I said when Libby was first mentioned as the guilty party in the leaking of Plame's name and position that he would never have done so independently of Cheney. I knew, and I'm sure I was not the only person who knew, that this whole treasonous episode would eventually be traced to Dick Cheney's office. And so it is. Everyday in the Libby Trial so far has involved Cheney more and more importantly to the leak. There is little doubt that Libby did, in fact, lie about what he knew, and little doubt that he should be found guilty of lying. But if that is all that results from this trial it will be a hollow victory indeed. What of Cheney? He is not on trial. He will probably remain untouched by this whole sordid affair. If he had even a shred of decency he would resign. But as it is obvious he has no decency, no interest in serving his country, no interest in doing the right thing, we cannot expect him to do it. Bush could, of course, insist that he resign, but that seems so unlikely as to be out of the realm of possibility. The Republicans could insist that he resign for the good of their party and the good of the country, but that seems equally unlikely. It is a most interesting and unprecedented situation. It is obvious he is guilty of orchestrating the leak, and equally obvious that he is guilty of helping to lie us into an unnecessary and immoral "war." As Biden put it the other day, everyone knows Cheney doesn't know what he is talking about, he has been wrong about everything. So here we are. We have a Vice-President who is known to be a liar, participated in a treasonous act, has poll ratings lower than a snake's belly, and simply refuses to acknowledge any guilt or responsibility, and apparently nothing is being done about it. I conclude that the Republican party has a death wish.
Are the Democrats (and some Republicans) going to let Bush pursue his trophy "war" endlessly? Is there no limit to the number of American (and Iraqi) deaths we are going to tolerate? Is there no way out of this terrible mess? I suggest there is a way out. We withdraw our troops as cautiously and carefully as possible, abandon our plans for permanent bases in Iraq, and agree to pay reparations for what Bush/Cheney have done. Bush/Cheney, of course, could never go along with such a solution because (1) they would have to admit what they did was stupid beyond belief, and (2) they are fundamentally unable to give up their addiction to oil. No permanent bases, no guarantee of oil. But it was not about oil. Oh, no. It was about - what was it about? I've forgotten.
Last week I finished a book called Wine and War. It was an account of all the ways the French employed to keep the Germans from looting their best wines. It was fascinating, not only for the cleverness of the French, but also because of what it tells of the French Resistance and the behavior of both the Germans and French. I recommend it.
I have also just finished American Brew by Maureen Ogle, a history of beer in the United States from the very beginning until the present time. I'm not really a beer drinker but this is a most interesting account of the German introduction of beer to the United States, and the changing tastes for beer over the years. It is not as readable as Wine and War but if you are interested in such things it is very informative.
Here at Sandhill the winter offers much time for reading and reflection, a pleasant change from the demands of Spring and Summer gardening. Time to order seeds. Life goes on. We love it here on our sea of ice and snow.