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August 29, 2006

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Asoe

The famous Bush speech promised to double the size of the CIA, which was done quickly. He also stated the he intended to double the size of Peace Corps in the same sentence. Peace Corps took exception to that and everyone knew Wilson's, Peace Corps volunteer, was a CIA agent. Some have seen her claim files to threaten. She has always been known as very dangerous in the Federal government from DIA to other agencies.

She was leaked because she was too dangerous and this was done during the interview with Wilson on CNN where he claimed he was afraid of her. So, someone leaked and it was probably someone Plame went after in the past, who is still alive.

vnjagvet

Here we go again. Another Post story to get on the right side of history before it's too late. It's relation with Newsweak sometimes comes in handy, doesn't it?

ASOE, you sure do have a way with sarcasm.

Forbes

TM: After several years of covering the Plame Name Blame Game, you've been vindicated, as this has been a big deal about nothing.

The "leaker" was Armitage, and there was no violation of the IIPA or the Espionage Act.

What are the chances that anyone opining otherwise, here on JOM, will weigh in and apologize for their now baseless allegations and/or credit the Minuteman for his astuteness in this episode?

Good job, TM!

clarice

I want to concentrate on what should be done now.
Should Gonzales revoke the appointment?
Should the President pardon Libby?
Should Libby move to dismiss? On what grounds?
Should Fitz be investigated for his misleading affidavit to the Miller Court? For his presser lies?

Should we demand Armitage be called to account in some way?

This has been a rank injustice which proved exceedingly damaging , not only to Libby, but to the Administration as well.

Birkel

Wasn't her cover blown because of a NYT article back in 1998 (or thereabout) when some Boston company was revealed as a front?

Thanks in advance.

Thomas Morrissey
an excuse to engage in some unseemly gloating

You need a Dancing Armadillo,like Goldstein.

Typical dead-tree WAPost c.y.a, months behind the truth,days behind the news.

Anything in the N.Y Times yet?


Slartibartfast

I don't think TM's proven that she wasn't NOC so much as shown that it's very unlikely that she was NOC.

I think Cecil and I (and others) have been making similar points for some time now: Plame's name in a classified document, or even in a classified paragraph, doesn't make her name classified. And even if it was, if her name was revealed by someone who came knew her identity by piecing bits of unclassified information together, there's no crime. If that was the case, the CIA was doing a piss-poor job of preserving her identity.

Slartibartfast

Slight adjustment: I think the INR classification authority point is a very good one, but it's possible that Ford knew of Plame without having been briefed on her.

That aside, I've never, ever seen a document that had multiple classification authorities. That doesn't mean there's no such thing, just that I've never seen one. I'd guess that such things would be far less uncommon in State and CIA than in, for example, the safe of a defense contractor.

Bob

where's jeff... or is it too early for his comedy routine?

clarice

This morning's comedy relief comes from CREW in the Wa Po article(last graph--how far has Wilson fallen?)
"Just because Armitage did this on his own, earlier, doesn't mean that there wasn't a White House conspiracy to 'out' Valerie [Plame] Wilson. We don't think it affects the case," said Melanie Sloan, executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, the group pressing the lawsuit.


Maestro, a chorus of "Just Because", please...

Slartibartfast

Hmmm...let's see how that works: "Just because Vince Foster actually committed suicide, doesn't mean there wasn't a conspiracy by the Clintons to have him snuffed."

Yep. Fits.

Cecil Turner

So by that argument, only offered after the INR memo was produced, an experienced reader of the memo should have been confident that Ms. Plame's identiy was not the information which made that paragraph classified.

It makes a good story, but I doubt any normal reader could've picked it out, even if it were the intent of the classifier. What does stand out is that on July 7th, the day after Wilson's NY Times Op-Ed, the idea that the subject line of the memo ("Niger/Iraq Uranium Story and Joe Wilson) would still be "SECRET" and not releasable to foreign nationals is risible. It's also obvious that the really sensitive part of the memo was the NIE/INR disagreement over the assessment. More detailed commentary on the markings are here, here, and here.

Sue

Well, at least CREW has Jeff's story down for him.

maryrose

Slartbartfast:
What's good for the goose...
Clarice:
I also am very interested in what comes next. I believe some action should be taken pronto. This has been a series of lies from the get-go. Enough is enough, time for Fitz to fold his tent.

Jane

I want to concentrate on what should be done now

Not much can be done because the damage has already happened.

It seems to me that the best thing that can happen (and given all the faux photopgraphy scandals the timing is right) is someone can boil it all down to the bare bone facts about how the left and the media rode this horse to infamy, while hurting Libby, the administration and the country, and how this is just one such example of what the left has been up to.

You are a good candidate for that Clarice, as obviously is TM.

The problem you have to avoid is getting caught up in the minutia that makes one's eyes glaze over.

I'd write it from the Wilson's perspective, as the protagonist, and show how he and his took this country on a muti-million dollar ride in a time of war, capitalizing on BDS, to snag support.

This needs to be back on the front page - because just about everyone has lost interest.

I hope we can rely on Judge Banks to dismiss the civil suit.

Libby's lawyers should also file a motion to dismiss, based on the fact that the entire premise of the charges, as Fitzy outlined in his press conference, has now crumbled. He needs to feel some pressure.

Someone should put Libby (and Powell's) feet to the flame about how they could let Libby hang in the wind while they let the lies go on.

The administration should stay out of it.

Syl

Oh, shoot. I dropped a comment at RLS re the same notion--that the left was crucifying Rove et al over the INR memo but now gives Armitage a pass.

I didn't get it from here, honest. GMTA, or more realistically, Greater and Lesser Minds think Alike. :)

Ranger

Well, of course they are going to give Armitage a pass. He was a "good leaker" who just made a mistake. It's all about intentions and motivations, not outcomes.

clarice

I'm mulling it over, Jane, and all good suggestions are welcome.

The tale has such a Dreyfusian quality to it, maybe Devil's Island Redux..How almost 3/4 of the nation was taken in on this swindle , concocted by an idiotic serial liar, some friends in the Senate and an utterly disreputable press. Maybe it ends with Libby removing a glove and smacking Armitage and Kristof and Wilson and Pincus across their faces or something.

Jeff

Well, at least CREW has Jeff's story down for him.

