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October 31, 2005

Time Reporter Says He Learned Agent's Identity From Rove.... And "Turdblossom," may soon have some 'splainin' to do as well!

While even rational right wing bloggers continue to beat the dead Wilson horse, trying desperately to make this about Wilson, instead of about members of the sitting administration outting a Covert CIA agent, the story is slowly starting to come out, and I wager that a whole lot of people are going to be eating crow pretty soon, or looking like the partisan hacks that they are...

Ah, memo to the Rightspere... "The only people who are buying the Wilson as bad guy crap anymore, are those drinking from the same Kool Aide cup.

Posted by David A at 08:17 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0) | 115 Words
I think I have just seen Treason defined...
Robert Novak should never be allowed to write another column or appear on any TV show ever-unless he's doing an interview that explains why he is Karl Rove's messenger boy. He is a national disgrace.

Her status as a NOC should have been enough to keep her protected by the people she worked for. When these apologists run around and try to muddy up the waters with debates about whether she was an undercover agent or not is very disappointing. They should all be hauled away in handcuffs and sent to a North Korean prison to spend a few nights in one of their comfy cells. Then we'll see how brave they are. If she had been caught on foreign soil she would have been hung out to dry.

Quote: "We're not being undermined by the North Koreans, we're not being undermined by the Russians--we're being undermined by officials in our own government."

It is mind boggling to think that so many of these apologists still try to question her status.

From Crooks and Liars... They have the video, watch it...

Posted by David A at 01:53 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0) | 182 Words
October 29, 2005

I was waiting to see The Commissar's take on today's indictment.

Though this line is probably one of the least hypocritical I have seen today from the Right:

"Undoubtedly worse than a sex scandal, but about twenty stories shy of a Watergate."

The Moonbat line is somewhat dissapointing from someone whom I have come to respect as at least rational, if partisan.

Has there been some gloating,yeah I would say that is fairly accurate, but today's news was hardly much to celebrate. The indictment makes it pretty clear for any rational person, that the coversations about Plame were politically motivated. No amount of spin from the Right is going to change that. While the Special prosecuter did make an effort to depoliticize the indictment, he also pointed out the seriousness of outting a CIA operative, something all but ignored in most coverage from the Right. So if there is any "Muted Gloating," going on, it would seem to me that it is coming from the Right, who seem to be celebrating the fact that Karl and Dick are not doing the perp walk as well...

And welcome to New York Times readers...

Posted by David A at 12:06 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0) | 192 Words
October 28, 2005
The Libby indictment!

Looks like a deliberate smear campaign to me.... And the clearest evidence is the weakness of the spin coming from the Right.

Holding a Criminal Term
Grand Jury Sworn in on October 31, 2003
) Criminal No.
) Count 1: Obstruction of Justice (18 U.S.C. § 1503)
) Counts 2-3: False Statements (18 U.S.C. § 1001(a)(2))
also known as "SCOOTER LIBBY"
) Counts 4-5: Perjury (18 U.S.C. § 1623)
(Obstruction of Justice)
At times material to this indictment:
Defendant's Employment and Responsibilities
Beginning on or about January 20, 2001, and continuing through the date of
this indictment, defendant I. LEWIS LIBBY, also known as "SCOOTER LIBBY," was employed
as Assistant to the President of the United States, Chief of Staff to the Vice President of the United
States, and Assistant to the Vice President for National Security Affairs. In the course of his work,
LIBBY had frequent access to classified information and frequently spoke with officials of the U.S.
intelligence community, as well as other government officials, regarding sensitive national security
In connection with his role as a senior government official with
responsibilities for national security matters, LIBBY held security clearances entitling him to access
to classified information. As a person with such clearances, LIBBY was obligated by applicable
laws and regulations, including Title 18, United States Code, Section 793, and Executive Order
12958 (as modified by Executive Order 13292), not to disclose classified information to persons not
authorized to receive such information, and otherwise to exercise proper care to safeguard classified
information against unauthorized disclosure. On or about January 23, 2001, LIBBY executed a
written "Classified Information Nondisclosure Agreement," stating in part that "I understand and
accept that by being granted access to classified information, special confidence and trust shall be
placed in me by the United States Government," and that "I have been advised that the unauthorized
disclosure, unauthorized retention, or negligent handling of classified information by me could cause
damage or irreparable injury to the United States or could be used to advantage by a foreign nation."
The Central Intelligence Agency
The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) was an agency of the United States
whose mission was to collect, produce, and disseminate intelligence and counterintelligence
information to officers and departments of the United States government, including the President,
the National Security Council, and the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
The responsibilities of certain CIA employees required that their association
with the CIA be kept secret; as a result, the fact that these individuals were employed by the CIA was
classified. Disclosure of the fact that such individuals were employed by the CIA had the potential
to damage the national security in ways that ranged from preventing the future use of those
individuals in a covert capacity, to compromising intelligence-gathering methods and operations, and
endangering the safety of CIA employees and those who dealt with them.
Joseph Wilson and Valerie Plame Wilson
Joseph Wilson ("Wilson") was a former career State Department official who
had held a variety of posts, including United States Ambassador. In 2002, after an inquiry to the CIA
by the Vice President concerning certain intelligence reporting, the CIA decided on its own initiative
to send Wilson to the country of Niger to investigate allegations involving Iraqi efforts to acquire
uranium yellowcake, a processed form of uranium ore. Wilson orally reported his findings to the
CIA upon his return.
Joseph Wilson was married to Valerie Plame Wilson ("Valerie Wilson"). At
all relevant times from January 1, 2002 through July 2003, Valerie Wilson was employed by the
CIA, and her employment status was classified. Prior to July 14, 2003, Valerie Wilson's affiliation
with the CIA was not common knowledge outside the intelligence community.
Events Leading up to July 2003
On or about January 28, 2003, President George W. Bush delivered his State of the
Union address which included sixteen words asserting that "The British government has learned that
Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa."
On May 6, 2003, the New York Times published a column by Nicholas Kristof which
disputed the accuracy of the "sixteen words" in the State of the Union address. The column reported
that, following a request from the Vice President's office for an investigation of allegations that Iraq
sought to buy uranium from Niger, an unnamed former ambassador was sent on a trip to Niger in
2002 to investigate the allegations. According to the column, the ambassador reported back to the
CIA and State Department in early 2002 that the allegations were unequivocally wrong and based
on forged documents.
On or about May 29, 2003, in the White House, LIBBY asked an Under Secretary
of State ("Under Secretary") for information concerning the unnamed ambassador's travel to Niger
to investigate claims about Iraqi efforts to acquire uranium yellowcake. The Under Secretary
thereafter directed the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research to prepare a report
concerning the ambassador and his trip. The Under Secretary provided LIBBY with interim oral
reports in late May and early June 2003, and advised LIBBY that Wilson was the former ambassador
who took the trip.
On or about June 9, 2003, a number of classified documents from the CIA were faxed
to the Office of the Vice President to the personal attention of LIBBY and another person in the
Office of the Vice President. The faxed documents, which were marked as classified, discussed,
among other things, Wilson and his trip to Niger, but did not mention Wilson by name. After
receiving these documents, LIBBY and one or more other persons in the Office of the Vice President
handwrote the names "Wilson" and "Joe Wilson" on the documents.
On or about June 11 or 12, 2003, the Under Secretary of State orally advised LIBBY
in the White House that, in sum and substance, Wilson's wife worked at the CIA and that State
Department personnel were saying that Wilson's wife was involved in the planning of his trip.
On or about June 11, 2003, LIBBY spoke with a senior officer of the CIA to ask
about the origin and circumstances of Wilson's trip, and was advised by the CIA officer that
Wilson's wife worked at the CIA and was believed to be responsible for sending Wilson on the trip.
Prior to June 12, 2003, Washington Post reporter Walter Pincus contacted the Office
of the Vice President in connection with a story he was writing about Wilson's trip. LIBBY
participated in discussions in the Office of the Vice President concerning how to respond to Pincus.
On or about June 12, 2003, LIBBY was advised by the Vice President of the United
States that Wilson's wife worked at the Central Intelligence Agency in the Counterproliferation
Division. LIBBY understood that the Vice President had learned this information from the CIA.

