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February 07, 2007


Jim E.

When and why did Matt Apuzzo become such a hero to clarice?


Jim E: hhhmmm

maybe for being a good reporter, instead of an agenda driven propagandist?



And, by the way, thanks for the condensing.

Perry Mason

This is the prosecution's case?

That's it? Really?


If this were a boxing match, I think the referee would have stopped the fight after the blows to Russert credibility today. Maybe Fitz will throw in the towel in the morning.


I love the ying and the yang.
Here Wells is a superhero who cut Timmy down to size, at FDL wells is a bumbling fool who didn't make inroads against Timmy's credibility...

Why can't I get Judy Collins out of my head?


Near what I can tell, none of this stuff Clarice and Tom are reporting is actually making it to the news broadcasts. Matthews tonight basically boiled everything down to: Cheney did it. Whatever the truth is at trial, the story being bandied about is something else. And it's the one the press will keep.


The press is tied to its narrative like Ahab.

Carol Herman


When Dan Rather PURPOSELY went on the air to give what he thought was a knockout blow to the President's re-election bid (remember the "fake but accurate" TANG memo's supplied to Mary Mapes, after her doing 5 years worth of research?)

I bet Dan Rather walked off the set that night, as a blow hard, would, thinking he had hit a homer. WITH A BOOMERANG.

There's no score card here, yet. But we KNOW Cooper, last week, shed all his press buddies, on the second day of his testimony, when he went to the cafeteria to eat. And, nobody came up to give him a "hug."

If you don't get your "hug" the left has stopped loving you. And, then?

Well, Rove didn't get perp walked. The whole "gang against the president" did not enjoy much of a Fitzmas. And, Fitz, yet again, seems to have trouble "knocking things out of the ballpark." Though he sure did you baseball analogies during his PRESSER.

And, away from center stage; yet, just like a 3-ring circus, the committee that "oversees" ..l SAW A FLAW IN ROCKEFELLER's committee ... Because the email from Plame to her "boss" ... requesting her husband be sent to check out the 1999 Niger caper. OOPS. Paper. Was dated a DAY BEFORE Cheney's request to find out more about yellow cake, and Iraq. ONE WHOLE DAY BEFORE. Yet, ESP is not one of the challenges, here.

How long did it take New York Head Waiters to STOP giving Dan Rather the "best" table at lunchtime? Answer that queston. Because that's how long it takes for Russert to realize his carefully crafted facade just went KABOOM.

Harry MacD

The Wreck of the Patrick Fitzgerald.

Here lies the prosecutor who obstructed his own investigation.


In looking at cboldt's copies of the current filings, I see that Fitzgerald's arguments follow the same basic reasoning as yesterday's Mitchell filings. The defense can't put someone on the stand simply to impeach them, nor may they impeach a witness with evidence that only goes to a collateral issue.
At least that's my read, but I am a non-lawyer and apparently a shithead.


The Wreck of the Patrick Fitzgerald.



He might have broke up and took water.


Harry, I was so worried about how hard it is for the defense (any defense in a case like this) to deal with these amorphous obstruction charges--Wells just showed the way. Of course, it was obvious from day one that only the prosecution obstructed a fair investigation.

Maybe Mueller should smell the coffee and stop letting his agents be used as errand boys for out of control prosecutors. Just saying.


-- I am a non-lawyer and apparently a shithead. --

The "shithead" and "shithole" epithets weren't meant to be taken as a blanket - obviously not everybody who posts here rubs me the wrong way. But clearly, I rub many the wrong way; plus I'm tired of the scene. Better all around when I'm a lurker or absent.


I hope after today Fitz doesn't expect much leeway from the judge on any discretionary rulings. Cts do not like this crap--trying to bury the knish about phony pleadings and burying in a fn that the notes of Russert's interviews are missing. Right after Bond's testimony. And the obvious disparity in how different reporters were treated. No NO


cboldt -

I'm not going to reprise the closing scene from "Shane", but it seems to me your equal opportunity skepticism adds value here.


the defense is precluded from showing that, blinded by his nonsensical view of what happened, the special prosecutor obstructed the investigation himself

nicely done...

