Saga of Richard Pearle
Richard Perle Libel Watch, Week 34
Eight months ago, foreign policy hawk Richard N. Perle vowed to sue investigative reporter Seymour M. Hersh for libel over Hersh’s New Yorker feature, “Lunch With the Chairman.” Perle described the story as “all lies, from beginning to end,” in the March 12 New York Sun. Perle, a leading neoconservative thinker and member of the Pentagon’s Defense Policy Board, told the Sun Hersh had libeled him by falsely implying that was using his Pentagon position for personal financial gain.
But instead of filing a lawsuit in a good ol’ American court, litigation sissy Perle announced his intention to outsource his legal action by suing Hersh in England, where the libel laws favor plaintiffs over defendants (relative to U.S. courts). Scenting the cheap aroma of a bully’s bluff, I double-dared Perle to sue Hersh, predicting that his threatened suit was so completely without merit not even one of those licentious English courts would hear it. Subsequent installments of the Perle Libel Watch hectored Perle for failing to file his suit and chronicled his other potential conflicts of interest as reported in the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, and elsewhere. One member of Congress called for a Hill investigation of Perle because of the regularity with which his business interests collide with his official duties.