Fact Checking Bush’s Speech (An Effort Ignored by Fox)

Last night I noted several different sources which found factual errors in President Bush’s speech on Iraq. Factcheck.org has now posted their fact checking. From the summary:

President Bush played loose with the facts in his address to the nation Thursday night as he tried to convince the American public that the surge in U.S. troops in Iraq has made the country more stable.

  • He said “36 nations … have troops on the ground in Iraq.” In fact, his own State Department puts the number at 25.
  • He said “ordinary life” was returning to Baghdad. Perhaps. In fact, news reports describe the city as starkly segregated with Shiites and Sunnis living in separate neighborhoods, which are walled off from one another with huge concrete barricades.
  • He said Baqubah in Diyala province was “cleared.” But the Washington Post quotes a State Department official as saying the security situation there was not stable.
  • He said that “the Iraqi Army is becoming more capable,” which may be true. But the Iraqi defense minister says it’ll be 2012 before the army will be even 60 percent capable of protecting the nation from external threats.
The full article is available on line here.

While many sources were interested in fact checking the speech, one “news” organization was not–Fox News. Media Matters reports that they were also the only network not to present the Democratic response.

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