Its a cliffhanger ... will Russert testify on the lap of his attorney tomorrow, and just mouth the words..."I do not specifically recall"


Christopher Fotos

Near what I can tell, none of this stuff Clarice and Tom are reporting is actually making it to the news broadcasts

Ditto for tomorrow's account posted tonight on page four of the Washington Post by Leonnig/Goldstein, Russert Says He Didn't Tell Libby About CIA Officer:

Tim Russert, the Washington bureau chief for NBC News, yesterday swiftly and firmly rejected I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby's assertion that the journalist revealed the identity of an undercover CIA officer to him during a telephone call in the summer of 2003.

Testifying as the final, and perhaps most critical, prosecution witness in the perjury trial of Vice President Cheney's former chief of staff, Russert recounted their conversation that July and how a "very agitated" Libby called to complain about MSNBC's "Hardball." Russert said that the subject of the CIA officer, Valerie Plame, never came up and that he could not have told Libby anything about her.

"That would be impossible," Russert said, "because I didn't know who that person was until several days later."...

There's nothing in here about the following, the crib from clarice:

In sum, Wells established that (a) the FBI report of his conversations (they say he had two, he only recalls one) made far closer in time to the event indicate he conceded that Ms. Wilson's name may have come up in their conversation though he earlier discounted that as "impossible" (b) In a heated matter involving the Buffalo News, his own memory was faulty. He'd made two angry calls to a critical reporter, denied that he had, and then, after checking his phone records, apologized, asserting he had no memory whatsoever of the calls, and (c) while making an impassioned plea for the right of reporters to protect the confidentiality of sources, he'd already twice discussed the Libby exchanges with the FBI and failed to disclose that to the Court or the public.

I may post briefly about this at PostWatch, since Leonnig/Goldstein repeat what is now the re-invented error about Wilson, Niger and uranium:

Prosecutors spent three years investigating whether senior Bush administration officials deliberately revealed Plame's status to punish her husband, former ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV. The CIA had sent him to Africa in 2002 to investigate reports that Iraq had been trying to buy nuclear material there. Wilson found no evidence of the activity and in July 2003 accused the administration of twisting his findings to justify going to war. Eight days after he went public with his accusations, his wife's name and CIA role were revealed in a syndicated column by Robert D. Novak.

I can't tell you how many times I blogged about Howard Kurtz and two or three other reporters also misreporting this, and I also wrote to ombudsman Deborah Howell, who cordially replied and did nothing. But that's my obsession, not yours.

Christopher Fotos

I should also add, by the way, in case someone comes back to look at that link tomorrow--occasionally the washingtonpost.com links starts pointing to a revised version of the story, without any indication of that.



on the WAPO link and revisions? JMH as noted this WAPO slight of hand practice numerous, numerous times.

Were a little obsessed with the constant bad Wilson reporting too.

glenda waggoner

Clarice-Thank you for a report making me feel I was
in the courtroom and could see the sweat on Russert's brow. The past week I have been at the
bedside of friend, doing the important things in life, giving comfort to all left behind when this
life's journey ends...so now that the services are
over, I have tried to catch up on this farcical trial, and the cowards in congress. I have always
felt, the NBC pressers circled the wagons, willing
to condemn Mr. Libby for doing his job, well-but
that didn't fit into their "managed care" of pushing for democrat majorities. They all seem to
be so intimidated by Bush/Cheney, rules and common
decency no longer exist in the shameless world of
MSM-who only report what they want you to believe-true
or not.


I would have cancelled by subscription to the Post 3 years ago but my husband loves the sports sections (mostly alums from our alma mater, I might say.) I'd pay the same for home delivery of just the Spots Section (and most Angelenos would do the same for the LAT, too). I hate to offer them sound business advice though.

Carol Herman


Ah, Christopher Fotos. But it's PAGE 4.

Everybody knows the most important place is on PAGE ONE, Above the fold.

So, if nothing else? Russert's been demoted.

If he had bragging rights? They're gone.

As to Muller and his FIB, he might want to resign? What other exit does he have?

Can't imagine writing on the blackboard: I PROMISE NEVER TO BE A WATER BOY AGAIN FOR AMERICA'S ENEMIES, wouldn't work.

