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October 13, 2005

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JayDee

and he'd actually been recommended for it by his wife?

You've just answered your own question there, Cecil.

This is an entirely irrelevant fact, unless you're trying to imply (laughably) that the Bush admis is opposed to cronyism.

If the implication of her recommending him is - as the wingiest of the wingers believe - that she was a CIA activist trying to undercut the president's case for war, then that was a battle to be fought seperately. In a lawful, honorable fashion, once they had proof enough to ... request a federal investigation of such a serious charge.

No, this was the same Rove who had to let the world know that John McCain's wife had a drug problem. They're slimy, sneaky little bastards. They wanted to add a little dollop of insult onto Wilson by making him seem like the lackey of his wife. And they needed so bad to do this that they treated the classification of national security information as a scofflaw that was they were too important to respect.

But keep on going. I love watching right wing folk defend lawbreaking.

kim

You haven't read Stephen Hayes yet, have you?
==============================================

Sue

Does it matter that Wilson was claiming to have seen a forged document 8 months before the US government had possession of it? Does his 'misspoke' to the SSIC come into play?

MSM keeps reporting that what Wilson found in Africa refuted the 16 words in the Presiden't SOTU address. It didn't. Only in the mind of Wilson, who BTW, did not write a report, if you can believe him. What he found in Niger changed no one's mind. It bolstered those in the CIA who believed the account. It bolstered those who didn't. The mission was a wash.

kim

It got the attention it deserved, which was little. It only had importance in Joe's mind until we failed to find as much WMD as feared; then he and the anti-war crowd seized on a misinterpretation of his work to inflate his accomplishments. Accomplishments which were confidential. The lying about the forgeries may just tantalize those of us who basically think this arose from Joe's fevered imagination and only gained substance as a weapon of mass political destruction, which the Democrats are going to find is most destructivae to them.

I mean this was about taking out Saddam.

God bless purple-fingered majesty.
=================================

Seven Machos

JayZeeDee: Rove and Libby aren't going to get indicted. Niether one broke any laws.

No matter how angry you get, no matter how much of a tantrum you throw, no matter how much inneuendo or how amny insults you hurl, nothing will change.

I'm worried, big guy. All these tantrums could hurt your karma.

Cecil Turner

This is an entirely irrelevant fact, unless you're trying to imply (laughably) that the Bush admis is opposed to cronyism.

Umm, no. The impression that the VP was directly involved in sending Wilson is critical to his main point (that they ignored his debunking), and adds credibility to his assertion that CIA sent "a specific answer from the agency to the office of the vice president" on his trip. In fact, neither happened. Tenet, in his statement after Wilson's column came out, felt obligated to point out that:

CIA's counter-proliferation experts, on their own initiative, asked an individual with ties to the region to make a visit to see what he could learn.
Speculation followed on why the Administration would select a Dem partisan for the trip, and the answer, of course, was his wife.

But keep on going. I love watching right wing folk defend lawbreaking.

You're assuming lawbreaking. And evidence for that in the "outing" portion of this mess is not very convincing. (Though there appears to be considerably more to the scurrying about afterward.)

JayDee

More irrelevance, Sue.

Did he "claim" to have seen classified docs 8 months earlier or was he bloviating, which seems to be his forte? Only the ultra wingy seem to find this compelling. I tend to think if Fitzgerald thought so, he'd be on it. And , all wishful thinking to the contrary, it doesn't seem he is.

I love how no one addresses what is the likeliest crime. That nasty perjury/obstruction thing that you all found soooooooo freaking outrageous when it had to do with Clinton's afternoon delights. Not so outrageous apparently, when it touches on national security, classified information and a false cassus belli that has already demolished almost 2000 American lives.

Cecil Turner

That nasty perjury/obstruction thing that you all found soooooooo freaking outrageous when it had to do with Clinton's afternoon delights.

The obstruction thing with Clinton was an issue because of the chief law enforcement officer of the US distributing false talking points to all the witnesses to make sure the perjury matched. (Luckily for him, they couldn't prove it.) This one is considerably less important, even if it were proved (which, considering the spotty memories of the prosecution witnesses, appears doubtful).

