June 17, 2008 —
The article in The (Colorado Springs) Gazette is incomplete and inaccurate and is based on a preliminary document that is classified, titled ”Statement of Facts.”
News reports do not contain the GAO’s final (classified) analysis and their recommendations for NORAD and USNORTHCOM action. Also missing are the commands' responses to the GAO's recommendations, which are classified.
The sensationalized accusation that military officials somehow misled Congress is false. The GAO draft report does not draw this conclusion and it is unfortunate that news reports have indicated otherwise. We have conducted extensive classified and unclassified informational briefings, tours and meetings with appropriate Congressional leaders.
Again, press reporting on this story is based on only one element of the GAO’s analysis. In fact, the commands have already implemented and are in the process of implementing appropriate security and protection measures.
This report is still in draft and we will submit official comments to the GAO as required.
The bottom line: The new command center at Peterson AFB significantly enhances our ability to respond to the full spectrum (air, land, maritime, space and cyber) of security threats to North America.