As Mary Matalan can now correct her husband: It's the CONSTITUTION, STUPID.

J. Egar Hoover must have cursed his agency when death knocked on his door. He never wanted anyone to go from Seat #2. To Seat #1. JUST ASK MARK FELT.


Thanks, glenda.

Christopher Fotos

on the WAPO link and revisions? JMH as noted this WAPO slight of hand practice numerous, numerous times.

Man, that drives me crazy. Plus it's inexcusable. Of course the reporters go all postal if someone in government does the same kind of thing.


Deeply shaken?

I beg to differ.

Dan S


Government is held to a much higher standard by the media (and should be!) than that to which the media holds itself. Of course, that really isn't saying much.

Tom Bowler

Very nice write up Clarice! Well done!

On a side note, my fantasy still has some life. Fitzgerald called Russert (Tim to the folks at FDL) to the stand, asked him a couple of soft toss questions, and then handed him over gift wrapped to Wells. And that seems to be the end of Fitz's case. Amazing.


Thanks, but I think it is a fantasy..My early fantasy is that he was actually investigating the Wilson/Plame/rogue CIA scam.
We can both dream, can't we?


I'll settle for collateral damage to the press.

JM Hanes

Well if you're lurking cboldt, perhaps you'll notice that on the thread where you called this place a "shithole" folks are actually trying to answer the question you posed. I, myself, was trying to figure out what the question was when you bid Sayonara. If you're tired of this scene, fine, but pls. don't pretend that things are "Better all around when I'm a lurker or absent."

Sara (Squiggler)

Wells tells judge he has at least 2 more hours of cross with Russert. He has sure made the most of that 11 min. of direct.


I predicted at the outset, the media would regret what they asked for. I was right. In Spades.

Clarice Feldman

The media did not ask for this. The media has been running away from the Fitzgerald investigation.

Just like the Bush administration.

Poor Tim. Just like Judy Miller - he did his best to protect Scooter. He testified before the FBI with no idea that his testimony would be damaging to Scooter (after all Scooter did not leak to him). Later when he realized the implications he resisted testifying before the grand jury - a fight that he ultimately lost.

Russert also maintained total silence on his own show. Had he put his viewers first - he would have revealed things before the 2004 elections which would have been damaging to the Bush Administration.

Ironically he was trashed by the lawyer of the same person that he fought hard to protect.

The left is shedding no tears for the media. Read the article at Firedoglake where the author says:
Tomorrow, another member of the club whose story has been as inconsistent and shot full of holes as Russert — Andrea Mitchell — will try to quash a subpoena to appear for the defense. She'll be joined by Jill Abramson of the New York Times, who is no doubt anxious to avoid being questioned about whether Judy Miller ever pitched the Wilson story to the Times after Libby fed it to her. It was my understanding that Fitzgerald will also be filing motions to quash these tonight, and for perhaps the first time I have to say there is a side of me that hopes he does not meet with success. The only way the public is every going to get any straight answers out of these two is under oath, and the fabrications one tells so freely to Don Imus become much more risky before a judge and jury.

Tom Bowler

Yeah, I had that fantasy too, once. Yes, we'll both dream, I think.


Yeah - I had that fantasy once too; got over it when I stopped obsessively reading Macranger.

I still think Mac's right, but no one will ever investigate it.


So what's going on with trackbacks? Disabled? Under strict supervision?

Carol Herman


InstaPundit put up a link! I used it to reach this page thru his site. Neat.


Even the NYT has realized there's a bit of a problem, just a bit of one:

Mr. Russert, the moderator of “Meet the Press,” was unequivocal in his testimony that no such conversation with Mr. Libby occurred. But when Mr. Libby’s chief defense lawyer, Theodore V. Wells Jr., began his efforts to disparage Mr. Russert’s reliability in cross-examination, Mr. Russert’s confident demeanor changed abruptly.

Mr. Russert, whose appearance drew the largest crowd of spectators yet in the three-week-long trial, stopped speaking in the confident, complete sentences in which he had answered the prosecutor in his direct testimony. Instead, he became more deliberate and halting in his responses, frequently asking Mr. Wells to repeat the question or asking for time to examine the document about which he was being asked. “Say again?” he said frequently.

