Breaking: TNR returns serve re Beauchamp Updated

posted at 3:38 pm on August 10, 2007 by Bryan

Not much new ground broken:

For several weeks now, questions have been raised about Scott Beauchamp’s Baghdad Diarist “Shock Troops.” While many of these questions have been formulated by people with ideological agendas, we recognize that there are legitimate concerns about journalistic accuracy.

Um-hm. Attack the “ideological agendas” first, facts second. That’s been TNR’s MO during this entire episode.

As for “journalistic integrity,” what about using vague, general questions asked of unnamed experts to attempt to back up very specific and dubious allegations? Is that journalistic integrity, or an attempt to bury inconveniences?

Indeed, we continue to investigate the anecdotes recounted in the Baghdad Diarist. Unfortunately, our efforts have been severely hampered by the U.S. Army. Although the Army says it has investigated Beauchamp’s article and has found it to be false, it has refused our–and others’–requests to share any information or evidence from its investigation. What’s more, the Army has rejected our requests to speak to Beauchamp himself, on the grounds that it wants “to protect his privacy.”

Elsewhere, a named Army source (Maj Steven Lamb) has reportedly said that Beauchamp is free to speak with anyone about this. TNR doesn’t name anyone in its “protect his privacy” statement. Should we trust them?

At the same time the military has stonewalled our efforts to get to the truth, it has leaked damaging information about Beauchamp to conservative bloggers. Earlier this week, The Weekly Standard’s Michael Goldfarb published a report, based on a single anonymous “military source close to the investigation,” entitled “Beauchamp Recants,” claiming that Beauchamp “signed a sworn statement admitting that all three articles he published in the New Republic were exaggerations and falsehoods–fabrications containing only ‘a smidgen of truth,’ in the words of our source.”

Stonewalled? Leaked? That’s a loaded set of words, TNR. You’d best be able to back it up

Here’s what we know: On July 26, Beauchamp told us that he signed several statements under what he described as pressure from the Army.

That “pressure” was likely the knowledge that he could get slapped with judicial punishment for lying to investigators, who had likely already found out from Beauchamp’s mates or from the lack of a stratified mass grave as he described that his reports were made up. Or is he now accusing the Army of squeezing him unjustly? I’m not saying that that can’t happen, but if that’s what he’s going with, he had better be able to back it up.

He told us that these statements did not contradict his articles.

He also misreported the melted woman tale as having taken place in Iraq and being a result of war stress, when he now says it happened in Kuwait before he ever got to the war (and there’s no solid evidence that the woman ever existed). You have a reason right there to disbelieve him, TNR? You’d be wise to take it.

Moreover, on the same day he signed these statements for the Army, he gave us a statement standing behind his articles, which we published at tnr.com. Goldfarb has written, “It’s pretty clear the New Republic is standing by a story that even the author does not stand by.” In fact, it is our understanding that Beauchamp continues to stand by his stories and insists that he has not recanted them.

So which is it — are you in contact with him or are you not? Or is the “continues to stand by his stories” statement reflective of not having heard from him since he is said to have recanted? If he sent the “stands by” statement that wasn’t made under oath before signing the reported recantation that was under oath, which should we believe?

Scott Beauchamp is currently a 24-year-old soldier in Iraq who, for the past 15 days, has been prevented by the military from communicating with the outside world, aside from three brief and closely monitored phone calls to family members. Our investigation has not thus far uncovered factual evidence (aside from one key detail) to discount his personal dispatches. And we cannot simply dismiss the corroborating accounts of the five soldiers with whom we spoke.

Square-backed bullets? Iraqi police being the only people in Iraq using Glocks? And where’s the stratified children’s mass grave? Forget the he said-he said and the “ideological agendas” and just address the facts for once. Is that too much to ask?