On June 12, 2003, the Washington Post published an article by reporter Walter Pincus
about Wilson's trip to Niger, which described Wilson as a retired ambassador but not by name, and
reported that the CIA had sent him to Niger after an aide to the Vice President raised questions about
purported Iraqi efforts to acquire uranium. Pincus's article questioned the accuracy of the "sixteen
words," and stated that the retired ambassador had reported to the CIA that the uranium purchase
story was false.
On or about June 14, 2003, LIBBY met with a CIA briefer. During their
conversation he expressed displeasure that CIA officials were making comments to reporters critical
of the Vice President's office, and discussed with the briefer, among other things, "Joe Wilson" and
his wife "Valerie Wilson," in the context of Wilson's trip to Niger.
On or about June 19, 2003, an article appeared in The New Republic magazine online
entitled "The First Casualty: The Selling of the Iraq War." Among other things, the article
questioned the "sixteen words" and stated that following a request for information from the Vice
President, the CIA had asked an unnamed ambassador to travel to Niger to investigate allegations
that Iraq had sought uranium from Niger. The article included a quotation attributed to the unnamed
ambassador alleging that administration officials "knew the Niger story was a flat-out lie." The
article also was critical of how the administration, including the Office of the Vice President,
portrayed intelligence concerning Iraqi capabilities with regard to weapons of mass destruction, and
accused the administration of suppressing dissent from the intelligence agencies on this topic.
Shortly after publication of the article in The New Republic, LIBBY spoke by
telephone with his then Principal Deputy and discussed the article. That official asked LIBBY
whether information about Wilson's trip could be shared with the press to rebut the allegations that
the Vice President had sent Wilson. LIBBY responded that there would be complications at the CIA
in disclosing that information publicly, and that he could not discuss the matter on a non-secure
telephone line.
On or about June 23, 2003, LIBBY met with New York Times reporter Judith Miller.
During this meeting LIBBY was critical of the CIA, and disparaged what he termed "selective
leaking" by the CIA concerning intelligence matters. In discussing the CIA's handling of Wilson's
trip to Niger, LIBBY informed her that Wilson's wife might work at a bureau of the CIA.
The July 6 "Op Ed" Article by Wilson
On July 6, 2003, the New York Times published an Op-Ed article by Wilson entitled
"What I Didn't Find in Africa." Also on July 6, 2003, the Washington Post published an article
about Wilson's 2002 trip to Niger, which article was based in part upon an interview of Wilson.
Also on July 6, Wilson appeared as a guest on the television interview show "Meet the Press." In
his Op-Ed article and interviews in print and on television, Wilson asserted, among other things, that
he had taken a trip to Niger at the request of the CIA in February 2002 to investigate allegations that
Iraq had sought or obtained uranium yellowcake from Niger, and that he doubted Iraq had obtained
uranium from Niger recently, for a number of reasons. Wilson stated that he believed, based on his
understanding of government procedures, that the Office of the Vice President was advised of the
results of his trip.
LIBBY's Actions Following Wilson's July 6 "Op Ed" Column
On or about July 7, 2003, LIBBY had lunch with the then White House Press
Secretary and advised the Press Secretary that Wilson's wife worked at the CIA and noted that such
information was not widely known.
On or about the morning of July 8, 2003, LIBBY met with New York Times reporter
Judith Miller. When the conversation turned to the subject of Joseph Wilson, LIBBY asked that the
information LIBBY provided on the topic of Wilson be attributed to a "former Hill staffer" rather
than to a "senior administration official," as had been the understanding with respect to other
information that LIBBY provided to Miller during this meeting. LIBBY thereafter discussed with
Miller Wilson's trip and criticized the CIA reporting concerning Wilson's trip. During this
discussion, LIBBY advised Miller of his belief that Wilson's wife worked for the CIA.
Also on or about July 8, 2003, LIBBY met with the Counsel to the Vice President
in an anteroom outside the Vice President's Office. During their brief conversation, LIBBY asked
the Counsel to the Vice President, in sum and substance, what paperwork there would be at the CIA
if an employee's spouse undertook an overseas trip.
Not earlier than June 2003, but on or before July 8, 2003, the Assistant to the Vice
President for Public Affairs learned from another government official that Wilson's wife worked at
the CIA, and advised LIBBY of this information.
On or about July 10, 2003, LIBBY spoke to NBC Washington Bureau Chief Tim
Russert to complain about press coverage of LIBBY by an MSNBC reporter. LIBBY did not discuss
Wilson's wife with Russert.
On or about July 10 or July 11, 2003, LIBBY spoke to a senior official in the White
House ("Official A") who advised LIBBY of a conversation Official A had earlier that week with
columnist Robert Novak in which Wilson's wife was discussed as a CIA employee involved in
Wilson's trip. LIBBY was advised by Official A that Novak would be writing a story about
Wilson's wife.
On or about July 12, 2003, LIBBY flew with the Vice President and others to and
from Norfolk, Virginia, on Air Force Two. On his return trip, LIBBY discussed with other officials
aboard the plane what LIBBY should say in response to certain pending media inquiries, including
questions from Time reporter Matthew Cooper.
On or about July 12, 2003, in the afternoon, LIBBY spoke by telephone to Cooper,
who asked whether LIBBY had heard that Wilson's wife was involved in sending Wilson on the trip
to Niger. LIBBY confirmed to Cooper, without elaboration or qualification, that he had heard this
information too.
On or about July 12, 2003, in the late afternoon, LIBBY spoke by telephone with
Judith Miller of the New York Times and discussed Wilson's wife, and that she worked at the CIA.
The Criminal Investigation
On or about September 26, 2003, the Department of Justice authorized the Federal
Bureau of Investigation ("FBI") to commence a criminal investigation into the possible unauthorized
disclosure of classified information regarding the disclosure of Valerie Wilson's affiliation with the
CIA to various reporters in the spring of 2003.
As part of the criminal investigation, LIBBY was interviewed by Special Agents of
the FBI on or about October 14 and November 26, 2003, each time in the presence of his counsel.
During these interviews, LIBBY stated to FBI Special Agents that:
During a conversation with Tim Russert of NBC News on July 10 or 11,
2003, Russert asked LIBBY if LIBBY was aware that Wilson's wife worked
for the CIA. LIBBY responded to Russert that he did not know that, and
Russert replied that all the reporters knew it. LIBBY was surprised by this
statement because, while speaking with Russert, LIBBY did not recall that
he previously had learned about Wilson's wife's employment from the Vice
During a conversation with Matthew Cooper of Time magazine on or about
July 12, 2003, LIBBY told Cooper that reporters were telling the
administration that Wilson's wife worked for the CIA, but that LIBBY did
not know if this was true; and
LIBBY did not discuss Wilson's wife with New York Times reporter Judith
Miller during a meeting with Miller on or about July 8, 2003.
Beginning in or about January 2004, and continuing until the date of this indictment,
Grand Jury 03-3 sitting in the District of Columbia conducted an investigation ("the Grand Jury
Investigation") into possible violations of federal criminal laws, including: Title 50, United States
Code, Section 421 (disclosure of the identity of covert intelligence personnel); and Title 18, United
States Code, Sections 793 (improper disclosure of national defense information), 1001 (false
statements), 1503 (obstruction of justice), and 1623 (perjury).
A major focus of the Grand Jury Investigation was to determine which government
officials had disclosed to the media prior to July 14, 2003 information concerning the affiliation of
Valerie Wilson with the CIA, and the nature, timing, extent, and purpose of such disclosures, as well
as whether any official making such a disclosure did so knowing that the employment of Valerie
Wilson by the CIA was classified information.
During the course of the Grand Jury Investigation, the following matters, among
others, were material to the Grand Jury Investigation:
When, and the manner and means by which, defendant LIBBY learned
that Wilson's wife was employed by the CIA;
Whether and when LIBBY disclosed to members of the media that
Wilson's wife was employed by the CIA;
The language used by LIBBY in disclosing any such information to
the media, including whether LIBBY expressed uncertainty about the accuracy of any information
he may have disclosed, or described where he obtained the information;
LIBBY's knowledge as to whether any information he disclosed was
classified at the time he disclosed it; and
Whether LIBBY was candid with Special Agents of the Federal
Bureau of Investigation in describing his conversations with the other government officials and the
media relating to Valerie Wilson.
LIBBY's Grand Jury Testimony
On or about March 5 and March 24, 2004, LIBBY testified before Grand Jury 03-3.
On each occasion of LIBBY's testimony, the foreperson of the Grand Jury administered the oath to
LIBBY and LIBBY swore to tell the truth in the testimony he was about to give.
In or about March 2004, in the District of Columbia,
also known as "SCOOTER LIBBY,"
defendant herein, did knowingly and corruptly endeavor to influence, obstruct and impede the due
administration of justice, namely proceedings before Grand Jury 03-3, by misleading and deceiving
the grand jury as to when, and the manner and means by which, LIBBY acquired and subsequently
disclosed to the media information concerning the employment of Valerie Wilson by the CIA.
It was part of the corrupt endeavor that during his grand jury testimony, defendant
LIBBY made the following materially false and intentionally misleading statements and
representations, in substance, under oath:
When LIBBY spoke with Tim Russert of NBC News, on or about July 10,
Russert asked LIBBY if LIBBY knew that Wilson's wife worked for
the CIA, and told LIBBY that all the reporters knew it; and
At the time of this conversation, LIBBY was surprised to hear that
Wilson's wife worked for the CIA;
LIBBY advised Matthew Cooper of Time magazine on or about July 12, 2003,
that he had heard that other reporters were saying that Wilson's wife worked for the CIA, and further
advised him that LIBBY did not know whether this assertion was true; and
LIBBY advised Judith Miller of the New York Times on or about July 12,
2003 that he had heard that other reporters were saying that Wilson's wife worked for the CIA but
LIBBY did not know whether that assertion was true.
It was further part of the corrupt endeavor that at the time defendant LIBBY made
each of the above-described materially false and intentionally misleading statements and
representations to the grand jury, LIBBY was aware that they were false, in that:
When LIBBY spoke with Tim Russert of NBC News on or about July 10,
Russert did not ask LIBBY if LIBBY knew that Wilson's wife
worked for the CIA, nor did he tell LIBBY that all the reporters knew
it; and
At the time of this conversation, LIBBY was well aware that
Wilson's wife worked at the CIA; in fact, LIBBY had participated in
multiple prior conversations concerning this topic, including on the
following occasions:
In or about early June 2003, LIBBY learned from the Vice
President that Wilson's wife worked for the CIA in the
Counterproliferation Division;
On or about June 11, 2003, LIBBY was informed by a senior
CIA officer that Wilson's wife was employed by the CIA and
that the idea of sending him to Niger originated with her;
On or about June 12, 2003, LIBBY was informed by the
Under Secretary of State that Wilson's wife worked for the
On or about June 14, 2003, LIBBY discussed "Joe Wilson"
and "Valerie Wilson" with his CIA briefer, in the context of
Wilson's trip to Niger;
On or about June 23, 2003, LIBBY informed reporter Judith
Miller that Wilson's wife might work at a bureau of the CIA;
On or about July 7, 2003, LIBBY advised the White House
Press Secretary that Wilson's wife worked for the CIA;
In or about June or July 2003, and in no case later than on or
about July 8, 2003, LIBBY was advised by the Assistant to
the Vice President for Public Affairs that Wilson's wife
worked for the CIA;
On or about July 8, 2003, LIBBY advised reporter Judith
Miller of his belief that Wilson's wife worked at the CIA; and
On or about July 8, 2003, LIBBY had a discussion with the
Counsel to the Office of the Vice President concerning the
paperwork that would exist if a person who was sent on an
overseas trip by the CIA had a spouse who worked at the
LIBBY did not advise Matthew Cooper, on or about July 12, 2003, that
LIBBY had heard other reporters were saying that Wilson's wife worked for the CIA, nor did
LIBBY advise him that LIBBY did not know whether this assertion was true; rather, LIBBY
confirmed to Cooper, without qualification, that LIBBY had heard that Wilson's wife worked at the
CIA; and
LIBBY did not advise Judith Miller, on or about July 12, 2003, that LIBBY
had heard other reporters were saying that Wilson's wife worked for the CIA, nor did LIBBY advise
her that LIBBY did not know whether this assertion was true;
In violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1503.
(False Statement)
The Grand Jury realleges Paragraphs 1-26 of Count One as though fully set forth
During the course of the criminal investigation conducted by the Federal Bureau of
Investigation and the Department of Justice, the following matters, among others, were material to
that investigation:
When, and the manner and means by which, defendant LIBBY learned that
Wilson's wife was employed by the CIA;
Whether and when LIBBY disclosed to members of the media that Wilson's
wife was employed by the CIA;
The language used by LIBBY in disclosing any such information to the
media, including whether LIBBY expressed uncertainty about the accuracy of any information he
may have disclosed, or described where he obtained the information; and
LIBBY's knowledge as to whether any information he disclosed was
classified at the time he disclosed it.
On or about October 14 and November 26, 2003, in the District of Columbia,
also known as "SCOOTER LIBBY,"
defendant herein, did knowingly and willfully make a materially false, fictitious, and fraudulent
statement and representation in a matter within the jurisdiction of the Federal Bureau of
Investigation, an agency within the executive branch of the United States, in that the defendant, in
response to questions posed to him by agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, stated that:
During a conversation with Tim Russert of NBC News on July 10 or 11, 2003,
Russert asked LIBBY if LIBBY was aware that Wilson's wife worked for the CIA.
LIBBY responded to Russert that he did not know that, and Russert replied that all
the reporters knew it. LIBBY was surprised by this statement because, while
speaking with Russert, LIBBY did not recall that he previously had learned about
Wilson's wife's employment from the Vice President.
As defendant LIBBY well knew when he made it, this statement was false in that
when LIBBY spoke with Russert on or about July 10 or 11, 2003:
Russert did not ask LIBBY if LIBBY knew that Wilson's wife worked for
the CIA, nor did he tell LIBBY that all the reporters knew it; and
At the time of this conversation, LIBBY was well aware that Wilson's wife
worked at the CIA;
In violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1001(a)(2).
(False Statement)
The Grand Jury realleges Paragraphs 1 and 2 of Count Two as though fully set forth
On or about October 14 and November 26, 2003, in the District of Columbia,
also known as "SCOOTER LIBBY,"
defendant herein, did knowingly and willfully make a materially false, fictitious, and fraudulent
statement and representation in a matter within the jurisdiction of the Federal Bureau of
Investigation, an agency within the executive branch of the United States, in that the defendant, in
response to questions posed to him by agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, stated that:
During a conversation with Matthew Cooper of Time magazine on July 12, 2003,
LIBBY told Cooper that reporters were telling the administration that Wilson's wife
worked for the CIA, but LIBBY did not know if this was true.
As defendant LIBBY well knew when he made it, this statement was false in that:
LIBBY did not advise Cooper on or about July 12, 2003 that reporters were telling the
administration that Wilson's wife worked for the CIA, nor did LIBBY advise him that LIBBY did
not know whether this was true; rather, LIBBY confirmed for Cooper, without qualification, that
LIBBY had heard that Wilson's wife worked at the CIA;
In violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1001(a)(2).
The Grand Jury realleges Paragraphs 1-30 of Count One as though fully set forth
On or about March 5, 2004, in the District of Columbia,
also known as "SCOOTER LIBBY,"
defendant herein, having taken an oath to testify truthfully in a proceeding before a grand jury of the
United States, knowingly made a false material declaration, in that he gave the following testimony
regarding a conversation that he represented he had with Tim Russert of NBC News, on or about July
10, 2003 (underlined portions alleged as false):
. . . . And then he said, you know, did you know that this ­ excuse me, did you know
that Ambassador Wilson's wife works at the CIA? And I was a little taken aback by
that. I remember being taken aback by it. And I said ­ he may have said a little more
but that was ­ he said that. And I said, no, I don't know that. And I said, no, I don't
know that intentionally because I didn't want him to take anything I was saying as in
any way confirming what he said, because at that point in time I did not recall that
I had ever known, and I thought this is something that he was telling me that I was
first learning. And so I said, no, I don't know that because I want to be very careful
not to confirm it for him, so that he didn't take my statement as confirmation for him.
Now, I had said earlier in the conversation, which I omitted to tell you, that
this ­ you know, as always, Tim, our discussion is off-the-record if that's okay with
you, and he said, that's fine.
So then he said ­ I said ­ he said, sorry ­ he, Mr. Russert said to me, did you
know that Ambassador Wilson's wife, or his wife, works at the CIA? And I said, no,
I don't know that. And then he said, yeah ­ yes, all the reporters know it. And I said,
again, I don't know that. I just wanted to be clear that I wasn't confirming anything
for him on this. And you know, I was struck by what he was saying in that he
thought it was an important fact, but I didn't ask him anymore about it because I
didn't want to be digging in on him, and he then moved on and finished the
conversation, something like that.
In truth and fact, as LIBBY well knew when he gave this testimony, it was false in
Russert did not ask LIBBY if LIBBY knew that Wilson's wife worked for
the CIA, nor did he tell LIBBY that all the reporters knew it; and
At the time of this conversation, LIBBY was well aware that Wilson's wife
worked at the CIA;
In violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1623.
The Grand Jury realleges Paragraphs 1-30 of Count One as though fully set forth
On or about March 5, 2004 and March 24, 2004, in the District of Columbia,
also known as "SCOOTER LIBBY,"
defendant herein, having taken an oath to testify truthfully in a proceeding before a grand jury of the
United States, knowingly made a false material declaration, in that he gave the following testimony
regarding his conversations with reporters concerning the employment of Joseph Wilson's wife by
the CIA (underlined portions alleged as false):
Testimony Given on or about March 5, 2004 Regarding a Conversation
With Matthew Cooper on or About July 12, 2003:
And it's your specific recollection that when you told Cooper about
Wilson's wife working at the CIA, you attributed that fact to what
reporters ­
­ plural, were saying. Correct?
I was very clear to say reporters are telling us that because in my mind
I still didn't know it as a fact. I thought I was ­ all I had was this
information that was coming in from the reporters.
. . . .
And at the same time you have a specific recollection of telling him,
you don't know whether it's true or not, you're just telling him what
reporters are saying?
Yes, that's correct, sir. And I said, reporters are telling us that, I don't
know if it's true. I was careful about that because among other things,
I wanted to be clear I didn't know Mr. Wilson. I don't know ­ I think
I said, I don't know if he has a wife, but this is what we're hearing.
Testimony Given on or about March 24, 2004 Regarding Conversations
With Reporters:
And let me ask you this directly. Did the fact that you knew that the
law could turn, the law as to whether a crime was committed, could
turn on where you learned the information from, affect your account
for the FBI when you told them that you were telling reporters
Wilson's wife worked at the CIA but your source was a reporter rather
than the Vice-President?
No, it's a fact. It was a fact, that's what I told the reporters.
And you're, you're certain as you sit here today that every reporter you
told that Wilson's wife worked at the CIA, you sourced it back to
other reporters?
Yes, sir, because it was important for what I was saying and because
it was ­ that's what ­ that's how I did it.
. . . .
The next set of questions from the Grand Jury are ­ concern this fact.
If you did not understand the information about Wilson's wife to have
been classified and didn't understand it when you heard it from Mr.
Russert, why was it that you were so deliberate to make sure that you
told other reporters that reporters were saying it and not assert it as
something you knew?
I want ­ I didn't want to ­ I didn't know if it was true and I didn't want
people ­ I didn't want the reporters to think it was true because I said
it. I ­ all I had was that reporters are telling us that, and by that I
wanted them to understand it wasn't coming from me and that it
might not be true. Reporters write things that aren't true sometimes,
or get things that aren't true. So I wanted to be clear they didn't, they
didn't think it was me saying it. I didn't know it was true and I wanted
them to understand that. Also, it was important to me to let them
know that because what I was telling them was that I don't know Mr.
Wilson. We didn't ask for his mission. That I didn't see his report.
Basically, we didn't know anything about him until this stuff came out
in June. And among the other things, I didn't know he had a wife.
That was one of the things I said to Mr. Cooper. I don't know if he's
married. And so I wanted to be very clear about all this stuff that I
didn't, I didn't know about him. And the only thing I had, I thought
at the time, was what reporters are telling us.
. . . .
Well, talking to the other reporters about it, I don't see as a crime. What I
said to the other reporters is what, you know ­ I told a couple reporters what
other reporters had told us, and I don't see that as a crime.
In truth and fact, as LIBBY well knew when he gave this testimony, it was false in
that LIBBY did not advise Matthew Cooper or other reporters that LIBBY had heard other reporters
were saying that Wilson's wife worked for the CIA, nor did LIBBY advise Cooper or other reporters
that LIBBY did not know whether this assertion was true;
In violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1623.


