Press: When the Camera Blinks

Truth, libel and the cutting-room floor

The documentary that television viewers saw on CBS on Jan. 23, 1982, was glossy and seamless. In The Uncounted Enemy: A Vietnam Deception, CBS's Mike Wallace, his voice resonating with authority, charged that there had been a "conspiracy at the highest levels of American military intelligence" to underreport enemy troop strength in Viet Nam in order to deceive President Lyndon Johnson and the American people into believing that the U.S. was winning the war.

For the past three months, a six-man, six-woman jury in a federal courtroom in Manhattan has been listening to witnesses for General William Westmoreland, former commander of...

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