Boccardi warns of war-access restrictions

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Associated Press president and chief executive Lou Boccardi expressed
concern that the United States could go to war against Iraq without any
reporters accompanying troops.

'We're talking about access and doing all we can to get access,' Boccardi
told Cable News Network anchorwoman Judy Woodruff while attending the annual meeting of the Associated Press Managing
Editors last week.

'We'd like to be able to decide where we think it would be useful for a
reporter to go' and not be forced to cover the war from the Pentagon briefing
room.

Journalists have complained in the past year of Pentagon restrictions on
access to soldiers in the field in Afghanistan.

Noting public support for press restrictions during conflicts, Boccardi suggested that the media needs to do a better job educating people about the First Amendment.

Boccardi's comments came as news executives lamented to Broadcasting & Cable that the Iraqi
government has hinted at plans to expel all foreign journalists.

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