Hitchens explains

Roger Odisio rodisio at igc.org
Sun Feb 7 19:30:38 PST 1999

Thanks to Peter for posting the transcript of Hitchens on Meet the Press. It sure clears up a lot for me. Hitchens' explanation shows that the information he has provided in his affadavit about his conversation with Blumenthal is utterly irrelavent to the Starr and House cases against either Clinton or Blumenthal. One is left to speculate about self-promotion as his motive, beyond his hatred for Clinton, as Chris B. suggests.

Hitchens admits right away that when Blumenthal told him at lunch, both knew Hitchens, as a Clinton hater, would not spread the story. Hitchens knows that was NOT Blumenthal's purpose in telling him. This is consistent with what Blumenthal says: he told only family and friends and he used to think Hitchens was a friend. So Hitchens' affadavit provides NO evidence that Blumenthal spread, or even tried to spread, the story to others, which, of course, is what Starr and the House are after. If Blumenthal did spread the story, Hitchens is no help in proving it. His affadavit about the lunch conversation is irrelevant to nailing either Blumenthal or Clinton.

The only other things that Hitchens offers that remotely might be considered facts (if someone else can show them to be true) is that (1) other reporters knew the story (but he won't name them) and (2) he "heard" that Blumenthal told them (but offers no clue on that either). Well, maybe, but Hitchens' himself is not ready to accept (2). He says gosh, golly, gee whiz, "I still hope Sidney was not an accomplice to it".

So why did Hitchens come forth with his irrelevant info and worthless speculations? Here is his lame account--two reasons. First, he couldn't let Blumenthal get away with claiming he told no one. But of course that is not what Blumenthal says. He says he never told any journalist *for the purpose of spreading the story*, but only told family and friends. Hitchens knows this. Whether or not Blumenthal is telling the truth, Hitchens provides no evidence otherwise. I guess he just forgot that when he slipped his gratuitous remark in at the end of his TV segment--time pressure can be tough.

Second, it occurred to him that since other reporters broke the story, "there MAY have been other White House people putting this around" (emphasis added)--not only Sidney, even if Blumenthal was involved. Don't you see? It was all directed by scumbag Bill, and the world must be told about it. Well, why didn't he just write another column about it mixing fact and speculation as he often does? Point is, his affadavit on the lunch conversation has nothing to do with, and provides no evidence about, this White House plot he alleges.

But why write another yawn in the Nation when, with exquisite timing, you can capture the spotlight with his "accusation". The Blumenthal testimony gave him the opening. Just hope you can get in and back out again before people actually think about what you are saying. Self-promotion.

There are several Chris Hitchens. The one who surfaced this week is the guy who auditioned for a spot as the "lefty" on "Crossfire", and wrote a self-congratulatory article in the Nation when they turned him down.

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