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October 18, 2005

Comments

kim

What would be the point of the White House leaking her covertness rather than her involvement and his lying? The covertness, though technically true and possibly unknown to the White House, has always been Joe's gig. From the beginning she has been the red herring Joe dragged around to distract people from his lies.

Kids, I just smoked your mama.
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kim

JayDee, I got another trillion esoteric labyrinths to drag you through if it will take that to show you the truth.
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Cecil Turner

John Hannah . . . was named as a target of Fitzgerald's probe.

Does that mean "received a target letter"? History suggests early disclosures like this are often correct (even from sources like Enquirer). Is Raw Story at all reputable?

Those close to the investigation said in June 2003, Hannah was given orders by higher-ups in Cheney’s office to leak Plame’s covert status . . .

Does that mean "leak the fact that Plame works at CIA," or "leak covert CIA officer's identity"? The way it's written implies the latter, but the verbiage seems odd.

On the other hand, Hannah may be Novak's source - described as serious and not a gunslinger but he is from the WH so not how Novak described him.

Doesn't the VP work out of the Old Executive Office Building?

CaseyL

JayDee - This will turn out to be a real blessing for America only if it awakens the apathetic 50% - the ones who don't vote, who are always the "Don't Know/Don't Care" respondants to polls - that "citizenship" means more than not (frequently) breaking (any big) laws.

I hope there is some kind of awakening. If the American Experiment is to last another generation, we have got to isolate the people who comprise Bush's irreducible 30% from the body politic altogether. They're unsalvageable, irreclamable poison.

cathyf
Those close to the investigation said in June 2003, Hannah was given orders by higher-ups in Cheney’s office to leak Plame’s covert status.
Interesting claim, since the data so far is that what the "leakers" (other than Wilson) were "leaking" was her non-covert status.

Well that would certainly qualify as the weirdest case of incompetence in a case of many weird incompetences. (See what a mess you make when you try to live a triple life? ;-) ) Or maybe it's just wrong...

cathy :-)

Cheez-Wiz

"but he is from the WH so not how Novak described him."

Hannah was on loan to Cheney from State, and look how Judy agreed to ID Libby: "former Hill staffer."

kim

What are the relative growth rates of the 30% and the hard left's irreducible 18%?

And which group predominates in the 100 fastest growing counties in the US?

And what do you think of SS as a long term political demographic issue?
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kim

This is Hannah rawly spun. Aren't we used to it yet? Who is not spinnig? Well, Fitz for one. Well, the White House for another.
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Jim E.

Leaking that Plame worked at the CIA has EXACTLY the same result as leaking she is a covert CIA agent. Legally, there is a difference, due to the 1982 law, but not in the real world. If it blew her cover, it blew her cover.

As candidate Bush promised in 2000, his administration wouldn't merely do what was legal, but what was right. I guess that campaign promise is inoperative?

Jim E.

The White House "isn't" spinning? Good one.

JayDee

Nice job, kim, demonstrating the noble Party Before Country ethics of the Goopers. Is there a word for party loyalty masquerading as patriotism?

Cheez-Wiz

The silence from the White House is not good news. To quote Anonymous Liberal:

"Where are the stories exculpating Cheney? Why does no one appear to be doing any damage control whatsoever on Cheney's behalf? How is it that we still have no idea what Cheney's defense is? Where are the anonymous quotes from "sources familiar with the investigation" indicating that Cheney never ordered Plame's identity leaked? Last week, we saw a number of stories that laid out what will surely be Bush's defense, i.e., that Rove was never fully candid with him. Where are the corresponding stories regarding Libby's conversations with Cheney? Isn't the silence almost deafening at this point?"

kim

It was right to oppose Wilson's disinformation. That it exposed Valerie coincidentally will not cause a jury to find criminality if the covertness were irrelevant or sham, or unknown.

The overiding duty of a prosecutor is to see that justice is done. I am sure enough of the justice of this matter to believe(have faith) that Fitz will not find criminality in the White House actions. Whether or not he finds it elsewhere, I don't know, I just hope.
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Geek, Esq.

Is Raw Story at all reputable?

It's trying to become the Drudge of the left. They're a bit sensationalist, but when they're wrong it's a matter of exaggeration as opposed to completely missing the mark.

They've had a bit of a hot streak on the Plame investigation, so I'm somewhat inclined to believe them.

Good point about the Veepies working out of the OEOB.

kim

JayDee, your bias won't allow you to see my point. The interests of America lie with the Press and the Intelligence Service not being disinformational. Party has little to do with it except that, in this case, the Republican Party is the subject and object of the disinformation.

I've been independent since they invented it.
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Geek, Esq.

TM has been on the ball with John Hannah since last year.

Jim E.

Geek,
Interesting about RawStory. I've only been clicking on them in recent weeks for Plame stuff, so I don't really know about it too well, or how trustworthy they are. I am wondering why this story isn't hitting the wires by now. I'll continue to remain skeptical.

BurbankErnie

as with AD, MemoGate and all of the rest.