TNR, given its history has a special obligation to ascertain whether its diarist wrote truth or fables. TNR doesn’t need to hear from him in order to prove him right or wrong. TNR doesn’t need to insinuate that the Army that Beauchamp smeared is “stonewaling” its “re-reporting.” TNR doesn’t need to blame the Army for Beauchamp’s silence. TNR can address the allegation of whether its fact checker treated the Bradley manufacturer’s spokesman as has been described, linked above. TNR can ascertain whether there’s a stratified mass grave as Beauchamp described. TNR can look into whether the Iraqi police are the only group using Glocks in Iraq, as Beauchamp asserted. TNR has done none of those things, while continuing to insist that its problems are because the Army is rightly investigating allegations made by one of its troops against others, in public and from a war zone.

And TNR has yet to address the ethics violations that those right wing ideologues at the Poynter Institute and CJR described to that right wing outfit the Associated Press and published in that right wing rag, the Washington Post.

Vacation won’t last forever.

More: Over at Ace’s, commenter AD makes a good point.

Wait a minute – so now they’re saying Beauchamp was pressured into signing the statements Goldfarb talked about . . . but these weren’t contradictary? Why would the Army pressure Goldfarb to sign statements that merely backed up everything he said?

They’re starting to try to nudge in the excuse of “wait, he was pressured!” without wanting to admit the Weekly Standard may have been right.

Update: Trolling Ace’s comments again, wondering why this commenter didn’t leave said comment here as well as there, but never mind that. It’s just a good comment — Nordbuster, #94.

TNR’s hurling of unfounded accusations at the Army — that they’re “stonewalling” and “leaking,” that they “pressured” Beauchamp to sign statements and are preventing him from communicating with the outside world — is the real “Telling Clew,” Ace.

The whole point of “Shock Troops” was to demonize the U.S. military, right? And now that their little story has proven to be credibility-deficient, how do the editors of TNR defend themselves? By demonizing the military!

TNR’s editors are pandering to the prejudices of their anti-war readership (and ownership) by portraying the dispute over Beauchamp’s factually challenged writing as a titanic struggle between those bloodthirsty neocon hawks at the Pentagon and the tribunes of Truth at TNR.

Liberals of a certain age (namely, the age of Marty Peretz) have a deeply ingrained receptivity to the idea of the U.S. Army as compulsively dishonest.

Nordbuster is on to something.

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

They’re really trying to pass the buck here. Pathetic.

High Desert Wanderer on August 10, 2007 at 3:49 PM

No mention of the recent statements from their expert….

TheBigOldDog on August 10, 2007 at 3:50 PM

You know, at first I was satisfied that another “Winter Soldier” had been confronted and debunked, but not anymore. TNR continues to cry foul and insist that the stories are true and they are sticking by their man, fine. I would have thought CBS would have a case study and a lesson to all but in the words of Forrest Gump, “Stupid is as stupid does”.
Now I won’t satisfied with anything less then TNR declaring bankruptcy and closing up shop for good. It is time to direct attention not to STB but rather to this Foer character and see just how hot it has got to get in that kitchen before they leave.

LakeRuins on August 10, 2007 at 3:51 PM

Why is it so hard for libs to admit wrongdoing and take responsibility for their actions?

PBoilermaker on August 10, 2007 at 3:53 PM

This whole thing just reeks of Rather. One week from now, they’re going to be apologizing for the lack of integrity in the research process, blah blah blah mea culpa blah blah blah, but then stating that it’s true anyways.

StoutRepublican on August 10, 2007 at 4:01 PM

Here’s what we know: On July 26, Beauchamp told us that he signed several statements under what he described as pressure from the Army.

He told us that these statements did not contradict his articles.

As a commenter over at Ace’s pointed out, why exactly did the Army pressure him to make statements that ‘did not contradict his articles”?

That makes no sense.

Drew on August 10, 2007 at 4:04 PM

They are so full of sh*t.

baldilocks on August 10, 2007 at 4:07 PM

TNR can address the allegation of whether its fact checker treated the Bradley manufacturer’s spokesman as has been described

That would be interesting to find out, given that the Baghdad Diarrhist is married to a TNR researcher.

