Plame Gossip - theory of the coverup
Short version, the Justice Department notified Al Gonzales about the investigation. He immediately called Andy Card, and then the two of them, so their story goes, didn't issue any notification to anybody for twelve hours.
But, there are 250 emails and documents which were "improperly archived" as was disclosed in one of the Libby filings. That awkward phrase has always implied to me an amateurish attempt to destroy them by someone without the technical knowledge of the White House email system. Maybe someone operating in that 12 hour gap. There's also less solid reporting of erased hard drives, and, as yet, we don't know whose computers were involved.
I'm under the impression that these emails and documents were not just one exchange between two people, but instead conversations off a number of desks meaning the deleter would have to be someone with huge security clearances and the ability to access all these systems. Or, it could have been a coordinated effort among several individuals.
The recent key revelation that unlocks this theory was that Rove was aware a month ago that he would be forced to testify again. This would have been a couple days before the Card resignation. Circumstantial, but the possibility does merit a reexamination? I, like others, theorized at the time that this could be the case.
The questions spawning in this interpretation: Has Rove been cooperating against Card? Who coordinated the purging? How complicit is Al Gonzales? Did anyone else know of the original document request during the 12 hour gap?
Is the reporting regarding these missing documents "Rove was able to chart a path for Fitzgerald directly into the office of the Vice President" true?
All of this, all of this, from Libby to Rove to Hadley to Card, all involves the coverup. Once it is broken, then perhaps we can get back to talking about the underlying crime of outing Valerie Plame.
Those emails are the key to this case. They will show who knew about Plame's NOC status, roughly when, and the general nature of the discussion surrounding her outing. And Fitzgerald, as well as the Libby defense, apparently now has them.
One More Note: Almost every major break on this story has come from three sources: Jason Leopold, formerly Rawstory, now at Truthout, Larisa Alexandrovna at Rawstory, and Murray Waas at the National Journal. When the history of this case that rocked the Bush White House is written, I really do hope that their roles are properly represented and that the credit goes to them.