Carol Platt Liebau: The Left's Kind of Hero?

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

The Left's Kind of Hero?

Fans of serial prevaricator Joe Wilson seem to think that it's unimportant that he lied about having seen the forged Niger documents. After all, the substance of the documents turned out to be true, didn't it?

Well, as Stephen Hayes points out here, not so fast with the famous CBS "fake but accurate" defense.

Relevant excerpt:

First, it is far from clear that Bush's claim has been invalidated by postwar inspections. Weapons inspections in 2003 and 2004 have little bearing on whether Iraq sought uranium in 1999. And the British review of prewar intelligence (known as the Butler report) concluded that the claim was--and remains--solid. Even Wilson's own reporting about a 1999 meeting between Nigerien government officials and an Iraqi delegation seemed to corroborate earlier reports, dating back to October 2001, that Iraq had sought uranium from Niger.

More problematic: Wilson's "central assertion" was not a soft, subjective claim that Bush's statement was incorrect. His central assertion was that he had seen the documents that proved the Bush administration had lied. Wilson's story was compelling not because he had simply come to a different conclusion than the Bush administration, but because he alone could demonstrate that the administration's claim was built on a lie.

Not only that, but (as Hayes points out), when he was caught in some of his lies, Wilson chose to blame the reporters he had used to gain whatever "fifteen minutes" of fame he's gotten.

What a hero.


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