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June 29, 2007

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Here's one more interesting thing. Note that Tatel puts "brought up" in quotes when discussing Novak's testimony. Clearly, he felt it important to include that piece of testimony--does the redacted passage provide evidence for why Novak's a lying piece of shit?

"it could lay the groundwork for an argument that Novak was lying when he said Armitage was his first source.."

BINGO!!!

I can't figure why Armitage, from the Powell camp, would put so much on the line to protect Rove, Libby and Cheney...

He and Libby may have had a closer "neocon" relationship than is overt, but it still stumps me how Armitage got tapped to take the rap...

It could simply be that more than one congressinal/military/industrial complex interest had a stake in making this futile war happen, Armitage was one of their top soldiers, and it may well prove that the final impetus for it all was the potential for profiteering, and Armitage was protecting his own stake somehow in guaranteeing the bloody gravy-train would begin.

Forget WMD's, forget regime change, forget protecting Israel, and don't even consider 9-11, when the final decision actually came to go to war, there was one abiding common interest that fueled it; war profits. They knew before it started, the only result would be chaos, and the only beneficiaries would be those profiteers.

Every one else gets to suffer somehow, for their benefit, including, along with millions of refugees and a million dead, the American taxpayer and their precious children.

What document is Armitage talking about that supposedly refers to Plame as a WMD managerial type?

Frank

The notes that went into the INR memo. It's a direct quote.

I think there's even more in there than Marcy does. I'm still convinced that Armitage thought he was set up. You don't go ballistic when you fuck up. You sit down, you put your head in your hands, and you say to yourself, "What have I done?" On the other hand, if you think somebody just set you up and totally fucked you over, you would go ballistic. When Armitage found out Novak was calling him his primary source, he wasn't just upset, he was PISSED. It's possible he was just angry at himself, but I think it's far more likely that he suspected someone had fed him the fact that "Wilson's wife" worked at the CIA while deliberately obscuring the fact that she was a covert agent, knowing that Armitage wouldn't be able to keep his mouth shut about such juicy "gossip".

Which brings me back to my original question: What document is Armitage referring to? Who wrote it? And who gave it to Armitage?

I think there's even more in there than Marcy does. I'm still convinced that Armitage thought he was set up. You don't go ballistic when you fuck up. You sit down, you put your head in your hands, and you say to yourself, "What have I done?" On the other hand, if you think somebody just set you up and totally fucked you over, you would go ballistic. When Armitage found out Novak was calling him his primary source, he wasn't just upset, he was PISSED. It's possible he was just angry at himself, but I think it's far more likely that he suspected someone had fed him the fact that "Wilson's wife" worked at the CIA while deliberately obscuring the fact that she was a covert agent, knowing that Armitage wouldn't be able to keep his mouth shut about such juicy "gossip".

Which brings me back to my original question: What document is Armitage referring to? Who wrote it? And who gave it to Armitage?

Sorry about the double post.

Okay, so the document in question is the Ford-to-Grossman memo, which calls Valerie Wilson a "WMD manager". Did Armitage really think that Valerie Wilson was just some secretary who walked around with a clipboard tallying up the nukes? Even for a Bush Administration offical, I'm having a hard time imagining someone this stupid.

Oh, and kudos to Fitz and the judges for pointing out that there's still quite a bit of information that's not out in the public domain yet, which is why there are still things that are redacted. The next logical step for Dow Jones/Wall Street Journal is to interview Armitage and Rove to find out what they haven't told us yet.

You'll forgive me if I don't hold my breath.

I have also thought for a long time that Rove was Novak's first source, and that he steered Novak to Armitage, and then used him as a potential fall guy. But Fitz must have been convinced by Armitage's behavior, going to the FBI, that it really was inadvertent and/or that he couldn't prove Armitage knew she was covert (and maybe he didn't). But Cheney and Libby surely did.

Cheney's hands are all over this, and I still think it was originally designed to steer everyone away from the Niger documents themselves and what Cheney may have known (and when) about the origin and use of the documents. After all, we are now finding out just how much of this power grab and war were in the works before 9/11. He is truly an evil amn.

F.P: Valerie Wilson is blonde, right? And attractive, right? And a woman, right? Then it must follow that she is a secretary.

Evil man. So evil he makes my fingers get mixed up.

I guess we ain't gonna see a certain skidmark around here for a couple of days, since all the skidmark's pet theories have been destroyed and all

I'm kinda sad that our resident troll is losing so much material here

but on the bright side, now the skidmark is gonna have to come up with a whole new set of talking points, which means the "Laugh" factor is gonna increase exponentally

I always said the wheels of justice grind slowly, but they grind exceedingly fine

look at the skidmark's arguments, all crumbled to dust

what's a skidmark to do ???