JM Hanes


"Poor Tim. Just like Judy Miller - he did his best to protect Scooter...."

LOL! You and Jim E. must read the same blogs. He floated that same Russert defense on a different thread almost 2 hours ago! Any closer and I'd be making cracks about marching in lockstep.


--The media did not ask for this. The media has been running away from the Fitzgerald investigation.--

The Right Thing, at Last,

New York Times Op-Ed, December 31, 2003:

"We may never know what damage was caused by Mr. Ashcroft's delay of nearly two months in taking the proper action. Further time will now be lost as Mr. Fitzgerald gets up to speed on the investigation."

Christopher Fotos

My own post is up on the Washington Post's coverage, for those who are interested.


tsk9 - Even the Bush administration appointed Fitz in 2003.

Both the media and the Bush admin have been running away from Fitz.


LOL! You and Jim E. must read the same blogs. He floated that same Russert defense on a different thread almost 2 hours ago! Any closer and I'd be making cracks about marching in lockstep.

What Russert defense? I fail to see where I was defending Russert.

Could you point me to the Jim E. thread?


In sum, Wells established that (a) the FBI report of his conversations (they say he had two, he only recalls one)...

The FBI report said roughly: Russert couldn't rule out a second conversation with Libby.

Russert denied saying that he couldn't rule out a second meeting. He said those weren't his words; he had no memory of a second meeting.

My guess is the FBI asked him something along the lines "Can you be absolutely certain a second conversation took place?", he replied "no" and they wrote down "Mr. Russert couldn't rule out a second conversation."


Yes, but you said "The media did not ask for this.", and you were wrong, they did!


Actually - in the long run the media and the people will benefit if we can get rid of the cozy relationships between the media and the government, which has been so brutally exposed by Fitz.


Pete- and replace those cozy relationships with what? Bloggers that do blackface and drop the f-bomb and work to get politicians elected?
We're in for a real revolution, baby!


Great Chris--didn't realize you had Post watch. Now I know where to send my sputterings .

Pete--actually all the testimony is that the media REFUSED to publish even the government's denials , they were so besotted with Ambassador Munchausen, Emma Peel (and sub rosa the Kerry campaign).

Christopher Fotos

Thanks, Clarice.

Carol Herman



I cannot imagine there won't be "fall out" from this.

But it's been such a slow moving thing. From the "Rove Frog March" that never happened. Though Fitz kept him as an "active candidate" for an extra year. To the Fitmas that keeps on fizzling.

You'd think if people were exposed to "HOT SEATS" causing FIZZLING. They'd point to the causes of global warming RIGHT THERE!


Wow. That was a surprise - they tore Tim to shreds - I never suspected that - I thought he would be the most believable one out of the bunch, probably because for one, I like watching his show. The past incident of him not "remembering" the complaint he made about the show was a killer. After this, I guess Libby should get off, as Russert and Cooper are not believable and Miller's part doesn't really rise to the level of materiality. A Perry Mason moment today.

JM Hanes

Christopher, from your Post Watch analysis:

"The Post's Leonnig and Goldstein spared you from these unneccessarily interesting developments."

LOL! Great stuff! Leonnig is one of the worst of 'em.


Pete--actually all the testimony is that the media REFUSED to publish even the government's denials , they were so besotted with Ambassador Munchausen, Emma Peel (and sub rosa the Kerry campaign)

The media did not refuse to publish Bush administration's denials.

The problem for the Bush administration is a) they admitted they should not have included the 16 words, b) no WMDs were found.

Wilson is a very small piece of the puzzle. Kerry is history. The greater issue is how the Iraq war was sold. And with the war gone south, things will emerge that the Bush administration desparately tried to hide.


Pete- and replace those cozy relationships with what?

With some independence and some honesty.

With an attitude where a TV anchor would not be afraid to disclose breaking news that would be embarrasing to the Vice President.


Well Hadley should be shot for withdrawing the 16 words they were accurate when said and are accurate today.

Christopher Fotos

Thank you, JM. I'm just relieved I correctly spelled "unnecessarily."

