Skip to comments.Dangerous Liaisons: Wilson, Armitage and the MSM
Posted on 09/02/2006 7:16:12 PM PDT by STARWISE
In an article shamelessly ignoring its role in the Wilson hoax and solicitous of the leaker, the New York Times, on a holiday weekend Saturday, mentions that Richard Armitage was the source of the leak of Plames identity.*
It focuses on whether Fitzgerald was right to continue the prosecution after he knew Novak didnt learn about Plame from Rove or Libby, the people the paper railed against from the moment Nicholas Kristof megaphoned Ambassador Munchausens fabulous tale of his Mission to Niger more three years ago:
WASHINGTON, Sept. 1 An enduring mystery of the C.I.A. leak case has been solved in recent days, but with a new twist: Patrick J. Fitzgerald, the prosecutor, knew the identity of the leaker from his very first day in the special counsels chair, but kept the inquiry open for nearly two more years before indicting I. Lewis Libby Jr., Vice President Dick Cheneys former chief of staff, on obstruction charges.
Now, the question of whether Mr. Fitzgerald properly exercised his prosecutorial discretion in continuing to pursue possible wrongdoing in the case has become the subject of rich debate on editorial pages and in legal and political circles.
To me, its an enduring mystery how the paper which was the first to print as truth Wilsons lies and which trumpeted them for three years, can write this self-protecting bilge with a straight face.Still, if you still believe anything they publish, there are two eyeopeners in this article:
He turned over his calendars, datebooks and even his wifes computer in the course of the inquiry, those associates said. But Mr. Armitage kept his actions secret, not even telling President Bush because the prosecutor asked him not to divulge it, the people said.
Of course, the President had, from the day a leak was claimed, asked everyone in his Administration to tell him if they had leaked. He certainly would not have agreed to an investigation nor demanded his people cooperate with it, even signing waivers of press confidentiality, had he known who the leaker was. He would have just fired him or kept him on with the explanationwhich no one much questionsthat it was inadvertent, regretful and had not in any way harmed national security.
Had Armitage followed his boss orders, the Administration would not have been kept in the dark and frequently pummeled for three years in the NYT for outing Plame, punishing a whistleblower and damaging national security (ironically even as the paper itself deliberately leaked critical national security secrets which the Administration and a bipartisan Congressional delegation begged the paper not to publish). Another question is the identity of this prosecutor who, by the Times account,
asked him not to divulge it, the people said.
Fitzgerald wasnt appointed until months after Armitages miraculous memory recovery about Novak. No one in the DOJ could have asked him not to tell the President.
And, if Armitage had turned over his calendars, why did the prosecutor apparently fail to ask him about the meeting with Woodward on June 12? This failure to ask about notations of conversations with other reporters looks to me like even more evidence of the skewed nature of this probe.
Kind of like Durham, NC DA Mike Nifongs using a photo identification which showed only the faces of the Duke Lacrosse team when asking the alleged victim to identify her attackers. (Hey, pick a fish out of only this barrel for me to prosecute.)
Mr. Armitage had prepared a resignation letter, his associates said. But he stayed on the job because State Department officials advised that his sudden departure could lead to the disclosure of his role in the leak, the people aware of his actions said.Better to have left Libby and Rove dangling than tip them off to the truth? Got it. Prince of a fellow. And boy, those unnamed State department officials are paragons of loyalty and virtue. Real statesmen.
The Washington Post called Wilson a liar and dubbed the denouement of his fable End of an Affair.
Id call this new series of disclosures Dangerous Liaisons because at the moment a lot of people in the Capitol remind me of the Marquise de Merteuil after her schemings have been discovered.
As for the New York Times, I have to say its continuing reportage on this matter is to me simply indescribable.
In the meantime, even the Washington Posts volte face is deficient in a number of respects. And it is a volte face. Tom Maguire notes, because he is so fair, a number of occasions where several of the Posts writers, Woodward, Dana Priest and Walter Pincus, downplayed the incident.Still, other writers at the Post did continue the Wilson fable, which Pincus began, and the paper waited two and one-half years to correct those lies, even after the SenateSelectCommission on Intelligence and the Butler and Robb-Silverman Commissions established that the claims made by Wilson were fabrications.
But the Post piece insinuates that even if the prosecution was based on a false premise that is no excuse for lying or obstructing it, giving more weight to the actual claims in the indictment than they merit.
In fact, this adds insult to injury. The charges in the indictment are as warped as the rest of the investigation and prosecution. Tom Maguire has some fun with this: With Cooper, it is clear (to some) that after Karl Rove learned from Novak that a column about Wilson and Plame was imminent, Rove ruthlessly sat by the phone and waited for Matt Cooper to call him and ask about Niger.
Then when Cooper interviewed Libby the next day, Libby was so brutal and crafty that he never raised the subject of Ms. Plame, but offered something like I heard that, too when Cooper asked him about her.
But its worse than that. In pretrial disovery the judge found that the documents in Times possession showed that however Cooper testified, his testimony would be impeachable at trial.
Let me clarify what this means. It means Time has had in its possession from the outset evidence that Cooper said one thing in the newsroom and another to the grand jury.
What else can this mean?