A personal attack on that Pussy Bill Kristol does not equal "I Love Bush". A serious conversation does not include personal attacks on non-high profile Talking Heads. I do not understand what I said that qualifies as someone who is Party over Patriotism. I would appreciate the qualifier JayDee or Jim E., or else STFU (no explanation needed

Cheez-Wiz

I think we could reach bipartisan agreement that Kristol is a pussy, Burbank.

velveeta loaf

"Where are the stories exculpating Cheney? "

Doesn't someone need something to be cleared from first?

Cheez-Wiz

Don't make fromage look stupid, Velveeta.

Where is Cheney's pro-active defense? Why isn't he on TV threatening to smash scrotums for even daring to drag his name into it?

Cheez-Wiz

I mean there's speculation on the U.S. News wire that Cheney may resign!?

Like where is the asskickery?

TexasToast

">http://www.usnews.com/usnews/news/articles/051018/18whwatch.htm?track=rss/"> Rumors at US News . Sumthin's up.

topsecretk9

I thought the daily news story that generated all this was sourcing DNC?

Berend de Boer

HAi Roger,

The terms of the contracts are accessible if you click on "Contracts Rules & Info", right hand side if you're using the new ui. For these contracts the rules are terribly unhelpful, but TradeSports just send a clarification to a fellow trader:

"The contracts are listed on the possibility of Rove/Libby being indicted
on any charge resulting from the investigation into the leaking of a CIA
Agents identity. It can be said in all fairness that a charge of perjury
is a result of this investigation (al beit indirectly).
The listed contracts do not specifically state that they must be
indicted on a charge of revealing the identity of a covert CIA officer.
Once a related charge occurs within the stated time frame the
contract(s) will expire at 100.

Naturally it is not possible for the exchange to list all possible
future charges (nor did we) but should the occasion arise any charge
shall be looked at the time.

Please keep in mind that as with all contracts on the exchange these too
are bound by Contract Rule 1.9 - Unforeseen circumstances."

Geek, Esq.

I thought the daily news story that generated all this was sourcing DNC?

No.


At least one source and one reporter who have testified in the probe said U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald is pursuing Cheney's role in the Valerie Plame affair.

""They have got a senior cooperating witness - someone who is giving them all of that," a source who has been questioned in the leak probe told the Daily News yesterday."


Cecil Turner

They've had a bit of a hot streak on the Plame investigation, so I'm somewhat inclined to believe them.

It sounds plausible, but I don't know what to make of that "covert identity" bit. Also not sure what to make of Hannah cooperating, nor why he shouldn't. I still think the key is knowledge of covert status, and the answer was too fuzzy to be much help.

Another head-scratcher is why his name wasn't mentioned in Miller's testimony. Surely even if he was actively cooperating, Fitz would want to check his story with Miller. (Assuming they talked, which seems likely if they're as close as E&P suggested.)

Cheez-Wiz

Yes-but remember Miller said she couldn't recall her second source.

Lesley

"It also seems to me any useful information at Tradesports would be the result of insider trading. Anybody know which way Novak's betting? (And his testimony still hasn't leaked? Inconceivable!)" - Cecil Turner -

Mr. Turner, God love you. You have this incredible insight which always seems to lead you (and then the rest of us) to the essence of the deal. Would be interesting to know all the names or "insider" associations of those trading. Would the media hype/ or plant stories to effect positions at Tradespots? If that ever happened I'd be shocked, I tell you, shocked.

Geek, Esq.

Also not sure what to make of Hannah cooperating, nor why he shouldn't. I still think the key is knowledge of covert status, and the answer was too fuzzy to be much help

Hannah is cooperating because he's essentially on his own--he won't get the rightwing army riding to his defense like DeLay did or Rove would. He'll pay his own legal fees, and he'd be serving the time.

One thing to keep in mind about a conspiracy prosecution is that the knowledge and intent of one co-conspirator can be imputed to all of them.

Note also that two acts of obstruction of justice by members of a conspiracy or enterprise equals a pattern of racketeering.


topsecretk9

the origins. Consider the source

"...According to the Democratic National Committee, a majority of the nine members of the White House Iraq Group have been questioned by Mr Fitzgerald...."

http://msnbc.msn.com/id/9732284/

Cheez-Wiz

You're disputing that at least 5 of the 9 members of the WHIG have been questioned by Fitzgerald?

velveeta loaf

It's not that a majority of WHIG's were interviewed that is the problem, it's that this whole Cheney, Hannah crap is coming from the DNC as part of the WHIG item. It's kinda funny. The nervous guys (e.g. Howie Dean) are spinning up a storm.

topsecretk9

No I am not disputing, I am pointing out the DNC talking points as the genesis of spin, I mean reporting

topsecretk9

I think this is what Kim would call the equivalent of "Fortunate Son"

kim

That US News article is more a marker of elevated suspense than elevated targets.
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topsecretk9

Be careful what you wish for...VP Rice would be a formidable opponent of Senator C.

Cecil Turner

Hannah is cooperating because he's essentially on his own--he won't get the rightwing army riding to his defense like DeLay did or Rove would. He'll pay his own legal fees, and he'd be serving the time.

I'm not sure I buy that one. A good part of the recently-lamented "irreducible 30%" are, like me, hawks who are stuck with the GOP. If Rove or Libby (or Cheney, for that matter) are intentionally outing agents for retaliation, their support is gonna get mighty thin, mighty fast. The reason it hasn't so far is because it's not very plausible. (And if it's just a case of Wilson playing leak games and his wife's mostly administrative cover getting blown from collateral damage, as opposed to intentional abuse of power, too bad.)