Special Counsel
Document Outline

Posted by David A at 03:40 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 5594 Words
Spin squelched!

"That spin wont fly!"

Special Prosecuter Patrick Fitzgerald, answering Republican spin on the indictment of Scooter Libby. Rove may get off, but the question remains if major damage has already been done to the credibility of the Administration.

Posted by David A at 02:41 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 38 Words
Libby Indicted!
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff, was indicted Friday by a federal grand jury investigating the public unmasking of an undercover CIA operative.

Charges included making false statements, obstruction of justice, and perjury, court documents show.

Indictments in the case were the first in a nearly two-year investigation into the public unmasking of an undercover CIA operative. Special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald has scheduled a 2 p.m. ET news conference.

Quote of the Day:

David Gergen, a former adviser to presidents Nixon, Ford, Reagan and Clinton, told CNN's "Larry King Live" that indictments in the case could have an enormous impact on the Iraq war.

"Because if there are indictments, it will not only be people close to the president, the vice president of the United States, but they will raise questions about whether criminal acts were perpetrated to help get the country into war."

Some people have been raising those same questions for a VERY long time. We are either on a course to see some indictments for lying on the part of some major players in this administration, or the beginnings of a conspiracy that could rival Watergate in it's implications. Whatever happens, even the most hardcore Bush supporters are going to find this one difficult to successfully spin.

Rove is not out of the water yet.

Rove's attorney Robert Luskin issued a statement Friday that Fitzgerald "has advised Mr. Rove that he has made no decision about whether or not to bring charges."

And this case along with the DeLay Case and other investigations into prominent Republicans, does not bode well for the Republican Party at this point. At a moment when the Republican Party needs him the most, Spinmiester Karl Rove may be too busy trying to save his own hide, to spin his party out of trouble...

There will likely be a lot of commentary on the issue from both sides. I found this interesting:

Perjury by the President of the United States: No big deal. Everyone lies. Perjury by an assistant to the Vice-President who until last month almost no one had ever heard of: A serious challenge to our democracy and he should be executed.

Special Prosecutor expanding an original investigation to cover perjury by the President of the United States: A partisan tool, out of control prosecutor , hell-bent on destroying our country.
Special Prosecutor expanding an original investigation to cover perjury by an assistant to the Vice-President who until last month almost no one had ever heard of: An absolute requirement for the sake of our country. Democracy would crumble without it.

So let me see... Perjury to cover up personal misconduct vs. Perjury to cover up the outting of a CIA agent...

Choice seems simple to me.... What about you....

And I must have missed something here:

Where in any of these documents does it say Plame was a CIA agent?

Posted by David A at 12:07 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0) | 489 Words
October 27, 2005
If True...

This news....

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald is focusing his investigation into the leak of a CIA operative's identity on whether White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove committed perjury, two lawyers involved in the case told CNN.

Fitzgerald is expected to announce Friday the results of his investigation and whether he has come up with indictments, a source said.

The source said Fitzgerald summarized his case before the grand jury Wednesday and met with the U.S. District Court's chief justice afterward for about 45 minutes.

will be the biggest non-surprise in U.S. political history.

Posted by David A at 05:32 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 98 Words
October 16, 2005
Karl Rove and The CIA Leak... The Saga continues

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Karl Rove testified to a grand jury for the fourth and final time Friday, smiling as he emerged from hours of questioning about his possible role in the leak of a covert CIA officer's identity.

White House spokesman Scott McClellan said that statements in the summer that Rove retained the president's confidence remained true. However, McClellan declined repeatedly to utter words of confidence outright.

Prosecutors had warned Rove before his latest grand jury appearance that there was no guarantee he would not be indicted. The grand jury's term is due to expire October 28.

"Karl continues to do his duties as deputy chief of staff and senior adviser to the president," McClellan said. "What I said previously still stands."

Rove spent about four-and-a-half hours inside the federal courthouse, and left without commenting to reporters.

His lawyer, Robert D. Luskin, said Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald "has not advised Mr. Rove that he is a target of the investigation and affirmed that he has made no decision concerning charges. The special counsel has indicated that he does not anticipate the need for Mr. Rove's further cooperation."

It will be interesting to see how this all plays out. Since I have been so busy with the project in Guatemala, I have not had time to focus much on news or politics. The continued interest in Rove, does not bode well for the White House.

Posted by David A at 12:40 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 234 Words
September 30, 2005
Will Scooter get the Boot?

That is what we all want to know now that this news is out:

(CNN) -- After spending 12 weeks in jail for refusing to name a source, The New York Times reporter Judith Miller testified Friday before a federal grand jury looking into a CIA leak case after her source gave her permission.

Miller appeared before the grand jury after her attorneys reached an agreement with prosecutors on the scope of her testimony, "which satisfied my obligation as a reporter to keep faith with my sources," she said in a statement.

"It's good to be free," Miller said after her release Thursday. "I am leaving jail today because my source has now voluntarily and personally released me from my promise of confidentiality regarding our conversations."

She did not identify the source.

Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff, called Miller in prison September 19 to personally free her from the pledge of confidentiality, a move that apparently contributed to her release, Libby's attorney, Joseph Tate of Philadelphia, told CNN.

New York Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. said the newspaper supported Miller's decision to testify.

It will be interesting to see if Bush now honors his pledge to fire anyone responsible for this leak, AND perhaps more importantly, if there are prosecutions in the case.

The other question that will be asked is what Cheney knew about the leak, especially in light of accusations that Cheney pressured the CIA to provide WMD evidence to justify the Iraq War. This is another stinker...

In the meantime, I am sure Miller will get a nice fat book deal out of it...

Posted by David A at 08:45 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack (1) | 272 Words
August 28, 2005
The Sith Lord of the GOP - Exposed

Great Op/Ed piece on

SOME WHITE House sympathizers have attempted to portray Karl Rove's role in the Valerie Plame scandal as that of a statesman, seeking to provide President Bush with the best information possible on Saddam Hussein's nuclear ambitions so that Bush could set policy based on facts. This has been met with deserved skepticism. Rove's career, even before he became Bush's deputy chief of staff, is rich with reasons to think his motives in helping to identify Plame as a CIA agent were far darker.

After all, Plame's identity was revealed in a Robert Novak column on July 14, 2003, just eight days after her husband, Joseph Wilson, had embarrassed Bush over his Iraq war rationale. And Rove had talked with Novak on July 9.

As John Roberts, the Supreme Court nominee and federal appeals court judge, wrote last month in another context, the fact that ''sometimes dogs do eat homework" is no reason to ignore more-logical explanations.

Rove's record has been consistent. Over 35 years, he has been a master of dirty tricks, divisiveness, innuendo, manipulation, character assassination, and roiling partisanship.

He started early. In 1970, when he was 19 and active as a college Republican -- though he didn't graduate from college -- Rove pretended to volunteer for a Democratic candidate in Illinois, stole some campaign stationery, and used it to disrupt a campaign event. Later, in Texas, he gave testimony in court that was embarrassing to an opponent of one of Rove's clients, even though it was not true, according to the book ''Bush's Brain," by two veteran Texas newsmen, James Moore and Wayne Slater.

Negative attacks have often been the center of Rove's strategies. In a race between Texas Governor Mark White and his Republican opponent, Bill Clements, Rove wrote in a memo: ''Anti-White messages are more important than positive Clements messages."

Often Rove has skated on the edge of being identified with certainty as the author of dirty tricks. In 1986, the discovery of a planted listening device in Rove's own office was widely publicized, damaging the Democrats. Many suspect that the source was Rove himself. This was never proven, but Moore and Slater say, ''Karl Rove remains a prime suspect." In 1989, Texas populist Jim Hightower was damaged by grand jury leaks for which, Moore and Slater say, ''Rove remains the most likely source."

Again, most of the personal slurs against candidates who had the temerity to run against Rove's clients have not been pinned on Rove personally, but they follow a pattern. George W. Bush ousted Ann Richards from the Texas governor's office in 1994 after a whisper campaign focused on a small number of Richards appointees who were lesbians and even suggested that Richards was gay. Bush himself stoked the fire, saying some Richards appointees "had agendas that may have been personal in nature."

The Rove issue has been pushed off the front page by recent news and by Cindy Sheehan, but this commentary may be evidence that the issue may be out of sight, but not, "out of mind," for the mainstream media.

Posted by David A at 05:20 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0) | 516 Words
August 22, 2005
The Violation of Cindy Sheehan...

From Frank Rich's NY Times Column:

Hat Tip Dan Gillmor.

CINDY SHEEHAN couldn't have picked a more apt date to begin the vigil that ambushed a president: Aug. 6 was the fourth anniversary of that fateful 2001 Crawford vacation day when George W. Bush responded to an intelligence briefing titled "Bin Laden Determined to Attack Inside the United States" by going fishing. On this Aug. 6 the president was no less determined to shrug off bad news. Though 14 marine reservists had been killed days earlier by a roadside bomb in Haditha, his national radio address that morning made no mention of Iraq. Once again Mr. Bush was in his bubble, ensuring that he wouldn't see Ms. Sheehan coming. So it goes with a president who hasn't foreseen any of the setbacks in the war he fabricated against an enemy who did not attack inside the United States in 2001.

When these setbacks happen in Iraq itself, the administration punts. But when they happen at home, there's a game plan. Once Ms. Sheehan could no longer be ignored, the Swift Boating began. Character assassination is the Karl Rove tactic of choice, eagerly mimicked by his media surrogates, whenever the White House is confronted by a critic who challenges it on matters of war. The Swift Boating is especially vicious if the critic has more battle scars than a president who connived to serve stateside and a vice president who had "other priorities" during Vietnam.

The most prominent smear victims have been Bush political opponents with heroic Vietnam resumes: John McCain, Max Cleland, John Kerry. But the list of past targets stretches from the former counterterrorism czar Richard Clarke to Specialist Thomas Wilson, the grunt who publicly challenged Donald Rumsfeld about inadequately armored vehicles last December. The assault on the whistle-blower Joseph Wilson - the diplomat described by the first President Bush as "courageous" and "a true American hero" for confronting Saddam to save American hostages in 1991 - was so toxic it may yet send its perpetrators to jail.

True to form, the attack on Cindy Sheehan surfaced early on Fox News, where she was immediately labeled a "crackpot" by Fred Barnes. The right-wing blogosphere quickly spread tales of her divorce, her angry Republican in-laws, her supposed political flip-flops, her incendiary sloganeering and her association with known ticket-stub-carrying attendees of "Fahrenheit 9/11." Rush Limbaugh went so far as to declare that Ms. Sheehan's "story is nothing more than forged documents, there's nothing about it that's real."

But this time the Swift Boating failed, utterly, and that failure is yet another revealing historical marker in this summer's collapse of political support for the Iraq war.

As usual Rich pulls no punches...

Read it all. It demonstrates an all to clear pattern of abuse on the part of this Administration, abuse of power, abuse of the truth, abuse of the trust of the American Public. It also demonstrates further the sense of invulnerability that this administration feels. And rightfully so. They have successfully used the same tactic again and again and again...

But as Rich says:

When the Bush mob attacks critics like Ms. Sheehan, its highest priority is to change the subject. If we talk about Richard Clarke's character, then we stop talking about the administration's pre-9/11 inattentiveness to terrorism. If Thomas Wilson is trashed as an insubordinate plant of the "liberal media," we forget the Pentagon's abysmal failure to give our troops adequate armor (a failure that persists today, eight months after he spoke up). If we focus on Joseph Wilson's wife, we lose the big picture of how the administration twisted intelligence to gin up the threat of Saddam's nonexistent W.M.D.'s.