Wolfman

I love how no one addresses what is the likeliest crime. That nasty perjury/obstruction thing . . . .

If the SP indicts, I hope it's based on a substantive crime and not just different recollections about things that were said in conversations from several years ago.

Judith Miller, according to her own account, can't remember who said what and she has notes. She even speculates about alternative explanations for items she wrote down.

kim

Joe's forte is bloviating? JD, you are making progress. I recommend the Daily Howler's take on Joe for your further education.
==================================================

JayDee

Considerably less important to coordinate lies about issues pertaining to national security than to coordinate lies about issues pertaining to extramarital sex? Thanks,Cecil, for proving once again that the 'core values' of the conservatives are entirely determined by partisan convenience.

Sue

Jay Dee,

Your statements could be turned around on you. What wasn't a big thing, perjury, to you during the Clinton administration, suddenly becomes your saviour. If all they get them on is obstruction and perjury, not the crime of revealing a NOC, then you are no better than what you are spouting about 'wingers'.

This is a partisan political ploy, by Wilson, that ran amuck. And Rove, Libby, possibly others, screwed up. They probably didn't know she was NOC (if she was), started covering their tracks, denying, etc., thinking a reporter would not divulge his/her source, not expecting a GJ investigation, and you know, the rest is history. Once you lie to your boss, you pretty much have to continue the lie, especially if you don't think it will come to light. End of the day, they screwed up. Fighting a lie (Wilson) with a lie (to Bush, McClellan, etc.). I still will be amazed if they are charged with outing a NOC. However, I will admit the CIA answered the questions in the affirmative that she was. We'll see. We could all be right and we could all be wrong. One thing about it, this is not one of those times where we won't know which one of us is right and which one is wrong. :)

millco88

JayDee,

Why is it irrelevant HOW he got the gig, because YOU think so? Let's be real about this. The only reason Wilson's op-ed was published is because it left the impression that the Administration, specifically Cheney, disregarded intelligence from its own fact-finder.

If he wrote that he was one of a few people sent by the CIA to investigate the Niger claim, that he filed a report, that he never briefed Cheney, then that op-ed never sees the light of day. You know it; I know it; Wilson knows it.

That's why Wilson overstated the importance of his mission to Cheney. That's probably human nature, or at least Joe Wilson's nature. The fact that it's not really the truth seems to be pretty relevant.

kim

Wolfman, I think Judy's been to Law School for the last couple of weeks. Someone advocated it for her.
=====================================

Jerkweed

"which, considering the spotty memories of the prosecution witnesses"

The prosecution witnesses?

What did Powell not remember?

Jim E.

Seven Machos wrote: "Rove and Libby aren't going to get indicted."

HOW DO YOU KNOW? YOU HAVE DEMONSTRATED NOTHING. Those aren't facts. You can't demonstrate them. Yet they are central to what you are trying to say. You and your righty cohorts are not facing objective fact. It is far more likely that Rove is in trouble than Wilson. I have an idea. How about you give Fitzgerald a call! You can testify yourself, all about your theories of the case.

No matter how angry you get, no matter how much of a tantrum you throw, no matter how much inneuendo or how amny insults you hurl, nothing will change.

Wolfman

The only reason Wilson's op-ed was published is because it left the impression that the Administration, specifically Cheney, disregarded intelligence from its own fact-finder.

It's worth remembering that Wilson, anonymously through Kristof and Pincus (among other outlets), charged that the Administration absolutely had been informed - by him - that the Niger claims were bogus before the President said otherwise in his SOTU.

He essentially claimed that the President was knowlingly lying to the American people in his SOTU.

Sue

From Wilson's book, he called CNN to get Novak to not publish his wife's name. If she was NOC, why didn't the CIA call Novak and tell him not to publish her name? Or someone that could actually stop Novak from publishing her name? CNN did not have control over what Novak wrote. Sounds strange to me.

