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July 15, 2006

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Charlie (Colorado)

But somehow all of this seems in really bad taste. This pathetic couple and their childish lawsuit are meaningless in the background of what is happening in the world right now.

Life goes on, Florence. People paid attention to baseball and Hollywood in the 30's too.

But since this could affect whether we've got Churchill or Chamberlin in office, it's hardly unimportant.

Charlie (Colorado)

Much of the document reads as though it comes straight from that particular horse's mouth.

Wrong end.

Jeff

Wilson explaining that Kristof. Pincus, and Judis/Ackerman *all* misquoted/misattributed him when they said that he debunked the forgeries.

I will give you some version of that one, as I've said in the past. Wilson seems to have led them to believe that his report declared the documents forgeries. Now, the SSCI is typically misleading on this point (and it's another one of their misleadings that Robb-Silberman goes some way toward correctly, though it has its own problems), insofar as it makes it sound like the government had no knowledge of the substance of the forged documents before October 2002, and that's false: the February 2002 report was verbatim text, and contained the same errors (at least some of the same errors) as the actual documents, making clear that the February 2002 report, which Wilson discussed at the meeting, was based on the forged documents. So it's possible Wilson was more emphatic at the February meeting in saying any documents with the relevant names on them and so on had to be forged, and he may have felt that his claim that any such agreement was highly unlikely meant the documents they had discussed had to be forged. It's further possible no one involved in that February meeting wanted to highlight the fact that they discussed in pretty good detail a classified report. But that said, Wilson made the journalists think he had more assertively declared the documents forgeries than he did (assuming the CIA report accurately reflects what he told his debriefers).

I don't have access to the Couric argument at the moment, but the examples don't seem that damning. Which brings me to this more general point:

The point Wilson makes, at EPIC and elsewhere, about going on his mission on behalf of the government and not, nor not only, the CIA seems to me to be the completely unexceptional reflection of some combination of the following facts: the CIA is part of the government, and Wilson’s formulation emphasizes that he was working for the U.S.; he was told by the CIA that his mission was conceived as a way of answering questions raised in the Vice President’s Office, which is a part of the government beyond the CIA; though conceived by the CIA, at the meeting on February 19 that Wilson attended, there were various agencies represented discussing the ins and outs of such a mission; the mission was evidently understood by the participants at that meeting to be on behald not just of the CIA but of the government altogether, as is indicated by the INR memo, or rather the underlying INR analyst’s notes, which say the meeting was convened (apparently, he notes incorrectly, by Wilson’s wife) with the idea that the CIA and the larger U.S. Government send Wilson to Niger to sort out the Niger-Iraq-uranium story. Now, those of you who favor the mind-control version of the conspiracy theory that it was the CIA undermining the Bush administration from February 2002 (at the latest) on, can use this as evidence: see, it was set up by the Wilsons as a trip purporting to be representative of the U.S. government to mislead the Bush administration into thinking there was something to the Niger story only later to turn around and claim that this trip in fact debunked the Niger story. But in so doing, you are acknowledging that Wilson was on firm ground, even if it was all a devious plan, to claim that he went on his trip on behalf of the larger US Government, and not just the CIA.

vnjagvet

Syl:

If I were on the defense team, I would want to use your comment upthread as my outline for one of the themes in taking Wilson's deposition.

It is very well done.

Using this theme with leading questions could yield great results.

Save it please.

clarice

I think so, too,vnjagvet.

farmer's wife wannabe

Joe Wilson's top ten worst inaccuracies and misstatements:
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1442798/posts?page=924#924
...

The "16 word" spin, imho, was an effort to cover up decades of covering up for Saddam Hussein: terrorist, and for Saddam's accomplices, foreign and domestic.

A few day's worth of fact-filled releases re. Iraq at Captain's Quarters:

Operation Blessed July:

..Saddam had plenty of connections to Islamist terrorism. Now we know that Saddam had every intention of using his fanatical commandos to commit terrorist acts abroad, under the direct control of his son Uday.

http://www.captainsquartersblog.com/mt/archives/007506.php

The Saddam-Osama Connection: http://www.captainsquartersblog.com/mt/archives/007505.php

Saddam's Subsidies To Terrorists: http://www.captainsquartersblog.com/mt/archives/007502.php

A Strange Sense Of Urgency (when Clinton called for the bombing of Iraq on the eve of the scheduled House impeachment vote): http://www.captainsquartersblog.com/mt/archives/007503.php

Me And My Moustache: http://www.captainsquartersblog.com/mt/archives/007495.php

Taking A Stroll Through The Garden Of Half-Truths (with Valerie and Joe): http://www.captainsquartersblog.com/mt/archives/007484.php

Isn't it interesting how real war heroes and elected leaders, the party representing we the people, and the troops fighting for liberty for all can't buy time in prime time, or ad space in the New York Times?

The UNTOUCHABLES continue to strut about the world, without ever being concerned of ever being held accountable - the absolute power and shamelessness of the unelected, unaccountable, un-American elite collectivists.

Hold the damn trial while American heroes are on the ground in warzones, embolden the enemy and weaken America on the world stage.

Continue the post-2000-election demoralization, ill will tour of sore damn losers.

Not everyone is applauding. Though I'm certain the jihadists are much encouraged! And more heroes will die because the "beautiful people" AREN'T, as standing them next to real heroes clearly shows.

Cecil Turner

the SSCI is typically misleading on this point . . . insofar as it makes it sound like the government had no knowledge of the substance of the forged documents . . . and contained the same errors (at least some of the same errors)

Oh nonsense, Jeff. You deride the SSCI and then paraphrase its statement about "verbatim text":

The second report provided more details about the previously reported Iraq-Niger uranium agreement and provided what was said to be "verbatim text" of the accord.
And obviously things like a "childlike signature" (or seals, or other enclosed documents) wouldn't be included in such a "verbatim text." Talk about "misleading."

there were various agencies represented discussing the ins and outs of such a mission

AFAICT, the only discussion about the Wilson mission was between CPD and INR, with the latter vehemently opposed. Wilson didn't even represent the larger CIA, let alone anyone else. (The ambassador telling him not to meet with current Nigerien officials is telling as to State's opinion on the mission.) And Wilson's exaggeration of the connection with the OVP was an obvious attempt to bolster his false claim that they had to've seen his report. (Just as his "dates were wrong and the names were wrong" claim is obviously intended to support his false claim to've debunked the report.)

cathyf
She is given a pass on this and then proceeds to bite the government hand that has been feeding her for the past 20 years. Has she no shame or sense of dignity?
I find the Plame covert agent resume to be rather interesting. Her application process followed by training seems to have taken 3-4 years (not at all unusual given the job.) Then she was an actual productive agent for maybe 4-6 years before she was outed by Aldrich Ames. Then the CIA sent her to graduate school. During that same time period the CIA's budget was being cut by 20% (peace dividend, you know) and so dozens of experienced, highly-productive-for-decades agents were laid off, forced into early retirement, etc. While she got tens of thousands of taxpayer dollars funding her tuition and living expenses. Then she gets herself involved with a married man whose then-current wife is a foreign national with an extremely vague business representing yet other foreign nations. Then she has twins, and post-partum depression. (Hmmm -- I wonder how the PPD affects the whole security process? The CIA relies upon periodic flutter drills as part of constantly monitoring their employees for people who have been turned as double agents. Does severe depression make a polygraph useless?)