The hope this time was that we'd change the subject to Cindy Sheehan's "wacko" rhetoric and the opportunistic left-wing groups that have attached themselves to her like barnacles. That way we would forget about her dead son. But if much of the 24/7 media has taken the bait, much of the public has not.

this time the vast majority of the American Public is NOT buying it. The very principle of repeating something often enough until it becomes truth, has backfired. The American Public has been hearing about Administration lies and manipulation for years now, and the idea is finaly starting to sink in...

The majority of Americans feel compassion for Cindy Sheehan. While her protractors are vocal, the majority see her as a Mother grieving over the loss of a son, who is entitled to her moment with the President. His fundraising, vacationing and grandstanding with Lance Armstrong have come across as callous and heartless, at the very moment when he needs to be explaining some things not only to Sheehan, but to the whole nation. Bush ran the first time as a Straight Talk candidate. Those of us who watched the campaign from the Left, never bought this in the first place, but a lot of people did. His failure to provide Americans with a straight answer on the debacle in Iraq has eroded American confidence in him, and his administration. It does not help his case when his Generals are saying one thing, His SecDef another and Vice President something entirely different altogether.

Recent poll numbers more than anything, demonstrate a lack of confidence on the part of the American Public in ANYTHING having to do with Iraq, and rightfully so...

The attacks on Sheehan have only made the matter worse. I predict that Bush will eventually meet with Sheehan, calls to do so from within his own party have made this a nearly forgone conclusion. The delays at this point are more than likely based on Karl Rove trying to determine the best way to spin a lose/lose situation for Bush.

Posted by David A at 12:46 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack (0) | 959 Words
August 21, 2005
Welcome Salon dot Com Readers - Updated

Welcome to Daou Report readers. Please feel free to comment on the post that the Daou Report linked to, as well as anything else you find interesting on ISOU.

And if you want to read two more interesting viewpoints on the effects of the war in Iraq on Bush's legacy. Professor Bainbridge and Kevin Drum have two excellent pieces on the subject. It is heartening to see Conservatives like Bainbridge waking up to the reality of this folly.

I found these two comments, particularly compelling:

The trouble with Bush's justification for the war is that it uses American troops as fly paper. Send US troops over to Iraq, where they'll attract all the terrorists, who otherwise would have come here, and whom we'll then kill. This theory has proven fallacious. The first problem is that the American people are unwilling to let their soldiers be used as fly paper. If Iraq has proven anything, it has confirmed for me the validity of the Powell Doctrine.


The second problem is that the fly paper strategy
seems to be radicalizing our foes even more. For every fly that gets
caught, it seems as though 10 more spring up. This should hardly come
as a surprise to anybody who has watched Israel pursue military
solutions to its terrorist problems, after all. Does anybody really
think Israel's military actions have left Hezbollah or Hamas with fewer
foot soldiers? To the contrary, the London bombing suggests to me that
it is only a matter of time before the jihadists strike in the US
again, even though our troops remain hung out as fly paper in the
Augean Stables of Iraq. {Update: The news
that Scotland Yard foiled a gas attack on the House of Commons, for
which the Yard deserves mega-kudos, doesn't change my mind. As the
climax of Tom Clancy's novel Debt of Honor suggests (and I still wonder of that inspired 9/11), the terrorists only need to win once. Conversely, the latest news
about that rocket attack on a US Navy ship in Jordan seems to confirm
my concerns: "The Abdullah Azzam Brigades -- an al-Qaida-linked group
that claimed responsibility for the bombings which killed at least 64
people at Sharm el-Sheik in July and 34 people at two other Egyptian
resorts last October -- said in an Internet statement that its fighters
had fired the Katyushas, bolstering concerns that Islamic extremists
had opened a new front in the region." Indeed, the NYT reports
that: "The possible involvement of Iraqis and the military-style attack
have raised fears that militants linked to Iraq's insurgency may be
operating on Jordanian soil."}

I have to admit, I often wonder what some Conservatives out there are smoking, that they can't see the obvious. I am convinced that they do see it. If 2000 was a heady experience for Conservatives who had suffered through eight years of Bill Clinton, despite aggressive attempts to get rid of him at any cost, then 2004, after surviving numerous mini scandals and debunking Rathergate, must have been the greatest of highs.

That Republicans managed to take healthy majorities in both Houses, and seemed to dominate the U.S. political agenda, must have given Conservatives a sense of invulnerability. But the cracks have been showing in the armor for some time now, and it has taken "Rovian," measures to keep the fact of the Emperors Nakedness from the American Public. It must be painful in the extreme to see those cracks appearing, and know that not only did they make a monumental mistake, but that all they worked so hard for is based on a foundation of lies, deception and corruption.

Admittedly, the Downing Street Memos, in and of themselves might have been compelling to those who already suspected the truth, but they were not "smoking gun," enough to convince the majority of the faithful. This is especially true of those who invested so heavily in what they felt was a new Conservative Revolution. They have been rewarded by stark failures on the part of the Administration to propel that Revolution forward, and have instead seen it get bogged down in a morass of ineptitude. For a time, they were able to defend against this ineptitude by making the issue "Liberal Hate of Bush," rather than accepting the realities of consistent and repeated failure by the Administration to accomplish much of anything, except successfully defending itself against charge after charge. Now, with more and more Conservatives beginning to acknowledge the obvious, the spin begins to ring hollow, even for those who once believed it.

Even still, some refuse to acknowledge the obvious:

I honestly don't see anything "inappropriate" about it. Cindy accuses the President of "lying" about several of the reasons for war in Iraq, so maybe these television stations are worried about giving air time to somebody calling the President a liar when its clear to most of us with common sense that he didn't lie about Iraq. But that's just a guess.

Were it up to me, I'd have let the ad run. Most Americans don't agree with the idea that the President "lied" about the WMD's and know that Saddam had plenty of ties to al Qaeda, though not to the 9/11 attacks specifically. This is why Americans re-elected the President in the face of these accusations of lying. Putting Cindy Sheehan up to repeat these accusations again is only going to do more harm to her causes than it would to the cause of the President.

Rob's argument is deeply flawed... First off, recent polls indicate that as many as 51% of Americans feel the American Public was deceived about Iraq. With some polls nearing 60%. So the argument that "Most Americans believe that the President did not lie is intellectually and morally dishonest.

The Left has often made this spin easier, by failing to stay on message, and by failing to present a clear alternative. The Left has also been guilty of wimping out at key times. Those who have shown strength, have been attacked as members of the "Loony Left." Rove has been able to successfully exploit this time and time again by pointing out the inconsistency of the Left's message, while hammering away on the Administration's, even in those cases where it was obvious that the Administration message was a nefarious one. Rove and his Conservative Disciples have been Masters of hammering away on a message until it BECOMES truth, even when it is clear to any thinking person that the message lacks logic.

9/11 was a catharsis for America. Karl Rove and the Administration have shamelessly taken advantage of this to smear Liberals, out a CIA agent in an act of revenge, and execute a disastrous and unjustified war. This administration's legacy will be based on Post 9/11. With information coming to light almost daily on how badly they bungled the so called "War on Terror," and with little else to point to as accomplishments, Bush's legacy will likely suffer. More significantly, he may join Nixon as a President corrupted by his own sense of infallibility.

Posted by David A at 11:52 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0) | 1187 Words
August 06, 2005
Count Prozac Novak, being Clowned all over!
Reversing their earlier decision to keep the unburied corpse of Novak on the air, CNN executives have announced that the zombie propagandist's decaying flesh will be "temporarily" entombed in a lead-lined refrigerated crypt at the Hanford Nuclear Energy Reservation in Washington State.

Network executives acted Thursday after Novak's body staggered to its feet in the middle of a joint interview with the mummified remains of James Carville, and vomited a noxious heap of its own decomposed organs directly into the lap of CNN host Ed Henry. The reanimated corpse then lurched off the set, leaving a trail of wriggling maggots and liquified fecal matter behind it.

"It was just the usual stuff," said one CNN producer present in the studio at the time. "Henry's had all his shots, and the steam hoses were ready. But when the suits found out that Novak said 'bullshit' on camera, they totally lost it. The promotional contract specifically required him to call it 'high-grade organic fertilizer from a naturally abundant bovine source.' The ad department was furious."

Novak woke up one morning, stretched, guzzled the blood of some innocents, scratched, got a cackling call from fellow-Sith Lord Karl Rove, transcribed the story, ignored CIA warnings to do no such thing, ate a sensible dinner, put on his jammies, and went to bed. All in a day's work. Then, a few weeks later, there's a heavy knock on the castle door, and Igor limps in talking about some prosecutor and subpoena papers. Now, suddenly, Novak's the story. All the world's political thinkers are poring over his utterances, waiting watching finding slip-ups and inconsistencies, malapropisms and missteps. Novak reports this sort of news, he doesn't make it. So when Carville goes at him, it's just the last straw.


One of the things the General learned while working as a beertender was how to spot someone who's approaching their limit of 3.2 beer. It's an important skill to have in a small Utah town, because taverns rank somewhere between brothels and coffeehouses as the fastest routes to Hell in the minds of the local populace. The Beehive State's dramshop laws are among the toughest in the country. Woe be unto any rural beertender who allows a customer's blood alcohol content to reach 0.08%.

Mr. Novak looked liked he had reached that point long before he walked off CNN's Inside Politics, yesterday. All the signs are captured in this video. Watch it, and see for yourself. He's slurring his speech, stuttering, and moving his head in the same manner I've seen hundreds of drunks move theirs right before they announce that they could kill me with their bare hands (you'd be surprised how often small town Utah beertenders hear that).

Jesus General

In the meantime, Paul has taken over at Wizbang, to try and explain the whole Who's Who thing... He is not doing much better than Kevin did, but it must be reassuring for Kevin to have one of the Most Respected Voices in the Rightsphere backing his argument... Things that make me shake my nappy Cotton Pickin' Head.

Update: Looks like Lord Pablo of the Sith has deleted my trackback to his Wizbang Post. Oh I am so hurt. Eh, there is a little thing called Technorati Paul, and believe it or not, it gets more exposure than Wizbang, so not to worry, people will still read the post. Revisionist History does not work nearly as well as it used to.

Posted by David A at 06:48 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 581 Words
Defending Novak II

Update to this post.

It's amazing... Truly amazing... Kevin at Wizbang, who has posted:

Update 2: More on Novak and Plame later, but perhaps the raging debate in the comment section can dissect what effect, if any, Novak's piece would have had if he used Valerie Wilson instead of Valerie Plame? Also do you think Novak, on hearing of the wife's involvement got her name from Who's Who and stuck with it OR found the Who's Who reference to backup his source(s)?

*** Evidently one cannot even make a snarky remark about the Plame affair without having to explain oneself ad nauseum. OK here goes...

I'm over generalizing here, but it seem like there wasn't an outing of an agent until two non-secret bits of information were combined.Joseph Wilson's wife's maiden name, most would now agree, was not a secret. That Wilson worked at the CIA was not widely known, but it was hardly a secret [See Cliff May at NRO and Just One Minute]. That Wilson's wife was (or had been) a covert operative was only known to (if reports are to be believed) the Cuban government and perhaps those receiving information form Aldrich Ames, but it was still a secret. Novak puts two pieces of non-secret information together and gets this flashpoint.

But how did that combination "out" a covert agent? I turns out the the Valerie Plame name (remember, according to many commenters her name's no big deal) was her cover. If her cover name was Valerie Jones how exactly would Novak's column as it was written have "outed" her? It's wouldn't have. As former federal prosecutor Joesph DiGenoa contends it sure looks like the CIA didn't exactly bust a nut to "take every conceivable step to protect this person's identity."

to his misguided latest attempt to defend the outing of CIA agent Valerie Plame, has had it blow up in his face. He is getting hammered in his comments by "The Reality Based Community," who has apparently just had enough and called "Bullshit!"

The Right Wing efforts to defend Rove, Novak and the other co-conspirators in the treasonous act of outing an undercover CIA agent have gotten so ridiculous, that they don't even pass the smell test for some on the Right. Novak cracking under the pressure is just another example of things starting to unravel in the disciplined Bush Spin apparatus. This all started a while back with the unraveling of the Armstrong Williams scandal, followed by countless others. The recent Downing Street revelations, The exposure of the ACVR as a disgusting front for Partisan GOP Politics, and countless other mini-scandals, have demonstrated to any RATIONAL thinking person, that this administration is rotten to the core, and that the Emperor Indeed has no clothes.

That Wizbang, (A blog that based on comments on this blog demonstrate), has been discredited even among rational members of the Right (See RINOS), continues to spin the unspinnable, is no surprise. That they would do so with such completely ridiculous arguments, (even for them), is....

Apparently Kool Aide rations are running low, because more and more Right Wing Blogs seem to be changing their tone these days, subtly acknowledging that their Party has been hijacked by an extreme element that wants to impose a dogmatism on them that they never expected and don't support.

Many people on the Right voted for Bush last year for one reason. They saw him being stronger on Terrorism. These one issue voters are seeing religious dogmatism shoved down their throat. They are watching in horror as, "The man who would bring honor back to the White House," does anything but. They are alarmed.

There are those on the Right who absolutely believe the garbage that is coming from the Administration. And there are others who shamefully just cant stomach the idea that they made such a monumental mistake. Perhaps out of embarrassment, perhaps out of a vain hope that they are right, they will continue to defend the indefensible.