Sue

Everyone is lying in this. Too many different stories, unless the 'leaks' that aren't being 'leaked' with Fitzgerald's tight GJ are false. The game won't end with indictments. I hope they all realize this.

Wolfman

Or someone that could actually stop Novak from publishing her name?

I don't think we want to stop the press from publishing even classified information. This story exemplifies a public relations war that takes behind the scenes with "sources" - often anonymously - making their case to the press which assesses, filters and tells the story to us.

Wilson appears to have started this one by using Kristof to tell a story distorted in quite significant ways.

kim

Sue, I truly believe this is a lot like the blind men and the elephant. Surely we are all seeing this through our biases.

My question is does Fitz have vision?
=====================================

millco88

Sue,

The part about the CIA not warning off Novak really leaves a lot of unanswered questions for me. This isn't Novak's first ride on the merry-go-round. He knows how the game works. He calls the CIA for official confirmation, and he doesn't get the sort of clue he's looking for that means, "Don't print this." Whatever anyone may think of Novak, he certainly knows how the Beltway game of sourcing works.

How does the CIA go from that position to asking for an investigation??

Newby

Some of these pro White House/anti-Wilson arguments are so ridiculous it's like trying to argue Clinton had a right to lie about Monica because she gave poor quality blowjobs.

Sue

I am saying that if Wilson knew his wife was NOC, which he says she was, and he knew Novak was going to publish her name, which he says he knew, why did he ask the one person who could do nothing to stop Novak? Why did he pass on to someone at CNN that his wife was NOC? Just strange, IMO.

Of course, Wilson could bloviating again. :)

JayDee

Sue, when have I ever defended Clinton or called him my hero, and how do you know what I feel/felt about his behavior? I am not the one who is now saying perjury is no big deal. That's you all.

Every argument that claims it was relevant to claim Plame recommended Wilson presumes that the VP's office didn't request the trip, i.e. that Wilson is lying and not Cheney. Your partisan preferences can let you believe whatever you want, but neither claim can be proved irrefutably.

Jim E., don't bother with the Macho Man. He keeps projecting his own problems onto those he disagrees with. You'll just go round and round if you try and address anything he spews.

I do agree with Wolfman that Wiilson was claiming Bush knowingly lied in the SOTU. I also think Wilson was right. The ultimate result of this investigation is to add to the body of knowledge that will eventually fill history books about one of the most egregiously anti-democratic acts any American administration ever perpetrated on its own citizens.

kim

Dairy-O-Piano, I think that's one of the reasons Novak appears to be in little trouble and why I've suspected that this about more than the leak of a name.

Back to Fitz: The overarching duty of a prosecutor is to see that justice is done. That duty often gives clarity of vision and firmness of purpose. Probity combined with those two attributes form a powerful troika, a truth engine, for justice.

There is NO evidence that Fitz is not dutiful, honest, and firm.
==========================================

Sue

Which brings us back to Novak. We don't know what he told the GJ. It could all hinge on that.

I still say if there was no crime in outing Plame, there should be an end to SPs. If Starr is going to be vilified, and he has been, for not finding anything in his original investigation but finding other crimes, then Fitzgerald should be also. Unless of course you are partisan. In which case, we are back to square one.

If lying about a blow job is no big deal, then lying about a non-issue is no big deal. The non-issue being Plame was not NOC. If that is the case at the end of the day.

JayDee

Agreed, kim. Whatever the results of this investigation, I think everyone is going to have to live with them. This guy is pure.

Wolfman

I do agree with Wolfman that Wiilson was claiming Bush knowingly lied in the SOTU. I also think Wilson was right.

This is the key charge made by Wilson and how one answers it determines whether you support or hate Bush.

Today everyone knows that WMD have not been found in Iraq despite diligent searching. Was Bush told before his SOTU and, more importantly, before invading Iraq that there weren't any WMD?

As best I can determine, Wilson isn't credible in his claim about the timing of Bush's knowledge. Instead, Bush appears to have been misinformed just like the rest of us. That, of course, is troubling for a whole lot of reasons.

Tollhouse

Lot's of flame here today huh?