Now, Sue, that doesn't seem really fair. After emphatically refusing to believe me when I told you, over and over, what my story was, and that it had been my story for months and months, you're now finally accepting that it's my story only in order to say that, sensibly enough, it's been adopted by the Wilsons' lawyers, after their initial, silly assertion suggesting that if Armitage were Novak's first source, he'd just be added to the conspiracy?

Tom

Haven't several lefties long suggested that the INR memo was a red herring, and precisely not a damning bit of evidence as the source for info on Plame? It makes sense that they would say as much, since it's pretty clear neither Libby (whatever David Corn mistakenly says) nor Rove ever saw the INR memo. In the coverage, the INR memo seemed mostly to be used to point the finger at Powell and Fleischer, no?

Ranger

Also, remember that the press itself had the power to end this any time they wanted by simply coming clean. The only one who seems to have actuall had the integrity to do that was Woodward, be even had waited until the Libby indictment was out before publicly coming forward with what he knew, and still wouldn't finger the PoS who stayed silent while others were falsely accused.

Dell

Plame was leaked by Ames. This is why she is known. If you were somehow, possibly, maybe involved in some type in his arrest; she involved herself. The problem was why would she threaten someone maybe involved with the Ames problem, unless she was bad?

Her history regarding working with others, especially other operations officers in Iraq, is obvious. They are all dead.

Foster rumor: If you go to Bill's old house, you might get that he and Hillary were involved a long time ago.

Jane

The tale has such a Dreyfusian quality to it, maybe Devil's Island Redux..How almost 3/4 of the nation was taken in on this swindle , concocted by an idiotic serial liar, some friends in the Senate and an utterly disreputable press.

Jack Kelly does a good job at a start here:
http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2006/08/plame_and_the_bush_lied_meme.html.

What I want is a banner that extends from sea to shining sea, that states the truth that Bush didn't lie, Joe Wilson did, and his lies have prolonged this war, and helped the terrorists. I want people to know that he is an enemy of this country, who is motivated by greed and self interest; and the lap dogs on the left are too stupid to live.

Or something like that.

Patrick R. Sullivan

From David Corn's blog today:

'Conspiracy theorist--moi? Where have I proposed a conspiracy theory?'

For starters in his July 16, 2003 column, where he several times made statements like:

'Did senior Bush officials blow the cover of a US intelligence officer working covertly in a field of vital importance to national security--and break the law--in order to strike at a Bush administration critic and intimidate others?

'It sure looks that way, if conservative journalist Bob Novak can be trusted.'

The book should have been titled; 'Chutzpah'.

paul

Does this mean Joe Wilson implications to the media about Rove's complicity is...gasp...a lie?

If we can't trust Wilson, who can we trust?

Jeff

Does this mean Joe Wilson implications to the media about Rove's complicity is...gasp...a lie?

Wilson lacked knowledge one way or the other at the time about Rove's pre-July 14 conduct, though he knew Rove was pushing the story shortly thereafter. But it turned out that Wilson was right. The two senior administration officials Novak cited for the claim that Wilson's wife was a CIA operative who had suggested Wilson's name for his mission were Armitage and Rove. Plus Rove disclosed the information, unsolicited, to Matt Cooper on July 11.

Rocco

Is RealTeen the link you were looking for?

j wilson

Trust me it was Rove.

It only took me two weeks of 'tea-drinking' in Niger to come to my conclusions about WMD's (sorry I didn't give a written report).

I've been drinking a lot more kool-aid, for a lot more years, here in DC, so my conclusions should be that much more correct.

I won't risk losing my crediblity by not ammending my wife's lawsuit to include Dick Armitage, and his boss, Colin Powell.

vnjagvet

Clarice:

I used to have a form for a Petition For Trial By Mortal Combat.

Were I Libby, I might consider such an action against Armitage and Powell for allowing him to twist slowly in the wind in what I consider to be truly Nixonian fashion.

I agree with Tom that Rove comes through this relatively unscathed, although I am sure he had some deep breathing moments over the past few years.

The real story of all of this is the viciousness of Washington politics fought with the gloves off. But it was a chess match as well. A Presidential election was the real goal of this entire exercise.

The Wilson article was meant to be the beginning of a series of increasingly heavy blows against the administration to undermine its national defense advantage after 9/11, Afghanistan and Iraq.

Remember the "20 point advantage" the MSM was prepared to give the anti-Bush forces.

The Wilson article had a twofold mission. One was to plant the seed that "Bush Lied and People Died". The other was to tempt the Whitehouse into a Watergate-like dirty tricks campaign. One misstep, and it was Watergate all over again. The Dem's finest moment recreated.

It almost worked.

I would like to think that people like Tom, Captain Ed and their regulars helped to foil this little scheme and make it a footnote to history, instead of history itself.

Ranger

Jeff,

I think you are mischaractorizing the Cooper/Rover interaction. Cooper called Rover immidiately after his colaborating author called and talked to Wilson. Then his collaborating author immidiately called Wilson back after the call. Cooper also misrepresented the purpose of the call as being about "Welfare Reform" and the fact that it was a misrepresentaiton is proven by the fact that Cooper didn't even remember that it was the reason he'd given for the call when he was called before the GJ. Finally, Cooper's entire story is compromised because he apparently wrote multiple and controdictory versions of what happened at the time of the events. All in all, it sounds a lot like Wilson, with the help of a couple of friendly reporters were specificly trying to set Rove up for Wilson's later charge. Hardly "unsolicited".

Sue

Now, Sue, that doesn't seem really fair.

Seemed fair to me.

I would like to point out that I was right, and you were wrong. It did matter if Armitage was the original leaker. The left, and MSM, can't figure out what to do with him. Being Republican is just not enough. As you yourself have figured out...recently.

cathyf

Just because Armitage did this on his own, earlier, doesn't mean that there wasn't a State Dept conspiracy to 'out' Valerie [Plame] Wilson.

Just because Armitage did this on his own, earlier, doesn't mean that there wasn't a CIA conspiracy to 'out' Valerie [Plame] Wilson.

Just because Armitage did this on his own, earlier, doesn't mean that there wasn't a French conspiracy to 'out' Valerie [Plame] Wilson.

Just because Armitage did this on his own, earlier, doesn't mean that there wasn't a conspiracy by pink unicorns from outer space to 'out' Valerie [Plame] Wilson.

