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November 04, 2005

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topsecretk9

I didn't really put this together better till after the indictments, but...Matt Coopers post GJ accounts pose a real problem.

pre-ANY-Indictment, what Cooper writes is questionable. That is, if no one is indicted and GJ is secret.... there is no way of knowing if he is being HONEST about his account (insert Sidney Blumenthal here)

POST- Indictment

One must assume that Cooper was honest in his after GJ account (otherwise the prosecutor would be interested in that, no?)

So. Fitzgerald is concerned with this email...remembering later-ness on the part of Rove. How could you forget?

Well, Fitz's big witness on that would be a guy who just testified to the GJ that HE DID NOT RECALL Welfare Reform, but AFTER....in just looking at his notes REALIZES , YES I was working on Welfare Reform DURING THE SAME TIME IN QUESTION and perhaps DID LEAVE A MESSAGE through the MAIN WH switchboard (not Rove's office) calling about that (the extra call is not really ALL that important here, unless he did leave a message)...

Now the actual Cooper WR article was a blip that was shelved and later printed, nothing Rove could pull out of a hat and use as an alibi pre or post email. It was generic and didn't quote anybody Admin or otherwise.

So Fitz's main get on Rove is just ripe for a defense attorney ripping?
Fitz is saying so forget the fact that Cooper "disremembered" and focus on the fact the defendant did????


Lesley

Clarice, yes, the second green room outing of which I have heard. The other, oddly enough (if the poster is to be believed), was Victor Davis Hanson.

"Based upon a personal conversation (we were in a small group eating; it was NOT an "off the record") I had with eminent historian Victor Davis Hanson (we were at a luncheon table together during a trip to Europe), it appeared entirely possible that Joe Wilson himself was the (or one source, if not the original one) possible source in revealing his own wife's status as a CIA agent or employee."

"Victor Davis Hanson (Wilson presumably knew Victor Davis Hanson wrote regularly for NRO (National Review Online), had done OpEds for the Wall street Journal, and other publications, and had his own Website with a widespread following) said he (VDH) & Joe Wilson were both in the same "Green Room" before a televised debate-discussion on Iraq, etc. and Joe first warned the TV make-up person not to get powder on his $14,000 Rolex watch, then he bragged to Victor about several things (possessions and trips to Aspen, etc.), like his expensive car (I think it was a Mercedes), and then bragged about his beautiful ("hot") wife who, Joe Wilson said (braggingly) was a CIA operative."

"I asked Victor Davis Hanson Why he didn't write up this account.(?) He replied that Joe Wilson would probably simply deny it, since only he (VDH) & Joe Wilson were in the Green Room together before the broadcast."

posted on 07/17/2005 4:44:31 PM PDT by FReethesheeples/Free Republic

Imparted with a HUGE grain of salt. I'll spook around to see if Hanson and Wilson were ever on television together.

clarice

This conversation, Vallely said, took place in 2002, several months before Plame's alleged "outing" at the hands of Karl Rove and Scooter Libby, via Robert Novak's column published July 14, 2003.

Vallely also said that his impression of Joe Wilson, at that time, was that Wilson was a "self-promoter" who was making the rounds of the news programs, likely in advance of publishing a book.


Wilson made a couple of appearances in that period--two on NPR. I listed them a couple of days ago and it should be eay to check those programs ti pin it down.

topsecretk9

here is no way of knowing if he is being HONEST about his account (insert Sidney Blumenthal here)

drumroll please...Clarice...for this

Reg Jones

"Harlow botched that"

Yep, he sure did. Remember Harlow went "on the record" with this:

"The CIA says its counter-proliferation officials selected Wilson and asked his wife to contact him." [Novak, 7/14/03]

Novak later explained Harlow was concerned about the Plame's actual name being used.If Novak's right it's another reason to say good-bye to any IIPA action and I suspect to any classified information prosecution at all.

topsecretk9

Clarice
Isn't this the second green room outing Wilson made of Valerie?

Yes, there is an account of Victor Davis Hansen and his GR experience with Wilson (and his "Hot CIA wife")...He retold his experience to another person who asked him why he didn't write about it...He said that since it was only he and Wilson in the GR he figured Wilson would deny it.

topsecretk9

From the bastion of the right... the Spectator

"Remember, all of this got started because word reached the White House from reporters and friends of the Administration that Wilson was talking himself up and his Niger trip in green rooms all over town.

http://www.spectator.org/blogger_comments.asp?BlogID=539

topsecretk9

Lesley--

You scamper...you beat me to it, with such detail too!

clarice

It was obviously in 2003 and I searched thru my records of the 6 appearances Wilson made from Oct 2 through May 2003 which I knew of where Wilson never mentioned the grande mission and find none where they appeared together..still..they needn't have appeared on the same show and I don't think I have all his appearances in that period..

How do we get this to Libby's lawyers? LOL

If nd when I get the transcript, I'll add it to this site.

clarice

Niters...

topsecretk9

Anyone have a clue as to Wilson pre-Kristoff/Pincus's cable appearances? I know he said that he was appearing in his book...he takes the opportunity to take a few swipes at Fox, natch.

I am more interested in CNN, for a reason, though. I know he was on June 8---the day of the IAEA forgery reporting!

Geek, Esq.

If this is all they have against Rove, I'm pretty skeptical.

In fact, I don't think he should be indicted if that's all they have.

Cecil Turner

The email contained the words Cooper, Niger, and Wilson. A search with any one of these words, all of which relate to the subpoenas, would turn up the email.

"Wilson" would have been a dead giveaway, but as far as I can tell, doesn't appear in the e-mail. "Cooper" was not one of the reporters cited in the original WH Counsel e-mail to "provide [] copies of the following documents":

reporters Knut Royce, Timothy M. Phelps, or Robert D. Novak, or any individual(s) acting directly or indirectly on behalf of them.
"Niger" was there, but unfortunately, July 11 is the same day as Tenet's speech (admitting the Niger/Africa statement shouldn't have been in the SOTU), which is what this e-mail is apparently about. I suspect they had a stack of those, most of which wouldn't be pertinent. Further, Rove is probably the only one who could look at that e-mail and immediately identify it as germane (that the discussion was about Wilson, not just Tenet's Niger statement), and for obvious reasons, he wouldn't be the one sifting through the evidence. The "we missed it" explanation appears plausible.

I also think there's a basic fairness issue in that Administration officials are essentially being forced to testify, having their statements pored over with a microscope, and then being grilled by the grand jury. Subsequent charges on the underlying crime are one thing . . . seeming inconsistencies in voluminous witness recollections are another. I think there's an argument to be made for their Fifth Amendment rights being infringed.

And speaking of Tenet, American Thinker has a good article from former CIA exec Herbert Meyer on the handling of Wilson (HT: Instapundit), which asks Tenet two questions:

  • Why did the CIA, under your direction, treat the Vice President’s query about Iraqi efforts to purchase yellowcake in Niger so casually?
  • When Joe Wilson started blabbing in public about his CIA mission to Niger – and lying about what he reported to the CIA upon his return – why didn’t you say something rather than allow the President’s credibility to be shredded?
The second seems particularly apt.

topsecretk9

Totally unaware of how Admin emails would be subjected...but could it be possible that it was something as generic as "FYI" or "Update"

Also, in poking around...came accross this old TM post ( about 3/4 into TM's post) Can someone Esplain Lucy?

