From USA TODAY, 9/25/07:
White House upset over copy of Bush speech posted to U.N. website
Apparently, a marked-up draft of the president's speech popped up on
the U.N.'s website as President Bush delivered his remarks this
morning before the General Assembly, USA TODAY's David Jackson
The draft included phonetic spellings of some names and countries, and
the cellphone numbers for Bush speechwriters.
Press secretary Dana Perino downplayed the incident, and said phonetic
spellings are used to help interpreters.
Asked if the president has trouble pronouncing some country's names,
Perino deemed it "an offensive question."
"There was an error made," Perino said, noting it was not a final
"It was taken down and there's nothing more to say about it."
Update at 12:43 p.m. ET: Here's the version they replaced it with on
the U.N. website.
Update at 12:46 p.m. ET: Blake Hounshell at Foreign Policy says he has
a copy of the speech that got the White House so worked up this
Here are some of the phonetic guides it included, according to the
• Kyrgyzstan [KEYR-geez-stan]
• Mauritania [moor-EH-tain-ee-a]
• Harare [hah-RAR-ray]
• Mugabe [moo-GAH-bee]
• Sarkozy [sar-KO-zee]
• Caracas [kah-RAH-kus]
Update at 2:33 p.m. ET: Here's an excerpt from the press secretary's
exchange with reporters about the speech snafu.
It was released by the White House.
PERINO: On the speech -- your question about the speech, the drafts
are circulated, and there was an error made in trying to make sure
that interpreters had what they needed. I don't know how the draft of
the speech -- it was not final -- was posted, but it was, and it was
taken down. There's really nothing more to say about it.
REPORTER: And they were phonetic spellings of various countries -- as
well, we understand.
PERINO: That's not unusual. We do that for many speeches.
REPORTER: Does the president have a hard time pronouncing some of
these countries's [sic] name?
PERINO: I think that's a offensive question. I'm going to just
decline to comment on it.