Yep, check, all of those statements are unarguably true...

Slartibartfast

Plus Rove disclosed the information, unsolicited, to Matt Cooper on July 11.

Unsolicited? Is this the "you heard that too" exchange?

Jeff

Sue - I'll admit it, Rove would have been a bigger prize for lefties. But so you finally believe me that, as I've been saying for months, my working theory of the whole thing is that there was a coordinated effort in OVP and Armitage was not a part of it?

Chants

Per Clarice's request, a "just because":

"Just because the CIA physically stationed Plame at CIA headquarters doesn't mean they didn't take affirmative steps to conceal her affiliation with them"

Well. It's pretty much over, unless something pretty unlikely happens. All that is left is the denumount. Who else did Armitage talk to? How tilted was the investigation to begin with? An just what was in that CIA referral letter?

It's going to be very hard to disabuse 72% of the American public of the propaganda they have been exposed to over the past 3 years without making it look like a Noam Chomsky essay on semiotics. Actually, I exaggerate. It will look nothing like Noam Chomsky's work, but it will be longer than most people will want to spend time with. Plus so many are too invested with the propaganda to let it go.

Thanks everyone for doing all the heavy analysis necessary to keep my modest abilities just sharp enough to follow along for the ride. I really enjoyed it!

Jeff

Is this the "you heard that too" exchange?

Nope. Cooper learned about Wilson's wife from Rove.

Carol Herman

CLARICE: WHERE IS THE JUDGE?

Does this case just run out of the courtroom? No restrictions on licenses? No thoughts on what Americans would expect from a sitting judge? In so public an arena?

Other Tom

"...he knew Rove was pushing the story shortly thereafter." Pushing? You mean, like, calling people up and alerting them to the fact that Plame sent Wilson? Didn't happen. And neither Rove's statement to Novak nor his statment to Cooper was "unsolicited." Remember, it was Cooper who called Rove, not the reverse, and the purpose of the call was to discuss welfare reform. Cooper brought up the Wilson thing.

I want to take this rare opportunity to brag a bit. Back when the "paragraph classification" stuff came out, I made the point in a post here (not as succinctly as the Albany example) that if a paragraph labeled "secret" referred to the fact that there was a coffee shop at 17th and K, that didn't make that info secret.

What I'm wondering is when, and what, we're going to hear from Kristof, Pincus, Waas and the rest.

And as for what is to be done now, I must say that I'm sitting here with steam coming out of my ears. The idea that Armitage and Powell could sit silently by and watch their colleagues endure this nightmare, without ever stepping forward like honorable men, is simply unforgivable. I would hope that shortly after the November elections, either Gonzales or Bush will order that this investigation be terminated and the charges dropped--in short, I don't think he should dignify the charges with a pardon. I believe they have the power to do this, and I think they should do it and let the chips fall where they may. There is simply no valid reason for Fitzgeral to have continued this investigation once the Armitage information was made known to him.

clarice

vnjagvet--I'd love that form.

Actually, I think the second point plan--to induce a Watergate misstep--failed because this is a grownup administration with a unique sense of decency. That didn't save them from being accused of wrongdoing any way . The oppo just assumed everyone was --as they are--sleazebags.

Now, put your fine noodle to work and help me figure out what I should propose be done at this late juncture that doesn't violate anti-dueling laws, PLEASE.

Carol Herman

I'm serious, Clarice.

THE JUDGE HAS TO WRITE SOMETHING UP, DOESN'T HE? Or he stalls to January? Or February? While Scooter Libby just hangs out there?

What would YOU write IF YOU WERE THE JUDGE?

And, if you had to guess; since lots of Americans know law school is not enough; BUT YOU HAVE TO PASS THE BAR. Is the bar just something called "Paddy's?"

Jeff

Yep, check, all of those statements are unarguably true...

Ayup, and there doesn't seem to be any or much evidence for any of them except perhaps the CIA one, if you consider Tenet's role and Harlow's closeness with Tenet. Of course, there's a lot more evidence if you insert OVP in the relevant place. And there's some evidence for the idea that State was going after Wilson too, but not beyond Armitage's conduct.

topsecretk9

Also, remember that the press itself had the power to end this any time they wanted by simply coming clean.

Well THAT'S not going to happen. There is much embarrassment in doing that.

Some>wanted to believe not only Wilson's claims about Cheney, but Wilson's suggestion that any response from the WH should be accepted as nothing other than a "smear campaign" Enter Chris Matthew's and his questionable contribution to the farce with "fair game"

Rick Ballard

Clarice,

Is there any way that Libby could make his wishes known, given his circumstances? If he were able to do so, I would be in favor of whatever he felt was appropriate.

It might be thrilling to think of him turning down the public offer of a Presidential pardon in order to clear his name in court but the truth is that going to court is a roll of the dice - and the dice are shaved in DC.

Without knowing Libby's wishes, I would favor the DoJ not assigning any more cases to Fitzgerald and quietly transferring responsibility for other cases away from him until all that he had left was this farce. Let it roll out until a week before trial and then have the President issue a pardon. Then let the House Judiciary Committee flay Fitzgerald in public for a week concerning ethical impropriety.

As to the rest of the players, Wilsons and journos foremost and Powell and Armitage right behind - I am unaware of anything that can truly damage sewage, so I suppose the best thing is simply to let it naturally degrade.

Sue

I've been saying for months, my working theory of the whole thing is that there was a coordinated effort in OVP and Armitage was not a part of it?

And Armitage just happened to trip into a coordinated effort that he wasn't part of. Yep, I believe you.

Sue

Nope. Cooper learned about Wilson's wife from Rove.

And Novak learned from Armitage. One is part of a coordinated effort the other just a bumbling fool.

ordi

Jeff,

Aren't your teeth getting tired? You keep biting down on the dead stinking "Frog" known as your theory. Give it up! IT IS DEAD!

topsecretk9

Nope. Cooper learned about Wilson's wife from Rove.

Well, that wil sorta hld up at least until trial.

topsecretk9

hid = hold

cathyf
Plus Rove disclosed the information, unsolicited, to Matt Cooper on July 11.
We don't know that. Simply repeating something enough times doesn't make it true.

