Below is the text of a letter to the editor that Fran Coombs just sent to The Nation:
To the editor:
George Archibald, a former employee of The Washington Times, is virtually the only named source in Max Blumenthal’s article, Hell of a Times. He also is clearly the overall architect of the piece.
Mr. Archibald resigned under pressure from The Times in August 2005. In a series of e-mails beginning Oct. 25 and in a meeting in my office between Christmas and New Year’s Day, he pleaded to come back but was not rehired for well-documented reasons that he is thoroughly aware of. Since then Mr. Archibald has engaged in an increasingly vicious and fictitious cyber-campaign against The Washington Times and me in particular. Mr. Blumenthal was aware of Mr. Archibald’s employment history at The Times but chose not to mention it in his article.
Every situation involving me described by Mr. Archibald is a fabrication.
Every quotation attributed to me by Mr. Archibald is false and repugnant.
The newsroom described by Mr. Blumenthal in his article with Mr. Archibald’s help is a fiction.
In addition, Mr. Blumenthal’s smear of my wife Marian, who has absolutely nothing to do with the editorial direction of The Washington Times, is beneath contempt. It is fascinating to note that
in his article Mr. Blumenthal chose to delete this portion of my wife’s e-mail to Mr. Archibald: “Your charges are untrue or, at best, wildly distorted out of all proportion — and you KNOW they are.”
But then this article is not about Marian, me or Editor in Chief Wesley Pruden. It is a desperate effort to undercut the fine work of the hundreds of men and women who have made The Washington Times one of the most powerful newspapers in America and the rest of the world.
Please do not regard my failure to mention other portions of the article as an acknowledgement of their veracity. In the interest of brevity, I am merely citing a few key examples to illustrate the overall mendacity of Mr. Blumenthal’s piece.
Francis B. Coombs, Jr.
The Washington Times