After I wrote yesterday about questions surrounding a photo making the rounds on right-wing blogs, the originator of the picture has written to say it's for real.
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North Dakota radio host Scott Hannen, Michelle Malkin, the Powerline blog and other online conservatives featured the picture, which alleged to portray Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) eating breakfast alone at the U.S. embassy in Baghdad.
Shortly after I posted on the topic, Reader BL wrote me with a suggestion.
"The Kerry photo originated from the following blog by Ben Of Mesopotamia," BL wrote. "Maybe someone should drop him a line about the photo." "Ben" is CPT Benjamin G. Runkle, former speechwriter to president Bush and staff assistant to Defense undersecretary Douglas Feith, according to the 2004 Plum Book of presidential appointments.
So I dropped Runkle a line, and last night he wrote back. The photo is authentic, he said. "Although I did not personally take the pictures, I saw the person who did immediately after they took them and asked for a copy."