President Obama’s aides often use Flickr, the photo-sharing website, to distribute pictures of backstage moments that reinforce the White House message. The White House just uploaded this photograph, snapped in Rio de Janeiro at 9:30 this morning, of Obama, Chief of Staff Bill Daley and National Security Adviser Tom Donilon on a conference call about military operations in Libya.
(On the other end of the line, according to the Flickr post, were Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Secretary of Defense Bob Gates, Deputy National Security Advisor Denis McDonaugh and Gen. Carter Ham.)
Early headlines from this trip note the focus on Libya—"Obama Visits Brazil with Libya on His Mind" (Washington Post), "Obama’s Brazil Visit Overshadowed by Libya" (NPR). And it’s not as if Washington is a better place to talk on the phone than Rio. Understandably, the White House wants to avoid any perception that Obama’s eye is off the ball. Still, the other images coming from his trip today show Obama kicking a soccer ball with Brazilian children, which is sure to trigger some conservative fauxtrage.
For more on the Libyan intervention, check out this week’s lead Nation editorial.