Here is someone who got a 20-year career and a pension out of what was realisticly only about 4-6 years worth of productive work. Sure, I know that this isn't exactly rare in DC, but why do I wonder if she would have done so well if she had been a homely overweight brunette?

cathy :-)

clarice

Cecil, you are sooo patient.

Cathyf, that's an interesting point. Frankly when a once covert agent is outed, in a better world she'd be pensioned off or offered job retraining and help finding other employment.


I do not BTW see how the education she was offered in any way prepared her for her stated assignment. Another stupid move.

Was she someone's "protege" or is this just further evidence of magaerial incompetence?

MayBee

OK. So the CIA sent Joe for the good of the whole government. Fine.

I don't find that especiallly interesting or controversial. The point is that Cheney didn't send him and Joe wanted badly to make it look as if he did while his fans try hard to make it look as if Joe never wanted to make it appear that way. At the same time, he wanted badly to make it look as if Valerie had no part. That part doesn't seem especially important to me, but it is to him and his fans for some reason.

maryrose

verner:
Val may look like Shirley Temple but can she tapdance down a flight of stairs backwards or did target practice interfere with her dance lessons?

maryrose

cathyf:
Val is a hanger-on kind of like Ward Churchill-tenured but useless-a pathetic shell of their former selves. One true statement by Joe at press conference-he said it was going to be a tough lawsuit to bring and to pursue to victory.We shall see. I loved how real world events usurped their on camera time..

JM Hanes

Jeff

"the mission was evidently understood by the participants at that meeting to be on behald not just of the CIA but of the government altogether, as is indicated by the INR memo, or rather the underlying INR analyst’s notes, which say the meeting was convened (apparently, he notes incorrectly, by Wilson’s wife) with the idea that the CIA and the larger U.S. Government send Wilson to Niger to sort out the Niger-Iraq-uranium story. "

Except that State was decidedly against sending Wilson, which is why he was ultimately instructed not to approach any current Niger officials and not to deviate from a specific, very limited set of questions. It was State that saw Wilson's excursion as a boondoggle, and they clearly didn't want him mucking up the works for the current Ambassador.

Now it's certainly possible that the Val crowd tried selling the Wilson trip to State by saying Cheney wanted it, but the fact that they even bothered to send him given the intentionally debilitating constraints on any possible "investigating" he might actually be able to do, suggests that, at best, this was a CYA affair. Wilson's description of his debrief, where he struggles to make it sound like he was the one in a hurry, is priceless.

cathyf

Yeah, stop making derogatory comments about Shirley Temple. She was a devoted and productive public servant as protocol chief. (One time my dad sat next to her at a state dinner. All he could think about was that when he was 5 years old he saved cereal box tops so that he could send away for a Shirley Temple glass. When it came, he refused to drink out of any other glass -- it would need to be washed after each use ready to go again, and whenever it got lost there was a crisis! Dad tried not to be too tongue-tied sitting there next to his First Love, but does worry that this very nice, very competent public servant probably thought that he was a complete idiot!)

cathy :-)

maryrose

jeff:
multiple bloggers have requested brevity from you-use TM's style of blogging as an example-we already know how smart you are..but are you in the top 1% of the country?

Jeff

Cecil

Among your many bothersome rhetorical ticks is that you usually start your comments toward me with some annoying and non-substantive exclamation like, "Oh nonsense, Jeff."

The misleading bit in the SSCI report on this issue is its emphasis, for instance at 44-45, on the point that there were no "documents" circulating in the IC at the time of Wilson's trip. And I take it as a sign of how misleading the SSCI is on this point that a standard point that circulates on the right is that Wilson could not have said anything about the validity of the documents because the government did not come into their possession until October 2002 - or if he did, it must be evidence of some nefarious activity wherein Wilson and/or the CIA was actually involved in forging the documents or some such.

And obviously things like a "childlike signature" (or seals, or other enclosed documents) wouldn't be included in such a "verbatim text."

Robb-Silberman, p. 214n214:

The errors in the original documents, whicj indicated they were forgeries, also occur in the February 2002 report that provided a "verbatim" text of the agreement, indicating that the original reporting was based on the forged documents.

the rest of what you say doesn't reach my point, even if it was just CIA and INR in the meeting. And yes, there's no question Wilson underlined the connection to OVP, and there's no question it bolstered his claim that OVP should have seen the results, as, ironically, the SSCI concludes. (And yes, I put no special importance on the fact that even the SSCI concludes that Wilson was right on this score. I think Wilson was on good ground in claiming that he had every reason to expect that OVP learned of the results of his trip, whether the SSCI shares that view or not.) It seems to be undisputed that Wilson was told his mission was conceived in order to address a question or questions raised by OVP, just as the INR analyst who wrote up the negative report on the Niger story in March 2002 was told it was in response to interest from OVP - not his home Department or anywhere else. And I suspect that's actually what happened, though we will have to wait until someone addresses whether Cheney read the February 12 DIA report on February 12, whether he asked his CIA briefer about the Niger story on February, and whether the meeting that CPD held to figure out how to address it was on February 12. If so, we'll have very strong evidence that the story Wilson was told by CIA - that his mission was in response to questions from OVP - was accurate.

maryrose

I love Shirley Temple! The scene with her and Bojangles dancing in the" Little Rebel" is a classic! My youngest sister was always jealous of Shirley because my other younger sister and I would always make such a fuss about her when she was on TV. At an Oscar ceremony a few years ago Robin Williams and Marisa Tomei said the person they wanted to meet the most was Shirley Temple. They were in awe of her as she sat on the stage.

clarice

Tellm e, Jeff, why even though Wilson's trip was short, his answers not designed to get much and questions confined to out of office sources, why he should believe that his report which confirmed what the IC already believed, would have been so significant it would have been brought to the VP's special attention? Is it because he was so super special?

maryrose

Shirley Temple as an Ambassador puts Joe Wilson to shame!

Patton

Jeff, please stop arguing points you know are untrue by only citing part of the story.

You know VERY WELL that Wilson himslef admits he had seen no forged documents and nobody had discussed forged documents with him. Wilson himself claims to have only heard about the forged documents when the UN
had their press briefing over a year later.

So Wilson himself proves he had seen no forged documents and bnoone had talked to him about forged documents.

In addition, as Tenent said, Wilson doesn't mentions documents of any kind in any way in his report after his trip.

MayBee

But Jeff, what you say only underlines one problem with the whole Wilson affair. He only "knew" what he thought he knew. He thought he knew OVP sent him, he thought he knew the importance of his trip, he thought he knew the importance of his findings, he thought he knew where his reports ended up. He was perhaps wrong or not fully informed, yet he's made a name for himself implying he's debunked that which he does not have full knowledge of.

Sue

misleading the SSCI is on this point that a standard point that circulates on the right is that Wilson could not have said anything about the validity of the documents because the government did not come into their possession until October 2002

Actually Jeff, Wilson himself has already debunked your idea who could have said something. He did that when it was clear he saw classified documents he shouldn't have seen, as you alluded to earlier. That is what happens when you lie (or tell the truth, whichever the case may be) to inflate your importance.

Sue

debunked your idea who could have said something

Should read debunked your idea HE could have said something

Redcoat

MayBee

He thought he knew OVP sent him,

I think it is convenient for him to say he did,but he cannot possibly conclude,unless he is seriously deluded,that the reason his wife,and others sent him, was to go,and return with the conclusion they wanted him to reach.