Jon H

"How does the CIA go from that position to asking for an investigation??"

The CIA's confirmation or non-confirmation is irrelevant.

What matters is, was the White House passing classified information about a covert operative to journalists who were not authorized to have that information?

The answer to that, is yes.

If none of the journalists had published, it would still be a crime. What the CIA said is completely irrelevant. The law was broken before Novak called the CIA.

kim

I am, by nature, excessively skeptical. My faith in Fitz surprises me. Perhaps it is the indirect evidence of his behaviour through this that I am responding to. There are pretty clearly two opposing and nearly mutually exclusive explanations about this whole affair. Somehow, I have faith that this man will be able to distinguish rectitude from righteousness.

The fact that there are three players, with a wild man, Wilson, in the middle, complicates matters. Obviously, the NYT has just backtracked, certainly more than Judy has, and Libby, though involved, isn't clearly criminal, yet.

Will Fitz next start deposing more, or is it time to call the round?
=========================================

millco88

JayDee,

The argument isn't that Cheney's request triggered the CIA sending Wilson. It's that Wilson was Cheney's guy in Niger. That's the impression Wilson's op-ed left. Bringing up exactly how Wilson got the gig demonstrates Wilson's claims in the op-ed were wrong.

Let's put it another way. It only matters HOW Wilson got the gig when he made the claim that his findings were disregarded by the Administration. If he were only one of many people sent by the CIA, then Wilson has no idea what the CIA actually told Cheney.

It's only by making the claim that he was Cheney's eyes and ears on the ground can the case be made for ignoring intelligence because it didn't fit with the war plan. The first scenario doesn't get you printed on the NYTimes' op-ed page.

Jon H

Sue writes: "If she was NOC, why didn't the CIA call Novak and tell him not to publish her name?"

Because the law was broken, the information was out, whether or not he published?

"Or someone that could actually stop Novak from publishing her name? CNN did not have control over what Novak wrote. Sounds strange to me."

Why would CNN, a TV network, have any control over Novak's NEWSPAPER column?

millco88

Jon H,

You don't think it's relevant that the CIA goes from not actively protecting the identity of an agent to then asking for an investigation into the outing of said agent? Are you serious?

It's akin to asking to borrow someone's car for a week. He says no problem. Two days later, the police pick you up for stealing it. That seems to have been the CIA's position.

Jon H

Sue writes: "You keep forgetting that Wilson leaked classified information when he was the source for the Kristoff and Pincus articles. How does he catch a pass in the leaking of classified information?"

We don't have a blanket National Secrets law that criminalizes the release of any classified information.

Cecil Turner

Considerably less important to coordinate lies about issues pertaining to national security than to coordinate lies about issues pertaining to extramarital sex?

You might have a point if they were lying about national security. But that seems to be Wilson's province, and they were mostly setting the story straight. (After all, his wife did propose him for the mission, and his results didn't add much to the African uranium story.) And I don't think we really want the President fixing court cases . . . even the silly ones.

I do agree with Wolfman that Wiilson was claiming Bush knowingly lied in the SOTU. I also think Wilson was right.

Certainly not on the subject of African uranium, which the intel reports supported right up to the point they submitted the forgeries to the IAEA for confirmation. Unless you're claiming Bush had independent knowledge of the matter and should have disregarded the expert opinion?

kim

JayDee, we agree on Fitz's incorruptibility. His purity is that of a priest, which, incidentally, Miers has also.

I am prepared for Fitz missing out on Wilson. It's hard to indict insanity.
==========================================

kim

The Dems are listening to demons. The Demonocratic Party.
===================================================

Sue

JonH,

I don't know. Ask Wilson. It is his story, not mine. And I asked the same question. Why CNN?

If the CIA was concerned about a NOC being outed, they would have tried to stop Novak. As you said, if the crime had already been committed, then stopping the outing would not have changed the status of the crime.

Just for the record, if the indictments do not include outing a NOC, will you still feel the same?

Jon H

"It's akin to asking to borrow someone's car for a week. He says no problem. Two days later, the police pick you up for stealing it. That seems to have been the CIA's position."

