October 26, 2004


Just when you think things can't get worse for CBS News, Captain Ed reports:

CBS Reported Suspicious Powder At Al Qaqaa In April 2003

Alert CQ reader Samuel Silver sent me this article from the archives of CBS News -- the same organization that helped prepped NYTrogate with the New York Times -- which shows that the Third Infantry Division had reached Al Qaqaa and discovered thousands of vials of a mysterious powdered explosive by April 3, 2003

With all of the pressure on the Bush administration to find WMD, does anyone seriously think for a moment that they left Al Qaqaa without checking for UNSCOM and/or IAEA seals? From the description that CBS gave at the time, the Army took a very close look at the materiel at Al Qaqaa:

The senior U.S. official, based in Washington and speaking on condition of anonymity, said the material was under further study. The site is enormous and U.S. troops are still investigating it for potential weapons of mass destruction, the official said.

"Initial reports are that the material is probably just explosives, but we're still going through the place," the official said. ...

The facility had been identified by the International Atomic Energy Agency as a suspected chemical, biological and nuclear weapons site. U.N. inspectors visited the plant at least nine times, including as recently as Feb. 18.

The idea that various Army units showed up at the weapons facility and strolled around a few minutes before moving up the road to Baghdad, leaving the lights on and the front door unlocked, looks more and more ridiculous. The Army knew very well what it had found, and it searched the bunkers carefully looking for the most dangerous and high-priority items.

Shame on CBS for not even checking its own archives in order to research their hit piece on Bush. Shame also on the NY Times for not reviewing the embeds for the units in the area during the invasion to verify the contemporaneous reporting. Even if one wants to write a hit piece, doing the proper research should be a basic part of the job.

Shame on the Kerry campaign for impunging the reputation and professionalism of the 3ID and 101st. Shame on John Kerry, for running with an opportunistic story without a through vetting, especially after the CBS memo scandal. If this is any indication of his ability to discern intel and command judgement, he's not fit for chief dog catcher, let alone CINC.

Posted by feste at October 26, 2004 11:10 PM | TrackBack

One question:

Don't the news organizations mentioned here give a fig about the honor and integrity of the embedded reporters who got these stories for them (and the people of America and the world) as the war was raging? Because it sure looks like certain folks in these companies are ignoring or impugning their reports and the information they collected firsthand on the scene.

Posted by: Jersey Dave at October 27, 2004 08:36 AM
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