Oct 28 2005
Yes, I will probably live blog the news conference at 2:00 PM – but this is just silly to spend a lot of time on. Check back here, I will append it to this post. No promises on depth of analysis, I am truly stunned and how lame this is.
Keep scrolling – I am adding to the end
Grand Jurors are now in the courtroom with judge and special prosecutor and Judge (Robinson). Waiting on verbal news first. Reuters is reporting Libby was indicted on obstruction of justice, false statement, perjury. This being backed by AP and FOX News.
Now we need to see what it was all about. This is truly a lead balloon indictment. This it?
More to come.
Perjury is about his testimony with Cooper and his rec0llection that is what he recalled NEARLY A YEAR LATER!
Geez, what a crock. And what about Wilson’s deliberate lies!!
Nothing. Wilson concocts stories and plants them anonymously in the press, tipping his hand he knew about classified material (the Niger Forgeries) and he is let go?
Fitzgerald is an idiot. This is not justice. This is a farce. Libby lied and Wilson did what?
Sandy Bergler comes rushing back to mind.
Nothing about outing Plame – which means she was outed before Libby. Nothing on Rove.
Nothing here folks, move along, move along…..
5 counts because Libby’s story adjusted over time (was it refined over time?). One count: Libby told the FBI that he told Cooper that reporters were telling him about Plame. They say that is not true. Funny thing is – it could be true! Libby could have told Cooper he was hearing it from reporters (that is consistent with Cooper’s take) and not tell Cooper he heard it also from inside the administration. These are incredibly weak charges.
I still cannot believe this is all there is? Did I say lead balloon today??
FOX News reporting Fitzgerald was going indict Rove but some clarification was provided by his lawyer. Well, folks. You can follow this yourselves, but it the media is really hyping it beyond belief. Remember: Innocent until proven guilty.
Libby resigns – for telling the press the truth about lies they printed. Is this for real? I said what this would mean if Fitzgerald indicted a ham sandwich. He can now go down in history as the man who indicted people for telling the truth! He has made a mockery of our justice system and tried to criminalize political debate.
Folks, the grand jury indicted Libby for not telling the PRESS he learned of Valerie’s job at the CIA from administration officials. Now did Libby say to the grand jury – I only heard about Valerie from the press? If so, he was caught in a lie or inability to recall the sequence of events over a week’s period, but nearly a year later.
The indictment is finally out. Strangely, Fitzgerald idenitifies Wilson’s lie which betrayed his knowledge of classified material – 8 months after his trip:
On May 6, 2003, the New York Times published a column by Nicholas Kristof which disputed the accuracy of the â€œsixteen wordsâ€ in the State of the Union address. The column reported that, following a request from the Vice Presidentâ€™s office for an investigation of allegations that Iraq sought to buy uranium from Niger, an unnamed former ambassador was sent on a trip to Niger in 2002 to investigate the allegations. According to the column, the ambassador reported back to the CIA and State Department in early 2002 that the allegations were unequivocally wrong and based on forged documents.
Why didn’t Fitzgerald investigate this leak of classified information to Wilson and to the Press? And clearly there were reporters calling to confirm details at that time
Prior to June 12, 2003, Washington Post reporter Walter Pincus contacted the Office of the Vice President in connection with a story he was writing about Wilsonâ€™s trip. LIBBY participated in discussions in the Office of the Vice President concerning how to respond to Pincus.
So up until then all sorts of information is coming to Libby that Valerie was Joe’s husband who worked at the CIA (you can see a list of contacts in the document). Then this
On or about June 12, 2003, LIBBY was advised by the Vice President of the United States that Wilsonâ€™s wife worked at the Central Intelligence Agency in the Counterproliferation Division. LIBBY understood that the Vice President had learned this information from the CIA.
Advised again? This makes no sense. But at least we understand the timeline perfectly now. Kristof teams up with the Wilsons to write the first article – containing classified informaion on methods, sources and results of the Niger trip, and then also the classified information Wilson should not have known about the Niger documents which surface 8 days later. Somehow all this snuck by Fitzgerald who was concerned about leaking of classified information??? The guy obviously was not interested in discovering the truth – he had agenda.
I am taking a break for Pat’s statement:
Valerie was a classified CIA officer and was not well known. Well, was it known outside the WH?
And that is all the background. He has nothing on whether the press knew ahead of time. He is another Inspector Clouseau.
The guy is nervous and sounds like he knows this is a joke. Did I say lead balloon again?
He is babbling and trying to defend his results. He knows this is bogus. He wants us to believe it is important for everyone who testifies to be honest. So were the Wilson’s honest Pat? We know he lied in May, June and July!
Pat has nothing. The problem Pat has is there has been, and still is, doubt about whether Valerie sent Wilson! The Wilson’s and there defenders claimed up until today (when they must change their toon of course) Valerie was not critical to Joe getting the assignment. Now when Libby testifies about Valerie and not being sure – is he testifying about her job at the CIA or her role in Wilson getting the job! Read these statements by Libby and recall his focus is on who sent Wilson. If no one told him that Wilson was undercover – he could care less about her job.
Let’s go back to the indictment:
Shortly after publication of the article in The New Republic, LIBBY spoke by telephone with his then Principal Deputy and discussed the article. That official asked LIBBY whether information about Wilsonâ€™s trip could be shared with the press to rebut the allegations that the Vice President had sent Wilson. LIBBY responded that there would be complications at the CIA in disclosing that information publicly, and that he could not discuss the matter on a non-secure telephone line.
Note that the complications are not whether they can point to Valerie’s job – we don’t know what they are. Fitzgerald just throws out some vague reference.
