The Failed Fitzgerald Investigation
Lewis Libby has been accused of obstructing justice and lying to a grand jury, which are serious charges regardless of how anyone tries to spin it. But special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald needs to be held to account for the way in which he undertook this investigation.
The whole Ã¢€œPlamegateÃ¢€ fiasco is analogous to a murder investigation in which no one was killed, or a theft investigation where nothing was stolen. IsnÃ¢€™t step one to first ascertain whether the crime in question has actually been committed? It seems that Fitzgerald may have been absent the day they taught legal reasoning in law school.
If IÃ¢€™m correct about Valerie PlameÃ¢€™s status — and all indicators suggest that I am — then this investigation should have taken no longer than a single day. Fitzgerald should have called CIA director George Tenet, asked of PlameÃ¢€™s status, and judged whether it was even possible for anyone to have violated the Intelligence Identities Protection Act. At that point he should have given a statement saying that he cannot investigate a crime which did not happen. Case closed. Instead, Fitzgerald continued for another 22 months, and ended up catching Lewis Libby in a crime akin to giving a false alibi for a murder which never occurred.
Unless and until Fitzgerald explicitly states that the IIPA was violated, his entire investigation should be considered a sham and his charges against Libby a creation of the process, making them rather dubious.