Over the years, many have tried to prevent John Kerry from inserting his foot in his mouth and failed. Today, none other than Kerry himself achieved just that, both literally and metaphorically. America's Secretary of State went biking in the French Alps when he hit a curb, and broke his femur. Not to worry: he is expected to make a full recovery and was in good spirits, according to John Kirby. And just to make sure of that, US taxpayers will be invoiced a little over a million so that a specially equipped airplane picks up the SecState "to ensure he remains comfortable and stable throughout the flight."
The accident took place in Scionzier, France, some 40km (25 miles) south-east of the Swiss border.
The Dauphine Libere, a local newspaper, said Kerry fell near the beginning of his ride to the famed mountain pass called the Col de la Colombiere, which has been a route for the Tour de France more than a dozen times.
It appeared Kerry is just as biking challenged as he is at negotiating international politics: according to the AP, he broke his leg after striking a curb, and scrapped the rest of a four-nation trip that included an international conference on combating the Islamic State group.
"Paramedics and a physician were on the scene with the secretary's motorcade at the time of the accident," the state department said.
"The secretary is stable and never lost consciousness, his injury is not life-threatening and he is expected to make a full recovery," Kirby said in a statement.
This is not the first time the 71 year old Kerry has seemingly risked his life by going on a bike ride: Kerry's cycling rides have become a regular occurrence on his trips. He often takes his bike with him on the plane and was riding that bicycle Sunday.
During discussions in late March and early April between world powers and Iran, Kerry took several bike trips during breaks. Those talks were in Lausanne, Switzerland, and led to a framework agreement.
Even better: the "threat" of loose gravel had been telegraphed prior to Kerry's big ride:
Right around the time of his fall, a Twitter feed about local driving conditions warned of the danger due to gravel along the pass. But U.S. officials said there was no gravel on the road where the accident occurred. According to the newspaper, some Haute Savoie officials were with Kerry at the time, including the head of the region.
The top diplomat, however, was above such petty warnings. And now, US taxpayers will have to shelve out a couple extra million because the banged up SecState is now has to fly back to the US aboard a specially eqipped plane "to ensure he remains comfortable and stable throughout the flight," Kirby said. "Its use is nothing more than a prudent medical step on the advice of physicians."
Why the need to spend millions more? Because Kerry's regular plane was returning to the United States carrying much of his staff and reporters who accompanied on the trip. And now, that plane too will have to fly back again. One way trip cost to US taxpayers: a little over $1 million.
As a result of Kerry's dramatic self-inflicted injury, the world just may be clueless how to defend itself against the persistent, ubiquotous threat of a US-created ISIS.
The prospect of a lengthy rehabilitation could hamper the nuclear talks and other diplomatic endeavors. Even if Kerry does not need surgery, it was not immediately known when he could fly again after returning to the United States.
Kerry has been the lead negotiator in several marathon sessions with Iran going back to 2013. The injury could affect other potential trips, such as one to the Cuban capital to raise the flag at a restored U.S. Embassy.
As for the current trip, Kerry had planned to travel to Madrid on Sunday for meetings with Spain's king and prime minister, before spending two days in Paris for an international gathering to combat IS.
He will participate in the Paris conference remotely, Kirby said.
At least the Iran "nuclear deal" which was going nowhere fast, and was certainly not going to have a conclusion by June 30, will have an official excuse to be extended indefinitely once again.
As for the added expenditures from the cost of the Kerry emergency "airlift" which the US government could have used to actually benefit humanity in a myriad of other ways, just consider it a boost to double-seasonally adjusted GDP.