The NYT reports:
WASHINGTON, Aug. 29 — Richard L. Armitage, a former deputy secretary of state, has acknowledged that he was the person whose conversation with a columnist in 2003 prompted a long, politically laden criminal investigation in what became known as the C.I.A. leak case, a lawyer involved in the case said on Tuesday.
Mr. Armitage did not return calls for comment. But the lawyer and other associates of Mr. Armitage have said he has confirmed that he was the initial and primary source for the columnist, Robert D. Novak, whose column of July 14, 2003, identified Valerie Wilson as a Central Intelligence Agency officer.
The identification of Mr. Armitage as the original leaker to Mr. Novak ends what has been a tantalizing mystery.
Here's the supposed trail of events:
In the accounts by the lawyer and associates, Mr. Armitage disclosed casually to Mr. Novak that Ms. Wilson worked for the C.I.A. at the end of an interview in his State Department office. Mr. Armitage knew that, the accounts continue, because he had seen a written memorandum by Under Secretary of State Marc Grossman.
Mr. Grossman had taken up the task of finding out about Ms. Wilson after an inquiry from I. Lewis Libby Jr., chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney. Mr. Libby’s inquiry was prompted by an Op-Ed article on May 6, 2003, in The New York Times by Nicholas D. Kristof and an article on June 12, 2003, in The Washington Post by Walter Pincus.
Mr. Grossman’s memorandum did not mention that Ms. Wilson had undercover status.
He was also the source for another journalist about Ms. Wilson, a reporter who did not write about her. The lawyers and associates said Mr. Armitage also told Bob Woodward, assistant managing editor of The Washington Post and a well-known author, of her identity in June 2003.
And so on and so on...
Why did Armitage wait this long to make these revelations public if he had already been exonerated by prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald and had mentioned her name in a so-called 'casual' conversation? And why wouldn't Grossman's memo have shown that Plame was a covert agent? Isn't that a huge mistake of colossal proportions on his part? Or is that even true?
It would seem that these fingers pointing at Libby are simply laying all of the blame at his feet in preparation to put the squeeze on him when he has his day in court - if it ever gets to that. Perhaps the circular firing squad members are making sure that Libby knows he's the fall guy. Will Libby ever point his finger at Cheney? Highly unlikely. If he did, he might as well move to Siberia for the rest of his life because he would surely be destroyed by the powers that be and would never do lunch in Washington again.
Once again, why did Armitage wait and why did his buddies cover for him? There's no honesty in DC - only politics.