Skip to comments."The OETR Scam"
Posted on 09/13/2004 9:35:32 PM PDT by Sir Gawain
I just got an e-mail from someone calling himself "JFH" which raises an intriguing question about an acronym used in one of the Killian docs. Jeff Goldstein wrote a post yesterday about a reference in the August 18, 1973 memo to something called an "OETR". Two people familiar with military terminology e-mailed Jeff to say that the acronym the author of the memo meant to use was "OER" -- an abbreviation for "Officer Effectiveness Report". Read Jeff's post and you'll see that his contacts are quite adamant that "OER" is a commonly used term and that no one familiar with military jargon would botch it in a memo. Or click here and see the listings for "O" on a webpage devoted to military abbreviations. "OER" is listed. "OETR" is not.
Enter JFH, who agrees with Jeff's contacts.
I wondered how could the forger [be] so clueless on using a made-up acronym of OETR when every officer in the Air Force and Army knows the acronym is OER. . . . The acronym OER is so pervasive in the Air Force community that every officer's wife and kid (as I was during this period) knew what it was. These are the most important documents of an officer's career. It is worth much more than it[s] weight in gold as it drives the promotion process. How could anyone ever call this thing an OETR? . . . .
It was only after a commenter to Jeff's post pointed to an anti-Bush website called the "AWOL Project" that it all became clear.
J's point is a simple one (and please note that he's not saying the webmaster of the site is the forger). If you click the "AWOL Project" link and scroll down about three-quarters of the way, you come across a cache of documents underneath a header entitled . . . "The OETR Scam". The same faulty acronym.
How did the AWOL Project webmaster get "OETR" from "OER"? J thinks he knows. He says if you click the document entitled "Notice of Missing or Correction of Officer Effectiveness Training Report (6-29-73)" you'll see a heading at the top of the first page that looks like it reads "Officer Effectiveness Training Report." But, says J, it doesn't:
Because of a hole punch in this document, the website authors missed the fact that the name of the form is actually: Notice of Missing or Correction of Officer Effectiveness / Training Report. The slash which you can barely make out (and trust me, there is a slash there as I can explain my certainty if you need me to) show[s] that this form is used for notifications for both an OER and a Training Report (don't have a lot of detail on this report yet; but it makes sense that training reports that record success[ful] completion of formal training are almost as important to get corrected or added before a promotion board meets). But if this document is your starting point in an investigation into your biased AWOL story, you may have [missed the slash and] thought that this form was for correcting "OETRs".
J points out that the correct acronym -- "OER" -- is actually printed right there on the form in boxes 4, 8, and 12, but the print is small enough that the webmaster might have missed it and followed the (apparent) acronym in the heading instead. J also notes that the three other documents listed under "The OETR Scam" as "Officer Effectiveness Training Reports" are, in fact, OERs (see the bottom right of the first page of each).
J wonders if perhaps the header on the AWOL Project used to read "The OER Scam" and was recently changed after the August 18, 1973 memo came to light to make the terminology conform to that document. Answer: no. Here's a Google cache of the site from August 20th that includes the "OETR" acronym. And here's another one from September 6th. The new Killian memos weren't released by CBS until September 8th.
So what does all this amount to? Two things. First, the fact that the August 18, 1973 memo bungled a commonly used bit of military terminology suggests that the author wasn't Killian and, therefore, that the document is a forgery. That's assuming, of course, that J is right about the usage of "OER" versus "OETR", which I think he is; if anyone disagrees with him on that point, e-mail me or leave a comment below and I'll mention it. Second, the fact that the author of the document made the same novice mistake about the same acronym as an anti-Bush website suggests that he might have visited the site before writing the document and picked up the "OETR" acronym for them. Needless to say, this would also rule out Killian as the author while shedding a little light on the real author's motives.
I want to emphasize again that neither J nor I is accusing the webmaster of the AWOL Project site of being the forger. On the contrary: A pamphlet posted on the site written by Gerald Lechliter uses the correct heading of the "OETR" form ("Officer Effectiveness / Training Report", replete with slash) and avoids using the erroneous aconym. All we want to know is how that strange, apparently unknown abbreviation ended up first on an anti-Bush website and then, later, in a primary source document purported to have been written thirty years ago.
One more fact for you to chew on as you digest all this. A Google search of the phrase "officer effectiveness report" returns over 400 results. A search of "officer effectiveness training report" returns only 10. And every last one of them has to do with George W. Bush supposedly being AWOL from the Texas Air National Guard.
Do you happen to have links to all of the Bush military records?
The AWB Has Expired - Gun Owners Have Won Again For All Americans!
Nope, sorry. Maybe backhoe does?
A reply to this posting on allahpundit gives another discrepancy in the documents:
As a former Air Force officer, you are correct in your OER reporting. In Officer Training School we used an OETR Officer Evaluation Training Report for Officer Trainees, but as far as I know--this wasn't used anywhere else. Also, no officer would have ever called another officer Bush, it would have been Lt Bush, Capt Bush etc. This last name reference to an officer writing of another officer tipped me off to this obvious forgery
Posted by william at September 13, 2004 10:02 PM
Keep going folks - the more ammo in this forgery debacle the better.
