Judith Miller outside.jpgIncarcerated NYT reporter Judith Miller was released from prison today after reaching an agreement with federal prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald to testify before the grand jury — 85 days after her stubborn refusal to do so sent her to jail.

Miller’s source was Lewis “Scooter” Libby, Vice President Dick Cheney’s Chief of Staff. Although Libby claimed to have released Miller to disclose their communications a year ago (to her former lawyer Floyd Abrams), according to the Times Miller was not convinced that the release was genuine and uncoerced. After weeks of negotiations between Miller, Libby, their lawyers and Fitzgerald, she apparently thinks so, and is set to testify tomorrow.

Wow. So, the truth is tantalizing close then; we’ll soon learn what Miller knew, and hopefully what Novak knew and what was in those eight redacted pages of the Appeal Court decision. And when Fitzgerald finally has Miller’s testimony — which he has said is the last piece of the puzzle he needs — perhaps we’ll actually find out what the hell Fitzgerald has been so doggedly pursuing in the first place.

It occurs to me that Judith Miller is coming out to a different reality; the post-Katrina reality of a weakened and foundering administration beset with scandal (DeLay, Brownie, Condi’s shoe shopping extravaganza) and an emboldened press. We know that she didn’t get to watch much CNN while in the clink, and despite her visitors and the printed material she was given, she’s probably going to find a lot to digest (God, holy information overload). Wonder how long it will be until she starts writing again, and about what; we still don’t know exactly what she knew or why she knew it (or if any deals were brokered with the prosecutor to secure her release). Let the mysteries unfold! In the meantime, welcome back, Judy Miller. Enjoy the freedom.

Times Reporter Free From Jail; She Will Testify [NYT]