My personal musings about anything that gets on my radar screen--heavily dominated by politics.


Of Implications and Speculations

Two interesting stories caught my eye tonight, and not as much for what they are as for what they could be.

The first is this: Syria Feels Heat Over U.N. Report
Middle East Is Captivated By Findings in Hariri Killing

A day after its release, a U.N. report that implicated senior Syrian officials in the assassination of former Lebanese prime minister Rafiq Hariri escalated pressure on the already beleaguered government here and ignited renewed demands that Lebanon's pro-Syrian president step down.

And the second is this: Editor Says Reporter May Have Misled The Newspaper in Plame Leak Case

The comments by Robert Bennett came as Executive Editor Bill Keller accused Miller of apparently misleading the newspaper about her dealings with Vice President Cheney's top aide, signaling the first public split between Miller and the management of a newspaper that had fully embraced her in the contentious legal battle.

Now, like I said, in and of themselves, these stories may or may not amount to much. But I like looking at domino theories--thus the "speculation."

If pressure, particularly international pressure from France and the U.N. manages to topple the Syrian government--or perhaps some negotiated deal keeps Assad in power but fully cooperating--that could spell the beginning of the end of the Iraqi insurgency. It is safe to assume that the "insurgents", i.e. the terrorists, are using Syria as a base of operations; it may also be safe to assume that money, supplies, and munitions are also flowing through Syria. A change of leadership within Syria could lead to a cutting off of the pipeline. In addition, maybe it's too much to hope but that a new Syrian regime would "encourage" the real Lebanese government to allow us access to the Bekaa Valley, where a great deal of speculation re: Iraq's WMDs is centered.

Of course, it's also possible that a new Syria would be led by something or someone a bit worse than Assad.

And, as to the second story, since most of the recent speculation regarding the Plame investigation is centered around the idea that Rove/Libby would be indicted for a cover-up based on not remembering much of the original events of the case, wouldn't it also be possible that Miller could be indicted for the very same thing? If she "misspoke" to her bosses, what might she have said to the grand jury? It would seem clear that she misstated many things to the grand jury already--why would she have a higher threshhold for prosecution than Rove and Libby?

Could you imagine the firestorm that would erupt if Fitzgerald came back with no indictments for the political players in this little drama, but instead nailed a reporter for printing the name of a "covert operative"? That sure would be fun to watch.

Of course, I have no information that would validate any of this--that's why it's "implications and speculations."

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