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Rumsfeld 'transition' office in Pentagon raising eyebrows

John Byrne
Published: Thursday January 25, 2007
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Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has left the Pentagon but not the Defense Department, reports Thursday's edition of the Washington Times, in a story which reveals that Bush's onetime Defense chief is now an unpaid consultant -- with classified access.

"On Jan. 4, Mr. Rumsfeld opened a government-provided transition office in Arlington and has seven Pentagon-paid staffers working for him," a Pentagon official told the paper.

The Times reported that the Pentagon lists Mr. Rumsfeld as a "nonpaid consultant," a classification needed to review secret and top-secret documents.

"Mr. Rumsfeld and his aides, who include close adviser Stephen Cambone, are sifting through the thousands of pages of documents generated during his tenure," the Times wrote. "The Pentagon official said former secretaries are entitled to a transition office to sort papers, some of which can be taken with them for a library, for archives or to write a book."

"The transition office has raised some eyebrows inside the Pentagon," the Times continues. "Some question the size of the staff, which includes two military officers and two enlisted men. They also ask why the sorting could not have been done from the time Mr. Rumsfeld resigned Nov. 8 to when he left the building Dec. 18."