Headline Of The Week...
"I believe Patrick Fitzgerald was shocked (and possibly awed as well) when, in the course of questioning Libby before the grand jury about his July 8 meeting in the St. Regis Hotel with Judy Miller, he stumbled upon the amazing insta-declassification of the National Intelligence Estimate (NIE). Today in the courtroom, the jury heard audio of Fitzgerald asking Libby no fewer than 17 questions on the topic.
Incidentally, emptywheel (aka Marcy Wheeler), who wrote a whole book on this stuff, thinks that Libby made up the whole I-leaked-the-NIE-to-Miller story to hide the inconvenient fact that the instruction in his notes to leak something to Miller on July 8 was really about Valerie Plame. He invented the NIE leak to cover himself, and then that was the inspiration for the completely unprecedented insta-declassification doctrine."
Dick's Talking Points
"I made the point the other day that if Cheney were put on the stand, he might be put in a place where he refuted some of Libby's testimony. Specifically, Cheney might have to admit that he and Libby talked about revealing Plame's identity with reporters during the week of July 6. And this presents a problem, because it either means both Libby and Cheney would claim to have forgotten about Plame's ID, then learned it again as if it were new the week of the leak. Or, they'd effectively be admitting to leaking Plame's ID after having learned of it through classified channels, making it a possible violation of the IIPA (barring, of course, a Cheney claim to have declassified Plame's identity before leaking it to reporters, which is where I think we are heading).
But given what we know about how Cheney's own talking points on Plame evolved between June 10 and July 14, it is almost impossible for Cheney to argue that he--like Libby--forgot Plame's ID and learned it as if it were new. Which of course makes it difficult for Libby to argue that he forgot. If his boss was actively remembering, what are the chances Libby was actively forgetting? Huh.
So here's the evolution of Cheney's talking points, as best as I can reconstruct them." <more Emptywheel>