October 05, 2003

"...On "Wilson was casting his wife n a movie, how can he be worried about safety two days later?", a commenter points out that back in '91 he appeared at press conferences in Baghdad wearing a noose. So he's loosey-goosey, I should criticize? A future in the Foreign Service opens before me! And point taken...."

How in the Hector does TM do this too?

JM Hanes

tops -

"Fitz. is basing his case against Rove on Cooper???"

Frankly, I don't think he has a case against Rove. As I understand it, there's only the implication that Rove didn't volunteer info about his conversation w. Cooper, and didn't produce the relevant email until the possibility that his conversation w. Cooper might be discovered (in a technical sense). Even if he could establish that Rove hadn't been fully forthcoming, as opposed to forgetful & sloppy, I'm not sure that even the venerable Fitz can negotiate the stretch from there to obstruction. Lying/perjury don't even appear to be on the table.

Compared to the charges lodged against Libby, indicting Rove for deliberate tardiness sounds considerably more like an prosecutorial embarassment than a vindication of the public interest! Terrie's suggestion above strikes me as a lot more plausible.

MayBee

Cecil Turner on Meyer:
"When Joe Wilson started blabbing in public about his CIA mission to Niger – and lying about what he reported to the CIA upon his return – why didn’t you say something rather than allow the President’s credibility to be shredded?"

This is the same CIA, after all, that approved Imperial Hubris to be written, published, and promoted by an "Anonymous" CIA agent while still working in the CIA and during an election cycle.

Interestingly, Shuerer/Anonymous (sp) seems to hold many of the 'US is doing everything at Israel's behest' opinion that Wilson expressed in his WaPo chat.

Dwilkers

Doesn't make sense, and I don't buy it.

Moreover, it doesn't pass the common sense test. If I was on a jury hearing this I'd be highly skeptical. On the one hand I'm being asked to believe this guy remembered the conversation and lied to the investigators and grand jury about it, while on the other time he didn't remember the e-mail that catches him in the lie - an e-mail he had to know was under subpoena.

And the timing proves nothing, at best it would only be circumstantial evidence supporting something the prosecutor could already prove.

Either he remembered it and lied about it or he didn't remember it and later had his memory jogged. I am much more likely to remember something business related that I sat down and wrote a document confirming than I am a 90 second phone call. So on its face its hard for me to believe he remembered the conversation but not the e-mail, and I don't buy for a minute that he remembered it but risked that the SP wouldn't find it. Fitz would have to have something fairly compelling to prove this beyond a reasonable doubt. "This guy lied. He has 100% recall on telephone conversations but he has very poor memory on written communication." To me, the idea that Rove's attorney found the e-mail and that the e-mail jogged Rove's memory is perfectly plausible.

I'm just sayin...as an average Joe on the jury it would be real hard to prove this to me beyond a reasonable doubt.

This strikes me as political mental masturbation by NYTimes reporters - or outright speculation if you prefer. I don't see how it helps Rove either, so it doesn't seem to follow that "lawyers in the case said" necessarily refers to Rove's lawyers. Could just as easily be lawyers in the special prosecutors office.

JM Hanes

Unless you’re Ronnie Earle, indictments always read like a slam dunks. Fitz may be the “smartest guy in the room” at the moment, but that room’s going to get a whole lot bigger when this case goes to trial.

The weakness in the case for the “underlying crime” is that the IIPA statue was very narrowly tailored for a very different kind of offense. As Fitz practically spelled out in his press conference, trying to piece together an indictment under any of the other potentially, but ambiguously, applicable statutes would be opening a Pandora’s box of stunning dimensions, and he just ain’t prepared to risk that world of woe.

Your fanciful pardon scenario is irrelevant but even if it weren’t, you’ve got it backward. Pardons won’t even figure into Fitz’s strategy, because they’re not under his control. By the time this trial is over the Prez will be heading back to Texas, not trying to justify reprieves, but in any case he’d be a whole lot more likely to pardon Libby for perjury than for tainting his entire administration as unindicted co-conspirators. Ditto for which crime would look more attractive to Libby plea-wise, assuming he were inclined to plead to anything at all. I hear you can take one look at the lawyers he’s lining up and pretty much kiss that idea good-bye.

Of course, I could be wrong, but I recommend stocking up on serious popcorn.

JM Hanes

Meant to address previous post to p.lukasiak.

MayBee

Every single administration official has been a source for something. Or could be. A reporter relies on sources- that's what a lot of this case has been about. I am certain that anyone with an a$$ to cover or a story to tell or a sympathetic press contact is jockeying to get their side of the story written. For whatever reason. We don't know- we don't ever know.
Who knew Steph would write an ugly book about Clinton? I thought they had loved each other. Or that Freeh and Clinton hated each other and rarely met face to face? Or that Clarke found himself so all-fired important?

These people are jockying for position all the time, and they need the press and the press needs them.

As for Fitzgerald and Rove- Fitzgerald has to show both that he was as scrupulous as possible in the case against Rove, without being irresponsible. Wilson made it clear early on that Rove is the center point in this tug-of-war. Brigning him down or not is almost too much power for one man.

Sorry if this is impossible to read. I don't have my glasses on.

kim

cathy's earlier comments about memory have provoked a thought. Does anyone here think that Rove does not have a peculiar and extraordinary memory? Does anyone here think that Libby does not have a precision of thought and speech that is nearly peerless?
==================================================

kim

JMH: Yesterday morning I heard Libby's lawyer's brief statement on the radio. This will be dissection and dining. I admire Fitz, and pity him.
===============================================

Truzenzuzex

Jeff:

On that note, is there any reason why we can and should rule out Cheney as Novak's source? The sheer implausibility of the thing? The fact that there has been no indictment?
A better question might be: Is there any reason at all to believe Fitzgerald does not know who Novak's source is?

I would say that Fitzgerald knew Novak's sources very early on. We (think) we know that Rove was the confirming source. We have been told by Novak that the other was "no partisan hack" or some such.

Assuming Novak is not simply lying, it could therefore not be Cheney. It is most likely Tenet.

Truzenzuzex

Cathy:

It seems to me that Libby's lawyers should first demand that the judge rule on the IIPA applicability, and then when s/he rules that the statute's plain language means what it means (or makes a reversible error), they should demand that all language that even hints at probable cause under IIPA should be struck from the indictment as prejudicial.
Why would the judge grant that? Clearly, a violation of that statute is one of the things that Fitzgerald was charged with investigating.

I'm not comfortable enough with federal trail procedure to know for sure, but maybe the defense could force Fitzgerald to stipulate that the IIPA wasn't violated by calling a string of expert witnesses that would testify to that effect. But frankly, after re-reading the relevant sections I don't think the cites are that prejudicial. The word "covert" only comes up twice, and the IIPA cite is very neutrally worded and a clear statement of fact.

Truzenzuzex

I suppose at this point Fitzgerald is simply trying to find people with whom Rove might have discussed the Cooper conversation between the time he first testified and the time he clarified that point.