A few questions:

1. Could it really be true, as seemed to be the case, that Dow and AP are unaware that Fitzgerald's 8-27-04 affidavit has large chunks on Pincus, evidently bearing on Fleischer as well as Libby? For my money, that could be the most new stuff. In this connection, I wonder whether the Court might have directed Fitzgerald to unredact this stuff in light of what was disclosed at the trial, as they indicate he took a too-narrow view of what could and should now be disclosed.

2. But more immediately, is there yet any sign of the 8-27-04 affidavit on the public docket yet?

3. Yet more importantly, what about the 9-27-04 affidavit, whose existence I think has not been publicly known exactly until now (it's mentioned by Tatel in the newly unredacted portions of his opinion). I will personally be deeply unhappy if that thing has been sitting out there in some form all this time, just like the 8-27-04 affidavit, and we just missed it. But regardless, any sign of that now? It appears to focus on Cooper and Rove.

Jeff,

I'm not sure I understand what you're referring to on #1.

BUt yes, given Apuzzo's story, there was a lot that AP and WSJ were just fucking stupid as shit about.

I think the wapo and the ap were INTENTIONALLY "fucking stupid as shit"

come on folks

I could figure it out, and I ain't no rocket surgeon here

I'm on dialup, for pete's sake ...

and I was afraid of the innernets till 2003, so I ain't the swiftest poster in the tubez

you'd have to be a fricken moron to make that mistake ...

excuse me, I meant wsj, not wapo

but the statment applies to the wapo in some other areas, so this ain't an apology to the wapo, just the TNH crowd

freepatriot:
"what's a skidmark to do ???"

well it depends (heh) .. are the skids for love or money?


Maybe the Novak memoire now in distribution channels has set enough things in concrete that a new increment of document releases is easier, given all the other redacted and unpublished parts of the body of evidence going as far back as judge Tatel's span presiding over the case.

: )

I have got to confess I laughed at that exchange.

Let's assume the Downing Street Memo (23 July, 2002) is correct - 'the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy' in order to justify BushCo's pre-emptive invasion of Iraq.

2/19/02 - Wilson debunks the Iraq-Niger uranium claim.

September 9, 2002 Hadley and Rice receive the Niger documents from Pollari in an attempt to get them past a skeptical CIA.

September 12, 2003 Bush at UN calls for invasion of Iraq.

Somebody at State pushed out a fact sheet in mid-Dec 2002, that pointed "to efforts to procure uranium ore from Niger, this despite the alleged objections of WINPAC."

By 1/12/03, the uranium claim had been pulled from Negroponte's statement, and State expressed concerns (de-committed) to CIA that the Niger documents were forgeries.

January 28, 2003 - the 16 words in the SOTU.

Powell didn't use the claim in his 2/5/03 UN Security Council Briefing. The INR memo makes clear that after "considerable back and forth" consultation between State, CIA, IAEA and the British, due to CIA concerns that the Niger Documents were forgeries.

March 3, 2003 IAEA declares the Niger documents obvious fakes.

March 20, 2003 Bush Invades anyway.

---

Assuming Cheney and Bush were told that the Niger documents were forgeries both before and after the SOTU - then, they knowingly took us to War under false pretenses.

Doesn't it make sense that Cheney and Bush would be hyper-sensitive to word getting out that he and Bush disregarded multiple notices that the info was fake?

And, wouldn't Cheney have believed that Valerie was in a position to KNOW, due to her WINPAC status, not only that the Niger documents were forgeries, but also the history of the CIA and the intelligence community telling BushCo that the intelligence was fake?

Cheney's worst nightmare in the summer of '03, when no WMDs had been found, was that he would get CAUGHT for having circumvented and disregarded the intelligence community with his nefarious OSP/WHIG operation.

Cheney was AFRAID that Joe - who was going to the papers - would have his wife as a Source, and that she knew the Truth about how BushCo stampeded us into a pre-emptive war of choice.

That's why they went after her.

i agree radiofreewill... that is a pretty good redition of the unfolding of events in the sequence they came out.. they had to go after her as they knew how shaky there position was and felt the need to protect it for at least a period of time in and around this same area.

it would be nice if someone here were to recognize the efforts of Jason Leopold in all of this. Go back and read his stories, particularly the one's on Rove, pre the reported indictment and after, and it's clear Leopold was onto something. I think Joe Wilson said it best during his video interview with Leopold. In hindsight, I think leopold's reporting was totally on par with Waas' whether people believe that's laughable or not. History is starting to show that

this is an exposition i could actually follow,

thanks ew.

why continued redacted?

maybe protecting "innocent accused"

fitzgerald's big on extreme fairness (scrupulosity) in using prosecutorial power,

unlike the u.s. attorneys in wisconsin and alabama.

maybe tatel is protecting info that will continue this matter some time in the future,

maybe just acting on a respect for the executive offices involved.

