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Thursday, November 17, 2005


woodward enters the fray

the investigation of the plame affair took an unexpected turn yesterday, as washington post editor bob woodward was called to testify that, unbeknownst to anyone, he had learned of plame's undercover identity from a different (as yet unnamed) source prior to scooter libby's indiscretion of that same information with judith miller.

how this new revelation may affect the fitzgerald investigation is impossible to say. who the unnamed source may be will determine much. for some, it calls woodward's credibility into question -- the hero of watergate, in the process of cultivating insider contacts with the bush administration in order to write lucrative books, suddenly can be painted as a rather unobjective figure with post reporter walter pincus essentially saying that woodward isn't really telling the truth. however, it should not do much to affect the prosecution of libby, who was indicted under perjury charges.

but, as kevin drum has noted, the multiplicity of leaks relating to plame -- now at least five, possibly six -- is almost undeniably the result of an administration plan. the odds of a good soldier like libby going out on a limb without his overseer cheney's approval was always small; likewise with rove and his political owner, president bush. the trick would be establishing proof of such a criminal conspiracy within the white house -- an uneviable and perhaps impossible task for fitzgerald.

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