Wilson, Miller and the CIA.....The Untold Story

dirty

EOG Master
#1
<!--StartFragment --> [FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]October 26, 2005
[/FONT]The Untold Story: Joseph Wilson, Judith Miller and the CIA

[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]By Cliff Kincaid
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The savage left-wing attack on Judith Miller from inside and outside of the New York Times completely misses the point. She is under attack for being a lackey of the Bush Administration when she failed to do the administration and the public a big favor. She could have done a potential Pulitzer Prize-winning story that could have broken the Joseph Wilson case wide open. It is a story exposing the Wilson mission to Africa as a CIA operation designed to undermine President Bush.
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[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]For 85 days in jail, Miller protected her source, Lewis Libby, Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff, but the fact remains that she never used the explosive information Libby gave her. Now we know, according to Miller's account, that Libby told her about a CIA war with the Bush Administration over Iraq intelligence and that he vociferously complained to her about CIA leaks to the press. But Miller decided that what Libby told her was not newsworthy. Why?[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]We were critical of Miller from the start because she went to jail rather than testify under oath and tell the truth before a grand jury. Eventually, she did testify, under questionable and mysterious circumstances. She claims she insisted that her testimony be restricted to her conversations with Libby. Clearly, Miller had a relationship with Libby as a source. On that matter, she is "guilty" as charged. But the media attacks on Miller really show her critics do not regard Libby as a source worth protecting. Libby, according to columnist Frank Rich, is a "neocon" who misled the nation to get us into the Iraq War. On the other hand, Wilson is supposed to be a hero and whistleblower. He came back from Africa, after investigating the Iraq-uranium link, and concluded that the Bush Administration was lying. His wife, CIA employee Valerie Plame, had her identity revealed by conservative columnist Robert Novak because Bush officials were upset that her husband had told the truth. At least this is their version of the facts.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]But if Miller was too cozy with the White House, why didn't she rush into print with Libby's version of events and use him as an anonymous source? Miller couldn't even be counted on to do a story based on high-level information provided to her by the vice president's top aide. It was information that was not only true but explosive. Libby was letting Miller in on the real story of the Wilson affair--that the CIA was out to get the President, and that the agency was using Wilson to get Bush.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]The fact that she didn't write a story has been cited many times, supposedly to prove that Miller should never have been called by Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald before the grand jury. If she didn't write a story, we were told, she shouldn't have to be ordered to talk about her sources. Fitzgerald obviously believed the information she had about her sources was relevant to the case. And it was. But Miller didn't write any of this up at the time. That's mighty strange behavior for a pawn of the administration.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]In my recent special report on this matter, former prosecutor Joseph diGenova called the Wilson mission a CIA "covert operation" against Bush. Like the Novak column, a Miller story about this matter could have raised questions about the purpose of the trip and who was behind it. But if Miller had done such a story for the Times, the impact could have been enormous. After all, the Times was the chosen vessel for Wilson to write his column claiming there was no Iraq uranium deal with Niger.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]Miller could have revealed that Wilson was recommended for the mission by his own wife, a CIA employee. His wife's role was critically important because a truly undercover CIA operative would not recommend her husband for an overseas trip and then expect to maintain her "secret" identity as he proceeded to write an article for the New York Times and become a public spectacle because of it. Her role in the trip means that she was not undercover in any real sense of the word.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]As I have noted previously, Herbert Romerstein, a former professional staff member of the House Intelligence Committee, says that Plame's involvement in sending her husband on the CIA mission to Africa meant that when Wilson went public about it, foreign intelligence services would investigate all of his family members for possible CIA connections. Those intelligence services would not simply assume that he went on the mission because he was a former diplomat. They would investigate his wife. And that would inevitably lead to unraveling the facts about Valerie Wilson, or Valerie Plame, and her involvement with the CIA. Romerstein says that Plame's role in arranging the mission for her husband is solid proof that she was not concerned about having her "cover" blown because she was not truly under cover.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]By any account, she was hardly a James Bond-type. Plame's "cover," a company called "Brewster-Jennings & Associates," was so flimsy that she used it as her affiliation when she made a 1999 contribution to Al Gore for president. She identified herself as "Valerie Wilson" in this case. The same Federal Election Commission records showing her contribution to Gore also reveal a $372 contribution to America Coming Together, when the group was organizing to defeat Bush.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]If Miller had done some extra digging, she would have discovered that, contrary to what Wilson said publicly in the Times, his findings were interpreted by many officials as additional evidence of an Iraqi interest in obtaining uranium. This kind of story, if it had been published in the New York Times, could have completely undermined Wilson's credibility. It would have made it ridiculous for the Times to subsequently demand the appointment of a special prosecutor to investigate the Bush White House. The Times went ahead and made that editorial demand, only to have it backfire on the paper when Fitzgerald demanded Miller's testimony.