Wire Services: Beyond Bang-Bang Bulletins

In hundreds of U.S. newspapers last week, readers found some version of the Louisville Times headline: U.S. MILITARY FUEL STOLEN IN THAILAND. In recent months, they have seen other accusatory headlines, including NAVY AWARDS JOB TO SUSPECT FIRM, STUDY SHOWS WASTE BY PENTAGON, LYNDA BIRD'S PAL WINS CHILE POST and ARMY'S M-16 PROGRAM is "UNBELIEVABLE." All appeared above exclusive stories produced by what the Associated Press calls its Special Assignment Team, a group of Washington-based reporters with deceptively everyday faces and an unusual mission: to ignore daily deadlines in search of what...

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