If he didn't discuss Cooper with anybody outside his legal team or write some memo about it in that time frame, it is hard to imagine how Fitzgerald can indict him for perjury.

p.lukasiak

Look, either Miller has been cunningly pretending to be an absolute flake for decades in order to undermine Fitzgerald's prosecution, or Fitzgerald stuck highly prejudicial utter nonsense in a criminal indictment. If the former, Miller is guilty of criminal obstruction of justice and Fitzgerald should have indicted her. If the latter, he has engaged in eye-popping misconduct.

Cathy, rather than assume that Miller has changed her story, you might want to go back and read what miller actually wrote.

The "wife works at bureau" phrase is from her notes of the June 23 meeting with Libby. "Wife works at Winpac" is from notes of the July 8 meeting.

************************

As to the question of Cooper, and whether Rove spoke to him about Welfare Reform in the conversation in which Rove told Cooper about Wilson's wife....

Cooper's story hasn't changed. He acknowledged that he had, at one point, been working on a welfare reform story. But Cooper's recollection is that his call to Rove was specifically about the Niger story---and Cooper has the notes he took from that conversation, and there is nothing about "welfare reform" in them.

This doesn't mean that Rove is lying -- this is the kind of detail that someone like Rove could easily get jumbled.

****************

One of the big unanswered questions with regard to the "I heard it from reporters" excuse is that it doesn't make sense. Even assuming reporters might have had some inkling that "Wilson's wife worked for the CIA", that is only half the information that was being imparted to/confirmed for reporters.

The other, and far more critical, half is "she was involved in sending her husband to Niger". THAT is the story -- the fact that Wilson's wife was CIA would not be considered a relevant fact absent the "involved in Wilson's trip" allegation.

So, when Bob Novak calls Rove, and tries to get confirmation on the "Wilson's wife worked for the CIA and sent him to Niger" story, and Rove (according to Luskin) says "I've heard that too", the question "where did Rove hear that Wilson's wife was involved in his trip" is raised.

Again, this may come down to the issue of Novak's professionalism --- if ALL that Rove said was that he'd heard Wilson's wife was CIA, would Novak take that as confirmation of the central point of his story -- that Wilson wife sent him to Niger?

Syl

p.luk.

re Novak, Rove, and confirming source.

1) Rove is not admitting that he confirmed the story to Novak. Rove's story is that he had heard "fragments" about a Wilson-Plame-CIA connection from reporters, and when Novak called him and mentioned that Mrs Wilson was CIA, Rove responded "You've heard that too." That is not a confirmation of a story, but a confirmation of the existence of a rumor. And Novak didn't publish a "it is rumored" story.

Novak got his confirmation from Harlow at CIA.

The key to the "different recollections" of Novak and Rove is that Novak acted on what Rove said. Presumeably, he was looking for confirmation -- and if we assume that Novak is "professional", he would not have sourced his story the way he did if Rove had only said "I heard that too."


What were Novak's exact words? Was Rove a source or a confirming source? Novak's ultimate confirmation that mrs wilson was CIA was given him by Harlow. If Harlow had simply refused to comment on anything Novak said he was going to print, would Novak then have printed it as 'rumor'? I think so.

Harlow got distracted by correcting something in Novak's piece. He thus confirmed that she was with the CIA.

Syl

p.luk

The classified information that was leaked was that she worked at CIA. That she was involved in sending him on the trip doesn't matter. She could have had friends at the CIA. That's not proof that she, herself, was CIA.

And the actual information alleged heard from reporters was, indeed, that she was CIA, which is the classified datum.

Syl

"And the actual information alleged heard from reporters was, indeed, that she was CIA, which is the classified datum."

which brings us directly back to Russert.

p.lukasiak

We have been told by Novak that the other was "no partisan hack" or some such....Assuming Novak is not simply lying, it could therefore not be Cheney.

There are lots of people, including Cheney, involved in this story that I personally consider "partisan hacks" -- but is that how Novak would describe Cheney? I think that deleting Cheney from the list of suspects, based on Novak's "partisan hack" exclusion, is decidedly unwarranted.

Syl

p.luk.

"the evidence is overwhelming that "as if for the first time" is a flat out lie."

The evidience is certainly not overwhelming. It would be overwhelming if Libby had said he heard the information 'for the first time'. Libby instead said 'as if for the first time.

I assert there's a difference. Libby was learning the information unofficially for the first time.

Syl

p.luk.

I think that deleting Cheney from the list of suspects, based on Novak's "partisan hack" exclusion, is decidedly unwarranted.

Like Novak's use of the word 'operative'? :)

I wouldn't say it's 'decidedly unwarranted' I'd say it was 'undecidedly warranted'.

Syl

p.luk

(no, I'm not picking on you)

p.luk

referring to Cathy's explanation of the 1917 Act vs Classification system that was not set up until 1951:

But the definition of what is covered in 10 USC 793 is incredibly broad (in essense, and "defense information" in its broadest sense) that this is really a moot point.

Quite the contrary. That the definition is so broad makes it more likely that a prosecution would be difficult. And that's the point Fitzgerald brought out in his presser re where the Act bumps up against the 1st Amendment.

Syl

JMHanes and Terrie

I agree that it looks more like Fitz is walling Rove off from Libby than trying to indict. If Rove attempts to help in Libby's defense, anything he says can be used against him.

Kate

It's definitely not Cheney. Novak was an opponent of the war. Novak's source is either Powell, Armitage or Tennant.

If Rove is indicted it will be for making false statements, nothing else.

And if he is indicted, it will be a far weaker case than Libby and much more open to questions of political motivation.

p.lukasiak

The classified information that was leaked was that she worked at CIA. That she was involved in sending him on the trip doesn't matter.

According to reports, the section of the state department memo that discussed Wilson's trip and included the information about "wilson's wife" was marked with an "S", denoting "secret".

Nevertheless, that particular information is not relevant to the IIPA "underlying charge" (although it would be relevant to an Espionage Act charge.)

But I raised that point because it is relevant to the question of Rove's credibility and vulnerability to perjury or obstruction charges, rather than his specific vulnerability under IIPA.

Its one thing to know or have heard that Wilson's wife was CIA. Its another thing entirely to know or have heard that Wilson's wife was involved in sending him to Niger.

Both pieces of information were being imparted to and confirmed for journalists. But even assuming that Rove and Libby did hear the Wilson's wife was CIA from reporters, are reporters going to know that "wilsons wife" was involved in sending him to Niger? Not bloody likely, if you ask me.

Kate

Of course reporters would know that Wilson's wife sent him, since he was blabbing that to reporters earlier than any discussion by government officials. Everyone in DC wanted to know how Wilson ended up going on this mission since he was not an expert on WMD issues and was an Administration critic. It was the nystery...how come he went.

On a list of problems facing the White House in the spring of 2003, I would rate Wilson as 56th on the list.

It's unfortunate, the the VP's office took Wilson's bait.

Syl

p. luk

"are reporters going to know that "wilsons wife" was involved in sending him to Niger? Not bloody likely, if you ask me."

So?

Rove could have said Wilson's wife was involved in sending him to Niger and that wouldn't have met the condition for revealing Mrs. Wilson was CIA.

It also wouldn't have made much sense ;)

But then, they should have simply let reporters make the connection on their own.

susan

What are the Democrats, Socialists, Exempt Media and anti-liberators going to do after the Bush Adminstration ends and a new Republican adminstration is elected?

