Boeing 747 planes become Air Force One when the commander in chief is aboard. The current planes are getting old, and the Pentagon wants to buy new ones. CBS News’ Mark Albert reports from behind the scenes on how for the first time the military may buy three 747s to replace the current two.
Air Force One is the most recognizable aircraft in the world: six stories tall, two-thirds of a football field long and carrying immeasurable prestige.
More than “Hail to the Chief,” more than the ubiquitous Secret Service agents, even more than the famous seal, there is no more identifiable symbol of the mobile presidency than Air Force One.
“It has come to represent the power of the American presidency, the reach of the American presidency,” author Ken Walsh said. “It’s come to symbolize American technology and America’s technological prowess.”
Walsh wrote a book on Air Force One and has covered the past five presidents for U.S. News and World Report. He’s flown on Air Force One about 300 times, which begs the question, what’s it like to fly on the presidential aircraft?