Clarice Feldman provides a comprehensive review of the Plame matter in an article for the Weekly Standard. I know that many are bored with this seemingly unending story but I strongly suggest reading this account in order to understand how the Presse Ancienne manufactured (with Democratic help and sustenance) Mt. Everest from not even a mole hill.
The saga begins with a witting attempt by Armitage to undermine Wilson's fantastic tale, not through standing up in opposition but by the anonymous use of the 'unnamed source' stiletto. His motive for doing so was to protect the overgilded reputation of Powell, who, as Clarice clarifies, was a knowing participant in the decision to maintain silence and allow the press to continue in their nasty work. If Powell or Armitage had, either together or separately, a shred of courage or honor, they could have stopped this fable at inception. The low quality of their characters allowed them to think that they could sit in silence, protected by a prosecutor so bent on a malicious prosecution that he would never bring their scurrilous acts into public view.
They were also counting on their lapdogs in the press to provide public cover for their malfeasance in the same manner in which the press studiously ignores the same type of character defects in Senators McCain and Graham. Any nominal Republican willing to disparage the head of his party gets a free pass and pat on the back from the press whores.
It is not serendipity which caused McCain to name both Powell and Armitage as campaign advisors. It was the appeal of a common low character which raises personal advancement and self-glorification to the level of the highest goals to which a human being might aspire.
Honorable men know the right path to take when they find themselves in opposition to an elected leader. They present their case and if overruled search their convictions to see if they can continue to serve with honor and dignity. If they cannot, they resign and if they truly felt that their elected leader is in error they make their feelings known by public opposition. Honorable men do not reach for the stiletto of the 'anonymous source' as their first and primary tool. Honorable men do not watch in silence as innocents are persecuted in their stead. They do not sit on their hands as the press mounts a very damaging attack on an administration in which they have agreed to serve.
It is fitting that McCain and Graham have selected Powell and Armitage as advisors. They are well matched. It will also be fitting to remind the public of the manner in which they are matched whenever the opportunity arrises.