A small contingent of reporters accompanied President Obama on his surprise trip to Afghanistan yesterday. The trip’s pool report, filed Josh Gerstein of Politico, says that pool members were briefed on the trip Sunday “on an off-the-record basis with the customary tell-only-one-editor rule.”

Pool reporters were assembled at Andrews Air Force Base late Monday evening. “It was a scene from a spy novel,” pool producer Richard Coolidge of ABC News writes:

A little after 9:30 p.m. ET, I arrived at a back gate of Joint Base Andrews.  No guard or intercom, I just drove up and it opened. I was in. The security guards verified my identity and I made my way to the rendezvous point. Typically, I would meet traveling White House press aides at the base passenger terminal, but not tonight. Very few people knew what we were doing there, so we met in a dimly lit parking lot.

Our bags were screened and we gave up all our electronics — laptops, mobile phones, cameras, anything that might have tracking software — and put them into bins. Read more