The line I am getting from Thiessen's defenders is that, Well, he criticized her, too, in his book. Let's see: One person is a reporter who worked alongside me the Wall Street Journal. The other was a flack for Jesse Helms and Rumsfeld. Who am I more likely to trust? It puzzles me that my old newspaper, The Washington Post, would hire Thiessen to write for its op-ed page. How many former Bush speechwriters does one newspaper need?
One nugget Tom dug out of Mayer's must-read demolition job:
Thiessen's account of the foiled Heathrow plot, for example, is "completely and utterly wrong," according to Peter Clarke, who was the head of Scotland Yard's anti-terrorism branch in 2006.
"The deduction that what was being planned was an attack against airliners was entirely based upon intelligence gathered in the U.K.," Clarke said, adding that Thiessen's "version of events is simply not recognized by those who were intimately involved in the airlines investigation in 2006." Nor did Scotland Yard need to be told about the perils of terrorists using liquid explosives. The bombers who attacked London's public-transportation system in 2005, Clarke pointed out, "used exactly the same materials."
Btw, congrats, Tom, on winning the National Magazine Award for Best Blog. We still love you at the Dish.