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Traitorgate: Someone in the White House compromised security on purpose
by Bryan Zepp Jamieson
Zepps Commentaries

Back a few months ago, the story went around that the White House leaked the identity of a CIA operative, Valerie Plame, wife of United States Ambassador Joe Wilson, to Robert Novak, who subsequently published her name and her clandestine occupation in Time Magazine.

That much is known. At first, like so many stories involving malfeasance by this administration, it seemed destined to die of neglect by the press and apathy by the public.

But in late August, word went around that the revelation of Plame's career had resulted in the "liquidation of seventy of her assets," a statement I take to mean that 70 of her sources were killed.

The story developed legs, especially since the former ambassador, Joe Wilson, specifically named top admin official Karl Rove as being the party who leaked the story. At a public meeting in late August, this career diplomat stated flatly, "It's of keen interest to me to see whether or not we can get Karl Rove frogmarched out of the White House in handcuffs. And trust me, when I use that name, I measure my words."

There are two types of American ambassadors. There are the career ambassadors, ones carefully trained in making each word, each phrase, mean exactly what they want it to mean, no matter how it might sound to a less astute listener. Then there's the political appointee ambassador, and while there are many who are worthy of the title, the most prevalent type tends to come up with lines to their hosts like, "Don't any of you monkeys speak Amuurkin?" or "How much is that in REAL money?"

Joe Wilson was a career diplomat. He doesn't go off half-cocked and make idiotic, uninformed, or careless public statements. So I believe him when he says, "I measure my words."

In a nutshell, Wilson was sent in 2002 to investigate claims that Iraq was negotiating to buy "yellowcake" -- a low level form of uranium powder -- from the nation of Niger. He investigated, and found that the story had no basis in reality.

Wilson subsequently brought about the first major embarrassment to Putsch by publically contradicting his SOTU claim that Saddam Hussein was trying to buy radioactives from Niger. Putsch was massively embarrassed over the "yellowcake from Niger" thing, especially since tens of millions of people watched him make the claim in the SOTU, and here was an ambassador gainsaying him and stating flatly that he had advised the White House several months before that there was nothing to the story. It marked the first instance where the press wasn't just being his little lap dog. Even Faux News couldn't pretend Putsch hadn't made the claim or that Wilson wasn't a reputable source.

Now, one of the more chilling aspects of this particular White House is that it is perhaps the most regimented and authoritarian in American history. Nothing gets said by anyone at any level in the White House without the consent of the top people. Peggy Noonan, effusive praise- singer of all things Republican, crowed a few months ago, "they leak what Mr. Bush wants leaked." She thought this was a pretty good thing.

So Robert Novak wound up writing in Time Magazine, "[Joe] Wilson never worked for the CIA, but his wife, Valerie Plame, is an Agency operative on weapons of mass destruction. Two senior administration officials told me Wilson's wife suggested sending him to Niger to investigate the Italian report. The CIA says its counter-proliferation officials selected Wilson and asked his wife to contact him. îI will not answer any question about my wife,' Wilson told me."

Novak obviously got the story from the admin, -- he states he got it from "two senior administration officials" -- and it's claimed the admin tried to feed it to a half-dozen other reporters. The message the admin wanted to send out was obvious enough: do something to embarrass us, and we'll put you and your family at risk. Anyone else want to publically contradict and embarrass the President?

Two senior administration officials, who had to know that publically disclosing the name of an agency operative was a felony, punishable by ten years and a $50,000 fine. They even signed a pledge acknowledging their awareness of this law. This admin cracks a mean whip.

The thing to understand about Novak is that he is among the lowest of the pseudo journalistic right. He's a waterboy for the GOP, nothing more. A report on talkingpointsmemo.com stated: "In a January 2003 feature for Esquire, Ron Suskind wrote: 'Sources close to [George Bush Sr.] say Karl Rove was fired from the 1992 Bush presidential campaign after he planted a negative story with columnist Robert Novak about dissatisfaction with campaign fundraising chief and Bush loyalist Robert Mosbacher Jr. It was smoked out, and he was summarily ousted."'

Rove doesn't mind playing hatchetman. In fact, he's reputed to enjoy it. And Novak doesn't mind smearing people when Rove wants him to. It appears he doesn't even mind getting Americans killed in the line of duty if that's what his contacts in the White House want.

Novak identifies Plame as "an agency operative." NOT an "agency employee." Operative. That's the word he used, and if he knows anything at all, then he knows the admin officials, at the very least, were committing a felony by outing her to him. Novak might be a shabby journalist, but he isn't stupid. He had to understand the ramifications of what he was being told.

It's interesting to note that it's being claimed that the administration tried to leak the Plame story to six other reporters with Time, CNN, Fox and other reliably pro-admin outlets, and none of the others went with the story. Novak, however, did.

Novak, who probably didn't commit a crime by reporting what he was told, and will doubtlessly plead first amendment rights to conceal his sources, was nonetheless backtracking in an interview on Crossfire the other day. He said, "Nobody in the Bush administration called me to leak this. In July I was interviewing a senior administration official on Ambassador Wilson's report when he told me the trip was inspired by his wife, a CIA employee working on weapons of mass destruction."

Compare that with what talkingpointsmemo.com quoted him as saying about that same story back in July: "Novak, in an interview, said his sources had come to him with the information. 'I didn't dig it out, it was given to me,' he said. 'They thought it was significant, they gave me the name and I used it.'"

In other words, Novak, waterboy for this administration in general and Karl Rove in particular, is trying to lessen the gravity of the offence, by pretending it was a careless remark that slipped out that he, for some odd reason, didn't ignore the way he ignores anything else that might put the administration on the hot seat. Strange behavior for a Putsch apologist who understands what the law says about outing agency operatives.

Novak is a sleazy journalist and is a self-evident liar. Unfortunately, the truth of what actually occurred in this tawdry affair is known only to him, and he has Constitutional protection against revealing his sources.

But Novak is hiding the actions of traitors in the White House.

Novak is anti-American scum.

"Even though I'm a tranquil guy now at this stage of my life, 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, 1999

-- 'A people living under the perpetual menace of war and invasion is very easy to govern. It demands no social reforms. It does not haggle over expenditures on armaments and military equipment. It pays without discussion, it ruins itself, and that is an excellent thing for the syndicates of financiers and manufacturers for whom patriotic terrors are an abundant source of gain.' --Anatole France

Not dead, in jail, or a slave? Thank a liberal! Pay your taxes so the rich don't have to. For the finest in liberal/leftist commentary, visit zepps commentaries.

October 1, 2003


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