Nov 12 2005

The Whole Plame Thing

Published by at 2:05 pm under All General Discussions,Plame Game

Time for a major Plame update and some synthesizing of revelations from sources far and wide.

I want to start out with Tom Maguire’s recent post on Andrea Mitchell’s equivocations. While it may seem somewhat pathetic, it also may not bode well for someone. I have never learned whether Mitchell testified to Fitzgerald, but I hope for her sake she didn’t. Her pathetic attempt to recast her comment to the post Novak article time frame is ridiculous. From Tom’s site we have a fuller read of the flow of discussions at the time Mitchell confessed about how many reporters knew about Val’s CIA gig [emphasis mine]:

MURRAY: Andrea, a couple of quick questions. One, you said something earlier that I wasn’t sure about. Bob Novak reported that two administration officials told him this. Are we any closer to having any idea who those two people are?

MITCHELL: No. And you know, there’s a lot of rumor. There’s been denials from the White House. [more on Rove, etc – but sets the initial context of who leaked to Novak]

MURRAY And the second question is: Do we have any idea how widely known it was in Washington that Joe Wilson’s wife worked for the CIA?

MITCHELL: It was widely known among those of us who cover the intelligence community and who were actively engaged in trying to track down who among the foreign service community was the envoy to Niger. So a number of us began to pick up on that. But frankly I wasn’t aware of her actual role at the CIA and the fact that she had a covert role involving weapons of mass destruction, not until Bob Novak wrote it.

I want to focus on something a bit different than Tom did. Andrea is clearly, and without any doubt, saying she knew Valerie worked at the CIA – just no her specific role (read job) at the CIA and a WMD analyst until Novak’s article. Her lame attempt to change the record will not fly. I am hoping she is trying to reconcile a denial proof any pre-Novak knowledge she made to the investigators, which would obviously conflict. My fear is she is attempting a cover up of the press under pressure by her management.

Tom has the complete Alan Murray, Gloria Borger, Andrea Mitchell transcript form Oct 3, 2003. And I found this item from Andrea of interest:

MITCHELL: They are. They are trying to narrow the focus of the investigation, and try to wrap it up as quickly as possible. And truth be told that if they are going to find anything and the track record on these leak investigations is that they rarely do, because journalists don’t want to disclose their sources. But if they do find something, they want to do it as quickly as possible. And in this case, you’ve got a very small universe. All they have to find out is who are the people at the CIA who first talked to Bob Novak? We pretty well know that. That’s been disclosed. And who were the people who talked to Novak and to at least these two other reporters from Newsday who have been mentioned in the White House memo, and that should be easily ascertained.

I would like to know who Novak talked to at CIA! I believe one was George Tenet.

Murray Waas, often sited by Tom Maguire, has this article out today on possible implications for Rove from recent Fitzgerald activity:

Fitzgerald did not seek an indictment of Rove, opting to present any potential new evidence on the White House deputy chief of staff to a new grand jury. In recent days, Fitzgerald has re-interviewed several witnesses with knowledge of Rove’s role in the Plame leak and talked with attorneys of other potential witnesses.

But attorneys involved in the case, as well as outside legal experts, said that even in routine criminal investigations, defendants are not typically cleared of wrongdoing until the most important witnesses are heard from. They said that any prosecutor would be remiss to wrap up a case without hearing from all the key witnesses.

Waas is alluding to the Libby trial and this is all BS. Fitzgerald can re-open the case whenever he wants if information from the Libby trial looks to be pertinent to Rove. It is legal shenanigans like this that make me conclude Fitzgerald has an agenda and is not out to investigate objectively. His one sided investigation so far only cements that conclusion.

If Libby strikes a plea bargain, he would likely agree as part of any deal to provide information to prosecutors that had some bearing on Rove and other Bush administration officials, according to attorneys involved in the case. Even if no plea bargain occurs, a federal grand jury could compel Libby to testify about others under a grant of immunity. If he still refused to testify, Libby could then be jailed for civil contempt, or charged anew with criminal contempt or obstruction of justice.

