No-One Could Have Anticipated…

6 comments March 16th, 2007at 11:44am Posted by Eli

Valerie Plame testifies, Republicans continue to make excuses:

Rep. Tom Davis of Virginia, the ranking Republican on the committee, said that since Fitzgerald didn’t charge anyone with the leak, the hearings were unlikely to add any insight.

”No process can be adopted to protect classified information that no one knows is classified,” Davis said. ”This looks to me more like a CIA problem than a White House problem.”

Really. How about this, for starters: Make it a crime to reveal a CIA employee’s identity without affirmative confirmation that they are not covert? The law as currently constructed affords carte blanche to out as many CIA agents as you want, so long as you have plausible deniability that you didn’t know they were covert. That is inexcusably sloppy protection for people risking their necks, and the Bush administration cynically took advantage of it.

Congress must amend the law to protect the agents instead of the leakers.

Entry Filed under: Libby/Plame,Republicans,Wankers

6 Comments

  • 1. charley  |  March 16th, 2007 at 5:37 pm

    i watched that thing today.

    that victoria is a real freak’n head case.

    i don’t think it matters about the law, common decency would dictate you don’t out a dedicated public servant who could risk severe detriment… not to mention the national security implications.

    support our troops my ass. to paraphrase that ugly witch, lynne cheney, “these are horrible people.”

  • 2. Eli  |  March 16th, 2007 at 7:05 pm

    I think the Bushies have pretty conclusively demonstrated that “common decency” is not a barrier to *anything*.

    The law needs to be tighter, so that horrible people can actually be punished. Think of it, Libby, Rove, Fleischer, Armitage, and I think Bartlett would *all* be facing time, and Cheney would probably be in trouble as the mastermind behind it all.

  • 3. charley  |  March 16th, 2007 at 10:15 pm

    well, something is awry with the system, to be sure.

    because none of this was a mystery in 04, and they still got back in.

    who is Bartless?

  • 4. Eli  |  March 16th, 2007 at 11:10 pm

    Um, Dan Bartlett.

    Fixed now…

  • 5. Beltway Progressive  |  March 17th, 2007 at 12:30 am

    The memo Scooter Libby and Robert Novak used to leak her is clearly CLASSIFIED. This version has been redacted and is unclassified but you can see the SECRET designation for the original on the bottom here.

    She was an ambassador’s wife – she had access to high level informants whether she traveled with the foreign service or “just” traveled with her husband. In fact, I heard a CIA executive say on NPR that ambassador’s wives used to be a great source of info – but now after this, no one will talk to them. This valuable source of info dried up.

    She was in the “counter-proliferation” division at CIA – that prevents WMDs. She was covert. Davis is lying. Again.

  • 6. Eli  |  March 17th, 2007 at 12:40 am

    There is no question in my mind that she was covert. The question is whether the Bushies have plausible deniability that they *knew* she was covert. That memo may be classified as secret, but it doesn’t specify that Plame was covert. They can say that the reference to her as a “WMD Manager” caused them to think she just sat at a desk and moved operatives around.

    However, there was more than ample reason for anyone who actually gave a shit about national security to say, Hey, maybe we should double-check to make sure “the wife” isn’t involved in anything sensitive before we just throw her name out there.

    My belief is that they were probably pretty sure that she was covert, and consciously decided *not* to confirm it so that they would not technically be breaking the law, and so that they wouldn’t have to worry about someone testifying that they confirmed her covert status before they went ahead and outed her anyway.


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