Note also that two acts of obstruction of justice by members of a conspiracy or enterprise equals a pattern of racketeering.

So far, I'm unaware of any credible allegations of witness tampering, or anything similar. The reported discrepancies in testimony aren't going to get it (though Libby's perfectly weird letter to Miller might be grounds for anything from an obstruction charge to an insanity plea).

Jim E.

So, Cecil, you're okay with accidentally outing agents, and then lying about it?

topsecretk9

Cecil

(though Libby's perfectly weird letter to Miller might be grounds for anything from an obstruction charge to an insanity plea).

All lawyers, including Fitzgerald, were listening in when Libby spoke with Miller. Additionally, Tate called Fitzgerald to consult on communications between Miller and Libby. The letter was dispatched for the world to see, something Libby or his lawyer did not have to do, especially considering the cryptics. The letter was used in questioning something Libby and lawyer would assume to be.

This is all seems to odd on its own. I have a feeling that Fitzgerald knew of the contents, which leads me to believe this weird letter was intentional.

Who knows, but I don't see a lawyer releasing the letter.

topsecretk9

Cecil

Another note on that...the reason Miller went to jail, as she said herself today, was to avoid a fishing expedition into her other confidential intelligence sources. Afterall, this has been the wrangling of a few journos involved. This notion of needing personal waiver must of been an obvious absurd spectacle to Fitzgerald

Jim E.

David Corn's blog has posted some third (and maybe fourth-hand) rumors from people with ties to the White House. Short-version: they expect many indictments, but are hoping Rove isn't one of them. The number 22 -- as in possible number of people involved -- came up again.

Geek, Esq.

So far, I'm unaware of any credible allegations of witness tampering, or anything similar. The reported discrepancies in testimony aren't going to get it (though Libby's perfectly weird letter to Miller might be grounds for anything from an obstruction charge to an insanity plea).

Lying to investigators = obstruction. Just ask Martha.

cathyf
Leaking that Plame worked at the CIA has EXACTLY the same result as leaking she is a covert CIA agent. Legally, there is a difference, due to the 1982 law, but not in the real world. If it blew her cover, it blew her cover.
Complete utter hysterical nonsense. Nobody would have noticed that Mrs. Wilson was anything other than a non-covert CIA analyst if Joe Wilson hadn't gotten Corn to write the story about how the White House was persecuting them. (Well, except of course the Russians and the Cubans, and anybody that the Russians and the Cubans had told, since they had known for years. They probably already knew that Valerie had moved over to the non-covert side, since all you need to do to find that out is to check the license plates on cars going into Langly and other known CIA office buildings, and/or you follow the CIA shuttle bus back to the Rosslyn metro stop and then follow the CIA employees home and look up their addresses in the reverse phone book. Oh, and you know where all of the offices are by following the shuttle bus around.)

If every CIA employee's employment was secret, from analysts to janitors to the DCI, they'd all be living in cardboard boxes within walking distance of a shuttle stop. You need an employer to rent an apartment, get a mortgage, get a car loan, etc. If you are a non-covert CIA employee then your employer is the CIA and that is public. You want to go arrest everybody who ever rented an apartment to a CIA analyst for "blowing" the analyst's "cover"?

cathy :-)

Geek, Esq.

A good part of the recently-lamented "irreducible 30%" are, like me, hawks who are stuck with the GOP. If Rove or Libby (or Cheney, for that matter) are intentionally outing agents for retaliation, their support is gonna get mighty thin, mighty fast.

The fiscal conservatives, limited government, and 'governmental reform' rightwingers are all standing by Tom "No Fat, but Plenty of Abramoff" DeLay. I'll believe that the hawks will leave Libby or Rove twisting when I see it.

Cecil Turner

you're okay with accidentally outing agents

Whose husbands are making CIA trips and then writing NYTimes op-eds about the mission (which just happen to be misleading and support enemy propaganda in wartime)? Yeah, my stress level on that one is pretty low.

kim

It was either outrageously foolish of them(him?) or deliberate. And I believe Fitz is deliberating that point now.
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Jim E.

"support enemy propaganda in wartime"

You're insane.

topsecretk9

Cecil---

no you are not

Cecil Turner

The fiscal conservatives, limited government, and 'governmental reform' rightwingers are all standing by Tom "No Fat, but Plenty of Abramoff" DeLay.

What, did they accept millions in illegal campaign contributions (some from foreign sources) and then decide the solution was more campaign finance reform? I really don't have much time for Delay, but the last time I looked at the case (not recently), it looked like Ronnie Earle was chasing indictments for political effect. (Which he got, at least for now.)

CaseyL

Yeah, my stress level on that one is pretty low.

Quite aside from the unsupported, though perennial, charge that Wilson's Op-Ed was 'misleading,' much less that it 'support[ed] enemy propaganda in wartime' (good one, cece!)...

...how does that justify outing his wife and her agent network? A

Creepy Dude

CT's brain is like an Oreo where the chocolate part is penetrating insight and the white whatever-it-is is paleocon paranoia.