Rove says he doesn't remember the conversation at all. Cooper's recollections are not particularly believable. Each of them has contemporaneous notes, and neither set of notes supports the claim Jeff makes.

Therefore Jeff is:

a) guilty of the federal felony of bugging the White House in 2003, or

b) really not human but rather a flea in Karl Rove's or Matt Cooper's nose hair, or

c) making shit up.

Charlie (Colorado)

I don't think TM's proven that she wasn't NOC so much as shown that it's very unlikely that she was NOC.

Slarti, having once upon a time been under a non-official cover (thirty years ago, no longer sensitive that I was) I can tell you I'm pretty darn well certain she wasn't. When I was, I could only meet my contact in social settings and we never did it twice in the same place, and I never ever ever saw his office or went anyplace connected. With val driving to CIA Langley on a regular basis, she just wasn't NOC. Just wasn't.

Proving a negative is impossible, but the likelihood she was a NOC is negligable.

Bob

Seems like http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/082906J.shtml>Leopold just can't let this go either!

"This is the first time the man who met Novak on the street has spoken out publicly about his interaction with Novak three years ago. He was interviewed by Truthout several times over the past two months and has requested anonymity for fear of retribution for disclosing his role in the leak investigation. Truthout has confirmed the man's identity with former Ambassador Wilson. He is a former magazine publisher, and currently works as a consultant, mainly with private businesses helping local governments improve their infrastructure - such as building pipelines to improve water flow in one municipality. The man no longer lives in Washington, DC.

[snip]

The man then asked Novak what his thoughts were about former ambassador Wilson. Novak stopped dead in his tracks, looked directly at the man he had just met and said pointedly, "Wilson is an asshole. Let me tell you what really happened. His wife works for the CIA as a weapons of mass destruction specialist and she sent him."

Bob

jeff, I think it's time to put your http://www.stopabductions.com/>thinking cap on!

maxx

there was a coordinated effort in OVP - Jeff

A coordinated effort to do what exactly?

Do you think the Adminstration was supposed to do nothing to counter Joe Wilson's lies? Do you think that Joe Wilson's wife involvement in providing a platform for Joe Wilson's lies wasn't relevant?

And underlying these questions, do you think a 'coordinated effort by the OVP' to counter a liar is wrong?

Or do you believe that Joe Wilson is not a liar?

ordi

Bob,

The TO article just means Val hasn't gotten the price she is asking for concerning her book. Also, they need more p0ublic face time/slime to further their WEAK lawwsuit.

clarice

About Cooper, Jeff..remember the judge has reviewed all the Time documents and has said no matter how Cooper testifies, those documents will impeach his testimony re Libby. (Since Rove wasn't charged we don't know if the same is true, but I'd bet on it.)In a more honest world, he'd be one of those charged.

Rick--I want something stronger. We could revive our demand for an Office of Professional Responsibility investigation into Fitz' conduct. Or we could cut to the chase, demand that Gonzales revoke the appointment and dismiss the complaint.
(I think we should keep Congress out of this.)

I suppose Libby could use this to revive his demand that UGO's identity no longer be hidden, but I don't know that this story adds much to those motions to dismiss he's already filed and federal law on prosecutorial misconduct is so clear that I doubt he can raise it though it's hard to imagine many clearer cases (well, Duke).

I've asked a number of folks for their thoughts and hope all the smarties here can help.
enough already. Time to get Libby off Devil's Island.Please let's put our noggins together.

Wilson's a liar

Look, you guys, don't be so hard on old Jeff. Anyone who can still be convinced that Joe Wilson is truthful can be convinced that there was a Cheney conspiracy to destroy him.

I would just like to remind Jeff once again, that if he really wants to see the results of a White House coordinated effort to destroy somebody who had the proof the President was a liar, just look at Linda Tripp. Seen her in Armani at any Vanity Fair Oscar parties lately?

Tomf

Clarice:

I think that history will show that Fitzgerald's unnecessary investigation hampered the President and Karl Rove far more than we now know.

As far as your suggestions for what should be done next, for me the best one would be an investigation of Fitzgerald and his misleading affidavit to the Miller Court and his lies at the presser. Never have I seen anyone with his authority demonstrate such a disconnect between what was being said and what was actually being done. It was truly incredible.

Thank you.

Sara (Squiggler)

Per Rick's suggestion of issuing a pardon a week before trial ... can a pardon be issued in advance of a trial and conviction?

Clarice -- I want to see Fitz hung by his toes in the public square and disbarred. The lies he told in the presser should be reason enough.

I would then like to see Wilson prosecuted for lying to federal officers and the court if there are depositions from him.

And I want Armitage and Powell called on the carpet, either thru legal channels or thru very strong public condemnation. I am furious about their total lack of honor. Powell in particular, who we heard was so distressed at his loss of face/honor after his UN speech. Well, let him find out what happens now. The man has become just another sleazebag in my book.

And lastly, all charges should be dropped against Libby. The moment Fitz knew he wasn't the first to talk to reporters, he should have stopped there. This is malicious prosecution of the worst type.

And Jeff -- you cannot continue to be taken seriously when you base everything you say on a false premise to start with. You are just going to have to come to terms with the fact that grown up busy men do not behave like high schoolers and that correcting a liar's words is not a conspiracy or a smear. You seem like such a bright guy that it makes one wonder why this is so hard for you to absorb.

And everyone, it should now be clear that not one word contained in Fitzgerald's press conference can be trusted, least of all his conclusions. If I don't see quotes directly from a sworn transcript, I am not going to trust Fitz's characterization of anyone's statements.

topsecretk9

I think someone said yesterday or in the recent past, but that INR memo really sort of screwed Wilson. I bet he was counting on no one making the connection he wasn't CIA picked for his superior intelligence gathering skills, but that his wife helped him get a decent exposure assignment. That's why he felt comfortable enough to lie about Cheney behesting him.

paul

Looks like the progressives chose to wage war(on the WH), based on faulty intelligence.

Dare we say that the evidence that would contradict their claims, was hidden, obscurred, stove-piped, and cherry-picked?

Despite the evidence that was offerred to buttress their case, the left was eventually wrong, and is now incapable of admitting it. How is that different from their critique of the WH?

Ranger

Since we are speculating about how things happened, here is my take on how Rove gets sucked into this.

