On Wednesday, June 21, the President will start his day by greeting the staffs of the various U.S. Missions in Austria, followed by a meeting with the President of Austria, Heinz Fischer. The President will then have a bilateral meeting with Austrian Chancellor and European Council President Wolfgang Schüssel. Upon conclusion of this bilateral meeting, the President will participate in the formal U.S.-EU summit meetings, and then have lunch with European leaders, Chancellor Schüssel, and European Commission President José Barroso. After lunch, the President will join the EU leaders for a press availability.
Later in the afternoon, the President will participate in a roundtable with foreign exchange students from various nations, to discuss with them the importance of freedom and democracy in advancing the future of their countries. The roundtable will be followed by a tour of the historic National Library, and a performance by the Vienna Boys Choir.
They fail to mention that being the supposed leader of the free world is so scary, that most of the inner city of Vienna will be inaccessible for the better part of Wednesday. They also fail to mention that sealing off and shutting down stores around St. Stephen’s Cathedral is due to Laura Bush’s intention to visit that very cathedral sometime during the day.
They fail to mention that apart from the apparent losses for museums, tourist attractions and the like, most of the commuters will have one hell of a time getting to work tomorrow, and will probably opt for taking a day off. For the president of the US.
And they fail to mention that even though they bring about 200 of their Secret Service agents, the estimated cost for sealing off and securing the area for the day will set the Austrian taxpayer back about 1 million Euros. For the president and his wife.
But hey, considering that the US have been entertaining a camp for “illegal combatants” for the last four years, and are scared shitless to let these people go because they could harm them from their war-ridden country somewhere in the desert, all these security measures seem way too subtle.