Monday, June 20, 2005

Downing Street Minutes are authentic

There has been very little doubt that the Downing Street Minutes and other memos obtained by the Sunday Times are authentic. Even when directly asked about the memos, neither President Bush nor Tony Blair claimed that the memos were forgeries or otherwise inauthentic; instead, both leaders flatly contradicted the information in the memos, without explaining why the information in the memos conflicts with their current (and historical) public statements. In fact, a portion of Blair's statement on June 7th ("And let me remind you that that memorandum was written before we then went to the United Nations.") implies that the Downing Street Minutes are indeed authentic.

Newsweek, in a recent five page article on the Downing Street Minutes and related memos, has found independent confirmation of the memos' authenticity,
"[T]wo senior British officials, who asked not to be further identified because of the sensitivity of the material, told NEWSWEEK in separate interviews that they had no reason to question the authenticity of either the documents published by the Sunday Times or the related documents - including the March 2002 options paper."
The article also has a good summary of the statements in the memos, along with why the memos are relevant (though it doesn't include any information on Conyers's hearing, since the article was written before that occurred).

Via American Street and Pharyngula.

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