But you can count on him to be on the right side in the end. Whether he'll have to switch sides I guess we'll know soon.

topsecretk9

Ron Earle can't find his evidence.

Meanwhile,

"tell that to Martha Stewart"

Martha is the niwit that put herself in jail...admit you lied and we will give you a fine...it is not rocket science.

cathyf
you're okay with accidentally outing agents
Well, no, I think that it's pretty terrible that Joe Wilson accidentally outted his wife by telling David Corn that she was covert and then having Corn blab it all over the universe. But I certainly don't believe that anybody could prosecute Wilson successfully for it. I'm certainly unconvinced that it was deliberate and that he's lying when he says he thought Novak had already outted her. That's the one place where his story is completely reasonable and plausible.

cathy :-)

velveeta loaf

Yes, Cheez Wiz I am sure Cheney will call a press conference shortly to do as you suggest.

You are an angry little Frumunda Flavored Wiz for being so sure about the WH guilt in all of this.

topsecretk9

Have to say, I am liking the nice little ring to "Vice President Rice"...could we get another scandal if this one doesn't work?

Cheez

I'm a blue-veined Gorgonzola baby-stinky and expensive and the White House is going down!

Cecil Turner

Quite aside from the unsupported, though perennial, charge that Wilson's Op-Ed was 'misleading,' much less that it 'support[ed] enemy propaganda in wartime'

The misleading parts include conflating the documents with the trip, pretending he debunked African uranium, misrepresenting how he was selected, and the false charge of twisting intelligence. As for that supporting enemy propaganda, "lied into war" is hardly a new theme. Check out this cute little propaganda poster from WWII.

windansea

Casey sez

Quite aside from the unsupported, though perennial, charge that Wilson's Op-Ed was 'misleading,'

dude...it wasn't misleading at all...we're all just jealous and want one of those 8 month in the future niger document reading crystal balls

windansea

Harriet Miers for VP!!!!

topsecretk9

Left is showing a little remorse:

As Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald mulls possible charges in the Valerie Plame investigation, the gloating in liberal enclaves like Manhattan, Oberlin, and Arianna's dining room has swelled to a roar. Opponents of the Bush administration are anticipating vindication on various fronts—justice for their nemesis Karl Rove, repudiation of George W. Bush's dishonest case for the Iraq war, a comeuppance for Chalabi-loving reporter Judith Miller of the New York Times, and even some payback for the excesses of independent counsels during the Clinton years.

Hold the schadenfreude, blue-staters. Rooting for Rove's indictment in this case isn't just unseemly, it's unthinking and ultimately self-destructive. Anyone who cares about civil liberties, freedom of information, or even just fair play should have been skeptical about Fitzgerald's investigation from the start. Claiming a few conservative scalps might be satisfying, but they'll come at a cost to principles liberals hold dear: the press's right to find out, the government's ability to disclose, and the public's right to know....

...Losing a sense of proportion, and of reality, is an occupational hazard when arguing about politics. But Joseph Wilson's accusation that administration officials outed his wife to punish him for speaking up was never really credible. And by now, a small mountain of evidence points toward a more plausible, nondiabolical motivation for the accidental blowing of Plame's cover. In her first-person account in the Times, Judith Miller indicates that Libby's motive in talking to her about Wilson and his wife was the fight between the White House and CIA over whose fault it was that Bush had included faulty intelligence about Saddam's pursuit of African uranium in his 2003 State of the Union address. That blame game was morphing into a larger public dispute about the administration's claims that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction. Bush officials were in the middle of an argument in which they were largely wrong, and which they lost, but in which they thought they were right and were trying to win.

In that context, Libby's comments don't look anything like retaliation against Joe Wilson—especially now that we know that Libby first mentioned Wilson and his wife to Judith Miller three weeks before Wilson went public with his op-ed piece. As for Rove, so far as we know, he spoke to only a single journalist—Matthew Cooper of Time. According to Cooper, Rove didn't even know Plame's name. If that's a White House smear campaign, Rove's skills are getting pretty rusty.

http://slate.msn.com/id/2128301/

Clyde

How reliable is this "Raw Story" site? About as reliable as Debka File, I suspect; they're an Israeli site that's right about 5% of the time and wildly wrong the rest.

Now, let's look at the logical inconsistency in the Raw Story narrative: Do they REALLY think that the administration leaked Plame's name in an attempt to shut up a publicity hound like Wilson? How stupid is that? Answer: VERY stupid. Now, if they had contacted Wilson and THREATENED to expose his wife's identity if he didn't shut up, then I'd believe the conspiracy theory that the Raw Story people are trying to peddle. But for the administration just to deliberately out her seems like something that not only would NOT shut Wilson up, but would guarantee that he'd go squealing to the press like a stuck pig. It doesn't make any sense for them to deliberately out her in a way that would not only NOT accomplish their purported goal of shutting up Wilson, but would exacerbate the situation..