This whole article is a liberal fantasy. Libby has been charged with lying – something impossible to prove when faulty memory of details is an easy and reasonable explanation. Libby was focused on recalling and communicating how he never confirmed to a reporter Valerie’s situation by simply saying he had heard the information from the press. He was probably not worried about how he knew the truth since he was allowed to know the truth and the investigation was who leaked. The foundation for Fitzgerald’s case is the fact is Libby did not confirm Valerie’s role to reporters. It also stipulates no reporters heard confirmation from Libby. It simply claims his recollection of hearing about the issue of Valerie from reporters (which is true) was to hide the fact he heard the truth about Valerie from inside the government (which is also true). Fitzgerald needs to prove the focus on leaking by Libby was a lie to cover up the non-criminal act of knowing! Never going to happen. So Murray Waas and folks need to realize there is another possibility – Libby is cleared and Fitzgerald is laughed back to Chicago.

But the real folks in trouble appear to be at NBC. With Andrea’s lame attempt to change her words from 2 years ago Waas does point to what is at the core of Fitzgerald’s confusion:

Libby’s indictment alleged that he committed perjury by testifying that he learned of Plame’s CIA employment from NBC Washington Bureau Chief Tim Russert, and that Russert said such information about Plame was common knowledge among Washington journalists. Russert, however, testified to the grand jury that he had never told Libby about Plame.

Instead, the indictment charged that Libby had learned about Plame’s CIA employment and her possible role in the Niger mission from four government officials, one of them being Vice President Cheney.

For the record – both can be true. Libby could have been hearing the same thing from reporters as he was getting from internal discsussions. And he could be talking to Rove about the reporter side only since that was an issue they were dealing with. So Fitz has nothing except some conversations focused on one aspect – the potentially illegal aspect! BFD.

Andrea’s spin is a sign there is trouble at NBC. Russert also stated on Oct 29th that he had bits of the information when he talked to Libby and discussed this information at an NBC meeting – but only put all the pieces together when Novak’s article came out. Andrea’s spin is a sign she is being contacted to re-testify. Looks like Andrea and Tim shouldn’t have had that gab fest on Oct 29th, 2005 on The Tim Russert show. Fitz has a track record of automatically believing journalist spin without question. Which is why he is a poor example of a good prosecutor.

Now to Mac Ranger and his post on Wilson and anti-Semitism. Mac refers to a WND article by Jack Cashill, but I want to focus in, again, on something other than the general topic.

On June 14, 2003, when former ambassador Joseph Wilson spoke at the Education for Peace in Iraq Center, he too laid the blame for an allegedly misbegotten war at the foot of an endangered class of Jews.

In his conspiratorial zeal, Wilson sheds useful light on the not so subtle anti-Semitism oozing through the cracks in the left’s kumbaya facade.

“I remain of the view,” Wilson told the EPIC forum crowd two months after the fall of Baghdad, “that we will find chemical and biological weapons, and we may well find something that indicates that Saddam’s regime maintained an interest in nuclear weapons.” Wilson made this extraordinary statement after he had started leaking to the media about President Bush’s alleged WMD deceptions and just weeks before his celebrated New York Times op-ed piece. This one sentence would seem to undercut the argument waged by him and literally millions of other self-deluding progressives around the world that “Bush lied” about Iraq’s WMD threat.

Here is a transcript of the EPIC conference, and here is the EPIC conference so you can listen to Wilson himself (near/at the bottom). This is very interesting – and something that needs to be brought up if there is any Senate investigation into pre-Iraq hype. The article and discussion is an excellent window into the confused mind of Wilson and the left in general:

He was suggesting instead that there was an altogether different agenda behind the drive to liberate Iraq, a much more sinister one. Given America’s “real agenda,” Wilson found it “not surprising” that Saddam would pursue nuclear weapons “in a part of the world where you do have a nuclear-armed country, an enemy of yours, which is just a country away from you.” The enemy he refers to here is not Iran, but Israel.

Before this friendly, left-leaning audience, Wilson casually dismissed the liberation of Iraq. Iraq’s terrorist connections, and the talk of WMDs as mere distractions. In Wilson’s book, Israel is the primary reason the United States went to war against Iraq. He might have made a credible case if he spoke of the need to defend the one functioning democracy in that benighted part of the world, to forestall a second Holocaust, to prevent Saddam from destroying Tel Aviv with a few well-aimed VX-tipped missiles, or even to stop him from commissioning suicide bombers.