Can they also address the pre-traumatic stress syndrome?

You are right. There are so many aspects to this story that can be covered without interviewing the author.

This whole episode must be seen through to the very end.

Nosferightu on August 10, 2007 at 4:08 PM

TNR ought to just give up and admit they screwed up. At this point, every bit of resistance is making it worse for themselves.

Bad Candy on August 10, 2007 at 4:09 PM

You want a good laugh. Read this story about Mr. Fredrick Foer.

Foer doesn’t even dispute that the media have become more powerful or that the there should be watchdogs and journalistic policemen. Foer says that Kurtz’s “true sins are ones of omission.” In other words, Foer doesn’t (and shouldn’t) mind the job Kurtz does. Instead, he is really upset that Kurtz can’t be all things to all people. This strikes me as a lackluster critique. If forced to choose between having a media reporter who exposes malfeasance and one who finds the hidden “beauty” in a Prime Time Live on dirty hotel linens, I’ll take the muckraker.

But what about these sins of omission? That’s where the interesting argument is.

LakeRuins on August 10, 2007 at 4:10 PM

Though the statement does heighten the pressure on the Army, partly through direct challenge of its integrity and good faith, you still have to read between and around the lines – as is usually necessary with of these TNR Papal Bulls.

The key paragraph of the full statement, key in the sense of potentially moving the whole story forward, isn’t quoted above. It’s the last one, which, cutting to the chase, closes as follows:

We once again invite the Army to make public Beauchamp’s statements and the details of its investigation–and we ask the Army to let us (or any other media outlet, for that matter) speak to Beauchamp. Unless and until these things happen, we cannot fairly assess any of these reports about Beauchamp–and therefore have no reason to change our own assessment of Beauchamp’s work. If the truth ends up reflecting poorly on our judgment, we will accept responsibility for that. But we also refuse to rush to judgment on our writer or ourselves.

Translation: We’re sitting tight until and unless Beauchamp himself speaks, or, possibly, in the absence of direct new communications from Beauchamp, the revelation of Beauchamp’s answers to Army investigators, under Beauchamp and the Army’s joint authorization.

In the last two sentences, the editors for the first time admit the possibility that the whole fiasco may “reflect… poorly on [their] judgment,” and that they may have to “accept responsibility.” The very last sentence underlines that they see their own reputations very much at risk.

It comes pretty close to saying that, if STB pipes up and says that all those “idelogically motivated” critics are right, Foer is ready to submit his resignation.

CK MacLeod on August 10, 2007 at 4:13 PM

The best part of this is due to the infighting here, no conspirisist will be able to call cover up (famous last words) or at least the lefties won’t be able to use it in their talking points.

- The Cat

MirCat on August 10, 2007 at 4:13 PM

I have no doubt that he signed statements under pressure — the pressure of getting caught and punished for lying. I would think that in the army it would be routine to get signed statements from witnesses when an investigation is begun so as to avoid Nifonging someone. After all in the army you just know you WILL be held accountable for false accusations.

So what is the big deal and why is TNR trying to make this seem illogical and wrong somehow?

If your telling the truth then why does it matter that you had to sign statements.
DKK

LifeTrek on August 10, 2007 at 4:15 PM

Here is Foer berating the editors at the NY Times for their handling of the Judith Miller case At the Huff’N'Puffin Post no less.

Unfortunately, it took Keller an eternity to understand this. At every turn, in his quest to burnish his anti-Raines, nice-guy bona fides, he gave Miller the benefit of the doubt. He failed to adequately flay her for WMD coverage; he failed to keep her banished from the WMD beat; he failed to minimize her embarrassment to the paper in the Fitzgerald case. Instead of disciplining a rogue, untrustworthy reporter, he preceded to defend her in the press, to display his generous spirit.

