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Archive for the ‘Valerie Plame’ Category

We Knew They Would

Posted by MEC on March 19, 2007

Last Friday, I predicted that The Usual Suspects, rather than admit defeat in their attempts to discredit Joe and Valerie Wilson, would accuse Valerie of lying under oath in the Congressional hearing.

I don’t know whether Brit Hume was the first, but he certainly went at it with gusto. Think Progress demolishes him, but I expect we’ll be hearing the same accusation from others of his ilk, probably in the same words and everything.

I expect demands that Valerie be indicted for lying under oath, because it’s a Very Serious Crime, from the exact same people who’ve been defending Scooter Libby by saying he should never have been prosecuted because there was “no underlying crime”.

[H/T Salon’s Table Talk]

Posted in anti-truth, Brit Hume, Fox Noise, GOP/Media Complex, hypocrites, mediawhores, Table Talk, Valerie Plame | 2 Comments »

Who Ya Gonna Believe?

Posted by MEC on March 18, 2007

When Groucho Marx asked “Who are you going to believe, me or your lying eyes?” it was funny.

When the people involved in the smear campaign against Valerie Plame in effect ask us that, it’s just stupid.

In a comment on this post, whig points us to a post in cannablog that zeroes in on a statement that should settle once and for all the question of whether Valerie Plame’s CIA status was classified information.

From the hearing transcript:

HENRY WAXMAN: General Hayden and the CIA have cleared these following comments for today’s hearing.
 

During her employment at the CIA, Ms. Wilson was undercover. Her employment status with the CIA was classified information, prohibited from disclosure under Executive Order 12958.
 

At the time of the publication of Robert Novak’s column on July 14, 2003, Ms. Wilson’s CIA employment status was covert. This was classified information.
 

Ms. Wilson served in senior management positions at the CIA, in which she oversaw the work for other CIA employees and she attained the level of GS-14, Step 6, under the federal pay scale.
 

Ms. Wilson worked on some of the most sensitive and highly secretive matters handled by the CIA.
 

Ms. Wilson served at various times overseas for the CIA.

It can’t be clearer than this. By clearing that information to be made public, the head of the CIA confirmed its truth. Valerie Plame’s employment status with the CIA was classified information, prohibited from disclosure under Executive Order 12958.

This unambiguous and authoritative statement will not stop The Usual Suspects from continuing to claim that Valerie Plame was not a covert agent. I won’t be a bit surprised to hear them claim that the Honorable Mr. Waxman was lying about General Hayden reviewing and clearing the statement. They can’t do anything else, in fact, because they’ve made too much of a commitment to their own position to admit they’re wrong.

The thing is, the only way to agree with the rightwingers’ claims is to decide that everybody else is lying: not just that Valerie Plame is lying, but that Patrick Fitzgerald is lying, Henry Waxman is lying, Michael Hayden is lying, former CIA agents Jim Marcinkowski and Larry Johnson are lying. And really, what are the odds that all these people, who have heretofore had sterling reputations, would be lying now?

Posted in Congressional hearings, Valerie Plame | 1 Comment »

Waxman Caught Toensing Lying Under Oath. Why Wasn’t There ‘Film At Eleven’?

Posted by Phoenix Woman on March 17, 2007

In the first post-Waxman-hearing commentary up at Fire Dog Lake (for which I guest post), Jane Hamsher stated the following (emphases mine):

Toensing’s testimony was rife with what could charitably be considered “inaccuracies.” She claimed knowledge of Plame’s status she freely admitted she could not have had, having not spoken to either the CIA nor Plame on the topic, and she also claimed that Grenier had given her name as Valerie Plame (he hadn’t). Waxman seemed to be aware of this as he closed out the proceedings, thanking the administration’s spokesman (and ComPost contributor) for her time, promising that her statements would be fact checked. I’m sure Marcy will be doing much the same here tonight.

And frequent DKos diarist and FDL commenter litigatormom has her own commentary over at Daily Kos on why Victoria Toensing is not just a bad liar, but a bad lawyer as well.

It was fun watching Toensing blanch when Waxman told her that her testimony would be fact-checked.  Waxman made it perfectly clear that he had no time for her nonsense, then gave her a final, elegant stab to let her evade being brought up on perjury charges — if she was willing to “correct” her lies.  Now she’s caught between two fires:  Admit she lied, or face perjury charges. 

It’s fascinating that something that was nearly as big news as the hearing itself would be all but ignored by the mainstream press.  Yet the accounts I’ve seen barely mention Toensing’s presence,  much less her lying under oath.

