A ‘Dear Judy’ Letter from ‘Scooter’–With ‘Admiration’

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By: E&P Staff

In a New York Times article today on the latest turn involving Judith Miller, who made a deal with the prosecutor for her release from jail on Thursday, Adam Liptak observes that a series of just-released letters hint that ?a similar deal may have been available for some time and raise questions about why Ms. Miller decided to testify now.?

One of the letters, from the key source, I. Lewis ?Scooter? Libby, to Miller on September 15, expressed surprise that her lawyers had asked him to “repeat for you the waiver of confidentiality that I specifically gave to your counsel over a year ago.” Surprisingly, he stated that he expected her testimony to help him.

This ?Dear Judy? letter repeatedly expressed his admiration for her and cited everything she was losing in jail, from missing out on covering new biological threats to enjoying the aspens turning out West. He noted that the aspens “turn in clusters, because their roots connect them.”

But maybe the personal tone is not so surprising. The letter suggests that the two, who saw eye to eye on Iraqi weapons of mass destruction, which never materialized, are either very close-?or Libby was just pretending, to make her go easy on him if she did testify.

The text of the entire letter, which was mailed to Miller’s attorney, Robert Bennett, has not been printed in the Times or elsewhere.

It begins with ?Dear Judy, Your reporting, and you are missed. Like many Americans, I admire your principled stand. But, like many friends and readers, I would welcome you back among the rest of us, doing what you do best?reporting.?

Then, several paragraphs expressed his surprise that she has not acted on his voluntary offer of a year earlier to waive his rights to confidentiality, since it ?served my best interests?this is the rare case where this ?source? will be better off if you testified.? He dubbed this the ?Miller corollary.?

He closed the letter on this personal note (although he wasn?t quite right on when autumn begins): ?You went into jail in the summer. It is fall now. You will have stories to cover?Iraqi elections and suicide bombers, biological threats and the Iranian nuclear program. Out West, where you vacation, the aspens will already be turning. They turn in clusters, because their roots connect them. Come back to work?-and life. Until then, you will remain in my thoughts and prayers.?

?With admiration, Scooter Libby.?

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