Date registered: Sep 2004
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
New evidence uncovered
New York, Sept. 19, 2004
(CBS/Pair o' D News) ﾃつ*CBS News has obtained an email written from Lt. Col. Jerry Killian, George W. Bush's Commander in the Texas Air National Guard, to Major General Bobby Hodges, Killian's immediate superior, which tends to confirm the authenticity of disputed documents that CBS News obtained from Killian's personal file earlier this month. ﾃつ*The email, sent on August 24, 1973, appears to have been sent from Killian's Yahoo! email address, firstname.lastname@example.org, to an email address belonging to Hodges, email@example.com.
In the email, Killian specifically mentions all four of the disputed documents that CBS News previously obtained from an unimpeachable source. ﾃつ*Said CBS News President Andrew Heyward, "Our source for the email is also unimpeachable, so don't even think about questioning it."
Dan Rather, managing editor of CBS News, stated, "This latest document confirms what we already know, and what CBS News has been reporting all along: George W. Bush received preferential treatment to get into the Texas Air National Guard, and failed to live up to the expectations of the Guard while he served." ﾃつ*Rather added,ﾃつ* "We know that some, including partisan political operatives will continue to dispute the authenticity of the Killian files. ﾃつ*But one look at this 1973 email should convince all but the most partisan observers."
The email corroborates key parts of the story that aired on 60 Minutes II on September 8, 2004. ﾃつ*For example, the email mentions that Col. Walter "Buck" Staudt was pressuring Hodges to "sugar coat" then-Lt. Bush's rating, that Killian ordered Lt. Bush to report for his annual physical, and that Killian suspended Bush's flight status after he missed his physical. ﾃつ*The email also confirms that Bush received preferential treatment to get into the Guard.
Soon after this story was posted, several "bloggers" questioned the authenticity of the email, noting that Yahoo! wasn't founded until 1994, and commercial email didn't come into existence until 1989. In fact, almost every expert consulted by CBS News for this story questioned the email's authenticity.ﾃつ*
But Dick Kratz, a technology consultant who authenticated the email for CBS News, noted that someone would have to go "out of their way" to create fake email accounts with the names of Lt. Col. Killian and Maj. Gen. Hodges. ﾃつ*"You would have had to create two separate email accounts, with two passwords."
CBS News also contacted Al Gore, the inventor of the internet, regarding the documents. ﾃつ*He issued the following statement: "While I cannot say for certain, the email in question probably verifies that I invented email well before August 24, 1973."