September 12, 2004


CBS is spinning at 19,000 rpm and beyond in its attempts to defend Dan’s deception. Here’s the most recent BS from CBS:

On Saturday, there were reports that retired National Guard Maj. Gen. Bobby W. Hodges - who corroborated the CBS News account - now says he believes the documents were not real, in part because of recent statements of Jerry Killian's relatives.

CBS News responded Saturday, saying, "We believed General Hodges the first time we spoke with him. We believe the documents to be genuine. We stand by our story and will continue to report on it.”

Of course, Hodges hadn’t even seen the documents when CBS first spoke to him. His view subsequently changed:

According to Hodges, CBS told him the documents were "handwritten" and after CBS read him excerpts he said, "well if he wrote them that's what he felt." ... His personal belief is that the documents have been "computer generated" and are a "fraud".

Interesting that CBS should prefer the account of someone whose awareness of the facts was so limited (and distorted). And then there’s the matter of Phillip Bouffard, about whom the Boston Globe writes:

Philip D. Bouffard, a forensic document examiner in Ohio who has analyzed typewritten samples for 30 years, had expressed suspicions about the documents in an interview with the New York Times published Thursday, one in a wave of similar media reports. But Bouffard told the Globe yesterday that after further study, he now believes the documents could have been prepared on an IBM Selectric Composer typewriter available at the time.

Not so. Bouffard complains convincingly here that he’s been misrepresented. Naturally, CBS repeated the Globe’s ... well, we can’t really call it an error at this point, can we?

(Via InstaPundit, who has a whole bunch of further comments/links. Also, take a look at the latest from LGF.)

UPDATE. More from Hodges:

A former Texas Air National Guard colonel relied upon by CBS News to support the authenticity of memos about President Bush's military service said he never saw the memos before the show aired, and that he doesn't now believe they are authentic.

Retired Col. Bobby Hodges of Arlington, Texas, also said that one of the memos' references to undue pressure to "sugar coat" Bush's evaluations rings false. He said the colonel that supposedly applied that pressure did not interfere in Guard affairs after his retirement, 18 months before the date on the disputed memo.

Hodges, who retired from the Guard in 1989, said that after he saw the typewritten memos on Friday morning, he believed Killian did not, in fact, write them. "I don't think Killian wrote them - official or unofficial," he said.

By relying on Hodges’ earlier view, even in light of his increased knowledge and changed opinion, CBS is practicing the opposite of journalism. By the way, if you haven’t already, read Mark Steyn.

UPDATE II. In addition to the four Bush documents held by CBS, USA Today has two more. What’s up with that?

UPDATE III. The Washington Post:

On Friday, CBS News anchor Dan Rather named one of Killian's superiors, Hodges, as a key source in CBS's authentication of the documents. He said that Hodges -- whom he described as "an avid Bush supporter" -- had told CBS that he was "familiar" with the documents.

"It took a lot for him to speak the truth," Rather said.

But in an interview yesterday from his Texas home, Hodges contested Rather's account. He said that he was called on Monday night by a CBS reporter who read him extracts from documents purportedly written by Killian. Hodges said that he may have told CBS that he had conversations with Killian about Bush, but he denied confirming the authenticity of the documents in any way.

"Now that I have had a chance to see them, I think they are fake," Hodges said.

A CBS spokeswoman, Sandy Genelius, said the network "believed General Hodges the first time we talked to him."

Yes. Back when he was bravely telling the truth, at least so far as CBS defines it.

UPDATE IV. The Dallas-Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports Lt. Col. Jerry Killian’s son claiming the memos are bogus, and that his father "couldn’t type to begin with." Gary Killian, who also served in the National Guard, said he and his late father discussed the future President:

"We spoke about him only in terms that he was a pretty good pilot and that, on a couple of occasions, he tried to volunteer for operation 'Palace Alert,' " Killian said. "Palace Alert" was a program that dispatched Guard members in Texas to the Vietnam War.

I bet CBS never expected that news to leak out as a result of their "investigations". Killian turns out to be quite a source:

Gary Killian said that he was interviewed last week by a Dallas-based producer for CBS and that he tried to pass on the name of another person who knew Bush well when both were in the Guard. He said the producer told him the network had already talked to the individual.

"She told me point-blank, 'We don't want to use his commentary because we think he's too pro-Bush,' " Killian said.

There's a shock.

UPDATE V. Michael Moore was so looking forward to the Bush revelations:

Later today (Wed.), the Boston Globe, the A.P. and Dan Rather all present new and damning information about how George W. Bush got moved to the front of the line to get in the Texas Air National Guard, and how he then went AWOL. I am putting every ounce of trust I have in my fellow Americans that a majority of them get this, get the injustice of it all, and get the sad, sick twisted irony of how it relates very, very much to our precious Election 2004.