So if the Wilson version of events doesn't make sense, what does? Answer: Wilson was all over the press even before his New York Times op-ed, and people were asking the administration an embarrassing question: Who is this guy and why did you send him to Niger? The answer of course was, "We didn't send him to Niger, we just asked the CIA to check into something, and his wife, who works for the CIA, set the thing up." It turns out that she was part of the "keep-Saddam-in-place" faction at the CIA that opposed the war. And while a deliberate leak of Plame's name to "punish" Wilson would have been incredibly stupid, far stupider than anything any professional politician would even think of doing, just saying, "Hey, it wasn't our idea, his wife who works at the CIA set it up" as an explanation is one hell of a lot more plausible, and far, FAR less indictable an offense, if indeed it was an offense at all. Remember, many in the press set in Washington knew what Mrs. Wilson did for a living.

In the end, Fitzgerald's going to acknowledge that no crime occurred. Whether they cobble together some kind of flimsy case based on inconsistencies in testimony by one administration figure or another is another situation entirely, but even if something like that comes to pass, it'll be far easier to get an indictment than a conviction. Ask Bill Clinton about that one.

Clyde

And Topsecret9, the real reason that Judith Miller went to jail wasn't to protect her source in the Plame kerfuffle story, but to protect her own butt. You see, Fitzgerald was also investigating another case involving Miller, where she had tipped off some Islamic charity that they were under investigation just before the feds raided them. Part of her agreement to testify in the Plame kerfuffle case was that there wouldn't be inquiries into her other (Islamic charity) sources.

topsecretk9

Clyde
Funny you should say...

CHICAGO, Oct. 18 (UPI) -- New York Times reporter Judith Miller may be called to testify that Israeli soldiers did not abuse a man convicted of financing terrorists, a report said.

Miller -- jailed until she revealed how she learned a CIA agent's identity -- witnessed the 1993 interrogation of used car salesman Muhammad Salah of Bridgeview, Ill...

...We think the government is going to call her," defense attorney Michael Deutsch told the Chicago Sun-Times.

Prosecutors declined comment.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/upi/?feed=TopNews&article=UPI-1-20051018-12052100-bc-us-salah.xml

Patrick R. Sullivan

The Rawstory article is co-authored by Jason Leopold, who I'm proud to say called me a right wing nazi in the comments section of Brad DeLong's blog where I was starring in a humiliation of Paul Krugman over Krugman running with one of Leopold's other fictions; that then Sec'y of the Army Tom White had engaged in multi-million dollar securities fraud while at Enron.

Leopold managed to get fired from Salon over it. I'm guessing he's up to his old tricks with this on Hannah.

Syl

We cannot forget that all our information is coming through the press filter. All of it.

The current interest in Cheney is newscylce worthy only. The press picked up on one question asked by Fitzgerald of Miller concerning Cheney. Then they go back and find any previous items that could possibly be related.

Thus the newscycle story of the day concerns Cheney.

What actually would be REAL news is if members of the WHIG group were NOT asked to testify.

The press doesn't know much of anything.

Seems to me all we're getting is spin: Selected leaks from self-selected people 'close to the investigation' concerning selected portions of testimony by selected witnesses. Commented and speculated on by selected journos and selected partisans.

We, the people, are not being served.

Syl

JayDee at 11:10 am is to laugh.

He seems to think it is not a democracy if his minority opinion is rejected.

Hey, JayDee, majority rules. Minority opinion is protected and allowed to make its case. Its case lost.

America used The Process. That is all that matters. Whether the outcome of the process was 'right' or 'wrong' in anyone's opinion is not the point.

Syl

CaseyL at 11:25 am

"I hope there is some kind of awakening. If the American Experiment is to last another generation, we have got to isolate the people who comprise Bush's irreducible 30% from the body politic altogether. They're unsalvageable, irreclamable poison."

What an undemocratic and fascistic statement to make. The Left in this country shows it has no real desire for the democratic process, it only wants to have its way. Fellow citizens with differing opinion should be silenced?

Truly disgusting, and, I dare say, unpatriotic, because it goes against everything America stands for.

Syl

Wilson has been spreading disinformation about his wife's role at CIA. Probably to protect himself from revealing her real job. Well, actually this may be the only aspect of the whole thing in which Wilson is sincere.

I think even the Corn article was disinformation. Wilson never 'outed' his wife. He gave only outdated info concerning her activities that long ago were already exposed.

Brewster-Jennings was a red herring. It no longer had any significance. 'Valery Plame' probably has none as well. The identity she uses in her undercover position is most assuredly completely different.

Even the statement in the Vanity Fair article about Wilson, where it was said the CIA started the process of moving her off NOC status was disinformation--make it look as if she was really non-covert to protect her continuing covert status.

(No, not CIA incompetence, merely clouds inside clouds of confusion for outsiders.)

Wilson says in his book that Valery worked for WINPAC. That may be disinformation as well. Again to protect her real function at CIA.

I accept as fact that Valery is a covert agent for the CIA.

It has to be proven to me that anyone leaking about her knows that fact...though whether they knew it or not addresses only the question of 'motive' not the underlying exposure of a CIA agent.

jukeboxgrad

Cecil said "[Wilson's statements] support enemy propaganda in wartime ... the misleading parts include conflating the documents with the trip, pretending he debunked African uranium, misrepresenting how he was selected, and the false charge of twisting intelligence."

