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Media Availability with Secretary Rumsfeld at the Honor Cordon with Latvian Minister of Defense Atis Slakteris

Presenter: Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld
July 31, 2006
             (prior to honor cordon)
 
            Q     How are you today?
           
            SEC. RUMSFELD: Above average.
           
            Q     (inaudible)
           
            SEC. RUMSFELD: I love it.
           
            Q     Any updates on Lebanon for me today?
           
            SEC. RUMSFELD: No, except our folks really did a terrific job in -- (inaudible). They got in there fast and they've gotten most everybody out that's available to be taken out -- indicated the desire to be out. And most of them have moved forward from Cyprus or Turkey or wherever they were taken and I feel quite good about it from that standpoint. Now, of course, they're helping on some humanitarian things.
 
(following cordon)
 
            Q     (inaudible) we know you're not -- (inaudible).
           
            SEC. RUMSFELD: Why do you do it?
           
            Q     Just for you.
           
            SEC. RUMSFELD: Just for me. Come on.
           
            Q     Any updates on -- (inaudible) -- any news items?
           
            SEC. RUMSFELD: No, I've been in meetings the whole day.
           
            Q     Any word on the U.S.' pending use of military force over -- for security purposes or anything else (inaudible)?
           
            SEC. RUMSFELD: We -- nothing that I'm aware of, no.
           
            Q     No requests for -- (inaudible) -- then?
           
            SEC. RUMSFELD:   No. 
           
            Q     (inaudible) 
           
            SEC. RUMSFELD: I'm not going to get in to that. I mean, this -- it is what it is, what's happened has happened, and the folks over there are sorting it out. And Condi and the president have both commented on it. That's good enough for our country. Good to see you all. 
           
            SEC. RUMSFELD: Why are you all not out there in the sun getting a suntan? 
           
            Q     Mr. Secretary, we'd like to -- (inaudible).
           
            SEC. RUMSFELD: Well, the minister and I just had a good visit and talked about the summit coming up later this year in his country, talked about NATO transformation, discussed the situation in Afghanistan, Iraq and Kosovo -- countries that the minister has troops in and is participating in.
           
            Q     Mr. Secretary, speaking of Iraq are you concerned that Iraqi Shi'ites could rally behind Hezbollah in Lebanon and perhaps cause more complications for the U.S. military in Iraq.
           
            SEC. RUMSFELD: You know, I don't think I'm going to get in to that. There are so many hypotheticals that could occur in our world that to be speculating about this just gives credence to that kind of speculation. 
           
            Q     Well, we've seen Muqtada al-Sadr today and Sistani voice support for Hezbollah. 
           
            SEC. RUMSFELD: They're all involved in Shi'a activities and I guess that I haven't seen these reports you're talking about. Okay.
           
            Q    (inaudible)
           
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