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March 17, 2007

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clarice feldman

Yes, Rick, that's true. I am very critical of the agency but the small groups who included Spann and who worked in his shop were brave and honorable and we will never hear of their work and their successes. I always feel bad that I neglect to credit them.

Charlie (Colorado)

I wrote about this in greater detail in a previous thread, but I can say with absolute confidence, having been out under non-official cover myself, that there is No. Fucking. Way. VP could not know if she was "covert".

The notion is completely nuts, suitable only for ignorant fools.

PeterUK

No P,Luk,you send your best operative,at least head of department.You flag the OVP with your specific areas of inquiry,ask has he got any additions or amendments as to the specifics of the investigation.You amass your evidence then present it ,all on the record and get the OVP to sign off on it,irrespective of any agreement or disagreement.Thus you have the departments position clear.
You don't send a blabbermouth with no technical knowledge who is hardly credible figure.

Now do the quiz.

Semanticleo

The interesting thing about Toensing is the likelihood that they consulted with her on her
'opinion' of Plames covertness. I would love to hear her called back to ask her that question.

Rick Ballard

Plame's "value" to the CIA was demonstrated by what they did to protect her not by what Hayden (who wouldn't know her from Eve) babbles for Waxies benefit.

The CIA did absolutely nothing to protect her because she had absolutely no value to the agency. By deciding to go into politics she became a liability - and the CIA disposed of her.

clarice feldman

Well it works on ignorant fools, Charlie:People like semantic who thin criminal statutes are play dough to be stretched beyond their meaning, P Luk who thinks a statutory definition is not part of the statute, and obsessed who in the early hours of this morning suggested that those who insist the criminal laws be enforced in a constiutional ways are crooked rats.

They buy Goebbelian tactics and practice them and adopt Stalinist legal practices. I only rgeret they don't move to places where such things are ordinary so they can report back to us how much they prefer that.

roanoke

p.lukasiak et al

Please what's your meme again about how Val the Brilliant was the only thing standing between the US of A and whatever you think the great threat is?

Gee we lost that "expertise"...

This gal is the only one with the power to stop whatever when that fits your story for credibility purposes and then she is a lamb without responsibility when it comes to her husband wandering into CIA.

I'd like to know who the hall monitor is over there-obviously he's the go to guy.

When the hall monitor speaks everyone jumps even the great liberal hero Val.

Mr. Hall Monitor dragged her with him to her "boss" for an impromptu meeting. They made her write the memorandum-poor thing!

On top of that they made her talk Joe into it later that same night!

The duress our gal Val must have been under!

Looking_for_a_way_out

Vermer,

Hayden is a Bush appointee. He was not DCI in 2003. To what benefit is it for him to paint the administration in such a negative light while protecting the CIA? He personally was not culpable for what happened. Couldn't he have provided the committee softer language, or refused to approve those comments Waxman used, knowing how potentially inflamatory they were?

Lew Clark

I remember back to when this all started. My first reaction was "Did someone in the White House, either intentionally or accidentally, blow the cover of an undercover CIA Agent"? This was big to me, having been in the bidness, and knowing that Ames, Agee, etc. had gotten a lot of people killed doing that. I called some "old friends" who knew the truth, and all said (without actually saying), "Nope she isn't, hasn't been for years".
The further confirmation of her lack of status, was her assignment to Langley. You can be sure that a dozen or more foreign intelligence agencies have pictures of every person that goes in and out of the gates at Langley along with license plate numbers. This is done because CIA once had (I understand not anymore) a bad habit of calling in covert agents for a "sit-down" with the bosses. That was blowing their cover, and it stopped.
Scary Larry and some others have said "there are a lot of "covert agents" working at Langley. That isn't exactly true. There are a lot of ex covert agents that have taken other, less dangerous, assignments at Langley. But, they no longer do covert work. Some of these people have been "reinvented" and sent back to the field. But that "reinvention" is complete. New name, occupation, history, and physical appearance.
I have always assumed that is why official CIA has been so reluctant to officially state that Plame was not covert. She still had her NOC designator. Through administrative error, or more likely, a "we may be able to "reinvent" her and use her again someday.
But it is obvious that 1. CIA was not in the process of "reinventing" her to be sent back to covert work. 2. In fact she was in the process of transitioning to DOS in a non-covert position. 3. Not only was CIA taking no affirmative action to protect her identity, but Mr. and Mrs. Wilson were, themselves, doing just the opposite, long before the Novak article.
I think that is one of the reasons Toensing is so agitated by all this. A law that was written to protect the lives of really truly covert agents is being used, tangentially, as a political hammer by the Dems/MSM. Entities who do not, and never have, given a twit about the safety of our agents.

Barney Frank

--In other words, blame the German government -- and the US administration officials that authorized the kidnapping of people on German soil.--

The LA Times, while concealing their names, provided details on their personal lives and places of residence that make it possible for terrorists and their sympathisers to locate, identify and possibly kill or kidnap them or their families.
I hope their co workers are continuing their good work.


PeterUK

"The interesting thing about Toensing is the likelihood that they consulted with her on her
'opinion' of Plames covertness. I would love to hear her called back to ask her that question."

Septic,Victoria Toensing wrote the book,they asked her along to explain the book.
No doubt you fuckwits will be exhuming the First Founders to question them.

verner

Roanoke:The duress our gal Val must have been under!

yeah--the unnamed "hall monitor" Which begs the question--how did he know about Joe, and his "special relationship" with Val? Did he "suggest" joe because he knew that he was the ONLY person who would reliably Cover their Asses?

And why didn't Val say--"you know, I just don't think Joe's the right guy--you know, he was a close friend of Al Gore's, he was a Clinton apointee,he is a critic of going to war with Iraq, AND HE'S MARRIED TO ME. No, this is too sensitive--and it comes from the OVP. This has got to be someone completely without the appearance of conflict of interest, with great credentials and complete objectivity. Got someone else in mind?"

