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March 30, 2006


Wow. I'm going to have to read this one again (and, probably, again) before it really sinks in. Thanks for the update.

Typo patrol: (1) "he seemed to believe that Libby was definitely Libby's source"; (2) "goddamn Niger uranium down our through even though our own intelligence"

Great new Waas article. The upshot: Bush knew and well knew there were major doubts about the aluminum tubes, and the whole Niger business functioned in part as heated distraction from that fact in July 2003. Bush's own personal one-page summary of the now-infamous October 2002 NIE (as well as other sources Bush availed himself of) acknowledged the doubts on the aluminum tubes, and that had to be kept underwraps until after the 2004 elections. Presidential knowledge was the real problem, and Bush didn't know about the doubts about the Niger uranium intelligence. So focusing on the 16 words, and keeping the presidential summary of the NIE super-classified, helped keep attention away from the aluminum tubes issue. Several good new details as well, especially on Hadley.

That Waas article raises a lot of questions. First and foremost, who needs to leak this now? It really seems like a response to Libby's new storyline. If that's the case, then I suspect Tenet is the main source for this. He is certainly a former senior government official outside the White House who was personally familiar with the damage-control effort. And he has several reasons to be upset with the new Libby narrative. Of course, he not a Republican political appointee involved in the process (that sounds like Powell or one of his surrogates).

Another interesting part of the piece is that it leads with Karl Rove, but it is almost all about Hadley. The most interesting bits aren't directly sourced. I wonder what eRiposte will make of the timeline on the aluminum tubes and Niger stories (as I read the article, it pretty much confirms several things that eRiposte has dug out).

so Libby hid the Cooper conversation to protect Rove (that's the conspiricy right there-rove to cooper then libby to cooper)

and now scooter says that he remembers that two people told him something that he doesn't remember anything about

before he's done, libby will prove beyond a reasonable doubt and to a moral cretainty that there was a criminal conspiricy between libby, rove, and the WHIG to out Valerie Plame


Let's hope so.

The other reason Libby might lie about Cooper telling him of Plame, rather than vice versa, is because it would eliminate any logical evidence that Cooper had received the leak before his conversation with Libby...

If this was the intent, it worked.

"Worked" in what sense? Obviously, Fitzgerald found out about it eventually.

Or did this push the whole process past the election? Are you really sure that if Libby had simply told "the truth" about the Cooper chat, that Fitzgerald would have drilled down to Rove and handed down indictments by the fall of 2004?

Alternatively, even if Libby had told the truth about Cooper, Fitzgerald still would have negotiated for his testimony (as he did), gotten it in the summer of 2004 (as he did) and been puzzling over a next step after Cooper confirmed Libby's version.

And of course, Judy was still unresolved.

If Libby had testified about confirming for Cooper, rather than telling him, I doubt Fitz would have been willing to limit Cooper's testimony to Libby in Summer 2004. But we can't tell whether it would have pushed it beyond the election.

I doubt Fitz would have been willing to limit Cooper's testimony to Libby in Summer 2004.

Pincus, Kessler and Russert seemd to deliver pretty limited testimony. Why not Cooperer?

more 6-month old Plame news

actually it's some very valuable (to me anyway) clarification on a pre-indictment Leopold scoop on Hannah


Pincus, Kessler and Russert seemd to deliver pretty limited testimony. Why not Cooperer?

Because if Libby had testified that Cooper brought up Plame and merely confirmed for him, Fitzgerald would have known that Cooper had another, earlier source on Plame and Fitzgerald would have wanted to know about that source.

As it was, the initial subpoena to Cooper was broad, and narrowed subsequently by Fitzgerald to Libby alone, presumably because he either believed that Libby was Cooper's first source or because he thought he could use that pretext, supported by Libby's testimony, to get Cooper into the grand jury room more easily, at which point he could press Cooper for more information, or be in a better position to go after him again, as actually transpired. The WaPo reported that Fitzgerald seemed surprised when Cooper made clear that Libby was merely a confirming source for him - but something, I can't remember what, that I've read made me think that Fitzgerald may have been faking that surprise.

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