Reidblog [The Reid Report blog]

Think at your own risk.
Monday, May 16, 2005
Irony alert
Hm. Powerline is also on the attack, predictably, and he seems to be betting the fact farm on Pentagon spokesman Larry DiRita's denials (and the Pentagon's discounting of prisoner allegations of Quran/Koran flushing). I won't even go into Laura Ingram's incoherent rant on her radio show this morning...

But none of the wingers is addressing the key question here: why didn't Mr. DiRita or someone in the Pentagon simply refute the story when the Newsweek reporters called them to confirm it? According to Newsweek, Isikoff and co-author John Barry attempted to vet the story through the Pentagon before it was published, and no denial was forthcoming. Said Evan Thomas for the May 23 edition:
A SouthCom spokesman contacted by Isikoff declined to comment on an ongoing investigation, but NEWSWEEK National Security Correspondent John Barry, realizing the sensitivity of the story, provided a draft of the NEWSWEEK PERISCOPE item to a senior Defense official, asking, "Is this accurate or not?" The official challenged one aspect of the story: the suggestion that Maj. Gen. Geoffrey Miller, sent to Gitmo by the Pentagon in 2001 to oversee prisoner interrogation, might be held accountable for the abuses. Not true, said the official (the PERISCOPE draft was corrected to reflect that). But he was silent about the rest of the item. The official had not meant to mislead, but lacked detailed knowledge of the SouthCom report.

So the Pentagon found the allegations credible enough to investigate them then, but DiRita and McClellan and by inference, the White House, says they're pure bunk now? Whew! That was one hell of a speedy investigation...!
posted by JReid @ 2:13 PM  
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"I am for enhanced interrogation. I don't believe waterboarding is torture... I'll do it. I'll do it for charity." -- Sean Hannity
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