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Dan Rather's Defense, Memos "Could" Be Authentic, Grows Lamer --9/14/2004


1. Dan Rather's Defense, Memos "Could" Be Authentic, Grows Lamer
Dan Rather's second effort Monday night to defend the authenticity of the memos supposedly about President Bush's National Guard record was even lamer that his first attempt on Friday night, though after having denigrated his critics on Friday as "partisan political operatives," on Monday's CBS Evening News he at least conceded that "some" of the questions about the documents "come from people who are not active political partisans." Rather began his defense by highlighting a shot at Bush from a Kerry operative at a DNC press conference and ended by recounting how "CBS News asked the White House today to give direct answers to a number of questions." Of course, CBS News has so far refused to pose any such direct questions to John Kerry or provide any "direct answers" as to the source or agenda of whoever gave them the supposed memos. Rather provided a low standard of proof as he relayed how document analysts "strongly insist" that the documents "could have been created in the '70s." Amongst his defenses, that overwriting MS Word's automatic superscripting is cumbersome, as if a forger wouldn't make the effort!

2. Olbermann Lays Out Right-Wing Conspiracy Behind Faked Memos
MSNBC's Keith Olbermann sees a grand conspiracy in "how the documents came to be so quickly and thoroughly refuted on a right-wing Web site not two hours after they were first revealed on CBS." Picking up on how a FreeRepublic.com poster, "Buckhead," had first suggested a 1970s typewriter could not have produced the memo showcased by 60 Minutes, on Monday's Countdown Olbermann ran through the blogger's resume and concluded, ever so ominously: "So the Killian documents come out and are almost immediately questioned by a lawyer with Republican ties and are distributed to other news organizations without comment by the White House and they suddenly have one of their principal endorsers retract his endorsement. How many rats do you smell?"

3. Killian Colleague Calls Memos "Absurd," Experts Doubt Signature
FNC on Monday morning brought aboard retired Colonel Earl Lively, who ran the Texas Air National Guard operations in Austin during George W. Bush's tenure, and he declared that the memos from his former colleague, Jerry Killian, put forward by CBS News are "absolutely absurd. Anybody that knew anything about the Guard in that period can just read those memos and see that they are completely unrealistic." He also explained how Bush did not jump to the front of a long waiting list. Later in the day, FNC's Special Report with Brit Hume highlighted two document experts who doubted the authenticity of Jerry Killian's signature on the CBS memos as Jim Angle pointed out that CBS's handwriting expert, Marcel Matley, who validated the Killian signature, wrote in a professional journal a couple of years ago that signature's cannot be confirmed from photocopies, which is all CBS has.

4. CBS Expert Denies Authenticating, WPost: Likely Word Processor
In what should be a devastating blow to CBS News and Dan Rather, the Washington Post's Michael Dobbs and Howard Kurtz reported on Tuesday that "the lead expert retained by CBS News to examine disputed memos from President Bush's former squadron commander in the National Guard," Marcel Matley, "said yesterday that he examined only the late officer's signature and made no attempt to authenticate the documents themselves." On Friday's CBS Evening News, Dan Rather had declared: "Document and handwriting examiner Marcel Matley analyzed the documents for CBS News. He says he believes they are real." The Post duo concluded that an analysis "shows that half a dozen Killian memos released earlier by the military were written with a standard typewriter using different formatting techniques from those characteristic of computer-generated documents. CBS's Killian memos bear numerous signs that are more consistent with modern-day word-processing programs, particularly Microsoft Word."


Dan Rather's Defense, Memos "Could" Be
Authentic, Grows Lamer

CBS's Dan Rather Dan Rather's second effort Monday night to defend the authenticity of the memos supposedly about President Bush's National Guard record was even lamer that his first attempt on Friday night, though after having denigrated his critics on Friday as "partisan political operatives," on Monday's CBS Evening News he at least conceded that "some" of the questions about the documents "come from people who are not active political partisans." Rather began his defense by highlighting a shot at Bush from a Kerry operative at a DNC press conference and ended by recounting how "CBS News asked the White House today to give direct answers to a number of questions." Of course, CBS News has so far refused to pose any such direct questions to John Kerry about his Vietnam years or provide any "direct answers" as to the source or agenda of whoever gave them the supposed memos from George W. Bush's Air National Guard commander, Jerry Killian.

