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BREAKING: Conned big time "CIA Witness" to White House Lying about Intel story found to be FRAUD
Capitol Hill Blue ^ | July 9, 2003 | Doug Thompson

Posted on 07/09/2003 4:04:00 PM PDT by Doug Thompson

Damn, I hate it when I've been had and I've been had big time.

In 1982, while I was working for Congressman Manuel Lujan of New Mexico, a man came up to a me during a gathering in Albuquerque and introduced himself as Terrance J. Wilkinson. He said he was a security consultant and gave me a business card with his name and just a Los Angeles phone number.

A few weeks later, he called my Washington office and asked to meet for lunch. He seemed to know a lot about the nuclear labs in New Mexico and said he had conducted "security profiles" for both Los Alamos and Sandia National Labs. Lujan served on the committee with oversight on both labs and he offered his services if we ever needed briefings.

We already had nuclear experts on the committee, on loan from the Department of Energy, and we never used Wilkinson for briefings but we kept in touch over the years. He said he had served in Vietnam with Army Special Force, worked for Air America, later for the FBI and as a consultant for the CIA. He said he had helped other Republican members of Congress I called some friends in other GOP offices and they said yes, they knew Terry Wilkinson.

"You can trust him, he's one of the good guys," one chief of staff told me. When I left politics and returned to journalism, Wilkinson became a willing, but always unnamed, source.

Over the last couple of years, Wilkinson served as either a primary or secondary source on a number of stories that have appeared in Capitol Hill Blue regarding intelligence activities. In early stories, I collaborated his information with at least one more source. His information usually proved accurate and, over time, I came to depend on him as a source without additional backup.

On Tuesday, we ran a story headlined "White House admits Bush wrong about Iraqi nukes." For the first time, Wilkinsson said he was willing to go on the record and told a story about being present, as a CIA contract consultant, at two briefings with Bush. He said he was retired now and was fed up and wanted to go public.

"He (Bush) said that if the current operatives working for the CIA couldn't prove the story was true, then the agency had better find some who could," Wilkinson said in our story. "He said he knew the story was true and so would the world after American troops secured the country."

After the story ran, we received a number of emails or phone calls that (1) either claimed Wilkinson was lying or (2) doubted his existence. I quickly dismissed the claims. After all, I had known this guy for 20+ years and had no doubt about his credibility. Some people wanted to talk to him, so I forwarded those requests on to him via email. He didn't answer my emails, which I found odd. I should have listened to a bell that should have been going off in my ear.

Today, a White House source I know and trust said visitor logs don't have any record of anyone named Terrance J. Wilkinson ever being present at a meeting with the President. Then a CIA source I trust said the agency had no record of a contract consultant with that name. "Nobody, and I mean nobody, has ever heard of this guy," my source said.

I tried calling Terry's phone number. I got a recorded message from a wireless phone provider saying the number was no longer in service. I tried a second phone number I had for him. Same result.

Then a friend from the Hill called.

"You've been had," she said. "I know about this guy. He's been around for years, claiming to have been in Special Forces, with the CIA, with NSA. He hasn't worked for any of them and his name is not Terrance Wilkinson."

Both of his phone numbers have Los Angeles area codes but an identity check through Know-X today revealed no record of anyone named Terrance J. Wilkinson ever having lived in LA or surrounding communities.

His email address turns out to be a blind forward to a free email service where anyone can sign up and get an email account. Because it was not one of the usual "free" services like Hotmail, Yahoo or such, I did not recognize it as one (although you'd think that someone like me would have known better).

The bottom line is that someone has been running a con on me for 20 some years and I fell for it like a little old lady in a pigeon drop scheme. I've spent the last two hours going through the database of Capitol Hill Blue stories and removing any that were based on information from Wilkinson (or whoever he is). I've also removed his name, quotes and claims from Tuesday's story about the White House and the uranium claims.

Erasing the stories doesn't erase the fact that we ran articles containing informattion that, given the source, were most likely inaccurate. And it doesn't erase the sad fact that my own arrogance allowed me to be conned.

It will be a long time (and perhaps never) before I trust someone else who comes forward and offers inside information. The next one who does had better be prepared to produce a birth certificate, a driver's license and his grandmother's maiden name.

Any news publication exists on the trust of its readers. Because I depended on a source that was not credible, I violated the trust that the readers of Capitol Hill Blue placed in me.

I was wrong. I am sorry.