UGO tells Woodward on June 13th about "Wilson's Wife." That means that even before June 13th that issue was known in State. Grossman hears the rumors flying and knows that a) his boss is a chatty guy, and b) even if his boss doesn't say something State is a leaky place with lots of reporters picking up gossip from lots of people. Grossman knows it is only a matter of time before his buddy Joe is busted in the press, so he gets word to Joe the gig is almost up, time to switch to plan B. Knowing the story is going to get out,

Wilson starts "pushing the story" that the White House is out to get him. By early July pretty much any reporter who is anybody has heard something about "Wilson's Wife". Wilson just has to sit by the phone and wait for a reporter to call him and ask him for a comment on the rumor that his wife sent him to Nigeria. When the call finally comes (almost a month after UGO initially leaked it), Wilson says 'That's a lie. That's just something the Karl Rove cooked up to discredit me. And if you don't believe me, call Rove and see what he says about my wife.'

When the Time crowd contact Wilson, Cooper makes the call to Rove, he simply says, something to the effect of 'Don't get to far out on this. This isn't what Wilson is claiming. His wife had something to do with setting up the trip.'

Now Wilson can go out and say "Rove did it" because he has engineered Rove being asked about it by a reporter and, as a bonus, he manged to get the question asked before Novak's story hit the wire.

Bob

ordi,

Yeah I guess this "friend of Wilson's" will be their lead witness... or maybe that's why Val can't sell the book!


What a bunch of asshats!

Jane

I think that history will show that Fitzgerald's unnecessary investigation hampered the President and Karl Rove far more than we now know.

Boy do I agree with that, starting with dead soldiers. This war has been prolonged by the opinion of the left, who predicated their opposition on the Joe Wilson "Bush lied" meme. In fact I doubt very seriously that most of the nay sayers have a clue that Wilson was the engineer of that sloganeering, and they and Wilson should be held accountable. If the country was solidly behind our efforts, Iraq would have been much easier. As it stands now, half the country is actively working against our success.

And that is the source of my very palpable anger.

vnjagvet

Clarice:

If I am Libby, I would instruct my attorneys to write Wilson's lawyers by Friday, and demand a dismissal of the civil action with prejudice using the magic Rule 11 Language. I would tell them that there are several lawyers in the blogosphere that already have the letter drafted and stored on their laptops.

Simultaneously, I would instruct my lawyers to subpoena and notice the video depositions of Armitage, Corn and Issikoff for next week.

Then I would volunteer you and me to help prep for the depositions, hoping that got us a seat at the table. I would then reactivate my DC Bar membership.

Are you with me.

maryrose

Cathyf:
You've provided very good commentary for today. I vote for option C. in regard to the meanderings of Jeff. One good thing-his posts are shorter but he keeps hanging onto that dead horse of smearing Joe as one of his theories. Jeffy-That dog won't hunt and you can take that to the bank. All will be revealed in time-just in time to invalidate the civil lawsuit-poetic justice.

sbw

Clarice, the real title for your article should be, "Who will clean the Augean Stables?"

The article would have two parts:
1) How the stables were filled.
2) Who's on the sidelines waiting for someone to clean it. [That would include Fitz, various flavors of MSM, Banks, Libby's lawyers, Armitage, Powell, Gonzales, ... or will the army of Davids known as JOM bloggers metamorphose into Hercules]

Jane

Then I would volunteer you and me to help prep for the depositions, hoping that got us a seat at the table. I would then reactivate my DC Bar membership.

Hey! I've been hankering for those depositions since the suit was filed. I'll make mincemeat of them, and they won't even realize it until they read the transcript. It's my forte' - let me in!

Jeff

And Armitage just happened to trip into a coordinated effort that he wasn't part of. Yep, I believe you.

Now, first, Sue, you're changing the issue. I'm not saying you didn't agree with me. You actually refused to believe that my view was my view. As for the substance of it, second, now that you finally believe it is my view, I don't see what's so hard to imagine about the idea that in June-July 2003 there was a lot of activity in the administration around Wilson's increasingly public attacks on the administration, and not all of the activity in the administration was coordinated. Is it really surprising that Armitage might be talking about the fact that Wilson's wife was CIA and so on, and at the same time and separately Libby would be doing the same in an effort to respond to and undemine Wilson?

azredneck

Clarice:
I agree with Jane--the adm should continue to stay out of it.
But any attempt to educate the public should also focus on a condemnation of the tactics used by Fitzgerald, in addition to others discussed above.
Open letter to several lamestream media, plus Fox (Hannity& OReilly??), cc to Gonzalez, Judge and Judicial Committees, both Houses?
I think you should do it, rather than the committee approach. That got very messy quickly.

Slartibartfast
With val driving to CIA Langley on a regular basis, she just wasn't NOC. Just wasn't.

She doesn't have to be. She has to have been NOC recently enough prior to the disclosure. IIRC it was a close thing; she'd last been overseas just about five years prior to Novak's going to print.

maryrose

Jane:
I agree with your assessment and share your anger. The undermining of the war effort was an INTENDED consequence and Wilson et al had some success with it. I say some because they did not succeed in dethroning Bush or getting us to cut and run in Iraq. They underestimated the American electorate on that and repubs are still favored as the stronger party to fight the War on Terror.

clarice

vnjagvet--that's be a nice self-help start for Libby. Go to his site and suggest it .

No reason why the civil suit shouldn't be used in a jujitsu fashion to add to whatever other action gets taken.

Maybe TM should invite Fitz for a day on the Board while we pepper him with questions about his conduct. We can tell him it's a moot court for what he's likely to face.

azredneck, I've tried to do that for 2 years. Unfortunately I do not have a wide audience nor were there enough truth seekers to care. Perhaps if Libby were a kidnapped child beauty queen.....

maxx

Her [Plame's] history regarding working with others, especially other operations officers in Iraq, is obvious. They are all dead. - Dell

Is this correct?????

Bob

Just a thought/concern.... If Powell gets hammered on this, will he then get recruited by the Dems for 2008? Wasn't he being courted back in 2004 by many on the left, after he showed displeasure with the WOT?

Syl

Jeff

Cooper learned about Wilson's wife from Rove

Poor baby, you only have Cooper's word on this. And his words won't hold up in court. Impeachable, says Tatel himself.

Fitz will have to drop the charges involving Cooper.