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]The CIA obviously knew the facts of the case. Nevertheless, with Wilson and the media, led by the Times, generating a feeding frenzy over the publication of his wife's name and affiliation, the agency pushed for a Justice Department investigation, on the false premise that revealing her identity was a crime. This is what started it all. It was the perfect way to divert attention from a much-needed investigation of the CIA, the ultimate source of the questionable intelligence that the administration used to make the case for the Iraq War.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]Eventually, some members of the press caught up with some parts of the truth. Susan Schmidt of the Washington Post was honest enough to admit, when the evidence came out, that Wilson had misrepresented his wife's role. Schmidt reported that the Senate Intelligence Committee report found that he was specifically recommended for the mission by his wife, "contrary to what he has said publicly." By then, however, the media feeding frenzy was well underway and the facts of the case were being buried or shunted aside. And this takes us to where we are today--wondering whether Fitzgerald will indict Bush officials for making conflicting statements about the facts of the case. If the investigation was a real desire for truth and justice, Fitzgerald would drop the case and accuse the CIA of pursuing the matter for an illegitimate political reason. It's the CIA--not the White House--that should be under investigation.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]If Miller deserves criticism, it is for failing to write the story when Libby handed it to her on a silver platter. She had the perfect opportunity to set the record straight about some misinformation that had already appeared in her own paper. After all, it was Times columnist Nicholas Kristof who had asserted, in a May 6, 2003, column, that "I'm told by a person involved in the Niger caper that more than a year ago the vice president's office asked for an investigation of the uranium deal, so a former U.S. ambassador to Africa was dispatched to Niger." We now know that Wilson was the source of this information, and that it was false. He whitewashed the nature of the CIA role in the trip because he wanted to protect his wife. Wilson wanted people to think that the Vice President's office was somehow behind his mission.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]We also know, because of Miller's account of her testimony under oath, that it was because of this misinformation that Libby talked to Miller and wanted to get out the other side of the story. The Vice President's office, said by the liberal press to be at the center of the CIA leak "conspiracy," was justifiably outraged over Wilson going public with misleading information about his mission and blasting the administration in the process. Miller also testified that she thought Plame's CIA connection "potentially newsworthy." You bet it was. But she didn't write the story. This is where Miller failed her paper and the public.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]Consider the record of the Times in this case. Editorially, the Times called for the investigation but didn't want to cooperate with it. The paper also published the misleading Wilson and Kristof columns. And yet Miller, who didn't write anything, is the Times journalist under fire in the press because she wrote stories about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs before the war and later talked to Libby about how the CIA had gotten the facts wrong! Miller has become a target even though it's her colleagues who put the misleading Wilson column into the paper, published Kristof's erroneous account, and called for the probe that resulted in Miller serving jail time.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]Miller's WMD stories are said by the hard left to be evidence of her reliance on the Bush Administration for information. In fact, it shows her dependence on the same sources that told the administration that Iraq had WMD. Those sources included CIA director George Tenet, a Clinton holdover, who told Bush that finding WMD in Iraq was a "slam dunk."[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]We are still left with the mystery of why Miller didn't write anything based on what Libby told her. She says she proposed a story. Miller and/or her editors may have been persuaded to drop it by other sources, who may have been in the CIA. It makes perfect sense. The CIA had been behind the Wilson trip from the beginning and, as Libby told Miller, had been trying to undercut the administration's Iraq policy and divert attention from the agency's poor performance on Iraqi WMD. The CIA did not want the full extent of its role uncovered and decided that the best way to divert attention from its own shabby performance was to accuse Bush officials of violating the law against identifying covert agents. This was one covert operation by the CIA on top of another. Miller watched the whole thing play out and refused to tell her own paper and the public what was really happening.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]Miller says that she only talked to the grand jury about her conversations with Libby. She said she wanted to protect other sources she used on other stories. Miller's 2001 book, Germs, on "Biological weapons and America's secret war," has several references to her other sources. Some are unnamed "analysts" at the CIA.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]My own recent special report on this matter struck a chord with readers, one of whom said it is a case of "the CIA undermining and eliminating a president." But Bush is still hanging on, dismissing the stream of stories on the case as "background noise." Staying above the fray, when he has come under assault by America's premier intelligence service, Bush is letting CIA director Porter Goss do the necessary job of cleaning house at this corrupt agency.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]If some of Bush's aides now go down on dubious charges of having faulty or inconsistent memories about the case, they could try to blow the whistle on the CIA in court. The CIA would most likely try to censor the proceedings on grounds of "national security" and protecting agency "operations." For the sake of maintaining our democratic form of government and reigning in rogue elements at the CIA, the truth must come out.[/FONT]
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]? 2005 Accuracy In Media[/FONT]​
 

dirty

EOG Master
#2
The Truth Slowly Coming out about who Outed Plame.....