Rather demanded: "Did a friend of the Bush family use his influence with the then-Texas House Speaker to get George W. Bush into the National Guard? Did Lieutenant Bush refuse an order to take a required physical? Was he suspended for failing to perform up to standards? And did he complete his commitment to the Guard?"

At the top of his report, Rather provided a low standard of proof as he relayed how document analysts "strongly insist that the documents could have been created in the '70s." That's right, CBS News "could" be accurate.

For the detailed September 11 CyberAlert analysis of Rather's Friday night, September 10 presentation: www.mediaresearch.org

Now, a rundown of Rather's Monday, September 13 delivery of evidence in his defense and my comments on it, followed by a full transcript of the story which consumed just over four minutes.

# CBS finds one guy who thinks a typewriter could have done it. In the face of numerous experts, quoted by other media outlets, who insist no typewriter could have produced all the elements seen in the memos or that any one that could would have a cost a fortune and been difficult to operate, Rather put up "technical consultant" Bill Glennon to support the possibility of what "could" have been done.

He appears to be the same Bill Glennon highlighted in this week's Time magazine, which at least noted that not all agree with him: "So far, forensic and typewriter experts consulted by TIME and other major media organizations have not reached a consensus on the authenticity of the memos. Some insist it would have been nearly impossible for a 1970s-era typewriter to produce the memos because of the letter spacing in the documents and the use of a raised and compact th symbol. But Bill Glennon, a technology consultant in New York City who worked for IBM repairing typewriters from 1973 to 1985, says those experts 'are full of crap. They just don't know.' Glennon says there were IBM machines capable of producing the spacing, and a customized key -- the likes of which he says were not unusual -- could have created the superscript th." For the article in the September 20 Time:
For the September 20 Time article in full: www.time.com

In a September 14 Washington Post story, an industry expert disputed Glennon. Michael Dobbs and Howard Kurtz reported: "Thomas Phinney, program manager for fonts for the Adobe company in Seattle, which helped to develop the modern Times New Roman font, disputed Glennon's statement to CBS. He said 'fairly extensive testing' had convinced him that the fonts and formatting used in the CBS documents could not have been produced by the most sophisticated IBM typewriters in use in 1972, including the Selectric and the Executive. He said the two systems used fonts of different widths." (For much more from the Tuesday Post story, see item #4 below.)


Technical Consultant Bill Glennon # Modern word processors can't create a lower case "L." Rather contended, over a blow up of text of "18" and "Alab" lifted from one of the memos, that "the lower case letter 'L' is used for the numeral '1' in those documents instead of the actual numeral one. That would be difficult to reproduce on a computer printer today." "Software designer" Richard Katz argued: "If you were doing this a week ago or a month ago on a normal laser jet printer, it wouldn't work. You just couldn't, the font wouldn't be available to you."

This one stumps me. I have no idea what would prevent anyone from writing or printing "lllth" versus "111th" [the first of those was three lower case "L's], unless the point is that MS Word would not automatically create a supercript "th" after an "L," but you could insert a superscript or simply use a numerical one and then substitute an "L."


# The memos have "th" in both superscript and in regular size. CBS expert Katz contended that to produce a non-superscript "th" in "Microsoft Word you would have to go out of your way to type the letters and then turn the 'th' setting off or back over them and type them again."

Am I in the Twilight Zone? The allegation is that these documents WERE FORGED. Don't you think a forger would make the effort to try to get around automatic formatting which would giveaway the forgery!


# Dates in memos match dates of events, therefore they must be genuine. Again, as if a forger couldn't go to the historic record of what's been in the media for years and figure out the correct dates to list. Rather seriously put forward as a defense: "The new papers are in line with what is known about the President's service assignments and dates. For instance, the official record shows that Mr. Bush was suspended from flying on August 1, 1972. That date matches the one on a memo given to CBS News, ordering that Mr. Bush be suspended."