If I were the reps, I would allow the dems to bring in Joe Wilson as their white knight who exposed the Bush administration, and then expose Joe to the nation through this one forum. What would Reid, Pelosi, Kennedy and Schumer do if their anointed savior had these details tagged to him and them:

Sharing the podium with Wilson during the question-and-answer session was his ally, Ray McGovern, representing a group called Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity. Some time later, McGovern gave a talk to a group at the Democratic National Committee headquarters in Washington in a forum organized by Rep. John Conyers of Michigan, the senior Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee.

While some members of the audience were distributing literature accusing Israel of staging the 9-11 attacks, McGovern was telling Conyers and other House Democrats that the Iraq War was part of an effort to enable Israel to “dominate that part of the world.”

Bring ’em on!

Mac also posts on associating the VIPS nuts with Wilson – this time by Jed Babbin at American Spectator:

Earlier this afternoon, I had a very unpleasant conversation with Mr. Larry Johnson, a former CIA officer who is now out and about defending Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame. Johnson, in my interview with him, confirmed some things, left some open, but revealed something startling: the defense of Joe Wilson is apparently being run from inside the CIA.

Why is this news? A rogue element inside the CIA has been trying to play games on this subject since Wilson first started with the Kerry Campaign. The entire Wilson gambit, from his Kristof and Pincus leaks to his own article, were a game between the CIA and the Kerry Campaign. A campaign that also included one Sandy Berger at some point. The CIA wanted Bush gone and I think that allowed the events of 2003 and Wilson to happen (the CIA knows how to stop leaks when they want to). I think the surprise on all of them will be the fact that Joe, Valerie and a few others stupidly used events surrounding dealings in Niger that were not known in the CIA as a backdrop this political ploy. If the Niger dealings expose something the Wilson’s should not have allowed to be exposed then they will be in serious trouble.

It is clear the Niger trips by Wilson dealt with the uranium trade, possibly with rogue states like Iraq, Iran, Libya and North Korea. Why the Wilson’s would use these trips as the backdrop to a silly partisan stunt is beyond me. Mac has some comments on this:

But when the real story comes out, there’s going to be a whole lot of new used car salesman out there, as well as a few paddling up the creek.

As it’s been said, “Hold on to your hat!” It’s going to be a inspiring week up ahead.

I hope it does come out soon.

12 responses so far

12 Responses to “The Whole Plame Thing”

  1. jcox31mc says:

    Hello AJ. I enjoy your comments and Mac Ranger’s as well. You really keep us UTD. I have one other observation:
    I’ve watched Chris Matthews off-and-on for years, just to keep up on the leftist, anti-war faction and I have read one or two of his books. So I feel that I know about him pretty well. He’s the perfect example of someone that sees everything only his way (as shown when he was so rude to Zell Miller and interupts anyone that starts to say something that he does not want to hear). He, with his unbelievable ego, probably does not realize how we viewers can develope a pretty good feel for his attitudes. To me, he acts, obsessed (phoney) and completely out in left field with his pushing the anti-Bush, anti-war and Plamegate position (like he is guilty of something). Does anyone else see this and what might be his exposure in any of this? He tries to act so patriotic, pro-military and at the same time, undercuts and endangers the troops in Iraq (all based on his Peace Corps background to avoid military service). Does anyone else see this in a similar way?

  2. patch says:

    Wait a minute,

    Who says Russert testified under oath to the grand jury?

    My understanding, which I read elsewhere, (Can’t find the link.) is that “Fat Boy Tim” spoke to the prosecutor in an unsworn statement and only about his side of the conversation with Mr. Libby.

    If Mr. Fitzgerald is looking for liars, he needs to get every single on of the media involved in this under oath.

    Mr. Fitzgerald may have violated a cardinal rule for prosecutors:

    Never call a witness without knowing their testimony.

    If Mr. Fitzgerald was depending on unsworn testimony from some member of the media in the indictment, that testimony may change when it is given under oath in a trial.

