Leaked Terror Memo Meant As Starting Point
By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Oct. 23, 2003 - The "global war on terrorism memo" dominated
a press conference at the Pentagon today.
The memo, leaked to USA Today, was meant as a starting point
for discussions with senior leaders in the Defense Department.
Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld told reporters he wrote the
memo after meeting with U.S. combatant commanders and discussing
the global war on terrorism with them.
"They reported what they're doing in the global war on terror," he
said. "I started taking everything they'd said, adding it up, and
saying to myself, 'Gee, have we got our eyes up off the ground
and across the horizon far enough? Are we looking out far enough
in a way that would enable us to think of ways and approaches that
might make us be able to do still better than we're currently doing?'"
He said he wrote down the ideas and sent the memo to Chairman
of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Air Force Gen. Richard B. Myers, Deputy
Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, JCS Vice Chairman Marine Gen.
Peter Pace and Defense Undersecretary for Policy Douglas Feith
with the idea of reading the memo and using it as a starting point
for long- range planning. "I re-read the memo in the paper and
thought, 'Not bad,'" Rumsfeld said.
The secretary said he has been asking questions like the ones
raised in the memo all his life, "and I probably will continue
Pentagon spokesman Larry Di Rita said the memo is perfectly in
keeping with the secretary's portfolio when he took the job at
Defense. "He was asked to take this job with the eye toward transforming
the department," Di Rita said before Rumsfeld came to the briefing
studio. "He has engaged the senior leadership of the department
to do that."
Di Rita and Joint Staff Operations chief Air Force Lt. Gen. Norton
Schwartz spoke about continuing operations in the global war on
Schwartz said the Iraqi border police are beginning to show their
worth. Border police detained 18 Iraqis attempting to enter Syria
north of Rabiya.
The 101st Airborne Division conducted raids against several weapons
caches, and troopers from the division found large amounts of high-explosive
rounds and fuses. They also captured the man believed to be responsible
for a major cache.
"In Baghdad, coalition forces conducted three simultaneous raids
against individuals suspected of placing improvised explosive devices
against coalition forces," Schwartz said. "Eight people were detained,
along with six AK-47s, numerous (rocket-propelled grenade) rounds,
grenades and 1.3 million in Iraqi dinars."
Along the Shatt al-Arab waterway, Operation Sweeney is having
a notable effect on smuggling. DoD officials said Marines and Iraqis
have captured more than 130 people along with barges, boats, petroleum
tankers, generators and fuel pumps and other paraphernalia associated
with smuggling operations.
In Afghanistan, Operation Mountain Viper continues near Kandahar
and near Orgun-E, and has resulted in the confiscation of more
than 1,000 82 mm mortar rounds, numerous rockets and smaller-caliber
Schwartz said enemy incidents in the Baathist Triangle area have
risen lately. He said some of the incidents may be a result of
"The 82nd Airborne (Division) has been focused on the Fallujah
and al-Ramadi area," he said. "That is where a lot of these attacks
have occurred. So the bottom line is there's a combination of things - some
elevation in the attacks by the enemy, but likewise . (in) our
tempo as well to take these guys out."