Katie Couric, with her Flip cam, used her interview skills on some of the other members of the traveling press who accompanied Defense Secretary Gates on a recent Middle East trip. Couric got a few peers to open up about why they “love the Pentagon beat” and the like.

Also, the Washington Post’s Greg Jaffe confessed: “I took my eye off it like everyone else” (“it” being Afghanistan, when Iraq was the major story). Talking about previously covering Homeland Security and the Justice Department, the AP’s Laura Jakes described how “in Washington you sit around sometimes and you write about things where you’ve never been on the ground.”

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Liz Cox Barrett is a writer at CJR.