The Truth Slowly Coming out about who Outed Plame.....

THE PLAME GAME
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[FONT=Palatino, Georgia, Times New Roman, Times, serif][SIZE=+2]Analyst says Wilson
'outed' wife in 2002
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<!-- end head --><!-- deck -->[FONT=Palatino, Georgia, Times New Roman, Times, serif][SIZE=+1]Disclosed in casual conversations
a year before Novak column
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<!-- end deck --><HR SIZE=1>[SIZE=-1]Posted: November 5, 2005
1:00 a.m. Eastern

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[FONT=Palatino, Times New Roman, Georgia, Times, serif]<!-- byline -->By Art Moore
<!-- end byline -->[SIZE=-1]<!-- copyright -->? 2005 WorldNetDaily.com <!-- end copyright -->[/SIZE][/FONT]
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Valerie Plame appeared in Vanity Fair magazine with her husband Joseph Wilson in January 2004</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>A retired Army general says the man at the center of the CIA leak controversy, Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson, revealed his wife Valerie Plame's employment with the agency in a casual conversation more than a year before she allegedly was "outed" by the White House through a columnist. Maj. Gen. Paul Vallely told WorldNetDaily that Wilson mentioned Plame's status as a CIA employee over the course of at least three, possibly five, conversations in 2002 in the Fox News Channel's "green room" in Washington, D.C., as they waited to appear on air as analysts.


Vallely and Wilson both were contracted by Fox News to discuss the war on terror as the U.S. faced off with Iraq in the run-up to the spring 2003 invasion.
Vallely says, according to his recollection, Wilson mentioned his wife's job in the spring of 2002 ? more than a year before Robert Novak's July 14, 2003, column identified her, citing senior administration officials, as "an Agency operative on weapons of mass destruction."
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Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Paul Vallely</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>
"He was rather open about his wife working at the CIA," said Vallely, who retired in 1991 as the Army's deputy commanding general in the Pacific.
Vallely made his claim in an interview Thursday night on the ABC radio network's John Batchelor show.
Vallely told WND that, in his opinion, it became clear over the course of several conversations that Wilson had his own agenda, as the ambassador's analysis of the war and its surrounding politics strayed from reality.
"He was a total self promoter," Vallely said. "I don't know if it was out of insecurity, to make him feel important, but he's created so much turmoil, he needs to be investigated and put under oath."
The only indictment in Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald's two-year investigation came one week ago when Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, was charged with one count of obstruction of justice, two counts of making false statements and two counts of perjury in the case. He could face up to 30 years in prison and $1.25 million in fines if convicted on all five counts.
Vallely said, citing CIA colleagues, that in addition to his conversations with Wilson, the ambassador was proud to introduce Plame at cocktail parties and other social events around Washington as his CIA wife.
"That was pretty common knowledge," he said. "She's been out there on the Washington scene many years."
If Plame were a covert agent at the time, Vallely said, "he would not have paraded her around as he did."
"This whole thing has become the biggest non-story I know," he concluded, "and all created by Joe Wilson."
Fitzgerald has been investigating whether Plame's identity was leaked by the White House as retaliation against Wilson for his assertion that the Bush administration made false claims about Iraq's attempt to buy nuclear material in Africa.
Wilson traveled to Niger in February 2002 on a CIA-sponsored trip to check out the allegations about Iraq and wrote up his findings in a July 6, 2003, New York Times opinion piece titled "What I Didn't Find in Africa."
White House defenders insist the aides simply were setting the record straight about Wilson, seeking to put his credibility in context by pointing out it was Plame who helped him get the CIA consulting job. Wilson denied his wife's role initially, but a bipartisan report by the Senate panel documented it.
Wilson declared in the column that his trip revealed the Iraq-Niger connection was dubious, but his oral report to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence actually corroborated the controversial "16 words" in President Bush's 2003 State of the Union address: "The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa." Libby's charges pertained only to the investigation itself, not the 1982 act that made it illegal to blow a covert U.S. agent's cover.


The Washington attorney who spearheaded the drafting of that law told WND earlier this year that Plame's circumstances don't meet the statute's criteria.
Victoria Toensing ? who worked on the legislation in her role as chief counsel for the chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence ? said Plame most likely was not a covert agent when White House aides mentioned her to reporters. The federal code says the agent must have operated outside the United States within the previous five years. But Plame gave up her role as a covert agent nine years before the Rove interview, according to New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof.