Rather soon employed his "could" be true defense as he asserted that another memo "could be in line with what documents released by the White House last week show" about a date.

Now, Dan Rather's September 13 CBS Evening News presentation in full, as corrected against the closed-captioning by the MRC's Brad Wilmouth. Despite having not yet delved into Kerry's Vietnam record and having only smeared and then ignored Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, Rather began:
"Besides reporting on Senator John Kerry's Vietnam service record, CBS News has been checking President Bush's service in the Texas Air National Guard, including whether he did or did not fulfill his commitment. CBS News is continuing to report the story, gathering information, asking questions and probing. CBS is also addressing questions about documents used to corroborate some of the information in our reporting. Some of these questions come from people who are not active political partisans. It's tonight's 'Inside Story.'

At this point, CBS jumped to a taped piece narrated by Rather: "At a Democratic National Committee press conference today, the shots being fired by some retired military men were aimed directly at President Bush's National Guard service."
Retired General Merrill McSpeak, former U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff: "An official records show that he skipped a physical and was grounded. Now, you know how hard it is to forget your annual flying physical? I took 37 of them in a row."
Rather: "There has also been criticism of the new documents obtained by 60 Minutes and CBS News. But CBS used several techniques to make sure these papers should be taken seriously. Talking to handwriting and document analysts and other experts who strongly insist that the documents could have been created in the '70s."
Bill Glennon, identified on screen as a "technical consultant": "Everything that's in that document was, documents that people are saying can't be done, as you said, 32 years ago, is just totally false. Not true. Like I said, proportional spacing was available, superscripts was available as a custom feature. Proportional spacing between lines was available. You could order that any way you'd like."
Rather, over blow up of text of '18" and "Alab": "Richard Katz, a software designer, found some other indications in the documents. He noted that the lower case letter 'L' is used for the numeral '1' in those documents instead of the actual numeral one. That would be difficult to reproduce on a computer printer today."
Software Designer Richard Katz Richard Katz, software designer: "If you were doing this a week ago or a month ago on a normal laser jet printer, it wouldn't work. You just couldn't, the font wouldn't be available to you."
Rather: "Katz also noted that the documents have both the so-called superscript 'th' and a regular-sized 'th.' That would be common on a typewriter, not a computer."
Katz: "There's one document from May of 1972 which contains a normal 'th' at the top. To produce that in Microsoft Word, you would have to go out of your way to type the letters and then turn the 'th' setting off or back over them and type them again."
Rather: "CBS News also relied on an analysis of the contents of the documents themselves to determine the contents' authenticity. The new papers are in line with what is known about the President's service assignments and dates. For instance, the official record shows that Mr. Bush was suspended from flying on August 1, 1972. That date matches the one on a memo given to CBS News, ordering that Mr. Bush be suspended. Shortly after 60 Minutes broadcast the new documents last week, USA Today obtained another new document. In the memo dated February 2, 1972, Colonel Killian asked to be 'updated as soon as possible on flight certifications, specifically Bush.' [On screen, over what looks to be a one-line memo: "Update me as soon as possible on flight certifications. Specifically-...Bush..."] That could be in line with what documents released by the White House last week show, that in the spring of 1972, then-Lieutenant Bush stopped exclusively flying the F-102 and dropped back to piloting a training plane, part of an effort to maintain his flight certification.
Rather, back live at anchor desk: "CBS News asked the White House today to give direct answers to a number of questions: Did a friend of the Bush family use his influence with the then-Texas House Speaker to get George W. Bush into the National Guard? Did Lieutenant Bush refuse an order to take a required physical? Was he suspended for failing to perform up to standards? And did he complete his commitment to the Guard?
"In reply, a White House spokesman told CBS News today: 'As you know, we have repeatedly addressed these issues.' These direct questions have not been fully completely answered. The White House and the Bush-Cheney campaign always point out President Bush received an honorable discharge. What's in the 60 Minutes report CBS News believes to be true and believes the documents are authentic."

