Tuesday, January 11, 2005


More CBS Fallout

A defiant Mary Mapes continues to defend the authenticity of the Bush National Guard documents:

I am shocked by the vitriolic scape-goating in Les Moonves's statement. I am very concerned that his actions are motivated by corporate and political considerations . ratings rather than journalism.

Honey, you aren't exactly blameless in this, so don't start off talking about scapegoating.

Mr. Moonves's response to the review panel's report and the panel's assessment of the evidence it developed in its investigation combine not only to condemn me, but to put all investigative reporting in the CBS tradition at risk.

That's exactly the point Mary. Your beloved tradition of investigative reporting amounts to being nothing more than the mouthpiece of the DNC.

Much has been made about the fact that these documents are photocopies and therefore cannot be trusted, but decades of investigative reporting have relied on just such copies of memos, documents and notes. In vetting these documents, we did not have ink to analyze, original signatures to compare, or paper to date. We did have context and corroboration and believed, as many journalists have before and after our story, that authenticity is not limited to original documents. Photocopies are often a basis for verified stories.

Again that same fake but accurate spiel.

It is noteworthy the panel did not conclude that these documents are false. Indeed, in the end, all that the panel did conclude was that there were many red flags that counseled against going to air quickly. I never had control of the timing of any airing of a 60 Minutes segment; that has always been a decision made by my superiors. Airing this story when it did, was also a decision made by my superiors, including Andrew Heyward. If there was a journalistic crime committed here, it was not by me. Those superiors also made the decision to give the White House little time to consider or respond to the Killian documents. Contrary to the conclusions of the panel, I vetted all aspects of the story with my editors. In fact, as I have always done with my editors, I told them everything.

Fair enough. Others have also noted that the big guys on top never get blamed.

Quite frankly, I think she should have just apologized. But then again, it seems like most people view apologizing as a sign of weakness or ignorance. I see it as more like owning up to your actions in a given situation.

Dan Rather also made a bland statement today, where he doesn't really seem to be apologizing for his part in this whole scandal. (Link via LGF)

To read Mapes' entire statement, click here.


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