Key figures in the Obama administration met on the current al-Qaeda threat on Saturday while the president conducted an intensive golf fiesta at Andrews Air Force Base.
President Obama set off for the golf course at about 8 a.m., hoping to squeeze in as much play as possible before a scheduled departure to Camp David at 2:30 p.m.
Three all-male teams hit the golf course to mark the day before Obama’s 52nd birthday, including regulars Reggie Love and Marvin Nicholson, White House chef Sam Kass and college friend Wahid Hamid.
“Before departing this morning, the president was updated on a potential threat occurring in or emanating from the Arabian Peninsula by Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism Lisa Monaco. He will continue to be updated through the weekend,” a White House official told the press pool as they waited at the golf course food court.
After more than seven hours at play, Obama and some of his golf mates took Marine One from Andrews to Camp David for an overnight birthday party. Those who didn’t take the helicopter met up with the president via a van convoy up to the mountain retreat.
Hamid, Love, Kass and Laurent Delanney, another college friend, won the Obama Open, and thus got to ride in Marine One.
That evening the White House released a readout of administration officials who met Saturday on the elevated terror threat that resulted in a global travel alert and the temporary closure of some embassies in the Middle East.
“Early this week, the President instructed his National Security team to take all appropriate steps to protect the American people in light of a potential threat occurring in or emanating from the Arabian Peninsula. Given the nature of the potential threat, throughout the week, Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism Lisa Monaco has held regular meetings with relevant members of the interagency to ensure the U.S. Government is taking those appropriate steps,” the White House said.
Obama left it to National Security Adviser Susan Rice to chair the meeting “to further review the situation and follow-up actions.”