CBS Panel Overlooked Evidence That Discredited Memo

Former Texas Air National Guard member William Campenni makes a pretty compelling case in The Washington Times that Kirkpatrick & Lockhart Nicholson Graham LLP were being a bit disingenuous when they claimed that “it may never be possible for anyone to authenticate or discredit the documents.”

The selected memo is that dated May 4, 1972, wherein the late Lt. Col. Jerry Killian orders 1st Lt. Bush to report for a flight physical not later than May 14. This memo is the most expository of the memo forgeries for several reasons. First, while the other five memos may be considered Mr. Killian’s memos to self, and thus personal musings never intended for distribution, this particular memo is posited as a direct order to 1st Lt. Bush, mailed to his (wrong) home address. It was used obsessively by CBS and Bush opponents in the campaign as evidence of his refusal to obey a direct order. If any criminal or civil liabilities for fraud or forgery of government documents obtain, they would be most applicable to this document

…[H]ow do I prove this memo is a fake? Easy – for the weekend that 1st Lt. Bush was supposedly ordered to report for his physical, May 13-14, 1972, the Ellington Air Guard Base was closed. It was Mother’s Day. Except for emergencies, Air Guard units never drilled on Mother’s Day; the divorce lawyers would be waiting at the gate.

While CBS, in its rush to judgment, might have missed this fatal flaw in the Burkett memo, its investigative law firm, Kirkpatrick & Lockhart Nicholson Graham LLP, cannot be excused. Why? Because one of their investigating lawyers was informed of this fact on Nov. 15 and given a list of seven witnesses who worked in the same offices with Jerry Killian every day in 1972.Paraphrasing Campenni; to believe the documents were not discredited you would have to believe that Killian, the squadron commander and one of the drill-schedule planners, was unaware on May 4 that the clinic was closed the next weekend.


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