Emailgate: America Held Hostage, Day 4

The latest developments can be found here.

The whole thing is just weird. The only rational explanations I can think of are that Boylan wrote the email, and now wishes he hadn’t, or has allowed subordinates to write emails for him, one got a little overzealous, and now Boylan is dealing with the shit-storm.

There is, I guess, always the possibility that it was just a spoof to begin with, but you would think the military would want to get to the bottom of that. At the same time, let’s also remember the one thing that the idiots rabidly chasing Beauchamp never did- these guys do have a lot of shit on their plate at the moment.

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44 replies
  1. 1
    ConservativelyLiberal says:

    I think he sent it and now regrets it. The only other possibility is that a subordinate sent it. But I believe that it did come from him/his office. The follow-up he did convinces me of that. Spoof is possible, but I doubt it.

    The identity theft angle is just plain stupid.

  2. 2
    srv says:

    Iraqi Army Physical Training session or Monty Phython sketch?

    You be the judge

    h/t intel-dump.com

  3. 3
    chopper says:

    Iraqi Army Physical Training session or Monty Phython sketch?

    all i knows is that cat in the middle got some moves.

  4. 4
    John Cole says:

    That is priceless, SRV.

  5. 5
    Zifnab says:

    I think he sent it and now regrets it. The only other possibility is that a subordinate sent it. But I believe that it did come from him/his office. The follow-up he did convinces me of that. Spoof is possible, but I doubt it.

    There’s too much shit in that pile for it to be coming from anywhere else. I mean, its not like there was a stark change in tone. He went from condescending and belligerent to condescending and stand-offish.

    If Boylan didn’t write the email, but surrounded himself with people that would, I can’t bring myself to have a higher opinion of the man.

  6. 6

    […] Via the Intel-Dump (we were alerted through the comments of this post), this video of the our soldiers training the Iraqi Army: […]

  7. 7

    He almost certainly wrote the email, and now regrets it. Zifnab’s right– it’s not like it’s a wildly different tone or perspective we’re seeing among the “fake” and acknowledged emails.

    Am I wrong to be a little uncomfortable about all this? Boylan is almost certainly a partisan hack, and an unusually boneheaded one at that. So it’s certainly not a great thing that he’s foisting his hackery upon us from the Army. That said, I really wouldn’t like to see the factosphere adopt the tactics or mentality of the wingnutosphere.

    I’m not saying that’s happening, and obviously Col. Boylan could use a little humiliation, but… does he deserve any bad things beyond that?

    I dunno, the guy’s in Iraq, I feel like he deserves some slack. I wish he would ‘fess up, be embarrassed, and move on.

  8. 8
    Xanthippas says:

    Of course, we can count on the right-wing to get to the bottom of whether or not Boylan is in fact a-as they like to say-“fabulist”.

    Or not.

  9. 9
    BFR says:

    Didn’t he just get stabbed in Korea? How is he still engaging in this issue?

  10. 10
    capelza says:

    Elvis..google “Steve Boylan”…his name comes up in a lot in reference to the political bullshit that comes out of Iraq. If he was some nameless grunt maybe, but if the idiot is the spokesman for all that is America in Iraq and sends bonehead e-mails he then tries to deny…I don’t have a problem with quetioning his stability.

    It’s not like anyone is posting his wedding registry or countertops…

  11. 11
    LTC Boylan, US Army says:

    Gents, I’ll have you know I’m heading offbase tomorrow evening to be fitted for my third–yes, THIRD–wetsuit.

    I’ve been training in Brazilian Jujitsu, so don’t anyone try anything, Korean or otherwise. I know Greenwald’s got that time machine and whatnot.

  12. 12
    sal says:

    What shit does he have on his plate? Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t he just a press secretary? Sure, he’s got to work up a righteous dander at any criticism of him or his boss, and try to backtrack from boneheaded blunders, but it’s not like he’s patrolling the streets of Baghdad or Fallujah. Dude was in Korea, last I heard, allegedly getting knife wounds so minor he didn’t realize he had them.
    I’m not saying that “real” soldiers have to be on the front line, but an office worker is not the same as a grunt on the battlefield. Nor is he one of the folks trying to plan or strategerize tactics. He’s a flack, pure and simple, and his competence in that job can be compared to the competence with which Larry Craig approaches criminal charges.

  13. 13
    Bombadil says:

    Maybe we should send the Iraqi army a better training film.

  14. 14
    Llelldorin says:

    I dunno, the guy’s in Iraq, I feel like he deserves some slack. I wish he would ‘fess up, be embarrassed, and move on.