Did that happen? HELL NO. She just trotted into her superior's office, and said--"Why don't we send Joe!!!!" And then sent him without a confidentiality agreement. Sorry, it's just all too convenient.

PeterUK

"Couldn't he have provided the committee softer language, or refused to approve those comments Waxman used, knowing how potentially inflamatory they were?"

Perhaps Hayden did,we have only Waxman's version,call the special prosecutor.

p.lukasiak

You know, all of that might make sense if you didn't have George Tenant, the DCI, telling the president it was a "Slam Dunk" case, and the president specificly telling George that what he had simply wasn't enough. It was George Tenant who was pushing the WMD case to the administration, not the administration that was pushing the DCI.

1) Tenet has never confirmed that he said "slam-dunk" -- and Woodward has acknowledged that Bush was he source for this (self-serving) story.

2) The alleged "slam dunk" reference was to WMDs in general, not specific to nuclear weapons, and certainly not specific to the Niger/uranium claim

3) The alledged "slam dunk" statement was made on December 21st, 2002 -- a couple of months before the war started, and less than a month after inspections began again in Iraq. Blix had issued a preliminary draft report on December 19th, and pretty much said "We looked at a bunch of the places you told us to look, and there was nothing to find." Whether Tenet would have used "slam dunk" after two and a half additional months of fruitless inspections is doubtful.

4) Tenet wanted to keep his job. Bush wanted to invade Iraq. It seems to me that Tenet told Bush what he wanted to hear.

Charlie (Colorado)

The interesting thing about Toensing is the likelihood that they consulted with her on her
'opinion' of Plames covertness. I would love to hear her called back to ask her that question.

You want to clear up those pronouns, Leo?

If you mean the minority members of the committee consulted with Toensing on her interpretation of the law before calling her to testify --- which is the only tihng I can imagine you to be meaning here -- then it would be hard to say "well duh" with sufficient derision.

arcanorum

I only rgeret they don't move to places where such things are ordinary so they can report back to us how much they prefer that.

it would be preferred that they move there and not report back.

Looking_for_a_way_out

Perhaps Hayden did,we have only Waxman's version,call the special prosecutor.

PeterUK,

I think someone else here has already made the point that if Waxman stated something incorrectly, Hayden's "Silence is Deafening." If Hayden comes out and says otherwise, fine call Waxman a liar. But calling him a liar because he says something you don't like is grasping at straws.

glass

Septic believes in "heuristics". Logic and reason do not get in the way.

clarice feldman

Heyden hasn't confirmed what Cumming said Waxman said Heyden told him either and Macsmind doesn't believe he did. In fact, he's checked and there is no phone log at the agency of any call from Waxman, and he thinks any pronouncment re Cal's covertiness would have been in writing and introduced into the record.

roanoke

verner-

And then sent him without a confidentiality agreement. Sorry, it's just all too convenient.

Ah ya that part's bugging the hell out of me.

I would think the CIA is familiar with the phrases "out of an abundance of caution" and "standard operational procedure" but somehow those two "values" go flying out the window and who's in the position to make that happen?

Valerie.

Dana Carvey's Church Lady refrain does fit nicely over and over again.

clarice feldman

***Val's*******

p.lukasiak

The LA Times, while concealing their names, provided details on their personal lives and places of residence that make it possible for terrorists and their sympathisers to locate, identify and possibly kill or kidnap them or their families.

none of which was even close to a violation of the IIPA -- or even the espionage act. The LA Times used non-classified sources of information to identify three Americans who had been charged with kidnapping by German authorities. Their cover was "blown" when the indictments were handed down.

That being said, some of the detailed "identifying information" published by the Times seemed to be inappropriate -- and given their self-righteous claim that they weren't publishing their real names, the information was entirely gratuitous.

Charlie (Colorado)

I think someone else here has already made the point that if Waxman stated something incorrectly, Hayden's "Silence is Deafening."

grasping, er, looking , I'm fairly well famous for my lack of diplomatic talents, but even I know that one does not, in Washington, rush to call a senior member of congress a liar in public.

PeterUK

2) The alleged "slam dunk" reference was to WMDs in general, not specific to nuclear weapons, and certainly not specific to the Niger/uranium claim

Usual lie,the claim was alway AFRICA/URANIUM.And lo,there has recently been an Uranium smuggling ring in the Democratic Republic of Congo broken up.If you check your CIA fact Book,no not the one Larry contributed to,you'll find,surprise surprise the DRC is in AFRICA.Fascinating eh?

Lew Clark

Here is how I see the conversation between Val and the "phantom" that just whisked by her door.
Phantom: Damn Val, those political idiots are beating the drum about Saddam and nukes again.
Val: Yeah, idiots. Why don't they just leave it to us pros. We got the lid on Saddam.
Phantom: Hey, didn't we send your husband back in 99 to "find nothing" on the Kahn thing?
Val: Sure did!
Phantom: Think he'd be up to another trip.
Val: Sure, he's always up for the government to foot some of the bills for his business travels. And we both know, he's really good at finding nothing when he sets his mind to it.

verner

Hayden is a Bush apointee--but he's still the DCIA, and has to deal with his "employees." I wouldn't take the few sentences of bureaucraticese he issued through Waxman to mean much at all. I would pay more attention to what he didn't say--ie, she was covered under the IIPA etc.

It's not about Plame, it's about protecting his turf. But I would imagine, his real opinion about her, and her actions, isn't all that great. How could it be, after the out and out lies that she and Wilson have spread, and the embarrrasment it has caused the agency.

You have absolutely no idea what the CIA's real reaction has been to Plame. But I would read Rick Ballard's post above. If she was a NOC, they most certainly did not treat her like one, and (as Harlow's conversation to Novak proves) showed no "affirmative measures" to protect her. She was obviously an extreme liability and a rogue that had pulled the agency into the "partisan political process" through her stupid husband.

