31 May 2008

Plame again

I thought I was done with my little obsession with l'affaire Plame, in which the White House retaliated against Joseph Wilson for calling bullshit on their claims of an Iraqi nuclear weapons program by blowing the cover of his CIA spook wife, Valerie Plame Wilson, through White House aide Scooter Libby.

The trail went cold when President Bush commuted Libby's sentence for his participation ... and unwillingness to testify about who was involved. It seemed that we would never know exactly how Bush and Cheney were involved, though we have good evidence that Cheney gave the order to Libby. That commutation of the sentence should have been grounds for impeachment—since it was the President using his pardoning power to protect himself—but you know how it goes.

I thought that was that, but now, via DeLong, I learn that Marcy Wheeler at Emptywheel just caught Scott McClellan, former White House Press Secretary, revealing something important.

I learned that the President had secretly declassified the National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq for the Vice President and Scooter Libby to anonymously disclose to reporters .... I walk onto Air Force One and a reporter had yelled a question to the President trying to ask him a question about this revelation that had come out during the legal proceedings. The revelation was that it was the President who had authorized, or, enable Scooter Libby to go out there and talk about this information. And I told the President that that's what the reporter was asking. He was saying that you, yourself, was the one that authorized the leaking of this information. And he said “yeah, I did.” And I was kinda taken aback.
I'm kinda taken aback too. This is slippery, since it's in the context of talking about the leak of the National Intelligence Estimate. But. We know that Libby leaked both the NIE and Plame's identity to journalist Judy Miller at the same time. It's not hard to connect the dots and conclude that the President of the United States authorized his lieutenants to blow the cover of an American spy who was working to prevent nuclear proliferation.


TheWayOfTheGun said...

"Secretly" and "declassified" are two words that do not belong next to one another in the same sentence. My love of the absurd is often satisfied by this administration. I only wish it were not at the expense of my love of country.

Kate said...

I so believe McClellan! Is it too late to do something? Just having GWB leave office in January is NOT enough!