Mimikatz at 18:55

I agree about Rove and Cheney both having fingerprints on the Plame outing.

Cheney is a skilled inside the bureaucracy guy, but the press was played with a great deal of finesse, which makes me think Rove set up that side of things just because he does it more.

Armitage and Scooter, and maybe others, were sent out to chum the waters in the press, with Rove administering the confirmation of the information?

So, the way I read it, Rove sold Armitage out?

radiofreewill (20:52)

that's a possibility i have long supported.

i think the white house target was plame and, thru her, the cia,

not joseph wilson.

the idea was to parenthetically intimidate the wilson family,

but, more importantly, the cia's top managers

and some of its analysts who were acting "inappropriately" analytical.

exposing plame really was a "nuclear option",

just the thing that cheney and addington would do (and assign to scooter - the little sucker - to execute).

"Assuming Cheney and Bush were told that the Niger documents were forgeries both before and after the SOTU - then, they knowingly took us to War under false pretenses."

RadioFreewill, I Iove this!

But taking us to war on "false pretenses" may not be legally actionable. Taking us to war using a "forgery" clearly is. I always try to use that word.

Bush & Cheney have bet their lives we can't prove they did it. Using a forgery to start a war is, after all, a hanging offense.

I think we can prove it. God bless merica.

Emptywheel, you wrote:

Probably, the paragraph immediately following the newly unsealed material makes some statement that says, "the Special Counsel could not prove that Armitage knew Plame was covert," which would remain redacted as a charging decision. (Or, if Tatel does suggest that Novak's description of Armitage as his source is questionable, the next paragraph would say that.)

I'm not arguing with you, I'm just not following you.

Why would either Fitz say something like that, or why would a judge write it? I would not expect anything in Fitz' affidavit or any of the judges' opinions to discuss charges that Fitz "could not prove," whoever is making that evaluation.

wonderful! wonderful. wonderful,
especially EW -- but also, one and
all assembled. . . this is an excellent
parsing of what is known, of ruling-out
what is no longer possible, and making
some very well-educated guesses about
what is left to-be-known. . .

i learn so much every time i look in here. . .

in fact, this thread had me ruminating,
after dinner, about what the timing of
tatel's re-publication of the earlier opinion
might tell us about the other opinion
likely now being crafted, on the keyboards
of the law-clerks for this same panel, in
this same case: scooter's expedited bail motion
.

that is -- i expect that this panel will deny mr.
libby bail while his appeals are prosecuted. i think
the timing of this re-issue is a clear signal to team
libby, and lawrence s. robbins, that this panel does
not feel ambiguous, in any way, about the conduct of
scooter libby. while this opinion does not touch on
mr. fitzgerald's right to bring the case, i also fore-
see a pretty strong sense of deference to his judgment,
particularly as to matters involving "fair play", for
lack of a more legally-precise term.

true, the panel was not asked, then, about the question
lawrence robbins and team libby now call a "close" one,
but i am beginning to get the sense -- just as with judge
reggie walton, earlier, at trial -- that the body-english
looks pretty ominous for mr. libby's chances of avoiding
federal prison-camp.

later: not to pile on, but add to libby's list of woes that
the supremes have decided to reconsider, and will now
grant certorari, in two of the "close gitmo"
cases
-- [this is exceedingly rare -- it last occurred
in 1968!] it sure seems like a point-of-inflection has
been reached -- and perhaps, breached -- in the conservative
circles now-no-longer-enthralled with the endless-parade-of-
bush-cheney-faux-gestapo tactics. . .

EW
"But there's something more there--and something in those two redacted pages must support the argument that there is something more."
Could it be AIPAC...Franklim handlers were pretty active at the OSP. CAn you connect the dots?

Jeff - A few points in response to your questions:

Fitzgerald's 8/27/04 Affidavit. There are two Case Numbers to which this affidavit pertained, as noted on the affidavit (per the version I have - which I probably downloaded through a link here). Judith Miller is one, the other name is redacted in the partially-released 2006 version of the affidavit. I think I deduced that Pincus had to be the other name, because both motions to quash were denied on 9/9/04, and Walter Pincus gave a deposition on 9/15/04 (by which time Kessler, Russert, and Cooper re Libby had all testified as well). Also, per Page 34 of the affidavit (first paragraph), it seems clear that a Washington Post reporter is involved, in addition to Miller. [Note, though, that Pincus recently indicated to PBS's NewsHour in an interview that he had not moved to quash his Plame investigation subpoena - but there's a little wiggle room in there due to imprecision I think. Pincus was referring to the Lee espionage case he was caught up in, together with this one, and while he may not have moved to quash in Lee's case, in the Plame case if he did in fact move to quash (under seal), he subsequently quickly dropped the fight when the motion was denied. When speaking quickly of the two cases together, the effect of no successful motion to quash and thus no lengthy dispute about testimony seems to be more or less the gist of what he intended by his remarks.] I think emptywheel may also have deduced that Pincus is a part of the Miller affidavit, somewhere along the way. So the involvement of Pincus is all deduction at this point, as far as I know.