© Copyright 2003 by Capitol Hill Blue


TOPICS: Breaking News; Foreign Affairs; Government; News/Current Events; US: New Mexico
KEYWORDS: 20yearsofsuckerhood; admiralboorda; afoolandhissources; andstillnonames; apology; batboy; beatitdoug; bush; capitalhillblue; capitolhillbs; ccrm; chb; chump; cia; correction; corrrection; debkaneedsdoug; dougthompson; fraud; gocheckcaponesvault; hoax; inaccuracies; iraq; itsalongroadbackdoug; keywordsgohere; laughingstock; leavefrdoug; lies; longwalkshortpier; loseyourdayjob; lostcredibility; makesthenytlookgood; marcash; markash; meaculpa; media; mediabias; nosoupforyou; notreadyforprimetime; rankamateurmistake; retraction; ruinedpermanently; salonishiring; scoop; suuuuuucker; terrancejwilkinson; terrancewilkinson; thescoopthatwasnt; tookthedougforawalk; truthout; uranium; whosthefraud; wilkerson; wilkinson; wilkinsonsbitch; wmd; yourestilllyingdoug; youvebeenowneddoug
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To: adam_az
Eschoir?
51 posted on 07/09/2003 4:29:54 PM PDT by cornelis
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To: Endeavor
ping
52 posted on 07/09/2003 4:30:59 PM PDT by habs4ever
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To: Cicero
Does anyone have a link to the threads on which said digging was done?
53 posted on 07/09/2003 4:31:15 PM PDT by piasa (Attitude adjustments offered here free of charge.)
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To: Dog
SFR is an android.... but I repeat myself.
54 posted on 07/09/2003 4:31:23 PM PDT by glock rocks (remember -- only you can prevent fundraisers... become a monthly donor)
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To: sistergoldenhair
ping
55 posted on 07/09/2003 4:31:57 PM PDT by facedown (Armed in the Heartland)
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To: Doug Thompson
I think that's a really good apology.

It'd be so much easier to just bury it and forget it to save face. But, the apology was the honorable way to go.

bravo.

56 posted on 07/09/2003 4:32:55 PM PDT by Jhoffa_ (BREAKING: Supreme Court Finds Right to Sodomy, Sammy & Frodo elated.)
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Comment #57 Removed by Moderator

To: Dog
Is the media using the info from this con man to push the Iraqi uranium story?

I don't know .. but I do know there are some liberals that are looking in to this story in hopes of finding ANYTHING on Bush

58 posted on 07/09/2003 4:33:32 PM PDT by Mo1
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To: Doug Thompson
I am impressed that you are willing to admit your mistake. You didn't wait or try to hide it.

Correcting the damage, and exposing the Rat operative, are the next things on the to-do list.

59 posted on 07/09/2003 4:33:36 PM PDT by Dog Gone
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To: Doug Thompson
Thanks for posting this.
60 posted on 07/09/2003 4:34:07 PM PDT by Registered (77% of the mentally ill live in poverty, that leaves 23% doing quite well!)
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To: Doug Thompson
Doug, can you get this information to Sean Hannity for tonights show???

GW is getting hammered by Chris Matthews. This story has to be corrected in the rest of the media ASAP.

61 posted on 07/09/2003 4:34:16 PM PDT by mware
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To: Doug Thompson
Instead of just deleting the references, it would've been nice to have a list of all the stories that this con was quoted in, to better correct anyone who might have read these stories in the past and carried their misconceptions to this day.
62 posted on 07/09/2003 4:34:16 PM PDT by MaxPlus305
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To: Doug Thompson
Well, fine. But, the obvious question is, "Were you lying then or are you lying now?"

Why should we believe that what you've written above is truthful? How do we know what you said wasn't the result of extortion, threats, a bribe, or a promise of future goodies for retracting the first story. Claiming you were conned is a very small price to pay and from the comments, looks like it has increased your standing.

But, who is the guy? He had maintained a positive and useful cover for 20 years. You used him before but never had to contact him to check a fact or ask for a lead? And, why/how would he have identified you 20 years ago as a person he could con 20 years hence? Has any money, either way, ever changed hands? And, if you, why not several of your coequals?

I'm sorry, the story is too neat, too glib. There is more to it than has been written here.

63 posted on 07/09/2003 4:36:02 PM PDT by Tacis
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To: Doug Thompson
Don't beat your self up, Doug. Sh!t happens, what the hell! Next time somebody is selling you a bill of goods, make sure, you know "exactly", who you're talking to.

In God we trust, all others, identify yourselves, with two US forms of identification.

64 posted on 07/09/2003 4:36:06 PM PDT by danmar ("The two most common elements in the Universe is Hydrogen and Stupidity" Albert Einstein)
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To: Doug Thompson
Uh.... WOW....

excuse me....

WOW...

Oh my God! Wow!

And the NY Times, Washington Post, ABC, CNN, Guardian or any other news regugitator that used your source as the basis for an outrageous attack on Bush said what when provided this information? (I know others didn't site the source, just repeated the basic claim of insider info about Bush)

Uh... thank you, by the way... Wow!