As a side note, while he has gotten a lot fewer comments, Rob has gotten slammed too.

Posted by David A at 11:36 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 689 Words
August 05, 2005
Still Sayin' Anything! No Really!

"And, if memory serves me correctly, the information in the Who's Who listings are provided (or at the very least approved) by those listed in the directory themselves. Meaning that Wilson likely "outed" his own wife at least a year before President Bush was even in office."

The Ever so Brilliant Rob from Say Anything....

Eh, what did he "out her" as... His wife?"

Really need to think these things through Robster before you let your desire to crawl up the arse of the Wizbangers get the best of you!

Posted by David A at 09:54 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 91 Words
Bob Novak and the Nuclear Option... hehe...

"Bob Novak's behavior on CNN today was inexcusable and unacceptable," a CNN spokeswoman said. "Mr. Novak has apologized to CNN, and CNN apologizes to its viewers for his language and actions. We've asked Mr. Novak to take some time off."
CNN Spokesperson, referring to Novak loosing his cool during yesterdays taping of Inside Politics.

In my humble opinion, Novak's behavior has been inexcusable for a long time, not the least of which was knowingly blowing a CIA Agents cover.

The incident led to new spin attempts on the Right to excuse Novak's exposure of Valerie Plame, this time by pointing out that Ms. Plame's name is in Who's Who, as the wife of Joe Wilson. I have carefully scanned the Who's Who Article, and don't find a reference to her CIA role, so I am a bit confused as to the relevance of the Who's who article, especially in light of the fact that Novak has already acknowledged that a White House official gave him the information...

Posted by David A at 05:30 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack (1) | 168 Words
August 02, 2005
Hmmmm... The Plot Thickens

From Alternate Brain:

From the August 8 issue of Time:

As the investigation tightens into the leak of the identity of covert CIA operative Valerie Plame, sources tell TIME some White House officials may have learned she was married to former ambassador Joseph Wilson weeks before his July 6, 2003, Op-Ed piece criticizing the Administration. That prospect increases the chances that White House official Karl Rove and others learned about Plame from within the Administration rather than from media contacts. Rove has told investigators he believes he learned of her directly or indirectly from reporters, according to his lawyer.

Who has plans for a kinky celebration following Administration Perp Walks! Hehe...

Recent news has taken Rove off the front page and off our minds for a few days. Time to get back on the job!

Meanwile scumbag Novak admitted today that he outted Valerie Plame, even after the CIA asked him not to. Sounds like the Wizbang and the Boys meme that Plame was an unprotected assett is starting to fall apart.

Posted by David A at 12:43 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 174 Words
July 28, 2005
Did Judith Miller start Plamegate?

This is some devastating Stuff! Is a lot of it conjecture, yeah it is, but it is brilliant conjecture. Read the whole thing here.

Not everyone in the Times building is on the same page when it comes to Judy Miller. The official story the paper is sticking to is that Miller is a heroic martyr, sacrificing her freedom in the name of journalistic integrity.

But a very different scenario is being floated in the halls. Here it is: It's July 6, 2003, and Joe Wilson's now famous op-ed piece appears in the Times, raising the idea that the Bush administration has "manipulate[d]" and "twisted" intelligence "to exaggerate the Iraqi threat." Miller, who has been pushing this manipulated, twisted, and exaggerated intel in the Times for months, goes ballistic. Someone is using the pages of her own paper to call into question the justification for the war -- and, indirectly, much of her reporting. The idea that intelligence was being fixed goes to the heart of Miller's credibility. So she calls her friends in the intelligence community and asks, Who is this guy? She finds out he's married to a CIA agent. She then passes on the info about Mrs. Wilson to Scooter Libby (Newsday has identified

a meeting Miller had on July 8 in Washington with an "unnamed
government official"). Maybe Miller tells Rove too -- or Libby does.
The White House hatchet men turn around and tell Novak and Cooper. The
story gets out.

This is why Miller doesn't want to reveal her "source" at the White House -- because she was the source. Sure, she first got the info from someone else, and the odds are she wasn't the only one who clued in Libby and/or Rove (the State Dept. memo likely played a role too) but, in this scenario, Miller certainly wasn't an innocent writer caught up in the whirl of history. She had a starring role in it. This also explains why Miller never wrote a story about Plame, because her goal wasn't to write a story, but to get out the story that cast doubts on Wilson's motives. Which Novak did.

Hat tip Stephen, who just made Inside the Blogs on CNN!

Posted by David A at 03:32 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0) | 373 Words
July 25, 2005
Another CIA Operative weighs in on the Plame Issue...

I read with interest this piece yesterday on the Commissar's Blog:

Here's a hint to the Left: If you want to slam George Bush in a letter to Congress, signed by CIA agents, try to avoid including as signatories:

  1. Melvin Goodman - Cynthia McKinney's own 007, or perhaps, Mini-Me
  2. David MacMichael
  3. Ray McGovern
  4. Col. Patrick Lang
  5. Vince Cannistraro

These are all longtime, outspoken, anti-war, anti-Bush partisans, not merely aggrieved and saddened agency professionals.

John Cole, posting at Red State, has the details, and informative links on the individuals.

Clenched fist salute: Jeff Goldstein.

I went and read Goldstien's post, and found the usual garbage, but what I found interesting was the criticism of the officers who complained about the Plame Outing.

Since when does one's political slant keep them from having a position or perspective on current events. Goldstein went on a two day rant recently when I invoked the Yellow Elephant meme against those on the Right who support the war, but chose not to fight in it. The gist of his arguments were that anyone should be able to comment on any subject, regardless of their level of participation in the cause being advocated. The response to the Plame outing is just another example of the rabid hypocrisy of some on the Right. Regardless of Political Leanings, the CIA officers who have taken issue with Plame's outing are FAR more qualified to do so, than those on the Right who chose to cheer lead a war without contributing anything to it.

Today, CNN has a compelling post with another CIA operative criticizing the administration. It will be interesting to see how Goldstein and others spin this one, since this guy is a registered Republican. Of course Goldstein slams him on an article he wrote Four Years ago, where he wrongly stated that Islamic Terrorism was on the decline. Nevertheless, this does not damage his bonifides as a Republican who voted for Bush in 2000.

(CNN) -- A former CIA intelligence official who once worked with Valerie Plame blasted President Bush and his administration for their response to the role of top White House aides in allegedly leaking Plame's identity as a CIA operative.

Speaking on behalf of Democrats in the party's weekly radio address Saturday, Larry Johnson said, "The president has flip-flopped on his promise to fire anyone in the White House implicated in a leak."

Johnson, a registered Republican who voted for Bush in 2000, said he and Plame have been friends since they began their training at the CIA in 1985.

Her name was disclosed in a column by Robert Novak, who is also a contributor to CNN, in July 2003 -- days after her husband, Joe Wilson, a former ambassador, questioned part of President Bush's justification for invading Iraq in a New York Times op-ed piece.

Time magazine correspondent Matthew Cooper said last week that Bush's chief political adviser, Karl Rove, told him Wilson's wife worked for the CIA but did not say her name. Cooper said also that Lewis "Scooter" Libby, chief of staff for Vice President Dick Cheney, confirmed that piece of information.

In reference to the investigation, Bush told reporters last week that "If someone committed a crime, they will no longer work in my administration."

That statement shifted from his previous comment on his response to the reported leak. When asked in June 2004 whether he stood by his promise to fire whoever was found to have leaked Plame's name, Bush replied, "Yes."

A federal grand jury is investigating whether a crime was committed.

Read the whole CNN article, and listen to the Radio Broadcast, (available free on the same page at CNN), then make up your own mind.

Posted by David A at 02:44 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (1) | 620 Words
July 21, 2005
Okay Michael I don't get it....

Michael King of Ramblings Journal writes:

Josh Marshall has boiled the entire sordid Plame/CIA affair down to a basic truism: Joe Wilson's a liar.

I have taken to reading Michael's Blog lately and overall I think it is pretty good for a Conservative. But "Dayum," Michael... How the hell did you spin what Marshall said into, "Joe Wilson is a liar?"

It's late, and my brain's a bit fried from working on an RFP response. What I got out of Josh's post was, "Both Joe Wilson and Karl Rove are childish brats and political hacks, but Karl Rove is a scumbag who probably broke the law. Even if he didn't, what he did was immoral. You want to try to explain to me how you got what you got?
I realize that you probably read too many of your posse's blogs, but Brother you lost me....

Posted by David A at 02:31 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0) | 146 Words
Another Republican Talking Point Goes down in Flames!

Eh... But she wasn't in the field....
Republican Meme

The Reality:

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Eleven former intelligence officers say the leak of CIA officer Valerie Plame's identity may have damaged national security and the government's ability to gather intelligence.

The former officers made their views known in a three-page statement to congressional leaders.

They said the Republican National Committee has circulated suggestions for officials to deal with the Plame case by focusing on the idea that Plame was not working undercover and legally merited no protection.

Thousands of U.S. intelligence officers work at desks in the Washington area every day whose identities are shielded, as Plame's was when her identity was leaked by Bush administration officials, the 11 former officers said.

Read it all... And while you are at it, READ THIS, it says it all.

Hat Tip, Shakespear's Sister

Posted by David A at 02:05 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 141 Words
July 19, 2005
Not the time to lose focus...

Shakespear's Sister makes THE important point of the day:

It might not seem on its face like Karl Rove and SCOTUS nominee John Roberts have much in common, but there's one very important attribute they both share, they're both political hacks. They've served their GOP master in different ways, but in the end, neither of them is any more than a political operative who fulfills a certain ideological role within the party. I could tell you all about Roberts' history with the Republicans, but what difference do specifics make? He's been a judge for two years, and the rest of his career has been spent in the pockets of GOP power players. This is, in the end, just more of the same from Bush & Co.

And could we really have expected any different? Of course not.

There will no doubt be plenty of debate across the blogosphere over the next few days about whether Rove or Rogers should command our collective attention, but it's not really an either-or proposition. Whether it's the Downing Street Memos revealing that the administration was fixing facts and intelligence around the policy, or senior administration officials using their media operatives to discredit a critic (and compromising national security in the process), or an announcement of a GOP hack SCOTUS nominee politically timed to distract from an official investigation of the administration's misdeeds, it's all part of the same ugly picture. Our country's leadership is corrupt. They place ideology before truth, before international law, before national security, before justice. It's just more of the same.

There is no question in my mind what the priority needs to be. If, as it has been suggested by many, the acceleration of the nomination process was designed to take Rove off the front page, it will not work for some of us...

I don't know enough about Roberts to have a strong opinion one way or the other. I have heard through various news sources tonight that he is against the Roe vs. Wade decision. If that is the case, I am sure that there will be a loud outcry across the country from Pro Choice advocates regarding his nomination. I am likewise sure that if he is "out of the mainstream," that there will be a battle in the confirmation hearings.

I for one believe it is important that we continue to push for answers on the Plame outing. And we stop, ONLY when those answers are forthcoming.

Posted by David A at 10:49 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 412 Words
Smear Campaign? Who smeared who?

I just love the Republican talking points that try to paint Rove, Master of Smear, as a victim of a smear campaign. It is becoming clearer every day, who smeared who, and it does not look good for the administration.

From The Washington Post:

Karl Rove had a secret.

In public, he was masterminding President Bush's reelection and brushing off suggestions he had played any part in an unfolding drama: the unmasking of CIA operative Valerie Plame. In private, the senior White House adviser was meeting, on five occasions, with federal prosecutors to tell what he knew about the matter.

The story he would tell prosecutors did not seem to square with the White House's denial that it had played any role in one of the most famous leaks since Watergate. Rove told prosecutors he had discussed Plame in passing with at least two reporters, including the columnist who eventually revealed her name and role in a secret mission that would raise questions about Bush's case for war against Iraq. At the same time, other White House officials were whispering about Plame, too.

It is now clear: There has been an element of pretense to the White House strategy of dealing with the Plame case since the earliest days of the saga. Revelations emerging slowly at first, and in a rapid cascade over the past several days, have made plain that many important pieces of the puzzle were not so mysterious to Rove and others inside the Bush administration. White House officials were aware of Plame and her husband's potentially damaging charge that Bush was "twisting" intelligence about Iraq's nuclear ambitions well before the episode evolved into Washington's latest scandal.

But as the story hurtles toward a conclusion sometime this year, there are several elements that remain uncertain. The most important -- did anyone commit a crime?

This article, based on interviews with lawyers and officials involved in the case, is an effort to step back from the rapidly unfolding events of recent weeks and clarify what is known about the Plame affair and what key factors are still obscure. Those people declined to be identified by name because special prosecutor Patrick J. Fitzgerald has asked that closed-door proceedings not be discussed.

It all started in the early days of 2002 with Joseph C. Wilson IV, a flamboyant ex-diplomat who had left government for a more lucrative life of business consulting. Wilson was a veteran of the diplomatic wars of Iraq and Africa, so it seemed logical to some in the CIA, including his wife, Plame, to send him on a secret mission to Niger. Wilson's task was to determine if Iraqis had tried to purchase yellowcake uranium from Africa to build nuclear weapons.

To a Bush administration intent on selling the American public on war based on the threat posed by Iraq's weapons program, the yellowcake was no small deal. The White House would soon cite it as evidence that Saddam Hussein was pursuing nuclear weapons.