These were later made public in his Op-Ed,and various other articles where he was a source.

Extraneus

Considering the fact that at least 10 countries in Africa have confirmed uranium deposits, two of which exceed Niger's in terms of inferred volume, it was clearly illogical from day one that a visit by this clown to see a limited set of contacts in this one country could possibly contradict the 16 words in the SOTU speech. Ergo, see Syl's comment above.

JM Hanes

Jeff:

"And the fact is that Wilson did nothing to encourage the idea that OVP sent him on his mission."

"And yes, there's no question Wilson underlined the connection to OVP"

I'm sure you have an explanation for this apparent contradiction, but in light of Maybee's excerpt from Wilson's official bio, which I notice you have yet to acknowledge, you might want to hoist a white flag on this question altogether.

Sara (The Squiggler)

Why the CIA cabal led by a half-brain treasonist is so dangerous. They lie, lie, lie.

At his blog, Larry Johnson, the mainstream media’s go-to guy for all things CIA- and Valerie Plame-related, posts a blatant lie about Ehud Olmert’s military service as part of a smear against President Bush:

Apparently not content to let the U.S. do a self-immolation act in the Middle East by itself, Israel decided to set itself on fire by invading Lebanon. Burn baby burn? Like George Bush, Israel’s Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert, never served in a combat unit and launched military operations without thinking the matter through. In fact, Olmert reportedly never even served in the military. I raise this because there is one simple question Israel cannot answer about the current operations—what is their strategic military objective. Olmert has somehow persuaded the Israeli military to ignore strategy, think tactically, and in the process become really stupid. The events in the next several weeks will expose as myth the canard that you can secure a nation by killing terrorists. No you can’t.

The truth of the matter:

At the Israeli government site, Ehud Olmert’s resumé: Prime Minister - Curriculum Vitae.

November 1963 – Began his military service in the 13th Regiment, Golani Brigade. During his service he suffered injuries to a leg and an arm, which required prolonged medical treatment. He completed his military service in 1971 at the “Hamahane” newspaper.

[ ... ]

1979-1982 – Volunteered in the IDF and completed officers’ course while serving as MK. Volunteered for reserve service in Lebanon.

AND

Olmert served with the Israel Defense Forces in the Golani combat brigade. While in service he was injured and temporarily released. He underwent many treatments. Later he completed his military duties as a journalist for the IDF magazine BaMahane. During the Yom Kippur war he joined the headquarters of Ariel Sharon as a military correspondent. Already a Knesset member, he decided to go through an Officer’s course, at the age of 35, in 1980.

SEE: MSM Expert Lies about Ehud Olmert for links and sources

I wish someone could explain to me why this group of Larry Johnson, Ray McGovern, Joe Wilson, Valerie Plame and all the rest of their groupies are so pro-terrorist. Are they so antisemitic that anyone against Israel/Jews is okay by them? or is it all about some kind of big money deals? I know they hate Bush, but even that hatred doesn't make sense to me. I used to think it had something to do with how gender confused individuals couldn't deal with the blatant masculinity of someone labeled a Cowboy, but even that doesn't make sense in light of the willingness to sell the country out.


windansea

give Jeff a break...

Fitmas has fizzled like a piece of damp coal

The MSM is either ignoring or making fun of Jane Bond and Munchausen

Joe's fan club is shrinking...

maybe Jeff can find a new hobby....the new dynamic in the middle east perhaps?

a mind is a terrible thing to waste

Rick Ballard

"the new dynamic in the middle east perhaps?"

Please, no. 18,000 word comments on "proportionate response" would only lead to glazed looks and people muttering "what the hell is a bicycle of violets?".

Stick with it, Jeff. Aptitude for recursion is a rare gift.

Neo

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4880116/

MR. RUSSERT: The president spoke to the nation in January, Dr. Rice was on this program June 8. On July 6, you appeared on MEET THE PRESS. You wrote an op-ed piece in The New York Times and said this: "I have little choice but to conclude that some of the intelligence related to Iraq's nuclear weapons program was twisted to exaggerate the Iraqi threat."

And then eight days after your appearance on MEET THE PRESS and that New York Times piece, Robert Novak wrote a syndicated column and this is what it said: "Wilson never worked for the CIA, but his wife, Valerie, is an agency operative on weapons of mass destruction. Two senior administration officials told me his wife suggested sending Wilson to Niger."

When you saw that, your reaction?

AMB. WILSON: Well, I was furious. He had contacted--actually, he had spoken to a

stranger who happened to know me on July 8, and I outline that conversation in the book.

MR. RUSSERT: Let me do that, because this is important. This is just two days after your appearance on MEET THE PRESS. Two days, this is "Tuesday afternoon, July 8, six days before Novak's article about Valerie and me, a friend showed up at my office with a strange and disturbing tale. He had been walking down Pennsylvania Avenue towards my office, near the White House, when he came upon Novak. He asked Novak if he could walk a block or two with him as they were headed in the same direction. Novak acquiesced. Striking up a conversation, my friend, without revealing that he knew me, asked Novak about the uranium controversy. `It was a minor problem,' Novak replied, and opined that the administration should have dealt with it weeks before. My friend then asked Novak what he thought about me. Novak answered, `Wilson's an (expletive).' The CIA sent him. His wife, Valerie, works for the CIA. She's a weapons of mass destruction specialist. She sent him.' At that point, my friend and Novak went their separate ways. My friend headed straight for my office a couple of blocks away. Once he related this unsettling story to me, I asked him to immediately write down the details of the conversation and afterwards ushered him out of my office."

AMB. WILSON: This was before Novak had any confirmation because he talked to me a couple of days later seeking a confirmation of my wife's employment. The odds of his running into somebody on Pennsylvania Avenue who knew he, since I don't know a lot of people in Washington, are remote. The question I have in all of this is how many other people was Novak--how many other strangers on the streets of Washington, D.C., was Novak sharing this information with before he even had enough to permit him to go to print?

MR. RUSSERT: Why does your friend accost Mr. Novak? Do you know?

AMB. WILSON: Well, I think anybody who is a familiar face on television is frequently spoken to on the sidewalks. It happens even to me, and I'm not nearly as familiar as Mr. Novak.

MR. RUSSERT: Again, this was only two days after July 6 MEET THE PRESS and New York Times, but now you say something else in your book and this is it: "After my appearance on CNN in early March 2003, when I first asserted that the U.S. government knew more about the Niger uranium matter than it was letting on, I am told by a source close to the House Judiciary Committee that the Office of the Vice President--either the vice president himself or, more likely, his chief of staff, Lewis (`Scooter') Libby, chaired a meeting at which a decision was made to a `workup' on me. As I understand it, this meant they were going to take a closer look at who I was and what my agenda might be. The immediate effect of the workup, I am told by a member of the press, citing White House sources, was a long harangue against the two of us within the White House walls. Over a period of several months, Libby evidently seized opportunities to rail openly against me as an `[expletive] playboy' who went on a boondoggle `arranged by his CIA wife'--and was a Democratic Gore supporter to boot."

You're saying that in March the White House started talking about you and your "CIA wife"?

AMB. WILSON: That's my understanding from not just that one particular source but corroborated by other sources and offered actually by other sources from different walks of life, that after I appeared on CNN and said I thought the government knew more about this Niger business than was letting on, there was this meeting at which it was decided to run an intelligence collection operation against me, which led to the learning of my wife's identity and her employment.