Marcel

Rove is merely a supporting player in this story. The central players are in the Vice President's circle: the Office of the Vice President (Libby, Hannah, Wurmser, Addington, Matalan) plus those in other senior positions closely associated with Cheney (Hadfield, Bolton, Fleitz).

It was the OVP - not Rove's office - that was busy in June gathering details about Wilson's trip and Wilson himself. We now know that Libby talked to Miller 3 weeks before Rove talked with Cooper.

Rove was merely supporting the Cheney initiative, and providing political cover for the President.

pollyusa

Cecil

why didn’t you [Tenet] say something rather than allow the President’s credibility to be shredded?

It seems to be you answered the second question posed by the author in "American Thinker" in your post. The Tenet statement is dated 7/11/03, 5 days after Wilson went public. Tenet spent several days writing and vetting that statement with WH input, ie Hadley, Rove and Libby.


p.lukasiak

Quite the contrary. That the definition is so broad makes it more likely that a prosecution would be difficult. And that's the point Fitzgerald brought out in his presser re where the Act bumps up against the 1st Amendment.

syl, Cathy's point was that the espionage act would not be applicable because the classification system was not in place in 1917. My point (which I expressed incoherently) was that the definition was so broad in the espionage act that it would include "classified" information of any type as long as its disclose could damage the US.

Nor do I think that the breadth of the definition is an impediment to prosecution under the Espionage Act. What is an impediment, however, is that the Espionage Act was (as FitzG pointed out) not intended to be an American version of British Official Secrets Act which criminalize all disclosure of classified information. Its intended purpose, as its name implies, was to criminalize "spying" --- and the breadth of the act was intended to ensure that all incidences of "spying" during WWI could be prosecuted.

If one relies solely on the text of the statute, there is little question that disclosing Plames employment status, and the involvement of Plame in Wilson's trip to Niger, were illegal acts. The problem is that if we start prosecuting people for disclosing classified information, we'll need to build a few more prisons to accomodate all the "criminals" in government (and not just in this administration, of course.)

Syl

Marcel

"It was the OVP - not Rove's office - that was busy in June gathering details about Wilson's trip and Wilson himself."

Like, so what? They wanted to know what was going on. So they gathered details. That's hardly a crime. I would be more upset if they sat back and ignored it all.

I think you're under the impression that 'outing' Valery was punishment? Because Wilson said so? Au contraire, look what Wilson got from his accusation...

Book deal. Vanity Fair. Extensive exposure on the talk show circuit. Paid speaking engagements. Name constantly in the news. A year long paid vacation for Valery.

I should be punished so severely.

creepy dude

What are the Democrats, Socialists, Exempt Media and anti-liberators going to do after the Bush Adminstration ends and a new Republican adminstration is elected?

Continue to look on in horror at the continued betrayal of America, the last and greatest of human dreams.

Syl

p.luk

If one relies solely on the text of the statute, there is little question that disclosing Plames employment status, and the involvement of Plame in Wilson's trip to Niger, were illegal acts.

You slipped the trip involvement in there again. That was not the illegal act. The illegal act was revealing Valery's affiliation with the CIA.

Her involvement in the trip was the pushback, her CIA affiliation only explained her involvement. And that part was the illegal act.

And if, indeed, at least some reporters already knew Valery was CIA, all they needed to do was reveal that she had involvement in the decision to send her husband. No illegal act there.

Let the reporters figure out the connection and all beat a path to Harlow's door. :0

Syl

creepy dude

"Continue to look on in horror at the continued betrayal of America, the last and greatest of human dreams."

Spoken as a true believer in a stateless world, governed by the U.N., and administered by the elitist class and NGO's.

Unfortunately Republicans (and most Democrats) believe in the sovereignty of the United States as one separate nation among many. Bush proved our sovereignty when he performed regime change in Iraq without the specific permission of the UNSC.

The problem with 'progressives' is that they want to have their cake and eat it too. Claim they support the great America but at the same time do not support her sovereignty.

hrtshpdbox

"Continue to look on in horror at the continued betrayal of America, the last and greatest of human dreams."

Wow, that's creepy, dude. Sigh, if only someone honorable, like John Kerry, were tasked to Stop The Betrayal (voters obviously too stupid, though).

Syl

p.luk

Yes, I get your broader point that the act would/could be applicable. I agree.

p.lukasiak

Everyone in DC wanted to know how Wilson ended up going on this mission since he was not an expert on WMD issues and was an Administration critic. It was the nystery...how come he went.

this is a classic example of ex poste facto "reasoning".

In February 2002, Joe Wilson was considered a highly respected former career diplomat who had served under both Republican and Democratic administrations with distinction. He wasn't considered a "political hack". And although he may not have been a "WMD expert", the knowledge and experience that he did have made him an appropriate choice to investigate the allegations.

(Let me put it this way --- "Poppy" Bush would have had no qualms about sending Wilson on such a mission. G.W. Bush probably would have, but that is more an indication of Bush's pathological hatred of anyone and anything involved in the Clinton administration than an indicator of Wilson's appropriateness for the task.)

Wilson was not an "administration critic" at the time he was sent on the mission. He was pretty hardcore about Iraq, in fact.

(And, it should be noted, when Wilson heard Bush's SOTU address and its reference to yellowcake from Africa, he assumed that the administration had other credible reports, and was not relying on the bogus claims that he had investigated. Wilson also believed at the time of the invasion that Iraq had chemical and biological weapons, and his criticism of the administration's decision to go to war was based on the decision to invade without international support and sanction.)

Like most Americans, by May 2003 Wilson was doubtless confounded by the fact that nothing had been found to substantiate any of the administration's WMD claims in Iraq -- and Wilson came to the conclusion that intelligence information had been manipulated in the run-up to the war. As a result of this revelation, Wilson did two things in May -- signed up with the Kerry campaign, and started talking to journalists.

Those who ascribe entirely partisan motives to Wilson for going public are merely projecting their own base partisanship on Wilson -- they need to do so in order to "prove" to themselves that "Wilson lied", in order to ignore the overwhelming evidence that intelligence was deliberately distorted, exagerated, and misrepresented by the Bush regime in order to "sell" the war to the American people.

The truth about Wilson is far less "cut and dried", and the best explanation of his motives is that both decisions (joining the Kerry team, and going public) were motivated by a desire to do what was best for the country.

But it would be foolish to pretend that Wilson was unaware of the political implications of his going public with his account of his trip to Niger.

The "patriot" in Wilson wanted the truth to come out, the "partisan" in Wilson attempted to tie Bush himself to the distortion of intelligence by using the "sixteen words" from the SOTU in his NT Times column -- when, in fact, his story had only a tangential relationship to the claim made by those words. (A completely "non-partisan" writer would have cited something like the State Department Fact Sheet of 12/19/02, which made claims directly related to Niger without citing British intelligence. But that would not have implicated Bush directly in the manipulation of intelligence.)

One final point -- Wilson criticism of the Bush administration's handling of intelligence was "muted" and "diplomatic" when he appeared on TV right after his column was printed in the Times. He didn't become "shrill" until his wife was outed.

creepy dude

Syl-how you can take from my comment I don't support American sovereignity is beyond me. Actually- I'm all behind it 100%.

And I am a honest taxpaying American who think America's greatest enemies lie within-(as apparently do many people on the right)- it's just I think Bush and Cheney represent a far greater and more immediate threat to American values than Michael Moore and Cindy Sheehan.

