Posts Tagged ‘botswana

04
Oct
11

this is a shock: the right wing hates the first lady.

MediaMatters: The axe-grinding good-government poseurs at Judicial Watch are in a twist over First Lady Michelle Obama’s June trip to Africa, calling it “a nice taxpayer-funded ‘working’ vacation.” According to documents they obtained via FOIA requests (and their own “calculations”), the trip cost taxpayers $425,000 in travel and food expenses. Their “report” has already been picked up by Drudge, and it’s being flogged by the dimmer corners of the right-wing media.

….. First, it’s ridiculous to criticize the First Lady for the travel costs of an official trip to Africa. She’s the First Lady; if she travels anywhere, it’s going to be funded with public money. She can’t exactly fly stand-by on Southwest.

Second, the South Africa safari was paid for with the Obama’s private funds. What’s more, in taking her daughters on safari in Africa, Mrs. Obama was following in the footsteps of her predecessor. (Read here about Laura Bush and her daughters’ safari in Africa)

(A quick peek at Judicial Watch’s press release archive doesn’t turn up any outraged denunciations of Laura Bush’s safari-going ways.)

…. to say that the trip “was as much an opportunity for the Obama family and friends to go on a safari as it was a trip intended to advance the administration’s agenda in Africa” is absurd. The six-day trip was dominated by official events and meetings with world leaders…..

…. Judicial Watch doesn’t really explain how a meeting with Nelson Mandela constitutes “tourism.” Also, the other events Judicial Watch considers “tourism” – visits to museums and historical landmarks – are standard fare for visiting dignitaries. Laura Bush, during the same Africa trip noted above, toured museums and memorials dedicated to victims of apartheid and genocide…..

Full post here

Soweto, June 22

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ABC:  ….. The White House says a number of assertions made by conservative government watchdog Judicial Watch are in error:

The group calculated that the use of the C-32A aircraft cost taxpayers $424,142 (34.8 flight hours x $12,188 per hour).

“The number stated is misconstrued and out of context,” says a senior White House official. “The hourly rate is not the marginal cost of operating the plane – it is an accounting figure that prices in a number of fixed costs from maintaining the Air Force fleet for this kind of plane over a year. For example, it includes estimated replacement parts, depreciation, repairs, and costs that would have been incurred regardless of this flight.”

Judicial Watch says that Sasha and Malia Obama are listed as “Senior Staff.” Not true, says the White House.

“The Obama daughters were not listed as Senior Staff – that only designates the area of the plane where they were seated,” says the official. “The Air Force categorizes the passengers by compartment on the plane.”

…. The senior White House official says that private safari “was designated as a private event and paid for personally.”…. “It was an official trip with a 5-7 official events each day,” the official says.

****

FIRST LADY MICHELLE OBAMA’S VISIT TO SOUTH AFRICA AND BOTSWANA

TUESDAY, JUNE 21 – PRETORIA & JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA

Mrs. Obama began her day by traveling to Pretoria where she met with President Zuma’s wife, Nompumelelo Ntuli-Zuma …..  she then attended a reception with South African leaders organized by the U.S. Embassy … She then visited the Nelson Mandela Foundation, meeting with Graca Machel, Former First Lady of Mozambique, and wife of former South African President Nelson Mandela. She also met with former President Mandela, before touring the Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg.

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 22 – JOHANNESBURG & CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA

Mrs. Obama visited Regina Mundi Church in Soweto, where she delivered the keynote address to a U.S.-sponsored Young African Women Leaders Forum. She then visited the Hector Pieterson Memorial, honoring the twelve year-old boy who protested apartheid and was shot and killed by apartheid government police. In the afternoon, Mrs Obama attended two sessions of a forum of Young African Women Leaders. Mrs. Obama completed her visit to Johannesburg by leading the final group of forum participants in a community service project.

THURSDAY, JUNE 23 – CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA

Mrs. Obama began her day in Cape Town by thanking United States Consulate employees and their families. She then visited Robben Island – where former President Mandela was held for 18 of the 27 years he was imprisoned. She then delivered remarks and took questions from students at the University of Cape Town. She then visited the Cape Town Soccer Stadium where she met with Archbishop Desmond Tutu and organizations dedicated to combating HIV/AIDS in South Africa.