MR. RUSSERT: Now, you've asked Bob Novak to reveal his sources. Would you reveal your sources?

AMB. WILSON: Actually, I haven't asked Bob Novak to reveal his sources. And I think you can understand after you interviewed Mr. Woodward last week that when 75 people speak to Mr. Woodward with the authorization of the president and only two of them want to be identified, you can imagine that those who have other information but are fearful of what the White House might do, they also do not want to be identified. And I say that because, of course, I mention in the book that there are also reports from journalists back to me that they're fearful of writing these stories. One journalist said because he was afraid he would end up in Guantanamo, which is basically I think a metaphor for their being cut off. Another one said that, of course, they had two children in private schools and a mortgage. Now, I've since heard from other journalists that even the most mildly critical articles about this administration yield top-level phone calls back to their editors including phone calls from Mr. Libby himself to their editors.

The Woodward reference is interesting.

clarice

Besides Russert, who else did Libby call?

Neo

It is becoming more and more obvious that reading the grand jury testimony or a Wilson civil suit deposition, or both, of Grossman, assuming it's complete, would fill in most of the blanks.

One of the key questions would surround any possible connection between Grossman and Joe Wilson's friend who (conveniently) ran into Bob Novak on Pennsylvania Ave.

It keeps looking that Grossman tried to do some cleanup and made an even bigger mess.

clarice

Wouldn't it be fun it the defendants impleaded Armitage and interpleaded Grossman? That is, re Armitage--if there was any damage it was Armitage who caused it, and re Grossman--we were the ones damaged and it was Grossman who caused it by his lies to protect Joe and Armitage.

Specter

Jeff,

Settle down. The point is that most people believe that it was Joe that said the OVP sent him, and if he did not say it exactly in those words, he certainly implied it. He was, and still is, very into tooting his own horn about what an important man he is.

Bottom line is that there is a letter or recommendation written by Val pointing to her husband as the best one to go on the trip. She put his name into play.

Add to that the fact that Libby defense team has 5 witnesses who will swear that Joey told them all about Val before any of this became public knowledge and the whole thing is dead in the water.

All that is left is the political grandstanding. Given the lack of coverage that Joe and Val seem to be getting over this and what do you think MSM really sees this as...If they thought they could get political mileage towards bringing down Bush they would have published it every day, every nuance, every word spoken by the dynamic duo. Yet we see....almost nothing. Why? and Bush's ratings keep climbing....wow.

Sue

The story about the encounter on the street is weird. The person who spoke to Novak did so to find out what Novak knew. That much is obvious even to a casual observer. It was not a chance encounter. But, here is where I'm confused, I guess. The timeline gets me, I suppose. Did Novak already talk to Wilson before the encounter?

Rocco

Just found this, not sure if it means anything but guess what embassy sits on the banks of Rock Creek in DC?

And we all know who chairs Rock Creek Corporation.

lurker

"But in so doing, you are acknowledging that Wilson was on firm ground, even if it was all a devious plan, to claim that he went on his trip on behalf of the larger US Government, and not just the CIA."

I don't see how this acknowledges Wilson being on firm ground.

"I think Wilson was on good ground in claiming that he had every reason to expect that OVP learned of the results of his trip, whether the SSCI shares that view or not.)"

While I disagree on this one, Cheney is on stronger ground to not being required to read Wilson's report.

lurker

"It seems to be undisputed that Wilson was told his mission was conceived in order to address a question or questions raised by OVP, just as the INR analyst who wrote up the negative report on the Niger story in March 2002 was told it was in response to interest from OVP - not his home Department or anywhere else."

This is not how I'm reading this as written by Cheney in the sidebar of the newspaper article. I believe that Cheney never sent the questions directing Wilson to go to Niger or to ask questions regarding the yellowcake. I believe he was just trying to find out who sent Wilson and approved his trip investigation.

Specter

spot on lurker.

lurker

Oh crud!

Howard Dean is up to no good

lurker

Thanks, Specter!

A CEO will move on to other things if you haven't gotten his or her attention within five minutes. And a CEO can decide which reports to read or not. When I read statements in the Wilson Pony Show case relating to his report (unwritten) being ignored, etc., I thought these statements were strange.

Here is Ben Johnson's article (I doubt that he is related to Scary).

lurker

Slightly OT, here are some good points about Hezbollah

Deagle

Sorry, just too many comments to read...and hopefully they did not get serious. If this lawasuit (hehe) does not get thrown out before it gets to court, I will be amazed. Even if they prevail, it will be a joke. What the hell is going on today with all these crazy lawsuits anyway...

cathyf
Just found this, not sure if it means anything but guess what embassy sits on the banks of Rock Creek in DC?

And we all know who chairs Rock Creek Corporation.

It doesn't mean anything. Rock Creek Park winds from the tony northern suburbs of DC down the whole NW side into downtown DC (it enters the Potomac right near the Watergate). It's like being near Central Park in Manhatten -- a big chunk of Manhatten is near the park.

(I grew up directly across Rock Creek park from where the Lebanese embassy is. It is about a 1-2 blocks from Calvert Street, down a stunningly beautiful street overlooking the bluff into the park, next to the Shoreham hotel. On the other side of the Shoreham is the intersection of Calvert St and Connecticut Ave where both of those street cross the park over long high bridges. Both bridges saw several suicides per year, since they were so high that it was impossible to survive a fall from one of them. I went to kindergarten in the public school that was across the street from there. My best friend from 4-6 grade lived in the basement of the Lebanese embassy because her dad was the caretaker and mom the maid there. They were Spaniards, and they moved out when her dad got a better job at the Spanish embassy. When my friend had her 5th or 6th birthday, she had a party for all of her little friends in the basement apartment, and she and another Spaniard, a little boy in our class, did a display of Spanish dancing. Lebanon was a majority Catholic country back then, and the ambassador was Catholic. Even though they lived in our parish, then went to a Maronite Rite church somewhere else.)

(Joe's office was a couple of mile downstream where Massachusetts Ave. crosses the park. Right next to where DC's largest mosque is. Also, not too far from the Vice President's mansion, which is at the Naval Observatory.)

cathy :-)

clarice

Cathy--that is a beautiful area. Oyster school , a bilingual school, is one of the best elementary public schools in the area.
I live off a finger of Rock Creek Park futher towards the Md border..It does wind throughout the city and into the suburbs.

cathyf

I went to kindergarten at JF Oyster. One of the few things I remember of that year was the birthday party in the embassy basement. Oh, yeah, and the summer after kindergarten I went to the day camp that was down next to the creek directly below that area. We used to walk mostly, but when we drove that street with the embassy was a short scramble up the hillside from where we had camp. Lebanon has a very cool flag with a cedar tree on it, and the only thing that distinguished the embassy from the other mansions on the street was the flag out front.

Back in those days DC was a lot more "inner city" than now. Then the park was a huge barrier separating very rich from very poor. We were on the "poor side" -- in a little quiet pocket, right up against the park. In 1967 the riots came within 2 blocks from us. I remember the National Guard troops on the corners, the curfew, and a troop truck driving down 20th St in front of our house. My parents tried to sell the house in 1969, listed it at $31,000 and got one offer of $22,000. Six years later they sold it in one day for $79,000. The neighborhood is now quite wealthy and full of fantastic restaurants. (18th St and Columbia Rd used to be all gun shops, used furniture and pawn shops; now it is every kind of fabulous restaurant you can imagine.)

cathy :-)

Barney Frank

Jeff,
You said:
"The point Wilson makes, at EPIC and elsewhere, about going on his mission on behalf of the government and not, nor not only, the CIA ...........acknowledging that Wilson was on firm ground, even if it was all a devious plan, to claim that he went on his trip on behalf of the larger US Government, and not just the CIA."