LakeRuins on August 10, 2007 at 4:17 PM

Bad Candy on August 10, 2007 at 4:09 PM

Not really. They have nothing left to lose. If they can give the Left the slightest thing to hang their hat on, they will survive.

TheBigOldDog on August 10, 2007 at 4:18 PM

The New Republic
All the news that’s fit to make up.

Send us your opinions, fantasies, wishes and pipe dreams, so we can print them as truth.

Hening on August 10, 2007 at 4:18 PM

LakeRuins on August 10, 2007 at 4:17 PM

Nice find.

TheBigOldDog on August 10, 2007 at 4:19 PM

Come on TNR. Just apologize already. The more time you waste, the more ridiculous you guys look.

SoulGlo on August 10, 2007 at 4:21 PM

The Army cannot legally release Beauchamp’s statement because it falls under the Privacy Act. Beauchamp has to do this himself when he gets off of punishment. Foer even mentions this in his little tirade against the Army. I thought privacy was one of the Left’s gods.

baldilocks on August 10, 2007 at 4:22 PM

Franklin needs to stick to what he does best, which judging by search results on his name, is reporting on soccer and writing books about soccer.

LakeRuins on August 10, 2007 at 4:25 PM

baldilocks on August 10, 2007 at 4:22 PM

All the Army needs to do is ask him for permission. If he says no, then they issue a Press Release saying so – “Private Beauchamp has requested that his statement remain confidential” – Serves the same purpose.

TheBigOldDog on August 10, 2007 at 4:25 PM

This will play well with the average TNR reader. They will claim that this is an Army coverup and that ex-PFC Beauchamp has been ‘silenced’ and is now unable to speak on the topic anymore for fear of retribution. Expect to see Pat Tillman dug up over and over again as proof of a conspiracy to hide the truth.

BohicaTwentyTwo on August 10, 2007 at 4:29 PM

They don’t know anything about the Army. If they did, none of this would have happened. They just write that he was pressured and don’t think anyone will question that. They’re sure the Army does that all the time! I mean, come on, it’s the ARMY. They pressue poor little Privates and run over dogs every day, right?

MamaAJ on August 10, 2007 at 4:29 PM

Additional thought on the signed statement: You make a sworn statement every time you file your taxes and sign them (even electronically). DKK

LifeTrek on August 10, 2007 at 4:31 PM

There are so many aspects to this story that can be covered without interviewing the author.

In fact, relying on the author is what got them into this predicament. The only way to verify one source is with another, independent source of information. You don’t verify someone is telling the truth by asking them if they’re tellling the truth.

taznar on August 10, 2007 at 4:38 PM

Bryan – What I want to know is, if TNR (and Beauchamp’s family) have not been allowed to talk to him, how can they claim that he was pressured into signing a statement?

They can think he was pressured. They can hope he was pressured. But, they can’t state it as a fact if they’ve had no opportunity to talk to Beauchamp and ask him about the statement (which, at first, they claimed had never even been signed).

JadeNYU on August 10, 2007 at 4:38 PM

Wait a minute – so now they’re saying Beauchamp was pressured into signing the statements Goldfarb talked about . . . but these weren’t contradictary? Why would the Army pressure Goldfarb to sign statements that merely backed up everything he said?

Hypothetically, STB could claim he was “pressured” into admitting that the misconduct he described actually happened, with the possibility tht he and his “buddies” would be punished for it.

The problem with that is the Army investigation concluded what STB’s allegations were false. So if he doubled down to the investigators, he would have put himself in much greater jeopardy by signing what they concluded was a false statement. We know he’s getting the lowest form of punishment, which implies that didn’t happen. And brings you full circle, because investigators generally do not get people to make exculpatory statements.