Your assertions are not just wrong, but also beside the point, because they avoid dealing with Wilson's central message (in much the same way that outing Plame was quite gratuitously and stupidly peripheral to a goal of disputing Wilson's central message). I would paraphrase Wilson's message as follows: "my personal knowledge and experience tells me Bush is wrong when he suggests you should be worried about African uranium coming your way anytime soon, courtesy of Saddam."

Wilson was right. Bush was wrong. I guess in your book "enemy propaganda" is an odd euphemism for "truth."

Speaking of what you recently described as "anti-war activity during combat operations," I notice you can't be bothered to express your dismay at the way Republicans did it when the shoe was on the other foot (as I pointed out here).

Syl

JBG

Fake but accurate?

Is to laugh.

The hubris belongs to Joe. Who thought he had the entire answer to the Iraq war question.

The war did NOT depend on what he found in Africa.

jukeboxgrad

Cecil said "The leaker knowing it was classified is the critical piece of information."

This appears to be wrong, since SF-312 clearly indicates that if you're not sure, you need to ask first. In other words, it's not enough for Libby (for example) to say "I didn't know she was covert." He needs to be able to say "I understood that since she was CIA, there was at least a chance she was covert, so therefore before leaking I checked with a proper authority, and I was told that she was not covert, and that her identity as a CIA employee is not considered classified information."

I realize Geek agrees with you (unless I'm misreading him), so I'd be grateful for an explanation from either of you.

jukeboxgrad

Syl said "The war did NOT depend on what he found in Africa."

If Wilson's claims have no bearing on the correctness of the war, then some big shots willingly created a major nuisance for themselves in the process of trying to squelch something you claim has no importance.

What a shame that Libby/Rove et al didn't have your steely faith in the idea that "the war did NOT depend on what [Wilson] found in Africa."

Cecil Turner

I would paraphrase Wilson's message as follows . . .

Paraphrase all you like, he obviously didn't see any documents, didn't check the locations at issue, didn't even write a report, and didn't convince anyone of anything. (Kinda like you.) Then he pretends to be the font of great insight:

If my information was deemed inaccurate, I understand (though I would be very interested to know why). If, however, the information was ignored because it did not fit certain preconceptions about Iraq, then a legitimate argument can be made that we went to war under false pretenses.
In fact, his information wasn't even briefed to decisionmakers because it "did not provide substantial new information."

I notice you can't be bothered . . .

No, I really can't. (As long as there are people in the world who can engage in civil discussion, or until you turn into one of them.)

TM

I would paraphrase Wilson's message as follows: "my personal knowledge and experience tells me Bush is wrong when he suggests you should be worried about African uranium coming your way anytime soon, courtesy of Saddam."

Of course you would, because a more accurate paraphrase would not stand up to any scrutiny.

How about "Dick Cheney's office asked for an evaluation of reports that Saddam was attempting to acquire uranium, and ignored the answer when it did not fit their pre-conceived message"?

Or why accept my humble attempt? Here is a recent NY Times, which has carried water for Wilson since Day One:

Mr. Novak's column followed a July 6, 2003, Op-Ed article by Mr. Wilson in The New York Times in which he concluded that the administration had twisted prewar intelligence about Iraq's weapons.

Somehow, JBG's "Bush was wrong" lacks the impact of the Times "the administration had twisted".

Sharky

Doing Su Doku is tough enough, who cares about this byzantine shit

Jeff

TM - This is amazing. Via Swopa, it appears that Murray Waas had quite a scoop on Pincus' July 12 2003 conversation partner back in April. Check it out:

Two days before columnist Robert Novak named Valerie Plame as a covert CIA operative, a Bush administration official told a reporter for The Washington Post that Plame's husband, former Ambassador Joseph Wilson IV, had been sent to Niger on a sensitive diplomatic mission only because his wife recommended him for the job. The administration official admitted his role to federal prosecutors during their investigation into the leak of Plame's identity.

The Bush administration official, according to attorneys familiar with his testimony, told a federal grand jury that he made the claim to the Post reporter and others in an effort to undermine Wilson's credibility, who was alleging at the time that the Bush administration was relying on faulty intelligence to bolster its case to go to war with Iraq. But the official just as adamantly denied to the federal investigators that he had ever told the Post reporter, Novak, or anyone else that Plame was a clandestine CIA operative.

The Post reporter, Walter Pincus, confirmed in an interview that the administration official attempted to discredit Wilson by claiming that Wilson had been sent to Niger on a boondoggle arranged by Wilson's wife. But Pincus says that the official did not tell him that Plame was anything other than an analyst.

jukeboxgrad

"byzantine"

I agree a lot of the details are hard to follow. For a very quick and simple overview, I highly recommend this video segment with Chris Matthews (link).

jukeboxgrad

Cecil said "he obviously didn't see any documents, didn't check the locations at issue, didn't even write a report, and didn't convince anyone of anything"

The funny thing about Wilson's methods, whatever they were, is that he came up with the right answer. I guess this doesn't count for much, in your book.

You, on the other hand, seem to be impressed by documents as long as they look official (like the heavily-redacted NIE you flog at the drop of a hat), even if they're wrong.

As far as the idea that he "didn't convince anyone of anything," your leaders sure made a big mess for themselves in the process of defaming someone who ostensibly didn't have the ability to "convince anyone of anything." It seems that Rove et al didn't share your assessment that Wilson lacked the ability to "convince anyone of anything."

