Is Karl Rove the Anthrax Killer?

The atmosphere of terror that these attacks helped build allowed Rove to temporarily win the political dominance he'd always craved.
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(Caution: Irony alert.)

Okay, I know it's a surprising conclusion, but hear me out.

As far back as April of 2001, the man some call "The Architect" wrote in a memo to Paul Wolfowitz that the anthrax vaccine was "a political problem for us." That's right. Rove was worried about the very same thing Bruce Ivins was allegedly worried about: the anthrax vaccine.

And consider the targets of those anthrax attacks: As Senate Majority Leader, Tom Daschle was the Democrat most strategically placed to block Rove's political agenda. Then there's Patrick Leahy. As chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Leahy was in an excellent position to investigate whatever shenanigans Rove was already planning over at the Justice Department. (That attack was a rare tactical error on Rove's part, however. As a longtime Grateful Dead fan, Leahy is unusually drug-resistant.)

Tom Brokaw at NBC was yet another target. Rove was publicly embarrassed on NBC during the 2000 election when he claimed Florida for Bush and was contradicted on-air by Tim Russert. And who was NBC's anchor that night? Chill alert: Tom Brokaw.

(People, including me, gave NBC's David Gregory a hard time for "dancing" with Rove last year. But if we knew then what Gregory knew - about what the man is capable of doing when angered - well, heck, son. You'd dance too.)

The there's the Big One, of course: These attacks contributed to an atmosphere of terror that allowed Rove to win (at least temporarily) the political dominance he'd always craved.

Okay, that pretty much covers motive. Then there's the matter of character. Our suspect, a man in his fifties, has a history of grievous misbehavior that dates back to his college days. He acknowledges entering a Democratic politician's office at the tender age of 19 and stealing materials in order to carry out an elaborate deception. And accounts of his high school student years characterize him as "a nerd and a motor mouth," which covers the "weirdness" angle that all these accusations of high-profile murder require.

Did I mention that he likes to go quail-hunting? With a rifle? A deadly weapon? And now our potential "perp" is under investigation by the Congress of the United States for a number of alleged crimes.

So let's see: We've covered "motive" and "character." That leaves "opportunity," which is an easy one. As a close confidant of the President, Rove had access to pretty much every government resource (civilian or military) that he wanted. That would include grades of anthrax that, unlike those discussed by the FBI yesterday, were powdered and weaponized.

Do we really believe Karl Rove is the anthrax killer? Of course not. This is satire, not some wacky conspiracy theory. And after all, who in their right mind would accuse someone of something so serious with such sketchy and circumstantial evidence?

Oh. Right.

RJ Eskow blogs at:

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