And you still haven't answered my questions about "Kristoff and Hubris."

arcanorum

Not only was CIA taking no affirmative action to protect her identity, but Mr. and Mrs. Wilson were, themselves, doing just the opposite, long before the Novak article.

These shrieking blowhards are truly sad and pathetic. They may have lost every shred of dignity, but at least they've still got each other!

a punishment fit for prometheus.

Patrick R. Sullivan

Anybody (other than the loons) think Valerie is being entirely truthful here:

---------quote---------
REP. DAVIS: Let me just ask, try to put some -- some of the press speculation to rest and give you an opportunity to answer. In January 2004, Vanity Fair published an article -- not always known for great accuracy -- touching on your role in the Niger uranium affair. It said -- this was what they said -- "In early May, Wilson and Plame attended a conference sponsored by the Senate Democratic Policy Committee at which Wilson spoke about Iraq. One of the other panelists was New York Times journalist Nicholas Kristof. Over breakfast the next morning with Kristof and his wife, Wilson told about his trip to Niger and said Kristof could write about it but not name him." Is that account accurate?

MS. PLAME WILSON: I think it is. I had nothing -- I was not speaking to Mr. Kristof. And I think my husband did say that he had undertaken this trip, but not to be named as a source.

REP. DAVIS: Okay.

Just to be clear, when your -- the article says that -- says your husband "met for breakfast with Kristof and his wife." Just to be clear, were you at the breakfast?

MS. PLAME WILSON: Briefly, yes, Congressman.

REP. DAVIS: Okay.

On June 13th, Kristof wrote a column about the Niger uranium matter. He wrote that he was piecing the story together from two people directly involved and three others who were briefed on it. Do you know if you were one of those people he was referring to?

MS. PLAME WILSON: I can't imagine that I would be. I did not speak to him about it.

REP. DAVIS: Okay.

What about your husband? Would he have been one of the sources, probably?

MS. PLAME WILSON: I think he was speaking to Mr. Kristof at that point.

REP. DAVIS: Okay.

Was any of that information classified, to your knowledge?

MS. PLAME WILSON: Not that I'm aware of.
-----------endquote------------

His report to the CIA debriefers wasn't classified?

ghostcat

Here's an turd for somebody's punch bowl: Val's glamour and affirmative action advantage notwithstanding, her career arc at the CIA was mediocre.

Charlie (Colorado)

Septic believes in "heuristics". Logic and reason do not get in the way.

Here now, don't go sullying the perfectly fine and respectable study of heuristics.

SunnyDay

Totally off topic:

via Drudge

Lawyer: News Outlet Has Escort List

Mar 16 06:54 PM US/Eastern
Associated Press Writer
Associated Press Writer


WASHINGTON (AP) - A federal judge ruled Friday that a former escort service owner cannot sell phone records and other documents that could be used to publicly identify thousands of her clients.

Deborah Jeane Palfrey, 50, has said she planned to sell the list of up to 15,000 client phone numbers and other records to a news organization to help raise money for her defense. The alleged "D.C. Madam" ran Pamela Martin and Associates, an upscale escort service in the Washington area, for 13 years before it closed in August.

Palfrey's civil attorney, Montgomery Blair Sibley, said Friday he does not believe the judge's order bars him from distributing copies of the phone records for free.

In any event, Sibley said it's a moot point because he has already given copies of the records to an undisclosed news organization. Sibley said the original records are preserved and nothing he has done will prevent prosecutors from inspecting all the materials.

Federal prosecutors allege that Palfrey ran a prostitution ring that yielded $2 million in assets, including cash and homes. In October, the federal government froze the assets after a 2 1/2-year investigation by the Internal Revenue Service. Palfrey is suing to have the assets returned.

U.S. District Judge Gladys Kessler issued a restraining order against Palfrey on Friday and ordered her not to sell any company records or assets. She set a hearing on the issue for Monday.

Sibley has said there were a dozen serious bidders for the 40 pounds of phone records. The bidders ranged from "checkbook journalists to the gold standard of American journalism," Sibley said. Attorneys for people who fear their names will become public have also been after the records, he said.

PeterUK

Way out.
"If Hayden comes out and says otherwise, fine call Waxman a liar. But calling him a liar because he says something you don't like is grasping at straws."
1) I didn't call Waxy a liar.
2) Amazing how you believe everything you are told,this was a political hearing,politicians tend to be economical with the truth.
3) It is extremely hard for public employees to refute what politicians say,in fact unsafe, if what you have been saying about Plame is true.

Other Tom

Lukasiak, your observation that the law will not be interpreted so as to provide an absurd result contributes nothing to the discussion, any more than your childish comments about my memory. And your references to "residence" and "service" do not help you at all.

The residence requirement applies only to US citizens, but includes US citizens who are not officers or employees of an intelligence agency. It is designed to protect, among others, US citizens living abroad who provide intelligence information.

The service requirement applies to both citizens and non-citizens, but only those who are active or retired officers or employees of an agency. Residence alone does not satisfy the requirement; a covert agent who retires to Italy ceases to be covert five years following retirement. The requirement, per the plain terms of the statute, is for service, which remains undefined--and unilluminated by your discussion of the quite distinct residence provision.

Nor are you helped by your emphasis on the intent of the law. The law was, indeed, intended to protect intelligence officials, but at the same time, as amply demonstrated by the legislative history, it was intended to afford substantial protection of civil liberties and free speech. To single out the former intent as requiring a broad scope of coverage, while ignoring the latter concerns of the legislature, is highy unpersuasive.

