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March 02, 2006


Okay never mind, still not sure which font it is. It doesn't look like either to me because neither match perfectly.


I think you're not going to get an overlay match, because this document was scanned as a picture after it was redacted. The reason I say TNR 12 point is because all the spacing lines up properly, and it is the same spacing/font Fitzgerald has used in the past. (Thank god he's even using TNR, rather than Courier; but Palatino is probably too fancy for a lawyer).

But in any case, the method can't be exact because of the scanning distortion (same problem we had with the 60 minutes doc, effectively). Close enough to rough estimate the names, but not enough to figure out exactly, I think.

I agree EmptyWheel. And I also have to agree that 'Richard Armitage' does seem to fit a lot of the spaces. However not maybe all of them- not sure. Don't forget, Fitz thows in a "Mr." occasionally, such as 'Mr. Armitage' instead of 'Richard Armitage', so that may effect the letter count. If you do that, then 'Mr. Clarke' seems to fit in some. But still, Armitage fits in more often- so I guess for now Armitage has a leg up.

For the moment agreeing that it is Armitage who is the source for Bob Woodward and Robert Novak, let me ask again. Can anyone give a plausable reason why Novak would be so certain that Bush knows the identity of Armitage as the person who leaked to Novak and Woodward (or is totally amazed that Bush doesn't know), as Novak has stated emphatically?

Armitage is not Mr. X, even though his name fits. I have to admit that I've been wrong on my theory (Woodward's source is not Bush or Cheney). Here are the key paragraphs:

39. The first redaction is almost certainly two last names "xlastname and Rove". The second redaction is probably just an error. I'm fairly certain that "(Karl Rove)" goes there with "(Karl" at the end of the line and "Rove)" at the beginning of the next line (where the redaction is indicated).

43. The first redaction is probably the last name of Mr. X. You can theorize other possibilities, but the space is exactly the same size as the other places where Mr. X's last name is.

43. The second redaction (the long one) is impossible to discern (at least for me).

43. The third and fourth redactions are exactly the same length. This is the strongest typographically indication that Novak and Woodward's source are the same (Mr. X).

46. The redactions in the Woodward section. This one took me a while to figure out. I believe the document originally said:
source, xlastname, with xlastname's name redacted. That is, "name redacted" is part of the text. For those following along at home, be sure to use Word's smart quote, not an ASCII single quote there.

52. This redaction is important because it almost certainly has to be "xfirstname xlastname" for Word's line splitting rules to work. Mr. X's first name is, therefore, fairly long. It can't be Dick or Bob, it could be Richard or Robert.

Actually, if I'm not mistaken, even short names or "Mr." will trigger the soft return for these 8-letter names. At least Ari Fleischer (or Mr. anyofthese) works for me.

Oops. Slight correction. The first redaction in paragraph 43 is "Mr. xlastname". I meant to say that is the same length as xlastname plus "Mr.".

Oops, I should clarify. I was talking about paragraph 52.

I've been using that one as a start because there is almost no circumstance (except "George / W. Bush") where the possible combinations wouldn't leave a last name, alone, on the following line. So it gets us to a last name with no prefix, which we can then test at 43.

Also, the paragraph at 39 could read something like "except as SAOs" (that is, qualifying the statement about how Novak has identified sources, rather than actually naming them) but I can't think of anything plausible in that line.

and emptywheel is correct. It's the length of the last name that causes the line wrap. Sorry, I've been staring at this too long.

Can anyone give a plausable reason why Novak would be so certain that Bush knows the identity of Armitage ...

Maybe Rove told Novak that Bush knew about leaker X. Or I guess, more logically, Novak told Rove first about leaker X, and then Rove told Novak later that Rove told Bush about leaker X.

Can anyone give a plausable reason why Novak would be so certain that Bush knows the identity of X?

Because at some point Bush told him that he knows who it is, or X told Novak that Bush knows?

Another short technical note. Upthread, somebody asked why you can copy and paste text from this pdf file when it is obviously an image. This is a feature of Acrobat. Check out this article: http://www.planetpdf.com/enterprise/article.asp?contentid=6860&ra

William, how exactly is "exactly the same length" (para. 43)? Because "Armitage" and "Gonzales" are not exactly the same length (Armitage is slightly longer). When I do the permutations, I actually get the best typographical fit so far for 43 with Armitage as Woodward's source and Gonzales as Novak's.


Good question. I'm measuring them on-screen in a graphics tool by the number of pixels. The measurement is complicated by the fact that the last redaction is in parentheses and the left parenthesis is partially redacted. Taking that into account, the difference in length is less than the margin of error for distortion inherent in this process. I doubt we'll be able to decide on the typographic evidence whether Armitage or Gonzales fits better (but I'm open to the possibility). We have to take into account all the available evidence, particularly the content of paragraph 43 which suggests there is one source for both men and the published statements of both about their source(s). At this point, I think Gonzales should be our prime suspect.

Hmmm... Now this is going to sound a little obscure, but KM's question got me looking at that left parenthesis. If you blow that image up, you'll notice how the top has been whited out. This would suggest that the first letter of Mr. X's name is much more likely to be an F or a G than an A. In Times New Roman, the top of an upper case A would be much further away from the top of the parenthesis than an F or G.

You know, I think a 9 letter word fits much better in the spaces than an 8 letter word. In that case, Fleischer would be the only nine letter one I can think of.

Isn't Fleischer a Democrat? If so that would make him the only non Republican of the suspects, and so a "non partisan gunslinger", which fits in with Sylvia's theory. Also didn't Fleischer read the memo mentioning Plame's covert status originally? And also Fleischer resigned early on in this but no one else of the suspects seems to have felt the pressure to resign. So maybe they realised early on what Fleischer had done and asked him to leave.
This might explain why Novak thinks Bush would know who it is. Bush said whoever did it would be fired and Fleischer is gone. Fleischer did deny it but since he no longer works for the administration there are no repercussions for denying it.
Also Fleischer being WH press secretary was talking to journalists all the time. Woodward also referred to X as if he was non partisan, and Fleischer is the only non partisan of the suspects.
Usually when someone was investigated by Fitz their lawyer would make off the record statements, or it was obvious who was suspected. But no one has looked worried about being accused of being X, nor leaked any preemptive defenses. Fleischer having left the WH could avoid being asked and questions or looking stressed.

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