Jul 2, 2007

Bush Commutes Libby's Sentence; Talk Radio Impugnes Prosecution as "Political"

Seizing on the timing of the produced propaganda of "terror" plots in the UK as a convenient distraction, Bush commuted Libby's sentence to prison. Talk radio ignoramuses calling into WCHS today tried to say this was a "Democrat" conspiracy (while the Bush administration was advancing a conspiracy theory of WMD in Iraq with "no doubt" rhetoric that was outright lies and distortion) to cause trouble for the Bush administration, despite the fact that it was a NON-POLITICAL prosecution by this Republican Prosecutor and a non-partisan Grand Jury! Now consider republican Bush-appointed prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald's viewpoint, in his own news conference, about PERJURY, LYING UNDER OATH, HIGH OFFICIALS, AND OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE, and a "prosecutor's duty", and ask yourself whether this was "political" or an important LEGAL prosecution against corruption within the administration--which could have gone much higher!

Now consider the record per the Washington Post article, which makes the real reason for commuting Libby's sentence is to deflect the "cloud" around Cheney himself, who used the "outing" of Plame to ruin her career as payback for her husband's (Joe Wilson) proof that Saddam was not seeking uranium from Niger, contrary to the President's deceitful State of the Union Speech used to justify war with Iraq. The implications are clear, the "intelligence" was a manufactured lie to justify the war which loyalist republicans still refuse to accept, and that Libby was the loyal "fall guy" (thus Bush defended him) who lied and obstructed justice about the Plame affair to PROTECT VICE PRESIDENT CHENEY, AND TO PROTECT THE "BIG LIE" WHICH JUSTIFIED THE WAR. Defending the WMD lie was absolutely essential, and orchestrated by Cheney (head of the neoconservatives fifth column embedded in the administration and Pentagon pushing the PNAC plan for a "new middle east" devised in Sept. 2000) in order to accomplish their objective of the invasion of Iraq under guise of a "war on terrorism". Wilson had to be "dealt with" for his column exposing the lie.

In Friday's eminently readable court filing, Fitzgerald quotes the Libby defense calling his prosecution "unwarranted, unjust, and motivated by politics." In responding to that charge, the special counsel evidently felt obliged to put Libby's crime in context. And that context is Dick Cheney.

Libby's lies, Fitzgerald wrote, "made impossible an accurate evaluation of the role that Mr. Libby and those with whom he worked played in the disclosure of information regarding Ms. Wilson's CIA employment and about the motivations for their actions."

It was established at trial that it was Cheney himself who first told Libby about Plame's identity as a CIA agent, in the course of complaining about criticisms of the administration's run-up to war leveled by her husband, former ambassador Joseph Wilson. And, as Fitzgerald notes: "The evidence at trial further established that when the investigation began, Mr. Libby kept the Vice President apprised of his shifting accounts of how he claimed to have learned about Ms. Wilson's CIA employment."

The investigation, Fitzgerald writes, "was necessary to determine whether there was concerted action by any combination of the officials known to have disclosed the information about Ms. Plame to the media as anonymous sources, and also whether any of those who were involved acted at the direction of others. This was particularly important in light of Mr. Libby's statement to the FBI that he may have discussed Ms. Wilson's employment with reporters at the specific direction of the Vice President." (My italics.)

Not clear on the concept yet? Fitzgerald adds: "To accept the argument that Mr. Libby's prosecution is the inappropriate product of an investigation that should have been closed at an early stage, one must accept the proposition that the investigation should have been closed after at least three high-ranking government officials were identified as having disclosed to reporters classified information about covert agent Valerie Wilson, where the account of one of them was directly contradicted by other witnesses, where there was reason to believe that some of the relevant activity may have been coordinated, and where there was an indication from Mr. Libby himself that his disclosures to the press may have been personally sanctioned by the Vice President." (My italics.)

Up until now, Fitzgerald's most singeing attack on Cheney came during closing arguments at the Libby trial in February. Libby's lawyers had complained that Fitzgerald was trying to put a "cloud" over Cheney without evidence to back it up -- and that set Fitzgerald off. As I wrote in my Feb. 21 column, the special counsel responded with fire: "There is a cloud over what the Vice President did that week. . . . He had those meetings. He sent Libby off to [meet then-New York Times reporter] Judith Miller at the St. Regis Hotel. At that meeting, the two-hour meeting, the defendant talked about the wife. We didn't put that cloud there. That cloud remains because the defendant has obstructed justice and lied about what happened. . . .

"That's not something that we put there. That cloud is something that we just can't pretend isn't there."

Finally, here is Valeria Plame's Testimony before Congress verifying her covert status (for the doubters) which was denigrated by Talk Show ignoramuses who refuse to deal with the truth because they are more loyal to a lying administration (party loyalty at all costs) than to the Constitution of the United States, despite required oaths of office: