Robert Novak writes today about the true role of Richard Armitage (photo at left) in the Joe Wilson-Valerie Plame-Scooter Libby-Karl Rove-Patrick Fitzgerald fiasco. Novak's piece is remarkable in the manner in which he refuses to allow Armitage, his source regarding Plame's CIA position, to dissemble. He openly and directly contradicts Armitage's version of the "deep background" discussion he and Armitage had that resulted in Valerie Plame Wilson's "outing." Novak's final paragraph is a stinging indictment of his source:
Armitage's silence . . . caused intense pain for his colleagues in government and enabled partisan Democrats in Congress to falsely accuse Rove of being my primary source. When Armitage now says he was mute because of special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald's request, that does not explain his silent three months between his claimed first realization that he was the source and Fitzgerald's appointment on Dec. 30. Armitage's tardy self-disclosure is tainted because it is deceptive.Armitage's reputation has been damaged irreparably in this matter, I think. Meanwhile, as Ralph notes in an earlier post, there are some very troubling lingering questions about this sordid affair. More here.