And if Dems can never get voted in again-who cares-Republicans are increasingly fragmented. I have allies in the enemy camp.

Take the battle between two Republicans-McCain vs. Cheney on the torture amendment. McCain has 90 senators on his side but I know you'll say Cheney is the "real" Republican (and you're right-sadly).

Now to me Cheney is actively betraying what this country stands for. Thanks to CT-I know that President Lincoln even ordered torture beyond the pale in 1863, stating that military necessity does not condone torture.

Yet here's Dick "Thumbscrew" Cheney seeking to exempt the CIA. Sorry-but the guy is a menace to society. Thank Lord Krishna 90% of the United States Senate agrees.

Truth Hurts Libs

Wilson was already proven to be a liar by at least two bipartisan reports. Of course Joe has plenty of pro-terrorist supporters on the left, but the truth will come out. Wilson is a traitor to America and he should be tried as such.

pollyusa

I think I've got it now.

1. Rove was to busy to remember the call with Cooper.

2. Rove is too busy to remember the email to Hadley. I'm guessing Hadley was also forgetful.

3. Rove has too many emails to search properly when subpoenaed.

4. WH staff and Rove's lawyer's staff may only able to search email by subject.

5. The WH staff and Rove's lawyer's staff may be unable to search email by search word, ie Cooper.

6. If they found an email with "Niger" they would think it related to the Tenet statement not to Wilson or Plame.

7. Rove and his staff kept no record of the Cooper call because it came throught the WH switchboard.

Cecil, you may be unware that there was a second set of subpoena's issued on January 22, 2004. Information required under the subpoenas included records of the WHIG and contacts with Cooper. Newsday reported the subpoenas here and here.

All three subpoenas were sent to employees of the Executive Office of the President under a Jan. 26 memo by White House counsel Alberto Gonzalez saying production of the documents, which include phone messages, e-mails and handwritten notes, was "mandatory" and setting a Jan. 29 deadline.

According to the recent NYT Rove turned over the email 8 months after the deadline right around the time that Cooper received his second subpoena.


boris

Rose law firm billing records anyone?

cathyf

I think p.luk has stated the essential distinction very well -- there is the classified information, the association between "Valerie Plame" and "CIA," and there is the non-classified information, which was who came up with the notion of sending Wilson. And as Syl has explained, if enough reporters knew that Val was CIA, then as soon as you start telling reporters that Val sent Joe, it was inevitable that one of those reporters would realize how Joe got to be sent to Niger, that he was lying about it, and think that the public had a right to the truth.

A defense theory would take shape something like this:

1) Joe and/or Valerie blab that she's CIA. Any such blabbing within the 5-year time frame was a violation of the IIPA. Any blabbing at all was a violation of Executive Order 13292.

2) Joe lies that he went to Niger at the behest of the vice president.

3) Libby tells reporters that Cheney didn't send this clown, it was some stupid scheme cooked up by CIA people.

4) Novak (at least) connects the dots between "CIA people" and "Wilson's wife."

5) Novak writes up the story, and Harlow confirms the classified piece (Val's employer) and argues about the unclassified piece, and Novak (correctly) decides that Harlows arguments are lies.

6) At least one reporter (Mitchell) has an "aha!" moment when reading Novak's column and sees these 2 facts side by side. She already knew the classified piece of information; it was the unclassified piece which completed the puzzle for her. She makes claims that lots of other reporters knew the classified piece.

7) Little attention is paid to the classified piece of information (it is background, after all) while lots of attention is paid to the unclassified piece (since it accuses Joe Wilson of lying in the course of his accusations against the vice president.)

8) Then David Corn publishes Wilson's accusation that the White House is "outing CIA agents," supplying all of the names and dates in one place.

So now, here we are 3-4 years later, after a 2 years-long special prosecutor grand jury investigation, and it appears that the special prosecutor never bothered to find out how widely known was the connection between the CIA and Wilson's wife. The common sense logic is that a piece of classified information was divulged, so somebody from the "classified" side told it to somebody on the "non-classified" side. It appears that Fitzgerald spent all of this time and money collecting evidence that Libby knew the information before it was divulged in Novak's column, but no attention at all to trying to find out if the classified information was divulged to Novak, or some unauthorized person upstream of Novak, in the months and years before Libby ever heard of Joe Wilson or Valerie Plame.

cathy :-)

Eric

Does anyone have any thoughts on Wilson being "hired" as an unpaid advisor to the Kerry campaign in May 2003?

This seems to be a very relevant piece of information as only Kristof's 2st column was published prior to this occurring.

Seixon

So I guess it looks like Rove is going down then. Foolish, foolish man.

Sue

P. Luk,

Your statement doesn't comport with facts. GWB kept Tenet and a host of others from the Clinton administration. Something that has been highly criticized by republicans as being a dumb move.

TP

Eric,

I think this and the possibility that Joe might have tried to shop this as "news" prior to the Kristof column and that some other reporters, as yet unquestioned, might have asked Libby or Rove about it well in advance of Kristof's column.

cathyf
Everyone in DC wanted to know how Wilson ended up going on this mission since he was not an expert on WMD issues and was an Administration critic. It was the nystery...how come he went.

this is a classic example of ex poste facto "reasoning".

No, it's a classic example of summarizing the explanation given by someone involved. That's simply a fair summary of what Mitchell said she and other reporters were thinking.

Or are you saying that Mitchell, Russert, etc. are the ones engaged in ex poste facto reasoning? Isn't that basically what journalists do? They "ex poste" (after events) report what happened, using "reason" to decide what are the more important facts (beginning of the story), the less important facts (end of the story), and the irrelevant facts (not in the story.) If you are criticizing journalists for practicing journalism well, then that's a rather novel criticism of journalists...

cathy :-)

Syl

creepy dude

before I read the rest of the thread...

"Yet here's Dick "Thumbscrew" Cheney seeking to exempt the CIA."

Actually this has to do with the separation of powers. The executive branch is responsible for protecting the nation. It is its prime duty. The legislature pays for it. Exempting the CIA from this regulation has nothing to do with allowing torture, rather it is for maintaining the power of the executive to conduct its business without interference from the legislative.

Congress, naturally feels differently, so its no surprise that so many would be against the exemption.

Syl

Cathy

re 8:27AM post

Spot on!!

BurkettHead

At 7:33, p.lukasiak said:

"The "patriot" in Wilson wanted the truth to come out, the "partisan" in Wilson attempted to tie Bush himself to the distortion of intelligence by using the "sixteen words" from the SOTU in his NT Times column -- when, in fact, his story had only a tangential relationship to the claim made by those words. (A completely "non-partisan" writer would have cited something like the State Department Fact Sheet of 12/19/02, which made claims directly related to Niger without citing British intelligence. But that would not have implicated Bush directly in the manipulation of intelligence.)"

But Joe Wilson went to Niger. He heard that the Iraqis made inquiries about purchasing yellowcake. These inquiries were, as far as I know, not related to the forged documents (unless the forgeries confused the Nigerians, too). So, when Wilson hears Bush say “The British Government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa,” he knows that no purchases were completed and that the Iraq-Niger documents were forged, but he also know s that there were, in fact, inquiries. Did Joe conclude that Bush said “sought,” but misspoke & meant “bought?” Did Joe misinterpret the 16 words? So, what “truth” did Joe want to come out? That Iraq sought to purchase yellowcake from Niger, but there was never much of a chance that they would complete the purchase?

