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BREAKING NEWS ~ CBS fires four for disputed Bush National Guard story

[JURIST] CBS News is reporting that CBS has ousted four people - three executives and a producer - for their roles in preparing and reporting a story on President Bush's National Guard service which was based on false documents. The executives have been asked to resign; the producer has been terminated. The dismissals follow the report of an independent panel made up of former US Attorney General Dick Thornburgh and Louis D. Boccardi, retired President and Chief Executive Officer of the Associated Press. The panel was named by CBS to investigate the its news division's handling of the story, which aired September 8 on the CBS program 60 Minutes Wednesday in a segment anchored by Dan Rather. Its report concluded that "The combination of a new 60 Minutes Wednesday management team, great deference given to a highly respected producer and the network’s news anchor, competitive pressures, and a zealous belief in the truth of the segment seem to have led many to disregard some fundamental journalistic principles." Read the full text of the panel report [PDF]. CBS has issued this press release [PDF] officially responding to the report and detailing its response. CBS News has more.

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