Wednesday, July 13, 2005

The Plame affair - talking points

Raw Story has posted the RNC Talking Points on the Rove/Wilson/Plame affair.
It is amusing to see who in the media, especially allegedly independent pundits, parrot such talking points verbatim.

However, one point struck me:

"Vice President Cheney: I don't know Joe Wilson. I've never met Joe Wilson ..."

Now, Joe Wilson was the head of the US embassy (Deputy Chief of Mission) in Baghdad in 1991. When Cheney was Secretary of Defense, and a minor military affair involving the US and Iraq took place. I suspect Wilson's name would have crossed Cheney's desk on some occasions.
I'm really quite surprised that Cheney does not remember. Maybe he is not a "details" person. after all he had forgotten about meeting Senator Edwards as well, shortly after having had breakfast with him.
Shame. Maybe some condition that is affecting long term memory.

There is much punditry on whether "everyone knew" about Valerie Plame's (PSU alumn!) position at the CIA, and whether even a crime was committed at all (if not, why did Rove not speak out publicly and say what the talking points are trying to point to now? Would have saved a lot of bother).

But, this misses an essential point - Plame was a no-cover agent; she is now blown, and anyone she associated with over a period of a decade is suspect. That is a fatal sort of suspicion to be under in some of the places she apparently worked.

Secondly, the idiot talking head Novak, also outed her employers, which was a CIA front. Now everyone who ever traveled abroad and listed that company as an employer or business contact is also blown. I don't know how big an operation it was, but you don't set up and maintain a company like that for one person who has been rotated to in-house operation for several years, as Plame apparently had.

So Novak, and the treasonous git who leaked the info to him, exposed an entire agency operation, destroying 10-20 years worth of deniable cover and groundwork. And one apparently aimed at tracking WMDs.

Words can not describe how unforgivably bad this was.
The people defending the administration on this issue are in very severe denial.

Or, more eloquently, what he said - ex-CIA agent Larry Johnson on TPMcafe.

Oh, and kos has Wilson's refutation of the talking points - the "addendum by a couple of senators to the intelligence committee report is a neat trick. Basically have someone on the committee add any old crap to a report as an unsupported appendix, and then cite it later as "the report says...".

PS from kos citing a Jeff Gannon interview with Wilson: "When I came back to Washington and was introduced to the war cabinet, President Bush introduced me as a true American hero, and I take great pride in that." - the Secretary of Defence, Dick Cheney, was hopefully part of GHW Bush's war cabinet. I guess he's just not a "people person", hard time matching names and faces after introductions.


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