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View Full Version : So seriously... Plame was working on Iran when she was outed...


Taco John
05-02-2006, 10:54 PM
Wow. That couldn't have been a harder blow to the administration and his last few supporters. What's the party line here? Is there anything that the Patteau's of the world can say in defense of this latest revelation?

Pitt Gorilla
05-02-2006, 10:58 PM
"The President can declassify anything he wants. He owns!1"

patteeu
05-02-2006, 11:37 PM
She had to be working on something. Raw Story's track record isn't that great though so who knows what it was. The important question remains: were any laws broken?

jAZ
05-02-2006, 11:42 PM
She had to be working on something. Raw Story's track record isn't that great though so who knows what it was. The important question remains: were any laws broken?
You might have missed the MSNBC report of the same information among all the bold and caps.

http://movies.crooksandliars.com/HB-Plame-Shuster-Iran.wmv

And since when did "brake a law" standard become a prerequisite for such actions as firing, impeachment, etc? Prison or death? Yes, but you seem to wish to avoid discussing this issue until someone is convicted and has lost all appeals. I wonder why?

patteeu
05-03-2006, 12:16 AM
You might have missed the MSNBC report of the same information among all the bold and caps.

http://movies.crooksandliars.com/HB-Plame-Shuster-Iran.wmv

And since when did "brake a law" standard become a prerequisite for such actions as firing, impeachment, etc? Prison or death? Yes, but you seem to wish to avoid discussing this issue until someone is convicted and has lost all appeals. I wonder why?

I don't watch much internet video because I'm on dialup. Do you want to tell me what it says?

It's possible that I'd be in favor of punishing someone who didn't break the law, but I'd have to know what all the details were first. Of course, you don't seem to be hung up on actual details as you jump to your conclusions. As a general rule, if no one broke the law, then it seems out of line to punish them. I could certainly understand it if the President fired someone who did something legal that was against his wishes, but it would be a shame if he fired someone just because it might satisfy the bloodlust of his critics. It's almost inconceivable to me that impeachment of the President would be warranted in this case no matter how bad a decision you might think it was to disclose Ms. Plame's identity.

*edit* Oh, I get it. You are mentioning MSNBC because I criticized Raw Story. I wonder if MSNBC got it right? I guess we'll have to wait and see what happens. */edit*

jAZ
05-03-2006, 01:22 AM
I could certainly understand it if the President fired someone who did something legal that was against his wishes...
As should be the case for anyone who's employment is at the pleasure (or will) of another. If the President feels that the actions of Rove (or whomever) undercut his agenda or harmed the security of the nation... I'd expect (and demand in the latter) that the person be removed from their position of influence/power.
It's almost inconceivable to me that impeachment of the President would be warranted in this case no matter how bad a decision you might think it was to disclose Ms. Plame's identity.
Sadly, you attribute higher standards of conduct to the president's appointees and more power to the President, than you do to him or the public at who's pleasure he serves.

If we feel that he's not performing his duties as we demand, it is our duty to remove him from office. If he is authorizing leaks (or declassifying national security information) for the purpose of advancing his political agenda at the expense of harming our national security... then we as citizens have every right to demand that our elected representatives in Congress "fire" the President by impeachment/removal.

Taco John
05-03-2006, 03:39 AM
She had to be working on something. Raw Story's track record isn't that great though so who knows what it was. The important question remains: were any laws broken?



Well, they broke the story, and MSNBC confirmed it...

And as far as I've seen, Raw Story has been rather good when it comes to reporting on the happenings of this administration.

I don't know if any laws were broken. Unless it's illegal to be stupid. I think Fitzgerald has deemed that nothing was malicious (ie. traitorous) but rather we have a bunch of political snakes who got caught in the trap of their own lies. It'll be much easier (and far more damaging to the Administration) for Fitzgerald to prosecute these idiots for lying about their stupidity, than to prosecute them for treason for it. At least if he was prosecuting them for treason for it, the right could claim that it's a political witch hunt. As it is, Fitzgerald has covered his own ass while exposing a lot of George and Co's.

So, no laws were broken. But that doesn't change the fact that we DID lose an asset in the nuclear struggle against Iran, and that information *is* very public.

patteeu
05-03-2006, 05:41 AM
I don't know if any laws were broken. Unless it's illegal to be stupid. I think Fitzgerald has deemed that nothing was malicious (ie. traitorous) but rather we have a bunch of political snakes who got caught in the trap of their own lies. It'll be much easier (and far more damaging to the Administration) for Fitzgerald to prosecute these idiots for lying about their stupidity, than to prosecute them for treason for it. At least if he was prosecuting them for treason for it, the right could claim that it's a political witch hunt. As it is, Fitzgerald has covered his own ass while exposing a lot of George and Co's.

