1. Anonymous says:

    This may be helpful in the short term to the ’wingers, stanching the bleeding after the indictments come out. But it won’t do Scooter even a tiny little bit of good in court, where the prosecutor is free to hammer home the details to a captive audience. And of course, it would only help him with IIPA charges, not espionage; conspiracy; obstruction; or any of the other good stuff Scooter’s up against.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Even with IIPA charges, Libby still has to convince a jury that this isn’t a backfilled cover story.

    An if it’s true that Libby really did think she was DI and not DO, it’s both shockingly bad form for a high-level aide not to double check her status when she’s working in what was ostensibly an area of critical importance to the â€administration,†and probably pretty good evidence for Fitzgerald’s wider-ranging probe into the systematic rigging of intelligence and the destruction of the existing intelligence infrastructure.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Kagro,this is more of the â€are they just incompetent or are they evil†debate. A lose-lose for the WH.

  4. Anonymous says:

    I think your analysis of her â€dual†status is correct. Valerie married and had twins. At that point she was shifting to working at Langley rather than in the field, but she still had contacts and occasional assignments in the field. And WINPAC does seem to have been a loose organization of people from different parts of the agency.

    There are some interesting tidbits in this WaPo story. The story says that early on Fitz’s office was told about the conflicts between Cheney’s office and the CIA.

    Two items stand out. First, â€one former CIA official told prosecutors early in the probe about efforts by Cheney’s office and his allies at the [NSC] to obtain information about Wilson’s trip as long as two months before Plame was unmasked in July 2003, according to a person familiar with the account.â€

    And later in the article: â€A former CIA official told investigators that Cheney’s office was seeking information about Wilson in May 2003, but it’s not certain that officials with the vice president learned of the Plame connection then.†This second reference is not sourced, and reflects the line emanating from the VP’s office, or at least Libby’s camp.

    But Libby was the one who went over to the CIA to press them about WMD intel. He had to have more than a passing familiarity with the organization and the people who worked there. Put this together with Hersh’s â€stovepipe†article. There has definitely been CIA pushback here, and we still don’t know how much was in the CIA’s original referral. Clearly, Tenet and/or his people are exacting their revenge.

    I think Libby is akmost certain to be indicted. Cheney at most would be an unindicted co-conspirator. As for the rest of WHIG, it depends on who talked and how early in the game.

    And on the aspens–Laura Rozen, probably the only person ever to have actually read Libby’s novel, said in a column right after the letter became public that that florid style is how he writes. I do think there was a bit of a message in there, but maybe not as much as some speculations. Maybe he’s just a weird guy.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Great detective work on Fleitz, Bolton, and Plame. I agree that Cannistraro would know about Plame’s status and the ’anonymous sources’ most likely include Luskin trying to spin. One thing though the Mike Allen WaPo article came up with only the headline without the body of the article, it seems to be unavailable. Do you have another link for the article? I would love to read it again.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Great detective work on Fleitz, Bolton, and Plame. I agree that Cannistraro would know about Plame’s status and the ’anonymous sources’ most likely include Luskin trying to spin. One thing though the Mike Allen WaPo article came up with only the headline without the body of the article, it seems to be unavailable. Do you have another link for the article? I would love to read it again.

  7. Anonymous says:

    The original CIA referral (among other things) makes it clear that Plame was covert. There is significant evidence that she was covert in DO. The issue of whether she worked for WINPAC or not then becomes moot because if WINPAC had covert operatives from other divisions (DO included) working there part time, it didn’t make them any less covert. Their cover obviously could not have changed just because they helped out at WINPAC. What it does mean is that not everyone who worked for WINPAC was necessarily â€overtâ€.

    So, to sum up. I don’t see Fitzgerald having wasted 2 years without establishing that Plame was covert. Since she was covert, whether or not she worked at WINPAC made no difference. Which means that working at WINPAC does not mean you lose your cover or that you become â€overtâ€. Which means that Libby doesn’t have a prayer with this latest spin.

    There’s also a bigger issue here. The fact that *Plame worked for the CIA* was THE secret. Not her name or her relationship to Wilson or any other BS that the jokers on the Far Right pull out of their ***** on a given day. No one outside of classified circles knew she was working in the CIA. That means, regardless of where she worked in the CIA, she was covert.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Sheesh, I have to do everybody’s fact-checking for them.

    Newsday, July 22, 2003:

    A senior intelligence official confirmed that Plame was a Directorate of Operations undercover officer who worked â€alongside†the operations officers who asked her husband to travel to Niger.

    In other words, on the organizational chart she’s in the Directorate of Operations, but her actual desk was with the analysts — which would make it easy for someone who didn’t know the org chart to assume she was an analyst, too.

