Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Crisis of Leadership: Former Chief of Staff Sentenced

The June 5, 2007 sentencing of Lewis "Scooter" Libby, the former Chief of Staff of the Vice President of the United States, is a another example of the crisis of leadership within the highest levels of public service. Libby was sentenced to 30 months in prison for lying to investigators and obstructing inquiries into the leak of former CIA agent Valerie Plame's identity.

Individuals previously considered untouchable due to their positions within American government are falling from grace and a renewal of character as the foundation for our actions is long overdue.

[Reprinted from Reuters –]

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A former top aide to Vice President Dick Cheney was sentenced on Tuesday to 30 months in prison for lying and obstructing a probe related to the Bush administration's handling of the Iraq war.

U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton imposed the stiff sentence on Lewis "Scooter" Libby for lying to investigators trying to determine who leaked the identity of CIA analyst Valerie Plame in 2003.

Walton also imposed a fine of $250,000 (125,000 pounds) and two years probation.

Libby, the former chief of staff to Cheney, made a final appeal. "It is respectfully my hope that the court will consider along with the jury verdict my whole life."

Walton, however, said while Libby's government service was admirable, it made his crime especially serious.

"It's important that we expect and demand a lot from people who put themselves in those positions," Walton said. "Mr. Libby failed to meet that bar. For whatever reason, he got off course."

Libby's charges grew out of a high-profile investigation into the leak of Plame's identity after her husband emerged as an early critic of the invasion of Iraq.

Plame, who has testified that the unmasking destroyed her career, offered no immediate comment. Vice President Cheney's office also was quiet, as was the White House.


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