And I predict it will come out that Armitage also spoke with Judy Miller. Not only did he tell her about Mrs. Wilson, he told her before she spoke with Libby.

So Libby and Miller discussed something Miller already knew.

Fitz will have to drop the charges involving Miller.

So what's left?

Russert!

Syl

Jeff

Cooper learned about Wilson's wife from Rove

Poor baby, you only have Cooper's word on this. And his words won't hold up in court. Impeachable, says Tatel himself.

Fitz will have to drop the charges involving Cooper.

And I predict it will come out that Armitage also spoke with Judy Miller. Not only did he tell her about Mrs. Wilson, he told her before she spoke with Libby.

So Libby and Miller discussed something Miller already knew.

Fitz will have to drop the charges involving Miller.

So what's left?

Russert!

Trial begins in Feb with only the charges involving Russert.

Libby: He told me!
Russert: Did not!
Libby: Did too!
Russert: Did not!

Jeff, it's over baby.

azredneck

Are you serious? Not everyone checks in to AT every morning???
Make a list and I'll pay the postage to mail out the article to whomever.

Syl

sorry for the double. I wrote it in notepad and the mouse didn't select the whole thing.

Syl

I need some coffee.

Because of the impeachability of Cooper's testimony regarding LIBBY his word (and only his word) that Rove told him is also suspect.

(Left that out of the above.)

Wilson's a Liar

Ranger - that's a pretty nice scenario. But it presumes Wilson was smart enough to think up the get-Rove angle and set the whole thing up himself. I don't think he was. But his pals in the Kerry campaign sure were. They were the ones whose asses were hanging out after they peddled Wilson to their friends Nic Kristof and Walter Pincus as the great truth-teller, only to see his story start to unravel as soon as it was published. I think it took a seasoned political operative -- not to mention someone with a personal axe to grind against Karl Rove -- to come up with the idea to finger Rove as a leaker and force Bush to fire him.

And there was certainly someone fitting that description in the Kerry campaign -- someone with much experience selling fake stories to media outlets including the New York Times; someone very close to Mrs. Matt Cooper a/k/a Mandy Grunwald as well as David Corn; someone who Karl Rove denied a White House job in 2001 and subsequent fame and fortune.

My belief is that this person did not even envision Rove prosecuted; his goal was to get Rove fired and disgraced in the middle of the 2004 campaign so John Kerry would be elected. He was fired from the Kerry campaign soon after Joe Wilson was. Not much coincidence there either.

Wilson's a liar

By the way, I hope everyone has seen John Podhoretz' fabulous column today:

About that White House Cabal

Ranger

Two addisional points:

1) people keep saying the investigation should have wrapped up once Fitz knew UGO was the "First Leaker." Unfortunately, Fitz didn't learn that until after he had indicted Libby and given his infamous presser. That put Fitz in a do or die situaion. The only way he can drop the idictment is to admit that he F'ed an important and politically charged investigation. That would be the end of his career. He serves at the pleasure of the President, and I don't see how any president could keep a prosecutor who screwed up this politically important of a case by never bothering to ask UGO what other reporters he talked to and when. And that is assuming incompetence on Fitz's part. It is entirely possible at this point that Fitz deliberately avoided asking UGO what other reporters he talked to specificly to avoid having his theory of the case destroyed, or that UGO obstructed justice and Fitz is refusing to charge him because it would hurt his case against Libby.

2) The ultimate abserdidty of this is that while this entire investigation was going on two groups of people knew the truth, and both remained silent while innocent people were persecuted publicly and legally. Fitz's actions are understandable given the information he had. Libby's story doesn't quite fit and UGO only admitted to talking to reporters in July, after Libby talked to Judy Miller. But, all the reporters who got the information from UGO or other reporters in mid June just sat back and let the frenzy go on rather than coming forward and telling what they knew. They were "prevented" from talking by UGO, who could have ended all of this within weeks if he had simply come forward and admitted who he talked to and why. Integrity is doing the right thing even when it hurts you personally, and UGO and the press have proven they have no integrity.

end of rant

Sue

You actually refused to believe that my view was my view.

Funny, I still believe your view is not your view. You are working towards a conspiracy within the OVP and you keep having all these extra players pop up. Rove for instance. Not in OVP. Card. Not in OVP. McClellan. Not in OVP. Armitage. Not in OVP. Grossman. Not in OVP. Harlow. Not in OVP. Greiner. Not in OVP.

And what about the people actually in OVP? None, including Libby, are known to have told the only reporter who actually wrote a story about what they were conspiring to get written.

This is a 'go figure' moment for me.

Sara (Squiggler)

Clarice -- AT gets alot more readership than you are giving yourself credit for. But, that said, why not write up a comprehensive "suggestion/legal" article and then submit it to all the big blogs, starting with CQ and Protein Wisdeom, Powerline, all the Pajamas Media group, Malkin, Volokh, Althouse, etc. Give anyone with a blog permission to publish your work as a guest author. You are guaranteed to be seen across a wide spectrum and lots of trackbacks from smaller blogs. I would then submit a copy to all the major news outlets, both print and television. I would also submit to Mark Levin who has a voice on NRO as well as his own radio show, ditto for Limbaugh and the various Fox guys with radio shows. Hugh Hewitt as well.

jerry

Hey TM, Rove told Cooper on July 11 2003 that Plame/Wilson's occupation n' stuff would be "declassified soon."

This is before the Novak article was even published. Was Rove referring to the Novak article or to an ongoing process within the WH?

Would Tenet declassify Plame in response to the Wilson op-ed?? Wouldn't Libby also know on July 11 that this declassification was in the works?

Tom Maguire

I think the INR classification authority point is a very good one, but it's possible that Ford knew of Plame without having been briefed on her.

I am extemporizing out of my area of expertise here, but - the point of having the classification authority is that declassification may occur years later.

So even if Ford knew Plame was CIA (for purpoeses of classifying this memo), the real question is, would Ford's successor's successor know that?

Institutionally, Plame was a CIA secret, so proper bureaucratic procedure would have been to keep them in the loop on any future declassification.