Except that Novak wasn't arrested, and isn't under threat of same, so your analogy is faulty.

I dunno, maybe the CIA thought they said enough, and to belabor the point would do more damage, or incite Novak into digging deeper.

Maybe Novak was just overeager to get back into the good graces of the administration (he'd been critical of the war), and used poor judgement.

j.west

Having only dealt with lawyers from the wrong side of a checkbook, I don’t know what training they receive in the use of the written word. I would assume they are fairly careful with their choice of phrases and that this caution increases with the importance of the recipient of their work product.

With that said and reiterating I am not well versed in legal procedure, as a matter of common sense I would think that when a special prosecutor enters a grand jury investigation, the premise of his case would encompass the crime, any perjury related to the crime and/or any conspiracy leading up to the crime.

Knowing how my own overpriced legal talent agonize over every comma, phrase and intonation (in an effort to break their billing records), I find it difficult to believe that in the Miller/Cooper appeal the phrase “unanticipated shift in the investigation” meant that although the original crime remains the focus is now on perjury or conspiracy related to that same crime.

Would something clearly anticipated be classified by a meticulous lawyer such as Fitzgerald as “unanticipated” to an appeals court?

Jon H

"I don't know. Ask Wilson. It is his story, not mine. And I asked the same question. Why CNN?"

It depends on the time of day, but Novak was on a daily TV show on CNN, so that would be the obvious place to call if you wanted to speak with him, about any subject.

"If the CIA was concerned about a NOC being outed, they would have tried to stop Novak. As you said, if the crime had already been committed, then stopping the outing would not have changed the status of the crime."

I'm not convinced that the CIA didn't try to stop Novak. He may have just ignored them, or rationalized a reason to dismiss their warnings.

It's tricky for the CIA rep. Whatever they say about it could end up in the press. They're in something of a no-win situation when it gets to that point. If the CIA strongly warned Novak not to report on her, Novak could report *that*, which would be just as bad.

"Just for the record, if the indictments do not include outing a NOC, will you still feel the same?"

Yep. It's possible they'll slip through a technical loophole, but at the end of the day, public knowledge is still net up one CIA agent's identity which used to be secret.

The exculpatory evidence would have to be very strong. I'd have no problem if they get charged with conspiracy and perjury, but not on IIPA or the Espionage Act.

millco88

Jon H,

My point is that the CIA has acted very inconsistently about this entire thing. The way they handled Novak is just another example. I believe, but I obviously can't prove, that this was orchestrated within the CIA to deflect all the criticism about WMDs not being found. According to Woodward's book, Tenet claimed it was a slam dunk. That's obviously not the case.

I just think that any indictments should start in the CIA; that's where any leaking HAD to have started.

Clarice

Don
t you think is suspicious that TM is gone as this all comes out? LOL

Send out a search party and drag him bqck here.*wink*

I must say, I find Miller's report of her testimony odd..

In any event if the sp was counting on it to make his case against Libby, he must have been disappointed because there is simply in it no basis for a criminal indictment. Nor can I imagine why the hell there is anything in those notes worth sitting in jail for 18 months.

kim

I wanna know where to send my application for the Judy Miller Fan Club.
==========================

Sue

Jon,

You keep changing the testimony. Wilson did not say he called to talk to Novak at CNN. He said he called to talk to a person at CNN that he knew in hopes he could get him to stop Novak.

So, as long as they 'get' Rove and Libby, possibly more in the WH, you don't care how. Sort of like how the wingers felt about Clinton. Just get them and get them anyway you can.

At least this 'winger' is willing to admit that Rove and Libby lied. Whether they lied to the SP is another story, but they did talk to reporters about Wilson and his wife. You on the other hand will not admit Wilson lied, about everything he said, except for sipping mint tea and discussing the scarves being worn to ward off the dust.

Newby

"he must have been disappointed because there is simply in it no basis for a criminal indictment"

Clarice-how you can possibly state that without having seen Libby's testimony?