I've got the drafter of the statute and Fitzgerald on my side. When a judge rules your way, let us know.

arcanorum

In any event, Sibley said it's a moot point because he has already given copies of the records to an undisclosed news organization.

perhaps we'll find out who's been a naughty poppet.

Charlie (Colorado)

His report to the CIA debriefers wasn't classified?

Isn't that interesting? Even though the INR memo and such appear to have been classified SECRET.

sferris

Toensing is nothing but a partisan Republican hack. Waxman was spot on yesterday when he asked her if she had first-hand knowledge about Plame's status and she all but refused to answer this simple question. The fact she won't answer with a yes/no speaks volumes about her reliability.

sferris

Toensing is nothing but a partisan Republican hack. Waxman was spot on yesterday when he asked her if she had first-hand knowledge about Plame's status and she all but refused to answer this simple question. The fact she won't answer with a yes/no speaks volumes about her reliability.

Charlie (Colorado)

Another excellent demonstration that repetition is not the soul of humor.

Barney Frank

--none of which was even close to a violation of the IIPA -- or even the espionage act.--

UMMMM, who said it was?
Sue asked why no one cares that 3 of our covert agents were outed, in part by the LA Times.
Your tepid declaration of the 'inappropriateness' of disclosing personal details that might help them be identified is admirable. Your assumption that they are guilty of what they are charged with is not.
However I do await the time when your outrage over the Time's 'inappropriateness' matches your outrage over Plame.

lurker

Toensing is absolutely unbiased about this whole thing. She has written several articles confirming that Plame is covert.

Is there a full Toensing testimony in addition to MacRangers?

I don't remember this part in Mac Ranger's link.

Rick Ballard

Charlie,

C'mon, Glass was sending Tic on a Google chase. Good one too, considering the probability that Tic is still mumbling the first paragraph to herself and wondering why everything is so hard...

Think of "snipe hunt". Tic's out in the bushes with a bag in her hands.

roanoke

Sue-

Holy cripes I finally remember what you are talking about.

You shouldn't be surprised by p. lukasiak's lack of concern.

They were flyers probably ex-military types so damn it they had it coming.

That kind of hypocrisy from the Left shouldn't surprise most anymore.

Hell they have always hated the military and had machinations against the CIA until just lately.

Be blonde, blue eyed,and have that deer in the headlights ready to cry on cue look and you too could be the Liberal's leading lady in their favorite role-the hapless victim. Better yet donate to Al Gore, attack Bush on anything and you are the Left's Noveau Hero-ette.

lurker

Then Hayden said:

Ms. Wilson's work in many situations had consequences for the security of her colleagues,
and maintaining her cover was critical to protecting the safety of both colleagues and others.

Just Darn!

Not true in year 2003. The job that she was performing had no consequences for the security for her colleagues.

Sorry, no just darn!

p.lukasiak

And why didn't Val say--"you know, I just don't think Joe's the right guy--you know, he was a close friend of Al Gore's,

really? since when? and maybe being a friend of Al Gore is a disqualifying factor in Wingnut World, but its not among serious people.

he was a Clinton apointee,

and an appointee of Bush's father as well....

he is a critic of going to war with Iraq,

actually, not true at that point.... in fact, such a statement is pure idiocy, considering that we are talking early FEBRUARY 2002 -- well before there was any official talk about a war with Iraq-- the "axis of evil" speech wasn't even given until Jan. 29th 2002 -- so how could Joe Wilson be an opponent of War with Iraq if no one was even talking about it?

AND HE'S MARRIED TO ME.

which of course is irrelevant to the question of whether Joe Wilson was a qualified and appropriate choice for the trip...

No, this is too sensitive--and it comes from the OVP. This has got to be someone completely without the appearance of conflict of interest, with great credentials and complete objectivity.

sounds like Joe Wilson in February 2002 was the perfect candidate.

Like most wingnuts, you confuse what happened after Valerie Wilson was outed, and Joe became a prominent Bush administration critic, and who Joe Wilson was before she was outed -- a respected career diplomat who had served honorably and with distinction under both GOP and Democratic presidents.

Tom Maguire

Geez, so delightful of p. luk to grace us with his insight:

Given the INTENT of the IIPA -- protecting the identities of undercover intelligence assets and their sources -- and the nature of intelligence collection, this "had to be stationed or reside overseas" definition of "serve overseas" is patently absurd.

Uhh, *any* cites at all for that? No? Then your foot-stomping and a buck gets me a cup of coffee.

But FYI: Another part of the intent of the act was to preserve free speech rights.

Another part of the intent was to allow criticism of the CIA.

Another part was to protect agents who were being posted and outed overseas, and attacked overseas. Check the history of Agee for that - he wasn't outing NOCS traveling from the US, he was outing agents abroad on official diplomatic cover - the locals could spot them easily.

Another part was to preserve the good work done by officers overseas after they came home.

See, it was a balancing act - a compromise, if you will. Keep in mind, this act was passed just seven years after the Church Committee identified the CIA as the root of the world's evils - comprehensive protection of the CIA was not its only priority.

As to how a judge might rule, how would I know? Obviously, with your superior but as yet unreferenced research, you have concluded it is absurd to think Toensing is right. How you would know remains a mystery.

I happen to think a judge would rule her way, but I lack her familiarity with the history, which may be why I lack her confidence.

Well - why Waxman did not offer a strong statement from CIA COunsel remains another mystery - perhaps p.luk can tackle that as well.

Or, resume footstomping. It's terribly impressive to somebody somewhere, I'm sure.

PeterUK

"Toensing is nothing but a partisan Republican hack. Waxman was spot on yesterday when he asked her if she had first-hand knowledge about Plame's status and she all but refused to answer this simple question. The fact she won't answer with a yes/no speaks volumes about her reliability."

Toensing was there as an expert witness concerning the Statute she wrote,not an expert witness on the status of Plame.
All the personal attacks on Toensing by the left are a surefire indication that the swamp is worried.