OTOH, if the point is that Armitage could have simply asked around to learn of Ms. Plame's status (and maybe he did!), well, yeah. But there does not seem to be any evidence of that.

clarice

I am convinced this was hatched at the May 2003 Senate Democratic Polcy Committee, the minutes for which have vanished. It was there Wilson testified and was introduced to Kristof. It was there that Wilson changed his tune from a Scowcroftian do nothing and it will be better to an enemy. Rockefeller was a key figure and Wilson and the politicization of the Senate intel committee were part and parcel of his plan to stop the war. And when that didn't work he made his flight to Syria to warn the enemy we were coming. And when that failed he was surely behind the NSA leaks.

Was it all just politics? Or was he working to protect the Rockefeller financial interests in the ME? Was it, in other words no war for oil?

I'd give a lot to get my hands on the minutes of that meeting.(The next meeting's minutes are online. The star witnesses were the execrable lying VIPS and a press conference peddling their lies followed.)

Syl

Jeff

LOL

And there's some evidence for the idea that State was going after Wilson too, but not beyond Armitage's conduct.

Yeah, Armitage's conduct was benign. He merely outed a covert agent to go after Wilson and thereby put our country in jeopardy!

What, pray tell, do you think State could have done to go after Wilson beyond Armitage's conduct?

Oh, wait, that's what the OVP was doing--getting the word out on the NIE to show Wilson's claims were false.

Great Banana

Jeff,

As for the substance of it, second, now that you finally believe it is my view, I don't see what's so hard to imagine about the idea that in June-July 2003 there was a lot of activity in the administration around Wilson's increasingly public attacks on the administration, and not all of the activity in the administration was coordinated.

It is not that it is hard to imagine, it's just that absolutely no evidence actually support this theory, while the evidence supports that there was no there, there, aside from Armitage "leaking" the info.

For instance, it is easy for me to imagine that the dems know full well that they tend to strengthen our enemies by continuously calling for an immediate withdrawal from Iraq, but that they don't care about America so much as power. And, I have as much evidence to support this as you have to support your theory. More, actually.

so, if we are basing such things ENTIRELY on our partisan biases, and imagining the worst of the other side, then yes, your view makes perfect sense.

If, however, we can remain somewhat reasonable, rational and objective, then your theory becomes more and more laughable.

And, for the record, I'm sure you believe fully in your theory and that no evidence or argument will ever change your mind, from here to eternity.

To everyone else - we need to work on passing a law that gets rid of "special prosecutors" or "independent counsels" forever. It is never good to give someone pretty much unfettered power and money to investigate and prosecute, with no oversight and no accountability - even to the electorate. If this case does not demonstrate the wastefulness and abuses of such things . . .

Some form of ethical charge should be lodged against Fitz. He had absolutely no reason to go forward after learning that Armitage was the "leaker" and, even more problematic, that no crime had been committed. How do you continue a criminal investigation after determining that no crime had been committed? it boggles the mind, and Fitz really needs to be disciplined in some way for this - I'm thinking disbarrment. This was nothing more than a Star Chamber.

- GB

cathyf

Ranger, I think that you give unwarrented credibility to Cooper's story. What we have as evidence is that Cooper called Rove and asked him something along the lines of "aren't Wilson's accusations getting to you?" Which is a completely reasonable and plausible thing to have happen -- Rove is the white house political expert, and asking him this question is a totally reasonable thing for a Time magazine white house correspondent to ask.

Now beyond that, we have nothing, or at least nothing particularly believable one way or the other. Cooper claims that Rove then volunteered that Wilson was sent by Wilson's wife. Rove claims that he doesn't remember the conversation at all, but apparently wrote an email about it to Hadley at the time. Rove's email says that he warned Cooper not to believe Wilson, and that Tenat was going to have an announcement later that day with information, and not to "get too far out front" of the story. Rove's email says nothing at all about Mrs. Wilson, and the Tenat announcement didn't mention her either.

So as far as what we don't know,

1) We don't know whether Cooper already knew about Mrs. Wilson before the phone call.

2) We don't know whether Mrs. Wilson came up at all in the phone call.

3) If Mrs. Wilson did come up, we don't know whether Cooper brought it up or Rove brought it up.

4) We don't know what Rove said or what Cooper said about Mrs. Wilson.

5) We have all assumed that the essence of the communication between Rove's lawyer and Cooper's colleague is that V. Novak told Luskin that Cooper was claiming Rove told him about Plame. Perhaps we are wrong. Instead of, or in addition to, the communication in that direction, perhaps there was valuable information flowing the other way -- perhaps Luskin told V. who told Cooper that Rove had not the f***ing foggiest clue what had been said in the conversation, so that Cooper went into the grand jury room knowing that he could make up pretty much whatever story he wanted and no one could prove it if he chose to lie.

One thing both Cooper and Rove agree on is Rove's advice not to let one's analysis get too far out front one's factual knowledge. It's remarkably good advice.

clarice

Sara, thanks, but my problem right now is not so much how to get the story out but what to ask for.

azredneck, go to American Thinker, hit search, type in Clarice Feldman and you will find a plethora of articles about how flawed this case and investigation were The two Potemkin articles are perhaps the most extensive over vuews.

I sound like a broken record, but if Fitz was looking for the first to tell, there was no way he could do that within the DoJ regs for questioning reporters. If he thought otherwise, he's an idiot. If he didn't think that, his claim that the testimonial variances re Libby warranted prosecution because he was "the first to tell" is a post hoc rationalization to cover a fraudulent search.

Wilson't a liar

Ranger - you got the one thing that makes me angriest about this. I think there are at least a dozen reporters and editors in Washington who sat on this for three years. They also sat on their own knowledge that Joe Wilson was a narcissistic gasbag who was lying out of his ass from Day One. They simply enjoyed the show of Wilson making the hated George Bush look bad. They were sick of the President's seeming invulnerability and had been looking for months for a charge that would stick. THEY are the ones guilty of conspiracy in this case. They allowed their colleagues who did not know the truth to start the "Bush lied" fire and then fan the flames.

Now, we see a poll this week saying that when people are asked to use one word to describe the President, "liar" is the second-most cited word. In 2004, the most cited word in this poll was "honest." What else has the President been accused of lying about? Now you tell me this whole rotten episode hasn't had any impact. It may even end up the proximate cause of the Republicans losing their majority in the House this fall! There is no way this rotten record built up over three years can be corrected in the minds of that many voters by November.