Fitzgerald's 9/27/04 Affidavit. The existence of this affidavit was made clear by the government's January response to December's 2nd Motion to Unseal by Dow Jones. I'm not sure that any earlier public court opinion referenced it by date, but that 1/07 government response did (the one cboldt obtained and put on-line). We know that the 9/2004 affidavit remained wholly sealed until Friday's ruling, because of this passage from the Circuit Court's 2/2006 decision on the 1st Motion to Unseal:

Because discrete portions of the eight pages can be redacted without doing violence to their meaning, today we unseal those portions containing grand jury matters that the special counsel confirmed in the indictment or that have been widely reported. (The formerly redacted materials appear in italics on pages 30-39.) On our own initiative, moreover, we also unseal parts of one of the special counsel’s affidavits upon which we relied in concluding that Miller’s evidence was critical to the grand jury investigation.

I don't know who originally dug up and put on-line the 8/27/04 affidavit - but unlike the Opinions themselves, the newly released version of that affidavit, and any version of the 9/27/04 affidavit, are considered filings (not part of the Opinion) and are thus not available from the Circuit Court via PACER, and as a result are not yet available on-line to my knowledge. Of course, we all know that Dow Jones/WSJ & the Associated Press will leap to remedy that situation for us just as quickly as they can, in continuing, humble service to "the public's right to know" - NOT...

At the very least, Bush and Cheney KNEW they had to find WMDs in Iraq, or the forged Niger documents could come back to haunt them, even though they had done their level best to confuse the issue with 'analysis' memos that masked the original sources - which were always the same Niger claim de-bunked by Wilson.

Bush and Cheney, in their hubris, had decided to gamble on finding the WMDs they were CERTAIN were there, by KNOWINGLY and DECEITFULLY using the forged documents, in one form or another, to do it.

Bush and Cheney were certain that once the WMDs were found, no one would ever question the forged basis for the Niger Uranium Claim in the 16 Words.

Joe Wilson, on the other hand, must have been dumbstruck when he heard the 16 Words - he knew they weren't true.

By the beginning of May '03, it had become pretty clear that there weren't any WMDs in Iraq, and the emerging question was 'How could the intel be so wrong?'

Joe went to the NYT and contributed anonymously to the Kristof Article - May 6th.

My contention - that's the day Cheney 'switched-on' and wanted to know who Kristoff's sources were. The June 10th INR (Grossman) Memo, initiated by a Libby request on May 29th, contains all the answers to a Cheney-like inquiry, and puts Joe with his CIA WINPAC/WMD-managerial type wife.

Cheney hatches a plan to 'get rid of Wilson and his wife' - smear her husband's Niger trip as a boondoggle that she arranged and get her kicked-out of her job in disgrace - before the truth comes out about the deceiful use of the forgeries.

But, first Cheney has to dissociate himself from having been the source of the Niger trip to begin with - that's the goal of the Pincus article in mid-June.

Joe's response is the New York Times Op-Ed - 'What I didn't find in Africa' - July 6th.

Cheney is angered and feeling the heat - his hasty response is to coordinate the July 8-10 Novak-Armitage-Rove and Libby-Cooper-Rove leaks that 'out' Valerie and smear the Wilsons.

Cheney had good reason to believe she was Covert (he was told she worked in CPD, which is almost entirely covert,) and he believed that she KNEW about the forged Niger documents. And he believed she would 'source' her info to her editorial-writing, war-critic husband - and bring down the lying House of Smirky Bush and Shooter Cheney. This is the reason Rove (wrongly) declared 'Wilson's wife is fair game' - Bush/Cheney/Rove/Libby all assumed that the Wilson's were as depraved and immoral as they were.

The way Cheney saw it, he had no choice but to attack and smear and obfuscate the people who could expose his evil manipulation of our Country into a War of Aggression by choice.


EW - Any thoughts on the mystery of why Armitage suddenly had a meeting with Novak after blowing him off for years? I think that's some part of the answer to this riddle.

pow wow

Thanks. The part about Pincus was what I was taking for granted as background to my comments about Fleischer. I figured out a while ago that Pincus was the other reporter dealt with in the 8-27-04 affidavit (though I will admit to being a little uneasy about what happened with Sanger, since we've learned he played more of a role in the substance of the investigation than we had realized.) I am quite interested in how that played out, because if you think about it - about what Pincus has said led him to testify, and what Fleischer himself testified to (specifically, denying that he had disclosed Plame's identity to Pincus), it's weird. From what we know, by the way, it looks like Pincus was in the midst of contesting his subpoena, and then worked out an arrangement once he learned that his source had identified himself to the prosecutor (though that's the weird part) - the notion being that between August 27, 2004 and September 9, Pincus figured out how to testify without getting an adverse ruling (and I don't think the other motion to quash was decided on on September 9).