JM Hanes

Funny isn't it, that at the time Eckenrode retired, he thought an indictment of Hadley was imminent -- unless, of course, Jason L. just made that up. :)


The sixteen words were withdrawn because the administration realized that the information they used to derive those sixteen words was faulty.

But the big enchilada is WMDs. None were found.

sammy small

And now for your entertainment experience:

(with regrets to Harry McD above)

The Wreck of the Patrick Fitzgerald

The legend lives on from the White House on down
Of the leak that divulged Ms. Wilson
The leak, it is said, crossed the IIPA
And was cause for an investigation

As big careers go his was bigger than most
With his DOJ crew and their budget
So Patrick Fitzgerald spent two years or more
And could only indict for obstruction

With tons of subpoenas and FBI files
And reporters whose statements astounded
The Libby/Wells cross left the Fitz at a loss
And he realized failed memories abounded

Fitzgerald filed motions to speed up the trial
When he sensed that his case was in peril
And later that week when the jurors would speak
Came the wreck of the Patrick Fitzgerald


Sammy - I can hear Gordon Lightfoot now!

Perhaps to file under "Beauty Is In The Eyes of the Beholder" -- John Dickerson tonight on Slate:

"Wells starts hitting Russert with a flurry of questions, hoping to impugn his memory. But Russert is utterly unflappable. I've never seen a better witness at a trial."

Carol Herman


This is too good not to share. Someone named sk,Daddy51(?)up at FREE REPUBLIC, was commenting on Kristinn's POST FROM THE COURT ROOM, today. It seems some comments come from people who don't know Russert broke his ankle.

And, Kristinn mentions the crutches. WHICH GOT THIS CLEVER RETORT:

"I know liberalism is a heavy load to bear but I didn't think it needed crutches to keep you upright"

JM Hanes



Christopher Fotos

Bravo! Where's sammy's tip jar?



While headline said Dickerson, Seth Stevenson actually wrote the article


Both Huffington and I agree he was creamed..we can't BOTH be wrong.LOL


I blogged about today's testimony here.

Carol Herman


How many people believe Russert, when he said he treated Libby's first call (Staff/VP), as a "viewer complaint?" So it was not kept in his super-duper-can't-talk-about-it-file.

He TRIPPED OVER HIS DOG, by the way. (I sure hope he didn't hurt his pooch.)

And, it dawns on me, too, that the audience today resembled (per Kristinn's report at FREEPERS), that it was so full of celebrities! Big shots were there.

And, then? She said when everyone was filing out EVERYONE'S FACE SAGGED.

She also noticed that as soon as Wells pointed out that Russert LIED TO THE COURT, when he gave his excuse why he shouldn't have to "sit" at this trial, Fitz SLUMPED. And, then stared at the jurors.

Kept staring. He wanted to see how they were taking this.

Fitz not only fizzled, he slumped. Definite signs that global hot seat warming is making him melt in front of everyone's eyes.

Maybe, that's how the media will "skew" their reports. To take your mind off things, they'll report Fitz is a victim of Global Warming. Wells charges, in open court, about Russert's lying "to get out of testifying?" Seems big.


Very nice, Thx for the mention, Alcibiades,

Carol Herman


Anyone who wants to read Kristinn's piece up at FREEPERS, here's the address:

JM Hanes


Thanks for the correction. I was surprised to hear that Dickerson described Russert as unflappable. I'll check out the article, but it sounds like maybe Stevenson only read down to the "unflappable" in the Maine Web Report. :) It'll be interested to see if he says he was actually at the trial himself.

JM Hanes

Oops. Make that the Maine Web Report.



The article certainly implies he was there

Carol Herman


Kristinn answered, in comments, about the jurors. Here's what she said:

"I was sitting perpendicular to the jury so I couldn't read their expressions well. They do take plenty of notes. I can see them scribbling away."

Since Clarice will be in court on Monday, when Wells begins (if Walton doesn't toss this case out at some point, tomorrow). THEN we will know more about how the jurors are responding. Also, tomorrow, when Russert steps down, the jurors questions also come forward. They've really asked some wonderful questions, already, too.


