Tuesday, February 07, 2006

The CIA Leak: Plame Was Still Covert

Feb. 13, 2006 issue - Newly released court papers could put holes in the defense of Dick Cheney's former chief of staff, I. Lewis (Scooter) Libby, in the Valerie Plame leak case. Lawyers for Libby, and White House allies, have repeatedly questioned whether Plame, the wife of White House critic Joe Wilson, really had covert status when she was outed to the media in July 2003. But special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald found that Plame had indeed done "covert work overseas" on counterproliferation matters in the past five years, and the CIA "was making specific efforts to conceal" her identity, according to newly released portions of a judge's opinion.


So now Sean Hannity and the rest of them will put that lie to rest, right? Did anyone really think that the CIA would have referred this matter for prosecution if Plame did not meet the standards of the statute? Valerie Plame was a covert operative and her status was betrayed by officials at the highest level of the Bush administration. The fact that Karl Rove still has a security clearance is a travesty.

Larry Johnson, whose background is with the CIA and the State Department’s Office of Counter Terrorism has this to say:

This much I do know. The CIA, as matter of standard operating procedure, conducted a prelimnary damage assessment once Valerie's identity was publicly compromised. Human intelligence assets who had worked under Valerie's direction were damaged. Their lives were put at risk (I don't know if anyone died) and their ability to serve as clandestine assets reporting to the United States was destroyed. Remember, Valerie was working on projects to identify terrorists and criminals who were trying to procure weapons of mass destruction. Part of this information was the basis for the referral to the Justice Department in September 2003 to investigate this as a violation of the Intelligence Identities Protection Act.

Regardless of whether Fitzgerald can prosecute an Intelligence Identities Protection case, this much is clear--people who work for President Bush knowingly compromised an intelligence officer's identity. What is truly shameful are the prominent Republicans who are raising funds for Libby's defense fund. They are endorsing an act of treason and excusing it for political expediency. That may not be a crime, but it is wrong.



Post a Comment

<< Home

Site Meter Blog Directory Anti-Bush Newsgroup Blogarama - The Blog Directory