Unlike the special-forces operations that launched attacks into Afghanistan
last year, the Pentagon said the media will be "embedded" among front-line
forces in the event of a war with Iraq.
Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman said, "We are going to maximize the
opportunity for reporters to be alongside military units. What better way to get
the truth out as to what's going on?"
Whitman noted that participation would undoubtedly include reporting ground
rules regarding security, but he said the Pentagon -- which recently began
training reporters for combat conditions at federal facilities in Quantico, Va. --
was confident that the restrictions would not impede either the media's or the
Media have been critical of the Pentagon for what they consider a lack of
real information regarding military reactions to the Sept. 11 attacks.
If the policy is enacted, especially to the satisfaction of naturally
skeptical journalists, it would represent a change from media access in just
about every U.S. conflict since Vietnam.