FRIDAY, JUNE 24 – CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA & GABORONE, BOTSWANA

Mrs. Obama visited the Botswana Baylor Children’s Clinic Center of Excellence’s Teen Club that was assembled to teach leadership among teens and encourage young people to teach others about HIV/AIDS. Mrs. Obama joined Teen Club members in a service project. She then had a meeting with President Ian Khama.

SATURDAY, JUNE 25 – GABORONE, BOTSWANA

Mrs. Obama began her day by thanking U.S. Embassy employees and their families. Following this event, Mrs. Obama and her family departed for private family safari events.

SUNDAY, JUNE 26 – GABORONE, BOTSWANA

Mrs. Obama and her family left Botswana to return to the United States.

****

But this trip was okay:

Laura Bush in Cape Town, South Africa, July 12, 2005

July 2005: After a safari weekend, Laura Bush stepped out of a dusty SUV with her twin daughters on Monday to serve as a goodwill ambassador in Africa for President Bush.

The first lady’s whirl through South Africa, Tanzania and Rwanda this week comes on the heels of a Scotland summit where British Prime Minister Tony Blair made alleviating Africa’s mass suffering the top agenda item for Bush and leaders of other wealthy countries.

Mrs. Bush and her 23-year-old daughters, Barbara and Jenna, spent the weekend at the Madikwe Game Reserve on the South African-Botswana border….

The first lady’s staff asked photographers to refrain from shooting the twins as they boarded the plane in Gaborone, Botswana, for the flight to Cape Town, on grounds that they were not part of the official delegation.

****

In 2010 Judicial Watch released its list of ‘Washington’s ten Most Corrupt Politicians’ – the list included President Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Rahm Emanuel, Jesse Jackson, Jr, Barney Frank, Barbara Boxer and Maxine Waters.

It didn’t, for example, include Darrell Issa.

🙄

****

What can we conclude from all of this?

Well, two things:

(1) Laura Bush is a Republican and she’s white.

(2) Michelle Obama is a Democrat and she’s black.

That’s all, really.

08
Jul
11

african memories

27
Jun
11

more from africa

26
Jun
11

homeward bound

First lady Michelle Obama waves as she boards her plane in Gaborone, Botswana, at the end of her week long trip to Africa, June 26. The first lady left Botswana Sunday morning, she is due to arrive at the White House early Monday.

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See you all later today 😉

25
Jun
11

more images from botswana

Thank you N for the link to the photos – see more here

25
Jun
11

botswana, saturday (updated)

First lady Michelle Obama and daughter Sasha make an unscheduled stop at Borakanelo, a favorite local restaurant, in the village of Mochudi, Botswana, June 25

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First lady Michelle Obama, daughters Sasha and Malia, mother Marian Robinson, niece Leslie Robinson and nephew Avery Robinson during a safari in Madikwe Game Reserve

First lady Michelle Obama and daughters Sasha and Malia react as they see an elephant, off camera, during a safari in Madikwe Game Reserve

24
Jun
11

the first lady in africa

Three more videos from the White House YouTube channel:

And P found this one:

24
Jun
11

botswana

First lady Michelle Obama is greeted by traditional dancers as she arrives in Gaborone, Botswana, June 24

*****

…..painting a mural with teens at Botswana-Baylor Adolescent Center which offers support to teens with HIV, Gaborone, Botswana

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….comforting a woman overcome with emotion as she greeted her at a multi-generational women leaders luncheon at the Sanitas Tea Garden in Gaborone, Botswana

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First lady Michelle Obama meets with Botswana’s President Lt. Gen. Seretse Khama Ian Khama

First lady Michelle Obama stands with daughters Sasha and Malia as she talks with Ian Kirby of Mokolodi Game Reserve before having a private dinner in Gaborone, Botswana

20
Jun
11

a week in africa (video added)

First lady Michelle Obama holds a bouquet of flowers, and daughters Malia and Sasha are draped in blankets given to them upon landing in Pretoria, as they begin their week long trip to Africa

FIRST LADY MICHELLE OBAMA’S VISIT TO SOUTH AFRICA AND BOTSWANA

MONDAY, JUNE 20 – JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA

 First Lady Michelle Obama and her family will arrive at Waterkloof Air Force Base in Pretoria, South Africa.

