Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Woodward, hand in your PRESS hat!

Yeaarggh. Woodward was told of Joe Wilson's CIA wife even before Libby told Judith Miller. This makes Woodward the first journalist to receive the leak--not Miller. Woodward won't disclose who his source is but he did say that he also spoke with Libby in late June. In total, Woodward claims that three sources provided him with the classified identity of Valerie Wilson/Plame. He says he's staying schtum until his sources release him from confidentiality (or whenever his next book deal comes through, whichever comes first). Woodward testified in front of Patrick Fitzgerald only after one of the three sources identified Woodward as a recipient of the information (Nov 3rd, i.e. post-Scooter indictments). I have no idea who the sources are, but we do know that Fitzgerald's been interviewing Rove's aides again. Maybe one of them spilled. Crooks & Liars figure that Cheney might've been Woody's source. Ex-CIA officer, Larry Johnson, also believes that Cheney/Scooter & Woodward are super-tight.

Why the "Yeaarggh?" Well, this makes Woodward a tremendously compromised journalist. He appeared on TV and radio to expressly minimize the importance of the CIA leak. Atrios reminds us of Bob's most recent poo-poohing on Larry King, the night before the Scooter indictments. And the VandeHai/Loennig story points out that Woodward appeared on NPR this summer and said, "When I think all of the facts come out in this case, it's going to be laughable because the consequences are not that great."

Bobbo is also compromised because of his early efforts to propagate the leak! Josh at TPM picks out a damning passage from the WaPo scoop:
Woodward's statement said he testified: "I told Walter Pincus, a reporter at The Post, without naming my source, that I understood Wilson's wife worked at the CIA as a WMD analyst."
Pincus said he does not recall Woodward telling him that. In an interview, Pincus said he cannot imagine he would have forgotten such a conversation around the same time he was writing about Wilson.
"Are you kidding?" Pincus said. "I certainly would have remembered that."
WTF, dude? Hand in your PRESS hat!

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