[Web Update: Last Friday, as caught by CBS's cameras on a Manhattan street, Dan Rather denounced "the Internet" as "filled with all kinds of rumors," but when it came time to find "experts" to claim CBS's Jerry Killian memos are authentic, Rather trolled the Internet. For his CBS Evening News defense transcribed above Rather featured "technical consultant" Bill Glennon and "software designer" Richard Katz.
It turns out that Glennon first made himself known, as someone who would vouch for CBS, in a Friday posting on Kevin Drum's "Political Animal" blog for the Washington Monthly, TimesWatch.org Editor Clay Waters informed me. And the MRC's Tim Graham alerted me to how Tuesday's New York Times reported that Katz called his local CBS affiliate offering up himself for expert analysis.
Blogger Tim Blair today noted Glennon's Washington Monthly blog posting. See: timblair.spleenville.com
This blog also noted it: littlegreenfootballs.com
Glennon's original posting: www.washingtonmonthly.com
Tuesday's New York Times reported: "Richard Katz, a computer software expert in Los Angeles who was featured on the "Evening News" segment, said in an interview that he had called his local affiliate, KCBS, after looking at the memos on the CBS Web site after the initial broadcast, when some experts were saying that the memos looked as if they had been composed using the Times New Roman font in Microsoft Word." For the article in full: www.nytimes.com]

Olbermann Lays Out Right-Wing Conspiracy
Behind Faked Memos

MSNBC's Keith Olbermann sees a grand conspiracy in "how the documents came to be so quickly and thoroughly refuted on a right-wing Web site not two hours after they were first revealed on CBS." Picking up on how a FreeRepublic.com poster, "Buckhead," had first suggested a 1970s typewriter could not have produced the memo showcased by 60 Minutes, on Monday's Countdown Olbermann ran through the blogger's resume and concluded, ever so ominously: "So the Killian documents come out and are almost immediately questioned by a lawyer with Republican ties and are distributed to other news organizations without comment by the White House and they suddenly have one of their principal endorsers retract his endorsement. How many rats do you smell?"

Turning to Craig Crawford of Congressional Quarterly and CBS News, Olbermann suggested that if Bush opponents had created the memos they would have done a better job of forgery: "Wouldn't somebody faking this to try to hurt Mr. Bush have to think about, at least, the, you know, the type faces that would identify this as a 2004 document as opposed to a 1992 document, or 1972 document, and more importantly, the out-of-date references to the retired colonel? Who would, who, sophisticatedly would leave that stuff in this?"

Back on August 6, Olbermann warned that the then-upcoming book from John O'Neill of Swift Boat Veterans for Truth is "from Regnery Press, which is supported in some way by Richard Mellon Scaife of the Pittsburgh Tribune Review, and you now bring in the whole mystical right-wing conspiracy jazz." See: www.mediaresearch.org

On his September 13 show, Olbermann argued, as taken down by the MRC's Brad Wilmouth:
"Nor has anybody yet explained how the documents came to be so quickly and thoroughly refuted on a right-wing Web site not two hours after they were first revealed on CBS. The originator of the online discrediting of the Killian memos identified himself only as 'Buckhead,' but a little sleuthing on the Web site on which he posted his typographical criticism pulls up all his other postings and thus a lot more info about him. On the site [on screen MSNBC displayed a FreeRepublic.com page with a "Buckhead" posting], Buckhead claims he is a lawyer from the Atlanta area who participated last month in a meeting of lawyers for Bush-Cheney, an organization he said will be called upon in the event there are election irregularities and everybody winds up in court again. He says he has worked for a Congressman. He says he considers himself prominent in GOP legal circles in Georgia. So the Killian documents come out and are almost immediately questioned by a lawyer with Republican ties and are distributed to other news organizations without comment by the White House and they suddenly have one of their principal endorsers [Bobby Hodges] retract his endorsement. How many rats do you smell?"

Interviewing Crawford from Washington, DC, OLbermann posed these conspiracy theories in the form of question:

-- "Is it political science fiction to wonder, though, if these could have been faked and planted either by very, very dumb Democrats or very, very risk-taking Republicans?"

