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Planted PR Stories Not News to Military
Key Excerpts from Article on Website of Los Angeles Times

Los Angeles Times, December 18, 2005
Posted: November 11th, 2006

U.S. military officials in Iraq were fully aware that a Pentagon contractor regularly paid Iraqi newspapers to publish positive stories about the war, and made it clear that none of the stories should be traced to the United States, according to several current and former employees of Lincoln Group, the Washington-based contractor. In contrast to assertions by military officials in Baghdad and Washington, interviews and Lincoln Group documents show that the information campaign waged over the last year was designed to cloak any connection to the U.S. military. "In clandestine parlance, Lincoln Group was a 'cutout' -- a third party -- that would provide the military with plausible deniability," said a former Lincoln Group employee. A number of workers who carried out Lincoln Group's offensive, including a $20-million two-month contract to influence public opinion in Iraq...describe a campaign that was unnecessarily costly, poorly run and largely ineffective at improving America's image in Iraq. Lincoln Group...had little public relations or communications experience when it won its first psychological operations contract last year. Yet it has become one of the biggest beneficiaries of the information war, and now has 20 Pentagon contracts.

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