In his EPIC speech Wilson said:

"I just want to assure you that that American ambassador who has been cited in reports in the New York Times and in the Washington Post, and now in the Guardian over in London, who actually went over to Niger on behalf of the government--not of the CIA but of the government--and came back in February of 2002 and told the government that there was nothing to this story..."

I have defended your forthrightness here before but this stuff is simply disingenuous and you know it.
You state at least twice that Wilson's point is that he was not ONLY or JUST working for the CIA but also the larger government as a whole.
Read his quote. He specifically says he was NOT working on behalf of the CIA "but [on behalf] of the government."
You misrepresent his statement and misstate both what he said and implied.
Nonsense (to use one of Cecil's "rhetorical ticks") like this does not enhance your credibility.

Jeff

I'm sure you have an explanation for this apparent contradiction

See? This is the problem with the enduring misconceptions on the right. There is no contradiction. Following Tom's qualification, I will say that nothing in Wilson's public statements encouraged the idea that OVP sent him on his mission, but he certainly encouraged the idea that his mission was connected to OVP insofar as he was told - as the INR analyst was told with regard to his parallel report - that his mission was conceived in response to question(s) from OVP. That is a real and robust connection, which in fact OVP denied in the summer of 2003 and in the fall of 2003. That is a connection that is still denied by many on the right, although sometimes in modified form (it wasn't only questions from OVP that prompted the mission to Niger - it remains to be seen how true that is). We'll see how robust the connection was, but there's no question it was real; and there's no question Wilson was told his mission was designed to respond to questions from OVP. How robust the connection is - to what degree the question(s) from OVP triggered the trip, as it seems to me to have done - will be answered by nailing down exactly what happened on February 12, 2002. Now, rereading that portion of the SSCI report, it's perfectly clear that CPD had discussions on February 12 about how to respond to OVP's question(s) about the Niger story, since those discussions eventuated in deciding on Wilson, and by the next day CPD was cabling to Niamey looking for its concurrence on that decision. The question that remains, I suppose, is whether there were discussions about a mission to Niger before they got word of OVP's interest. I bet not. Which means that we will be able to nail down that it was in fact OVP's question or questions that triggered Wilson's trip, just as Wilson was told.

And that's a pretty robust connection between Wilson's trip and OVP. Wilson certanily believed that was the connection, since he'd been told as much, so there's no problem I can see in underlining it. And it is of course different from saying he was sent by OVP, as though OVP set up the mission and sent him on it.

Same goes for Wilson's bio, obviously.

As for the forgeries, again, the February 2002 report on the Niger-Iraq agreement was based on those forgeries, contained verbatim text of them, and contained errors that led to the easy discovery that the documents themselves were forgeries.

Syl

Jeff

It does not matter. It really doesn't. You're just wasting your time and making yourself look foolish.

Wilson was debriefed orally. After that point, Wilson didn't have a clue what happened.

It's all rhetoric. And the administration was responding to the PERCEPTION the media and public had that Cheney sent Joe and therefore Cheney would receive Joe's report.

A report that wasn't what Joe claimed it to be in the first place.

Dumber people than you have figured this out. So what's your problem?

Jeff

Syl

Tell me, did OVP acknowledge in the summer of 2003 that its question(s) to the CIA about the Niger story triggered the trip, even though OVP did not conceive the mission itself? Maybe tomorrow I'll go through some of the deeply misleading and false things that Cathie Martin said as press person for OVP.

And again, Wilson's claim that OVP very well should have received his report was well-founded. Indeed, OVP probably did receive the report, it just appears that it was not flagged at all for them, which was a failure on the part of the CIA.

clarice

Why would they flag something that simply reiterated what the original report has said--that Iraq had tried to purchase yellowcake in Africa?
Even the SSCI said the quick decision to send Joe (24 hours) was evidence that the Cheney off hand inquiry was a pretext for sending Munchausen on his Mission.

lurker

From what I have read so far, the answer is negative.

While Wilson's claim on his own part is "well-founded", but a claim is a claim. This is not a proof that OVP issued a request or approval to send Wilson to Niger. OVP did not receive the report right away but 8 months later. Even if OVP received the report, Cheney is not obligated to read it.

If I understand it, the report did not debunk the 16-words but Wilson's mouth did.

lurker

Pre-text? To cover up good ole Rocky?

lurker

OT: Boy, isn't this the third time all of the bloggers are talking about Scary Larry in the past month?

Flopping Aces, Ace of Spades, Protein Wisdom, Sister Toldjah.

Sara (The Squiggler)

Jeff, for cryin' out loud, who cares. Joe Wilson has spent the better part of 3 years implying by design that the VP is responsible for his trip and everything else gone wrong in his loser life. Whether it was an implication that others ran with or his own sins of ommission or commission isn't important. The final conclusion the public has made is that the WH/VP sent him and that they "outed" his wife to punish him. The fact that only children think in terms of being "punished" and certainly not busy executives trying to run a country. It was stupid back when it started, it is stupid now. Why someone who is apparently as smart as you are continue to make your points from the perspective of a child claiming punishment is beyond me.

None of us know why the CIA decided to send Joe Wilson to Niger. We do know from Cheney's notes that he not only did not send him but that he was flabbergasted over him being sent and sent without creds or debriefings. It made no sense to Cheney then and it makes even less sense now. Sort of like Joe Wilson. Gee perhaps hatched from the same brain ... with the initials VP or maybe LJ or maybe even RMcG

Specter

Jeff,

Guess you didn't read Barney's post from 5:53 just above yours. Obviously too busy writing yet another long diatribe to notice. All equivocating aside - Wilson did say at least once - I WAS NOT SENT BY THE CIA. The impression he gave was that it was OVP. No matter what you point back to, just ask people who haven't followed this closely. See what they say.

Clearly, 5 witnesses to Joe telling them about Val PRIOR to her outing tells you something. Stop beating minor semantics points to death. This is going to be fun to watch Joe and Val squirm on the stand.

Look at it this way. They blame Cheney, Libby, and Rove. Tell us what evidence they have that these three started this plot? What? We already know that UGO was the first to leak (after Joey boy that is). He is not named in the suit - at least not yet. And what did Cheney say? What evidence can you point to from all of the research you did? That goes for Rove too. What "I heard that too" or "You know that too" is a conspiracy - when Novak called Rove? Get your head on straight.

verner

Quite right Clarice. Joe's trip must have been way down on the food chain. Wasn't his mission described as being arranged by low-level operatives? Alan Foley, the WINPAC chief had never even heard of Valerie Plame, or Joe. And you make an excellent point that Joe's trip was planned well before Cheney made the request. In other words, the junket that Ms. Plame orchestrated for her husband was already set--but since we have no paperwork to speak of,(it's either "classified" or non-existant) there's no way for the public to know all of the details

So the question arises, if Wilson's trip was arranged before the VP's request, why was he really going? Are we really suppose to believe that operations at the CIA were so poorly run that Joe was the best candidate to send to investigate such an important request from the big boss Cheney? Wilson didn't even have a security clearance. What was the big hurry, they couldn't wait a few days to find someone who did?