This could be very significant in tracking the culprit down.....We certainly know they did NOT have any military background.....That limits it somewhat.
the plot thickens...less and less likely forger familiar with TANG..or else an out in case he is caught...
Interesting speculation here:
on the trail of the forger...
This is interesting...
I knew that.
From a link in your article:
And on this one:
OFFICER APPOINTMENT: Discharged from enlisted status 3 Sep 1968 and commissioned in the Texas Air National Guard 4 Sep 1968.
HAHAAHA>........so much for the brochure the Dems were so excited about this morning......that proves he was in the United States Air Force!
The internet sure is wonderful. Expertise from all over the world is there almost instantaneously.
(Dan. Oh, Dan. Better come on over and have a look at this.)
I heard it on TV or here that OETR did not make sense.
It's a conspiracy, I tell ya.
Does anyone know if Ollie North was talking about this a couple of nights ago? Even though I despise O'RileMe I don't watch any news but fox. I remember someone talking about these differences.
Don't you know the dems are all over this place now. We will probably even have a few "undercovers" mining for information.
Thse guys sure spent a lot of time swatting at a gnat
Marty Heldt's fingerprints to seem to be on this.IMHO..
But I just have this feeling that if the culprit is ever found out, he will come from a small town outside of Boston, Mass. And I'm not talking about John Kerry either.
There are a couple of other names mentioned. I thought Heldt lived in Iowa. Who might this quote reference?
This was one area I thought didn't look right and darn if it wasn't on Fox a couple days later and then posted here.
Posted by TheLion to deport
On News/Activism ^ 09/11/2004 11:27:21 AM EDT · 141 of 160 ^
I found the info finally on the OETR:
Later in the newscast, Campenni sat down with anchor Jim Angle. Campenni brought up the August 18, 1973 "CYA" memo (online: http://www.cbsnews.com/htdocs/pdf/BushGuardaugust18.pdf ), which referred to how "Staudt has obviously pressured Hodges" and how "Staudt is pushing to sugar coat it." Campenni pointed out that General "Buck" Staudt had retired in 1972, so it would not be logical that Staudt would any longer be in Killian's line of command.
Campenni added, citing the same memo: "The other issue on that particular letter, there's another comment further down, OETD,' that's the, I presume, OETR.' That's referring to the Officer Efficiency Report...But the term of art was OER. Now it's OES. OETR,' I went and looked in the Air Force glossary for that period, that's Officer Education Training Repositories -- totally unrelated to that. So I don't know why someone who would be doing these things all the time would put the wrong acronym in there for that."
Oh, yes...yes! I thought I remembered something like that, but couldn't remember where!
Thank you for restoring my sanity!
an Iowa farmer named Marty Heldt bent advancing the theory that George W. Bush's was a deserter
In January 2004, former Democratic political consultant Brooks Gregory identified Marty Heldt as peddling a bogus set of documents
Oh, boy...read this one!
I think we all lost it this week!
The memos are forgeries. The story is bogus. The memo were done a modern
> > word processor or computer, and not on 1970's era typewriter.
> > David
> What evidence do you have?
I have the same evidence I used to discredit Marty Heldt in 2000. It is
almost comical some of the obvious alterations and these documents came from
the exact same place.
Just one little item. The address PO Box 34567, is a bit dubious, and that's
what tipped me off back then. I talked to Marty Heldt about that. His answer
was that this was Killians home address. So, I decided to check. This
address was, at the time shown on the document, unassigned. Further, the
address was a po box at the main post office in Houston, Texas. The zip code
was for a small town in Texas, Genoa, Texas that did NOT have po boxes.
From, there, I went on to prove the document titled "Chronological" had been
altered, and done by someone that had no idea what a military date format
That took me about 3 days after which, Marty stopped communicating with me.
I think I know who dummied up all of these documents but I can't prove it.
But I just have this feeling that if the culprit is ever found out, he will
come from a small town outside of Boston, Mass. And I'm not talking about
John Kerry either.
Bump for keep it up.
Great name....The Horrible Arctic Bear?
Thanks for that link. I had speculated that Marty Heldt seemed like a real candidate for either forging and knowlingly passing the forged documents... Whizbang has more background on that.....
And .. doesn't that fact (the military stuff) eliminate Burkett ..??
I've heard that the documents were "dictated", which is supposed to explain why there are no "originals". That could account for them not being in proper military form. If it was Burkett who dictated the info, wouldn't he have known the proper military form to use ..??
Where's Lynn, Massachusetts?
Any ideas who this might be? There is absolutely no way that Dan Rather trusted those documents, he either trusted the source or was blinded by the substance. Yet he could have made the point in his story with some qualifications regarding the authenticity and all of the talking heads would have been with him because they believe the substance too. But he didn't do that, so what source would Rather defend and continue to stick with while he is made fool of?
Thanks; interesting indeed.
Lynn is a little north of Boston if I remember right.
This is getting fun!
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Is the answer to your tagline...because they weren't on John Kerry's boat?
Commonly known as Grizzly Bear?
Telephone number - www.awolbush.com
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How do you dictate a signature?
You can see the real Officer Effectiveness Report" OER along with a request form for missing Officer Effectiveness / Training Report here http://www.usatoday.com/news/bushdocs/4-Cover_illegible.pdf