Oh, they get it, Mike.

(Via Lurker in comments)

Posted by Tim Blair at September 12, 2004 01:39 PM

Well, the CBS executive's selectric memory will cause them to lose their composer soon enough.

Posted by: Brent at September 12, 2004 at 02:32 PM

Just noticed that Michael Moore's blog has in it's most recent entry (7th September no less!) a gloating reference to the coming Dan Rather revelations.

Come on Mike, lets hear what youve got to say...

Posted by: Lurker at September 12, 2004 at 02:59 PM

Just to nitpick: It's not the Dallas-Ft. Worth Star Telegram, it is the Ft. Worth Star Telegram. Dallas has the Dallas Morning News and on an editorial level they seem to compete a bit, though they do not have overlapping circulations.

Posted by: KBiel at September 12, 2004 at 03:51 PM

The Dems are in the middle of launching a major slime attack now crashing on its own forgeries. Here are 61 words of that which was SUPPOSED to happen, by Sidney Blumenthal in “Now it's Bush's Turn to Squirm,” The Guardian (UK), 9/9/04, Sid-slime still on the stands even as Rathergate bloomed:

Abruptly, the Republican marchers stumble as Kerry is galvanised. "His miscalculation was going to war without planning carefully and without the allies we should have had," he said yesterday. Meanwhile in the White House, aides anxiously wonder how to explain the president's haunted past and his long years of hiding it and who will have the task of facing the cameras.

As you can see, Dan Rather, Terry McAuliffe, John Edwards, etc., are still trying to follow that script.

All of this has been meant to build to a head during the November election in order to help the Dems contest the election & even destabilize the electoral process. The Dems pols, many of them, are steadily building to a head where, I’m starting to think, they will try to justify extremes of some kind.

The Dems also are busily disenfranchising the US armed forces. Floridian armed forces members overseas may have trouble getting ballots because of a Florida Dem judge’s last-minute decision in a Dems-vs-Nader case.

Posted by: ForNow at September 12, 2004 at 03:56 PM

This doesn't make sense. Wasn't Bush supposed to be the idiot?

Posted by: Clem Snide at September 12, 2004 at 04:20 PM

Now Mike Moore knows what he's talking about when it comes to forgeries. Isn't he the one who produced a
forged copy of the Bloomington Pantograph's front page in "Farenheit 911"? And isn't he the one who added faked up words to a 1988 Bush ad about the Willie Horton furlough scandal in "Bowling for Columbine"? Yes indeed he is. Put your faith in forgeries, my fellow Americans!

Posted by: wenwen at September 12, 2004 at 04:42 PM


The relevant paragraph:

Later today (Wed.), the Boston Globe, the A.P. and Dan Rather all present new and damning information about how George W. Bush got moved to the front of the line to get in the Texas Air National Guard, and how he then went AWOL. I am putting every ounce of trust I have in my fellow Americans that a majority of them get this, get the injustice of it all, and get the sad, sick twisted irony of how it relates very, very much to our precious Election 2004.

How is it that he hasn't deleted this already?

Posted by: Jim Treacher at September 12, 2004 at 05:00 PM

D'oh! Sorry, Tim.

Posted by: Jim Treacher at September 12, 2004 at 05:06 PM

Why hasn't Moore deleted it? Well, the documents are as factual as his films, and he hasn't deleted them . . .

Posted by: Warmongering Lunatic at September 12, 2004 at 05:35 PM

This has just been so much fun, watching Rather and CBS implode. And the Moore quote: He sounds like Gollum! "Our PRECIOUS Election 2004"?! I'm expecting him to hiss, "We hatess them, we hates the Republicanses, yes we do! Gollum! Gollum! They stole it from us, they stole the Preciouss, yess! We hatess them forever!"

Posted by: BarCodeKing at September 12, 2004 at 08:04 PM

Moore's not very good at this "blogging" thing, is he? Two entries around in three days at the beginning of July, then nothing until Tuesday's craptacular entry. I suspect it may be months before "Gollum" Moore posts again! Probably November 3rd for wailing and gnashing of teeth.

Posted by: BarCodeKing at September 12, 2004 at 08:08 PM

Nah, I think he'll post at least once more before the election, probably the Tuesday before.

He'll predict a massive landslide for Kerry, despite the majority of polls that predict otherwise. He'll call it something along the lines of "Payback Tuesday", and may even use it again hoping no one remembers. Somewhere in the post he'll use the phrases "send a message" and "ordinary people".

November 3rd is when he deletes that post.

