A Skeptic's Battle Cry: 'Remember Nayirah!'

The Wisconsin State Journal advocates a US attack on Iraq, but WSJ columnist George Hesselberg remembers 'Nayirah.' He recently wrote a column suggesting "perhaps we should question some of the evidence being gathered to justify an invasion of Iraq. The column was not appreciated by several readers, including ... Teddy Fedkenheuer, of Baraboo: 'To either accuse or blame an American President of lying to the American people ... is un-American. ... You are also implying that his stand on Iraq is also 'smoke and mirrors.' I find that offensive.' ... It might be wise, at this time, to refer to "Nayirah," a 15-year-old Kuwaiti girl who shocked Congress with her testimony in October 1990, when she told of invading Iraqi soldiers throwing babies from incubators onto the cold hospital floor to die. Her testimony was a lie. She was part of an $11.5 million public relations campaign by the Hill and Knowlton, a well-known public relations company, to build backing for a war. The money came from the Kuwaiti government, laundered through Citizens for a Free Kuwait. The public relations campaign included lots of phony evidence. ... 'Nayirah,' it was revealed more than a year later, 'was not a simple hospital worker, but the daughter of Kuwait's ambassador to the U.S.' And that's why our hand-wringing ilk question everything."