Now Richard Perle plans to sue Seymour Hersh for libel in a British court. Atrios **hopes for a **Jeffrey Archer outcome.

Earlier this week, Perle called Hersh “the closest thing American journalism has to a terrorist.” Hersh responded by saying “Forty years ago, he would have called me a communist, and 70 years ago, he would have called me a Jew. It’s the same thing with these people.”

The reason for all this? It appears Hersh had the audacity to question whether there might, perhaps, be the appearance of conflicts of interest between Perle’s role as chairman of the Defense Policy Board, a secretive group that advises Donald Rumsfeld, and the fact that he is a managing partner in Trireme Partners, L.P., a venture capital firm that invests in companies dealing with homeland security.

(A completely coincidental and unrelated aside: I feel that “homeland-security-industrial-complex” is an unwieldy phrase. Any suggestions for alternatives?)

Perle is also a director of Hollinger International Inc., which is an investor in the conservative New York Sun. But that is only mildly interesting when compared to this. I wish these companies were all on the fun interlocking directorates tool that Eszter Hargittai has found.

Of course, über-hawk Perle **has never been very good at PR and has long suffered from foot-in-mouth disease. This, after all, is a man who said **Gerhard Schröder should resign for disagreeing with President Bush.