Rumsfeld: Gee, Propaganda Is Wrong

In "his most specific comments thus far about the information operations program," U.S. Defense Secretary Rumsfeld told interviewer Charlie Rose that his reaction to reports that the Lincoln Group paid Iraqi newspapers to run Pentagon-written stories was, "Gee, that's not what we ought to be doing." Rumsfeld said "he had not been initially aware of the clandestine program, and ordered it shut down" after the Los Angeles Times report. However, "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." An anonymous source told the LA Times that "the program in Iraq was still active as of a week ago." In a separate talk, Rumsfeld said negative media coverage of the Iraq propaganda has a "chilling effect" on U.S. troops' "innovation" to win hearts and minds.


In a [ follow-up to the above story], Rumsfeld says he misspoke when he said the [[Lincoln Group]] propaganda program in Iraq had been stopped:

"I don't have knowledge as to whether it's been stopped. I do have knowledge it was put under review. I was correctly informed. And I just misstated the facts," Rumsfeld said at a Pentagon news briefing. ... He said that Gen. George Casey, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, was reviewing the practice. Previously, Casey has said he saw no reason to stop it.