Ranger

cathyf,

You are correct. I am probably going too far in splitting the difference between their two stories. The fact that Rove said in his e-mail that he didn't take the bate does indicate he didn't mention "Wilson's Wife."

Chants

"'With val driving to CIA Langley on a
regular basis, she just wasn't NOC. Just
wasn't.'

She doesn't have to be. She has to have
been NOC recently enough prior to the
disclosure. IIRC it was a close thing;
she'd last been overseas just about five
years prior to Novak's going to print."
(Slartibartfast)

Sort of. Driving to Langley everyday will not nullify her covert status as defined by the IIPA, but it will cause huge problems in proving one of the essential elements of the IIPA: that the United States is taking affirmative measures to conceal the covert agent’s intelligence relationship to the United States.

Tme for antoerh just because. Just because the CIA stationed Plame at CIA headquarters, where they allowed her to drive to and from every day, does not mean they didn't try to hide her connection to CIA headquarters.

Wait. I already did that one.


sbw

Wilson's a liar: I think there are at least a dozen reporters and editors in Washington who sat on this for three years. They also sat on their own knowledge that Joe Wilson was a narcissistic gasbag who was lying out of his ass from Day One.

You forget that reporters don't make judgments, except for the judgments they make.

Wilson's a liar

Clarice - we have a new Attorney General right now; shouldn't we simply ask him to fire Fitzgerald immediately? His entire indictment is now in shambles and his press conference was arguably full of statements he knew to be lies. He should also recommend a pardon for Libby. While I would rather see the charges dropped altogether, a good political compromise to me would be to fire the prosecutor now, leave the charges in place, then have the President wait until the day after the election and pardon Libby.

I would not even be opposed to appointment by Gonzalez of a replacement prosecutor, but one with clear reporting responsibility back to the AG. I believe, as you do, that a new prosecutor would almost immediately realize he or she had no case, and would drop the charges against Libby and close up shop.

Dale in Atlanta

Tom: I literally handled THOUSANDS of CLASSIFED Documents, Books, Messages, etc., during my two plus decades around the Intel Community, and I just don't know where you are getting your information, nor some of your experts!

IF a book, or message, or cable, or whatever, carries a TS clasification, that's the overall classification of that particular piece of paper.

It does not mean, that it is the classification of EVERYTHING in that paper, but the over all classification.

You could, have, for example, 5 paragraphs in the document that were Confidential, 3 that were Secret, and 1 that was Top Secret, and the overall classfication, thus, would be TS. You could, conceivably have a paragraph or two, that were marked UC, unclassified.

BUT, when you get to the paragraph level, since it is obviously NOT possible, to classify every word, or sentence, that is where your experts are wrong!

IF Valerie Plame's name/status was in a Paragraph marked S (Secret); that means, that ENTIRE paragraph was considered SECRET, EVEN if it mentions that Albany was the capital of NY!

EVEN IF..., yes, EVEN IF!

And it is NOT up to the READER, to decide, that that, or ANY piece of information, in that PARTICULAR paragraph, was NOT Secret, and thus "releasable"!

You just can't do it; otherwise, every person, who had access to, and consumed any Classified document, would be making a judgement call, on any given classifed Paragraph, and breaking it down, and deciding what inside that paragraph, was Classified or not, and then deciding if they were allowed to talk about it or not!

End result, TOTAL Chaos!

Again, the READER of ANY Classified Document, does NOT have the RIGHT, to decide that any piece of classified/marked information, is "releaseable".

So, if Armitage, saw Plame's name, in a Secret paragraph, in a TS document, and he "blabbed" about it, he was violating ALL Rules/Laws covering Classification, and he should be prosecuted!

I know MANY cases, of people in the Intel Community, who decided to blab, or accidently blabbed, or whatever, and their careers were TERMINATED!

End of story, and they had NO Recourse!

The ONLY person who has the right, to release ANY classified information, in ANY Classified Document, is the Classification Authority, on that particular Document!

And, if any reader wants to Declassify any part of it, they have to ask Permission, FIRST.

To blab, or declassify, without that permission, is a violation of law! Even if it was the capital of NY as Albany!

That's a fact!

So, Armitage, is guilty of leaking/blabbing classified information, no matter the source of Plame's name/identity, the confusion over the classification authority, whatever!

Trust me, I saw many careers end, just over that very same thing!

topsecretk9

LEOPOLD....

IF his newest source is real (as in, not make believe ) doesn't that sort of vindicate HIM of his previous faulty reporting, as this newest pretty much confirms that Joe Wilson's has always been the primary source of JL reporting?- rather Wilson was the "story" editor.

clarice

Sara, thanks, but my problem right now is not so much how to get the story out but what to ask for.

azredneck, go to American Thinker, hit search, type in Clarice Feldman and you will find a plethora of articles about how flawed this case and investigation were The two Potemkin articles are perhaps the most extensive over vuews.

Wilson's a liar, why not just ask that Gonzales fire Fitz and have the Department move to dismiss the case? It's based on so many false premises and on such a phony investigation it should not stand.

Sara (Squiggler)
1) people keep saying the investigation should have wrapped up once Fitz knew UGO was the "First Leaker." Unfortunately, Fitz didn't learn that until after he had indicted Libby and given his infamous presser.

Ranger -- I don't think this can be true. He already know by the time of the presser that the investigation had revealed that the original crime did not exist. He knew that because the leak was inadvertent/innocent. He surely had talked to Novak, who would have testified that Libby was not one of his sources. And there were just too many others who already knew that it was not Libby, so as far as I'm concerned, the presser was just one big pack of lies and nothing said that day can be trusted.

Slartibartfast

So even if Ford knew Plame was CIA (for purpoeses of classifying this memo), the real question is, would Ford's successor's successor know that?

No, that wasn't my point. If Ford knew Plame's identity through channels, then he'd have had to have been briefed. And then, possibly (as you've suggested), he'd have not been able to mention her in a CIA context in any document without citing the proper declass authority for that bit of knowledge. That's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about Ford perhaps discovering Plame's identity through the now-pervasive grapevine, and unknowingly publishing it without proper portion-marks.

After all, who'd be able to tell him, other than those who've already been briefed?

Charlie in Colorado, since you're coming from some position of authority here, is the identity of a NOC normally classified TS-codeword?

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Wilson/Plame