-- "That, presumably, if you go along with this sort of, as we said, political science fiction, that would be the goal. I mean, we've had forged documents in presidential elections since at least 1844. So that's a question. Would anybody really have the guts -- Democrats, Republicans, whoever -- to create a news story that would, on the face of it, damage their own candidate just so that the story could be knocked down, and would the knocking down of the story actually help, in this case, the Bush campaign?"

-- "Yeah, but, you know, you can get a lot past almost any news organization -- and if anybody doubts that, ask Jayson Blair and the New York Times. Let's step it back one notch. Let's say somebody on, whether it's a, maybe it's a Democratic 'Unabomber' of politics, somebody on Mr. Kerry's side of the ball faked these. Now, you can get much past any news organization, especially one in a hurry, but you have to expect something like this would get a much further examination and evaluation later on by other people. And wouldn't somebody faking this to try to hurt Mr. Bush have to think about, at least, the, you know, the type faces that would identify this as a 2004 document as opposed to a 1992 document, or 1972 document, and more importantly, the out-of-date references to the retired colonel? Who would, who, sophisticatedly would leave that stuff in this?"

-- "Am I out on my own on this, though, Craig? Are you going to join me out here in science fiction land?"

No.

Killian Colleague Calls Memos "Absurd,"
Experts Doubt Signature

FNC on Monday morning brought aboard retired Colonel Earl Lively, who ran the Texas Air National Guard operations in Austin during George W. Bush's tenure, and he declared that the memos from his former colleague, Jerry Killian, put forward by CBS News are "absolutely absurd. Anybody that knew anything about the Guard in that period can just read those memos and see that they are completely unrealistic." He also explained how Bush did not jump to the front of a long waiting list. Later in the day, FNC's Special Report with Brit Hume highlighted two document experts who doubted the authenticity of Jerry Killian's signature on the CBS memos as Jim Angle pointed out that CBS's handwriting expert, Marcel Matley, who validated the Killian signature, wrote in a professional journal a couple of years ago that signature's cannot be confirmed from photocopies, which is all CBS has.

-- Fox and Friends crew, as taken down by the MRC's Megan McCormack, drew out Lively, who appeared via satellite on their September 13 program:

Brian Kilmeade: You also said The Boston Globe called you about this story a while ago. What did they talk to you about and what did they produce?"
Earl Lively: "They called me back in the spring, when they first started on this story, and I talked to them over two or three days. I cooperated, tried to explain to them how things worked in the Guard, and that Bush could be excused for periods of time by his commander, and that as long as his commander allowed him to go, he certainly wasn't AWOL as McAuliffe has said. And so after all, me trying to help them, they misquoted me, and put it out in their newspaper with several quotes that totally distorted what I had to say."
E.D. Hill: "One of the other claims is that President Bush, because of his connections, was able to in essence jump ahead of hundreds of applicants. Now, you were the head of the Texas Air National Guard at that time. Did a significant number of people meet the requirements for the physical, educational, and security needs to even apply for the specific position that President Bush took?"
Lively: "No, well actually, I wasn't the head of the Air National Guard, but I was the head of operations. I was director of operations, and I oversaw and inspected all the units in Texas, flew with them, and the -- there was no waiting list for this. See, this is often confused with another thing, which was a waiting list to simply enlist in the Guard and do your service there rather than the regular military, and there were lots of people on those waiting lists. but those people weren't qualified to go to pilot training school. Now in the course of reading all this stuff, I discovered that Lieutenant Bush took the Air Force pilot and officer examinations while he was still at Yale finishing up, so obviously he was looking for a place to be a pilot. And the personnel, some of the distortion on this came out four years ago when this story first surfaced, because some people had been in personnel in the Air National Guard including lower ranking officers in my headquarters, gave improper information to the Los Angeles Times who had come out with the original story, and a Times reporter reported erroneous information, not his fault, but theirs."
Hill: So there was no waiting list, therefore there was no list that, you know, people that he could have jumped in front of?"
Lively: "There was a long waiting list to just simply enlist in the Guard as a basic airman, but to go in as an officer and go off to flying training. You don't go to Air Force pilot training unless you really want to fly."