D.C> Code of Professional Ethics


(a) A lawyer shall not knowingly:

(1) make a false statement of material fact or law to a tribunal;

(2) counsel or assist a client to engage in conduct that the lawyer knows is criminal or fraudulent, but a lawyer may discuss the legal consequences of any proposed course of conduct with a client and may counsel or assist a client to make a good-faith effort to determine the validity, scope, meaning, or application of the law;

(3) fail to disclose to the tribunal legal authority in the controlling jurisdiction not disclosed by opposing counsel and known to the lawyer to be dispositive of a question at issue and directly adverse to the position of the client; or

(4) offer evidence that the lawyer knows to be false, except as provided in paragraph (b).

(b) When the witness who intends to give evidence that the lawyer knows to be false is the lawyer's client and is the accused in a criminal case, the lawyer shall first make a good-faith effort to dissuade the client from presenting the false evidence; if the lawyer is unable to dissuade the client, the lawyer shall seek leave of the tribunal to withdraw. if the lawyer is unable to dissuade the client or to withdraw without seriously harming the client, the lawyer may put the client on the stand to testify in a narrative fashion, but the lawyer shall not examine the client in such manner as to elicit testimony which the lawyer knows to be false, and shall not argue the probative value of the client's testimony in closing argument.

(c) The duties stated in paragraph (a) continue to the conclusion of the proceeding.

(d) A lawyer who receives information clearly establishing that a fraud has been perpetrated upon the tribunal shall promptly reveal the fraud to the tribunal unless compliance with this duty would require disclosure of information otherwise protected by Rule 1.6, in which case the lawyer shall promptly call upon the client to rectify the fraud."

Christopher Fotos

Carol, thanks for that Freeper link. This detail may have been somewhere at JOM/Maine today, but I didn't see it:

Wells pointed out that Russert spoke about the conversation with Libby with the FBI agent without even verifying that the man on the phone was indeed an FBI agent or whether Libby had indeed waived confidentiality on the conversation.

Although I can reason back from there, with Russert's bizarre viewer complaint/confidential source dichotomy.

And now I go to bed.


Hey fascists

Didn't someone once say: "When your in a hole ... stop dig'n".

No WMDs (as expected). No democracy in Iraq (as expected). No viable goverment in Iraq (as expected). 100s of thousands dead (as expected). In short ... a preemptive war that preempted nothing but the longevity of soo many Iraqis (all expected). And all you fascists know to do is defend the handmaidens of this fiasco. How is that going to look to America? ... to the world?

Do you really think in your wildest imagination that Cheney will be found not guility? Keep dig'n that hole. As I have said before I am here to encourage you to do so. It will make it that much easier to bury your anachronistic idealogy for good.


Getting ahead of the gaem. Should read: Do you really think in your wildest imagination that Libby will be found not guility? Oh well, we'll be there soon as well.

Carol Herman


Oh, for pete's sake!

It is bed time, even here in California. But I wanted to add that Kristinn commented on the juror who is seated who is retired. I had thought he had worked for Newsweek,for some reason. But here's the scoop from Kristinn's COMMENT. Same as the link to her FREEPER post, but there's now more than 140 comments on the thread:

"The jury includes a retired Washington Post reporter who once worked for Post editor Bob Woodward and was a neighbor of NBC reporter Tim Russert, both of whom are to be witnesses in the case."

JM Hanes


Interesting on the retired reporter. Maybe he'll recognize media BS when he hears it faster than anyone else. I bet when they get to deliberations, one or more fellow jurors will ask him if reporters are really so dreadfully impaired.


Read this in lights at lucianne...good job clarice. Somebody better get it out because the MSM is sticking to the script.

After reading hours of gj, I think we can put it rest that Fitz ever considered looking at lying Joe. He was aiming straight for the top and Libby was supposed to flip. Looked like big case to me.


Earlier I mentioned the Phelps/Royce Newsday - here is Phelp's in the CJR

Two days after the Post story, the Justice Department told the White House that it was conducting a full formal investigation of the Plame outing, and ordered that all White House staff members preserve documents relating to conversations with Novak, Royce, and me. (Sources told us that the CIA had referred not only Novak’s column but our Newsday story to the Justice Department for investigation because we, too, had revealed new classified information — that Plame was working undercover.)