    If only. Sadly, it’s his inability to even consider the “yeah, that was dumb, sorry” approach that makes him the very model of a modern GOP colonel.

    That’s really what’s gotten us where we are, as a country. It isn’t just that the Bush administration has insane notions of how to run a country. It’s also that when they do something and it turns out badly, their collective reaction is to do it again even harder, to teach reality a lesson.

  15. 15
    Zuzu says:

    capelza Says:

    Elvis..google “Steve Boylan”…his name comes up in a lot in reference to the political bullshit that comes out of Iraq.

    Yep. I posted a few gems from his political dispatches over at the “Finer Points of PR” thread. Full of vast amounts of BS.

  16. 16
    Zuzu says:

    What shit does he have on his plate? Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t he just a press secretary? Sure, he’s got to work up a righteous dander at any criticism of him or his boss, and try to backtrack from boneheaded blunders, but it’s not like he’s patrolling the streets of Baghdad or Fallujah.

    Ahem.

    “This continues to be a hard fight in what I am involved in, the medium of public affairs and communicating to the media and public at large. . .”

    – Col. Steve Boylan, Human Events, August 2007

  17. 17
    kid bitzer says:

    elvis e. is certainly right: the factosphere should prove its greater relatively class in this episode.

    and it is doing so, by not threatening boylan with fragging or fratricide, not telling him to “watch his back”, not threatening him in any way at all, not driving to his family’s house, not staking out his relatives, not persecuting his children, not spreading lies about his wife, not saying she is “fair game”, and on and on and on.

    we don’t do that stuff; it’s beneath us. that’s our attitude towards torture, as well as civil discourse.

    the right-wingers, on the other hand, have never met a slimey tactic they do not embrace.

    don’t worry, elvis e. our side still has a conscience.

  18. 18
    neil says:

    A spoof is not possible. The proof that Greenwald presented is ironclad, and Boykin’s obvious desire to put it all behind him seems to show that he realizes that any serious scrutiny means he’s busted. I’m just amazed that nobody seems to care very much.

  19. 19
    neil says:

    I mean, the only other possibility is that Greenwald drafted the email himself and forged the headers. If that’s true then it is certainly strange that Boykin is taking it in stride. He obviously loathes Greenwald and, along with the warbloggers, would love to put his head in the pike next to Dan Rather’s. But Salon’s probably got logs from their email server which prove the message arrived from a military computer. And the military has logs proving he sent the message, not that that matters.

  20. 20
    Punchy says:

    Boylan is almost certainly a partisan hack, and an unusually boneheaded one at that

    You could almost understand it…almost forgive the man…if he was just some other officer with a short temper and profound inexperience in dealing with the media…BUT THE GUY IS A PROFESSIONAL PR GUY.

    This is like a doctor who doesn’t know the spleen from the gall bladder, or a lawyer unsure of the diff between a “guilty” and “not guilty” plea. This is HIS FUCKING JOB. This is what he’s supposedly trained to do. Experience. Know-how. Class. Tact. Professional.

    I’m worried. Do we have tank gunners who don’t understand geometry? Pilots afraid of heights? Sailors who cant swim? Or is it just the brass?

  21. 21
    wingnuts to iraq says:

    Boylan is just a glorified desk jockey, pushing papers back and forth. He wouldn’t no combat if it shot him in the face. We might as well just change his name to secretary Boylan, because that’s all he is.

  22. 22
    Tim says:

    Totally agree w/ Punchy. This guy is the cream of what crop ?

  23. 23
    Paul Dirks says:

    I think that a subordinate sent it, but more importantly, I’m thinking he routinely farms out email duties. Hence the lack of a change in tone from one correspondence to the next accompanied by the supreme confidence of his denials.

  24. 24
    Jody says:

    I think the Colonel did it. I also think it’s on Greenwald for giving the Colonel the out. All he had to do was talk about basic facts contained within the first email, and get a reply. Bam. Instant verification.

  25. 25
    Jake says:

    Totally agree w/ Punchy. This guy is the cream of what crop ?

    The Bush Crop. Please keep in mind that Dana “Caught in the Headlights” Perino now speaks (or tries) for the Presient of the United States. Col. Boylan might be a crap PR flack in the real world but in BushWorld he’s not just the cream, he’s the cheese.

  26. 26
    Bombadil says:

    I think the Colonel did it.

    In the library.

    With the wrench.

  27. 27
    the Pale Scot says:

    Give the guy a break, “early Sunday morning” is euphuism for “late, late SN”, the man was deep in his cups surfing the net and went to bed thinking he’d jotted off a brilliant rebuttal. Must be a bourbon drinker, my experience is that they all have a nasty streak. Where as scotch drinkers are known for their amiable ways.

