U.S. admits documents inaccurate
Herald wire services, 4 Jan 2002
WASHINGTON -- The U.S. government is taking liberties with the facts in two high profile documents appealing for help in locating terrorists.
A State Department ad offering millions in rewards contains inaccurate information about hijacking ringleader Mohammed Atta, while a Defense Department leaflet dropped in Afghanistan includes a photo purporting to be Osama bin Laden in Western clothing without a beard.
State Department officials acknowledged the reward-money ad running across the United States gives apparent details about Atta that actually were borrowed from other terrorism suspects, or were inaccurate.
The ad's creators ``took some liberties with some of the content,'' said a State Department official, who asked not to be identified.
Separately, the Defense Department released copies of the leaflets but could not immediately say who was in the picture, whether it was bin Laden or whether it was intended to deceive people into thinking bin Laden had abandoned his religious beliefs and had shaved his beard. The government acknowledged the leaflets are being dropped by U.S. planes.