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Special Reports Personal Collection:
Norris Carden's (www.nuzman.com) e-mail collection of Drudge's Special Reports (5/31/1997 - 1/17/2001.)



Newspaper Report Starts Commotion

A US Air Force Lt. Colonel has told investigative reporter Chris Ruddy in
Wednesday's PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW: Secretary Ron Brown was found with an
"apparent gunshot wound" to his head.

The Ruddy heartstopper hit the internet harder than just been about anything
in its history late Tuesday night.

In Ruddy's report: According to Lt. Col. Steve Cogswell, a doctor and
deputy Armed Forces medical examiner with the Armed Forces Institute of
Pathology, and once member of the Brown plane crash investigation, officials
who examined Brown's body at Dover Air Force base shortly after the April 3,
1996 Croatia crash discovered "essentially... Brown had a .45 inch inwardly
beveling circular hole in the top of head, which is... the description of a
45-caliber gunshot wound."

The wound was documented, photographed, and X-rayed, in a medical
examination at Dover Air Force base, writes Ruddy.

The TRIBUNE-REVIEW is in possession of numerous crash, medical examination
and other photos that purport to show Brown, the DRUDGE REPORT can confirm.
One photo, to be published in the paper, shows a hole consistent with a .45
caliber gunshot wound, it will be alleged.

Cogswell claims that one photo-X-ray even shows a possible "lead snowstorm"
of metal fragments in Brown's head.

Cogswell tells Ruddy, on the record, for full attribution, that
incriminating X-rays were destroyed shortly after the examination of Brown,
disappearing from the case file.

Ruddy backs up Cogswell's claims with other sources present at Dover, as
well as independent experts who have examined photos of the body and photos
of the X-rays.

"Even if you safely assumed accidental plane crash, when you got something
that appears to be a homicide, that should bring everything to a screeching
halt," Cogswell said, arguing that the finding of the apparent gunshot
should have triggered the Presidential Assassination Statute -- which covers
Cabinet members like Brown -- and immediately prompted an autopsy. Ruddy
reveals in his detail-drenched story that no autopsy was conducted on Brown.

Talk of Ruddy holding a press conference in Washington over the next week
exploring evidence in his possession.

Overnight Internet reaction to Ruddy's story has been swift. One posting on
a newsgroup charged: "I see. So, after 4 years the Vince Foster story has
finally lost steam even with the crazies, and now we've moved on to Ron
Brown? Cute! That's some fancy sidesteppin' folks!"

"Scaife is at it again," wrote another.



"The regretful verdict here: Dead in the water," writes fool Richard
Corliss in a review of TITANIC in this week's TIME [12/8] -- a review that
has now relation to anything this report saw at a screen of the film a few
weeks back, and a review that caused sparks behind the scenes for its
domestic distributor PARAMOUNT.

The way the story is being told in studio circles, Corliss' review in this
week's TIME "violated" an agreement with TIME had with PARAMOUNT not to run
a review of the epic prior to December 15 -- the week of the film's opening.

In the review, Corliss not only trashes TITANIC -- a film so effective it
has brought hard boiled executives to tears at multiple industry screenings,
many predicting Oscar -- but he does it in a slight 6 paragraph
shiv-between-the ribs.

TITANIC producers and PARAMOUNT big shots saw red after reading the first
national print review of the most expensive movie ever made.

Director James Cameron was FAXed the review on Sunday, according to a close
associate, and was somewhere between perplexed and dumbfounded.

"Fine, Jim -- build the damned ship, sink the damned ship," writes Corliss
in his review: "Down, Down to a Watery Grave."

Quick, send in the lifeboats!

All day on Monday, PARAMOUNT pr executives worked the phones to "friends of
TITANIC" -- reportedly Gleiberman at ENTERTAINMENT LASTWEEKLY,
Siskel-and-Ebert, others -- hoping to get a counter-balancing view to
Corliss' knife-job.

The concern at the studio: now that TIME has broken the review-date
agreement, everyone else will rush theirs into print.

The impact of Corliss' review -- the first critical response to the film out
of the New York media machine -- is not to be underestimated.

"There is no love, no love whatsoever, between TIME WARNER and VIACOM's
Sumner Redstone," a well-placed insider explained Tuesday. "Blood has
clearly been drawn, and tempers are running very, very high."

The most expensive film on record sets sail in a few weeks...

Filed by Matt Drudge
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