New York, April 14, 2003—In response to a March 6 letter from the Committee to Protect Journalists to U.S. secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, Victoria Clarke, assistant secretary of Defense for public affairs said:
“We share your desire to have news reported from the battlefield that is unfettered, timely and accurate, and we have made every effort to ensure that is the case.
But we also have an obligation to safeguard our military personnel. In certain cases, such as reporting on ongoing or future operations, we reserve the right to impose embargoes, but never to block coverage altogether. I am sure you will agree that this is entirely reasonable given the instantaneous nature of news in this age.”