Hush Hush

Gates Tightens Military Media Rules

To prevent future military men from pulling a McChrystal, Defense Secretary Robert Gates has tightened the reins when it comes to media. In a three-page memo released Friday, Gates outlined new rules for the military’s interaction with the press. “I have said many times that we must strive to be as open, accessible, and transparent as possible,” he wrote. “At the same time, I am concerned that the department has grown lax in how we engage with the media, often in contravention of established rules and procedures.” Gates then laid out the specifics: All top-level Pentagon and military leaders must now notify the Defense Department’s assistant secretary “prior to interviews or any other means of media and public engagement with possible national or international implications,” for example. Also, not surprisingly, “leaking of classified information is against the law, cannot be tolerated and will, when proven, lead to the prosecution of those found to be engaged in such activity.”