If Joe successfully debunked the content of the forged documents in his February 2002 briefing, don’t we have some far larger issues to deal with here? If they did read him the content of the forged documents & he knew that the names were wrong & the dates were wrong, did he say anything? If so, why didn’t the CIA do anything about it? That would seem to be big news, and very easy to verify. Is that why the CIA took their time obtaining actual copies of the documents? Why didn’t that show up in an analysis? Why didn’t anyone report that news to Cheney immediately? Is the CIA that incompetent? Or that nefarious?

cathyf
there was a second set of subpoena's issued on January 22, 2004. Information required under the subpoenas included records of the WHIG and contacts with Cooper.
So, some poor white house IT geek who missed the magic email when the search returned 35,789 hits isgoing to be charged with obstruction of justice? Think they'll frog-march him out of the computer room?

Now that is something that is hard to imagine a grand jury going along with...

cathy :-)

Syl

OT but has to do with classified information and how little the public understands it.

Today on BookTV, an author/journalist was complaining about the secrecy and cover-ups of our government. As an example he stated he submitted a FOIA request. When he got documents back concerning an expedition he and some friends went on to recover the body of a journalist, the government had redacted his name and the names of the other participants in the expedition as top secret information.

His misunderstanding is that redacting those names had little to do with being classified as secret or anything else and everything to do with the Privacy Act.

Like all federal agencies, the Department of Justice (DOJ) generally is required under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to disclose records requested in writing by any person. However, agencies may withhold information pursuant to nine exemptions and three exclusions contained in the statute. The FOIA applies only to federal agencies and does not create a right of access to records held by Congress, the courts, or by state or local government agencies.

And one of those exclusions is (3) information that is prohibited from disclosure by another federal law.

This can be found in the FOIA reference guide.

pollyusa

there is the classified information, the association between "Valerie Plame" and "CIA," and there is the non-classified information, which was who came up with the notion of sending Wilson.

Plame's role in the Wilson trip was classified. The paragragh in the classified INR memo that mentioned Plame's role was marked "S".

Cathy

Since Cooper said he had only spoken with Rove "a handful of times", I think we can whittle down the number of emails relating to Cooper.

cathyf

Another question about the Cooper email -- was it really not delivered to Fitzgerald? Or did the white house IT geeks write a perl script which ran a search on every email in the white house archives, collected all of the emails that matched the search criteria, burned them on CDs, and then rented a truck to deliver the boxload after boxload of CDs to Fitzgerald's office? It seems to me that Fitzgerald's subpeonas were pretty broad, and it would have been obstruction of justice to filter out data to make the size manageable, and so those subpeonas resulted in a deluge of information getting dumped on Fitzgerald's office.

I would think that what was going on was that Fitzgerald's staff was searching through the email pile looking for things that were significant, and Luskin, as Rove's lawyer, was searching through the same pile, or through a subset of the pile -- the emails Rove sent or received -- looking for significant emails. For anyone pointing out that there is something suspicious about it taking Luskin (or more likely, Luskin's staff) 8 months to find it, how do you answer the response that apparently they found it before Fitzgerald's staff did?

cathy :-)

clarice

General Vallely says Wilson offered up to him the information that his wife was a CIA employee, well before the Novak article.

[quote]Joseph C. Wilson, revealed wife Valerie Plame's identity in a casual conversation more than a year before she allegedly was "outed" by the White House through a columnist.
Maj. Gen. Paul Vallely told WorldNetDaily that Wilson mentioned Plame's status as a CIA operative in at least three, possibly five, separate conversations in 2002 in the Fox News Channel's "green room" in Washington, D.C., as they waited to appear on air as analysts. [/quote] http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=47242


He outed his wife to Hanson, he repeatedly outed his wife to Vallely. Mitchell says everyone knew. Barnes says everyone knew. Agee outed her. The Agency outed her to the Cubans.

It now seems relevant to ask, if she was outed so many times, why didn't the SP know this and shut the damn thing down?

Patrick R. Sullivan

De minimis non curat lex.

Absent any underlying crime, how Libby or anyone else learned of Valerie Plame's employment or with whom they spoke of it, is the definition of trivial.

clarice

Especially since it would appear that more people in the media-government ranks knew than didn't know,Patrick.


Sue

Cathy,

I am a paralegal. There is no way we would turn over anything we hadn't vetted first. I can't imagine them turning over documents not looked at first. I suppose it could have happened, but I have never, ever seen it done before.

Sue

Wait, I'm thinking civil law. A subpoena would probably be a different set of circumstances. Nevermind.

clarice

Yes, Sue, it would. Don't forget also there are time deadlines and multiple subpoenas and multiple copies of everything turned over to be made for all the counsel of all the people subpoenaed.

(Did I tell you that document requests are the thing I hated most? And let's not even discuss papers inadvertently stuck to others, accidently left in the xeroc machine, dropped and ending up in the wrong pile. ) In any event, I can think of lots of reasons why the email might have been found late inthe game.

The important thing is that it was found and when it was, it was disclosed.

Syl

clarice

"It now seems relevant to ask, if she was outed so many times, why didn't the SP know this and shut the damn thing down?"

While gossip in the public domain does not automatically de-classify a piece of information, in this case it is terribly, but hopefully not tragically, apropos. It's the knowledge reporters had of her affiliation that is so important to Libby's case.

And, yes, perhaps the case might have been dropped earlier altogether except that politically it seems that was impossible.

Syl

pollyusa

"Plame's role in the Wilson trip was classified. The paragragh in the classified INR memo that mentioned Plame's role was marked "S"."

But that does not necessarily mean that her role, absent the identification of her as CIA, was classified or could not be immediately de-classified by anyone in a position to do so.

Many were arguing ages ago that perhaps her role was classified without the fact she was CIA being classified. Which would be true if her status were not classified.

So the reverse could be true as well.

I think the 'secret' classification was applied only because of her classified status.

Syl

If you understood my last post, you get a star. I'm sticking by it though. :)

boris

gossip in the public domain does not automatically de-classify a piece of information

... but does effectively render it unprosecutable. In this case the threat of prosecution for such nonsense (what it really is) has apparently been used to motivate implausible spinning by spinmeisters who now stand accused of making false statements regarding a non-crime.

This is but one of many dangers in removing objective standards for classification.

I have joked that lawyers use logic the way liars use statistics. As a tool of persuasion that may or may not relate to reality. Alan Shure may be able to convince a jury that black is white and up is down
but I have never been able to convince silicon logig that ones are zeros and zeros are ones.

The only time I had a top secret clearance (long ago) was when I was a crypto tech. In crypto the difference between secret and clear is very objective. You can't just rot13 a document and pretend it's still top secret.

topsecretk9

Sue--OT, I got a bug like Lesley on the Church

the most INTERESTING use of "Victoria Plame" is by one Wilson's favorite columnist to site, from Newsday on CNN JULY 26, 2003, the fella that took Corn's clairvoyance a step further

---And since he went public, he says there are people in the administration who are out to make him and his family examples.
Joining us now from Washington is one of the reporters who broke the story, Timothy Phelps, the Washington bureau chief of "Newsday." Thanks for joining us.

