Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Inside The Plamegate Investigation

Byron York of NRO reports that "a pattern is emerging n pre-trial arguments in the perjury and obstruction of justice case against former Cheney chief of staff Lewis Libby. That pattern is the recurring conflict between the Little Case and the Big Case."

The Little Case is "the narrow, tightly defined charge that Libby lied to prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald's grand jury." The Big Case, of course, "is what Fitzgerald originally set out to investigate: Who leaked Mrs. Wilson's identity, why was it done, and did it violate the Intelligence Identities Protection Act, the Espionage Act, or some other law?"

According to York, in the course of the investigation, Fitzgerald "has learned about the Big Case as much as one man with subpoena power, no supervision, unlimited funds, and no hesitation to threaten reporters with jail can learn. He just doesn't want to talk about it."

So what exactly is going on? What is Fitz after?

York concludes that Libby's team has succeeded in turning the Big Case into the Little Case of perjury. He writes: "After two and half years of investigating, after putting every conceivable witness under oath, after jailing one journalist and threatening others with jail, Patrick Fitzgerald argues that it doesn't even matter if Valerie Plame Wilson worked for the CIA at all."

One problem with this conclusion: It's pure hogwash. It is based solely on the Libby indictment and his perjury case.

Fitzgerald, however, is investigating a whole lot more than Libby. He has not ruled out more indictments. And he continues to smartly play his hand close to his chest, leaving York-media types flapping their forked-tongues in the wind.

York's conclusion is misleading, selective-fact, partisan truthiness masquerading as good journalism. But what else would you expect from someone who wrote this?

No comments: