Like conspiracy theories surround 9/11, many will credulously swallow illogical, wildly outrageous rumors because they want to believe.
President Petraeus? Iraqi official recalls the day US general revealed ambition
The US commander in Iraq, General David Petraeus, expressed long-term interest in running for the US presidency when he was stationed in Baghdad, according to a senior Iraqi official who knew him at that time.
Sabah Khadim, then a senior adviser at Iraq's Interior Ministry, says General Petraeus discussed with him his ambition when the general was head of training and recruitment of the Iraqi army in 2004-05.
"I asked him if he was planning to run in 2008 and he said, 'No, that would be too soon'," Mr Khadim, who now lives in London, said.
Aside from the obvious fact that General Petraeus would not abandon his troops for personal political gain... why on earth would he confide in an Iraqi politician, of all people?
Patrick Cockburn of The Independent should employ a more skeptical journalistic pen, and some common sense.