Posted by: david at September 12, 2004 at 09:12 PM

Im thinking if we have a Bush/Howard double re-election,there will be a lot of left wing barking moonbats looking for new homes.Maybe Nth Korea.

Posted by: aussiecom at September 12, 2004 at 10:08 PM

Care to try your hand at forging an authentic military document from 1972? To fool the “experts” you just need Microsoft Word '97 or later, the standard Times New Roman typeface, and a bit of persistence. I did not test this with all versions of Word, so the commands may vary a bit from those below.

First, open a new blank document in Word. In the top menu click File > Page Setup, then set the top margin at 0.7", the bottom at 1", the left at 1.35", and the right at 1.25". Now click Format > Font, and select Times New Roman, regular, 11 point.

Your "original" 1972 letter from Lt. Colonel Killian is printed below. It has underlining instead of spaces to preserve the letter’s white space in HTML and Word.

Put the cursor at the beginning of the underlining, hold down Shift and Ctrl, and tap the End key or use the down arrow key to select all the text in the letter. Release all keys, right click in the selected area, and copy. Left click at the start of your Word document. Click Edit in the top menu, then Paste Special, select “unformatted text”, and “OK” to paste.

Now we have to replace the underlining with spaces. Left click at the beginning of the document, click Edit, Replace. Type one underline mark after “Find” and one space after “Replace”. Hit OK. If asked if you want to start again at the beginning of the document, click OK. All the underlining should now be spaces.

Just to make absolutely sure that all the text is now in 11 point Times Roman, put the cursor at the start of the document, and select the entire letter. Change it all to another font size, say 12 point, then back to 11.

We’re almost done. Locate the "th" following "111th" near the end of the letter. Delete the "th", type "th" again followed by a space, and delete the space. This should put the "th" into superscript.

Last, add one carriage return (hit Enter) in the space where the signature would go, above "JERRY".

Now save the file. Print it, on a LaserJet if possible. Scuff it up a bit to "age" it, and copy it on a copier set to darken a bit. Copy the copy.

If all went well (it sometimes happens) you have just created an almost exact replica of the "authentic" typewritten document that CBS used to discredit George Bush.

Compare your document to the "original" CBS May 4th memorandum at

The May 4th file is linked on the left in a grey box that says "More Information". Double-click to open the PDF file in Acrobat, then print it.

You should also save the CBS file, in case you ever want to remember this shining example of the liberal media’s "journalistic integrity."

Here is the letter:







Posted by: TomC at September 12, 2004 at 10:13 PM

Perhaps this was supposed to be the Dems' ``October Surprise'' - only they had one of those Palestinian-style ``work accidents'' and it blew up in their own faces.

As for ``Palace Alert'' - OK, we have only the younger Mr. Killian's word on it, but hey, it has more credibility than anything Dan said. I hope the word goes far and wide. Thanks for bringing it to our attention, Tim.

Posted by: Annalucia at September 12, 2004 at 11:33 PM

"CBS didn't have the courtesy of spelling Dr. Philip Bouffard's name correctly."

They probably think people can't google the reference if they misspell it. CBS News has gone past the point of negligence and reasonable disagreement and is clearly dissembling.

Posted by: Bruce Rheinstein at September 13, 2004 at 02:24 AM

One would think that even at a monolith like CBS, there would be an employee with scruples and a conscience. Where is that honorable CBS employee who cares more for truth than for willful error? Where is the CBS whistleblower? Doesn't "60 Minutes" positively dote on whistleblowers anyway? Couldn't an internal whistleblower go to the bosses at "60 Minutes" and get put on the air without delay?

Is Hell cooling off yet?

Posted by: Ann_Observer at September 13, 2004 at 07:50 AM


We have more than just Mr. Killian's word for it. For example, see here.

Posted by: CGeib at September 13, 2004 at 11:40 AM

But who would have guessed so many people know so much about typeface, past and present?

Posted by: Mike at September 13, 2004 at 12:23 PM

Sometimes I think nobody actually _reads_ the MSM. Back a few months ago, Newsweek did a cover story on both candidates' Vietnam years, called "War Stories", it explicitly mentioned Bush and Palace Alert.

Link here

I found it especially amusing when Josh Marshall went ballastic when (1st name forgotten) Racicot mentioned the story in public, saying only that it came from a "national magazine". He hypervenilated for several days that there was no such magazine, or that it was some conservative rag. I finally sent him the link, but he never issued a correction that I saw. I found it amusing that a cover story in Newsweek is apparently so obscure that the Republican can't remember the magazine, and the Democrat never read it.

Posted by: Ted at September 13, 2004 at 01:06 PM

Oops, my link didn't work for some reason. Here it is as text:

Posted by: Ted at September 13, 2004 at 01:07 PM