  9. Anonymous says:

    What timing. I was going to post a link back to swopa with more about that GOPUSA â€article†from yesterday:
    Right here. Cliff Kincaid. What a guy!

  10. Anonymous says:

    Perhaps Judith copied her original notebook from June of 2003 while adding and deleting from her original notes. It would be interesting to see the Fitzgerald’s forensic analysis report of the June notes which she â€foundâ€. What if the paper on which the notes were written had not been manufactured until after 2003, the same for the ink as well as the time since the ink was applied to the paper, was it recently applied or does it have a consistency of ink which was applied in 2003? Do Judith’s June notes contain a watermark which indicates the date of manufacture of the paper?

  11. Anonymous says:

    I should’ve guessed! Back when I was saying that Watergate taught us that the indictments go to alliterative names — Howard Hunt, Fred Fleitz — and people with first initials and rhyming names — G. Gordon Liddy, I. Lewis Libby — we should have figured out that â€Johns†always flip.

  12. Anonymous says:

    BUSH’s Born aGAIN SCAM??


    We all know that what is called the democratic or rep. party is really just a lose federation of groups that may or may have competing goals. This is seen on the DNC web site that lists various interest groups and not much on core values… It is also seen on the right.

    That said, real vaules can be deduced by one’s actions. MY HAT goes off the ROVE/BUSH, and cast… on defining BUSH as a borm again christian. THIS allowed Bush’s past behavior to be ignored since he had been saved. IT also gave them leaway to attach others that did not have this get out of jail free card… a TRUELY amazing coop.

  13. Anonymous says:

    TalkLeft on the stakes:

    This is the week that all of the subjects facing Indictment will be faced with their â€come to Jesus†moment. Spouses will be telling them to cut their losses and think of the family. They will be forced to juxtapose their loyalty to the Administration with their loyalty to their families and their interest in self-preservation.

    My experience tells me that only those who truly believe they are innocent — and those whom Fitzgerald advises are looking at felonies and jail time even with a deal — will hold out.

    Update: The Velvet Revolution computes the guidelines and says life in prison is possible for RoveGaters.

  14. Anonymous says:

    As ever with this bloody war, the Brits are the clue.
    Do you remember what happened with David Kelly? At exactly the same time?

    When Campbell and Blair wanted to â€out†Kelly they played a game with the press. They gave out enough clues for an educated pundit to narrow the field down to a few names. They then said they would confirm the name if any journalist found it. Richard Norton-Taylor guessed three, and the third was David Kelly.

    The plame conspirators were facing the identical situation across the water. They wanted to get a name into the public domain. But unlike Kelly, Plame had committed no infraction. So they went about it in a different way.

    They broke the basic information down into pieces and gave different pieces to different people at different times. They put in some slight variations of the name and exactly what she did in order to cover themselves against the IIPA. But they knew these people gossip, and they knew there were enough clues that only an idiot would fail to work it out.

  15. Anonymous says:

    After the indictments, no, scratch that, after the trial(s), I hope that everyone who has been saying THIS is what happened and WHY will go back over all their posts for the past two years and claim credit for when they were right and ’fess up to when they were wrong.

    This doesn’t apply to those like my blogmate, emptywheel, whose public comments are always couched in the conditional voice, but rather to those folks who put every TraitorGate speculation they make into concrete, then, when new evidence comes to light casually move on to their next certainty without so much as a nod in the direction of their past error.

  16. Anonymous says:

    MB, not just bloggers. Nadagate writers like Tierney, Cohen etc are right up at the top of the list. If they don’t do it, someone else will.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Cohen will just explain that whatever he wrote back then he didn’t really mean it. He felt the opposite way the whole time.

  18. Anonymous says:


    I don’t understand that passage. It ALL says Plame was covert.

    A senior intelligence official confirmed that Plame was a Directorate of Operations undercover officer [that is, she worked in DO, the covert side] who worked â€alongside†the operations officers [that is, the people who made the decision were ALSO DO, that is covert–and we knew this from SSCI] who asked her husband to travel to Niger.

    In other words, it says repeatedly that she’s DO. That passage doesn’t mention analysts at all.

  19. Anonymous says:

    It is measured public speech we are seeing now, as E appropriately observes; divide the charges, lessen the seriousness of the multiple likely charges; and who knows how wide a camouflage cover KR provided in four hours of testimony Friday.
    Although a pastorale is nice, it is wonderful E has located squirrel powered internet during this time.
    Sunday’s articles in the NY Times notably lacked the anticipated report by Jehl on the embed timeframe. The Judy self-authored with her attorneys article, and the Times duo interview of Judy with text approved by NY Times attorneys were a bit stilted as journalistic prose goes, though quaint enough. There remained for me a gothic overtone to Judy’s description in carefully selected phrasing about its being impossible behind bars for her to have a telephone call personally from Libby, so she could testify, rather, the arrangement had to include conferencing in of each’s attorney; some reminiscence about the rodeo chance encounter that would have been.