    We should send him a bottle of The Balvenie and copy of this

    Hmm…
    On the other hand it’d probably be a waste of good booze.

  28. 28
    Zifnab says:

    Boylan is just a glorified desk jockey, pushing papers back and forth. He wouldn’t no combat if it shot him in the face. We might as well just change his name to secretary Boylan, because that’s all he is.

    In a way, he’s like a Keyboard Commando, except he’s actually in the military. Is this the Republicans’ plan for the future of the 101st? Give them all cushy desk jobs as “soldiers” so they’ll be immune to the yellow elephant epiphet?

    At least if General Jesus H. Petreaus ever gets kicked to the curb, we know a middle-management hack who’s ripe for promotion.

    Dude was in Korea, last I heard, allegedly getting knife wounds so minor he didn’t realize he had them.

    That was back in ’02, when he was just a measily Lt Col. Apparently, he bleed his way into a promotion. I bet he even got a purple heart.

  29. 29
    Julie says:

    What shit does he have on his plate? Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t he just a press secretary? Sure, he’s got to work up a righteous dander at any criticism of him or his boss, and try to backtrack from boneheaded blunders, but it’s not like he’s patrolling the streets of Baghdad or Fallujah.

    PAOs get killed just as dead as other soldiers serving in conflicts, and they usually do come from some other area of the service. You don’t (usually) just graduate from West Point or Annapolis and get handed desk duty. You’ve generally got to do some heavy lifting for a few years first.

    Granted, though, Boylan appears to be a terrible PAO.

  30. 30

    Yeah, you all have the better of the argument.

    He’s a professional PR guy, and a pretty high-level one deeply involved in the branding and packaging of the occupation, not some less-public figure blowing off steam after a rough day out on patrol.

    I better shake this instinctive trust of our government I’ve had all my life. I believed Rumsfeld when he said we had “bulletproof” intel linking al Qaeda and Saddam, and Cheney when he said that ElBaradei was wrong about WMD programs. And now, with no actual evidence or reason offered, I want to give this guy the benefit of the doubt.

  31. 31
    yet another jeff says:

    I’m worried. Do we have tank gunners who don’t understand geometry? Pilots afraid of heights? Sailors who cant swim? Or is it just the brass?

    Holy crap…it’s the Army of Misfit Toys!

  32. 32
    The Pale Scot says:

    In defense of “sailors who can’t swim” historically it was a skill that was avoided by most, it was seen as just prolonging the inevitable if your ship went down. Source: Richard Bolitho novels

  33. 33
    jcricket says:

    I think the Colonel did it….

    with a candlestick in the library?

  34. 34
    jcricket says:

    with a candlestick in the library?

    Which of course I meant as a Clue reference, but judging by recent actions, could also be taken as an “homage” to the dead-gay-Republican-double-wet-suited-evangelical-preacher guy.

  35. 35
    blogenfreude says:

    Maybe Boylan was doing some Althouse-style drunkblogging.

  36. 36

    These are strange, strange times:

    … an “homage” to the dead-gay-Republican-double-wet-suited-evangelical-preacher guy…

    And this is not, I repeat not, parody.

    What really frosts me is that I haven’t gotten a ranting email from “Cheetohs” Boylan. He seems to have sent them to half the factosphere, so what do I have to do?

  37. 37
    gregrocker says:

    One aspect that seems to get overlooked is that apparently Boylan’s partisanship was given a goose by a Cheney flack who (he himself admits) showed up awhile back to reform the media operation over there. This also appears to be when the wingnuttery started.

  38. 38
    Charles Wilson says:

    I think Boylan is lying.

  39. 39
    jpe says:

    This continues to be a hard fight in what I am involved in

    This guy is such a suck-ass writer. Or, this is some bad writing in what I am reading from him the writer.

  40. 40
    Delia says:

    BUT THE GUY IS A PROFESSIONAL PR GUY.

    This is like a doctor who doesn’t know the spleen from the gall bladder, or a lawyer unsure of the diff between a “guilty” and “not guilty” plea. This is HIS FUCKING JOB. This is what he’s supposedly trained to do. Experience. Know-how. Class. Tact. Professional.

    What can we say? Heckuva job, Boylan! Just when I work myself into a really good snit over the decline and fall of my country into dictatorship, I’m forced to contemplate this crew that can’t even do fascism competently, no matter how much they want it. I suppose it’s something.

