When Political Magazines Duke It Out

The Washington Post reports that one political magazine is accusing a competing political magazine of publishing untrue stories by a soldier serving in the Iraq War:

A magazine gets a hot story straight from a soldier in Iraq and
publishes his writing, complete with gory details, under a pseudonym.
The stories are chilling: An Iraqi boy befriends American troops and
later has his tongue cut out by insurgents. Soldiers mock a disfigured
woman sitting near them in a dining hall. As a diversion, soldiers run
over dogs with armored personnel carriers. Compelling stuff, and,
according to the Army, not true.

Three articles by the soldier
have run since January in The New Republic, a liberal magazine with a
small circulation owned by Canadian company CanWest Corp. The stories,
which ran under the name "Scott Thomas," were called into question by
The Weekly Standard, a conservative magazine with a small circulation
owned by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. The Standard last month challenged
bloggers to check the dispatches.

Since then, Pvt. Scott Thomas Beauchamp, of the 1st Battalion, 18th
Infantry, has come forward as the author. The New Republic said that
Beauchamp "came to its attention" through Elspeth Reeve, a
reporter-researcher at the magazine he later married.

The Army said this week it had concluded an investigation of Beauchamp’s claims and found them false.

The story-telling soldier has since signed three sworn affidavits admitting that he exaggerated the stories, according to the accusing party, The Weekly Standard.

Do you subscribe to either of these magazines? Has your impression of The Weekly Standard or the The New Republic changed after news of these allegations?

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Michelle Ryan

About Michelle Ryan

Michelle Ryan is obsessed with good food, great shoes and Alabama football way down South in Savannah, Georgia. She hasn’t met a kitchen gadget she hasn’t at least thought about buying (trying them is another story) and devotes her time to Bikram Yoga, baking and trying to overcome long-held finicky eating habits.