AFAIK, we don't know what Fitzgerald is doing other than prosecuting Libby for a crime unrelated to national security. It's certainly going to be easier to prosecute for perjury than it would have been to prosecute for treason, but I don't see how it's more damaging to the administration or how it gives the right less opportunity to claim it's a political witchhunt. If he'd found enough evidence to charge someone with treason it would be mega-damaging. Having found nothing in terms of a crime related to leaking classified information, so far as we know, we are left with the appearance that Fitzgerald is just trying to justify his efforts with perjury/obstruction charges.

So, no laws were broken. But that doesn't change the fact that we DID lose an asset in the nuclear struggle against Iran, and that information *is* very public.

Public as in "public" or public as in "leaked classified information?" And what, exactly, do we know about what kind of asset Ms. Plame was? She was "tracking" Iran's nuclear activities according to jAZ's post. Does that mean she had a spreadsheet on her computer at Langley and she gathered data from field officers into a tightly formatted, super-duper Excel app or does it mean she was sneaking around the countryside in Iran passing herself off as a swiss energy consultant deftly extracting information from Iranians who were in the know over happy hour drinks? I can't tell much from the Raw Story report (as relayed by jAZ) so unless there is something in that video link that brings this all to an OMG level, I'm not sure what you and jAZ and David Shuster are getting excited about.

Taco John
05-03-2006, 09:48 AM
AFAIK, we don't know what Fitzgerald is doing other than prosecuting Libby for a crime unrelated to national security. It's certainly going to be easier to prosecute for perjury than it would have been to prosecute for treason, but I don't see how it's more damaging to the administration or how it gives the right less opportunity to claim it's a political witchhunt. If he'd found enough evidence to charge someone with treason it would be mega-damaging. Having found nothing in terms of a crime related to leaking classified information, so far as we know, we are left with the appearance that Fitzgerald is just trying to justify his efforts with perjury/obstruction charges.


Unfortunately for you, the fact that Valerie Plame was working on Irane Nukes kind of makes your spin there extinct. We do know what Fitzgerald is doing. The context is there for anyone to peer at. It's not treason to be stupid, however, it is stupid to lie under oath.




Public as in "public" or public as in "leaked classified information?" And what, exactly, do we know about what kind of asset Ms. Plame was?

Well, we know that she was the undercover kind of assett who was working on Iran's nuclear program. Haven't you been keeping up with the news lately?


She was "tracking" Iran's nuclear activities according to jAZ's post. Does that mean she had a spreadsheet on her computer at Langley and she gathered data from field officers into a tightly formatted, super-duper Excel app or does it mean she was sneaking around the countryside in Iran passing herself off as a swiss energy consultant deftly extracting information from Iranians who were in the know over happy hour drinks?


Huh? What? Happy hour drinks? Boy the spin is getting weak in here. Happy hour drinks? You think we have under cover operatives working on Iraq's nuclear program who are spending their time focused on happy hour drinks?


I can't tell much from the Raw Story report (as relayed by jAZ) so unless there is something in that video link that brings this all to an OMG level, I'm not sure what you and jAZ and David Shuster are getting excited about.


I'm not sure what level of OMG you're looking for. We've discovered that in an attempt for political cover, the Bush Whitehouse exposed an undercover CYA assett who specialized in investigating Iran's nuclear ambitions, thus losing an assett in our bid to keep a real threat from obtaining a nuclear device. What are you looking for here? You're only going to be impressed if they were doing it maliciously? So in your book, it's ok to accidentally reveal an undercover CIA operative when covering your ass politically? Is that what you're saying? Just so long as there is no malicious intent against the government, it's ok to act in ways that accomplish the goals of those with malicious intent?

You're going to have to do much better than that.

You're right. There isn't treason here. Just a bunch of stupid people doing stupid things and creating for themselves and our country, stupid problems. Fitzgerald isn't going to try anyone for treason. That's water well under the bridge at this point. It's not treasonous to be stupid.

jAZ
05-03-2006, 10:39 AM
You're right. There isn't treason here. Just a bunch of stupid people doing stupid things and creating for themselves and our country, stupid problems. Fitzgerald isn't going to try anyone for treason. That's water well under the bridge at this point. It's not treasonous to be stupid.
It's likely not treasonous... certainly not convictably treasonous. It certainly is impeachably (or fireably) reckless though. And possibly criminally jailable on indirect grounds.

