A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center

Cheney’s Gitmo Recidivism Claims

Former Vice President Dick Cheney used his May 10 appearance on CBS’ "Face the Nation" to, once again, strongly defend the Bush administration’s handling of alleged terrorists taken into U.S. custody. At one point, to back up his characterization of Guantanamo Bay detainees as ultra-bad guys, Cheney claimed that detainees sent home from Gitmo had already demonstrated significant recidivism: "We released hundreds already of the less threatening types. About 12 percent of them, nonetheless, went back into the fight as terrorists."

More on Mexican Guns

After we posted our April 17 story ("Counting Mexico’s Guns") pointing out the absence of data to back up statements from Obama administration officials (including the president), journalists and others that 90 percent of the guns recovered in Mexico come from the U.S, we still had a few questions about the tracing process. At the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), we sat down with Charles Houser, chief of the agency’s National Tracing Center,

Would Obama Have Soldiers Pay for Own War Injuries?

Q: Did Obama accuse veterans of "selfishness" and whining? Would he have forced them to "pay for their war injuries"?

A: This chain e-mail contains fabricated quotes and misrepresents a budget idea that the White House scrapped. The quotes were intended as satire.

Did Obama Misquote Churchill?

In the New York Times‘ "Caucus" blog today, Kate Phillips offers a well-documented and thorough analysis of a lingering controversy: Did Winston Churchill really say about torture what President Obama says he did?
There has been considerable back-and-forth elsewhere regarding this passage in the president’s "100 days" news conference:

Obama, April 29: I was struck by an article that I was reading the other day, talking about the fact that the British during World War II,

Warned About bin Laden?

Q: Did Oliver North warn Al Gore about Osama bin Laden at Senate hearings in 1987?
A: This ridiculous hoax has been circulating since 2001, even though the secretary of the U.S. Senate and North himself have debunked it.

Rescue of Captain Phillips

Q: Did Obama delay the rescue of Captain Phillips?
A: No. Military officials say that the claims being made in a widely circulated chain e-mail are false.

Here There Be Pirates

We’ve been getting lots — you might even say a vast number — of queries about a new chain e-mail making the rounds. It’s about everyone’s new favorite topic: pirates. And the e-mail simultaneously praises the Navy SEALs who dramatically rescued Capt. Richard Phillips from three Somali pirates April 12 while blaming President Obama for failing to act more quickly. You may have seen the e-mail, even if you’re not one of the 46 people (so far) who have forwarded it to us in the past five days.

Afghanistan History

President Obama seemed to rewrite history in his remarks on Friday in Strasbourg, France, telling an audience at a town hall event:

Obama, April 3: But after the initial NATO engagement in Afghanistan, we got sidetracked by Iraq, and we have not fully recovered that initial insight that we have a mutual interest in ensuring that organizations like al Qaeda cannot operate.

But NATO didn’t have a mission in Afghanistan until Aug. 11, 2003, several months after the U.S.

Obama’s Prime Time Pitch

President Obama sometimes strayed from the facts or made dubious claims during his hour-long evening news conference March 24. He said his budget projections are based on economic assumptions that “are perfectly consistent with what Blue Chip forecasters out there are saying.” Not true. The average projection by leading …

Tiny Iran

Feb. 26 marked the beginning of the Conservative Political Action Committee (or CPAC) annual convention. Conference speakers include leading figures from the Republican Party as well as conservative columnists, pundits and activists. Among yesterday’s speakers was John Bolton, U.N. ambassador under President George W. Bush and now a senior fellow with the conservative American Enterprise Institute. During his speech, Bolton repeated a bit of old bunk from the 2008 campaign, falsely claiming that Obama called Iran “a tiny threat.”