by Professor Revilo P. Oliver

April 1986

The "Skeptical Inquirer" for Winter 1985-86 contains an article by a physicist, Lawrence Cranberg, who comments on the mischievous activity of the Associated Press in promoting such blatant hoaxes as the "Bermuda Triangle" and the "Poltergeist" created by an adolescent female in Columbus, Ohio.

He reminds us "obiter" of one of the journalistic triumphs of the Associated Press. Newspapers subscribing to that press service in 1961 presented their readers with a detailed account of a conference between Dag Hammarskjold, a Swedish twerp who was Secretary General of a circus called "United Nations," and Moses Tshombe, an educated Bantu who served as front man for the Belgians who were trying to preserve a semblance of civilization in the part of the Congo known as Katanga. What made the Associated Press's report so remarkable was the fact that Hammarskjold had been killed on his way to that conference. I understand that as a result of that "contretemps," reporters were admonished not to put propaganda on the wire before they have made certain that the event about which they lie has actually taken place.