I'm not sure that I would simply trivialize this as a mere act of stupidity. I think the folks involved with this aren't stupid nor do I think this was inadvertant. I think they justified their behavior in their minds (as most blindly ideological team players do) by saying that it was a matter of national security to get this spin out.

They had spun their lies so completely about Iraq's "threat" that they viewed any challenge to their grand scheme as a threat to national security. At that point, it became (in their fantasy land) a matter of the greater/lesser threat to national security.

All of this goes back to the deception and manipulation of the case for preemptive war in Iraq. Everything else was the coverup. Outing VP was a coverup for their weak case built upon lies. Lying about outing VP was a coverup for outing VP.

It's all rooted in the deception that lead to this ill-timed, ill-informed, reckless and ideologically/personally motivated war in Iraq.

patteeu
05-03-2006, 10:43 AM
Unfortunately for you, the fact that Valerie Plame was working on Irane Nukes kind of makes your spin there extinct. We do know what Fitzgerald is doing. The context is there for anyone to peer at. It's not treason to be stupid, however, it is stupid to lie under oath.

We don't know what Fitzgerald is doing and if you think you do, you're either kidding yourself or you're letting the one-sided spin sites that you frequent convince you that there's only one way to read the tea leaves.

Well, we know that she was the undercover kind of assett who was working on Iran's nuclear program. Haven't you been keeping up with the news lately?

Is that an "I don't know" or an "I refuse to answer your question?"

Huh? What? Happy hour drinks? Boy the spin is getting weak in here. Happy hour drinks? You think we have under cover operatives working on Iraq's nuclear program who are spending their time focused on happy hour drinks?

Sorry for the obscure reference. Back in the days when I worked in the defense industry, one of the places that we considered a prime hunting ground for anyone trying to pick up on some of our secrets were the local bars where engineers and others involved on our projects would stop after work to wind down and talk (hopefully unclassified) shop. It would be a good place to listen in on conversations of and/or strike up friendships with people with classified knowledge.

My point is, if Plame was indeed working on tracking the Iranian nuclear program, was her role one that makes her outing one of minimal impact (someone else can take over her spreadsheet) or one of catastrophic impact (she was our only undercover operative who had penatrated the highest levels of the Iranian nuke program). That's a huge difference in impact. No doubt the impact was somewhere in between, but nothing about the Raw Story or MSNBC reports that I've seen indicates what her actual role was. All we have is the hyperventilating of those who choose to jump to the conclusion that the outing had a devastating impact. I mean we already knew she worked for the CIA in the nuclear proliferation area. Would her job have been any less important if she was tracking North Korean activities? Or if she was monitoring lost Soviet nukes that might fall in the hands of terrorists? All of these activities are important, but within each activity, the range of possible roles she might have had and the consequential impact of her outing vary from absolutely no damage to potentially very high damage.

I'm not sure what level of OMG you're looking for. We've discovered that in an attempt for political cover, the Bush Whitehouse exposed an undercover CYA assett who specialized in investigating Iran's nuclear ambitions, thus losing an assett in our bid to keep a real threat from obtaining a nuclear device. What are you looking for here? You're only going to be impressed if they were doing it maliciously? So in your book, it's ok to accidentally reveal an undercover CIA operative when covering your ass politically? Is that what you're saying? Just so long as there is no malicious intent against the government, it's ok to act in ways that accomplish the goals of those with malicious intent?

We haven't discovered anything about "political cover." That's anti-Bush spin for "defending policy against a disinformation campaign."

FWIW, I consider "malicious leak of classified info" worse than "reckless leak of classified info" which is worse than "understandably mistaken leak of classified info" which is worse than "ill advised but legal dissemination of nonclassified/declassified info" which is worse than "debatably wise but legal dissemination of nonclassified/declassified info" which is worse than "reasonable and legal dissemination of nonclassified/declassified info" which isn't bad at all.

You're going to have to do much better than that.

You're right. There isn't treason here. Just a bunch of stupid people doing stupid things and creating for themselves and our country, stupid problems. Fitzgerald isn't going to try anyone for treason. That's water well under the bridge at this point. It's not treasonous to be stupid.

At least we agree that there isn't treason here. Maybe jAZ can admit that too. :toast:

patteeu
05-03-2006, 10:46 AM
It's likely not treasonous... certainly not convictably treasonous.

That's close, I'll give you partial credit. :thumb:

It certainly is impeachably (or fireably) reckless though. And possibly criminally jailable on indirect grounds.

