We obtained a copy of Defense SecretaryDonaldH.Rumsfeld’sfinal “snowflake,”ashisdemandingmemoranda to subordinates are called. TheDec.15memowasaddressedto all Pentagon personnel, both military and civilian.
“Over the past six years, thousandsofthesememoshavefallen— sometimes in blizzards and flurries and sometimes in cold and lonely isolation,” Mr. Rumsfeld stated, noting that despite the blanketing there were many who never received one and others who even requested them.
“This snowflake is especially for them,”hewrote.“It’smessageistypically, to the point: Thank you.”
For the bureaucrats and others who thought they could “run out the clock” and avoid answering a snowflake because of the secretary’s departure,Mr.Rumsfeldwarnedthat “you have not been forgotten!”
He then granted a general amnesty for any unanswered snowflake“inthespiritoftheseason” as his last official act.
Defense officials say that Mr. Rumsfeld also will keep offices outside the Pentagon to assist in the ongoing transition. So he may still blow snowflakes, although no longer on secretary of defense letterhead.
Bill Gertz and Rowan Scarborough are Pentagon reporters. Mr. Gertz can be reached at 202/636-3274 or by e-mail at email@example.com. Mr. Scarborough can be reached at 202/636-3208 or by e-mail. at firstname.lastname@example.org.