Disgusted with the self-serving behavior and convenient "memories" on all sides of the controversy, Fitzgerald said he is retiring from the law altogether, and plans to indulge his life-long passion, the breeding of champion Rhodesian Ridgebacks on his Virginia farmstead.
"Reading the New York Times article by Todd S. Purdum (assisted by David Johnston and Douglas Jehl), I was particularly distressed by their characterization of Joe "Say-It-Ain't-So" Wilson, who has been shown to be an inveterate liar, as a "prominent administration critic" and further on as
former Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV, [who] has sharply criticized the administration's rationale for war with Iraq...
as though this clown had some sort of credibility."
"Throughout a painstaking investigation," Mr. Fitzgerald continued, "it never ceased to amaze me how guys in their fifties and sixties, who couldn't remember what they had eaten for breakfast, let alone the name of the restaurant where they'd had dinner with their girlfriends less than a week ago, could recall not only what they themselves had said, but what their interlocutors had said, in casual conversations about CIA nonentities two years prior. Let me just quote from the New York Times piece, by way of example:"
"The way [Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward] describes it, which is he walked by and said something about Wilson's wife being at C.I.A., I have absolutely no memory of it at all," Mr. Pincus said in a telephone interview. "And I think he may say that my reaction was 'What!' " like I was surprised. He now thinks I may never have heard him, and said, 'What?' "
Mr. Pincus did recall a later conversation with Mr. Woodward, in October 2003, after Mr. Pincus wrote about administration officials' efforts to discredit Mr. Wilson. He said Mr. Woodward stopped by his desk to tell Mr. Pincus that he "wasn't the only one who had been told," about Ms. Wilson's identity before it was publicly revealed in a syndicated column by Robert D. Novak on July 14, 2003. Mr. Pincus said Mr. Woodward "asked me to keep him out of my reporting, and I agreed to do it."
Mr. Pincus said he agreed not to pursue the question of whether anyone in the administration might have contacted Mr. Woodward because "he hadn't written a story." He continued, "I was writing that they had talked to a group of people. I don't think I named everybody."
"I'm supposed to get a skeptical jury to buy accounts like these? Give me a freakin' break!" Fitzgerald snorted, tossing The New York Times onto his desk, where it nearly collided with a twenty-seven-foot stack of affidavits.
Vice President Cheney could not be reached for comment, but top-level administration sources denied that any sighs of relief had been heard coming from undisclosed locations.