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Tuesday, September 30, 2003


Much Ado About Nothing

To hear the media tell it, you'd think Valerie Plame was a deep-cover, 007-style CIA agent, in danger of life and limb every moment, traveling the globe to make the world safe for Mom, apple pie, and the American way until she was "outted" by poltical thugs working at the White House.

All this over a couple sentences in a syndicated opinion piece by Robert Novak entitled, "Mission to Niger":

Wilson never worked for the CIA, but his wife, Valerie Plame, is an Agency operative on weapons of mass destruction. Two senior administration officials told me Wilson's wife suggested sending him to Niger to investigate the Italian report.

Liberals have glommed onto this as "proof" that senior White House officials exposed Plame as a "covert CIA agent," jeopardized hundreds of lives and effectively ended her career. Horsepuckey. Anyone who has lived for any length of time in the D.C Metro area knows you can't swing a dead cat without hitting someone who works for some hush-hush government agency. I myself have held the resume of a man who was at one time an Assistant Director of Operations for Army Intelligence in what was then East Germany. The identification of Ms. Plame as an employee of the CIA is about as detrimental to national security or her career as it was for Sean Connery to play James Bond in the movies.

Liberals are all in a tizzy over the supposed disclosure of Ms. Plame's employer, yet seem to forget Mr. Novak is a syndicated columnist. His column ran without a problem in July in many of the same newspapers now harrumphing over this "security breach." Aren't those newspapers at least complicit in the crime if one were committed?

The real story here is Joseph Wilson and his left-wing liberal leanings. A former Clinton administration official, it was his wife, Ms. Plame, who suggested he be sent by the CIA to track down rumors of attempts by Iraq to purchase nuclear material from Niger. Mr. Novak's column, as well as one run three days prior in NRO by Clifford May, both questioned why such a liberal extremist was given the assignment. In fact, Mr. May admits in his piece that he, too, was aware of Ms. Plame's employer:

On July 11, I wrote a piece for NRO arguing that Mr. Wilson had no basis for that conclusion - and that his political leanings and associations (not disclosed by the Times and others journalists interviewing him) cast serious doubt on his objectivity.

On July 14, Robert Novak wrote a column in the Post and other newspapers naming Mr. Wilson's wife, Valerie Plame, as a CIA operative.

That wasn't news to me. I had been told that - but not by anyone working in the White House. Rather, I learned it from someone who formerly worked in the government and he mentioned it in an offhanded manner, leading me to infer it was something that insiders were well aware of.

The righteous indigation of Wilson and liberals is merely an attempt to deflect any in-depth analysis of his political biases and incompetence in his supposed investigation in Niger. If Mr. Wilson wants to assign blame for the "outing" of his wife, he should begin with himself. Bob Novak's piece was published on July 14. On July 6, Wilson wrote an op-ed for the New York Times naming himself as the one who investigated the supposed Niger connection in February 2002 and found it wanting. Had he not engaged in his own spiteful pettiness, Novak would never have written his piece in the Sun-Times. Wilson himself outted his own actions, causing many to wonder and investigate why such a political hack woul get such a sensitive assignment. It only makes sense that when his credibility began to unravel that aspersions and accusations of wrongdoing must be leveled at the messenger and the White House in an attempt to deflect serious scrutiny of Wilson's own record of incometence and political left-leaning.

"Today's report confirms that, despite White House scare tactics, Social Security remains sound for decades to come.."

-? Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid (NV) upon hearing reports that the Social Security and Medicare Trust Funds will go bankrupt even earlier than predicted.

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