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Rumsfeld Acknowledges Importance of Hearing Troops' Concerns

One day after hearing grievances from American troops in Kuwait heading to Iraq, U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld has reacted positively, saying it is the job of officials to listen and act.

Mr. Rumsfeld, who was in India Thursday, said the questions by the troops covered a wide spectrum and that only a few were difficult.

Some of the servicemen asked the defense secretary why their vehicles were not adequately protected. Others complained about deployments being extended, even though they were eligible to leave the military.

At the White House, President Bush said the concerns of the troops are being addressed. He said he did not blame the soldiers for raising the issue, saying he would have asked Mr. Rumsfeld the same question if he was a soldier fighting overseas.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and Reuters.