The Facts Machine

"And I come back to you now, at the turn of the tide"

Wednesday, May 18, 2005


I had just started my satirical article when it occurred to me to check Tom Burka's blog and make sure he didn't do it first. It's a good thing I checked.
Bush To Retract War

Cites Protests, Poor Sourcing, Newsweek Debacle as Impetus

George W. Bush retracted the Iraq war today, saying that it had been based on information from an unreliable source and that the original premises for the war were wrong.

"We had one source for the war -- two, if you count Judith Miller -- and it now appears that that source didn't know what he was talking about," George W. Bush told reporters. (Ahmed Chalabi had no comment, but told reporters that he would consider "telling them everything they wanted to hear" for 10 million dollars.)
Going on from there, he does a better job on it than I probably would've done. But if I may add a few paragraphs...
When reached for reactions to Bush's retraction, a number of right-wing webloggers -- or "bloggers" -- were reluctant to comment.

"I am not sure what to make of this," said University of Tennessee law professor Glenn Reynolds, who runs the blog "If one of my readers were to show me a way to shoehorn this news into a criticism of the MSM, I might have something for you," adding, "heh."

John Hinderaker of Power Line, Time Magazine's 2004 Blog of the Year, was harder to pin down: "Um... Dan Rather sucks!" When pressed for futher comment, John added after a lengthy silence, "Dan Rather... really sucks? Oh! And that rabble-rouser Gandhi sucks too!"

Jeff Jarvis and Mickey Kaus are currently collaborating on an upcoming piece for the Wall St Journal arguing that CNN conspired with the Bush administration to start the Iraq war in spite of poor intelligence, as a springboard to allow Eason Jordan to make an off-the-record comment at an economic forum some time later. "Trust us, it's air-tight," Kaus told reporters while holding a sock puppet labeled "Ed." up to a microphone.
This is the last time I'm dealing with the Newsweek story, by the way. I'll close with one observation: It's the perfect story for all involved. For the right, it gives them a chance to bitch about the media. And for the left, it gives them a chance to have their heads explode from irony overload, particularly given the scant attention given to the Downing street memo, and the cutesy callousness of the right's little "newsweek lied, people died" crusade. Lastly, it's wonderful for the administration, because it allows them to explain away a spat of violence in Afghanistan that people in the administration said would have happened anyway before the debunking of the Newsweek story occurred.

UPDATE: Sully goes after Instapundit's coverage of the Newsweek story (compared to his coverage of Abu Ghraib), and Glenn responds by... well, by punting. (Alicublog)


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