Wilson spent a week in Niger chatting with locals about the allegation, coming to the conclusion that the yellowcake charges were probably unfounded. He reported his findings to the agency -- but they never made their way to the White House.

The story might have ended there, but Bush, Vice President Cheney and other officials decided to make the yellowcake charges a central piece of the administration's evidence in arguing Hussein had designs on a dangerous program of weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear bombs. On the march to war, Bush officials rebuffed concerns from some at the CIA and included in his January 2003 State of the Union the now-famous 16 words: "The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa." Wilson was floored, then furious.

Wilson set out to discredit the charge, working largely through back channels at first to debunk it. He called friends inside the government and the media, and told the New York Times's Nicholas D. Kristof of his findings in Niger. Kristof aired them publicly for the first time in his May 6, 2003, column but did not name Wilson. This caught the attention of officials inside Cheney's office, as well as others involved in war planning, according to people who had talked with them.

The White House, hailing the lightning-quick toppling of Hussein, suddenly found itself on the defensive at home over its WMD claims. It was not just Wilson, but Democrats, reporters and a few former officials who were publicly wondering if Bush had led the nation to war based on flimsy, if not outright false, intelligence.

Administration officials set out to rebuff their critics, Wilson in particular. By the time The Washington Post published Wilson's allegation questioning the intelligence (but not citing his name) on the front page on June, 12, 2003 -- one month before the Plame affair was public -- Wilson was on the administration's radar screen.

The more Wilson pushed, the more the White House was determined to push back against a man they regarded as an irresponsible provocateur.

Read the whole thing, makes a facinating piece of reading...
The funny thing is that I don't even think the people spouting this crap believe it any more.

Posted by David A at 12:26 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0) | 874 Words
July 18, 2005
Wishing it to go away... Wont make it go away!

"Enjoy what remains of Nadagate."

Comments from Conservative Commenter on a post yesterday referencing the ongoing furor over "Plamegate."

Wishful Thinking....

"Matthew Cooper, a reporter for Time magazine, said the White House senior adviser Karl Rove was the first person to tell him that the wife of former Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV was a C.I.A. officer, according to a first-person account in this week's issue of the magazine.

The account also stated that Mr. Rove said Mr. Wilson's wife had played a role in sending Mr. Wilson to Africa to investigate possible uranium sales to Iraq.

The article, a description of Mr. Cooper's testimony last Wednesday to a federal grand jury trying to determine whether White House officials illegally disclosed the identity of a covert intelligence officer, offered the most detailed account yet of how a White House official purportedly did not merely confirm what a journalist knew but supplied that information.

Mr. Cooper said in his article that Mr. Rove did not mention the name of Mr. Wilson's wife, Valerie Wilson, or say that she was a covert officer. But, he wrote: "Was it through my conversation with Rove that I learned for the first time that Wilson's wife worked at the C.I.A. and may have been responsible for sending him? Yes. Did Rove say that she worked at the 'agency' on 'W.M.D.'? Yes.

"Is any of this a crime? Beats me."

The details in Mr. Cooper's article about his conversation with Mr. Rove are largely consistent with the broad outlines of Mr. Rove's grand jury testimony about the conversation as portrayed in news accounts.

But Mr. Cooper's article, a rare look inside the deliberations from a prime participant in this political and journalistic drama, is likely to add fuel to a political firestorm over whether there was a White House effort to disclose Ms. Wilson's identity as payback for her husband's criticism of the administration.

Mr. Rove's allies have said that he did not initiate any conversations with reporters and that he was merely warning them off what he said was faulty information. But White House statements over the past two years have left the impression that administration officials were not involved in identifying Ms. Wilson."

Reporter Says He First Learned of C.I.A. Operative From Rove


Posted by David A at 11:33 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0) | 385 Words
July 17, 2005
Republicans on Offensive in Defense of Rove
"The emerging GOP strategy -- devised by Mehlman and other Rove loyalists outside of the White House -- is to try to undermine those Democrats calling for Rove's ouster, play down Rove's role and wait for President Bush's forthcoming Supreme Court selection to drown out the controversy, according to several high-level Republicans."
The Washington Post

How any American, even Conservatives who supported and voted for this administration, can stomach this kind of lack of respect for the American People, is just incredible to me.

Mehlman, who said he talked with Rove several times in recent days, instructed (italics mine) GOP legislators, lobbyists and state officials to accuse Democrats of dirty politics and argue Rove was guilty of nothing more than discouraging a reporter from writing an inaccurate story, according to RNC talking points circulated yesterday.

"Republicans should stop holding back and go on the offense: fire enough bullets the other way until the Supreme Court overtakes" events, said Rep. Peter T. King (R-N.Y.).

I don't think the American people are going to be so easilly distracted this time.

Posted by David A at 04:36 PM | Comments (8) | TrackBack (0) | 178 Words
Spinning out of control....

Ken Melman of the RNC just got exposed on Late Edition for the hypocrisy of the Administrations position, and inconsistencies in the Spin. Transcripts available later today.

In the interim, Matt Cooper of Time Magazine, appeared on Reliable Sources this morning. After viewing the show, or reading the transcripts below, it is clear that Rove was the one engaged in a smear campaign, AND that he exposed Joe Wilson's wife as a CIA operative.

Looks like the Republican celebrations over the last couple of days were premature and highly optimistic, considering the facts.
It will be interesting to see if there is an adjustment to the spin based on today's events. Melman did NOT do well today...

From Today's Reliable Sources:

I'm Howard Kurtz. Ahead, a special interview on the subject with Bob Woodward.

But first, Judith Miller of "The New York Times" remains behind bars for refusing to testify in the CIA leak case involving Valerie Plame. And my first guest came within hours of joining her in jail.

The disclosure that White House adviser Karl Rove served as a source for "Time" magazine's Matt Cooper, as well as for columnist and CNN commentator Robert Novak, has boosted the story into the media stratosphere this week, with Rove on the covers of both "Time" and "Newsweek" just out this morning.

And the disclosure forced White House spokesman Scott McClellan to abandon his earlier denials that Rove was in any way involved. Let's look at McClellan then and now.


SCOTT MCCLELLAN, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: It is totally ridiculous. I've known Karl -- I've known -- I've known Karl for a long time, and I didn't even need to go ask Karl, because I know the kind of person that he is.

Our policy continues to be that we're not going to get into commenting on an ongoing criminal investigation from this podium.


KURTZ: And joining me now in his first cable news interview since testifying before a grand jury in the Plame case on Wednesday is Matthew Cooper, "Time's" White House correspondent. Welcome.

MATT COOPER, "TIME" MAGAZINE: Hey, thanks, Howie.

KURTZ: You laid it all out in this week's issue of "Time" magazine. "Time," of course, owned by CNN's parent company, Time Warner.

Now, I want to go back to last week. Hours before you were expecting to go to jail -- you'd left home, you've said good-bye to your 6-year-old son -- you got a last-minute waiver from Karl Rove of your pledge of confidentiality about your conversation. How did you feel when that news came through?

COOPER: Well, I felt a good deal of relief. I didn't -- you know, I was never looking forward to going to jail, and I think, you know, I felt comfortable that the source can -- had released me from the pledge.

You know, my principle throughout this two-year court battle that went all the way to the Supreme Court, and even after "Time" magazine, over my objections, handed over my notes and e-mails and outed my source, my principle had always been, only the source can relieve me of this obligation.


KURTZ: ... the so-called blanket waiver, where Rove and other White House officials say, any reporter who dealt with me on this can go ahead and testify. But you say that's not voluntary? Is it any more voluntary to get a last-minute waiver negotiated through lawyers when you're about to go off and be in jail?

COOPER: Well, I think things have changed significantly, Howie. For two years, under the advice of my lawyers and also "Time" editors, I didn't approach Rove about any kind of waiver. They thought it was inappropriate, and might be, you know, lead to legal issues. In any event...

KURTZ: You might have to testify about any conversations you had with him?

COOPER: Yes, exactly.

KURTZ: Right.

COOPER: Now, that morning in "The Wall Street Journal," the same morning I thought I was going off to jail, my lawyer saw a quote from Mr. Rove's lawyer that said, Karl waives all confidentiality about these conversations. If Matt Cooper's going to jail, he's not going to jail for Karl Rove.

We took that as a kind of invitation. My lawyer contacted his lawyer, and over the next couple of hours, they worked out an agreement, which is, you know, specific to me, it was run by Karl Rove, it has signatures. And it gives me a specific waiver for conversations with me in July 2003. That had a degree of specificity and personalness to me that I was comfortable enough accepting.

KURTZ: Can you understand why there seems to be relatively little public sympathy for the journalists involved in this case -- you, Judith Miller -- because you are seen -- you were seen as protecting not whistle-blowing sources, not sources uncovering wrongdoing, but sources who appeared to be doing partisan work, trying to spread the word about Joe Wilson, a prominent administration critic, and saying that his wife, Valerie Plame, had been a covert operative for the CIA?

COOPER: Yeah. I can understand that, I'd say a couple of things to that. First, I don't think we as journalists can sort of pick and choose which sources and which obligations we're going to honor, and say, well, this source doesn't seem to have good motives, I'm not going to take his. I think even as we saw in Deep Throat, Mark Felt, who emerged as Deep Throat, had his own motives, and he had been involved in things that were not so great too. But you know, I think you have to honor your pledge. And my principle all along had been that no court, no corporation could break that pledge from me, but you know, if the source wanted it waived, I would testify.

KURTZ: Turning now to your grand jury testimony on Wednesday. You recalled that conversation back in 2003 with Karl Rove. You were new to the beat as a White House correspondent. He gave you kind of a terse warning about Wilson. What did he say to you?

COOPER: Yeah. Well, in fact, to just put it in context, there was a big hullabaloo that week about the president's State of the Union address and in it, which he had...

KURTZ: The 16 words about...

COOPER: Right, the 16 words...

KURTZ: ... about uranium...

COOPER: ... about Saddam Hussein trying to get uranium in Africa to make nuclear weapons. The White House that week said it may be true, but it was not checked out well enough to merit it being in the State of the Union address. So there was a big controversy on that. And I called Rove with that on my mind.

And he did indeed give me a warning, saying don't get too far out on Wilson, which I took to mean don't lionize Wilson, don't believe everything you hear about Wilson.

KURTZ: Now, you also say, let's read from the article, put it up on the screen -- "This was the first time I had heard anything about Wilson's wife. Rove never once indicated to me that she had any kind of covert status."

What was his tone? Did you have the impression he was trying to disparage or undermine Joe Wilson, to influence the tone of your article?

COOPER: I thought it was disparaging towards Wilson. I thought it was sort of guiding and spoken with great confidence. And as I said, before the -- in "Time" this week, as I said -- and I told the grand jury -- before that conversation, I had never heard about anything about Joe Wilson's wife. After that conversation, I knew that she worked at the CIA, and worked on WMD issues. But as I made clear to the grand jury, I'm certain Rove never used her exact name and certainly never indicated she had a covert status.

KURTZ: But at the end of that conversation, he said something that was a little bit cryptic. What was that?

COOPER: Well, he said, "I've already said too much."

KURTZ: What do you think he meant?

COOPER: Well, at the time I thought, well, maybe he meant he had been indiscrete and had said something important. Later I thought, well, maybe it was actually more benign, like "I've said too much, I've got to get to a meeting."

So I don't really know what he meant, but I do know the memory of that line has stayed with me for a couple of years now.

KURTZ: A lot of people have picked up on your description in the memos to your bureau chief of that conversation -- "It was on double super secret background." What did that mean?

COOPER: Well, Howie, I can now reveal that it was a joke. Karl Rove, when we had the conversation, wanted it to be on deep background, which I took to mean I could use the material but not quote it directly, and certainly not attribute it, that I had to protect the identity of my source. When I wrote the note to my bureau chief, just moments after the conversation with Rove, in a slightly playful way, I echoed the line in the movie "Animal House," where John Belushi's wild fraternity is put on double secret probation. So it was a little bit of humor, and...

KURTZ: You also testified -- actually, you testified last year about your conversation with Lewis Libby, Vice President Cheney's chief of staff. You had repeated what you heard from Rove about Wilson's wife working for the CIA, and what did Libby say?

COOPER: He said words to the effect of, yeah, I've heard that, too.

KURTZ: OK. I am told you had a third administration source, a policy person in Africa. Did the grand jury ask you about anyone else you talked to on this?

COOPER: Well, I don't want to get into all the sources for this article. I'll just say that what I told the grand jury is in "Time" this week, and anything I talked about in the grand jury I had a waiver for.

KURTZ: OK. Now, turning now to just days before you got this last-minute waiver...

COOPER: Yeah, sure.

KURTZ: ... we just talked about, from Karl Rove, and as you referenced earlier, Time, Inc. editor in chief Norman Pearlstine made the decision to turn over your notes and e-mails -- or at least your e-mails -- after trying to get the Supreme Court to hear the case, and he says that journalists are not above the law.

You objected to that decision. Did you feel that Time, Inc. -- you've been fighting for two years, risking jail -- had just pulled the rug out from under you?

COOPER: Well, I thought Time, Inc. had made the wrong decision. I thought Norm Pearlstine, the head of all the "Time" magazines, had done it in a thoughtful and honorable way, but I really disagreed with it, because I thought we were fighting for an important principle and I thought there would be a lot of fallout from handing over the notes. And I think events have borne that out.

KURTZ: You must have been upset.

COOPER: Well, I was, absolutely. And, you know, but I also, you know, respected the way he made the decision. But I was upset. I disagreed with it, and I've been saying so ever since.