Looking_for_a_way_out

There is no way out.

Lew Clark,

Why would the CIA intentionally want to find nothing? I think you're starting to figure this out. Its all about the Iraq war. There were people in the CIA that knew the WMD claims re: Iraq, were bogus, so they intentionally selected Wilson, and deliberately did not require a non-disclosure agreement. They did this to provide an avenue of rebuttal to the administration. The pro-bono aspect of the assignment probably was solely to avoid the non-disclosure agreement.

Now these efforts, by yet unnamed CIA personnel, would have gone for naught, if WMD or active WMD programs in Iraq had actually been found following the war. This is the key. No WMD or active WMD programs were uncovered following the war. Wilson's statements to the press, followed by his editorial, scared the beejeesus out of the folks that had cooked up the justification for the war. They realized that there were people in the CIA that could and were challenging their case for war. They were so affected by this development that they were goaded them into taking retributive action. Instead of simply responding to the facts in Wilson's editorial, they went further. His wife's association with the CIA was given to the press. After all, Valerie had to be involved with those in the CIA making the waves. If any other CIA NOCs were part of that group they would understand that crossing the administration was not to be taken lightly.

Does that tie up the loose ends?

p.lukasiak

The law was, indeed, intended to protect intelligence officials, but at the same time, as amply demonstrated by the legislative history, it was intended to afford substantial protection of civil liberties and free speech.

please provide a link to the legislative history that shows this.

As TOM has already noted, there is no relevant "legislative history" that confirms Toensing's interpretation.

lurker
Vermer,

That looks like it took some time. Then Hayden said:

"Ms. Wilson has provided great service to our nation and has fulfilled her obligation to protect
classified information admirably."

Darn.

Ha! She allowed Joe Wilson to blabbermouth her identity.

No darn!

sylvia

"Then your foot-stomping and a buck gets me a cup of coffee."

Wow. Where did THAT come from?

sbw

Perhaps Carol Herman, if she is around, bless her considerate heart for doing what she did, could teach p.luk the courtesy of how to write his name at the beginning of his comments.

sylvia

"Waxman says that he is going to hold the record open, and check Toensing's statements on the record. Waxman says he will be checking with Fitzgerald on his interpretation of the law."

You know I don't interpret that as bad news for Toensing, I interpret that more as bad news for Fitz. After all, the woman wrote the statute, so he is more likely to be wrong than she. And they weren't under a real oath were they anyway? I thought I read it was more like a pledge to tell the truth, rather than a real perjury-getter type oath.

Rick Ballard

SBW,

I liked your editorials even more on the second read. Thanks for posting them (and thanks to Tom for putting them at the top of a post).

Looking_for_a_way_out

"3) It is extremely hard for public employees to refute what politicians say,in fact unsafe, if what you have been saying about Plame is true."

Hayden's more worried about Waxman than Bush, Rove or Cheney??

Charlie (Colorado)

Wow. Where did THAT come from?

I agree: where can you get a good cup of coffee for a buck?

PeterUK

"There were people in the CIA that knew the WMD claims re: Iraq, were bogus, so they intentionally selected Wilson, and deliberately did not require a non-disclosure agreement. They did this to provide an avenue of rebuttal to the administration."

So the whole thing was a plot,the CIA must have known Valerie Plame would get outed,did she volunteer to take one for the team?
How much of the subsequent farrago of trials and hearings were engineered into the operation.
"By God we can't bring down Castro,but we can bring down Bush"
How long have the CIA been on the other side?

p.lukasiak

Sue asked why no one cares that 3 of our covert agents were outed, in part by the LA Times.
Your tepid declaration of the 'inappropriateness' of disclosing personal details that might help them be identified is admirable. Your assumption that they are guilty of what they are charged with is not.
However I do await the time when your outrage over the Time's 'inappropriateness' matches your outrage over Plame.

The question is where should the outrage be placed? The reason they were "outed" was their alleged involvement in the kidnapping of someone in Germany. Given that the evidence is pretty convincing that they were involved in the kidnapping, I think that most of the outrage should be directed at those who ordered the kidnapping.

Lets, for a moment, examine a hypothetical case of kidnapping that did not involved CIA agents, but did allegedly involve Americans using fake passports and assumed names. Would the LA Times be justified in investigating the identies of these alleged kidnappers, and publishing their names?

Lots of alleged criminals operate under aliases -- and the media has no problem disclosing the real names of the alleged criminals.

So don't ask me to get too worked up about what the LA Times did.... personally, I think they would have been justified in treating this like any other criminal conspiracy case, and published the real names of the alleged criminals in the kidnapping plot, rather than being coy about "not publishing their real names" while making it a lot easier to discover those names.

Spartacvs

Valerie Wilson testified under oath that she was a CIA officer who operated undercover, the statement read by Waxman as authorized by the CIA Director Hayden would seem to corroborate her claim. Can anyone point me toward anything Toestink testified to that might gainsay the conclusion that at the time of Novak's article outing her, Plame was indeed a CIA officer who operated undercover?

Please note that for the purposes of this discussion I did not use the word 'covert' and the definition of 'covert' under the IIPA is irrelevant since no one would seem to be facing the prospect of prosecution under its provisions.

That is all.


roanoke

p.lukasiak-

So you believe in trial by media-good to know.

PeterUK

"Hayden's more worried about Waxman than Bush, Rove or Cheney??"

You have just seen Waxman's threat to Toensing,Fitzgeralds determination to get satisfaction.Endless hearings trials,It's the Democratic way of government, may as well pack the job in.
What government job does Rove hold?

Looking_for_a_way_out

"Ha! She allowed Joe Wilson to blabbermouth her identity.

No darn!"