Kristof said the CIA brought Plame back to Washington in 1994 because the agency suspected her undercover security had been compromised by turncoat spy Aldrich Ames.
Wilson's own book, "The Politics of Truth," states he and Plame both returned from overseas assignments in June 1997 and never again were stationed overseas ? placing them in Washington at least six years before the 2003 "outing." Moreover, asserted Toensing, for the law to be violated, White House aides would have had to intentionally reveal Plame's identity with the knowledge that they were disclosing a covert agent.
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dirty

EOG Master
#3
November 8, 2005
Wilson Also Deserves Some of the Scrutiny
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]By Dennis Byrne
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Like children in a fever to dive into their Christmas presents, Senate Democrats can't wait for a new Senate report on pre-Iraq war intelligence failures. They even forced the Senate into a rare secret session last week because, ironically, of their supposed determination to make government more transparent.It's almost as if they have forgotten that the Senate's bipartisan Select Committee on Intelligence already issued a report last year on the quality of the intelligence. The one that should have--but hasn't--stopped former ambassador Joseph Wilson from recklessly claiming that President Bush's "lies" and "disinformation" led us into war. The same report that convincingly demonstrated that any prewar intelligence misinformation was the result of organizational failure or incompetence, not evil intent.
That 500-page unanimously approved report contained 48 well-researched pages just on Wilson's highly self-touted "investigation" of a foreign intelligence report that Niger was slipping Iraq enough lightly processed uranium ore, called yellowcake, to make 50 nuclear bombs. Whatever the truth to the yellowcake charge, the Senate report makes you wonder why the CIA bothered to dispatch Wilson.
Don't get the idea that because he called it an investigation he was sleuthing around, digging up the dirt and sniffing out the truth, like some clandestine CIA operative. He spent, in his own words, "eight days drinking sweet mint tea," and interviewing "dozens" of current government officials and others. Wrong. The Senate report said he didn't meet with current government officials; that would be inappropriate because the U.S. has a real ambassador to do that. Appears Wilson couldn't even get straight with whom he sipped tea.
Never mind. At least he persuaded, cajoled or coerced the truth out of the rest of the "dozens." Sure. The Senate report said the interviewees knew his answers would get back to the U.S. government. Making it ridiculous to assume that they would have confessed to any yellowcake caper. "Yellowcake? Oh, no, boss. Maybe white cake, or chocolate cake. But never, ever yellow cake." No wonder the intelligence community considered his conclusions to be "unreliable," as the report said.
Among his other nuggets was the conclusion that the yellowcake episode couldn't have happened because a French mining consortium controlled Niger mining operations. Swell. No wonder he provided no "substantially new" information, as the Senate report said. About the only credible information he did bring home actually reinforced intelligence reports that an Iraqi delegation had met with the Nigerian prime minister and that Iraq was interested in buying uranium.
Even Wilson could only claim that he "found no evidence" of a yellowcake caper. Yet, somehow, partisans have irresponsibly morphed that into something far beyond logical reach: that Wilson's work actually proved that (1) Iraq wasn't seeking yellowcake, (2) Iraq had no nuclear program, and ultimately (3) President Bush lied about the weapons to get us into war. In fact, Wilson had the unenviable task of proving a negative, and at that, he failed.
But who should be surprised, considering his questionable objectivity? The Senate report confirms that his wife, the now famously uncloaked CIA officer Valerie Plame, called an intelligence meeting to suggest that "someone" should go to Niger to investigate and, oh, by the way, my husband would be a good someone. And that she prepped her husband for the job by referring to the "crazy" report about Niger selling uranium to Iraq. Other meeting participants considered such a trip to Niger to be "redundant," the report said, but it happened anyway.
Then come Wilson's own possibly illegal leaks. Wilson told a reporter that he knew that the original intelligence reports disclosing the yellowcake affairs were fake because he spotted bogus names and dates on them. Yet, the Senate report asked, how could he know when "he had never seen the CIA reports and had no knowledge of what names of dates were in the reports?" Wilson replied that he must have "misspoken" to the reporter. Sure So, where did he get the information? From Plame? And didn't he break the law by publicly disclosing information about the classified document?
No one should get off the hook for exposing Plame as a CIA officer.
But as we breathlessly await the release of the second installment of the Senate's report on intelligence failures, some work remains unfinished from the first one: Why is no one demanding that Wilson be investigated for the same kinds of offenses that got Lewis Libby, Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff, indicted?
[FONT=Times New Roman, Times, serif]Dennis Byrne is a Chicago-area writer and consultant. E-mail: [/FONT]​
 
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