Thursday, October 06, 2005

The Angel Of What, Exactly?


Even if it is voluntary, two things about Karl Rove's decision to give in and make an 11th hour (re)appearance before Patrick Fitzgerald's PlameGate Grand Jury, have many wondering if all those mega-indictments really are coming after all.

First, despite the fact that Mr. Fitzgerald did not deliver a 'target letter' to Mr. Rove may protect him from having to take the 5th on the entire deal, but it did not preclude the possibility of an indictment at a later time.

Second, the fact that Mr. Rove's lawyer, Mr. Luskin, has been all over the map regarding his client's position and intentions suggests that they have not yet figured out a way to manage the newscycle on this one because they, themselves, don't know what is going to happen.

And both are good news, because together they strongly suggest that Mr. Fitzgerald is not carrying the Cheney Administration's water on this one.

Regardless, it's important to remember that this entire business of the press being informed that undercover CIA agent Ms. Plame was 'fair game' was all about revenge right from the start.

Revenge against her husband Joseph Wilson for blowing the whistle on the bogus Niger uranium thing and thus forcing the Rovians to fess up that those 16 words inserted into the 2003 State of the Union Address were little more than bald-faced lies.

And with the revenge motive in mind, it is important to remember that Mr. Rove's feelings about the subject are not exactly a secret in Washington circles. Here is Ron Suskind's illuminating description, from a 2003 article published in Esquire.

"I arrived at his office a few minutes early, just in time to witness the Rove Treatment, which, like LBJ’s famous browbeating style, is becoming legend but is seldom reported. Rove’s assistant, Susan Ralston, said he’d be just a minute. She’s very nice, witty and polite. Over her shoulder was a small back room where a few young men were toiling away. I squeezed into a chair near the open door to Rove’s modest chamber, my back against his doorframe.

Inside, Rove was talking to an aide about some political stratagem in some state that had gone awry and a political operative who had displeased him. I paid it no mind and reviewed a jotted list of questions I hoped to ask. But after a moment, it was like ignoring a tornado flinging parked cars. "We will f*ck him. Do you hear me? We will f*ck him. We will ruin him. Like no one has ever f*cked him!" As a reporter, you get around—curse words, anger, passionate intensity are not notable events—but the ferocity, the bellicosity, the violent imputations were, well, shocking. This went on without a break for a minute or two. Then the aide slipped out looking a bit ashen, and Rove, his face ruddy from the exertions of the past few moments, looked at me and smiled a gentle, Clarence-the-Angel smile. "Come on in." And I did."

And the best thing?

Unlike hatchet men, Angels have no need to walk over their own grandmothers to get what they want or to undergo religious conversions while they are in prison.


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