Lurker,

Then Hayden said:

"Ms. Wilson has provided great service to our nation and has fulfilled her obligation to protect
classified information admirably."

duh darn. Argue with Hayden not with me. As we learned yesterday, there are procedures to follow when classified information has been disclosed. It sounds like Plame must have very scrupulously followed those to earn such a commendation from the DCI.

Spartacvs

So you believe in trial by media-good to know.

There would appear to be no legal liability for those who were not caught in a lie during Fitzgerald's investigation. The remaining liabilities of those involved in the outing of Plame are entirely political. And yes, political liabilities are often exposed in the press. That is part of what makes America great.

Jeff

Jeff, you and I seem to be more "shades of gray" types - I am forming the impression that neither Ms. Toensing nor Mr. Fitzgerald share that temperment.

Consider the compliment returned.

Two comments. All I need to defeat Toensing's argument here is that she is just wrong that her argument is the only reasonable way to construe the statute, that it is impossible for Fitzgerald in good faith to have construed it otherwise; and that therefore a violation of IIPA was not transparently impossible, as she suggested.

Now, beyond that, Fitzgerald's job is to construe the statute, he's got to take a position on it, and what's more, he is a conventional federal prosecutor - very aggressive. If you've got a complaint with that, it seems to me it goes to the conventions and norms governing the conduct of federal prosecutors, not Fitzgerald in particular.

But the basic point is, he and some of his team analyzed the statutes, and they came up with a different interpretation from Toensing's. Everyone can be acting in good faith here. But then Toensing is still wrong - not necessarily on her interpretation of the statute, but on her claim that Fitzgerald must have known when he took over that there was no possible violation of the IIPA.

boris

Whatever definition of "covert" one uses it was Grenier, Schmall and Harlow (all CIA) who blabbed about "Wilson's CIA wife who sent him to Niger". If she was "covert" and had nothing to do with the mission then just who pulled the big FUBAR?

CIA.

If it is the CIA that gets do define what "covertness" has Plame, then let them take the blame for the disclosure they allowed.

sylvia

" I did not use the word 'covert' and the definition of 'covert' under the IIPA is irrelevant since no one would seem to be facing the prospect of prosecution under its provisions."

Not entirely. The IIPA charge was listed in the Libby indictment as a reason for the investigation and for the supposed justice that was obstructed. If any investigaters had any knowledge at any time before the false statements were committed that Plame did not fit the definition of covert, hence the law could not have been broken, then that investigation was undertaken under false pretenses, and all crimes that resulted from those fraudulent investigations would have to be dropped.

That's why this is important.

p.lukasiak

So you believe in trial by media-good to know.

no, I just don't think that there should be a double standard about "trial by media." The media would have no problem disclosing the real name of any other person who was accused of committing a serious crime under an assumed name.

roanoke

Spart-

You know how to tell you are a liberal?

Ask yourself-are you consistent?

Do you believe everything in the media? [They are infallable, and not subject to human err-like rushing to print to get the story first.]

Do you use a lot of words to convey not much..?

Finally do you believe foreign courts are where the guilt of the military and CIA working overseas should be determined?

Oh hell I lied one more finally-do you believe that the Hague and UN pre-empt everything?

Answer yes to most of those and you just might be a world order type.

PeterUK

"It sounds like Plame must have very scrupulously followed those to earn such a commendation from the DCI."

Nah,that was "Thanks for your service,here's your retirement clock",standard boiler plate.
By all accounts Hayden was a good commander,good commanders don't slag off the troops in public,bad for morale.

boris

she is just wrong that her argument is the only reasonable way to construe the statute

Just as IIPA defines a legally actionable version of "covert" it may also be using specific definitions of words like "serve" as opposed to "visit". If so then her argument is the only reasonable way to construe the statute on that point.

You may interpret the statute based on common usage of the word but in a legal sense that would not be "reasonable".

Ranger

4) Tenet wanted to keep his job. Bush wanted to invade Iraq. It seems to me that Tenet told Bush what he wanted to hear.


Posted by: p.lukasiak | March 17, 2007 at 10:39 AM


Well, if Tenant was just telling Bush what he wanted to hear, why was Bush questioning him on it? Remember, the run up to that is that Tenant gives the president and a few close advisors a briefing on the WMD evidnece in the run up to the State of the Union address. After the roughly one hour presentation Bush askes 'Where is all this solid evidence you've been telling me about for the last few months. This isn't close to what you've been saying you have.'

If it was really the way you say it was, then president Bush would have just patted George on the back and said 'nice job, not lets go get the SOB.' George Tenant was a true believer that Saddam had WMDs. If there was anyone presuring the analysist to come up with stuff it was him. Nice of you to just hand wave all of that away to make the world fit your preconcieved notions.

roanoke

oh shat I rushed to print-

You have to answer no to the "are you consistent question."

Looking_for_a_way_out

"By God we can't bring down Castro,but we can bring down Bush"

How long have the CIA been on the other side?

Don't know, but why else send Wilson to find nothing? You can argue pure incompetence, but step back and look at the big picture. No WMD, no non-disclosure, completely out of proportion political reaction. This weren't no small concern to the administration.

roanoke

p.lukasiak-

Well your posiitve they committed a crime, and that fact was found where?

That jurisdiction prevails in your mind for what reason?

p.lukasiak

The IIPA charge was listed in the Libby indictment as a reason for the investigation and for the supposed justice that was obstructed. If any investigaters had any knowledge at any time before the false statements were committed that Plame did not fit the definition of covert, hence the law could not have been broken, then that investigation was undertaken under false pretenses, and all crimes that resulted from those fraudulent investigations would have to be dropped.

Wow. You must have gotten your law degree from the same place as Clarice.

Regardless of whether an IIPA charge could have stood up in court, Libby's lies to the FBI were material to the investigation -- and as long as false statement are material, criminal procedings are justified under the law.

