I just submitted the following question to the online discussion that Richard Cohen is having with readers.
You said above, "I'm not taking anyone's word about it, I'm not saying there were no consequences to her outing, but it was done inadvertently. And in fact, a special prosecutor could not bring a case against anybody for the leak."
One of the reasons why Fitzgerald could not bring a case against anybody for the leak was specifically because Libby lied. He poisoned the investigation by seeding it with falsehoods and obscuring the underlying issue. That is why he was convicted of obstructing justice. By his deliberate acts Mr. Libby obstructed an investigation that might have determined if there was a real underlying crime.
You decry the sentence because you say there wasn't an underlying crime. But you don't know that. You can't know that.
And the reason you can't is directly because of Mr. Libby's actions.
That is why Libby deserves the punishment he is getting.
Is it really so difficult for Mr. Cohen to get this basic point?