So petentially the referral and Tenet's letter were just as interested in the quoted "Larry Johnson's" in the Newsday article and Fitz ignored that -- as he :

Don’t worry, Fitzgerald assured us, he was not asking us to name our sources. He simply wanted some information about our discussions with the sources. Oh.

When it was announced in January that Fitzgerald would ask officials who could have talked to reporters to sign documents waiving their right to confidentiality, I scoffed. Surely no reporter would take such a document seriously. It seemed clear that these waivers were coerced, that they would not have been signed freely. The whole thing seemed like a joke.

But not to our lawyers. Fitzgerald’s call and subsequent follow-ups set off an anguished conversation within the paper about our rights under the First Amendment versus our responsibilities in a criminal case involving national security and the White House. Raymond Jansen, then Newsday’s publisher, wanted us to do our best to cooperate without violating fundamental principles.

In our case, Fitzgerald intimated that he might have a waiver from one or more of our sources. These exploratory conversations between a prosecutor and news organization usually involve quite a bit of shadow boxing. Neither side wants to give too much away, so things tend to be discussed in theoretical terms. But my impression was that Fitzgerald may have talked to or planned to talk to someone who had admitted talking to us. It seemed likely to us, however, that that person would deny having disclosed that Plame was undercover.

What Fitzgerald wanted us to do, among other things, was to differentiate between Source A, B, or C. Without giving up any names, would we simply outline which source had said what in our story?

To Royce and me, who have sixty-six years of journalism experience between us, this was out of the question. For one thing, it seemed that the waivers were not freely given and were therefore worthless. It was clear that a refusal to sign would lead to dismissal. We would have to talk personally to our sources and have them assure us convincingly they wanted us to talk. But more fundamentally, why would we want to do anything to help anyone track down our sources? Even if Source A did want us to talk, would not our participation help lead Fitzgerald to Source B? And finally, to ask a source to release us from a promise of anonymity may be, in a leak investigation, to ask for a favor he or she can’t refuse. A negative answer might be construed as an obstruction of justice....

We were mindful of this slippage as we debated what to do about Fitzgerald. But Royce and I told our editors at Newsday that we would become pariahs in Washington if we agreed to testify — that no other Washington reporter would ever do so. Newsday backed us up, and told Fitzgerald in mid-April that we would not help in any way.** He threatened a subpoena that for some reason never came.**

Of course, we were dead wrong about what the other reporters would do. But each reporter who has testified in the case has faced different circumstances. Glenn Kessler, a State Department reporter for The Washington Post (and a friend of mine), agreed to be interviewed by Fitzgerald last June about conversations he had with Libby the previous July. Kessler said in a statement that he testified because Libby wanted him to, and that he told Fitzgerald that Libby had not mentioned Wilson or Plame. (See clarification below.)

With somewhat more difficulty Kessler’s colleague, Walter Pincus, eventually reached a deal with Fitzgerald. (His source did not release Pincus from his promise of confidentiality, but eventually revealed himself to Fitzgerald.) Tim Russert of NBC reached a deal that limited the scope of the questions.

That left Cooper, the primary author of Time’s online follow-up to Novak’s column, and Judith Miller of The New York Times, who clearly attracted Fitzgerald’s interest when he learned of meetings between Miller and Libby around the time of the leak....



--So petentially the referral and Tenet's letter were just as interested in the quoted "Larry Johnson's" in the Newsday article and Fitz ignored that ???

Meant to leave that with a question mark



Carol Herman you write like someone on hallucinogens.



Sara (Squiggler)

With somewhat more difficulty Kessler’s colleague, Walter Pincus, eventually reached a deal with Fitzgerald. (His source did not release Pincus from his promise of confidentiality, but eventually revealed himself to Fitzgerald.)

Was Pincus' source Armitage?

Sara (Squiggler)


Thank you for the quotes and cites you've posted today. I have trouble loading Lance's site, very slow, so I especially appreciate the updates you were posting from the Maine Web Report.