Gee, I wonder why.  Could it be that the GOP/Media Complex is too busy sticking shivs in Valerie Plame’s back to actually do any real reporting?

Posted in beat the press, Congressional hearings, eedjits, GOP/Media Complex, media, Media machine, mediawhores, mythmaking, Silly Republicans, Valerie Plame | 6 Comments »

Information-Free Reporting

Posted by MEC on March 17, 2007

Julie Hirschfeld Davis of the Associated Press provides a lesson on how to report on a big story without including any significant detail whatever:

Valerie Plame put a glamorous face and a personal story to Democrats’ criticism of the Bush administration Friday…

Mmm yeah. The important thing about a woman who helped to manage and run one of the CIA’s most important worldwide programs is that she’s a looker. Uh huh. Happy Women’s History Month.

Plame, the operative at the center of the leak scandal that resulted in last week’s criminal conviction of a former top White House official, created more of a stir by her presence on Capitol Hill than by her testimony.

.

She revealed little new information about the case….

Oh, so it’s not significant that she settled the question of whether she was, in fact, a covert agent and therefore White House officials committed a serious breach of national security by outing her.

Still, Plame’s appearance before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee was a moment of political theater that dramatized Democrats’ drive to use their control of Congress to expose what they see as White House efforts to intimidate dissenters.

See? It’s all just about partison politics, not about Congress’ duty to provide oversight, especially when there’s misconduct in the other branches of government.

News cameras whirred and spectators craned their necks to catch a glimpse of Plame as the blond former operative took her place alone at the witness table for her 90 minutes of testimony.

The rest of the report is just as empty — except where Davis is actively undermining Valerie Plame Wilson’s testimony by repeating disinformation. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in anti-truth, beat the press, Congressional hearings, distractions, GOP/Media Complex, hearings, mediawhores, The smear industry, Valerie Plame | 2 Comments »

Was Valerie Wilson, not Joe, the Real Target?

Posted by MEC on March 17, 2007

Valerie Plame Wilson testified yesterday about her CIA assignment:

In the run-up to the war with Iraq, I worked in the Counterproliferation Division of the CIA, still as a covert officer whose affiliation with the CIA was classified. I raced to discover intelligence for senior policy makers on Iraq ‘s presumed weapons of mass destruction program. While I helped to manage and run secret worldwide operations against this WMD target from CIA headquarters in Washington , I also traveled to foreign countries on secret missions to find vital intelligence.

She also testified that

In February of 2002, a young junior officer who worked for me — came to me very upset. She had just received a telephone call on her desk from someone — I don’t know who — in the office of the vice-president asking about this report of this alleged sale of yellow cake uranium from Niger to Iraq.

She was specifically working on Iraq ‘s presumed weapons of mass destruction program. She wasn’t just an agent; she had people reporting to her in CIA headquarters. What are the odds that Dick Cheney, who was actively meddling in the very work she was overseeing, didn’t know about her? Slim, or none?

We know from other sources that Cheney was angry that he wasn’t getting what he wanted from the intelligence reports. And he wouldn’t get reports that “fit the facts around the policy” from Valerie Plame Wilson. Her testimony makes that very clear:

Intelligence collection is certainly more of an art than a science. But if there is any taint of bias, then it undermines its usefulness. The primary customer of our intelligence if, of course, the president of the United States. And if the president of the United States thinks somehow or doesn’t believe that his intelligence that he receives on his desk — he or she receives on his desk every morning — is free of ideology, politics, a certain viewpoint, how then can that president make the most important decisions of all about the security of our country? And I do feel passionately about that. You have to get the politics out of our intelligence process.

Ms. Wilson testified that she believed her outing was retaliation for her husband’s public criticism of Bush’s lies. She could be wrong about that. It might have been retaliation for doing her job the way it should be done, as the Busheviks have retaliated against so many people from climate scientists to U.S. attorneys for doing their jobs the way they should be done instead of serving the Bushevik agenda.

[H/T Arizona Girl in Salon’s Table Talk for inspiring these thoughts]

Posted in Congressional hearings, Dick Cheney, heroines, Iraq war, Joe Wilson, Table Talk, Valerie Plame | 5 Comments »

Because You Know They Will

Posted by MEC on March 16, 2007

Valerie Plame Wilson testified under oath today that

  • She was a covert agent, she had been in the field within the past five years, and that performing a “desk job” instead of being out in the field did not change her covert status.
  • She was not the person who recommended sending Ambassador Joe Wilson to Niger.

How soon after she finished her testimony did the Usual Suspects proclaim that she lied under oath? Or did they even wait that long?

Posted in The smear industry, Valerie Plame | 5 Comments »

 
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