Saturday, July 16, 2005

What do you think will happen to Karl Rove?

I've heard a lot of straw-man arguments feebly attempting to defend Karl Rove's role in the public outing of a CIA operatives identity. Before I pick apart these arguments let's re-cap the whole story.

Joseph Wilson was sent to Niger at the request of the CIA to investigate the possibilty that Niger illegally sold uranium to Iraq. After he completed his mission he reported his findings to the CIA. Wilson concluded that it was highly doubtful that the transaction ever took place.

President Bush in his January 2003 State of the Union address repeated the charges that Iraq tried to buy uranium from Niger.

In response to Bush's speech Wilson wrote an op-ed piece
in the NY Times questioning if the Bush administration was selectively choosing intelligence that supported their case to go to war with Iraq.

As a result of Wilson's public questioning of the Bush administration, columnist Robert Novak wrote a syndicated column that reported a senior administration official told him that Joe Wilsons wife, Valerie Plame was a CIA agent and this had been confirmed by another senior administration official.

It was at this point that the ---- hit the fan. You see it's a crime to intentionally blow a CIA operatives cover to anyone not authorized to receive classified information. Not to mention it's completely unethical for a whole host of reasons.

Wilson claimed it was Karl Rove who leaked the information to the media. Karl Rove denied he was the leak and President Bush stated he would fire anyone in his administration tied to the outing of Valerie Plame.

This brings us to the current situation. It is now known that Karl Rove was one of the two sources that leaked Plame's covert identity to Novak.
We now learn that not only did Rove confirm Mr Wilsons wife's true occupation to Novak but he also blew her cover to reporter Matt Cooper from Time Magazine.
Hello, these are reporters he is talking to! Not the best people to talk about the identity of CIA operatives with. He is either stupid or maliciously conniving. Since i don't think he is stupid it leaves the latter. If he acted intentionally and was hoping not to get caught then at the least Bush should keep his word and he should be fired and at the most criminally prosecuted.

Now on to the debunking the Rove defending arguments.

1. His wife's name was not secret it's on his bio:
Big deal, what kind of smoke and mirrors argument is this? His bio does NOT say she works for the CIA. CIA employees are allowed to get married. They are allowed to keep there real names. Once again, is this really an argument or a way to hoodwink the stupid and lazy?

2. Wilson claims VP Cheney sent him to Niger but he is lying because Cheney did not:
Read Wilsons article he never claims Cheney personally sent him.

3. He is a partisan democratic hack:
He worked for Bush Sr and voted for Bush Sr in both elections. Read article about Wilson's political leanings.

4. Rove defenders are using the dubios argument that Rove's outing of Wilson's wife to the media was an off-handed remark made during casual conversation:
Do you really think that Rove is that absent minded, irresponsible and downright stupid? Do you think the American public is dumb enough to believe this excuse? It doesn't take a brain surgeon to know it's common sence to not talk about the true identity of CIA Operatives, especially with a reporter. Somone in Karl Roves position in government has no excuse to not know something as basic as this.

Robert Novak claims he did not out Plame in his column in order to punish Joe Wilson and intimidate other government empoyees that may dare question the administrations use of evidence/intelligence regarding Iraqs WMD. Yet, it appears Novak, intent on outing Plame needed to find a way to make Plames true occupation somehow relevant to his article. To insert this information into his column Novak created a false pretense to justify disclosing her identity as a CIA Operative.
The false pretense - Joe Wilson was an "incredible" choice to investigate the Iraq/Niger uranium deal. The reason he got the job was because of his wife's CIA job. Anyone who knows anything about Wilsons background knows calling him unqualified for the job is absurd and calling him a partisan hack is ludicrous. Using the false pretense Novak was able to force the info on Plame into his article. Mission accomplished Bob.

Novaks behavior is even more reprehensible because he admits he contacted the CIA and was told by the CIA not to out their operative. He went ahead and published his syndicated column anyway.

Hypothetically, even if it were true that Wilson only got the job because of his wife. That is still no excuse to blow an agents cover in the national media. Novak simply could have stated that Wilson got the job because he knew the right people (he had a "hook" as we say in the NYPD).
Clearly Novak had an agenda.

Lastly, Karl Rove told at least one other reporter about Plames status. Another reporter who is currently in jail for refusing to reveal her source also learned of Plames CIA employment. These two reporters had the common sence, patriotic obligation, and ethical judgement not to use the information about Plame they dubiously became privy to.
Too bad Novak doesn't share their integrity.

Here is a good article in todays Washington post that has background info and the latest events.

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