  20. Anonymous says:


    I understand your confusion — I assumed that the latter â€operations officers†was a flubbed way of talking about the WINPAC analysts, since saying â€alongside†(and quoting it, all by itself) makes no sense unless Plame was working with people outside her native department. I didn’t know what was in the SSCI, and if I’m lucky I’ll never have to.

    Also, Jeralyn Merritt says Plame’s boss was Alan Foley of WINPAC, which would make sense if she was â€on loan†or otherwise assigned indefinitely there — which would mean she was working in the midst of analysts.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Sorry Swopa, I forgot it was eRiposte who trodded through the damn thing, and not you. It’s fun, if you consider it fiction, which is probably close to right.

    I take it as saying they’re DO officers. The SSCI is clear that Counter Proliferation in DO was the organization behind inviting Wilson. And it appears, at least, that that is Plame’s primary affiliation.

    There have been a number of assertions that Foley was Plame’s boss. I’ve never seen any SOURCING to that claim. It’d be interesting if true, because Foley is either a giant space cadet or a willing idiot for Fleitz and Bolton.

  22. Anonymous says:

    Key question: we’re breathless about indictments, but how is it possible that any of this will go to a public trial? Won’t the DC Circuit accept the Bushies’ inevitable argument that any trial would compromise vital national security secrets and thus endanger America? Wouldn’t the Roberts SCOTUS uphold the DC circuit and refuse to hear the case? Isn’t the fix in? Or if Bush issues blanket pardons with the explanation that any trial would compromise national secrets and make us less safe, are there enough honest Republicans to prevent him from getting away with it?

  23. Anonymous says:


    In any case, the Wilsons can sue (and appear to be moving to do that right now, presumably to make blanket pardons less sweet for BushCo). So there’s no way they can avoid a trial on this, whether it’s criminal or civil.

  24. Anonymous says:

    For some years there have been well established means for using highly classified materials in trials. The process of selecting a jury involves vetting selectees for the pool, and in DC that usually means people who have current security classifications, or retired people who can quickly update theirs, tend to populate the pool. This is why I think the trial jury will be dominated by retired mid-level civil servants.

    Usually the Judge reviews all classified evidence, and makes the precise rules for when and how it can be introduced. Things like clearing the courtroom are normal, and ducuments are circulated, and then retained by the Judge. Judges have been known to declassify overly classified materials (a ruse if you don’t want something known is to ovely classify it). Usually CIA hates trials because of their fear they will reveal sources and methods — but I suspect the CIA will be the cheering section on this one.

    As to providing the Jury with the CIA organizational chart as relevant to this case — I suspect they will have George Tenet as a cooperating witness, and I expect he has provided Fitzgerald with all he needs to know about organization. He was, afterall, DCIA.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Updates across town: Editor and publisher has the pre-testimony published text of Judy’s Judiciary Committee comments today, which mentions two unpublished stories in the Cleveland Plain Dealer, ostensibly about Plame, though vague language is used; my understanding was her unpublished story was unpublished in NYT not unpublished in CPD; may be unrelated entirely, merely an imprecise rhetorical point in her argument in favor of federal shield; funny moment when DoJustice could not agree with itself on whether to leave reporters’ rights uncodified and let DoJ take care of matters. Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press is going on about the DC court slipping thru a fast one and letting the anthrax libel suit return to life to hound NYT in one more appeals forum, ostensibly Supreme Court; wierd skirmish; NYT is a large company but still has great value institutionally; it’s a pity to see it beleagered by this on a 6-6 split decision. RCFP’s site is replete with a lot of links and summaries of how new adjudication is handling matters related to secrets; Byzantine. These thoughts follow the thread but we began with some important hair-splitting about right to know versus espionage regs transgression.

  26. Anonymous says:

    Going to try to embed a link, no pun intended, re: full text in E+P of Judy’s fed shield speech US Sen Judic Committee yesterday, reference to 2 unpublished articles about what she does not say in Cleveland Plain Dealer (NB her observation WY is only state lacking a state shield for reporters); and re: bizarre libel suit vs. NY Times, that venerable news organization, wonder if Judy knows him longterm; [DC court split 6-6 effectively sending NYT to SCOTUS if NYT continues to seek exoneration; too complicated a case to sort out, as it is one of nearly a dozen launched by appellant against many media organizations; kind of re-creates the ambience of those turbulent times.