Ari Fleischer: It gets worse

On "Hardball" he doesn't know the name of the Iraq veteran whose story he's using to back the war.

Published August 22, 2007 11:08PM (EDT)

I've already blogged about Ari Fleischer's self-important "cavalry" organization, Freedom's Watch, noting that it seems presumptuous for a stateside guy like Fleischer to use military imagery in describing his cushy civilian advocacy group gig. But it got even worse late on Wednesday, when Fleischer appeared on "Hardball" with guest host Mike Barnicle, a little earlier in the show than I did.

Barnicle showed a disturbing ad featuring an Iraq war veteran who'd lost both legs. The veteran supports the war and says it would be a mistake to end it. Pretty powerful. Barnicle praised the ad and asked Fleischer a softball question: Who's the soldier in the ad? And Fleischer couldn't answer. It was really unbelievable.

There are only four people, so far, featured in the Freedom's Watch campaign. The one in the ad run on "Hardball" is John Kriesel, who lost both legs near Fallujah in December 2006, near the end of his second tour. It's a searing story. Is it really that hard for Fleischer to remember the name of the guy whose tragedy he's using to flack his point of view? Heckuva job, Ari.

By Joan Walsh

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