-- On Special Report with Brit Hume, Hume interviewed, from Phoenix, document expert Sandra Ramsey Lines. She noted differences in the CBS memos, compared to other Killian signatures, in the "erry" part of "Jerry" and in the shape of his "J" in "Jerry." She concluded the signatures on the CBS memos "probably were not written by" Killian. She also pointed out how when she replicated the memo in MS Word, "the wrap around, or line for line, ended exactly the same as in the default system of Word." So for the document text, she concluded "that these were very probably not produced by typewriter."

Earlier, Hume set up a taped piece by Jim Angle: "Questions continue to arise about the authenticity of four documents CBS News claimed last week were evidence that President Bush shirked his National Guard duties in 1972 and '73. Fox News senior White House correspondent Jim Angle has the latest developments."

Angle began: "Rarely, if ever, has a news story and the documents to back it up been so widely disputed as they are in the story about President Bush's National Guard service. Several experts now say they have serious doubts about the documents used by CBS."
Richard Williams, former document examiner: "In all probability, the signature on the questioned document is a forgery, what is referred to as a 'simulated forgery.'"
Angle: "And not a very good one, says Williams, a retired document expert who worked for the FBI for 23 years. He compared signatures known to be those of Lieutenant Colonel Jerry Killian from before and after the disputed documents used by CBS."
Williams: "The Colonel writes his last name in a very spread out fashion. It's almost two letters for each letter that he writes."
Angle: "But when compared to the CBS documents, he says the differences are clear."
Williams: "The questioned signature is compressed. The writer has written all the letters almost one on top of the other to the point that you can't make a, you can't clearly discern one letter from the other."
Angle: "CBS used four documents that it said came from the personal files of Lieutenant Colonel Killian, who died in 1984. After questions arose, the network said the signatures had been authenticated by an expert named Marcel B. Matley. But the documents he saw were copies, and Matley himself wrote in a legal journal in 2002 that 'modern copiers and computer printers are so good they permit easy fabrication of quality forgeries. From a copy, the document examiner cannot authenticate the unseen original but may well be able to determine that the unseen original is false.' He went on to say that 'a definite finding of authenticity for a signature is not possible from a photocopy, while a definite finding of falsity is possible.' Though CBS says it got the documents from an unimpeachable source, the man in charge of National Guard operations in Texas at the time says he too has doubts."
Colonel Earl Lively, former Texas Air National Guard, on Fox and Friends: "They're absolutely absurd. Anybody that knew anything about the Guard in that period can just read those memos and see that they are completely unrealistic."
Angle: "He points to one of the most critical documents, one headed 'CYA,' a reference to 'covering onself,' which talks about Colonel Buck Staudt intervening to 'sugar coat' Bush's record. But as Fox reported last week, Staudt had retired a year and a half before the document was written."
Lively: "I was in the state headquarters after Colonel Staudt was gone, and we never heard from him. When you're out of the Guard, you're out of authority."
Angle concluded: "Now, CBS said last week that Retired General Bobby Hodges had also verified the documents, but he says they were read to him over the phone and he thought they were hand-written documents. After seeing them, he now says he too believes they're forgeries."

For more on Matley, see item #4 below: www.mediaresearch.org

The September 13 CyberAlert provided a full rundown of previous major media outlet stories highlighting doubts about the memos, including more about Lively, Hodges and Lines: www.mediaresearch.org

In a Monday posting on the Weekly Standard Web site, "The Burden of Belief: A list of what you need to believe in order to conclude that CBS's documents aren't forgeries," Fred Barnes cited the 2002 Matley statement quoted by Angle as appearing in an article in The Practical Litigator. For the piece by Barnes: www.weeklystandard.com

CBS Expert Denies Authenticating, WPost:
Likely Word Processor

Marcel Matley In what should be a devastating blow to CBS News and Dan Rather, the Washington Post's Michael Dobbs and Howard Kurtz reported on Tuesday that "the lead expert retained by CBS News to examine disputed memos from President Bush's former squadron commander in the National Guard said yesterday that he examined only the late officer's signature and made no attempt to authenticate the documents themselves. 'There's no way that I, as a document expert, can authenticate them,' Marcel Matley said in a telephone interview from San Francisco. The main reason, he said, is that they are 'copies' that are 'far removed' from the originals."

