Former presenter and current ABC radio regular Terry Lane has admitted an article he wrote for The Sunday Age was infact based on a hoax video that had been circulating on the internet for months. Lane has offered his resignation to the newspaper’s editor.

Lane, who has been writing in the newspaper since it started in 1989 said in the article the Iraq war had killed “probably more than 100,000 innocents” and the Government should hold an inquiry into “the video evidence of US Army Ranger Jesse Macbeth”.

In the “video evidence”, which Lane instructs readers to find on Google Video, Macbeth says his orders were “to strike fear into the hearts of the Iraqis … the Geneva Convention doesn’t mean crap”.

The problem is Macbeth’s testimony is a hoax - and one that was debunked months ago by internet bloggers.

Lane offered to resign, and he told the Crikey newsletter that he had been guilty of the “unforgivable sin … of failing to check thefacts”.

“It came about like this. My attention was drawn to what looked like a professionally packaged documentary video in which US Ranger (I now know that that is bogus) Jesse Macbeth recounts his experiences as a soldier in Iraq, where he claimed to have served for 16 months,” Lane said.

“I was completely taken in by his fake sincerity. That, I suppose, could be excusable for any person with no responsibility to check bona fides, but in my case I fell for it because I wanted to believe it. That is inexcusable.”  (Sources Tattler, Crikey, The Australian.)