As for 9-27-04, this is just the first time we've gotten any specificity about it, though I must have missed the precise date of it in the January filing. I do think the passage you quote is open to the interpretation that there were yet other affidavits related more directly to Miller that the judges were not unsealing back in early '06, though I think you're probably right that the 9-27-04 affidavit remained entirely under seal until now.

It's a good point about AP/Dow - they should really release the stuff.

Forget WMD's, forget regime change, forget protecting Israel, and don't even consider 9-11, when the final decision actually came to go to war, there was one abiding common interest that fueled it; war profits. They knew before it started, the only result would be chaos, and the only beneficiaries would be those profiteers.

I agree this is the impetus for the whole war. The book "The Arms of Krupp" lays out clearly what war is all about. MONEY for the big corps. All the rest is a means to an end.

Beldar

The point is, Tatel introduced the Armitage quotes--evidence from GJ testimony--for a clear reason. That reason is either to explain away Armitage's actions to show that Rove remains suspect for the Novak leak, or to suggest that Armitage wasn't one of the two sources Novak originally referrred to in July. In either case, there will need to be some followup to close the logic of the Armitage bits already introduced, to contextualize them and put them into context vis a vis Rove's actions.

censor

No, this is a narrow discussion focused only on Plame. AIPAC is not part of that discussion, I assure you.

Pow wow and Jeff

The non-specific reference to the late September affidavit is probably why AP was clueless that the balance of the AUgust affy was about Pincus. Which means we're not likely to get TOO much more on that.

That said, the timing of thta second affy is really curious--before Rove testified a third time, so it may well lack details about the Hadley email.

So the Circuit Court has decided to keep whether The Great Pumphead leaked into Turdblossom a secret. Some secret.

So many in the MSM seem to be joining the given name of the TGP with the words "secret" & "secrecy" - - one might imagine the MSM has indicted TGP for it. It seems so - - un-American. TGP deserves a trial.

The Great Pumphead stands accused of abusing SECRECY. Here are the verdicts on each count arguably relevant under Google Search:

[1] not revealed

Verdict: Not Guilty. When it comes to secrets the TGP is not so much a keeper as a pusher. The secrets of others are his Stock In Trade.

[2] clandestine: conducted with or marked by hidden aims or methods [as in] "clandestine intelligence operations”

Verdict: Not Guilty.

The WaPo series shows the aims & methods of the TGP are not so much clandestine as sneaky.

[3] unavowed

Verdict: Not Guilty.

TGP spews avowals & disavowals like a grizzled old baseball scout with a bag of sunflower seeds at Pioneer League game.

[4] communicated covertly [as in] "their secret signal was a wink"

Verdict: Scottish Verdict [not guilty by technicality]

It is not so much that the wink of the TGP is secret - - it is that the wink represents something more than a wink. The coded wink is grist for the Sneak’s mill.

[6] not expressed [as in] "secret (or private) thoughts"

Verdict: Not Guilty.

The secret or private thoughts of the TGP are openly expressed in his actions & in the words of his mental biographers - - like David Addington & Scootzie Libby.

[7] hidden: designed to elude detection; concealed [as in] "a hidden room or place of concealment such as a priest hole"

Verdict: Not Guilty.

There is an important distinction between the TGP & his place of concealment - - being the giant Mosler safe in the OVP: only one of them is organic.

[8] something which should remain hidden from others - - especially information that is not to be passed on [as in] "the combination to the safe was a secret" or "he tried to keep his drinking a secret"

Verdict: Not Guilty.

The second example warns of the dangers in mistaking the vice for the presidency.

[9] indulging only covertly; "a secret alcoholic"

Verdict: Not Guilty.

As above this seems better aimed at Bush 43. I mean - - it’s not as if TGP makes any secret of his myriad venal qualities.

[10] mysterious: having an import not apparent to the senses nor obvious to the intelligence;

Verdict: Scottish Verdict [not guilty on a technicality]

Paradoxically - - given the “not apparent…not obvious to the intelligence” clarifications - - it appears the TGP might only be Guilty in the eyes of Bush 43 - - the one person to whom the imports of the advice from the TGP is neither apparent nor obvious.

[11] mystery: something which baffles understanding & cannot be explained [as in] "it remains one of nature's secrets"

Verdict: See Count #10.