On Friday's CBS Evening News, Dan Rather had declared: "Document and handwriting examiner Marcel Matley analyzed the documents for CBS News. He says he believes they are real."

Dobbs and Kurtz disclosed: "A detailed comparison by The Washington Post of memos obtained by CBS News with authenticated documents on Bush's National Guard service reveals dozens of inconsistencies, ranging from conflicting military terminology to different word-processing techniques.
"The analysis shows that half a dozen Killian memos released earlier by the military were written with a standard typewriter using different formatting techniques from those characteristic of computer-generated documents. CBS's Killian memos bear numerous signs that are more consistent with modern-day word-processing programs, particularly Microsoft Word."

An excerpt follows below of the Post story, but first, from the September 11 CyberAlert, how Dan Rather suggested on Friday that Matley's conclusion that the Jerry Killian signature was valid translated into a validation of the documents. Rather asserted: "Matley finds the signatures to be some of the most compelling evidence."

On the September 10 CBS Evening News, Rather contended: "Document and handwriting examiner Marcel Matley analyzed the documents for CBS News. He says he believes they are real, but is concerned about exactly what is being examined by some of the people now questioning the documents. Because deterioration occurs each time a document is reproduced, and the documents being analyzed outside of CBS have been photocopied, faxed, scanned and downloaded, and are far removed from the documents CBS started with, which were also photocopies."
Over video of Rather and Matley in front of a cork board with huge blow-ups of Killian's signature from the memos, Rather explained: "Document and handwriting examiner Marcel Matley did this interview with us prior to the 60 Minutes broadcast. He looked at the documents and the signatures of Colonel Jerry Killian, comparing known documents with the Colonel's signature on the newly discovered ones."
Matley: "We looked basically at what's called significant or insignificant features to determine whether it's the same person or not. I have no problem identifying them. I would say based on our available handwriting evidence, yes, this is the same person."
Rather: "Matley finds the signatures to be some of the most compelling evidence. We talked to him again today by satellite."
Rather to Matley, who appeared via satellite: "Are you surprised that questions come about these? We're not, but I was wondering if you were surprised?"
Matley: "I knew going in that this was dynamite one way or the other, and I knew that potentially it was far more potential damage to me professionally than benefit to me, and I knew that. But we seek the truth, that's what we do. You know, you're supposed to put yourself out, to seek the truth and take what comes from it."

For the full rundown of Rather's September 10 presentation, in which Matley was his only expert: www.mediaresearch.org

Now, an excerpt from the September 14 Washington Post story, "Expert Cited by CBS Says He Didn't Authenticate Papers," by Michael Dobbs and Howard Kurtz which took up over half of page A8 in the hard copy edition and quoted MRC President Brent Bozell:

..."I am personally 100 percent sure that they are fake," said Joseph M. Newcomer, author of several books on Windows programming, who worked on electronic typesetting techniques in the early 1970s. Newcomer said he had produced virtually exact replicas of the CBS documents using Microsoft Word formatting and the Times New Roman font.

Newcomer drew an analogy with an art expert trying to determine whether a painting of unknown provenance was painted by Leonardo Da Vinci. "If I was looking for a Da Vinci, I would look for characteristic brush strokes," he said. "If I found something that was painted with a modern synthetic brush, I would know that I have a forgery."...

A detailed examination of the CBS documents beside authenticated Killian memos and other documents generated by Bush's 147th Fighter Interceptor Group suggests at least three areas of difference that are difficult to reconcile:

-- Word-processing techniques. Of more than 100 records made available by the 147th Group and the Texas Air National Guard, none used the proportional spacing techniques characteristic of the CBS documents. Nor did they use a superscripted "th" in expressions such as "147th Group" and or "111th Fighter Intercept Squadron."