"As long as there are people in the world who can engage in civil discussion, or until you turn into one of them."

It's entertaining how you repeatedly address my statements, until you come across a question that's too hard to answer, and then you suddenly claim I'm too uncivil to address. Anything I can do to help you finally make up your mind? I would hate to be the cause of this chronic indecision which seems to plague you.

Speaking of intriguing dualities, I notice you grant yourself permission to conveniently hide behind a high horse of "civil discourse," while practically in the same breath throwing around genteel terms such as "stupid" and "jackass." IOKIYAR.

Syl

JBG

You're arguing strawmen again, as usual.

Wilson's claims had no bearing on the total case for war but they did undermine the war itself by turning the hearts and minds of Americans against the president.

Oh, I just know you're not going to like the way I phrased that. :)

jukeboxgrad

Syl said "Wilson's claims had no bearing on the total case for war but they did undermine the war itself by turning the hearts and minds of Americans against the president."

English translation: "Wilson's words are not important, but they are important."

By the way, if the president's hold on the "hearts and minds of Americans" is so shaky that it can't withstand some criticism by an ostensible buffoon such as Wilson, then that's a pretty good indication that there's a problem with the president. To put it differently: why do you hate democracy?

By the way, since you're apparently troubled by the idea that someone might speak out to "undermine" a war, let us know how you feel about this.

jukeboxgrad

Tom said "Somehow, JBG's 'Bush was wrong' lacks the impact of the Times 'the administration had twisted'."

I think you're splitting hairs. There's a place for that, but it also leads to people understandably using words like "byzantine."

In my opinion, all the formulations you cited are correct and complementary. I think to see this, one only needs to consider the pathetic story of the multiple NIEs (as I summarized here).

And just to highlight one piece of the miserable NIE story: it's now more than two years since Pincus told us that WHIG rejected early versions of the White Paper on the basis of being "not strong enough." And you seem to still have trouble grasping what's more evident every day, that the administration had indeed "twisted prewar intelligence about Iraq's weapons." With all due respect, please get a clue.

kim

Were they twisting it the same direction the CIA was twisting it?
==================================

Syl

JBG

You are laughable. Being unimportant in one way yet important in another are not mutually exclusive.

Besides, YOU fell for it didn't you?

There's your answer.

jukeboxgrad

Kim said "Were they twisting it the same direction the CIA was twisting it?"

It's pretty clear that top management at CIA was making an attempt to be good soldiers and give the boss what the boss clearly wanted. Don't forget that George "slam-dunk" Tenet walked away with a medal for doing this.

On the other hand, it's clear enough that numerous contrary voices at various levels were squelched. The fact that someone cut the word "dubious" out of the NIE before handing it to Congress (about a week before they voted on the war) is a pretty remarkable example.

jukeboxgrad

Syl said "You are laughable."

You seriously undermined your ability to do this sort of namecalling when you said something particularly ignorant and steadfastly refused to take responsibility for it. Now that's what I call laughable.

kim

Are you trying to tell me there was ambiguity in the whole mess of WMD? What a novel idea. I thought the CIA had it figured out and the administration 'fixed' the intelligence.

Now you try to tell me that there were differences of opinion? I want a link.
==================================================
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Seven Machos

I love the left, man. I really do. It's always good for a laugh.

Above we have Jukemeister shocked -- SHOCKED! -- at apparent paradox and internal inconsistency by, e.g., Republicans who'd like to draw down Iraqi forces.

And here I thought you guys were all about NUANCE, and COMPLEXITY, and all that stuff that John Kerry, uhh, "stood for." So the flavor of the week for now is hard and fast dogma that can never change? Thanks. I'll make a note of it.

Also, just one more thing, Jukemeister: if your lionized hero Joe Wilson can speak out against the war, why can't others speak out against Joe Wilson? Or is only "democracy" when you are talking and we dumb righties have our mouths shut and our heads down?

macranger

Heh, just read this...

"SusanG at Kos contacted Wilson yesterday and asked him flat out: "Are you a source for Miller? Is she protecting you?" His response:"

Who cares?...Why would he start telling the truth now?

Syl

JBG doesn't understand that the world changes around him. World opinion, especially arab world opinion, has changed quite a bit in the last 4 years.

But JBG is only concerned that I defended Halliburton. Another matter where reality doesn't really matter to the left....only faith that billion dollar contracts mean billion dollar profits for Halliburton.

Cecil Turner

The funny thing about Wilson's methods, whatever they were, is that he came up with the right answer.

I suspect you're less impressed with this part of the reveleations of St Joseph:

Iraq possessed and had used chemical weapons; it had an active biological weapons program and quite possibly a nuclear research program — all of which were in violation of United Nations resolutions.
It's entertaining how you repeatedly address my statements, until you come across a question that's too hard to answer . . .

Here's a clue for ya, JBG: I'm under no obligation to answer your "questions" (which usually aren't questions, but rhetorical games to contrive inconsistent positions to "prove" your opponent is a liar).

Anything I can do to help you finally make up your mind?

Yes. Why don't you either start acting like an adult, or address your comments to someone else. I'd prefer the latter (since the former appears impossible).

Speaking of intriguing dualities, I notice you grant yourself permission . . .