The jury found that Libby lied AND obstructed justice in doing so -- in other words, the Libby jury found that Libby's lies were material to the investigation.

Ranger

Does that tie up the loose ends?

Posted by: Looking_for_a_way_out | March 17, 2007 at 11:16 AM

Well, actually, no it doesn't because it completely glosses over the fact that the person who leaked Vals name was someone who actually opposed the war.

"Yeah, I know F...ing Joe Wilson. He's calling all over town all pissed off that they called him a low level Guy... His wife set up the trip, she works on WMDs at the CIA."

And that person was??? Well, not in the White House and not a supporter of the war in the first place.

roanoke

typo

p. lukasiak

you ^are positive^ they committed a crime

zeppo

Appropos of nothing... A couple of years ago I served as an expert witness (testifying under oath in a totally unrelated case, and not before Congress, and in a different field of law [related to patents], and in a courtroom in London and therefore not even in the United States, so my experience may have nothing whatsoever to say of relevance to this discussion - therefore, feel free to ignore it).

My experience was that when, in my expert opinion (and bolstered by a clearly-supported technical explanation of why I was doing so), I gave an answer to a key question that was not the answer that the opposing side's barrister was clearly hoping I would provide, he first repeated the question in exactly the same way that he had originally posed it. I then repeated my answer in the same way that I had first answered it. The barrister then, in a most pompous and condescending tone of voice, threatened me that if I did not answer the question in the way that he wanted me to, in order to help the case that he was making, that he would tell the judge that I was a liar. The barrister's statement was so childish and idiotic that I was briefly taken aback, but I then replied with exactly the same answer that I gave the first two times that he asked me. The role of the expert witness is to provide expert testimony to help the court, and not to make the case of either party. (Of course, there can always be expert witnesses who do not live up to their obligations, and instead shade their testimony, or even outright falsify their testimony, however I was doing neither).

So, perhaps that tactic of hinting or outright claiming that the expert witness is a liar whenever that witness states a clearly-supported expert opinion that is not helpful to the questioner's argument, is a gambit that is often used by pompous blowhards and bullies such as Waxman when they are not getting their way. But then this (as are many similar Congressional hearings) is tantamount to a "show trial", and so arriving at the actual truth is not the intent or objective of the questioner.

PeterUK

"The media would have no problem disclosing the real name of any other person who was accused of committing a serious crime under an assumed name."

...and of course their addresses.
It also helps if that the alleged charges were not for offences in the US.
What a hypocrite.

Looking_for_a_way_out

"By God we can't bring down Castro, but we can bring down Bush"

They didn't bring Bush down either.

Barney Frank

p. luk,

Your comments would be somewhat less execrable were we not at war.

Had folks like you been around in WWII the fellows responsible for breaking Japanese code and shooting Yamamoto's unarmed plane out of the sky apparently would have been tried and imprisoned.
Perhaps you believe Staufenberg's execution after his attempt to assassinate Hitler was justified also, as it was most definitely against German law.

roanoke

PeterUK-

Add to that fact that p. lukasiak is OK with the American press being the punishing wing of the German justice system.

Rick Ballard

Ranger,

Armitage is a non-person. Commissar Waxman and his cronies made that crystal clear yesterday. He does not exist, he has never existed and bringing him up is an invitation to become the victim of today's Two Minute Hate. (Although I really think that Victoria Toensing will retain her spot for a few more days.)

Orwell would have tagged these clowns in less than a minute.

p.lukasiak

Well your posiitve they committed a crime, and that fact was found where?
That jurisdiction prevails in your mind for what reason?

well, according to news reports of the information found in the German indictment, they were involved in the kidnapping. Kidnapping is a crime.

Now I don't know if they are "guilty" or not, insofar as I don't know if they were aware that their job involved kidnapping someone -- and I think that knowledge is an important element in criminal culpability. (In other words, its possible that they were lead to believe that the kidnap victim was being legally extradicted, but for security reasons it was being done "undercover.")

It is for that reason that I say the outrage over their outing should be directed at those who ordered the kidnapping. By ordering an illegal action, they placed covert individuals at risk of exposure through the German justice system.

PeterUK

Many thanks Zeppo.Barristers are about winning the case,not ascertaining the truth.

sylvia

"Regardless of whether an IIPA charge could have stood up in court, Libby's lies to the FBI were material to the investigation -- and as long as false statement are material, criminal procedings are justified under the law."

If you read my post, I said if they found out BEFORE the false statements. I agree that once the false statements were made to an investigation done in good faith, they can then use those statements for a criminal charge whether or not the base charge pans out.

But notice my "before". Think about it this way, can the FBI just make up any old criminal charge they want to, knowing it is not true, and then go "investigate" it? No. There has to be "probable cause". There can't be a "fraudulent" cause or an "impossible" cause. And if they continue to investigate a crime, all the while knowing it could not have been committed, then that would be fraudulent to me. And then there is the question of due dilligence as well. Did the investigtors do their due dilligence to find out whether indeed Plame was covert before the investigation was started. So these are elements that should be invesigated.

PeterUK

"Now I don't know if they are "guilty" or not, insofar as I don't know if they were aware that their job involved kidnapping someone -- and I think that knowledge is an important element in criminal culpability"

Not sure where you didn't study law P.Luk,but even to a layman,the word is alleged kidnap.
Interesting that you feel that making public the addresses of the accused,in time of war is legitimate.Back to your law training,which madrassa did you study at?

Rick Ballard

If an enemy agent is taken pursuant to a Presidential finding then the US operatives doing the work have the aegis of the United States to protect them.

Just as the pilots who bombed the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade are protected, as well as the officers responsible for launching the attacks on the Sudanese aspirin factory.

If you don't like it - move to the PRC. They'll welcome you with open arms (and put a bullet in your head - billable to your family - if you open your mouth).

Copperheads are admirable in nature and loathesome in human form.

