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Special Report Glosses Over Tenet's Claim "Slam Dunk" Quote Was Misused

Reported by Janie - April 27, 2007 -

After no weapons of mass destruction were found in Iraq, the Bush Administration leaked information to the press regarding former CIA chief, George Tenet's claim that the intelligence indicated WMDs were a "slam dunk." In an interview with 60 Minutes, Tenet claimed this quote was misused by the Administration, and he had not been referring to what the Administration claimed he was referring to.

During last night's Special Report (4/26), Fox Correspondent Catherine Herridge filed a report on Tenet's CBS interview, focusing mainly on his defense of torture. Only at the very end of the piece did Herridge even mention the controversy over the comment, but neglected to explain what Tenet's claim actually was.

Herridge ended the segment, "In the interview Tenet does take issue with the Administration over the way his now famous 'slam dunk' comment was portrayed. According to CBS, Tenet claimed when no weapons of mass destruction were found, 'slam dunk' was leaked to the media and it destroyed Tenet's career."

For those not viewing the CBS interview would assume that Tenet did in fact state that WMDs were a "slam dunk", and the quote was not misused by the Administration. However, according to Tenet, this was false.

According to CNN:

"Tenet said his comment did not refer to whether Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, but related to what information could be used to make a public case for the war.

The 'slam-dunk' comment first surfaced in journalist Bob Woodward's 2004 book, "Plan of Attack,' which portrayed Tenet as assuring Bush that finding weapons of mass destruction in Iraq would be a virtual certainty.

'We can put a better case together for a public case. That's what I meant,' Tenet told 60 Minutes.

'I'll never believe that what happened that day informed the president's view or belief of the legitimacy or the timing of this war. Never!' said Tenet, whose memoirs 'At the Center of the Storm' are due to be published next week."

Of course, Herridge neglected to mention this part of the interview, and it reflects negatively on the Administration. Once again, Special Report misinformed its viewers, and protected the Bush Administration.