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- Iraqi Information Minister Vows Big Changes at New York Times

IRAQI INFORMATION MINISTER VOWS BIG CHANGES AT NEW YORK TIMES

Paper to Switch to All-Whopper Format

In a move seemingly designed to rock the journalism world, former Iraqi Information Minister Mohammed Saeed al-Sahaf was named executive editor of The New York Times today after the surprisingly brief seven-hour tenure of interim editor Joseph Lelyveld.

Mr. al-Sahaf, who had been serving as the spokesman for media giant AOL-Time Warner, said he welcomed the challenges ahead in his new post at the Times.

"Much as I loved working at AOL-Time Warner, I was bored," Mr. al-Sahaf said. "That company is such a well-oiled machine, there just wasn't much for me to do."

But Mr. al-Sahaf showed that he was ready to hit the ground running as executive editor of the Times, naming as his deputy editor former Baghdad Times editor Maysaloun al-Hillawi, also known as "Dr. Typo."

The former Iraqi Information Minister added that the paper would now switch to what he called an "all-whopper format," dropping any remaining pretense of reporting the facts.

Dr. David Beiler of the University of Minnesota School of Journalism called the change in formats "shrewd."

"If you have to make a choice between getting all of the facts right or none of the facts right, getting none of them right is definitely easier," Dr. Beiler said, adding that the Times had recently spelled his last name "Bieler."

In this morning's edition of the Times, the first under Mr. al-Sahaf's stewardship, the front page headlines read, "U.S. FINDS WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION," "NO CORK IN SOSA'S BAT AFTER ALL," and "MARTHA STEWART FULLY EXONERATED."

Submitted by Ralphie
 






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