Look at Waxman and see if you don't agree.

Barney Frank

--By ordering an illegal action, they placed covert individuals at risk of exposure through the German justice system.--

Why do you think people are covert dumbass?
They are nearly always being asked to do something that is illegal in the country they are in.
Your hearty endorsement of their indictment, while 'kidnapping' terrorists speaks volumes about your loyalties doesn't it?

boris

Loud and clear.

p.lukasiak

Armitage is a non-person. Commissar Waxman and his cronies made that crystal clear yesterday. He does not exist, he has never existed and bringing him up is an invitation to become the victim of today's Two Minute Hate. (Although I really think that Victoria Toensing will retain her spot for a few more days.)

Armitage was irrelevant to the purpose of the hearings, which was to examine how the White House handled classified information -- and how it responded to the disclosure of classified information by White House personnel.

The most salient part of the hearing was the revelation that White House personnel were required, under the agreement they signed giving them access to classified materials, to self-report their personal involvement in the leaking of classified information even if their own involvement was peripheral or unintentional. According to Knodell (sp?), no one in the White House did self-report---even though Rove and Libby (and Fleischer) were all involved in outing Plame.

Now, Fleischer left the White House right after Plame was outed, but why did Rove (who confirmed it to Novak, and disclosed it to Cooper) and Libby (who confirmed it to Cooper, and told Judy Miller) not report their own actions?

(We don't know if Armitage did or not -- he would have self-reported to someone in the State Department. And since there is a separate House committee that is dedicated to examining what happens in the State Department, there is no need for Waxman's committee to ask questions about Armitage. )

sbw

Re: editorials.

Thanks, Rick.

sbw

Waxman and p.luk believe the need to win is more important than working to understand what happened.

verner

"So don't ask me to get too worked up about what the LA Times did.... personally, I think they would have been justified in treating this like any other criminal conspiracy case, and published the real names of the alleged criminals in the kidnapping plot, rather than being coy about "not publishing their real names" while making it a lot easier to discover those names."

Sorry Honey, you've just won the Rosie O'Donnell award....

Not only are your comments totally inane, but you obviously have a screw loose. No wonder you like the Wilsons.

Other Tom

"...please provide a link to the legislative history that shows this."

Given that the burden here is clearly upon you, I decline to do any such thing. I am content to leave undisturbed the status quo which. briefly summarized is, "we win, you lose."

Looking_for_a_way_out

"Well, actually, no it doesn't because it completely glosses over the fact that the person who leaked Vals name was someone who actually opposed the war."

I know I'm dense on this. Didn't the Libby trial establish that there were at least two independent leakers of Val's name/employer? Armitage leaked to Novak and Woodward, and Libby leaked to Miller and Ari. Did Libby know about Armitage before he told Miller? Would Novak have published if Rove had asked him to hold it?

verner

"The jury found that Libby lied AND obstructed justice in doing so -- in other words, the Libby jury found that Libby's lies were material to the investigation."

A jury of nine democrats and two DC independants--including a guy who posted a 7,900 word essay at HUFFINGTON POST within 12 hours of the verdict--

Take your pick--Mississippi Justice circa 1960, or Stalinist Show Trial circa 1936.

Either fits.

Barney Frank

p.luk,

Please provide the item of classified information that Rove, Libby or Fleischer disclosed to anyone. Please also provide a citation that said information is classified.

Jeff

the law provides definitions of who is covered... and defines ONE group of American citizens as "serving" overseas in the last five years while ANOTHER group of American citizens must "reside" overseas at the time of the disclosure -- and also cover any NON-CITIZEN who ever provided assistance to our intelligence agencies and whose actions/status remains classified. Thus, Toensing's "resides in the last five years" requirement makes no sense within the specific language of the law -- "resides" is specified for only one group of covered individuals.

That is a very nice catch. Though I'm not sure it will do as much work as you want it to, it does explain the bizarre discussion of "agent" in Toensing's opening statement, where she tries to blame the media for being confusing about what an agent is while pointing to some of the weirdness of the use of the term in the law. I think she needs to evade the point you're making and just say that the law makes a mess of its use of the term "agent" - while sorta blaming the right's devilish liberal MSM.

Your point does raise the question, given that one category of covert agent is defined as a US citizen who resides and acts outside the US as an agent of an intelligence agency, if the authors of the law intended to say that another category of covert agent - the officer or employee of the intel agency - also had to have resided and acted outside the US within the previous five years, why wouldn't they just say so? Why this other term - serve?

Other Tom

"Now I don't know if they are 'guilty' or not, insofar as I don't know if they were aware that their job involved kidnapping someone..."

I assume Lukasiak mean "inasmuch as," but one can never be certain. Please keep in mind that we deal in English here.

What is important about the ghost pilots, and what is deserving of outrage, is that the CIA officer who came forward and alerted the world to their alleged wrongdoing, and ultimately to information exposing them to violence at the hands of anyone who wishes to do them harm, ignored the law altogether in placing them at very serious risk. The provisions of an existing federal statute would have allowed her to proceed lawfully to have their conduct examined and, if it were deemed unlawful, either discontinued or punished, or both. What Ms. McCarthy did is infinitely more despicable--though probably neither more nor less unlawful--than anything done by Rove, Libby, or even the worm Armitage. The moonbats who condemn the one and defend the other are not to be taken seriously, insofar as moral issues are presented.

MikeS


When or whether the Administration got a report or briefing on Joe Wilson’s mission is inconsequential.

It would not be legitimate or sensible to accept Wilson’s analysis over the NIE. To do so might even constitute some form of criminal bad judgment. The President is not free to choose Wilson over the NIE. He was not free to choose Scott Ritter over the CIA, nor can he legitimately choose to believe Cindy Sheehan over Generals Casey and Petraeus.

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Wilson/Plame