View Full Version : Libby Testimony Ties Bush, Cheney to Leak Plot

Feb 7th, 2007, 11:11 PM

(02-07) 04:00 PST Washington -- Former White House official Lewis "Scooter" Libby told a grand jury in 2004 that Vice President Dick Cheney was upset by an ambassador's public questioning of the Iraq war and that President Bush, Cheney and Libby were involved in a plan -- kept secret from other senior White House officials -- to leak previously classified intelligence to counter the criticism.
Libby's audiotape testimony, played for jurors in federal court here, offered new details about how the White House orchestrated a campaign to discredit the Iraq war critic, Ambassador Joseph Wilson. His wife, undercover CIA operative Valerie Wilson, also known by her maiden name Plame, was subsequently exposed in the media, triggering a criminal investigation.

As Libby sat silently in the courtroom, jurors heard his voice describe how he was instructed to leak intelligence secrets to selected reporters, even as other White House officials were expressing concern over the leaks and debating whether the administration should formally declassify intelligence reports on Iraq to combat criticism of the case for war.

At one point, Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald can be heard on the tapes expressing disbelief that Libby would take part in those meetings without disclosing that the president had effectively already declassified key portions of one of the main prewar pieces of intelligence on Iraq, a national intelligence estimate on the nation's alleged banned weapons programs.

"Was that unusual for you to have the national security adviser, the director of central intelligence, the White House chief of staff, among others, in the dark as to something that you had done regarding declassification?" Fitzgerald asked.

"It is not unusual for the vice president to tell me something which I am not allowed to share with others," Libby replied.

Libby's remarks came during a day in court devoted entirely to playing audiotapes of the former Cheney aide's grand jury testimony, allowing jurors to listen to the defendant's voice as he made statements prosecutors have labeled lies.

Libby faces five felony counts alleging perjury, making false statements and obstruction of justice for what he told investigators about his role in the campaign to discredit Wilson.

The tapes offer an intriguing window into the reaction within the White House to mounting criticism of its case for war with Iraq, as well as a chance to witness Fitzgerald's method as he sparred with Libby during eight hours of grand jury testimony.

Libby can be heard describing how Cheney was upset when Wilson went public with allegations that the White House had twisted intelligence to make the case for war. In an op-ed article, Wilson said he had been sent to investigate a key claim -- that Iraq was seeking uranium from the African nation of Niger -- and found it untrue, months before President Bush included the allegation in his 2003 State of the Union speech.

"It was a serious accusation," Libby said. "It was a very serious attack." It also quickly became a "topic that was discussed on a daily basis" in the White House.
Libby said that Cheney "thought we should get some of these facts out to the press. He then undertook to get permission from the president to talk about this" to reporters.

Libby said Cheney's lawyer, David Addington, had advised him that merely getting such permission from the president rendered the intelligence declassified. Bush has publicly acknowledged doing so. Libby's subsequent conversations with reporters and other White House officials are now at the center of the perjury trial. Prosecutors have produced a series of witnesses over the past week, including former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer, to say that they learned of Valerie Wilson's identity from Libby

Feb 8th, 2007, 12:33 AM
What a mess but yet not surprising. :(

Feb 8th, 2007, 01:03 AM
All the while that the President, the Vice President and their top aides were discussing ways to leak classified information, the President was out saying he knew nothing about this and he wanted to stop the leaks. Now we know that these were bald-faced lies. The President dragged this nation through Justice Department, FBI, and Special Prosecutor investigations for over two years and the gods know how many dollars, when he could have ended it at the very beginning by just saying he knew all about it and it was his affair. So on top of leaking classified material to smear a critic (which IS ILLEGAL) he also lied about it repeatedly to the nation and congress. Now don't we already have a precedent for impeachment when a President lies?

Feb 8th, 2007, 01:22 AM
We do, We do.....but that only applies when you lie about sex........now treason......you can lie about all day! :eek: :tape:

Feb 8th, 2007, 04:24 PM
The Congress with a decade of information, no a few days, gave Bush
war powers about Iraq. The UN, with a decade of information and actions,
voted to put Iraq on a timetable notice of impending military action if it
failed to comply fully.

The Senate in 1998 had an Iraq Freedom Act in place, all but giving any
President authorization to move on Iraq w/the info on hand at 1998....
and beyond.

Sorry, disagree if one may with the Iraq War and hate Bush...the man
did not act alone, on false information, or w/o a national policy in place
behind him backed by the Congress and the previous president.



Richard Armitgage.

I know it's hard and bothersome to deal with facts, but, the
fact is that Mr. Richard Armitage is the man who has admitted
he gave Novak the name, the info, and is the 'leaker'.

Colin Powell knew of this shortly thereafter.

Patrick Fitzgerald knew of all of this within a few days of starting
the special investigation authorized by the Bush Administration.

Armitage. Not Libby. He is under no cloud of being a 'leaker'. He is
defending himself against a perjury charge or two.

In the 'fishing for perjury' investigation, which is all it ended up being
if the prosecutor knew who was the admitted leaker long ago, Libby
is the only goat they could get.

Plame was not covert.
Plame's name to a reporter did not break any CIA agent law.
No one is charged with the CIA agent/leak law. No one.

Joe Wilson's testimony to Congress about his op-ed and Niger trip
and uranium investigation are all online w/Congress, and it shows,
as the Congressmen noted, that he in fact found information that
supported the Bush statement about Iraq and Niger and uranium.

Cheney did not ask for Wilson to go Africa. The CIA agents testimony
directly hit that lie early on in this case.

