Over the past day and a half I have read a great deal of analysis about the recently disclosed Libby - Grand Jury testimony. This is not an easy case to understand for sure and I certainly cannot sift through the details as well as Firedoglake or John Dean at Findlaw have.
But for me, I think the new revelations all come down to on thing - timing.
We know that "Scooter" Libby gave information from the infamous NIE to Judy Miller of the New York Times on July 8, 2003. The information in that NIE was not "officially" declassified until July 18, 2003 - a difference of 10 Days.
Here is where the devil is in the details.
Scenario 0ne - If George Bush declassified the information prior to July, 8 - then Libby did not disclose classified material and George Bush has allowed three years of investigation, months of jail time for Miller, and has repeatedly mislead or lied directly to the American people about this entire ordeal.
Scenario two - If Bush declassified the information on July 18, 2003 knowing that Libby had already leaked it at the direction of Vice President Cheney - Well, that is one big fat conspiracy at the highest level of our government which explains why Cheney had to tag along with George when he spoke to Fitzgerald. Was Bush just covering for Cheney and Libby's mistake?
The third scenario is the only one that I think could get Bush out from under this particular cloud. Bush would have to come out and say that July 18, 2003 was the actual declassification date and that he had no knowledge of and did not authorize Libby to leak prior to that date (The Grand Jury testimony from Libby is that Cheney told Libby that Bush had authorized the "leak"). Bush could still claim that Cheney and Libby were acting alone. This would effectively throw Libby and Cheney under the Bus. I seriously doubt that Bush has the guts to do it despite all of his Texas rancher tough-guy bravado.
Bush's next move might tell us what really happened, whether it is to tell us what really happened or not.
Of course I could be completely off base, and If I am I'm sure you guys will tell me.
Update: Looks like scenario three is the one their going with. This article today says that Bush told Cheney to get the information out, but left the details to the VP which definitely puts it on Cheney - but also just makes George look detached and not interested enough to concern himself with details. Plus, he still lied many times by saying he had no idea who leaked.
This whole incident just confirms that Bush and Co. cherry picked all over the place to take us to his wanted war.