I claim to be a conservative, but I define that as a cynical liberal (I believe in most of the ideals, but don't think for minute that Teddy Kennedy, et al, are out for anyone but Teddy boy). You, however, have just messed up my beautiful cynicism about my most loathed profession (g).

65 posted on 07/09/2003 4:36:39 PM PDT by Phsstpok
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To: Dog
No kidding. He went out of his way to get quoted this time and then to end his contact completely by changing his phone number. He definitely wanted to go out in a blaze of attacking the President.
66 posted on 07/09/2003 4:37:10 PM PDT by rwfromkansas ("There is dust enough on some of your Bibles to write 'damnation' with your fingers." C.H. Spurgeon)
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Comment #67 Removed by Moderator

To: Support Free Republic
...and further more, you are rude, cruel and inhumane! ;{)
68 posted on 07/09/2003 4:38:12 PM PDT by danmar ("The two most common elements in the Universe is Hydrogen and Stupidity" Albert Einstein)
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To: Doug Thompson
You're a helluva guy for admitting it. More power to you, and keep up the good work.
69 posted on 07/09/2003 4:39:31 PM PDT by Xenalyte (I may not agree with your bumper sticker, but I'll defend to the death your right to stick it)
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To: livius
Yeah, I wonder how many journalists are writing stories based on "unnamed sources" that are bogus.
70 posted on 07/09/2003 4:39:53 PM PDT by My2Cents ("Well....there you go again.")
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To: Dog Gone
Do rat operatives have an attention span as long as 20 years?

Besides Hillary, that is- but she wasn't just a rat, IMHO, she's a red.

71 posted on 07/09/2003 4:40:01 PM PDT by piasa (Attitude adjustments offered here free of charge.)
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To: Tacis; mware; Dog Gone
Agreed.........there is something screwy with this story. A source of 20 years suddenly gets exposed and only now is found to have feed a reporter bad info for 20 long years.

I'm not buying it..

72 posted on 07/09/2003 4:40:11 PM PDT by Dog
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To: Cicero
If he has been sourced for the past 20 years, why is it that his name comes up nowhere in every search engine
73 posted on 07/09/2003 4:40:22 PM PDT by MJY1288
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To: Doug Thompson
It takes a honest man to admit he screwed up. The road back up will be long, hard, and hard-fought, but I hope you're willing to persevere to regain the public trust. Good Luck!
74 posted on 07/09/2003 4:42:11 PM PDT by Maigrey (Member of the Dose's Jesus Freaks and Gonzo News Service)
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To: My2Cents
lots
75 posted on 07/09/2003 4:43:08 PM PDT by rwfromkansas ("There is dust enough on some of your Bibles to write 'damnation' with your fingers." C.H. Spurgeon)
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To: Doug Thompson
"You can trust him, he's one of the good guys," one chief of staff told me

"Nobody, and I mean nobody, has ever heard of this guy," my source said.

Well, SOMEBODY has heard of him. Who was that chief of staff? Sounds to me like none of these sources are very reliable.

76 posted on 07/09/2003 4:44:26 PM PDT by Ima Lurker
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To: Doug Thompson
hmmm a French Spy? French disruptor by placing false information in "the loop"?
77 posted on 07/09/2003 4:44:39 PM PDT by longtermmemmory (Vote!)
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To: MJY1288
I have an online detective system, that I bought for research the kids were doing on the first class to graduate from the school I teach at. I am going to do a search on that one.
78 posted on 07/09/2003 4:45:04 PM PDT by mware
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To: MJY1288
If he has been sourced for the past 20 years, why is it that his name comes up nowhere in every search engine

Because his alias is Greg Packer?

79 posted on 07/09/2003 4:45:06 PM PDT by unspun ("Do everything in love." - No I don't look anything like her but I do like to hear "Unspun w/ AnnaZ")
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To: Doug Thompson
This guy wouldn't happen to look alot like Bob Mulholland would he?
;-)
80 posted on 07/09/2003 4:45:20 PM PDT by Zathras
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To: rwfromkansas
You have FR Mail
81 posted on 07/09/2003 4:46:27 PM PDT by MJY1288
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To: Dog
You have mail
82 posted on 07/09/2003 4:46:32 PM PDT by Mo1
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To: Dog
"William good job......the story here is who went to all this trouble to accuse the President of lieing.."

Certainly NOT the Democrats....

They LOVE Presidents who lie under oath, lie when not under oath, -- telling big lies, little lies, useless lies, cover his ass lies, puff up his caved in chest lies, white lies, black lies, even lies about his pitiful whimpy and twisted little winky.............you get my drift?

So it couldn't be those a$$holes....

Semper Fi

83 posted on 07/09/2003 4:46:38 PM PDT by river rat (War works......It brings Peace... Give war a chance to destroy Jihadists...)
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To: Doug Thompson; Wordsmith; pokerbuddy0; RaceBannon; harpseal; riri; Badabing Badaboom; Princeton; ...
Hey, Doug!

