"I felt that it was essential that you received this information as soon as we detected it in order to preclude any unknowing statements by our country's leaders which might cause public embarrassment if the circumstances of Cpl. Tillman's death become public," McChrystal wrote.
The April 29, 2004, memo, was addressed to Gen. John Abizaid, head of Central Command, and was intended as a warning to Bush and acting Army Secretary Les Brownlee.
It is not clear whether Bush or Brownlee received the warning, but it raises new questions on how high up the chain of command the misinformation campaign extended. In speeches following the memo, Bush avoided any reference to the circumstances of Tillman's death.
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