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September 29, 2003

The Remaining B.O.D

Sgt. Stryker gives a paragraph that injects reasonable doubt into the illegality of the outing of Plame. That, however does not diminish the venality of the act.

But, was the CIA (and hence the United States) "taking affirmative measures to conceal" Valerie Plame's " intelligence relationship to the United States"? I submit to you that if the CIA is verifying her employment to Bob Novak and if Clifford May and Josh Marshall had no problem verifying it, then it's kinda hard to make the case that "affirmative measures" were taken. What you have to understand is this: if Valerie Plame was a covert agent, and if someone in the Bush Administration leaked that to Bob Novak, the real damage wasn't done until the CIA confirmed the relationship to Novak. If the CIA had denied or even given the old "we can neither confirm nor deny" spiel to Novak he wouldn't have had half the story he did. So, one could argure that by requesting a Justice Department review George Tennant is trying to deflect the fact that his agency is just as at fault.

Where's my Bush quote on Character? Somebody better fess up. Some head better roll.

There seem to be a lot of clever ways out of this mess, and I am inclined to believe that unless there is a straight-out battle between CIA and the White House, and maybe still if there is we may never get to the bottom. I think I'd be satisfied with a strong statement from the White House, but I doubt that I'm going to get one. Considering how long it took for GW to own up to the 16 words, what will last longer is the perception of cagey politics rather than smart policy. Since when has Karl Rove been a surprise.

Palace intrigue.

Posted by mbowen at September 29, 2003 11:14 PM

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