Karl on August 10, 2007 at 4:49 PM

pre-traumatic stress syndrome

That’s awesome, Nosferightu.

mikeyboss on August 10, 2007 at 4:55 PM

Additional thought on the signed statement: You make a sworn statement every time you file your taxes and sign them (even electronically). DKK

LifeTrek on August 10, 2007 at 4:31 PM

Yes, but the tax forms don’t have that little “Privacy Act 1974″ blurb at the bottom.

TheBigOldDog on August 10, 2007 at 4:25 PM

That sounds like a good idea.

baldilocks on August 10, 2007 at 4:59 PM

Bryan – What I want to know is, if TNR (and Beauchamp’s family) have not been allowed to talk to him, how can they claim that he was pressured into signing a statement?

They can think he was pressured. They can hope he was pressured. But, they can’t state it as a fact if they’ve had no opportunity to talk to Beauchamp and ask him about the statement (which, at first, they claimed had never even been signed).

JadeNYU on August 10, 2007 at 4:38 PM

Exactly.

mikeyboss on August 10, 2007 at 5:02 PM

No, they said he had brief, monitored calls with family members.

LOL, they are such losers that when they say family memberS, I just assume that it will end up being only his wife.

MamaAJ on August 10, 2007 at 5:09 PM

I suspect all the information coming to TNR is going from Beauchamp to Elspeth to Foer. With that sort of chain of information, you’ve got to be concerned about the spin Beauchamp puts on the story to his wife, and the subsequent spin on the story Elspeth transmits to Foer.

Foer’s stonewalling because he has nothing. Rather than proving that his story is true, he’s only proven that it could be true, and now he’s demanding that the Army prove that it’s false.

That doesn’t smell like journalistic integrity.

geoff on August 10, 2007 at 5:29 PM

TNR is lying. And they are digging themselves in deeper with every utterance.

Franklin Foer is the 2007 version of Steve Glass. A liar, pure and simple. But that’s what liberals do — “lie for sport” (an Ann Coulterism).

And here’s the fun part. SHOULD BoChump publicly recant his sworn statement, he’ll be admitting that he committed perjury by admitting that he lied to investigators when he admitted he was embellishing facts.

So go ahead, BoChump. Admit to comitting perjury as well.

georgej on August 10, 2007 at 5:33 PM

At the same time the military has stonewalled our efforts to get to the truth, it has leaked damaging information about Beauchamp to conservative bloggers.

Heh… quite a statement, especially coming from a pack of left leaning pseudo-intellectuals losers who have elevated verbal masonry to an art form.

It’s hard, getting taken on a ride… again…

But it happens, TNR needs to enter the acceptance phase… not all publications, no matter how lofty their ambitions, are meant to be taken seriously.

Accept it, run with it, The Weekly World News may have the market cornered on insane shadowy conspiracies at the moment, but TNR is closing in fast. Don’t fight it, flow with it…

elgeneralisimo on August 10, 2007 at 5:33 PM

Why would they come clean now? It’s too late to appease the people who are disgusted by their actions, and it would just enrage their boosters.

Jim Treacher on August 10, 2007 at 5:34 PM

Beauchamp is simply following TNR’s questionable journalistic ethic. TNR takes a grain of fact and expounds upon that with speculation. So why would they find any fault with “Shock Troops?”

If it’s in print, it must be true.

They’re clueless.

BTW, what schools of journalism did the TNR editors attend? I want to avoid these schools.

desertdweller on August 10, 2007 at 5:37 PM

The Looney Left does not care about the truth they just want a story that supports their Blame America First meme. This guy will be a hero for the LL once he returns, just like JFK was back in the 70′s even though both are nothing more than liars who hate their own country. Pretty sad of them but even more so of those who lap this crap up and use it to support their misguided hatred of their own country despite all of the empirical evidence of their lies.

oilbertan on August 10, 2007 at 5:46 PM

TNR and PTSD
The literary term is “hubris”.
I call it pride.
TNR “really believed that their reporter was the real thing. They did not anticipate the devastating assault on his reported facts and integrity.
TNR is in a fugue state.
Rope-a-dope is the best they can do, and that’s a pretty good strategery given the short attention-span of their readers.
Randy

williars on August 10, 2007 at 5:59 PM

BTW:

Here’s what we know: On July 26, Beauchamp told us that he signed several statements under what he described as pressure from the Army.