TIMOTHY PHELPS, NEWSDAY: I'm pleased to be here. Thank you.

PHELPS: No, and that's not really my job. I simply reported that two senior administration officials had blown the cover of a obviously undercover CIA officer, and revealed that Victoria Plame worked at the CIA.

http://66.102.7.104/search?q=cache:w7xwLrx8hJkJ:transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0307/26/cst.27.html+%22VicTORIA+Plame%22&hl=en

Well, He was the guy who did the CIA due diligence reporting (vs. Corn's clairvoyant speculating)

---By Brian Knowlton International Herald Tribune Thursday, October 2, 2003

"...Wilson has said that he believes administration officials illegally disclosed the CIA connection of his wife, Victoria Plame, to the syndicated columnist Robert Novak and others after he questioned Bush administration arguments for the war with Iraq.,

...and also about contacts with Novak and two Newsday reporters, Knut Royce and Timothy Phelps, or their associates....
.
While Novak named Plame as a CIA officer in a July 14 column, it was an article eight days later by Phelps and Royce that revealed that she had served undercover. "A senior intelligence official confirmed," they wrote, "that Plame was a Directorate of Operations undercover officer" who worked with the CIA officers who asked Wilson to undertake the trip to Niger.,"
http://66.102.7.104/search?q=cache:HBloYjftYPgJ:www.iht.com/articles/2003/10/02/leak_ed3_.php+TIMOTHY+PHELPS+%22Victoria%22&hl=en

---CNN- October 5, 2003------Isikoff get cozy with "Vicky"

"ISIKOFF: If I can weigh in. The way I think this is going to play out -- and you can already sort of see it if you watch the bouncing ball closely -- Novak's original story identified Vicky Plame as an operative for the CIA, not an undercover operative. And it may well be that whoever leaked the information to Novak did not know her undercover status and that Novak may not have known that when he wrote the column. Actually, it was not until a week or so later in the Tim Phelps story in "Newsday" in which he is writing that Novak blew the cover of an undercover operative quoting a senior administration official. That was the first time the undercover status -- so I think that is going to be very important legally as to whether or not there was a violation of law. "

---Newsweek= Oct. 7, 2003... apparently it is repeated 3 more times in the article (noted: Copy Editor anyone?)
Howard Fineman --- in his article TITLED "Victoria's Secret" or the "Plame Game" Oct. 7, 2003...

"...I’ll stipulate that it is a felony to disclose the name of an undercover CIA operative who has been posted overseas in recent years. That’s what the statute says. But the now infamous outing of Victoria Plame isn’t primarily an issue of law. It’s about a lot of other things, like: the ongoing war between the CIA and the vice president’s office...."

----CNN Host Mark Shield with Novak on Capital Gang : January 3, 2004-- Novak does not correct

SHIELDS: Kate O'Beirne, let me ask you a question. Why, in your judgment, up to now, has nobody in the White House staff been interviewed under oath? And secondly, wouldn't it just be simple to ask, Did you know or did you have reason to believe that Victoria Plame, Joe Wilson's wife, was a CIA agent or operative? I mean, wouldn't that narrow the pool?

SHIELDS: That's the only reason anybody knows Victoria Plame.

Left Coaster did this:
I checked with Joseph Wilson and he said he has no clue about how this strange name may have gotten in the public record.

Lesley

Jon Henke at Qando has posted a review of right wing blogs. He praised Tom at JOM.

Henke at Qando

But this commenter cracked me up.

"I like Maguire’s writing a lot, but the Plame story lost its fascination for me ages ago. I feel like I’ve walked into a roomful of people discussing a Russian novel I haven’t read."

Written By: Brainster
URL: http://brainster.blogspot.com


clarice

Lesley, so you think the Cherry Trees is an analogy of the failure of the bourgeois to truly accept the consequences of capitalism, and not merely a tale of a neurotic resistance to acknowledging changed circumstances? LOL

clarice

I was so existed to figure out how to italicize..The Cherry Orchard if course..

pollyusa

If you understood my last post, you get a star. I'm sticking by it though

I think I understand what you are saying. We now know from the Libby indictment that Plame's employment at the CIA was indeed classified.

We also know from the Libby indictment that Libby found out about Wilson in late May orally from an Under Secretary and from CIA documents on June 9. ( nothing about Plame is said to be known to Libby yet)

Libby was told by Cheney on 6/12 that Plame worked at the CIA nothing about Plame's role in the trip.

Libby finds out about from the State Department that Wilson's wife was involved in his trip from Grossman on 6/11 or 6/12. Grossman is the administration official who had the INR memo created on 6/10.

The INR memo is the source of the information regarding Plames's role and Grossman is the one who had the memo. Grossman is also the one who told Libby about Plame's role in the trip.

Plame is mentioned in the memo in relation to her role in the Wilson trip and that section of the memo was classified.

Who gets to declassify that sort of thing I do not know, but Tenet probably could have and choose not to in his July 11 statement.

Cecil Turner

Cecil, you may be unware that there was a second set of subpoena's issued on January 22, 2004. Information required under the subpoenas included records of the WHIG and contacts with Cooper.

Nope, I'm aware of it. But it stands to reason that those e-mails had already been sorted at least once, per the previous direction of the WH Counsel. And since it wasn't a "contact with Cooper," but a "conact with Hadley," it's hardly inconceivable that a search would fail to move it from the "non-pertinent" stack. (Further, my experience with staffwork suggests people looking over the same data more than once tend to be less efficient on subsequent looks.)

WH staff and Rove's lawyer's staff may only able to search email by subject.

Looks like Rove's lawyer actually found it, so that might not be entirely fair. And as Cooper's testimony approached, you'd expect them to be looking into that and related matters, so I don't find it odd someone more knowledgeable about the specifics might find it then.

Plame's role in the Wilson trip was classified. The paragragh in the classified INR memo that mentioned Plame's role was marked "S".

The rest of the Niger story was classified Top Secret. Yet Wilson is writing a NY Times op-ed. Looks like selective outrage to me.

JM Hanes

Cathy -

”So now, here we are 3-4 years later, after a 2 years-long special prosecutor grand jury investigation, and it appears that the special prosecutor never bothered to find out how widely known was the connection between the CIA and Wilson's wife.”

Which suggests that:

1) It doesn’t matter because Fitz knows Plame was no longer qualified as technically covert. He knows, and has known almost from the start, that he will never be indicting anyone under IIPA.

2) Fitz has made it clear that he doesn’t want to set a precedent for indiscriminately indicting any & every individual instance classified leaks (legal, political, ethical nightmare of a de facto Official Secrets Act).

3) The only reasonable charge left worth making is a conspiracy to reveal classified info. Essentially, the “suspects” only have to believe that the connection is not widely known enough -- which the very fact they’re trying to place that info in the press would conveniently confirm.

4) In that light, the prosecutor’s original mandate to investigate “the alleged unauthorized disclosure of a CIA employee's identity” and its subsequent expansion to a veritable litany of potential & ongoing conspiracy-related misdeeds make perfect sense.

In other words, Fitz came on board in Dec. ‘03, took one long hard look at this case, and had already realized that a conspiracy was the only game in town as early as Feb. ’04. He hasn’t gotten there yet, and frankly, if he really still thought he might pull that rabbit from the hat, I don’t think he’d be trying to sell the Libby indictment as a vindication of the people’s interest in holding someone accountable.

