Okay so the government official who leaked Plame’s CIA status to Novak is known to Fitzgerald. He hasn’t been charged. If Novak’s version is to be believed, and I don’t see why it shouldn’t be, the initial leak wasn’t some nefarious assault on Wilson, but an “inadvertant” mistake. So what, exactly, was the big deal? The CIA itself confirmed Plame’s employment status. Where are the apologies? The whole thing was a big stupid nothing. I’m not saying by the way, the matter shouldn’t have been investigated. Merely that the investigation revealed that the initial suspicions were unfounded.
Let’s review the facts as we know them – Bill Harlow (the member of the CIA) upon learning that Novak is about to out the fact that Valerie Plame is a CIA agent tells Novak that it would be a mistake if he does run his piece. Novak’s primary source was someone within the Administration other than Karl Rove (somewhere we should say something about the Office of the Vice President). Patrick Fitzgerald’s grand jury is still in session. So how does Jonah Goldberg know that no wrongdoing occurred? He does have powers beyond my comprehension!
Update: Even rightwinger Joe Scarborough finds the Novak canard that the leak was an accident to be of questionable merit:
Conservative commentators are already trumpeting Novak’s claim that the leak was inadvertent and accidental … Maybe I’m cynical or perhaps it’s because I worked in Congress for years. But you know what, I always found that leaks of this size were rarely mistakes regardless of what the writer or the right-wing people may tell you. I can assure you that if you assign selfish motives to leakers, you will rarely be proven wrong.”
Christy has more including a picture of a hippo yawning at the Novak “news”.
Update II: Kate O’Beirne for the defense:
But Scooter Libby’s memory is the only one that merits criminal charges and it appears that investigators have known that the disclosure of Plame’s employment was “inadvertent” since the Fall of 2003. This investigation and the indictment are ridiculous.
Shorter Kate: obstruction of justice and perjury are AOK if my client has a different memory of events from the prosecutor’s witnesses – especially if I can get a fellow hack to write some garbage over at Human Events.