What does he look like? Age, height, eye color, etc? Any distinguishing features? The more details the better...

Put out a Freeper APB!

(Could he have been a spook, BTW?)
84 posted on 07/09/2003 4:47:21 PM PDT by TaxRelief (Welcome to the #1 discussion board dedicated to the sustenance of a free republic.)
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To: William McKinley
On Tuesday, we ran a story headlined "White House admits Bush wrong about Iraqi nukes."
__________________________

That is not entirely the case. Now what was the original title of this article? "White House admits Bush lied about Iraqi nukes"

I think this apology by Doug is a tad weak in the sense that Bush has been slimed in a big way and his character questioned. Now we see the story was picked up and printed elsewhere. Not to mention all those lame-brains over at DU and such that will parrot this article for the next decade after swallowing this article hook, line and s(t)inker.
85 posted on 07/09/2003 4:47:26 PM PDT by Registered (77% of the mentally ill live in poverty, that leaves 23% doing quite well!)
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To: Excuse_My_Bellicosity
Ping
86 posted on 07/09/2003 4:47:58 PM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife (Lurking since 2000.)
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To: unspun
LOL...

Are we sure this is the real Doug Thompson?

87 posted on 07/09/2003 4:49:05 PM PDT by piasa (Attitude adjustments offered here free of charge.)
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To: Dog
I agree. This smells.

The original story was based on a phony source. Now it is exposed by another (unnamed) source?

I was born in the morning, but it wasn't this morning!

88 posted on 07/09/2003 4:49:09 PM PDT by Harmless Teddy Bear (It'll take more than 100 years to evolve a better human.)
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.
89 posted on 07/09/2003 4:49:28 PM PDT by firewalk
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
Wow!! Thanks for the ping!
90 posted on 07/09/2003 4:49:47 PM PDT by Excuse_My_Bellicosity (This space for rent, call 555-9388.)
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To: Registered
You have FR Mail
91 posted on 07/09/2003 4:50:52 PM PDT by MJY1288
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To: Doug Thompson
Well, Doug, you must feel pretty bad having the world see that you made a very public and big mistake.

If it makes you feel any better, you're not alone. In November of 2002, I walked out of a voting booth. I. J. Hudson of the local television station happened to be there, and asked me who I voted for. I proudly told millions of people that I voted for Bill Clinton, and even explained why.

Man, I've never lived that one down. I'm of course a conservative now.
92 posted on 07/09/2003 4:51:55 PM PDT by Our man in washington
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To: deport
Thank you for the ping, my friend. Reading through now.
93 posted on 07/09/2003 4:53:25 PM PDT by DaughterOfAnIwoJimaVet (670: neighbor of the neighbor of The Beast.)
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To: MJY1288
If he has been sourced for the past 20 years, why is it that his name comes up nowhere in every search engine

He did cover it in the article. Whoever this guy is he always wanted to be anonymous, until this time. He also says that he got a second source for early stories and was satisfied that the guy was genuine based on those confirmations. It's a classic intelligence op. A long term one. A well financed one.

Someone has been actively twisting "anonymous" source information for at least 20 years to news media in Washington. They've done it in a slow, patient and very expensive way. Who might do that? Ask who benefits, particularly from this latest attack on Bush. It ain't Republicans (John McCain excepted).

Anyone got a queen of hearts handy?

94 posted on 07/09/2003 4:53:28 PM PDT by Phsstpok
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To: TLBSHOW
Hey, where are you on this one you LoOSer!?
95 posted on 07/09/2003 4:53:48 PM PDT by Registered (77% of the mentally ill live in poverty, that leaves 23% doing quite well!)
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To: Registered
He's banned, by JimRob HIMSELF (reverent bow towards Fresno).
96 posted on 07/09/2003 4:54:31 PM PDT by Poohbah (Crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentations of their women.)
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To: Poohbah
I knew that! lol
97 posted on 07/09/2003 4:55:20 PM PDT by Registered (77% of the mentally ill live in poverty, that leaves 23% doing quite well!)
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To: Our man in washington
you mean 1992.....:)
98 posted on 07/09/2003 4:55:27 PM PDT by rwfromkansas ("There is dust enough on some of your Bibles to write 'damnation' with your fingers." C.H. Spurgeon)
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To: piasa; Doug Thompson
Are we sure this is the real Doug Thompson?

Doug:

Are you, or have you ever been, a member of the Packer Fan Club?

99 posted on 07/09/2003 4:56:06 PM PDT by unspun ("Do everything in love." - No I don't look anything like her but I do like to hear "Unspun w/ AnnaZ")
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To: Registered
He got banned...:-)
100 posted on 07/09/2003 4:56:46 PM PDT by Dog
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