Cold War returns to White House for a day

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Washington (CNN) – It was what diplomats might call a “frank exchange of views” Thursday as White House spokesman Robert Gibbs got into a Cold War-style tiff with a Russian reporter about whether American freedoms go too far and may have led to the tragic shooting in Tucson.

In one of the most surreal moments I have ever seen in nearly seven years covering the beat, Andrei Sitov of the Itar-Tass News Agency pressed Gibbs at his daily briefing about whether “the quote, unquote “freedom” of a deranged mind to react in a violent way is also American” like the freedom of speech and the right to assembly.

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