Frank Foer talks to The New York Observer:
Franklin Foer, editor of The New Republic, said in an interview that the documents relating to Scott Thomas Beauchamp that Matt Drudge posted this afternoon–and removed several hours later without explanation–could have only come from the Army.
Mr. Foer said he called TNR’s contact there, Major Kirk Luedeke, as soon as the documents appeared on Drudge’s site. According to Mr. Foer, Major Luedeke told him that the Army was “investigating the source of the leak,” though they did not explicitly take responsibility for it.
“It’s maddening to see the Army selectively leak to the Drudge Report things that we’ve been trying to obtain from them through Freedom of Information Act requests,” Mr. Foer said. “This fits a pattern in this case where the army has leaked a lot of stuff to right wing blogs.”
Wow. Where to begin?
“The Army” didn’t leak this. Someone in the Army certainly did — it’s obvious that the transcript came from their end of the phone line (the “unintelligible” bits are mostly on the TNR side, and there’s a note when Beauchamp takes a sip of water). But the leak wasn’t an official act by the Army. My best guess as to why Drudge took the story down is that Drudge’s source asked him to, because he (the source) is worried about getting in trouble for leaking.
FOIA requests take forever to process. TNR may be waiting on a request to see the memo, just as Bob Owens has been waiting on a request to see the memo and the phone call transcript. But TNR didn’t need to see the transcript. Foer was involved in the conversation! And his only response is to attack the Army for letting it leak?
That’s the kind of obvious question that The New York Observer strangely didn’t ask Foer — which explains why he’ll take their calls and not mine, I suppose.
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