JayDee

Cecil, it involves national security because it involves being faithful to the letter of the law, which they also are sworn to uphold. It isn't the prerogative of high level admin officials to decide when or if something deserves to be classified. I can't think of any area of government where it is more critical to be fastidious in following procedure, no matter how foolish one may personally find it to be.

We also have no idea if there were any national security implications that resulted from Plame's identity being released. The fact that Fitzgerald's office has identified this as a serious criminal investigation leaves open the possibility that there were repercussions we are unaware of.

If anyone is still interested in the whole Judy Miller/Libby angle, this is an interesting interview with Bob Bennett.

One of Miller's lawyers, Robert Bennett, was asked Sunday whether he thought Libby's letter was an attempt to steer her prospective testimony.
"I wouldn't say the answer to that is yes, but it was very troubling," Bennett said on ABC's "This Week."
"Our reaction when we got that letter, both Judy's and mine, is that was a very stupid thing to put in a letter because it just complicated the situation," Bennett said.
"It was a very foolish thing to put in a letter, as evidenced by the fact that you're highlighting it here," Bennett said. "It was a close call and she was troubled by it; no question about it."

Does anyone seriously think Libby will escape indictment here?

clarice

newby, let's assume Libby denied telling Miller about Plame. What she says she testified to is that she can't remember who told her,but she doesn't think he did tell her..

Therefore, no+can't remember, doesn't think he did=nada.

Prosecutors are not supposed to issue indictments unless they think there is a strong likelihood they can get a conviction--

kim

Yes, I do. His chief witness is Judy Root Dies.
=================================================

clarice

JayDee-How silly is Bennett's suggestion when we are talking about a letter a copy of which was transmitted to the sp--If you're trying to affect testimony would you do it in such a public manner?

The truth, I think, is that the Libby and Miller counsel have been in a long running pissing match, and I think it's because Abrams is a fool.

Newby

"What she says she testified to is that she can't remember who told her,but she doesn't think he did tell her.."

She actually testified her Libby told her Wilson's wife worked for the bureau on June 23rd.

Newby

Now if Libby testified Russert first told him about Plame in July-as TM actually proposes in his post far above-Libby has problems. Unless Miller perjured herself, i.e. she left jail so she commit a crime.

Newby

Actually-she did perjure herself-but it's hard to prove someone really cant remember. She's a scumbag.

Newby

BTW-please return to TM's October 11 post: "Murray Waas - Spotlight On Libby" where TM attempted to debunk Waas.

Waas was right-TM (and you Clarice) were wrong. Miller and Libby were discussing Plame (without the name) on June 23rd.

And it appears Waas's source was someone at the NYT who had seen Judy's notes.

Newby

Wow that October 11 comment thread is entertaining. Here's Cecil Turner:

"The logical explanation is the red-pen you noted above. The only "firsthand knowledge" claimed by Waas is negative (i.e., Scooter never mentioned the conversation--not what it was about). Miller's late discovery could as easily mean she hadn't considered it relevant . . . and as she's yet to testify about it, there's no way of knowing whether Plame was ever mentioned. I'd bet not."

Wong Cecil Turner! And everything you people say on this thread will similarly be disproven in four or five days. Cheers.

kim

Well, yes and no. It was mentioned, apparently, in passing.
================================================

Cecil Turner

It isn't the prerogative of high level admin officials to decide when or if something deserves to be classified.

Assumes they knew they knew she was covert, which is not proven (or even credibly asserted in the available evidence).

Wong Cecil Turner! And everything you people say on this thread will similarly be disproven in four or five days.

Glad to see such enthusiasm. Yes, my "bet" would have been wrong (well, mostly, her name wasn't mentioned, but according to Miller she did come up):

Soon afterward Mr. Libby raised the subject of Mr. Wilson's wife for the first time. I wrote in my notes, inside parentheses, "Wife works in bureau?"
Not sure what "bureau" means, and the rest of Judy's version of the testimony is not exactly illuminating either. The "Flame" bit was especially shrugworthy. But if you've got the answers, please share 'em.

