The Tower of Babel

From the Iran arms deals: much talk but little coherence

The President's image had barely faded from the TV screens when he admitted that he had been wrong on one important point. Three times during his Wednesday-night news conference Ronald Reagan had denied approving arms shipments by any other country to Iran, even after reporters reminded him that his staff had revealed that the U.S. had condoned at least one such shipment, by Israel in August 1985. Yet almost as soon as the President was off-camera, aides told him he had erred. Within 15 minutes the White House press office rushed out a statement in Reagan's name contending lamely, "There may...

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