THE L WORD….Remember all those pro-U.S. stories the Pentagon was contracting with the Lincoln Group to write and then paying the Iraqi press to publish? Donald Rumsfeld was asked about that program last night and gave one of his trademark Mr. Rogers answers:

“When we heard about it, we said, ‘Gee, that’s not what we ought to be doing,’ ” Rumsfeld said Friday during a taped interview on PBS’ “The Charlie Rose Show.”…. “They stopped doing that,” he said.

The LA Times is too discreet to say it outright, but as the rest of the article makes clear, Rumsfeld was lying:

One person familiar with Lincoln Group’s operations, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of an ongoing investigation, said the program in Iraq was still active as of a week ago.

Army Gen. George W. Casey, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, said during a Dec. 16 news conference ? more than two weeks after the existence of the operation was revealed ? that it had not been shut down.

“We did a preliminary assessment shortly after the [news stories] came out, and we concluded that we were operating within our authorities and the appropriate legal procedures. And so we have not suspended any of the processes up to now,” Casey said.

I’m sure Rumsfeld will get a stern talking to from his boss over this. After all, we can’t have administration officials misleading the American public, can we?

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