[12] the next to highest level of official classification for documents

Verdict: Hung jury.

Now if TGP were indicted for various High SNEAKY Crimes & SNEAKY Misdemeanors ... I suggest the outcome would be quite different.


"Bush and Cheney, in their hubris, had decided to gamble on finding the WMDs they were CERTAIN were there, by KNOWINGLY and DECEITFULLY using the forged documents, in one form or another, to do it."

I think they KNEW there were NO WMD's, the best evidence being that our troops were never instructed to look for them. They did not even know what a UN inspection seal looked like, which they would likely have been trained to spot if they were ordered to look for potential weapons manufacturing facilities...

ERemember that huge ammo dump we saw LIVE as our troops headed to Baghdad? And how it all disappeared as soon as our troops moved on?

We had one objective in mind when we attacked Baghdad, the Bush Cheney cabal wanted to secure the oil ministry and it's extended branches. Once the orders to atttack were given, there was no turning back, and all Cheney wanted when he outed Plame was to get that attack ordered...

Halliburton was raking in the cash before our soldiers even landed, and time will prove that was one of the other primary motivators to go to war, and WMD's were just a big lie that both Cheneyperpetrated and Bush perpetuated in his SOTU speech and Powell shamefully included in his UN speech.

THEY KNEW THERE WERE NO WMD'S, BUT THEY DID NOT WANT THE PUBLIC TO KNOW IT. The Plamne outing wasn't just to get Joe and Valerie, it was a warning to any other boy scouts and girl scouts in the CIA who might be struggling with their consciences; The message Cheney sent was simple and effective shut up or get outed...

Every motion, every act, every decision they made in the weeks leading up to the attack, was dedicated to getting us INTO this war, at any cost.

They were abviously more concerned about gettin in than gettin out.

And after reading all these opinions, (thanks, everyone, in the sum of your comments, there is more than one clarifying observation) it seems clear that Armitage was a dupe who got played by Rove and Cheney, probably because he WAS in the Powell Camp, not in the Cheney/Rumsfeld Camp, and because they knew he had a loose tongue.

It just makes sense they would take advantage of the likelihood Armitage would spill something he didn't realize was classified, then all the rest of them could claim they heard it from the media (Novak) who heard it from "someone close to the administration" (Armitage).

It is the very same closed-loop tactic that Scooter used in his "Russert told me" strategy; leak something profusely to a gaggle of media hacks, then claim you originally heard it from one of the media hacks. In this Armitage case, they leaked to a known loudmouth who spewed it to a neocon journalist. Then they all claimed they first heard about it from Novak's column.

Armitage was pissed because he knew he'd been pawned by Rove and Cheney.

But when the Dems quite unexpectedly got the gavel and oversight was focused inward, the jig was up, and Fitz busted-up their "who's on first" circle-jerk by convicting Libby for lying to cover up that deceptive loop.

Armitage was their designated dupe. No wonder he was mad when he found out how the loop was playing out.

Emptywheel, thanks very much for the prompt and patient response to my questioning comment.

I may be coming at this from so radically different a mindset that I'm still missing your logic, or we may have different assumptions about what circuit judges normally do and don't do in their opinions.

You seem to me to be saying that Judge Tatel had an agenda, and that he was trying to signal things that he couldn't quite say, with the expectation that people would be looking for his signals and trying to decipher them. Am I misunderstanding?

More specifically, you write, "Tatel introduced the Armitage quotes — evidence from GJ testimony — for a clear reason." I agree that he must have had a reason for including the quotes. But my assumption is that it was to help explain the background facts more thoroughly, so that readers could understand the contest for his thumbs-up or thumbs-down ruling on whether to affirm or reverse Judge Hogan's decision on the contempt citations — and nothing more.

Why would Judge Tatel either "explain away Armitage's actions to show that Rove remains suspect for the Novak leak," or "suggest that Armitage wasn't one of the two sources Novak originally referred to in July"? I would certainly agree that these are interesting questions that may snag the interest of pundits and theorists. But why would Judge Tatel need to do either of those things as part of explaining his ruling that Miller couldn't continue to defy the grand jury subpoena?

I appreciate your willingness to humor me. These really aren't smart-ass rhetorical questions; I respect your depth of knowledge about the facts of the case, and I really am trying to figure out if I'm missing something important here. Thanks in advance.

I'm with mimikatz and EH - Rove punked Armitage in a pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey play with his old buddy Novak.

Perhaps the Grossman Memo was part of an intentional plan by Cheney to 'plant' the seeds of the Wilson Smear Project on Armitage, who would then 'gossip' it to Woodward - who would then relay it on to the WH Staff. And, viola, "I heard it from a reporter," from Rove and Libby.