Newby

Well CT-don't you think it's kinda weird that Judy just sorta turns up at a rodeo(?) in Wyoming and coincidentally (?) runs into Scooter who was there on vacation with Cheney?

Chew on that bone. After all, we got 8 whole pages of redacted material to fill-and the Rove Hadley e-mail is only about 4 lines.

Newby

"It was mentioned, apparently, in passing"

A little mention is like a little pregnant,Kim.

Cecil Turner

Well CT-don't you think it's kinda weird that Judy just sorta turns up at a rodeo(?) in Wyoming

Not sure why that would be all that weird--if Cheney was there (which I presume he was) there must have been something going on. The Aspen reference in Libby's waiver to Miller, however, was weird enough to be surreal. (Ditto for the letter from Fitzgerald that apparently prompted it.) I'll freely admit cluelessness on that subject, and in fact I'm pretty sure I don't want to know.

Newby

Ha. Excuse my enthusiasm CT-but since you are the only formidable defender of the administration among the general lunatic posse round here- I view your miscues as especially telling.

Cecil Turner

I view your miscues as especially telling.

I've been accused recently (Jeff?) of excessive parsimony . . . a charge with more than a grain of truth. I'm also struck by the coincidence of the INR memo being bandied about on the Africa trip, right before Novak's column. And perhaps I'm reading too much into it, but that appears to be the main source of the Administration's knowledge of Plame's involvement . . . and the tidbit was too juicy to keep, and leaked immediately. That still seems to me the most likely scenario.

There's little doubt that some in the media (especially at the Times) knew more about the Wilsons than the Administration did initially (Joe was leaking to them, and then writing for them). Conversations before the INR memo was drafted would tend to support the "learned it from the media" interpretation. However, the evidence for that is sketchy at best.

Anyway, that was my (apparently derailed) logic train, which appears to've jumped the tracks over incomplete data. Some obvious possibilities are that the INR memo leaked earlier than I surmised (it was drafted on 10 June, so could be a factor anytime afterward), there was another source (possibly intel folks in the WHIG, who presumably had contacts with the CIA WMD shop), or it was recycled from the media. As far as I can tell, there's no credible reports of any of the above, and nothing to suggest one over the others.

kim

Clang, clang, clang, bad metaphor, Mr. Newby. A little mention is not like a little pregnant. Whatever gave you that misconception?

CK, what about BR's suggestion that the INR memo is phony?
============================================

Dennis Morgan

This case has always smelled fishy to me, and I think Robert Parry has hit the nail on the head. His tough, investigative journalism has finally paid off - he's solved the mystery - at least where Miller is concerned. He has her rightly pegged as one of those "patriotic" journalists who have sold out to Washington's neocon cronies and corporate sponsors. In other words, she abandoned journalist integrity and the role of media watchdog for the role of Washington lapdog.

It goes something like this. Originally, Libby wouldn't give her a release because he wanted to make sure that she wouldn't contradict his testimony that he hadn't mentioned Valerie Wilson-Plame's name to her. So, she had to figure out a way to testify without implicating Libby - in other words, how to cover up. She sat in jail for 85 days before she realized that Fitzgerald, the Prosecutor, wasn't going to give in. Meanwhile, she figured a way to get out. She'd make a deal to testify if she didn't have to give away any other sources except Libby. Then she said that Libby hadn't mentioned Plame's name, but that some other person, someone she conveniently forgot, mentioned the name to her. That way, she wouldn't have to implicate Libby, wouldn't be pressed to give up the name, and she could use her get out of jail free card.

I don't know if her ploy will work or not but the real story to all this is how some mainstream American journalists have lost their objectivity and journalist integrity such that they can easily be sucked into Washington's labyrinthine collection of cover ups.

=================

The back story to the Judith Miller fiasco at the New York Times is the long-term erosion of skeptical journalism in the face of U.S. government pressure for greater "patriotism" from the press. In the case of Miller and the Iraq War, the barrier between reporter and government seems to have washed away almost completely.

For the full story of how Miller and other journalists lost their way,
go to Consortiumnews.com at http://www.consortiumnews.com .

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Wilson/Plame