JM Hanes

Is there any way to revisit and correct a message once posted? Anybody?

cathyf
Plame's role in the Wilson trip was classified. The paragragh in the classified INR memo that mentioned Plame's role was marked "S".
So the whole paragraph was marked classified? I've always been curious how this works... Anybody here with real-world experience with classified info that can share? Is there just an "S" (or other classification) floating next to the paragraph, with no indication of what is supposed to be the secret stuff and you just have to guess? Or do they put the secret stuff in a different font, or color, or put brackets around it?

I read through the indictment, and it wasn't clear to me whether Libby had seen the actual INR report with the marked paragraph, or had heard about it. I know there is the conversation where he tells his deputy that the CIA would be unhappy if they talked about it, but it was not clear to me whether he meant the CIA would be unhappy because it was classified, or that they would be unhappy because it would embarrass them.

cathy :-)

Syl

pollyusa

"Plame is mentioned in the memo in relation to her role in the Wilson trip and that section of the memo was classified."

You're repeating yourself. I know. I know. I do it too.

But I hardly think the classification of her role in sending wilson on a trip rises to the level of outing a CIA agent. And if that had been the only thing? No investigation whatsoever.

I do think the separation of the role she played with the fact she is CIA is appropos to the defense in terms of reporters knowing the second part.

Lesley

Clarice LOL

OT apologies in advance:

I'll never forget my experience in Russian Lit class as a dopey (and man was I dopey, even more dopey than I am now) sophomore. We had to read Dr. Zhivago and my professor explained that the women in Yuri's life - Tonya & Lara - were Pasternak's "symbols" for the old regime vs Zhivago's "hoped for" new regime (not Bolshie but constitutional/democratic) and me being absolutely crushed my professor had ruined that love story for me!!!

I expect I shall get over it someday.

JM Hanes

Lesley -
"I feel like I’ve walked into a roomful of people discussing a Russian novel I haven’t read."

LOL! Thanks, I needed that! Maybe everybody did. :)

pollyusa

Syl

Here is what I think we can agree on.

If Plames's employment at the CIA wasn't classified and SAO's leaked information about her possible role in Wilson's trip from a classified document, we probably wouldn't be having this dialog.

Cecil Turner

Anybody here with real-world experience with classified info that can share? Is there just an "S" (or other classification) floating next to the paragraph, with no indication of what is supposed to be the secret stuff and you just have to guess?

Just the paragraph markings, and the subject of the paragraph is the classified bit. (Usually it's fairly obvious, but background paragraphs tend to be a mish-mash.)

pollyusa

cathyf

Apparently the INR memo had different levels of classification and were designated by paragraph.

The paragraph identifying her as the wife of former ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV was clearly marked to show that it contained classified material at the "secret" level, two sources said. The CIA classifies as "secret" the names of officers whose identities are covert, according to former senior agency officials.
WAPO 7/21/05

pollyusa

And since it wasn't a "contact with Cooper," but a "conact with Hadley,"

You are right, the email was a contact with Hadley, but the subject was a conversation with Cooper.

The phone call and the phone log was a "contact with Cooper".

dogtownGuy

For what it's worth,

INR memo, Oct. 17

POWELL: They were following what was going on. And I think we have been forthcoming in what was known within the department about it, the famous State Department memo that I was given by one of my staffers, which, by the way, never had the name Plame anywhere in the memo.

KING: No?

POWELL: No. A lot of press reports suggest the name was in the memo. It was not.

http://www-cgi.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0510/17/lkl.01.html

cathyf
2) Fitz has made it clear that he doesn’t want to set a precedent for indiscriminately indicting any & every individual instance classified leaks (legal, political, ethical nightmare of a de facto Official Secrets Act).
...
he’d be trying to sell the Libby indictment as a vindication of the people’s interest in holding someone accountable.
"Indiscriminate"? As in "not discriminating"? As in "within the bounds of the 14th amendment"?

I read an interesting comment (pair of comments) over at volokh.com about Kelo. One lawyer was saying that the uproar over Kelo is crazy, because the court's interpretation of eminent domain in the Kelo case was very mainstream and fit with all of the precedents. Another commenter replied that while professionals knew, the citizenry as a whole was shocked to find out that over the years the courts had been eating away at the constitutional rights that they thought they had.

There has been lots of talk about the potential that the kerfuffle has to radically alter the place of the media in American society. I think that's true. But I think that there is an even more significant factor, in that people watching this sausage machine up close are wondering how the perverse combination of prosecutorial discretion, grand jury secrecy, and press shield policies have made a mockery of the fifth, sixth and fourteenth amendments. We learn in civics class that The Rule of Law is the most precious part of our national patrimony. As a fundamental part of our culture we honor fairness and decency, and perjury traps and selective prosecution are deeply offensive to our values. You lawyer types may think, "well, that's the way it is," but us normal people find it unfair and disturbing -- and given enough of us, we may very well change "the way it is."

cathy :-)

Sue

Myself, I think this is a whole lot of nothing about something. I believe Wilson started this campaign, for reasons only he is aware of at the moment, it would seem, to bring down Bush. But I don't for a minute believe Karl Rove forgot a conversation with Matt Cooper about the very subject they were investigating, especially when Cooper wrote a story about it, sourcing Rove. I am also skeptical he forgot an email he sent, that sounds very much like a cover your a$$ email. Having said all of that, I can also see reasonable doubt...shoddy memory, last minute before leaving, busy man syndrome, etc. Maybe his wife called right before the Cooper call and complained because he wasn't home yet. Distracted. At least enough of a reasonable doubt theory for Fitzgerald to take a second look and decide not to press charges. I am more interested in who leaked to Dana Priest about a truly covert operation.

SteveMG

I like Maguire’s writing a lot, but the Plame story lost its fascination for me ages ago. I feel like I’ve walked into a roomful of people discussing a Russian novel I haven’t read."

That's funny.

TM as the Grand Inquisitor, of course.

Who's the heretic, Wilson or Rove?

SMG


Sue

Clarification: I didn't mean to imply Cooper sourced Rove by name in his story. But the source of a story would recognize himself. IMO, of course.

clarice

Lesley, more proof that lit professors and analysis of lit kills the love of and very life out of literaure.

Or them that can do and them that can't teach.

If your lit professor could write Dr. Zhivago would he be in a smelly classroom sying the same thing year after year to students ? Given a choice would you be Pasternak or the professor? Old regime/new regime..Lara was hot stuff.

boris

If anybody would know the classification details it would be Harlow. Based on Harlow and Novak:

After confirming Val to Novak as CIA Harlow found out she had covert status, thus confirming her was a mistake. He asked Novak not to use her name but couldn't tell him why because that information was classified. He didn't tell Novak that her employment was classified and if he had Novak would not have used her name. If her employment was classified why not just say so ??? Unless her status was classified not her employment. Her employment was Do Not Confirm but not classified.

Jeff

We have been told by Novak that the other was "no partisan hack" or some such.

Assuming Novak is not simply lying, it could therefore not be Cheney.

To be fair to Cheney, I think Novak said "gun-slinger" not "hack." But point well-taken, with the large caveat.

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Wilson/Plame