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XXXXX DRUDGE REPORT XXXXX TUE SEP 14, 2004 17:48:35 ET XXXXX
TEXAS GUARD SECRETARY SURFACES: SAYS CBS DOCS 'FORGERIES', BUT STANDS BY ACCUSATIONS AGAINST BUSH
The DRUDGE REPORT has found Lt. Col. Jerry Killian's former secretary who claims that the Texas Air National Guard documents offered by CBS in its 60 MINUTES II report filed by Dan Rather last week are indeed 'forgeries'.
"I did not type these particular memos. I typed memos like these," Knox told the DRUDGE REPORT from her home in Houston.
"I typed memos that had this information in them, but I did not type these memos. There are terms in these memos that are not Guard terms but that are Army terms. They use the word 'Billets'. I think they were using that to refer to the slot. That would be a non-flying slot the way we would use it. And the style... they are sloppy looking."
But Marion Carr Knox stands by the accusations contained in the allegedly fraudulent documents that Bush skirted a medical and flight exam without suffering institutional repercussions.
"The information in these memos is correct -- like Killian's dealing with the problems."
"It was General Staudt, not then Lt. Colonel Hodges [who succeeded Staudt], that was putting on the pressure to whitewash Bush. For instance he didnt take his flight examination or his physical. And the pilots had to take them by their birthdays. Once in a while there would be a reason why a pilot would miss these things because some of them were commercial pilots. But they had to make arrangements to take their exams."
Knox speculated as to how she thought the forgeries were created saying, "My guess is that someone in the outfit got hold of the real ones and discussed it with a former Army person."
Knox worked for the Guard from 1957 until she retired in 1979, and she was Lt. Col. Killian's secretary during the time President Bush served in Texas.
Contacted by the DRUDGE REPORT, Lt. Col. Killian's son Gary, who also served in the unit during the same period, responded: "I know Marion Carr. I remember her as a sweet lady who reminded me then of a dear aunt."
"But if Staudt had put pressure on my dad, there would have been a blow-up -- instantly. It was one of the reasons they got along so well. They had a mutual respect for one another."
"As has been pointed out by so many others, then Col Staudt had been out of the unit for 18 months. And I stand by my previous comments regarding my dad's admiration for Lt. Bush and his regard for him as an officer and pilot -- which was exemplary."
Knox told the DRUDGE REPORT that she did not vote for Bush in 2000 because he is 'unqualified' for the job, and does not intend to vote for him in 2004, either.
"Bush was not the only person of privilege who had a spot in the Guard. Senator [Lloyd] Bensen's nephew was in headquarters. There was a big jewelery store, Gordons. Their son was in the Guard. The owner of Batelstein's, a posh department store in the area, his son was in. The other kids couldn't get in like that. Hugh Roy Cullen's grandson was also in. He was a big oil man."
Knox, however, did have some kind words about then Lt. Bush.
"[Bush] was always pleasant and gentlemanly to me," she said. "I never noticed him not being respectful. I thought he was a nice young man and that he must have had very nice parents to produce a son as nice as he seemed to be."
Knox has been following the story since last week when the 60 MINUTES II broadcast aired, and on Friday she contacted the HOUSTON CHRONICLE wanting to tell her side of the story. Since then the DALLAS MORNING NEWS has also contacted her.
"What really hecked me off was when it was somebody on TV, associated with the White House, who said that all of this information was lies. And I got excited at the time because I knew that I had typed documents with this information because a person like Bush stood out from the others -- because of his association with his father."
Asked about reports that Lt. Col. Killian's wife and son saying he didn't type, Knox stated, "He didn't need to. He had me."
Knox explains that the August 18, 1973 date typed on one of the "forged" documents proves that they were faked. Group Commander Staudt, who allegedly had been putting pressure on Killian, retired in 1972.
To the best of her recollection, Knox explains that Staudt must have put pressure on Killian in 1972 -- the year he retired.
"If my father was going to type a CYA memo, which he didn't," Gary Killian responded. "He would have typed it himself because he wouldn't have wanted anyone to see it. But it's academic because Colonel Staudt had been out of the unit for 18 months -- as is well documented."
Contacted at his office in Bartlett, Texas, former Major Dean Roome, who served with Lt. Bush, responded to the latest information.
"If the memos are fraudulent, then why were they generated? Roome asked.
"Marion Carr Knox is validating what the rest of us are saying. She says once in a while a pilot would miss a physical because some of them were commercial pilots. I was also a commercial pilot with Continental Airlines. The clinic did not just open up for us to take a personal physical. The Flight Surgeons had to be there along with a full complement of medical personnel. We took our physical during the Uniformed Training Assembly (UTA) just like everyone else."
"The 'former Army person' she references is the person we believe may have created the fraudulent documents in an effort to injure President Bush. He has his own agenda and I doubt that he has any 'real ones' [documents].
Ms. Knox states emphatically that she is not acting for political motives, and has no formal relationship with any political party. She says she just wants to set the record straight.
Filed By Matt Drudge
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