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NY Times duped by fake Paris mayor letter

Latest update : 2008-12-25

In a statement published on its Web site, The New York Times admitted that it had published a fake letter, purportedly from Paris Mayor Bertrand Delanoe, that attacked Caroline Kennedy's US Senate bid as "appalling".

AFP - The New York Times admitted Monday it was duped into publishing a fake letter claiming to come from Paris mayor Bertrand Delanoe that criticized Caroline Kennedy's senate bid as "appalling" and "not very democratic."
  
"What title has Ms. Kennedy to pretend to Hillary Clinton’s seat?" read the letter, printed in Monday's editions of the leading US metropolitan daily.

Extract of the fake letter by Paris Mayor Bertrand Delanoe published by The NYT.

  
"We French can only see a dynastic move of the vanishing Kennedy clan in the very country of the Bill of Rights. It is both surprising and appalling ... Can we speak of American decline?" read the letter.
  
Later Monday, the newspaper published an editor's note on its website stating "this letter was a fake. It should not have been published."
  
Delanoe's press office in Paris confirmed that the text was a hoax.
  
The letter was received via email, and the Times said it had "violated both our standards and our procedures in publishing signed letters from our readers" because it had not verified its authenticity. The paper said it had already sent an apology to Delanoe's office.
  
The incident recalled a prank call to former Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin received in early November from a French-Canadian comedian posing as French president Nicholas Sarkozy.
  
Palin enthusiastically took the fake Sarkozy call and stayed on the phone for several minutes, despite outrageous comments from the comedian, before realizing it was a hoax.
  
Caroline Kennedy, the sole surviving child of John F. Kennedy, indicated last week she was seeking to enter the US Senate as a replacement to Hillary Clinton.
  
With Clinton leaving her senate seat to become secretary of state in Barack Obama's administration next month pending Senate confirmation, New York state governor David Paterson is required to name a temporary replacement, who could then run as the incumbent in a 2010 election.

 

 

Date created : 2008-12-23

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