In a CBS News broadcast Friday night rebutting allegations that the documents had been forged, Rather displayed an authenticated Bush document from 1968 that included a small "th" next to the numbers "111" as proof that Guard typewriters were capable of producing superscripts. In fact, say Newcomer and other experts, the document aired by CBS News does not contain a superscript, because the top of the "th" character is at the same level as the rest of the type. Superscripts rise above the level of the type.

[The very observation I made in the September 11 CyberAlert. See the September 11 CyberAlert item #1 for a screen shot CBS showed of the two versions of the superscripted "th": www.mediaresearch.org ]

-- Factual problems. A CBS document purportedly from Killian ordering Bush to report for his annual physical, dated May 4, 1972, gives Bush's address as "5000 Longmont #8, Houston." This address was used for many years by Bush's father, George H.W. Bush. National Guard documents suggest that the younger Bush stopped using that address in 1970 when he moved into an apartment, and did not use it again until late 1973 or 1974, when he moved to Cambridge, Mass., to attend Harvard Business School.

One CBS memo cites pressure allegedly being put on Killian by "Staudt," a reference to Col. Walter B. "Buck" Staudt, one of Bush's early commanders. But the memo is dated Aug. 18, 1973, nearly a year and a half after Staudt retired from the Guard. Questioned about the discrepancy over the weekend, CBS officials said that Staudt was a "mythic figure" in the Guard who exercised influence from behind the scenes even after his retirement.

-- Stylistic differences. To outsiders, how an officer wrote his name and rank or referred to his military unit may seem arcane and unimportant. Within the military, however, such details are regulated by rules and tradition, and can be of great significance. The CBS memos contain several stylistic examples at odds with standard Guard procedures, as reflected in authenticated documents.

In memos previously released by the Pentagon or the White House, Killian signed his rank "Lt Col" or "Lt Colonel, TexANG," in a single line after his name without periods. In the CBS memos, the "Lt Colonel" is on the next line, sometimes with a period but without the customary reference to TexANG, for Texas Air National Guard.

An ex-Guard commander, retired Col. Bobby W. Hodges, whom CBS originally cited as a key source in authenticating its documents, pointed to discrepancies in military abbreviations as evidence that the CBS memos are forgeries. The Guard, he said, never used the abbreviation "grp" for "group" or "OETR" for an officer evaluation review, as in the CBS documents. The correct terminology, he said, is "gp" and "OER."...

CBS executives have pointed to Matley as their lead expert on whether the memos are genuine, and included him in a "CBS Evening News" defense of the story Friday. Matley said he spent five to eight hours examining the memos. "I knew I could not prove them authentic just from my expertise," he said. "I can't say either way from my expertise, the narrow, narrow little field of my expertise."

In looking at the photocopies, he said, "I really felt we could not definitively say which font this is." But, he said, "I didn't see anything that would definitively tell me these are not authentic."

Asked about Matley's comments, CBS spokeswoman Sandy Genelius said: "In the end, the gist is that it's inconclusive. People are coming down on both sides, which is to be expected when you're dealing with copies of documents."

Questions about the CBS documents have grown to the point that they overshadow the allegations of favorable treatment toward Bush.

Prominent conservatives such as Rush Limbaugh are insisting the documents are forged. New York Times columnist William Safire said yesterday that CBS should agree to an independent investigation. Brent Bozell, president of the Media Research Center, called on the network to apologize, saying: "The CBS story is a hoax and a fraud, and a cheap and sloppy one at that. It boggles the mind that Dan Rather and CBS continue to defend it."

END of Excerpt

For the September 14 Washington Post story in full: www.washingtonpost.com

For a side-by-side comparison of a known genuine 1973 Killian memo to a CBS memo purportedly by Killian, see the Post posting of artwork which accompanied the article: www.washingtonpost.com


If CBS News has lost the Washington Post, it's time to give up the pretense.

-- Brent Baker