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The end of Wilson – Plame – Scooter – Fitzgerald – Rove – Armitage-gate

So in the end, all the wailing and gnashing of teeth by the BDS*-suffering left over the leak of Joe Wilson’s wife’s name to the press comes to nothing.

According to a new book, the original source of the leak was Richard Armitage, the Deputy Secretary of State under then Secretary of State Colin Powell. Armitage, described by columnist Robert Novak as “not a partisan gunslinger”, apparently had no political motive in revealing Plame’s name. Karl Rove and I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby then merely confirmed this already-known information in brief conversations with a couple of other reporters.

The disclosures about Armitage, gleaned from interviews with colleagues, friends and lawyers directly involved in the case, underscore one of the ironies of the Plame investigation: that the initial leak, seized on by administration critics as evidence of how far the White House was willing to go to smear an opponent, came from a man who had no apparent intention of harming anyone.

So it was not an effort by the administration to punish Joe Wilson for “speaking truth to power.” There was an effort of course to refute Wilson’s false claims about his trip to Niger, but those efforts were completely legitimate; they were not “punishment”. As we noted before, debunking Lyin’ Joe Wilson is not a crime. The revelation of Valerie Plame’s name was a barely-signifiicant side issue.

Now, it’s past time for Patrick Fitzgerald to wrap up his inquiry and end this thing.

More:
Memorandum
Captain’s Quarters
The Corner
JustOneMinute

Update: And more today (8/29/06) from The Washington Post and Christopher Hitchens



posted by: The Editors @ 10:01 am August 27, 2006



21 Comments

  1. It’s not a matter of who first tipped off Novak or how sweet and harmless the guy is, it’s how the information was used after that by people in office. There’s no question but that the Administration behaved vindictively — even childishly — about yellow cake revelations. And it’s that story — the crafting the the yellow cake deception — that we’ll probably hear more about. It’s a matter of character, and the character of our current leadership is lower ‘n’ a snake’s belly. If Fitzgerald wraps it up, the Dems will surely pick it up and run with it.

    Comment by PW — August 27, 2006 @ 11:26 am August 27, 2006


  2. “There’s no question but that the Administration behaved vindictively — even childishly — about yellow cake revelations.”

    There’s no question the administration made an entirely legitimate effort to refute the falsehoods being spread by Joe Wilson.

    Comment by The Editors — August 27, 2006 @ 12:00 pm August 27, 2006


  3. What falsehood was Joe Wilson spreading? Like the administration, you guys are
    crooks and liars.

    Comment by Rockie Balboa — August 27, 2006 @ 12:16 pm August 27, 2006


  4. Horsesh**. No yellowcake. No WMD. The neocons and their apologists
    have been a complete disaster for this country.

    Comment by neoconsuck — August 27, 2006 @ 12:16 pm August 27, 2006


  5. “No yellowcake. No WMD. The neocons and their apologists have been a complete disaster for this country.”

    And by “neocons” you must mean all the Democrats who insisted Saddam was a threat and had WMD.

    Comment by The Editors — August 27, 2006 @ 12:25 pm August 27, 2006


  6. “And by “neocons” you must mean all the Democrats who insisted Saddam was a threat and had WMD. ” I LOVE that excuse. Truman said “the buck stops here”. Neocons
    and their chickenhawk apologists whine “The democrats didn’t
    stop us! It’s Clinton’s fault! (Or his penis’ fault … whatever.”

    Hey, a-holes. Your guy was in charge the last five years. And
    your congress.You put that incompetent fart-joke-loving empty
    scion in charge of your ideology. ANd America is paying for it.
    You’re are in part responsible for the disasters he has created.Deal with it. Period.

    Comment by neoconsuck — August 27, 2006 @ 12:31 pm August 27, 2006


  7. Ooh, somebody’s not taking this well. Heh. Cognitive dissonance is hard to deal with.

    Comment by The Editors — August 27, 2006 @ 12:34 pm August 27, 2006


  8. “Cognitive dissonance is hard to deal with. ”

    Pot meet kettle.

    No Osama. No WMD. Iraq’s in a low-level civil war. Iran is strengthened and headed for a nuke. Can you honestly say Bush hasn’t been a disaster? That he and Cheney didn’t cherry pick the intelligence and smear anyone who said “Wait a minute, is invading Iraq a good idea?” Please. Heh, yourself. You have defended the indefensible so long, all you have left is grasping at straws. What a f**king disaster you have cheerled. I don’t have to damn your kind, history will take care of it.

    Comment by neoconsuck — August 27, 2006 @ 12:49 pm August 27, 2006


  9. Those on the adolescent angry left who accuse President Bush of lying about Iraq’s WMD programs are the ones dishonestly cherry-picking the intel after the fact. The liberation of Iraq is entirely defensible.

    You cannot with any credibility assert that Bush administration officials were lying when they said Iraq had WMD, but Clinton administration officials were not lying when they said the same things.

    Comment by The Editors — August 27, 2006 @ 1:30 pm August 27, 2006


  10. “You cannot with any credibility assert that Bush administration officials were lying when they said Iraq had WMD, but Clinton administration officials were not lying when they said the same things. ”

    Bush’s administration absolutely cherry-picked and misled the American people. Read “Fiasco” by Tom Ricks. They buried any dissent and smeared anyone who disagreed with them. They even did it after the war – look at what happened with the ‘bio-lab’ trailers, and even the latest stupidity by Santorum on the old mustard gas shells. You can try to blame Clinton all you want. But Clinton didn’t make the decision to invade Iraq. Bush did. You try desperately to pass the buck, but it doesn’t work. You blame Clinton, the Democrats, the State Department, the CIA, the media, … anyone you can, and ignore this administration’s own stupidity, bullying, naivete and incompetence. Bush is CinC, and no one can excuse him from that sacred duty. He made the decision, fully backed by a Congress controlled by his own party. He owns this disaster. It’s Bush’s. And it’s yours.