So, how do they do it? Cheney secretly works through Duberstein(?) via Libby(?) to tell Armitage to take a call/give an interview from Novak. Rove calls Novak, loads him with context and questions, and aims him at Armitage. Novak gets the info he needs from (punks) Armitage and calls Rove to confirm that he has it - tail-pinned-on-the-donkey. A routine press-leak op by Rove, and Novak's piece was ready to go!

Fitz knows Armitage was punked, but Libby won't tell the truth about the Cheney-to-Armitage "take that call" arc. It's just unbelievable that on the very morning that Rove says at the staff meeting that 'we have to get the word out on Wilson' - Armitage takes an afternoon interview with Novak. For two years prior, Armitage wouldn't even return Novak's calls.

Cheney opened Armitage's door to Novak, without Armitage realizing what was happening, and Libby won't 'fess up to it.

Everybody was in on the punking of poor Armitage!

On Tatel's references to Armitage ...

He talks of Armitage in order to make the discussion factually "complete." Notice he says that the fact Armitage was a source to Novak doesn't mean that Rove couldn't be too. At this point, it appears Fitzgerald was after Rove the same way he was after Libby.

And a minor nit, the Armitage/Rove/Novak information impinges the testimony of Cooper, not Miller. There is a third case wrapped up in this, IIRC, that case is a subpoena to the NYT.

Beldar (and this responds to your point, too, cboldt):

I'm not accusing Tatel of bias. I'm assuming Tatel is working with logic. And I'm arguing that anything for which he provides clear evidence must be there for a logical reason. And I agree with cboldt that one possible reason why he introduces Armitage is to make his discussion complete--to explain his decision for precisely the reason it is being used now, to justify the pursuit of Rove in spite of Armitage's clear involvement. But he doesn't say that in this passage. So he presumably says it in the following passage, if that's what he in fact says. Without some context, these Armitage details are just floating, extraneous details.

cboldt

I don't understand your nit. When I said this:

So the redactions must logically bridge from Rove's involvement in the Novak article to his leak to Cooper.

I think I clearly made the point that the redacted information pertained to Cooper--and, more generally, the case that Rove was lying (that is, about Novak, too).

The only way I mention Judy in here, at all, is to show how Tatel is working, and to make the case that Tatel is not randomly introducing evidence from the grand jury testimony that is unrelated to the argument that Libby may have perjured wrt Judy and Rove wrt Cooper.

Also, I don't understand your reference to the NYT. The subpoena to the NYT had long ago been dropped based on the NYT's assurance they had nothing responsive to the subpoena. Or is there a subpoena I'm not aware of?

My "Cooper nit" was a response to beldar's "But why would Judge Tatel need to do either of those things [both involving Armitage] as part of explaining his ruling that Miller couldn't continue to defy the grand jury subpoena?"

The Circuit Court case here (to unseal the record) asks to unseal what is three cases, consolidated. One of those three is v. Miller, another is v. Cooper, and I don't recall what the third is - if I ever even knew. 04-3138, 04-3139 and 04-3140 at the Circuit level, all three styled "Sealed v Sealed" below: 1-04-mc-407, 1-04-mc-460 and 1-04-mc-461.

I don't think there is anything of substaintive interest in that third subpoena, that isn't reflected in the material presently visible to the public. I just mentioned it as potentially another source for Circuit Court discussion that is part of the record, but not useful for drawing any inference.

-- or to suggest that Armitage wasn't one of the two sources Novak originally referrred --

Well, Tatel didn't introduce it for that reason, he seems to accept Armitage as a Novak source.

uncontradicted testimony indicates that Novak first learned Wilson's wife's place of employment during a meeting on July 8 with Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage (see 8/27/04 Aff. at 18), Novak said in grand jury testimony that he confirmed Plame's employment with Rove

I think what's going on, the "talking past each other" in the comment section here, results from the difference between viewing the case as a leak case, and viewing it as a false statements case.

EW's comments go toward the need for logic in order to get to the bottom of a leak case. Tatel's comments aren't limited to a "solve the leak case" use of the evidence that Fitzgerald is trying to obtain, and in fact, Tatel's comments at this point in the opinion are on the point of "a witness may be lying to investigators and/or the grand jury."

cboldt

That third one is probably the Time subpoena, don't you think?

Also, I agree (as I said in the last post) that Tatel accepts Armitage as a source, but note even in that passage, he describes Armitage as a source for, "Wilson's wife's place of employment." Even Novak's column presents the "operative" claim in a separate, unsourced sentence from the Plame suggested Wilson information. In any case, several things suggest he's suspicious of the story thus far told, which he probably elaborates on in the redacted section to get to the perjury charge (and to provide support for his claim that this perjury is so problematic).

Also cboldt

I think your statement about leak case v. perjury misrepresents my point entirely.