TUESDAY, JUNE 21 – PRETORIA & JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA

Mrs. Obama will start her day by traveling to Pretoria, the capital of South Africa, where she will meet with President Zuma’s wife, Nompumelelo Ntuli-Zuma, at the official residence of the President.

Mrs. Obama will then remain in Pretoria where she will attend a reception with South African leaders organized by the U.S. Embassy

Mrs. Obama and her family will visit the Nelson Mandela Foundation in Johannesburg, meeting with Graca Machel, Former First Lady of Mozambique, and wife of former South African President Nelson Mandela, who will give them a tour of the Foundation and provide a private viewing of former President Mandela’s archives.

Finally, Mrs. Obama and her family will tour the Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 22 – JOHANNESBURG & CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA

In the morning, Mrs. Obama will travel to the Regina Mundi Church in Soweto, where she will deliver the keynote address to a U.S.-sponsored Young African Women Leaders Forum.

 Mrs. Obama will then visit the Hector Pieterson Memorial, honoring the twelve year-old boy who protested apartheid and was shot and killed by apartheid government police

In the afternoon, the Young African Women Leaders will be divided into three breakout sessions where they will discuss ideas and build connections with each other. Mrs. Obama will visit two of these sessions.

Mrs. Obama will complete her visit to Johannesburg by leading the final group of forum participants in a community service project at a community center.

In the evening, Mrs. Obama and her family will depart Johannesburg for Cape Town at Waterkloof Air Force Base in Pretoria.

Mrs. Obama and her family will arrive in Cape Town at Cape Town International Airport that evening.

THURSDAY, JUNE 23 – CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA

Mrs. Obama will begin her day in Cape Town by thanking United States Consulate employees and their families.

Then Mrs. Obama and her family will visit Robben Island – where former President Nelson Mandela was held for 18 of the 27 years he was imprisoned.

Mrs. Obama will invite students from area schools in historically disadvantaged communities for a day-long university “immersion experience” at the University of Cape Town. The University of Cape Town will provide the students with campus tours, discussions with University students and exposure to studying on campus. The students will attend a full day of activities at the University of Cape Town, concluding the day with a visit by Mrs. Obama, who will deliver brief remarks and answer their questions.

Mrs. Obama will complete her day with a visit to the Cape Town Soccer Stadium, site of the 2010 FIFA World Cup matches. There she will meet with Archbishop Desmond Tutu for a visit that will be covered by a pre-established press pool. Mrs. Obama will then meet with organizations dedicated to combating HIV/AIDS in South Africa, including using soccer as a means to convene and educate South African children about HIV/AIDS.

Finally, at the Cape Town Soccer Stadium, Mrs. Obama will join girls and boys from the Cape Town area, including its townships, on the soccer field for activities and drills.

FRIDAY, JUNE 24 – CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA & GABORONE, BOTSWANA

In the morning, Mrs. Obama and her family will depart Cape Town, South Africa for Gaborone, Botswana at Cape Town International Airport.

Mrs. Obama and her family will arrive in Gaborone, Botswana at Sir Seretse Khama International Airport.

Mrs. Obama will visit the Botswana Baylor Children’s Clinic Center of Excellence’s Teen Club that was assembled to teach leadership among teens and encourage young people to teach others about HIV/AIDS. Mrs. Obama will join Teen Club members in a service project at the site for the planned Botswana Baylor Adolescent Center.

Mrs. Obama will travel to the Presidency where she will meet with President Ian Khama.

SATURDAY, JUNE 25 – GABORONE, BOTSWANA

Mrs. Obama will begin her day by thanking U.S. Embassy employees and their families. Following this event, Mrs. Obama and her family will depart for private family safari events.

SUNDAY, JUNE 26 – GABORONE, BOTSWANA

Mrs. Obama and her family will depart Gaborone, Botswana at Sir Seretse Khama International Airport.

First lady Michelle Obama and her mother Marian Robinson look on as daughters Malia and Sasha are given blankets as they land in Pretoria

16
Jun
11

‘an interconnected world’




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