Oh, really? Shouldn’t everyone who has been pursuing this story now be asking the Army for comment on this new allegation?

Karl on August 10, 2007 at 6:43 PM

Plus there’s this:

Moreover, on the same day he signed these statements for the Army, he gave us a statement standing behind his articles, which we published at tnr.com

And TNR put its own preface on his statement:

As we’ve noted in this space, some have questioned details that appeared in the Diarist “Shock Troops,” published under the pseudonym Scott Thomas. According to Major Kirk Luedeke, a public affairs officer at Forward Operating Base Falcon, a formal military investigation has also been launched into the incidents described in the piece.

Isn’t it slightly odd that TNR does not say that they heard about the investigation from STB?

Karl on August 10, 2007 at 7:16 PM

“What’s more, the Army has rejected our requests to speak to Beauchamp himself, on the grounds that it wants “to protect his privacy.”

OK, first of all, I thought the guy’s wife worked for TNR. So I’m pretty sure they can’t “stonewall” her.

And even if that weren’t the case, TNR was certainly in regular contact with Beauchamp before. If HE quit talking to THEM, then that fits perfectly with everything the military has been saying. But, as always, Occam’s razor is the worst enemy of liberal conspiracy theorists.

But, even if we assume that everything TNR ever said is absolutely true (even the claims that make no sense and contradict each other) what the heck difference does it make whether the Army actually did put Beauchamp in a dungeon somewhere?

The average American personally knows or is directly related to at least a few military personnel. And if you just take that to one degree of separation, the average American could probably get in contact with DOZENS of active duty soldiers.

But now TNR – which claims to be a news gathering organization – is whining because its “sole contact” with the US military has been severed.

There are only two explanations for this, and I don’t know which is worse:

1) TNR is lying, and they have close relationships with lots of brave people in the military who literally would not lie to save their lives; but none of them are saying anything like what Beauchamp said, or

2) TNR is telling the truth, and nobody else who works for them even knows anyone WHO KNOWS ANYONE in the military.

I suspect the explanation is a weird combination of those two things. Of course no one who’s stood up in the face of machine gun fire could possibly give less of a rat’s ass whether the “evil HitlerBushCheny” wants him to lie or not. But the moonbats at TNR assume that 99.99% of the people in the military are “untrustworthy” because they don’t say any of the things that TNR wants to hear.

logis on August 10, 2007 at 8:39 PM

Again, interesting to see TNR whining over the use of an anonymous source by the Weekly Standard, while standing behind the story corroborated by their 5 anonymous sources.

At the same time the military has stonewalled our efforts to get to the truth, it has leaked damaging information about Beauchamp to conservative bloggers.

Damaging information about Beauchamp? What was damaging? That he signed an affidavit? If TNR knows that, and considers it “damaging”, why do they still stand behind his lies? Why does TNR consider it damaging?

Moreover, on the same day he signed these statements for the Army, he gave us a statement standing behind his articles, which we published at tnr.com.

So TNR acknowledges he signed something. If he gave TNR his statement the same day as he signed the “statements”, why did TNR take several days before posting they still stood by his writings?

TNR is not even as credible as a small town high school newspaper.

91Veteran on August 11, 2007 at 12:37 AM

Foer shame.

Dr. Charles G. Waugh on August 11, 2007 at 12:55 AM

Bryan:

“Trolling Ace’s comments again, wondering why this commenter didn’t leave said comment here as well as there, but never mind that”

If it’s cross posting you want, I’m happy to oblige. Here’s what I wrote up for the latest TNR Beauchamp thread:

To the Editors:

Having granted Scott Beauchamp anonymity for the express purpose of preempting investigation, you’re in no position to complain when the Army that you were stonewalling won’t share their work product with you. Ditto for your indignant protest that someone in the Army is, gasp!, leaking. It’s not as though you’ve been entirely forthright about acknowledging what you do know, yourselves.

