Burkett's Phony Source


So who did Bill Burkett tell CBS he got the memos from? Former Guardsman George O. Conn.

From The New York Times:

Mr. Rather said that Mr. Burkett had initially refused to say who gave him the documents, and that CBS pressured him to do so. “We made it clear that the chain of possession was very important to us,” Mr. Rather said.

Mr. Rather recalled that Mr. Burkett had said he had gotten the documents from a former guard member who was now overseas. Mr. Rather said producers had tried to get in touch with him, but had not, though knowing his identity bolstered the team’s confidence just the same.

“It was a person who could have had direct access to Killian’s files,” he said. “That made it believable.”From a profile of Burkett by The Washington Post‘s Michael Dobbs:

A Feb. 13 story in the Boston Globe noted that a former Guardsman cited by Burkett as a key corroborating witness denied that he led Burkett to a room where Bush’s records were being vetted. “I have no recall of that whatsoever,” said George O. Conn, a former chief warrant officer with the Guard and a friend of Burkett’s. “None, zip, nada.” Burkett later said that Conn, a civilian employee of the U.S military in Germany, recanted his story because of political pressure from the White House.

Conn could not be reached to comment.Burkett may have figured that by naming a source who had publically repudiated his charges, that there would be no way CBS would approve the story. Boy was he wrong about that… [Ed – that’s just my hunch.]

Note to CBS fact checkers, Google could have saved you a load of heartache.

Quid Pro Quo


  1. Jeff Harrell September 21, 2004
  2. -S- September 21, 2004
  3. Reginald Thornton September 21, 2004
  4. -S- September 21, 2004
  5. Dodd September 21, 2004
  6. -S- September 21, 2004
  7. slim999 September 21, 2004
  8. McGehee September 21, 2004
  9. Daniel September 21, 2004
  10. Kevin Drum September 23, 2004