Monday, April 18, 2005
Going a little far: Some of these rules the military imposed on reporters covering the murder trial of Army Sgt. Hasan Akbar -- the man who is "accused" of rolling a grenade into a tent, killing two Americans -- are overboard.
I only point this article out, so I can tell a little story, based upon this rule:
I have to be escorted everywhere I go on Fort Bragg. When I go to the men's room, my military escort waits patiently outside.
When I covered Vandenberg Air Force Base for the Lompoc Record I was always escorted everywhere I went on base. They would usually trust me to drive off the base on my own, but otherwise I always had at least one public affairs officer attached to my hip.
And then there's the restroom. There's one building on VAFB that is "top secret." It has a conference room on the first floor where there were occasional news conferences. Elsewhere on the base, public affairs officers were figuratively attached to your hip. In this building it was more literal.
I had to go to the restroom once in this building.
The PAO didn't wait outside.
At least he didn't share the stall with me, but reporters should count their blessings.