KURTZ: Now, at that point, before this waiver from Rove, your wife, Mandy Grunwald, told me that your friends and even your lawyers said, you would now be crazy to go to jail, because they've got the notes. Patrick Fitzgerald, the special prosecutor, knows who your sources are, and even was threatening through your lawyer to charge you with criminal contempt, which meant you could have spent up to a year in jail or even more. Why at that point were you still willing to go to jail, after "Time" had surrendered basically your sources?

COOPER: Well, you're exactly right, Howie. A lot of people, including a lot of journalists, said to me, look, the confidence has been broken. You can't protect a source who has been outed essentially by your employer, by the handing over of these notes and e-mails.

I considered that, but I thought, in the end, that only the source could release me from my obligation, that a court couldn't do it, a corporation couldn't do it, that really I needed to get it personally from the source. And frankly, the idea of getting it from the source was not on my mind until that morning. I mean, I just assumed I was going to jail and I had resigned myself to that.

KURTZ: So even though Pat Fitzgerald knew at this point you talked to Rove, you talked to Libby, he had the notes, he had the e- mails, you still felt that you needed a personal reassurance in this case from Karl Rove, otherwise you were going to spend some time behind bars?

COOPER: Yeah. I mean, I wasn't even looking for the personal reassurance until that morning, when my lawyer called me, reading this quote from Rove's lawyer, essentially inviting us to go and, you know, seek a waiver. But you know, until then, I had basically resigned myself that I was going to have to do some time.

KURTZ: Now, unlike "Time," "The New York Times" has stood firm in this case. Judith Miller now finishing her second week in an Alexandria jail. I asked "The Times" executive editor Bill Keller about the impact of what "Time" did and what "The New York Times" was doing. Let's take a look at that.


BILL KELLER, "NEW YORK TIMES" EXECUTIVE EDITOR: I imagine, you know, that the next occasion that Matt Cooper is in talking to a confidential source of his and promises to, you know, not to betray a person's identity, I can imagine that source saying, sure, I trust Matt Cooper, but do I trust "Time" magazine?


KURTZ: Are you worried about that?

COOPER: Well, let me just correct the way you set that up a little bit, because the situations aren't entirely analogous. Judith Miller was under subpoena, but "The New York Times" was never under subpoena, too. So they, you know, they...

KURTZ: They didn't face the same decision as a corporation.

COOPER: They didn't face the same decision as "Time."

KURTZ: But Keller's point is that next time you've got a source, look, I'll protect you, you've got to tell me this sensitive information, they may trust you but they may not trust "Time."

COOPER: Well, you know, that's possible as a fallout from this decision. I think, you know, if you look at the record that "Time" did take it all the way to the Supreme Court, that this was, you know, kind of an anomalous case, to say the least...

KURTZ: But two other "Time" correspondents, as you know, brought some e-mails from their sources to a meeting with Norm Pearlstine, the sources saying we don't know if we can cooperate with "Time" in the future.

COOPER: Well, this is one of the things I was concerned about when I argued for, you know, holding out, because I thought that there might be fallout like this. But you know, I think, you know, I think "Time" reporters themselves will take it upon themselves to put less in e-mail, you know, to put less in electronic form that the company owns and protect things better. And I think, you know, "Time" will continue to rely on confidential sources. And I think their wariness will ease with time, at least I hope so.

KURTZ: Matt Cooper, you have had a two-year battle on this. I'm sure it's been very draining. You've testified now before the grand jury. You've avoided going to jail, which looked like a very real prospect. How do you cover the White House now? Can you talk to Karl Rove? Can you talk to Lewis Libby? Can you have conversations with them that aren't on the record?

COOPER: Well, I've got to step back and see about all that after all this. It's been a weird two years. You know, I'm used to being a reporter and not in front of microphones and such, and I'd like to get back to that. And that's why this week, after talking to the grand jury, I felt very comfortable getting back into the role of reporter, and simply, since grand jury rules don't prohibit me from telling my story, I just told the readers of "Time" what I told the grand jury, and hopefully that will put this chapter behind me.

KURTZ: Well, we appreciate you talking to us, and not on double super secret background.

COOPER: Never for you, Howie.

KURTZ: Matt Cooper, thanks very much for joining us.

Posted by David A at 12:38 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 2837 Words
July 16, 2005
Defining Treason

This post has been bumped by the stupidity and racism of another blogger, who I think should be run out of the blogsphere!

"I have nothing but contempt and anger for those who betray the trust by exposing the name of our sources. they are in my view the most insidious of traitors."

George Herbert Walker Bush

41st President of the United States

"If there is a Leak out of my administration, I want to know who it is."

George W. Bush

When first questioned about the Plame Leak

Well Mr. President, you KNOW now who it was... What are you going to do about it?

Hat Tip Skippy

Sign John Kerry's petition demanding that Bush fire Rove.

Posted by David A at 10:38 PM | Comments (9) | TrackBack (0) | 119 Words
July 12, 2005
God Help 'em

"Well, I keep trying to figure out exactly what Karl Rove did, and I just can't seem to come up with it. Neither can the media, but that isn't stopping them or Democrats from attempting a royal hatchet job on Rove and the President."

Another Rightwing Spin Miester

A Couple of hints....

1. Maybe you should lay off the Koolaide
2. Read something other than The Washington Times, Wizbang and Captains Quarters.
3. There are more News Sources than Fox

Try those three and get back to us. I am sure that you will eventually figure it out, if the voices in your head dont kill you first.

Posted by David A at 11:13 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 108 Words
I dont get it....

Someone says, David Anderson's wife is a FILL IN THE BLANKS, and anyone who really wants to know, just needs to look. The spin that Rove did not mention her name is perhaps the lamest and most disengenious piece of crap I have ever heard.
I mean have folks on the Right become so jaded with their successes at spin, that they actually believe the American public is going to swallow this?
The same people who were arguing whether a sitting President of the United States should be thrown out of office over his definition of "sex," are now having the ardasity to present this defense, comeon guys, you don't even believe this one yourself!

And if that spin doesnt work:

"some of us are pretty incensed at the idea of a supposedly undercover CIA operative sending her own husband to Niger to dredge up fake facts in an attempt to smear a sitting President."

Rob at Wizbang...

Now... The Reality:

In the January 28 speech, Bush claimed that "the British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa." That assertion was similar to claims madepreviously by administration officials, including Secretary of State Colin Powell (CBS Evening News, 12/19/02), that Iraq had sought to import yellowcake uranium from Niger, a strong indication that Saddam Hussein's regime was reconstituting its nuclear weapons program.

In fact, the Niger story, as documented by journalist Seymour Hersh (New Yorker, 3/31/03) and others, was based on crudely forged documents. In addition, the administration's own investigation in March 2002 concluded that the story was bogus. As one former State Department official put it, "This wasn't highly contested. There weren't strong advocates on theother side. It was done, shot down" (Time, 7/21/03).

Bush's use of the Niger forgeries has received considerable media attention in recent days. Much of this reporting has been valuable, and some outlets have broadened the inquiry beyond one passage in a speech. The Washington Post's Walter Pincus, for example, suggests (7/16/03) that the uranium claim remained in the State of the Union address because "almost all the other evidence had either been undercut or disproved by U.N. inspectors in Iraq."


Joe Wilson came back and said it was not true... It wasn't, how exactly was that a SMEAR?

Posted by David A at 06:07 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0) | 382 Words
Smear Campaign?

The Republican Leadership, as usual is on message. What Karl Rove did was not a bad thing. No, the bad guy is Joe Wilson. This is a classic case of, "change the subject," but it is not working. Watching Scott McCullen sweat in the Press Room, makes it almost worth it. The truth of the matter is that the Administration lied. They lied about Saddam's African Connection, and they lied about Rove being involved. Now, they are attempting to spin their way out of a BIG problem.

Raw Story writes about Republican efforts at spin:

RAW STORY has obtained an exclusive copy of Republican talking points on Bush adviser Karl Rove's leaking the name of a CIA agent to a reporter, circulated by the Republican National Committee to "D.C. Talkers" in Washington.

The document, emblazoned with the words "Special Edition" and dated Tuesday, seeks to discredit claims put forth by Ambassador Joseph Wilson, whose wife was 'outed' as a covert operative by a conservative columnist. After obtaining copies of emails sent from a Time reporter to his editor, Newsweek fingered Rove as a source for the leak which disclosed the agent's identity.

The talking points mirror a release by Republican National Committee Chairman Ken Mehlman earlier Tuesday, in which he declared the attacks on Rove were spawned by the 'MoveOn' wing of the Democratic Party. MoveOn later accused the White House of a'cover up.'

Posted by David A at 04:50 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 234 Words
July 11, 2005

"In my hand I hold a list of 200 Known Agents of The CIA!"

Posted by David A at 11:01 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 14 Words
Lies and the lying liars that tell them...
CIA Leak Quotes

By The Associated PressMon

Some of the denials, other comments, at media briefings by White House spokesman Scott McClellan when asked by reporters whether President Bush's top political adviser, Karl Rove, was involved in the leak of a CIA officer's identity:

Sept. 29, 2003

Q: You said this morning, quote, "The president knows that Karl Rove wasn't involved." How does he know that?

A: Well, I've made it very clear that it was a ridiculous suggestion in the first place. ... I've said that it's not true. ... And I have spoken with Karl Rove.

Q: It doesn't take much for the president to ask a senior official working for him, to just lay the question out for a few people and end this controversy today.

A: Do you have specific information to bring to our attention? ... Are we supposed to chase down every anonymous report in the newspaper? We'd spend all our time doing that."

Q: When you talked to Mr. Rove, did you discuss, "Did you ever have this information?"

A: I've made it very clear, he was not involved, that there's no truth to the suggestion that he was.


Oct. 7, 2003

Q: You have said that you personally went to Scooter Libby (Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff), Karl Rove and Elliott Abrams (National Security Council official) to ask them if they were the leakers. Is that what happened? Why did you do that? And can you describe the conversations you had with them? What was the question you asked?

A: Unfortunately, in Washington, D.C., at a time like this there are a lot of rumors and innuendo. There are unsubstantiated accusations that are made. And that's exactly what happened in the case of these three individuals. They are good individuals. They are important members of our White House team. And that's why I spoke with them, so that I could come back to you and say that they were not involved. I had no doubt with that in the beginning, but I like to check my information to make sure it's accurate before I report back to you, and that's exactly what I did.


Oct. 10, 2003

Q: Earlier this week you told us that neither Karl Rove, Elliot Abrams nor Lewis Libby disclosed any classified information with regard to the leak. I wondered if you could tell us more specifically whether any of them told any reporter that Valerie Plame worked for the CIA?

A: I spoke with those individuals, as I pointed out, and those individuals assured me they were not involved in this. And that's where it stands.

Q: So none of them told any reporter that Valerie Plame worked for the CIA?

A: They assured me that they were not involved in this.

Q: They were not involved in what?

A: The leaking of classified information.

I am just filled with confidence that everything else the White House is telling us is true as well, arent you?

Hat tip Skippy the Bush Kangaroo

Posted by David A at 10:25 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 509 Words
Does any of this even make sense...

So Rob at Wizbang is in full tilt mode defending Rove... Nothing NEW or unexpected there... But read this quote from his post:

Nobody has even been indicted for a crime in this matter yet, much less convicted, yet already the left and the media are framing the debate over the Plame affair as though Rove had undoubtedly broken the law. Its almost as if they're all scrambling to make as much political hay out of these accusations as possible before the grand jury makes its decision and possibly exonerates Rove.

You know what's even more amazing? I bet that if you checked the record you'd find that not many of the people who are Rove's loudest critics now spoke out against Joe Wilson and his fraudulent trip to Niger. I'll bet that not one of the people who are now calling for the removal of Karl Rove's security clearance called for the removal of Valerie Plame's security clearance after her involvement with her husbands smear mission came to light.

You want a matter that is about national security? How about a supposedly undercover CIA operative sending her own husband to Niger to dredge up fake facts in an attempt to smear a sitting President?"

Now lets take a look at this....

First off, I am pretty sure that Rove will not be convicted of anything. The SPIN machine is in overdrive to point out that "he did not have sex with that woman," eh I mean he never mentioned "that woman by name." And despite the fact that he knew she was a CIA analyst on the WMD desk, he of course, "Did not know she was a secret operative." So he will likely get away with, "soiling the blue dress," of the nation. What the media and the left are doing, are asking for accountability, something it would seem ANY American would want.

But what I find MIND BLOWING, is how all of a Sudden Ambassador Wilson is the bad guy:

"dredge up fake facts in an attempt to smear a sitting President?"

Eh... fake facts? Does Rob know something we dont? I don't think so. The facts are that there was NO AFRICAN connection in Iraq. And the only thing fake was the "fixed," intelligence used to support the War in Iraq. Spin away boys, the Truth is out there, and I think after two years of LIES, it has finaly started to come out!

Update: Here's a new... eh make that old... spin on how to deal with an uncomfortable issue related to the administration... Point out how outrageous it is to talk about it while there is so much else going on in the world. Kinda like the Wizbang meme of "Nothing important here... move on people."

Un huh... Right.... I wonder what Mark thought of the thousands who died in Rwanda and The Balkans while Republicans obsessed over a blowjob? (Feel free to answer in comments Mark)

Posted by David A at 08:03 PM | Comments (9) | TrackBack (1) | 494 Words
I just love Lou Dobbs!