As to Miller, Tom observes mordantly,
And the Judy Miller leak? Libby was so intent on besmirching Wilson with the nepotism charge that he forgot to tell Judy that Ms. Plame had a role in arranging her husbands trip to Niger.
And Special Counsel Fitzgerald still cant prove that Libby was aware of Ms. Plames classified status back when he was conspiring to punish Joe by outing hs wife. (Too bad Libby didnt use his psychic powers to get the truth about Saddams WMDs ). Oh well Fitzgerald only had two years to look into this. The truth will emerge any day now, or at least, within the next 24 business hours.
As to Miller, the Judge has held that documentation in the New York Times possession MAY impeach her testimony depending on how she testifies.
After she testifies Libby will get to see and use it. In any event (even by her reports of her testimony) it was so unintelligible, the variations in her and Libbys testimony is only a factor in an obstruction charge, not an independent perjury or false tesimony charge.
I wonder if Armitages calendar shows notations of conversations with Miller?
If so, I wonder whether the prosecutor ignored those as he apparently did the notations respecting Woodward? Her notes, after all, showed she had Wilsons name and phone number and numerous references to VictoriaWilson/Plame /Flame? which she said were not references to her conversations with Libby, and by agreement with the Prosecutor those sources were not revealed.
This leaves, the Russert/Libby conversation.
As Ive detailed more fully:
Libby testified that on July 10 or 11, 2003 he had a conversation with Tim Russert of NBC. According to Libbys grand jury statement, Russert asked him if he (Libby) was aware that Wilsons wife worked for the CIA and told Libby all the reporters knew it.
According to the indictment Libby and Russert did not discuss this at all.
Since Woodward has come forward, he has said he might well have approached Libby about that time about Wilson and Plame, right after his conversation with Armitage on June 12, 2003.
His notes indicate he intended to ask Libby about Wilson and Plame and may well have. He does not believe Libby responded to this because he has no notation that he did.
So, it is entirely possible, assuming Russerts testimony is credible, that he never discussed this at all with Libby, Libby may have confused his conversation with Russert at about the very same time with the one he had with Woodward.
Woodward unsuccessfully tried twice in 2004 to get a waiver from Armitage so that he could tell the Prosecutor about his conversation with Armitage. He has said,
And my sworn testimony is that [this conversation with Libby is] possible. I simply dont recall it, and he certainly said nothing. But after long interviews and you have long lists of questions, you cant really say, Gee, did I ask that or that. At least, two years later, I cant. Maybe the next day I might have been able to.
If Armitage had given Woodward the early waiver he sought, and Fitzgerald then asked Woodward about any conversations with Libby, this might have finally concluded the matter, for the likely confusion of the two conversations on the same day is patent.
And Libby is the man charged with obstruction?
*The Times did mention Armitage on August 30th, in this article. We regret the earlier misstatement that it hadnt. Clarice Feldman is an attorney in Washington, DC, who has covered the Plame/Wilson/Fitzgerald/Armitage scandal extensively.
"Stupid Anti-America Liasions" would appear to be more fitting and accurate.
The one nice thing about Liberal/Socialists is that they tend to kill their young.
Thank God for Clarice .. she's still on the case, and no trivia or smokescreens fool her. I'm just seething at what Armitage and Powell have done, and thrilled they're being publicly castigated. They need to answer for this. I wonder if they feel any shame at all.
Forget the minutae, a stalemate would be a victory.
So, how many "journalists" will be hounding Fitz over the next week? Hounding Powell?
Richard Armitage deserves so much worse than the simple anonymity that is likely to befall him. It would be sweet if something turned up that allows him to prosecuted, and then sued by Rove and Libby in civil court.
I am afraid that most of the "castigating" is being done on the internet level though..
It seems like the newspapers are trying to just give the story the least amount of explanation as is necessary...after putting reams worth in the papers before the story abruptly changed last week.
I still haven't heard this on any show except Brit's show...except for a brief mention tonight on the Beltway Boyz...
Where are the hour long interviews on Meet the Press, 60 Minutes, Hardball, etc.
Didn't Joe Wilson get the whole hour once on 60 minutes??
A lot more people probably saw him on 60 Minutes than will EVER read Clarice's articles, unfortunately.
I know I sound pessimistic...but, just like I sense Soros/Clinton in the instigation of this plot...I sense them in the cover up...and the behaviour of Armitage and Powell...in NOT being honest with Bush.
This is really no different than the National Guard Memos except that it was more wide spread. Heads should roll. There was a purging at the BBC when they got caught lieing about Blair.
Who wants to wager that Armitage will show up as an advisor to some demoratic candidate?
Knowing that it was the BBC my first thought is to wonder if the purgung was of those who exposed the lies.
I don't know about that. But I'm ready to beat the crap out of him.
All about it here...
I wonder if they feel any shame at all.
Maybe over being outted, but that might be giving them too much credit.
He already is .. as is supposedly PukyPowell: MC CAIN!
Not likely. Having him on board means it only continues the undoing of Wilson's lies.
It's no wonder that Powell is in favor of affirmative action.
Powell has the "honor" of being unfaithful to both Clinton and Bush. What a POS he is!