I've only been following this trial minimally, but let me see if I can get this straight. The gist of it, from what I've read here, is that everyone had a shoddy memory. Reporters can't seem to take adequate notes, although Judy Miller's notes seem to have brought back a disproportionate flood of memories. Matt Cooper, on the other hand, takes such illegible notes that I can only assume they're in Da Vinci's mirror writing.

Agent Bond of the FBI is especially terrible at taking notes, which is disconcerting considering the fact that she works for the largest police force in the country (if you can call the FBI a police force).

Tim Russert is so addle-brained that he can't remember calling a reporter TWICE to complain about coverage in a Buffalo, NY newspaper yet we are supposed to believe everything else he tells us from memory.

Do I have all or most of that right?

Sara (Squiggler)

I'd say you nailed it, Shivv.



Ditto from me on the Maine guy's reports. I've been having a difficult time getting through to his site. Gracias.

Ralph L.

I tried to correct the WaPo's David Ignatius' distortion of the 16 words a few days ago in their website comments. Many, many pages of scary moonbat comments and very few sensible, temperate ones.

Back to my cocoon! Pronto!

Um, who is Shapiro? NBC weenie?

Sara (Squiggler)

I think the most surprising thing I heard today is that Wells expects he has 2 more hours of cross with Russert. This has me dying of curiosity. I have a feeling that all of today was to lay a foundation for what the real cross is tomorrow.

Jay Currie

Lied on affidavit, can't remember heated phone conversations, contradicts the (admittedly rather sloppy) FBI account of what he said, and, in as an aside, claims not to have used Val's actual name leaving the door wide open for what he might actually have said: and that's just Day One.

It is indeed Fitzmas with a shower of gifts for Libby.


Was Pincus' source Armitage?

Posted by: Sara (Squiggler) | February 08, 2007 at 12:40 AM

Well, that would be number 3 for Armitage. And what do you want to bet that it was another Columbo moment at the end of the interview (Oh, by the way, you may find this interesting...) Nope, no pattern of deliberate leaking there, just a series of off handed comments to the press.


I would suggest when you get a chance e-mail Chris Mathews ([email protected]) and explain how he is dead wrong about Cheney sending Wilson and the facts now prove it.

Plame volunteered her husband for the trip BEFORE cheney was even briefed on the intelligence and asked his question.

Perhaps enough pushing on MSNBC would get them to understand they still claim to be profession journalists.

Other Tom

"The media did not ask for this. The media has been running away from the Fitzgerald investigation...Just like the Bush administration."

An absolute whopper. Not a single member of the administration has asserted his fifth amendment privilege not to testify. Not a single subpoena has been resisted, not a single document request. Not a single petition has been filed with the court. Not a single sentence has been uttered critical of Fitzgerald. Not a single witness has criticized the prosecutor's questioning following his grand jury testimony. Compare and contrast with the Clinton administration and Kenneth Starr. The difference is extremely stark, and to suggest otherwise is simply dishonest.


I think the most surprising thing I heard today is that Wells expects he has 2 more hours of cross with Russert. This has me dying of curiosity. I have a feeling that all of today was to lay a foundation for what the real cross is tomorrow.

Posted by: Sara (Squiggler) | February 08, 2007 at 01:20 AM

I think where Wells is going with this is that Russert decieved his counsel, and in a sense conspired with the FBI/prosecutor in that deception. If he let his counsel make representations prior to or during the interview that controdicted the fact that Russert had already discussed both sides of the interview with the FBI, then Russert can not be trusted to tell the turth to the jury.

In short, if Russert decieved the court once regarding this issue (and possibly his own counsel), how do we know he is not doing it again.


Who ordered the code red on Russert?

Who at NBC saw the advance wire of Novaks column?



"""W: How did Wilson come to appear?

T: Producer saw op-ed on advance wire, invited him to appear."""""


Did Fitzgerald make the grand jurors aware of the FBI report of Russert's earlier interview?

Tom Bowler

And we're still in the prosecution's case! After Wells completes his disassembly of Russert, he will soon get to present the defense case. How will they take it over on the left? Will Russert still be "T:" for "Tim" over at FDL today? Or in this new light will they see him as an "R:"?

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