What we see unredacted pertains only to a leak case. I've made very clear in this post that the redacted portion needs to get you to a perjury case. I'm arguing that there is no reason to introduce the Armitage evidence unless it supports the perjury case. So there must be Armitage stuff in the still-redacted section, and it must explain why the visible Armitage stuff supports a case for perjury.

If you wanted to prevent a news source from publishing damning info - like the history of the WMD claims according to the NYT - one way to do it would be to 'leak' classified info to the news source to 'dirty' them, and then secretly injunct them from publishing in the name of National Security.

Later on, say after the election, you might then 'let' that news source 'break' a major national security story...if they've been good.

-- What we see unredacted pertains only to a leak case. --

I see it as pertaining not only to a leak case, but also to a perjury case. The issue before Tatel is whether the government is entitled to the evidence. At any rate, I didn't mean to misrepresent your point of view. I was springing from the first part (the part before "In either case") of your ...

The point is, Tatel introduced the Armitage quotes--evidence from GJ testimony--for a clear reason. That reason is either to explain away Armitage's actions to show that Rove remains suspect for the Novak leak, or to suggest that Armitage wasn't one of the two sources Novak originally referred to in July. In either case, there will need to be some followup to close the logic of the Armitage bits already introduced, to contextualize them and put them into context vis a vis Rove's actions.

in light of beldar's inquiry as to how that was relevant to compelling testimony, and suggesting that perhaps a point that would facilitate making your point clear would be to consider the difference between viewing Tatel as addressing a leak case, vs. Tatel addressing a false statements/perjury case.

More Armitage/Duberstein info:

http://www.tomdispatch.com/post/129554/de_la_vega_debunking_the_armitage_story

Marcy, is any of this suggesting a future indictment of Rove for perjury, or did Rove "cleanse" himself via one of those repeat visits to Fitz during which he "reshaped" his testimony?

Does this new info point the way to any other possible indictments?

Thanks for your patience with my questions, emptywheel and cboldt. I still think you're boxing with shadows and reflections of shadows, but you've studied them longer and harder than I have, and perhaps they have substance that I'm missing. I come back to emptywheel's original statement:

the paragraph immediately following the newly unsealed material makes some statement that says, "the Special Counsel could not prove that Armitage knew Plame was covert," which would remain redacted as a charging decision ....

And I still don't have a clue how that could be likely. Maybe that is indeed the basis for Fitz decision not to seek an indictment against Armitage. Let's assume that, for purposes of argument. Why would Fitz be talking about that — explaining why he hadn't yet indicted Armitage, or explaining why he wasn't trying to get more evidence so he could decide whether to indict Armitage — as part of trying to get the DC Circuit to compel Cooper's, Time Inc.'s, or Miller's further testimony (which Fitz says he needs for charging decisions on Libby and Rove)?

I just don't think Fitz would be talking his charging decisions, past or future, on Armitage to the D.C. Circuit. And I certainly don't think those appellate judges would be bringing that up on their own. So I don't think anything in the still-redacted portion of Tatel's opinion is at all likely to discuss the rationale behind Fitz' charging decision (whatever it was, and whenever it played out) for Armitage.

Mauimom: None of this is "new info" to Fitz. He had it all in hand when he announced the Libby indictment and simultaneously announced that he didn't anticipate any others. None of this, in other words, suggests a future indictment of Rove for perjury.

Beldar,

yet the people of this blog claim that Libby, Rove, and Cheney did know Plame was covert but Fitzgerald also didn't charge them.

This is the thrust of my argument that Plame might have been covert as most CIA employees are but that Plame wasn't covert or at least not covert enough for the IIPA, CIPA "Super Covert" classification to be made. (My quotes)

Then again maybe LIbby, Rove, and Cheney didn't think she was in the super classification.

That could be enough.

Libby, Rove, and Cheney "didn't think" she was a NOC? Hunh?

As I said, a significant portion of this redacted space must lay out Rove's testimony about Cooper. It probably tells how Rove initially claimed he never spoke to Cooper, and then, just as Cooper was subpoenaed a second time, Rove magically found the email he wrote to Hadley reminding himself that he had, in fact, spoken to Cooper. It would be positively delicious if Fitzgerald also described the circumstances regarding the discovery of the email--particularly if that email was not disclosed in response to the initial subpoenas. Generally, though, this section would rehearse all of the reasons to believe Rove had lied in grand jury testimony about Cooper.

Hmm, in addition to being delicious, wouldn't it be positively prescient? The court had available to them Fitzgerald's affidavits from Aug and Sept of 2004 - how did they get Cooper and Rove evidence from October 2004 GJ testimony?

FWIW, some semi-recent story made it clear that the second subpoena to Cooper was on a rare no-name basis, i.e., it did not cite Rove specifically (his first subpoena did cite only Libby).

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