CBS News has fired four employees, including three executives, for their roles in the broadcast of a disputed story about President Bush’s service in the National Guard, the network reported Monday.
The action followed an independent investigation, by former Attorney General Dick Thornburgh and former Associated Press President Louis Boccardi, that found network failed to follow basic journalistic principles in preparing the piece.
The investigators reported that a “myopic zeal” to break the story about Bush’s National Guard service was a key factor in explaining why CBS News had produced a story that was neither fair nor accurate and did not meet the organization’s internal standards.
The 224-page report not directly fault the correspondent on the story, CBS News anchor Dan Rather, who is stepping down in March.
The story, which aired on Sept. 8, relied on four documents allegedly written by one of Bush’s Texas Air National Guard commanders in the early 1970s. Questions about the authenticity of the documents were raised almost immediately.
You can dowload the full CBS report there as well.