  41. 41
    eyeball says:

    Could this Boylan possibly so stupid as to think we find his nondenial denial — “it is not my email” — persuasive? There is even a p.r. flak term-of-art for this kind of guv’ment b.s. – “the modified limited hangout.” This Boylan must be quite literally answerable to no one other than Petraeus, so the truth will emerge only when Petraeus gets hot enough — or gets enough heat — to deal with a lying two-faced spokesman. Not much hope of that in the Republican crime syndicate.

  42. 42

    akogun delves into e-mail headers…and so can you!

    Received: from rich.salon.com (rich.salon.com [206.80.4.124]) by mailer.salon.com (8.13.6/8.13.6) with ESMTP id l9SBFgrP024411 for ; Sun, 28 Oct 2007 04:15:43 -0700

    Received: from 02exbhizn02.iraq.centcom.mil (02exbhizn02.iraq.centcom.mil [214.13.200.111]) by rich.salon.com (8.12.11/8.12.11) with ESMTP id l9SBFSff004148 for ; Sun, 28 Oct 2007 04:15:36 -0700

    Here we see many things happening, three of which are of interest to us:

    Salon’s email server (whose name is rich.salon.com) has an IP address of 206.80.4.124

    Salon’s email server received a piece of email for ggreenwald@salon.com FROM a mail server (whose name is 02exbhizn02.iraq.centcom.mil) that has the IP address of 214.12.200.111.

    Salon email server delivered the received email to ggreenwald’s mailbox.

    Let’s keep moving….

    Received: from INTZEXEBHIZN01.iraq.centcom.mil ([10.70.20.11]) by 02exbhizn02.iraq.centcom.mil with Microsoft SMTPSVC(6.0.3790.3959);Sun, 28 Oct 2007 14:15:05 +0300

    Received: from INTZEXEVSIZN02.iraq.centcom.mil ([10.70.20.16]) by INTZEXEBHIZN01.iraq.centcom.mil with Microsoft SMTPSVC(6.0.3790.3959);Sun, 28 Oct 2007 14:15:05 +0300

    Content-class: urn:content-classes:messageMIME-Version: 1.0Content-Type: text/plain; charset=”us-ascii”Subject: The growing link between the U.S. military and right-wing media and blogsX-MimeOLE: Produced By Microsoft Exchange V6.5 Date: Sun, 28 Oct 2007 14:15:05 +0300

    From the lines above, we see some interesting facts. Let’s translate this from bottoms up:

    On Sunday October 28, 2007 at 14:15:05, an email message was created on a computer located in a GMT + 3 Time Zone. Iraq is in this timezone.

    The title of the email message was The growing link between the U.S. military and right-wing media and blogs

    The email was then sent to an INTERNAL email server named INTZEXEVSIZN02.iraq.centcom.mil. This email server has a non-routable IP address (10.70.20.16), so it cannot deliver the message directly on its own. This email server runs Microsoft Exchange Server 2003(aka Microsoft Exchange V6.5).

    This email server then sends this email to another INTERNAL mail server named INTZEXEBHIZN01.iraq.centcom.mil, and which has another non-routable IP of 10.70.20.11. INTZEXEBHIZN01.iraq.centcom.mil runs Microsoft Exchange Server 2000 (aka Microsoft SMTPSVC(6.0.3790.3959)

    NOTE: By the way, transferring mails between internal servers is NORMAL. In large organization spread over multiple geographic location, there are multiple non-internet-connected email servers that take emails directly from internal clients and hand them off to other internal servers. The reason for doing this is multi-faceted and we won’t get into it here because it has no bearing on our discussion.

    Lastly INTZEXEBHIZN01.iraq.centcom.mil handed off the email (ostensibly after running it through various anti-virus and “Acceptable Usage Policies” and other internal protocols) to the real server which has the ability to directly deliver the email to the internet. This server is named 02exbhizn02.iraq.centcom.mil. THIS IS THE SERVER THAT HANDED OFF THE EMAIL TO SALON.COM’s SERVER ABOVE. 02exbhizn02.iraq.centcom.mil runs Microsoft Exchange Server 2000 (aka Microsoft SMTPSVC(6.0.3790.3959)

    =)

  43. 43
    Nancy Irving says:

    Boylan should be relieved immediately, and sent stateside for a psychological evaluation and (given the strangeness of his writing style) a brain-scan. He sounds demented, and may be seriously, physically ill.

  44. 44
    Delia says:

    Boylan should be relieved immediately, and sent stateside for a psychological evaluation and (given the strangeness of his writing style) a brain-scan. He sounds demented, and may be seriously, physically ill

    And this is unusual for the Bush Administration?

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