To insult you without waiting for you to start? Yes, my learning curve isn't perfectly flat. If you're really concerned about it, you could desist from starting your long-winded insult sessions in the first place.

jukeboxgrad

Seven said: "Above we have Jukemeister shocked -- SHOCKED! -- at apparent paradox and internal inconsistency by, e.g., Republicans who'd like to draw down Iraqi forces."

You're being even more of an idiot than usual, which is quite an accomplishment.

At no time recently did I say, imply, or link to anything on the subject of "Republicans who'd like to draw down Iraqi forces."

My best guess is that you're making some kind of assumption about a link I offered which you didn't bother to actually read (and I have a feeling the link was this, which I mentioned here and here). However, guessing about where you get your weird ideas is an exercise I'm only willing to pursue just so far. Maybe you'd like to help out and give us a clue to the basis for your ridiculous statement.

"why can't others speak out against Joe Wilson"

I don't have a problem with people who "speak out against Joe Wilson," except when it involves making things up. A lot of that goes on around here, as you amply demonstrate, including just now.

I do have a problem with high government officials who hide behind snakes like Miller because they're too cowardly to go on record with their arguments. I also have a problem with the idea that our government couldn't figure out how to express its views about African uranium without messing with the career of a CIA operative. And then lying about it repeatedly in a two-year coverup. Slightly more important than a blowjob, in my opinion.

"we dumb righties"

You're doing a good job of proving it.

jukeboxgrad

Syl said "JBG doesn't understand that the world changes around him"

Let me know when it changes so much that the words "a few million" become interchangeable with "a few hundred million" (link).

"arab world opinion, has changed quite a bit in the last 4 years"

Yes, and not in a favorable manner: "Poll Shows Growing Arab Rancor at U.S.; Arab views of the United States, shaped largely by the Iraq war and a post-Sept. 11 climate of fear, have worsened in the past two years to such an extent that in Egypt -- an important ally in the region -- nearly 100 percent of the population now holds an unfavorable opinion of the country" (link).

That's from a year ago, but the negative pattern seems to persist. More on Arab anti-Americanism here.

"But JBG is only concerned that I defended Halliburton"

Uh, no. It's not just that you defended Halliburton. It's not even that you defended Halliburton by making shit up. It's that you refused (and still refuse) to act like a grownup and take responsibility for your gross error. That's the sign of a true jerk.

"Another matter where reality doesn't really matter to the left"

You probably don't see the irony of pretending that there's no difference between "a few million" and "a few hundred million," and then pretend that I'm the one who doesn't care about "reality."

"only faith that billion dollar contracts mean billion dollar profits for Halliburton"

It's true that Halliburton's billion-dollar contracts haven't led to billion of dollars in profits (and of course I never claimed that they did; nice little straw man you threw in there). They've "only" led to hundreds of millions of dollars in profits. You see, I do understand the difference between sales and profits, just as I understand the difference between "a few million" and "a few hundred million."

You obviously have some work to do to catch up.

jukeboxgrad

Cecil said "I suspect you're less impressed with this part of the reveleations of St Joseph"

I'm well-aware that Wilson had some concerns about Saddam. Aside from demonstrating that Wilson's not the loony extremist some freepers claim, what do you think this proves? I have no idea, so this seems to be another one of your guessing games.

"rhetorical games to contrive inconsistent positions"

No contriving is needed to see your "inconsistent positions." They're plainly visible. A recent example is your opposition to "anti-war activity during combat operations," except (apparently) when Republicans do it.

"address your comments to someone else"

I'll address my comments to whomever I wish. You're free to ignore or not. If you can't control yourself, that's your problem.

"you could desist from starting your long-winded insult sessions"

You and I have both used insults. One difference, though, is that I, unlike you, do not also repeatedly make a fuss about the need for "civil discourse." In other words, you're a hypocrite.

kim

You are shimmering, Juke. Go read Jay Rosen about the NYT newsroom. Sorry, no link. It was about a week ago.
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kim

Next assignment, Stephen Hayes, in the Weekly Standard, about this mess.
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jukeboxgrad

I've read all that stuff. If you have a specific point to make, that might be slightly interesting.

By the way, thanks for the "shimmering." That's another new one.

kim

Well, at least we're on the same page, even though it is quaking in my hands.

Must be made from aspen pulp fiction.
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kim

Let's get real. Are my Cards still in it?
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Cecil Turner

A recent example is your opposition to "anti-war activity during combat operations," except (apparently) when Republicans do it.

Got any evidence for the last part of that? Didn't think so. As usual, a sophomoric and dishonest exercise for calling your opponent a liar.

I'll address my comments to whomever I wish.

Hence the "anything I can do to help" offer was dishonest? what a shock.

One difference, though, is that I, unlike you, do not also repeatedly make a fuss about the need for "civil discourse." In other words, you're a hypocrite.

Hypocrite, liar, hate democracy, whatever. No, the difference is that I don't start these insult sessions. I'm not sure what you get out of it, but ignoring you doesn't work, nor does appealing to your better nature. You are incapable of having a discussion without ascribing an ulterior motive to your opponent, and thus aren't worth talking to. But since you persist . . .

The comments to this entry are closed.

Wilson/Plame