An Inconclusive Greywash
Jonathan Last says the CBS Report is a Whitewash, because it failed to address the main questions about the fraudulent Killian memos.
Now that I’ve read it all, I’m sticking with the term greywash—because it’s more insidious than an outright whitewash. A real whitewash would have energized the blogosphere (and possibly even CBS’ competitors) to dig further.
At 220+ pages plus appendices and exhibits, the report is quite exhaustive as far as recounting the entire sequence of events (although some crucial emails are only excerpted). It even contains some new information. But the wealth of detail serves to obscure the fact that on every single substantive issue, the report fails to follow through.
Are the documents legitimate? Inconclusive.
Where did the documents come from? Inconclusive.
Is there a serious problem with political bias at CBS News? Inconclusive.
Was there collusion between the Kerry campaign and CBS News? Although it cites an “appearance of conflict of interest,” again the report comes to no conclusion.
On each of these important issues, when the investigators encountered problems (such as contradictory stories from interviewees) they simply dropped the issue and reported “inconclusive.”
The question is, will the greywash succeed in dousing the criticism?