On or about June 23, 2003, LIBBY met with New York Times reporter Judith Miller. During this meeting LIBBY was critical of the CIA, and disparaged what he termed â€œselective leakingâ€ by the CIA concerning intelligence matters. In discussing the CIAâ€™s handling of Wilsonâ€™s trip to Niger, LIBBY informed her that Wilsonâ€™s wife might work at a bureau of the CIA.
Notice Fitzgerald never states that Libby told Miller Wilson’s name. This is the notoriouss ‘clandestine guy’ meeting. Miller’s notes say ‘Wilson’ but I have yet to see anywhere Miller state Libby told her ‘Joe Wilson’. Also note that all he says is the wife works somewhere in the CIA. Up to this point Fitzgerald has not demonstrated Libby knew or had been warned that Valerie was under cover. Not once. It is also disturbing that Fitzgerald follows the media-Wilson line without any doubt with regards to its veracity.
In fact, Fitzgerald has exculpatory information in the indictment
Also on or about July 8, 2003, LIBBY met with the Counsel to the Vice President in an anteroom outside the Vice Presidentâ€™s Office. During their brief conversation, LIBBY asked the Counsel to the Vice President, in sum and substance, what paperwork there would be at the CIA if an employeeâ€™s spouse undertook an overseas trip.
So, at this late date and after two of the discussions with the press that are the basis of the indictments, Libby is still trying to get details on the trip and Valeries role. Sorry Pat, that illustrates a lack of firm knowledge when talking to reporters. Was Libby checking what repoerters were telling him? So far nothing about Plame’s job. Libby seems completely focused on her role in getting the trip set up for Joe.
And as far as telling Novak -wrong. Novak told an official who told Libby. Busted Pat
On or about July 10 or July 11, 2003, LIBBY spoke to a senior official in the White House (â€œOfficial Aâ€) who advised LIBBY of a conversation Official A had earlier that week with columnist Robert Novak in which Wilsonâ€™s wife was discussed as a CIA employee involved in Wilsonâ€™s trip. LIBBY was advised by Official A that Novak would be writing a story about Wilsonâ€™s wife.
In this instance, it is clear Novak told Libby via a conduit. So Libby was not Novak’s source. This indictment is a sad joke at that. Same with Cooper, he told Libby – not vise versa
On or about July 12, 2003, in the afternoon, LIBBY spoke by telephone to Cooper, who asked whether LIBBY had heard that Wilsonâ€™s wife was involved in sending Wilson on the trip to Niger. LIBBY confirmed to Cooper, without elaboration or qualification, that he had heard this information too.
The first indictment is a he said, she said – and Fitzgerald simply decided to believe Russtert and not Libby
During a conversation with Tim Russert of NBC News on July 10 or 11,
2003, Russert asked LIBBY if LIBBY was aware that Wilsonâ€™s wife worked
for the CIA. LIBBY responded to Russert that he did not know that, and
Russert replied that all the reporters knew it. LIBBY was surprised by this
statement because, while speaking with Russert, LIBBY did not recall that
he previously had learned about Wilsonâ€™s wifeâ€™s employment from the Vice
He did not state that he heard the news about Valerie Plame. Why? Because he was discussing whether he leaked it to Russert. Russert claims (and Fitzgerald claims from there) that Wilson’s wife was not discussed. Russert’s statement is actually much narrower than that. Fitzgerald may not have thought to press the issue. But why would Libby say anything about knowing the information ahead of time when all he was saying he did not tell Russert, he recalls Russert telling him (like Cooper)?
During a conversation with Matthew Cooper of Time magazine on or about
July 12, 2003, LIBBY told Cooper that reporters were telling the
administration that Wilsonâ€™s wife worked for the CIA, but that LIBBY did
not know if this was true;
This is 100% accurate rergarding who told whom what (not in details of course). libby did allude that ‘heard that too’, but never told Cooper whether it was true. Libby did not say he did not know it was true at the time, he said he told Cooper this. This is simply astoundingly poor work on the prosecutor’s side. Is Fitzgerald indicting LIbby for not telling the press the truth???? Folks, this is October and November of 2003 – months after the events. And anyone want to lay odds this is cherry picked! That someplace else Libby admits the WH was looking into Joe Wilson and how he got the trip, and the fact he talked to the CIA. If Libby admitted to all this then there is no false statement. this statement is about his recollections with reporters and what he told them.
Let’s go to Grand Jury testimony (now a year after the events)
i. Russert asked LIBBY if LIBBY knew that Wilsonâ€™s wife worked for
the CIA, and told LIBBY that all the reporters knew it; and
ii. At the time of this conversation, LIBBY was surprised to hear that
Wilsonâ€™s wife worked for the CIA;
I would like to see the actual testimony. Did Libby say he was surprised at the time at this news, or surprised to hear Russert say it at the time. The first version could be faulty memory on the sequence of events. The second one would be an honest and accurate statement, to be surprised so many in the press knew.
Now the Mathew Cooper item – and folks Fitzgerald is really stretching here. He has applied his mind reading powers:
LIBBY did not advise Matthew Cooper, on or about July 12, 2003, that
LIBBY had heard other reporters were saying that Wilsonâ€™s wife worked for the CIA, nor did LIBBY advise him that LIBBY did not know whether this assertion was true; rather, LIBBY confirmed to Cooper, without qualification, that LIBBY had heard that Wilsonâ€™s wife worked at the CIA; and…
This is more he said, she said. I am just not understanding why Fitzgerald is taking the word of Matt Cooper as gospel here.
Oh well. Libby can pay for his own lawyers and will probably be able to win this in court since there is no smoking gun and a lot of innuendo holding this together.
Enjoy the weekend all!