You quoted Major Steven Lamb directly on August 7th, yet conveniently neglected to report the actual conclusions of the Army Investigation which that same spokesman was publicly confirming in multiple venues elsewhere. You declined to divulge Beauchamp’s in-house relationship with a TNR staff member, until it was clearly impossible to avoid that admission any longer. Indeed, that seems to be the deciding factor to date. Not until critics raised the spectre of a recantation, did TNR readers learn that you, yourselves, already knew Beauchamp had “signed several statements under what he described as pressure from the Army” when you published his coming out letter, way back on July 26th. For the purposes of shifting the onus here, let’s just pretend that the Army’s editorial counterparts at TNR would never pressure Beauchamp to corroborate his stories in any way, shall we? Oh, wait. That’s just what the critics are saying, isn’t it?

The Army would be under no obligation to exonerate or refute or otherwise satisfy TNR, even if you hadn’t been perfectly willing to cut them out of the loop when it seemed to work to your advantage. The idea that they should do so now by riding roughshod over the confidentiality of their own investigation and the privacy interests of Beauchamp’s fellow soldiers — and, indeed, of Beauchamp himself — so that you don’t have to expose your own sources and methods is a perversion of journalistic principle not a defense of editorial propriety.

The Army’s decisions are neither dispositive nor even relevant to the real controversy here. Your claim that “Shock Troops” was “rigorously edited and fact-checked before it was published” along with your decision to publish on that basis have always been the central issues. It is your own emphasis on “re-reporting” that allows you to pose such strawmen now and to obscure the fact that you have been unable to describe virtually any serious attempt at vetting “Scott Thomas” or his “war” stories before you went to press. As far as this reader is concerned, the first issue has already been settled in that breach.

What remains to be fleshed out is the question of editorial judgment and intention. Casting your critics, and the Army, of course, as ideologically debased adversaries without any conceivable claim to the integrity you apparently reserve to yourselves alone will certainly elicit applause from those who need no persuading. If they’re your target audience, then the ideological hole you’re digging yourselves makes editorial sense. If not, then what you need most right now is an intervention. Developments like the stark contrast between the representation you offered up from a gratuitously anonymous Bradley spokesman and the on-the-record assessment obtained from the same source by Bob Owen mentioned above unfortunately suggest that even your “re-reporting” may represent considerably less than a search for or committment to truth. In contrast, your defenders elsewhere add little to the story beyond the same sort of generalizations and pop psychology provided in your own hosted threads.

Publishing anonymous sources is no business for amateurs. If you’re not sure enough of your author, or his accuracy, or the importance of the message you’re sponsoring to take major lumps from any quarter for it, then you need to leave such endeavors to pros who are prepared to take the heat. You are hoist on an anonymous petard of your own devising, and playing the ex post facto political victim will do nothing to rehabilitate your journalistic / reputation.

JM Hanes on August 11, 2007 at 2:54 AM

This is why moral people really can’t exist on the left anymore. If you can digest everything known about this matter and still come away on the side of STB & TNR, then you have no rational morality.

I’d gladly die before I ever sided with such base anti-reality, anti-American hatred.

JeffB. on August 11, 2007 at 2:55 AM

Sorry for not closing the italics tag! Hope it’s not to late to do it here.

JM Hanes on August 11, 2007 at 2:59 AM

From a LGF commenter:

#28 sireverlast 8/10/2007 2:25:39 pm PDT reply quote

For those of you who have AKO whitepages, my initial report has been confirmed: BEAUCHAMP WAS DEMOTED EFF 01 AUG 07 FROM PV2/E2 to PVT/E1. You can verify this on AKO.

slp on August 11, 2007 at 3:56 AM