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Will anybody take this seriously?

In its rush to air its now discredited story about President George W. Bush's National Guard service, CBS bumped another sensitive piece slated for the same "60 Minutes" broadcast: a half-hour segment about how the U.S. government was snookered by forged documents purporting to show Iraqi efforts to purchase uranium from Niger.

A team of "60 Minutes" correspondents and consulting reporters spent more than six months investigating the Niger uranium documents fraud, CBS sources tell NEWSWEEK. The group landed the first ever on-camera interview with Elisabetta Burba, the Italian journalist who first obtained the phony documents, as well as her elusive source, Rocco Martino, a mysterious Roman businessman with longstanding ties to European intelligence agencies.

Wonder who made the decision to pull it hours before it aired?  It makes their debacle even more embarassing. Every hack pundit will question their credibility, and it's shameful that they dumped this for the Guard records mess, but I hope they still air it soon.

Originally posted to queerbklynboy on Thu Sep 23, 2004 at 04:57 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  JMM's story (none)
    This sounds like 60 minutes was partnering with JMM and Laura Rozen here (they did say there was involvement from a network).

    I think that might force it to come out--if they don't put it on TV, then Laura and Josh will have to publish what they do have and get the scoop. And they're reliable enough to get their story picked up, I hope.

    Unfortunately, though, this story is complex enough that voters will need a bit of time to digest it. And it doesn't help that BushCo and the Italian government are already sending out a lot of disinformation to discredit this story.

  •  The irony is ironic (none)
    I dicussed this in my diary entry from yesterday.
  •  Hmmmmmm (none)
    This adds credibility to the rumors that the fake memos were a Bush campaign dirty trick. Push aside the story of the forged Niger documents with some forged Bush documents, then tarnish the credibility of 60 Minutes on exactly that issue -- detecting forged documents. So the Niger story can't run.

    That's so tinfoil, but I can't help thinking it. It's like a spy comedy where you lie to fake out their expectations that you'll tell the truth to fake them out on their expectations that you'll lie, or something. It brings to mind the Nielsen Hayden slogan: "I deeply resent the way this administration makes me feel like a nutball conspiracy theorist." (here and here).

  •  Pity, a great pity and frankly (none)
    shame on 60 Minutes 2, very bad decision, all around.  As well, I suspect that CBS is the network to whom the ICRC passed "4 reports" on the curretn status of the prisons in Iraq (the RC has never stated other than "we have negotiated some things").
    It was 4 months ago that passing of dox was discussed in the media in Europe.
    So, AG is shut down from the CBS end (to all events and purposes) as well as this excellent report.  Down the chute...
    Mess.  Oh yeah in my view, they got punk'd.  And Lockhart was very foolish. Yeah, I'd say Roger Stone is very likely the culprit.

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