Thursday, November 10, 2005

Here’s Your Hat, Judy…

Judith Miller has “retired” from the New York Times.

Bill Keller, the executive editor, announced the move to the staff in a memorandum yesterday, saying, “In her 28 years at The Times, Judy participated in some great prize-winning journalism.”

In a statement, Arthur Sulzberger Jr., publisher of The Times, said: “We are grateful to Judy for her significant personal sacrifice to defend an important journalistic principle,” adding, “I respect her decision to retire from The Times and wish her well.”

Ms. Miller, 57, said in an interview that she was “very satisfied” with the agreement and described herself as a “free woman,” free from what she called the “convent of The New York Times, a convent with its own theology and its own catechism.”


Under the agreement, Ms. Miller retired from the newspaper, and The Times printed a letter she wrote to the editor explaining her position. Ms. Miller originally demanded that she be able to write an essay for the paper’s Op-Ed page challenging criticisms made of her by some on the staff. The Times refused that demand – Gail Collins, editor of the editorial page, said, “We don’t use the Op-Ed page for back and forth between one part of the paper and another” – but agreed to publish her letter.

In that letter, published in The Times today under the headline “Judith Miller’s Farewell,” Ms. Miller said she was leaving partly because some of her colleagues disagreed with her decision to testify in the C.I.A. leak case. “But mainly,” she wrote, “I have chosen to resign because over the last few months, I have become the news, something a New York Times reporter never wants to be.”

Is it true that she and Terrell Owens may do a farewell tour together? They could call it “Egomanics on Ice.”