I'm sure that there were dozens of former/current State Department officials etc. who had credentials that were much better than his for such an important mission.

How do you explain all of that Jeff--in 500 words or less.

Sara (The Squiggler)

OT: Boy, isn't this the third time all of the bloggers are talking about Scary Larry in the past month?

Flopping Aces, Ace of Spades, Protein Wisdom, Sister Toldjah.

Posted by: lurker | July 16, 2006 at 07:49 PM

Me too! Me too!

clarice

And don't forget he was given a series of questions to stick to and those had already been asked by others..and he was directed to speak only to out of office folks whose personal knowledge was dated.

lurker

How about less than 16 words?

The Wilsons should blame this Wilson Dog Pony show on themselves.

lurker

Can you guys make this simpler than the "less than 16 words" as above? Maybe something simpler will help Jeff see it?

Sara (The Squiggler)

Joe Wilson is a liar!

How's that for simple?

Specter

perfect Sara

lurker

Ha!

Joe Wilson is a narcissist.

Syl

Jeff

Syl

Tell me, did OVP acknowledge in the summer of 2003 that its question(s) to the CIA about the Niger story triggered the trip, even though OVP did not conceive the mission itself? Maybe tomorrow I'll go through some of the deeply misleading and false things that Cathie Martin said as press person for OVP.

That makes NO DAMN DIFFERENCE, Jeff. 'Triggering the trip' is PASSIVE. Cheney did not send Wilson on the trip therefore Cheney wasn't waiting with eyes focused on the horizon looking for Joe to come down the road with the answer to the question--do we depose Saddam or not.

And again, Wilson's claim that OVP very well should have received his report was well-founded. Indeed, OVP probably did receive the report, it just appears that it was not flagged at all for them, which was a failure on the part of the CIA.

No, Wilson's claim was unfounded because he lied about what was in his report. And what was IN the report was the basis for its distribution.

You're a waste of time, Jeff.

Redcoat

Sara (The Squiggler)

Joe Wilson is a liar!

How's that for simple?

That explains everything,if Wison did not lie in a very public fashion,mainly his N.Y Times piece,none of this would have happened.

We would have no idea who Valerie Plame is,less of an idea who Joe Wilson is, Pat Fitzgerald would still have some credibility,and Scooter Libby would have his job.

The crux of the issue is, Joe Wilson is a liar.

Jeff

Wow, clarice, that's a lot of concise wrongness.

Why would they flag something that simply reiterated what the original report has said--that Iraq had tried to purchase yellowcake in Africa?

The answer, clarice, is because the whole point was to see if the original report could be corroborated. Which should tell you that, contra the talking points you are working from, the report based on Wilson's trip did not corroborate the existing Ferbuary 2002 report. That claim did not get worked up and made by the administration until some time in 2003.

Even the SSCI said the quick decision to send Joe (24 hours) was evidence that the Cheney off hand inquiry was a pretext for sending Munchausen on his Mission.

Can you point me to the place where the SSCI says any such thing, it's certainly not in the main text. Maybe it's in the back where any of the members could say any such thing as they pleased. Is that where it is? Because it's not included in the actual report.

I'm really quite curious. And since this is evidently your perspective, whether it's in the SSCI or not, I'd really like to hear how this was supposed to work. So the claim is not that there were questions from State and the Pentagon as well as OVP that prompted CPD to conceive the mission to Niger and contact Wilson about it (which I think of as the reasonable rightwing version), but rather the CIA cabal was lying wait and pounced on the opportunity to unfurl their plot when OVP did in fact pose questions to the CIA briefer on February 12? Is that the idea? And so on this view - as on my best interpretation of the SSCI - it really was OVP's questions that prompted the trip. The only difference is that I think it was a good faith effort to actually provide information on something that mattered to OVP, where you think it was . . . I'm trying to get this . . . part of a plan to provide (false?) confirmation of what Cheney wanted to hear, so that the Bush administration would be set up to make bad arguments weakly supported to take us to war?

I'm quite serious in my question - I'm trying to see just what the claim is. And how does your claim that OVP's questions were just a pretext to send Wilson square with your claim that Wilson provided support for the original report? Or is your claim that it really was just a luxe junket to Niger for Wilson to drum up some business, and OVP was the requisite pretext, there was no real political content to it after all? And who was in on helping Joe out like that beyond his wife exactly? Is this connected to the anti-administration CIA cabal, or an independent matter?

Specter

Jeff,

Give up. You are playing semantics and minutia. It doesn't matter. Where is your evidence about the plot by the plaintiffs? All you seem to want to talk about is a minor detail in the whole thing. Geez...get over it already.

/shrugatperseveranceinfaceofhumiliatingdefeat

topsecretk9

Junket.

CIA? Incompetent.

JM Hanes

Jeff

"This is the problem with the enduring misconceptions on the right."

You mistake the misconception. You apparently think "the right" is claiming that the Val crowd would have come up with Wilson's excursion whether or not the CIA found itself on the hot seat with the Veep. While some obviously believe they were taking advantage of the moment, I'm not hearing folks dispute the idea that inquiries from the Veep "triggered" the mission in a general sense. I imagine it triggered all kinds of activity -- a robust measure of ass covering among them -- at the CIA.

In terms of causation, however, you simply can't parse "In 2002, at the request of Vice President Dick Cheney, Wilson was assigned by the C.I.A. to investigate..." into something substantively "different from saying he was sent by OVP, as though OVP set up the mission and sent him on it." We all know Scooter Libby didn't set this trip up, so that sort of particularity is hardly the issue.

Even if the bio had read "at the request of Vice President Dick Cheney, the CIA assigned Wilson to investigate...." your struggle to deny the attempted, unabashed, linkage here on Wilson's part seems more than strained. What I can't figure out is why you're wasting so much time on trying to extract him from this particular hole. Whether he did the lion's share of digging by himself or by proxy, the bio makes his intention far clearer than any assertion by you as to what Wilson "certainly believed" or didn't.

Syl

Jeff (to clarice)

The answer, clarice, is because the whole point was to see if the original report could be corroborated. Which should tell you that, contra the talking points you are working from, the report based on Wilson's trip did not corroborate the existing Ferbuary 2002 report. That claim did not get worked up and made by the administration until some time in 2003.

No. IIRC Cheney asked 'what do you know about this?' referring to the memo that referred to a sales agreement between Iraq and Niger.

Right then and there, standing in front of Cheney, the CIA could have said. 'What we know about it is that it is highly unlikely that this could be true'.

Wilson came back, said nothing about forgeries, mentioned the '99 trip, and said an actual sale of yellowcake to Iraq by Niger was highly unlikely.

Which everyone knew already. Except the '99 bit.

So wtf ARe you trying to prove?

Wilson not only went on a boondoggle, it has been proven it was a boondoggle because he was limited in what he could ask and who he could ask, and he, indeed, came back with no new information except for a wee detail that strengthened the notion that Iraq had attempted to open trade talks re yellowcake.

Wilson was sent with a limited mandate. He returned with limited information.

You, just like Joe Wilson, are making out his trip to be more important than it was. Wilson's little trip to Niger was of NO IMPORTANCE WHATSOEVER.

vnjagvet

Jeff:

A few questions which may be answered True or False:

1. Either Cheney or someone in the OVP requested the CIA to send someone to Africa to check out whether Iraq sought to purchase uranium in Africa.

2. Either Cheney or someone in the OVP had input into the selection of Wilson as the person to check out whether Iraq sought to purchase uranium in Africa.

