Thursday, September 29, 2005


Judy's Out; Fingers Scooter

I'm guessing this will rouse little more than a yawn, but NY Times reporter Judith Miller* is out of the pokey. She was initially jailed for her refusal to identify the administration official who had (apparently illegally) leaked the name of a CIA operative, later published by Robert Novak. That official has released her from her confidentiality pledge--it's Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Dick Cheney's Chief of Staff, which everyone already knew.

The Times, embarrassed by her reportage (much of which was later proved wrong), has been making much hay about her noble imprisonment, and so expect more of the same. About the only thing I find interesting is this bizarre passage, which has the unavoidable scent of coverup:
Ms. Miller spoke with Mr. Libby by telephone earlier this month as their lawyers listened, according to people briefed on the matter. It was then that Mr. Libby told Ms. Miller that she had his personal and voluntary waiver.

But the discussions were at times strained, with Mr. Libby and Mr. Tate asserting that they communicated their voluntary waiver to Ms. Miller's lawyers more than year ago, according to those briefed on the case. Mr. Libby wrote to Ms. Miller in mid-September, saying that he believed her lawyers understood that his waiver was voluntary.

Others involved in the case have said that Ms. Miller did not understand that the waiver had been freely given and did not accept it until she had heard from him directly.
So what was she still doing in the pokey? Strange.

*In my effort to make these posts more coherent, here's a quick backgrounder: Judy Miller is a writer for the Times who famously riled liberals by administration-friendly stories in the lead-up to the war.

"In July of 2005, Miller was jailed for contempt of court by refusing to testify before a federal grand jury investigating a leak naming Valeria Plame as a covert CIA agent. Miller did not write about Plame, but is reportedly in possession of evidence relevant to the leak investigation. (Plame's CIA identity was revealed by political commentator Robert Novak on July 14, 2003.)" [Source: Wikipedia]

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