Maureen Dowd: Bush Should ‘Fire Himself’ For Libby/Miller Leak

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By: E&P Staff

Maureen Dowd, for the first five-plus years of the Bush II presidency, has offered plenty of unsolicited advice to the man she dubbed Dubya.

Now, after the latest news about “Scooter” Libby and her former colleague Judith Miller, she has come up with the ultimate urging: “Really, W. should fire himself. He swore to look high and low for the scurrilous leaker and, lo and behold, he has himself in custody. Since the Bush administration is basically a monarchy, he should pass the crown to Jenna. She couldn’t do worse than this bunch of airheads and bullies.”

In her Saturday column for the Times, Dowd observes, “Since President Bush seems to see his mission in Iraq as part of God’s plan, he must have assumed that getting Scooter Libby to leak parts of a classified document on Iraq to rebut Joe Wilson’s charge about a juiced-up casus belli was part of God’s plan.”

Dowd also adds this fresh take on the Judy Miller business: “The Bushies once more showed incompetence by creating this elaborate daisy-chain leak and giving it to the one person in journalism who had been roped off from writing about the prewar intelligence, while her editors sorted out problems with her past W.M.D. coverage. …

“If the administration were seriously trying to declassify something in the national interest, wouldn’t it have President Bush explain his decision or have his Scottish terrier yip it out from the podium, rather than having Scooter whisper it in Judy’s ear?

“Instead, sounding very Lewis Carroll, the White House claims that when the president leaks something secret, it’s not secret anymore. It’s the Immaculate Declassification: intelligence is declassified by passing it on to a friendly reporter.”

On Sunday, the Times’ David Sanger and David Barstow report that when Bush authorized Libby to reveal previously classified intelligence to a reporter about Saddam Hussein’s efforts to obtain uranium, “that information was already being discredited by several senior officials in the administration, interviews conducted during and since that crucial period in June and July of 2003 show.”

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