3. Either Cheney or someone in the OVP set the parameters on the investigation on the issue of whether Iraq sought to purchase uranium in Africa.


Jeff

I'm not hearing folks dispute the idea that inquiries from the Veep "triggered" the mission in a general sense.

Okay, my mistake, happy to hear my friends on the right and I are in agreement on that point.

vnjagvet

"questions" should be "statements"

topsecretk9

Novak on meet the press today:

MR. NOVAK: A third party close to the primary source called me after the investigation was launched and said, and said that he believed that it was—he believed he had given me inadvertent—inadvertently given me information—this information.

Doesn't it just sound like Novak is saying the 3rd party called Novak on his own, not at the instruction of UGO?

"he believed"?

Either UGO knew he inadvertently talked or didn't, and sounds like 3rd party panicked and witness tampered.

Because Novak, on H&C's, said that 3rd called to say this inadvertent bit...and Novak said he didn't know if it was inadvertent but also didn't think it was a deliberate smear.

clarice

It's from the Roberts report:
"The former ambassador's wife suggested her husband for the trip to Niger in February 2002. The former ambassador had traveled previously to Niger on behalf of the CIA, also at the suggestion of his wife, to look into another matter not related to Iraq. On February 12, 2002, the former ambassador's wife sent a memorandum to a Deputy Chief of a division in the CIA's Directorate of Operations which said, "[m]y husband has good relations with both the PM [prime minister] and the former Minister of Mines (not to mention lots of French contacts), both of whom could possibly shed light on this sort of activity." This was just one day before the same Directorate of Operations division sent a cable to one of its overseas stations requesting concurrence with the division's idea to send the former ambassador to Niger. " http://www.globalsecurity.org/intell/library/congress/2004_rpt/iraq-wmd-intell_pat-roberts.htm>fast work for the govt

There may be more in the main report and elsewhere, but I am not inclined to spend more time on this nuttiness.

JM Hanes

Jeff

"And again, Wilson's claim that OVP very well should have received his report was well-founded. Indeed, OVP probably did receive the report, it just appears that it was not flagged at all for them, which was a failure on the part of the CIA."

It also wasn't "Wilson's report" but a report in which Wilson remained nameless and in which his "findings," such as they were, were described as tending to confirm Iraqi interests. This doesn't look like a CIA failure, it looks like an attempt to avoid the serious embarassment of having to describe the actual Wilson mission itself.

topsecretk9

--It also wasn't "Wilson's report" but a report in which Wilson remained nameless and in which his "findings," such as they were, were described as tending to confirm Iraqi interests.--

And I could swear the SSCI says the report was not channeled the normal way (for such a sensitive urgent report /snark off), and went to the WH mailroom...intentional?


--This doesn't look like a CIA failure, it looks like an attempt to avoid the serious embarrassment of having to describe the actual Wilson mission itself.--

Shit! You mean on top of this embarrassment no one got a nondisclosure agreement?

Neo

Wilson could actually make the statement about the OVP receiving the report with greater certainty if he had actually written a report himself.

clarice

And frankly, I do not doubt that that is the only "classified" thing about Plame or the Mission that exists:An effort to cover up some really rotten or imbicelic stuff.

topsecretk9

Isn't it interesting Bill Harlow hasn't been cut loose to talk, like Novak and Rove? I think Fox said when contacted Harlow he said he could not talk as he was still cooperating in the investigation...

clarice

***imbecilic*******

topsecretk9

From Libby filing late March:

Documents pertaining to Mr. Wilson’s trip from Mr. Grossman’s files must also be examined carefully by the defense because Mr. Grossman may not be a disinterested witness. This week, Vanity Fair, the Washington Post and The New York Times, as well as other media outlets, reported that Richard Armitage, former Deputy Secretary of State, told Bob Woodward of the Washington Post that Ms. Wilson worked for the CIA. There has been media speculation that Mr. Woodward’s source and Mr. Novak’s source are the same person. If the facts ultimately show that Mr. Armitage or someone else from the State Department was also Mr. Novak’s primary source, then the State Department (and certainly not Mr. Libby) bears responsibility for the "leak" that led to the public disclosure of Ms. Wilson’s CIA identity.


3rd Party?

Rocco

The first reports the IC received about the purported agreement was on Oct. 15, 2001. The CIA's DO issued the report. CIA, DIA, DOE all considered the report to be possible. Only the INR regarded the report as highly suspect. The CIA wrote a Senior Executive Intelligence Brief (SEIB). The SEIB stated, "The quantity of yellowcake to be transferred could support the enrichment of enough uranium for at least one nuclear weapon."

But it wasn't until 3 months later when the IC received a 2nd report did Cheney ask his briefer for the CIA's analysis.

Wilson, the VIPS's, and the left are still screaming that the administration stovepiped intelligence to build a case for war. If that's the case, why didn't Cheney jump all over the initial report on Oct. 15th?

JM Hanes

tops

"...no one got a nondisclosure agreement?"

LOL! Interesting that Armitage, Grossman & Harlow are about the only silent players left, isn't it? And Novak's stranger, of course, whose identity I think I'd like to know most at this point.

Pete

Novak appeared on Meet the Press. He acknowledged that he had said earlier that the name was given to him by his source, but claims that he "misspoke".

Then he said that his original source gave him the name. Now he says that the original source did not give him the name.

Not only did Novak "misspeak" in July 2003 to Newsday (which stands by its story), but Novak also "misspoke" the same very thing twice in his earlier Meet the Press interview in Oct 2003.
http://msnbc.msn.com/id/3131258/

That is an awful number of "misspeaks" on a topic which goes right to the heart of who told Novak and what did he tell.

Novak is a liar.

Sara (The Squiggler)

Pete, pay attention. It depends on which name the questionner is asking about. The unnamed source at State "inadvertently" let it come out that Wilson's wife at CIA arranged Wilson's junket. That is a name. However, it is THE name as Novak did not learn THE name until he looked up Joseph Wilson in Who's Who. Then he learned THE name as Valerie Plame.

Sara (The Squiggler)

However, it is THE name should read ** However, it is not THE name **

Sara (The Squiggler)
From Libby filing late March:

Documents pertaining to Mr. Wilson’s trip from Mr. Grossman’s files must also be examined carefully by the defense because Mr. Grossman may not be a disinterested witness. This week, Vanity Fair, the Washington Post and The New York Times, as well as other media outlets, reported that Richard Armitage, former Deputy Secretary of State, told Bob Woodward of the Washington Post that Ms. Wilson worked for the CIA. There has been media speculation that Mr. Woodward’s source and Mr. Novak’s source are the same person. If the facts ultimately show that Mr. Armitage or someone else from the State Department was also Mr. Novak’s primary source, then the State Department (and certainly not Mr. Libby) bears responsibility for the "leak" that led to the public disclosure of Ms. Wilson’s CIA identity.

Okay, I have a theory ... surprise, surprise.

Grossman tells UGO the true nature of Wilson's trip. Probably a briefing and perhaps Grossman was the point man anyway and was filling his boss in on details. UGO, perhaps not realizing there is any significance to "our gal Val's" role, recounts to Novak the goofy details. Novak also admits that he didn't pick up on the significance until it became important to others.

