A Partial Vindication

The North trial ends with an equivocal verdict -- and many unanswered questions

Some questions are so fraught with political ambiguity that a criminal trial cannot answer them completely. One such conundrum: Who should be held accountable for the Iran-contra affair? Last week a jury in Washington rendered a judgment on retired Marine Lieut. Colonel Oliver North. But it was a verdict equivocal enough for both the defendant and the prosecutor to hail it. North proclaimed a "partial vindication" because he was found not guilty of nine felony charges. Prosecutor John W. Keker asserted that North's convictions on three other counts demonstrated "the principle that no man is above the law."

They were both...

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