14 JAN 91
GUIDELINES FOR NEWS MEDIA
News media personnel must carry and support any personal and professional gear they take with them,
including protective cases for professional equipment, batteries, cables, converters, etc.
Night OperationsLight discipline restrictions will be followed. The only approved light source is a
flashlight with a red lens. No visible light source, including flash or television lights, will be used when
operating with forces at night unless specifically approved by the on-scene commander.
Because of host-nation requirements, you must stay with your public affairs escort while on Saudi bases.
At other U.S. tactical or field locations and encampments, a public affairs escort maybe required because of
security, safely and mission requirements as determined by the host commander.
Casualty information, because of concern of the notification of the next of kin, is extremely sensitive.
By executive directive, next of kin of all military fatalities must be notified in person by a uniformed member
of the appropriate service. There have been instances in which the next of kin have first learned of the death
or wounding of a loved one though the news media. The problem is particularly difficult for visual media.
Casualty photographs showing a recognizable face, name tag or other identifying feature or item should not
be used before the next of kin have been notified. The anguish that sudden recognition at home can cause
far outweighs the news value of the photograph, film or videotape. News coverage of casualties in medical
centers will be in strict compliance with the instructions of doctors and medical officers.
To the extent that individuals in the news media seek access to the U.S. area of operation, the following
rule applies: Prior to or upon commencement of hostilities, media pools will be established to provide initial
combat coverage of U.S. forces. U.S. news media personnel present in Saudi Arabia will be given the
opportunity to join CENTCOM media pools, providing they agree to pool their products. News media
personnel who are not members of the official CENTCOM media pools will not be permitted into forward
areas, Reporters are strongly discouraged from attempting to link up on their own with combat units.
U.S. commanders will maintain extremely tight security throughout the operational area and will exclude
from the area of operation all unauthorized individuals.
For news media personnel participating in designated CENTVOM media pools:
1. Upon registering with the JIB, news media should contact their respective pool coordinator for an
explanation of pool operations.
2. In the event of hostilities, pool products will be subject to review before release to determine if they
contain sensitive information about military plans, capabilities, operation or vulnerabilities (see attached
ground rules) that would jeopardize the outcome of an operation or the safety of U.S. or coalition forces.
Material will be examined solely for its conformance to the attached ground rules, not for its potential to
express criticism or cause embarrassment. The public affairs escort officer on scene will review pool reports,
discuss ground rule problems with the reporter, and in the limited circumstances when no agreement can be
reached with a reporter about disputed materials, immediately send the disputed materials to JIB Dhahran
for review by the JIB Director and the appropriate news media representative. If no agreement can be reached,
the issue will be immediately forwarded to OASD(PA) for review with the appropriate bureau chief. The
ultimate decision on publication will be made by the originating reporters news organization.
3. Correspondents may not carry a personnel weapon.
Figure 4-5.Guidelines for news media during Operation DESERT SHIELD/STORM.