Now my theory ... UGO then mentions back to Grossman his interview with Novak. Grossman panics and starts the whole ball of wax rolling. He calls Wilson right away to warn him. He or someone acting on his behalf also calls Novak to say the bean spilling was "inadvertent." And, he or someone acting on his behalf or maybe at Wilson's behest, waylays Novak on the street and pumps him for details and then reports to Wilson.

This is the only scenario I can come up with that accounts for UGO being given a complete free ride by everyone, including Fitzgerald. His tell may have been not only inadvertent but totally clueless that he said something he shouldn't have said.

For all UGO might have known, Wilson's wife was someone in the Agency's travel office.

Speaking of which, is there anyone who has any diplomatic travel experience? Is it normal for anyone asked to go on a public mission, such as this one, alone? And if CIA was contacting the embassy for their approval, wouldn't Joe have stayed at the Embassy or wouldn't they be tasked to make his travel and accomodation arrangements on the Niger end? Shouldn't there be public records on this?

Extraneus

If the CIA works like any other large organization which has to account for its spending, I'd bet there's an expense account on file, with an approval by the manager who signed off on the trip, and possibly that manager's manager. Assuming Joe was paid a consulting fee for his efforts, he'd have also sent them an invoice for that, which would also have been authorized for payment by responsible management in addition to some uninteresting finance person(s).

lurker

I don't think Cheney asked Wilson to corroborate the Niger - Iraq story. But Wilson's story ended up corroborating it anyway! The problem is that Wilson tried to tell the public that the SOTU's 16 words were inaccurate - that we went to war against Iraq because of Ray's OIL concepts (e.g., Iraq never sought or bought yellow cake from Niger).

The reason you (and Pete) keep hanging onto these little things is because you want to prove that we were wrong in going to war against Iraq. So far you haven't been successful. Captain's Quarters recent posts confirm the reasons for going to war against Iraq, btw.

Since Novak was released by Fitz, it's apparent that Fitz did not consider Novak a liar based on the information he was given by various people.

lurker

Questions:

1. AFter 15 years, were there enough corroboration of data on Saddam, his WMDs, and his intentions?

2. Wouldn't a phone call be sufficient in getting verification from Niger regarding the yellow cake?

3. If you were in Cheney's shoes, why would he need corroboration from a non-CIA without security clearance and NDA? He can get corroboration from more qualified people that he can trust.

4. Why would Cheney need more corroboration just from one report? After all, the Wilson report did confirm the data collected over the years!

Gee, you're not answering many questions posed to you, Jeff. All's Wilson had to do was to confirm the data and shut up and there wouldn't be a need for this frivolous case. He doesn't need to explain why and how he was sent to Niger either.

lurker

Media Matters ... funded by Soros.

Is that a surprise?

No.

Have the dems demanded the openness of Republican contributions in the past? Yet, they want to keep their own contributions private??

lurker

"In fact, the whole operation appears to be a political protection racket. Anyone who wants to approach these big-ticket donors who comprise the Democracy Alliance have to pay their way into the guild. Membership requires a $25,000 initiation fee and $30,000 a year from that point forward. If an organization makes these payments and becomes a "partner", then George Soros might decide to contribute to its cause. Without such a membership, however, Soros and Gill and the rest of the network have pledged to ignore fundraising requests."

Gee, lovely initiation fees.

Was this one of the meetings Plame and Wilson went to last Thursday?

Pete

Well Sara I will quote you Novak from Oct 2003:

NOVAK: No, I didn’t commit a crime by publishing her name. If she is a covert operative and the person who gave me the name knew that, which I’m not sure, I’m not sure she’s a covert operative, Tim

Here Novak is saying that he published the name (Plame). Then in the next sentence he is referring to the person who gave her the name.

Note THE NAME.

Lurker

Was there a crime committed, Pete? Were any damages inflicted? And was Plame considered a covert agent?

That was Novak's point when he was talking to Tim. He did not commit a crime by publishing her name, identity, or whatever. He's also implying that his original source was in the position to know whether Plame was covert or not.

I don't believe that this was what Novak was "misspeaking". Think he was "misspeaking" about something else, e.g., whether Plame was covert or not, crime committed, etc. I don't see it as a flat out or intentional lie, if any, especially in comparison to Wilson's lies. Especially when Wilson's agenda was to disprove the WH for all of its reasons for going to war against Iraq.

I believe that's what Sara was trying to say.

cathyf

Mrs. Valerie Elise Plame Wilson, like virtually every married woman, has more than one NAME. If UGO told Novak, "Wilson's wife" then he gave Novak THE NAME -- THE NAME being "Mrs. Wilson." If you want to argue that "Mrs. Wilson" might be "the name" but Mrs. Wilson isn't "THE NAME", then UGO gave Novak "the name" but not "THE NAME".

So Novak told people that UGO gave him "the name" by which he meant "Mrs. Wilson." It immediately became obvious that other people misinterpreted this statement to meant that Karl Rove and another WH official gave him the name "Valerie Elise Plame Wilson" and the "fact" that 2 WH officials knew all 4 of VEPW's names was "evidence" that the WH was very interested in her. (And it would have been, if it had been true.)

So Novak sees his words being interpreted in a way that Novak knows is false, and so he corrects the misinterpretation. Joe Wilson, on many occasions documented on this very thread, sits silently while his words are interpreted in ways that he knows are false.

So we have people who define what Novak did as "lying" while what Wilson did as "not lying." The same people then turn around and say that Bush lied. Well, by their we-get-to-make-up-whatever-definition-we-want rules, I would be proud to be considered a "liar" too.

cathy :-)

sbw

Joe WIlson is a guest on WAMU, Washington's (PBS) Diane Rehm Show now. (!) AM Eastern)

Join the show: 1-800-433-8850 (drshow@wamu.org) with a question!

sbw

*** 10 AM Eastern ***

Specter

Well...what you have to ask yourself Pete is what is the jury going to think? When Novak finally comes out and tells his side of the story, he says that he was given a direction to the name and then looked it up in Who's Who. So what if he was given the name directly by UGO or got it from the book? In fact - neither of those sources is Rove, Cheney, or Libby, correct? Add that to the other discrepancies revolving around this case and your will come to realize that most people will believe this to be one of the frivolous law suits.

It kills me that you and Jeff are stuck in such minutia. Look at the bigger picture. Val and Joe will be shredded on the stand. Here is how I would program it:

[BEGIN PROGRAM]
[STEP 0001:]
ATT: Mr. Wilson, did you ever tell anybody about your wife's position or status at the CIA before any of this came to light in the news?

Lyin' Joe: No

[STEP 0002: LOOP(x=1 to 5)]
ATT: So you are telling us that you never said anything about her to anyone, is that correct?

Lyin' Joe: That is correct

ATT: Mr. Wilson, do you know a person named [LOOKUP/INSERT witness(x)]?

Lyin' Joe: Maybe

ATT: And isn't it true that on or about [LOOKUP/INSERT date(x)] you told [LOOKUP/INSERT witness(x)] about your wife's employment at CIA when you were with the witness at [LOOKUP/INSERT location(x)].

Lyin' Joe: I never told them that.

ATT: So what your are telling us, and what you want this jury to believe, is that you never told [LOOKUP/INSERT witness(x)]? What if [LOOKUP/INSERT witness(x)] gets on the stand and testifies to that fact?

Lyin' Joe: Then they would be lying and probably told to do so by the evil Karl Rove.

[CONTINUE LOOP]

[STEP 0003:]
ATT: Mr. Wilson, do you know the terms perjury and obstruction of justice?

[END]

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Wilson/Plame