By Patrick Martin:
Is there a Bush pardon in Lewis Libby’s future?
Cheney aide abruptly ends defense in perjury trial
15 February 2007
Attorneys for I. Lewis Libby, the former top aide to Vice President Dick Cheney who is facing perjury charges, rested their case Wednesday after declining to call either Cheney or Libby himself as defense witnesses.
The result was a nearly uncontested prosecution case demonstrating that Libby repeatedly lied to the grand jury investigating the leak of the name of CIA agent Valerie Plame Wilson.
The decision not to have Libby take the stand in his own defense and not to call Cheney as a character witness represents an abrupt abandonment of the trial strategy which Libby’s attorneys had made public over the past year.
They had repeatedly suggested that Libby’s defense—given the overwhelming evidence that he had given false testimony to the grand jury—was that he had forgotten the details of the Wilson affair because of the press of high-level national security work in which he was engaged.
Cheney’s testimony was critical both as a character witness and to support the portrayal of Libby as an overburdened aide with many more important concerns than whether Valerie Wilson, wife of Iraq war critic Joseph Wilson, was employed at the CIA.
Libby himself would have to take the stand to substantiate the “forgetfulness” defense, as Judge Reggie Walton made clear in a series of rulings before the start of the trial.
- CIA’s anti-terrorism effort called ‘colossal flop’ (latimes.com)
- CIA Leak Fast Facts (cnn.com)
- CIA’s Non-Official Cover (NOC) Clandestine Intelligence Program Caled “Colossal Flop” (matthewaid.com)
- Valerie Plame Wilson knocks Cheneys (politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com)
- Rep. Trey Radel to take leave of absence, enter drug treatment (cnn.com)
- US-Iran War Averted by Agreement to Negotiate on Nuclear Enrichment (juancole.com)