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Paper: Powell aide is key witness in CIA outing probe

Published: Saturday May 20, 2006

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Former Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage has emerged as a key witness in the CIA leak probe, the NEW YORK DAILY NEWS' Ken Bazinet and James Meek report in Saturday editions. Excerpts: Full article here.


Armitage has been questioned several times, but is not expected to be indicted by the federal grand jury investigating who outed CIA spy Valerie Plame to journalists in 2003, sources said.

Armitage's testimony could hurt Vice President Cheney's indicted former chief aide Lewis (Scooter) Libby, or President Bush's political guru, Karl Rove.

Two sources familiar with the case said Armitage, Rove and Libby all had contacts with the press about Plame. Unlike Rove and Libby, Armitage appears to have tried to dissuade reporters from writing about her.

Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald recently had to sneak Armitage into a Washington courthouse to get past reporters - a sign of his value in the case, according to one source.

The Daily News' story comes just a day after a post by Washington insider Steve Clemons and coverage by RAW STORY which signaled that Armitage's role in the CIA leak investigation had been understated. According to Clemons, Armitage testified three times before the grand jury.

"I have learned from several other sources that Richard Armitage was neck deep in the Valerie Plame story," Clemons wrote Friday. "According to several insiders, as soon as Armitage realized mistakes he had made, he marched into Colin Powell and laid out 'everything' in full detail."