"The Army's Preemptive News Briefing" - Howard Kurtz - The Washington Post

"The Army's Preemptive News Briefing" - Howard Kurtz - The Washington Post

by: Howard Kurtz | publication date: February 24, 2007 | Publication: The Washington Post | pages: C1

". . . Col. Dan Baggio, the Army's chief of media relations, said Walter Reed's commander had already been thinking of briefing reporters on conditions at the medical center. But Baggio acknowledged that the timing was dictated by the upcoming Post stories, which ran Sunday and Monday and detailed inadequate care for wounded veterans.Priest, who reported the two-part series with Anne Hull, says she told an Army public affairs officer this week: 'How do you think this is going to affect our relationship? Do you think I'm going to be willing next time to give you that much time to respond, if you're going to turn around and tell my competitors?' . . ."

Before publishing the first article on the poor conditions at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, The Washington Post gave the Army six days to respond to its investigation. During these six days, Walter Reed held a press conference to brief other news outlets on the conditions of the hospital.

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