    Comment by neoconsuck — August 27, 2006 @ 1:51 pm August 27, 2006


  11. “It’s Bush’s. And it’s yours.”

    Exactly. No way around it.

    Comment by PW — August 27, 2006 @ 2:43 pm August 27, 2006


  12. You Bushies couldn’t tell the truth if your lives depended on it. Your “cognitive dissonance” is just more of your hype. You will need to get lost and stay lost ASAP.

    Comment by Rockie Balboa — August 27, 2006 @ 3:37 pm August 27, 2006


  13. If you are a Democrat because your great-grandfather, grand father, and father were Democrats, what would you be if they were swindlers…..I’d be a Republican!

    Comment by Rockie Balboa — August 27, 2006 @ 3:42 pm August 27, 2006


  14. Furthermore, you ought to rename your website to menopause.com

    Comment by Rockie Balboa — August 27, 2006 @ 3:50 pm August 27, 2006


  15. Rockie,

    Thank you for visiting and adding your intellectual heft to the debate. Your demonstration of the reasoning ability and maturity of many on the left is welcome.

    Comment by The Editors — August 27, 2006 @ 5:33 pm August 27, 2006


  16. The State Department is part of the Executive branch. Reasons to Invade Iraq:

    WMDs … un-found
    Saddam and 911 … not related (really no one ever said otherwise)
    Spreading Democracy … That sounds like a good slogan proud Americans will believe

    Comment by Fed-Up — August 30, 2006 @ 12:30 pm August 30, 2006


  17. Actually, there were 23 rationales for invading Iraq, as outlined in the bipartisan Joint Resolution to Authorize the Use of United States Armed Forces Against Iraq

    Comment by The Editors — August 30, 2006 @ 3:10 pm August 30, 2006


  18. That’s not what the book says. The book says that Armitage was Woodward’s source. Not the “first.” But why would anybody be surprised that a Republican doesn’t understand facts?

    Fact: You don’t know Armitage. Because Novak pronounces him “not a political gunslinger,” you believe it, and believe that it would make any difference.

    Armitage worked in the most partisan administration in the history of the country. Armitage was not against the war. He was just against the way that it was waged. To lose. I can make a case a dozen different ways that the Bush administration conspired to destroy Plame and Armitage can still be the most innocent of rubes. The fact is, a senior administration official admitted that the outing of Plame was revenge: http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn/A11208-2003Sep27?language=printer

    How come a zealot patriot such as yourself isn’t screaming for Armitage’s head? How come a “known gossip” was put in such a sensitive position, with top secret security clearance? Has it occured to you that Armitage is falling on his sword, letting himself be spun as a indiscreet gossip, in exchange for the justice department not prosecuting him?

    Comment by Faxon R. Psyde — August 30, 2006 @ 4:32 pm August 30, 2006


  19. Faxon,

    “Because Novak pronounces him “not a political gunslinger,” you believe it, and believe that it would make any difference.”

    Speaking of “facts”, you have no idea whether we know Armitage or not. And where did we ever say we believe Armitage is “not a political gunslinger”? You seem to have made up that “fact” out of thin air.

    The “admission” i.e. opinion of some anonymous “senior administration official” is not useful or relevant.

    We will gladly admit to the charge of being patriots however. Thank you for visiting and commenting.

    Comment by The Editors — August 30, 2006 @ 6:06 pm August 30, 2006


  20. It amazes me that first you would argue with these guys. Anyone who uses f-bombs in their argument is not rational. Second it appears from the facts that Armitage was the leakier and it’s yet another liberal media oversight. While I do agree that they have the right to complain over the war, I myself do not believe it is going well. But to disregard the fact that the dems were on board with the invasion of Iraq is just plain intellectually dishonest.

    Comment by Guy in the middle — September 1, 2006 @ 10:38 am September 1, 2006


  21. The “right” seems to intentiaonally miss the real issue– at least for me. Does this administration really beleif it’s own littany about the importance of the “War on Terror” and the paramount importance of protecting intellignce activities? I think the Plame matter shows they do not! The defense that it was not a crime because the leaker(s) did not know that her status was covert raises a question most of you do not want to address. If you are Rove, Libby or Armitage or Cheney and you are telling a reporter that so and so is with the CIA– dont you ask if
    this information should be kept secret before you leak? If you dont( apparently repeatly- 1 or 2 times for each of the trio of Rove, Libby and Armitage) doesnt this raise the inference that you dont really think the war on terror is important or that intelligence operations need to kept secret. Doesnt it at least show that W’s high ranking appointees are wreckless and lacking in the judgment a ordinary person would exercise? If you really beleif that the war on terror and secrecy is important enough to justify wiretaps, torture and secrecy– then do you really expect us to believe that high ranking officials who do not even ask about the issue of whether or not the information they are abourt to reveal about the CIA is or isnt supposed to be kept secret— are the only people who can keep us safe. I moving to the left because of the stupid arguments like this the right makes. I do not see even a modicum of good faith from the right on this.

    Comment by john henry — September 7, 2006 @ 2:45 pm September 7, 2006


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