February 26, 2007

The Scandal that Refuses to Die: AP PR Director Alleges Iraqi General Lied About Jamil Hussein

The Jamil still-not-Hussein story is getting interesting again, with the AP's Director of Media Relations & Public Affairs, Linda Wagner, sending me an email early Saturday morning strongly implying that Iraqi Interior Ministry Spokesman Brigadier General Abdul-Karim Khalaf lied when he stated that he never confirmed the identity of the AP's two-year source as Jamil Hussein in an exclusive to Pajamas Media last week.

Wagner stated:

Mr. Owens,

AP knows that police officer Jamil Gholaim Hussein was its source. We did wish to obtain from Brigadier General Khalaf confirmation that Hussein is on the Iraqi police force, after Khalaf had earlier denied that fact. Khalaf provided that information on January 4.

An AP reporter attended the Iraqi Interior Ministry briefing on January 4. After the briefing, the AP reporter spoke to Khalaf who confirmed for the record what he had told that same reporter on the phone unofficially the night before:

* that Jamil Hussein's name could not be found in their initial search of their Iraqi police employee records.
* that subsequent searches of those records turned up Jamil Gholaim Hussein, which is the name AP reported in late November 2006.

Khalaf has since told the same thing to another AP reporter.

Linda Wagner
Director of Media Relations & Public Affairs
The Associated Press

I'd be very interested to see how BG Khalaf "provided that information" on January 4, if he in fact did so. He maintains, of course, that the story is quite the opposite, that the AP reporters he spoke with confirmed their source as someone with a different name (Jamil Gulaim Innad XX XXXXXXX [Name redacted for security reasons Ed.]), on two occasions.

If the Associated Press has documentation proving their allegation, then things could get very interesting for the Interior Ministry spokesman, but at this point, Wagner has refused to answer whether or not they have anything to support their contention, or if they are simply going on the word of their reporters, which are apparently the same reporters that have been completely unable to substantiate the claim that 24 people died in the Hurriyah mosque attacks with any physical evidence over the past three months.

The burden of proof rests fully on the Associated Press to prove that "Hussein" exists, and so far, they have fallen woefully short.

Posted by Confederate Yankee at February 26, 2007 02:50 PM

Bob, do you ever get the feeling you are like John Cleese holding a dead parrot and the AP is Eric Idle telling you that its 'resting'?

Posted by: BohicaTwentyTwo at February 26, 2007 03:08 PM