Transcript of todays show should be available within a couple of hours here. Make sure to read it. David Gergen, who sounds more and more like a Bush Administration apologist these days, went into full spin mode on the Karl Rove Plame Leak story. Dobbs cut him off mid-spin. The whole issue of conservatives splitting hairs over the Plame Leak makes me ill.
Lets put the legal issues aside for a moment here... It is not about whether ROVE knew Valerie Plame was an undercover operative, or whether he mentioned her name (That is probably the most ridiculous part of the story), it is about HONESTY, and Character. Bush said when the leak first broke two years ago that, "No one in his administration was responsible for the leak, and if they were they would be held accountable." Two years latter, with the irrefutable evidence on the table that Rove was one of the sources of the leak, the White House is suddenly mum!
Dobbs said it best, it is not about legal issues here, it is about honesty, and once again this administration has demonstrated that it has no concept of the word. While much of the Conservasphere continues to redefine Hypocrisy in the face of obvious wrongdoing...

And finaly the White House Press Corps starts to show some balls. It's about time.

The truth of the matter is that this administration is one that is built on decieving the American People. And no ammount of spin is going to change that. I never put the REALITY BASED COMMUNITY crap on my blog, but I am begining to understand why that idea is so important. I can't fathom how people allow political partisanship to just close their eyes to REALITY. These people are lying to us, they have been since day one, maybe BEFORE day one.

Some are worried about this issue distracting us from the fight over Downing Street. But as Shakespear's Sister says in this excellent post, this issue and lying about Iraq, are one and the same.

"Practically and factually, that issue is information manipulation and message control, and allowing ideologically-driven and designed propaganda to trump fact-based intelligence. Philosophically, that issue is a severe and appalling breech of ethics, most notably the betrayal of the trust of the American people."

What truly disgusts me is the continuing tendency to "put lipstick on a pig." Cause when it's all said and done, a pig is a pig. The only real solace I take from any of this, is that the truth will come out. The bigger the lie, the harder it is to conceal. The American People are slowly but surely getting wise to the truth, and it's a good thing.

Update (Relevant Portions of Dobbs Transcript)

DOBBS: White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan today faced tough questions among the White House press corps about the leak of a CIA agent's name two years ago. Reporters demanding to know whether presidential adviser Karl Rove was the source of that leak. But no answers were forthcoming from the White House.

Joining me now for more on these developments, the former presidential adviser, David Gergen, who served four presidents. David Gergen is professor at Harvard University's School of Government, joining us tonight from Cambridge.

Good to have you with us, David.


DOBBS: This is a remarkable shift over the course of the past 10 days. On July 1, Lawrence O'Donnell says Karl Rove is it. Now, Ambassador Joseph Wilson had said that nearly two years ago, but Lawrence O'Donnell's comments spurredr within 24 hours, reaction from Rove's attorney, and the issue was under way.

What do you make of it?

GERGEN: Well, Lou, I think that this is a complex case. And we shouldn't get caught up in our underwear so far.

DOBBS: We shouldn't get caught up, I'm sorry?

GERGEN: We shouldn't get caught up in our underwear about whether Karl Rove is in legal trouble.

DOBBS: Well, I don't think we -- I don't think we are.

GERGEN: I don't see -- well, I don't see what we know so far as indicating he's in legal trouble. There may be some political storm over this.

DOBBS: Right.

GERGEN: But what we know is that Karl Rove may have apparently told "TIME" magazine that Joe Wilson's wife, who worked at the agency, might have been behind his trip to Africa. That's not illegal on its face.

I mean, if he didn't disclose her name and didn't know her, didn't know that she was covert, there's no violation of the law. That is what he has publicly said.

DOBBS: Before we even -- I -- neither you nor I blessedly is an attorney. I'm not...

GERGEN: I'm a fallen attorney.

DOBBS: I am not particularly interested in the legal aspect of this so much right now...

GERGEN: Right.

DOBBS: ... as I am in both the politics, and frankly, the forthright, honest character of the people who make statements such as, it's ridiculous to suggest that Karl Rove was behind this. Ambassador Joe Wilson, the husband of Valerie Plame, the CIA operative named in the Novak column, said straightforwardly, within just about a week's time in 2003, just about two years ago, that it was Karl Rove. And the White House was dismissive, and is now saying things like, well, he didn't use her name.

We're hearing some parsing, aren't we?

GERGEN: Well, we are hearing some parsing, but, you know, the law and politics do turn on subtle distinctions. And it's one thing to say a guy's wife at the CIA has something to do with this; it's a totally different thing to out a covert agent. That's what the distinction here is.

Now, so -- so if he... DOBBS: But while you do say -- while you do say law and politics may be nuanced and turn on subtle distinctions...

GERGEN: Right.

DOBBS: ... character and judgment often have to be less than nuanced, have to be forthright and turn on basic principles. And the fact of the matter is, you have the most important adviser to the president of the United States talking to a reporter, or more reporters possibly, including Matthew Cooper of "Time" magazine. This is remarkable.

GERGEN: Well, Lou, I don't think it's all that remarkable. Listen, a lot of White Houses, you know, put stories out, and the question is whether Karl Rove did anything wrong. That's the basic question we're trying to ask. And in terms of telling somebody, hey, a guy's wife at the CIA might have been behind it, on its face, that's not wrong. If he put her name out and he knew she was a covert agent, that would be wrong.

Now, so in terms of what actually happened at the time, it's not clear to me at all that Karl Rove -- and I don't agree with a lot of his politics...

DOBBS: I don't mean -- again, I don't want you to have to defend Karl Rove here, because we're talking about what is obviously the appearance. What is concerning and what is troubling, at least to me, David, is, one, and lack of a forthright position on the part of the White House, did he or did he not, that's straightforward. Two, this investigation has now taken longer than Watergate, and it's not reached a conclusion. That in itself is remarkable. And thirdly, "New York Times," Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Judith Miller is sitting in jail tonight on this issue, and she never even reported it.

GERGEN: Look, the -- there is a scandal in this whole thing, and that is that Judith Miller is in jail on a story she never reported. That is ridiculous on its face, and that woman ought to be set free, because this has gone way beyond what is appropriate.

I mean, she never -- if she had reported on the story, it would be different. She's not even a party to the story, original story.

So I agree totally with you on that.

I also agree, Lou, that in the two years that have passed, the White House could and should have been much more forthright and candid on what happened, so we didn't need to go through this monkey business of all this lawsuit and having Judy Miller go to jail over it.

So I do think that what happened since that time is, you know, is subject to a lot of serious criticism, because the White House should have cleaned this thing up right from the beginning. We shouldn't have this kind of legal probe. We shouldn't have to go through all this funny business.

On that, I totally agree with you. But if there's something here that Karl Rove did wrong in the initial instance, I don't see it yet. Did he lie to the grand jury? There's no evidence of that. So I don't think he's in legal trouble, but your point about what's happened since then I think is well taken. And I agree with you. I especially agree with you about Judy Miller.

DOBBS: Well, let's hope that we can get to the bottom of this.

GERGEN: We should get to the bottom of it.

DOBBS: With two years of investigative work by federal prosecutors, it's remarkable that we can't seem to reach a conclusion here.

GERGEN: I agree with that. And Karl Rove has a responsibility to help get this out. I mean, now that his name's in the middle of it, I do think he should come forward and say, listen, this is what I did, here is what happened, here's all I know about it, and we're going to get the rest of this cleaned up. Somebody gave the name out. We know that. And we don't yet know who that is. And it's possible somebody lied to the grand jury, and we need to know that. But I do think Karl Rove has got a responsibility to Joe Wilson and to everybody else to help clear it up.

DOBBS: It's not even clear at this point who the heck sent Ambassador Joe Wilson to Niger.

GERGEN: That's true, too.

DOBBS: Thank you very much, David Gergen, always good to have you here.

GERGEN: Take care.

Italics mine, and I will say it again, Dobbs cut right through the B.S. and got to the heart of the matter.

Posted by David A at 03:43 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 1751 Words
July 10, 2005
Let the Spin Begin

The splitting hairs has already begun. But it is clear Karl Rove was involved at some level in outting Valerie Plame.

I love this from Shakespear's Sister:

His defense so far seems to be that he didn't say her name, just "Wilson's wife," and didn't know that she was undercover, just that she was CIA.

So, once again, we're being asked to rid ourselves of all common sense and logic to accept the administration's excuses. We are instead meant to believe that Karl Rove, an unapologetic political ideologue and opportunist, widely regarded as perhaps the dirtiest trickster in the business with a history of vengeful tactics against political opponents, and Bush's right hand man, a political advisor who ascended to a permanent position in the White House, affording him some senior level of security clearance, knew that "Wilson's wife" was a CIA operative, but didn't know that she was undercover and was talking to Cooper "to discourage Time from publishing things that turned out to be false," not to punish Wilson for reporting that the intelligence the administration was using to bolster their case for war was bullshit even though the Downing Street Memos have noted that they were fixing the intelligence around the policy. Forget Occam's Razor, which suggests that the most logical explanation is usually the right one, and instead grab with both hands the most convoluted explanation, which coincidentally exonerates Rove of all wrongdoing.

And Americablog asks some very relevant questions:

1. Whether he said "Valerie Plame" or "Wilson's wife" is irrelevant. It's the same thing, and if Bush tolerates this "definition of 'is'" garbage from Rove, well, then we really have a story.

2. Bush said he wanted to get to the bottom of this over a year ago. Why then did we have to waste all this money on a special prosecutor and a grand jury if Rove knew from day one that he was the guy who leaked Plame's identity? If Rove was so innocent, why didn't he just come forward immediately and say "yeah, it was me, but I didn't realize she was undercover"? Did he tell the president it was him? And if so, why didn't the president go public and put this investigation to an end? Or did Rove refuse the president's request and NOT come forward a year ago? And if so, what is he still doing working in the white House?

3. Perhaps it's legally relevant if Rove "knew" Plame was undercover or not, but it's not relevant in terms of him keeping his job. Rove intentionally outed a CIA agent working on WMD, it is irrelevant whether he did or didn't know if she was an undercover agent. First off, he knew she wasn't THAT public about her identity or there'd have been no need to "out" here - everyone would have known her already.

Second, the very fact that he appears to be claiming that he did NOT know about her undercover status is reason enough to fire him now. How dare the top political aide to the president out a CIA agent and not even think of checking whether she's undercover? I have worked before with CIA agents at several points in my career. The FIRST thing you learn is NOT to out them, period. If you don't know that they have some public CIA job, like spokesman, then you know from day one that you do NOT tell ANYONE who they are. It is totally unbelievable that Rove didn't know this simple fact about Washington - you don't tell people who is and who isn't CIA. Rove knew that, and he chose to out an agent working on WMD. The man should be fired.

Without doubt, the Wizbang piece will be just one of many to spin this story as a NON story. But it looks like Mr. Rove is the scumbag that most of us suspected him to be. Whether he will pay for that fact is doubtful.

Posted by David A at 12:37 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (2) | 665 Words
July 09, 2005
Is Judith Miller a Bush Administration Shill?

It sure looks like it, if we are to believe this:

[promoted by BooMan. Now, this is what I'm talking about. And I want a Safire exposure next]

The scenario sounds somehow familiar: in support of a somewhat loopy Republican president's campaign against an Arab dictator, Judith Miller was willing to plant official US disinformation in the New York Times.

The year was 1986.

Nine years into her tenure at the New York Times, she participated in John Poindexter's disinformation campaign against Libya for the Reagan administration. As Bob Woodward later revealed in the Washington Post, Miller planted Poindexter's propaganda in her own writings: claiming that el-Khadaffi was being betrayed from within his own country, that he had sunk into depression, and had turned to drugs. Miller went on to claim Khadaffi had tried to have sex with her, but lost interest when she claimed Jewish heritage.

Khadaffi, you'll remember, was the 80's Saddam Hussein (back when Saddam Hussein was still cool). Muammar was Reagan's "Mad Dog of the Middle East," which is kinda weird when you consider that Libya is in North Africa. As you'll see at the bottom of this article, there was no event on earth that Republicans would not attach to his name for the sake of justifying what they wanted to do in the region anyway. He was our blame-sink at that time. Other Muslims have since taken his place. It's all still the same game, and Judith has been playing it since the days of skinny ties and perms.

And so now, with the First Amendment drama playing out, a quick review of the material that's been building up on this woman for the last two years on the blogsphere reveals a much longer but very consistent career. Judith Miller has been and probably still is an informal asset not of our government but of an American political faction. From North Africa to the Mesopotamian, she has provided copy to support imperial adventures. Perhaps she thinks her powerful patrons will protect her, perhaps she knows too much, or perhaps she's just too old to start over and simply needs to protect her accustomed sources. Her access to them is what's made an otherwise utterly undistinguished career. If it weren't for her usefulness as a propaganda outlet, over three decades, she'd have no content at all.

Read the whole thing....

Posted by David A at 11:40 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0) | 396 Words
July 02, 2005
Was Rove the Leak on the Plame Affair?
"What we're going to go to now in the next stage, when Matt Cooper's e-mails, within Time Magazine, are handed over to the grand jury, the ultimate revelation, probably within the week of who his source is.

"And I know I'm going to get pulled into the grand jury for saying this but the source of...for Matt Cooper was Karl Rove, and that will be revealed in this document dump that Time magazine's going to do with the grand jury."

Lawrence O'Donnell,
Senior MSNBC Political Analyst

If he was there will be NO defending him...

Hat Tip News America Now

Posted by David A at 12:54 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 100 Words
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