down we tried to figure out what it was.  Flight Aware wasn't showing anything on that track, nor did a search for 744's.  On a hunch, I thought it looked like it might be one of the Japanese versions of Air Force One, and sure enough, I found an article that shows the Prime Minister was on his way to Washington for a meeting with President Obama!  Since governmental and military aircraft do not display on Flight Aware, by the process of elimination, we came to the conclusion that it must be what we saw.

Although the shots didn't come out too good, I think it's pretty obvious that this is one of the two VIP 747's used by Prime Minister Noda.  What do you guys think?

Here's an article describing the visit:

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And here's the Wikipedia entry on the two aircraft:

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Pretty cool no matter what! Laugh

 

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September 21, 2011
1:55 am
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Corey Betke
Cleveland, OH

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Doesn't look like it could be anything else to me, very very nice catch.

September 21, 2011
5:47 am
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RampBoss

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That is awesome!

September 21, 2011
9:47 am
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masseybrown

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From your subject line, I expected you to say you caught him in a hotel room molesting the cleaning staff.

FWIW, my house is on a line with the runways at Andrews AFB and something big and slow went by during dinner.  Maybe the same guy.

September 21, 2011
11:35 am
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Stephen Mosley Sr.
Columbus, Ohio

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Nice.

September 21, 2011
3:52 pm
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Phoenix6
Cleveland,OH

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Too cool!!! Looks like you got him, nice catch ! Bonzaaaaaiii !

"Cats rule, Hornets drool!"——AoA Photography©

 

Mike

September 21, 2011
6:45 pm
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nconrad

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Definitely...the dot on the tail gives it away!  Awesome catch, Chuck!

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I think I caught the Japanese Prime Minister today, 9/20/11 | Spotting at Altitude | Forum