  3. stan says:

    I completely understand that Russert, Mitchell and the rest of the crew at NBC want to “remember” in a way that is as damaging to Bush as possible. That is just politics. What bothers me is that it seems possible that in doing so, they might help put a man in prison who they know doesn’t belong in prison. (Not to mention the harm to the republic from this type of persectuting prosecution.)

    There is something profoundly sick about these folks.

  4. MaidMarion says:


    Something’s been knawing me…

    Before Novak’s July 14, 2003 article, it is clear the Dems were hard at work trying to sully the Bush Administration in the public’s eye through the “dismissal of the forged documents” and “disregard for the assessments of intelligence analysts” angles.

    Don’t you wonder, though, if Novak had never written his article, what would have happened to these charges?

    But Novak wrote his article, and all of a sudden attention gets totally focused on Plame’s outing and the Dems push and succeed in getting a grand jury investigation. This tells us that the Dems calculated the Plame affair as more politically lucrative than the forged Niger documents.

    Kerry would have benefited greatly had Fitzgerald completed his case right before the November 2004 election. And Fitzgerald has let it be known that he was ready to conclude his case, but two journalists were holding out.

    What stood between Kerry and the White House? Judith Miller.

    Don’t you think Hillary Clinton was apoplectic over the investigation being able to conclude before the election? Don’t you think she might have whispered into Mandy’s ear “Tell Matt to stonewall. We can’t be certain Miller won’t cave.”

  5. MaidMarion says:

    After Fitzgerald came out with his indictment, Tim Russert said on Meet the Press that following Sunday, that the reason Libby called him in early July was to complain something that was said on MSNBC.

    Does anyone know what show he was talking about, the date, and what was said that ticked off Libby?

  6. MaidMarion says:


    That’s the tragedy here.

    The only reason I’m following this particular story is that I’ve been watching it develop since day one and have been crazed about MSM reporting of it ever since. The media MUST be held accountable for their witting manipulation of the specifics of primary source statements.

    Chris Matthews’s show has been a raw example of exactly how the art of “disinformation” works. And it’s been rather scary to watch. I’ve been watching him like an eagle since March 2003 and have been blown away at how easily he has restated what officials purportedly said on the topic (and which restatements are 180 degress OPPOSITE with what those officials said and which I heard with my own ears.)

    Chris is expert at the mechanics of “dizinformatia” and you only have to have been watching “Hardball” for the last month to realize that he’s been actively interested in taking down someone in the Administration. Chris has been actively involved in this takedown since day one.

    Politics has a higher priority for Chris Matthews than the security of our nation. It truly is sick and it makes me wonder why Cathleen is still married to him.

  7. AJStrata says:

    Maid Marion,

    It was the Chris Mathews show of course!

  8. MaidMarion says:


    Do you have an exact date?

  9. MaidMarion says:

    Does anyone know whether “The Tim Russert Show”, which airs on CNBC on Saturdays, publishes a transcript? Haven’t been able to locate it…

    I’d like to get my hands upon the November 5, 2005 transcript of his show (i.e., the day after Fitzgerald’s indictment of Libby.) I watched the program and noticed some peculiar CYA comments made by Andrea Mitchell and Howard Fineman. Actually…the whole program seemed to be a huge NBC effort to get “their side of the story” out on public record. But there are two specific comments which I found blatant CYA yet have seen no blogosphere posts…

    Can anyone link to this transcript?


  10. AJStrata says:

    No, it was between the Wilson article and the Noval article. And the show was about the Wilson article.

    Someone has the date (like Maguire or Mac Ranger). If I get a chance I will try and look for it.

  11. MaidMarion says:

    Re. the transcript of the “Tim Russert Show”… the date would have been October 29 not Nov 5, sorry.

  12. MaidMarion says:


    I found the Hardball transcript…it was July 8, 2003…and remember seeing this show and how livid it made me. Notice how he kept pushing the meme that a) the Vice President’s office sent Wilson on the trip and then b) ignores the answers he brought back. And this show followed two days after Andrea Mitchell had Wilson as a guest on Meet The Press, which was the same day Wilson came out of the closet with his Op-Ed.

    No wonder Libby complained to Russert! And we’re supposed to believe, after Libby talks to Russert, that Russert didn’t realize where Plame fit in to the picture until he read Novak’s article on July 14th? We’re supposed to find that credible?