Scooter Libby may be found guilty of perjury. I don't know.
But, it will be on items that have nothing to do w/Plame, Wilson,
Niger, Iraq, or Bush or Cheney.... He is being tried on a technicality,
not a government conspiracy.

After years of investigation, this is all they came up with. The man
who did admit he was the leaker is where? Writing a book.

All the while Sandy Berger - confessed federal document thief - is
free and avoided any and all prosecution for a federal crime.

Feb 8th, 2007, 05:07 PM
Oh, let me see now...wait, isn't this called TREASON????? :shrug:

IMPEACH!!! :fiery: :rolleyes:

Feb 8th, 2007, 05:10 PM
Why is Fitzgerald trying to legally keep Libby's defense team from
calling certain witnesses? He is trying to keep Andrea Mitchell
off the stand now.

He has tried to keep the defense from seeing the documents the
FBI and Fitzgerald used to give reporters reason to testify in his
investigation...what concessions did he give them to get Libby?

He gave immunity to Ari Fleischer and Armitage early on, and now
doesn't want either on the stand. Why?

The testimony of Russert was very good...he was solid, and yet,
he wobbled. He gave a lot of 'I don't recall' answers. However,
as the defense pointed out, he had done that in a previous case,
and had been shown to have indeed said and done what he
'did not recall'.

Libby did not leak information, Armitage did. Libby is on trial for
basically doing a 'I do not recall' well enough.

Feb 8th, 2007, 05:23 PM
Did anyone bother to see what the judge told the jury?

He told them Plame's covert/overt status is not relevant to
the case. Her job is not relevant to the case. None of it
matters to the trial. The CIA leak law is not on trial. The
Wilson claims about Niger, false or true, are not on trial.

The federal law that brought up the issue, is not even a part
of the case that has Libby on trial.

A 'do not recall' moment is on trial between Miller and Libby.

Millers' testimony was mostly 'do not recall', not sure, can't
remember, notes are not clear, etc.

This is all about Libby and Judith Miller and a story that was never

Miller did not publish a story based on anything Libby and she
spoke of regarding Plame, Wilson, and Niger.

All the while, Novak and David Corn did publish Plame's name openly.

All the while, Ari Fleischer and Armitage revealed her name to others
in the press - and were given immunity by Fitzgerald.

Sadly, Miller went to jail for 85 days for doing no more or less than
what Russert and David Gregory and Corn and Novak did.....and now
Libby is on the table for years in jail for doing what? Nothing more
or less than anyone else in this political witchhunt did.

The White House and the President were found early on by Fitzgerald
to have done nothing in violation of the CIA law or in testimony.

Feb 8th, 2007, 09:34 PM
OK...so Libby goes to jail.He lied under oath about where he got the information.

Bush and Cheney? Well they will just sit back and smirk. They committed no crime, they will say.

Bush "declassified" the information, so Cheney had Libby disseminate it to the public.

It was a blatant act of politically driven assassination of character, but the president can declassify anything he wants.

So what are the ultimate consequences for Bush and Cheney? Nothing more than a continual decline in favoribility ratings. There is a wonderful case that this is an impeachable offense, but the GOP will simply scream that the president was trying to get his side of the story out there, and anyway, there is no crime!

They will have Rush and O'Reilly on message as well. I can hear it now:

"Look folks, the president committed no crime. The vice president committed no crime. What you have here is a political witch hunt. The Democrat Party just hates the idea that the president is protecting you and me from the terrorist and that he wanted to let people know that Joe Wilson was given a plush assignment from the CIA because his wife worked there. Frankly, I want to know when the husband of a CIA agent is given a cushy vacation to Niger! You will hear the Democrats and the liberal media screaming about this, but make no mistake my well informed friends, the President and Vice President were doing what was necessary to protect you and me from the terrorists. I know that the Democrats would rather let the terrorists win and that they don't care that 9/11 happened, but real men like Bush and Cheney will stand up for what is right. OK...let's take some calls....Braindead from Juno, you are on."

Don't be surprised if there is a "terra alert" soon.

Feb 8th, 2007, 09:56 PM
From the printed testimony, here and elsewhere, it's Fitzgerald injecting
his own thoughts and beliefs as fact, not the facts themselves.

Again, the issue is perjury.

The CIA law was not broken.

The White House did not break the law.
Libby did not break that law.
Bush and Cheney did not.
Armitage may have.
But, he's immune from any prosecution.

Read the Washington Post (January 2005) review of
Wilson's testimony and the bi-partisan Congressional
review of his writing and trip: it backed up the Bush
restatement of the English govt. Niger-Iraq uranium

Feb 8th, 2007, 10:59 PM
1) Cheney and Bush are both directly implicated in outing Valerie Plame.

2) The motive for blowing Plame's cover is critical to defining it as a crime.

3) Cheney and/or Bush have very possibly lied to a federal prosecutor under oath.

And I don't expect Fitzgerald to look the other way.

Feb 8th, 2007, 11:01 PM
Libby says Cheney then went to get Bush's "permission" to out Plame. Cheney was just being a good soldier. Just following orders.

I've been waiting for that. For a sure sign that, when the going get's tough, Bush will be the patsy. Smart enough to get elected. Dumb enough to not see how he is being set up to take the fall.

My point is: Cheney is already saying "Just following the Presidents orders."

I'm willing to bet that he has laid thorough groundwork for that position. Bush has been played.

Feb 9th, 2007, 02:59 AM
The righties are having a hell of a time spinning this one, but it still smells like a skunk and the smell comes right from the white house.