|Rumsfeld to Kennedy: 'You're All Wet'|
|Netlore Archive: Satire mistaken for news: Donald Rumsfeld allegedly calls Senator Ted Kennedy 'all wet' over accusations that the Bush administration misled the public about Iraq possessing weapons of mass destruction|
Email example contributed by Steve S., 24 Feb 2004:
Subject: Rumsfeld at Kennedy's hearing--good one!!
You will only understand the symbolism of the following if you learned through extraneous history or were old enough to have watched it play out that Ted Kennedy drove off of a bridge in Massachusetts on his way to an island with Mary Joe Kopechne in the late 60's. He did NOT seek help to rescue her when he surfaced. Instead he made his way to a hotel, called friends and the next morning reported the accident. She was, needless to say, both dead and wet. Kennedy faced no type of any censure or reprimand, much less any legal punishment for this negligent act of manslaughter. Kennedy power extends wide in that part of America. You have got to love the chutzpah of Rumsfeld.
February 05, 2004
Rumsfeld: Kennedy 'All Wet' About Bush Lies
(2004-02-05) -- Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld told Sen. Edward M. Kennedy yesterday that he was "all wet" when the Senator alleged that the Bush administration lied about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction to justify going to war.
The verbal clash came during Mr. Rumsfeld's testimony at a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing probing the state of pre-war intelligence.
Sen. Kennedy began his questioning of the Defense Secretary by saying, "Don't you think some members of the Bush administration should be held legally accountable for the lies they told about Iraqi weapons, and the subsequent cover-up?"
"First, with all due respect Senator Kennedy, you're all wet," said Mr. Rumsfeld "The administration has not lied or covered up. However, in general, I do believe that when a man commits a crime he should face the bar of justice. He should not be allowed to serve in positions of power in our government, and be hailed as a leader, when the question of his guilt remains unresolved, if you know what I mean."
Comments: Once again, a satirical text published on the Internet has found its way into broad distribution as a forwarded email and fooled credulous folks into believing it's true. It is not. A quick Google search uncovered the original document on Scott Ott's self-described "daily news satire site," ScrappleFace.
Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and Senator Ted Kennedy did square off during a February 4, 2004 hearing of the Senate Armed Services Committee over the issue of the Bush administration's alleged misrepresentations concerning the existence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. However, as the transcript of the hearing proves, no part of their verbal exchange remotely resembled the above. There was certainly no reference on Rumsfeld's part, direct or indirect, to the 1969 "Chappaquiddick incident" in which a 28-year-old campaign worker named Mary Jo Kopechne drowned after Kennedy drove his car off a bridge on Martha's Vineyard.
Sources and further reading:
Rumsfeld Pushes Back, Says Too Early to Say No Iraq Weapons
Associated Press, 5 February 2004
Transcript: Senate Armed Services Committe Hearing 02/04/04
Via Washington Posterroneous, outdated chain letter
1969: Kennedy Pleads Guilty Over Car Crash
BBC News "On This Day," July 25, 2000
Last updated: 03/25/04