Iraq War 2002 - Briefing Rumsfeld & Myers Pt11/14 250073-20.mp4
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Uploaded on Feb 18, 2012
[2002 - Military Briefing: Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld & Gen Richard Myers, 04Mar02] Pt. 11 of 14
Continued... Myers: "Well, I think it's like we've said before. The Al Qaeda organization is - still has capabilities. And all the work that's going on, not just the military work, but the law enforcement work, the arrest(s), disrupting their financial streams & so forth - all a piece of this, & it goes - it's going on around the world. And a lot of that we don't see, we don't talk about, but it's just as important as this military operation.
Q: Mr. Secretary, you alluded to this in an earlier question about ever-changing information in an ongoing operation like this, for example. But what do you say to the argument that the American public has been denied an objective or unfiltered account of the war on terrorism because of Pentagon policies that tend to restrict reporter access to U.S. soldiers & their battles, as they're ongoing?
01:21:42 Rumsfeld: Well, I don't hear that from the American people, I hear it from very small numbers of people in the press. And there are people embedded in this activity, as I understand it. So I think it is not a fact. That is to say there are press people who are embedded in the activities that are taking place. This is one of the few situations where Special Forces are actually engaged in an activity where press people have been embedded with them.
Q: "But are they allowed --
Rumsfeld: "Just a minute, just minute. Let me finish my thought. And there have been press people embedded w/ other Special Force units but not particularly when they were actively engaged in a moving activity. Second, there have been press people embedded in ships & other activities. The - it seems to me that if - if I were trying to assess this in an objective, unbiased, "Rumsfeldian" way - (laughter) - I would step back & look at it & say, "Not bad." This is a most unusual conflict. It is not a set of battle lines, where Bill Malden & Ernie Pyle (sic) can be w/ troops for week after week after week as they move across Europe or even across islands in the Pacific. This is a notably different activity. It's terribly untidy. We have bent over backwards to see that every opportunity that we could imagine that press people could be connected to that they were connected to. And they have been. And I think there are a notable number of firsts in this case, from the standpoint of the press. Second, anyone who wants to in the press can get into Afghanistan & go anywhere they want. It's a free country. It's dangerous, & people are being killed, but it's a free country. Now we have done a lot to see that they're involved. Therefore, your question kind of surprises me, given the current situation. Maybe you weren't aware that they are embedded in this operation.
01:23:57 Q: "I was not. I was also thinking of the historical perspective of other wars, going back to both --
Rumsfeld: "Right. Right.
Q: "World War II and on up - and there was a lot of --
Q: "- contention about this early on. Continued..
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