This answer would have you failing the class and repeating it next fall, though. :shake:

I'm not sure that I would simply trivialize this as a mere act of stupidity. I think the folks involved with this aren't stupid nor do I think this was inadvertant. I think they justified their behavior in their minds (as most blindly ideological team players do) by saying that it was a matter of national security to get this spin out.

They had spun their lies so completely about Iraq's "threat" that they viewed any challenge to their grand scheme as a threat to national security. At that point, it became (in their fantasy land) a matter of the greater/lesser threat to national security.

All of this goes back to the deception and manipulation of the case for preemptive war in Iraq. Everything else was the coverup. Outing VP was a coverup for their weak case built upon lies. Lying about outing VP was a coverup for outing VP.

It's all rooted in the deception that lead to this ill-timed, ill-informed, reckless and ideologically/personally motivated war in Iraq.

On second thought, I think you might just be wasting the time of both of us by repeating the course. I think you'd better change your major. :p

jAZ
05-03-2006, 10:52 AM
My point is, if Plame was indeed working on tracking the Iranian nuclear program, was her role one that makes her outing one of minimal impact (someone else can take over her spreadsheet) or one of catastrophic impact (she was our only undercover operative who had penatrated the highest levels of the Iranian nuke program). That's a huge difference in impact. No doubt the impact was somewhere in between, but nothing about the Raw Story or MSNBC reports that I've seen indicates what her actual role was. All we have is the hyperventilating of those who choose to jump to the conclusion that the outing had a devastating impact. I mean we already knew she worked for the CIA in the nuclear proliferation area. Would her job have been any less important if she was tracking North Korean activities? Or if she was monitoring lost Soviet nukes that might fall in the hands of terrorists? All of these activities are important, but within each activity, the range of possible roles she might have had and the consequential impact of her outing vary from absolutely no damage to potentially very high damage.
I'm guessing that you aren't being dishonest here, and that you are completely unaware of "Brewster Jennings & Associates" and have not kept up the details available on this story. I'd be quite suprised by either outcome, as you have committed beliefs too strong to be justfied based upon ignorance and you don't really seem to the dishonest type.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brewster_Jennings_%26_Associates
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valerie_Plame

Career
Little is known of Plame's professional career. While undercover, she had described herself as an "energy analyst" for the private company "Brewster Jennings & Associates," which the CIA later acknowledged was a front company for certain investigations. "Brewster Jennings" was first entered into Dun and Bradstreet records on May 22, 1994, but D&B would not discuss the source of the filing. D&B records list the company as a "legal services office," located at 101 Arch Street, Boston, Massachusetts.

David Armstrong, an Andover researcher for the Public Education Center, believed that the Brewster Jennings & Associates cover had not been done convincingly and that other covers would have been established for her by the CIA. [3]

Former CIA official Larry C. Johnson, who left the CIA in 1989, indicated Plame had been a "non-official cover operative" (NOC). He explained: "...that meant she agreed to operate overseas without the protection of a diplomatic passport. If caught in that status she would have been executed." [4] Later, he wrote that "The law actually requires that a covered person 'served' overseas in the last five years. Served does not mean lived. In the case of Valerie Wilson, energy consultant for Brewster-Jennings, she traveled overseas in 2003, 2002, and 2001, as part of her cover job. She met with folks who worked in the nuclear industry, cultivated sources, and managed spies. She was a national security asset until exposed by Karl Rove and Scooter Libby."[5]

patteeu
05-03-2006, 11:14 AM
I'm guessing that you aren't being dishonest here, and that you are completely unaware of "Brewster Jennings & Associates" and have not kept up the details available on this story. I'd be quite suprised by either outcome, as you have committed beliefs too strong to be justfied based upon ignorance and you don't really seem to the dishonest type.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brewster_Jennings_%26_Associates
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valerie_Plame

Career
Little is known of Plame's professional career. While undercover, she had described herself as an "energy analyst" for the private company "Brewster Jennings & Associates," which the CIA later acknowledged was a front company for certain investigations. "Brewster Jennings" was first entered into Dun and Bradstreet records on May 22, 1994, but D&B would not discuss the source of the filing. D&B records list the company as a "legal services office," located at 101 Arch Street, Boston, Massachusetts.

David Armstrong, an Andover researcher for the Public Education Center, believed that the Brewster Jennings & Associates cover had not been done convincingly and that other covers would have been established for her by the CIA. [3]

Former CIA official Larry C. Johnson, who left the CIA in 1989, indicated Plame had been a "non-official cover operative" (NOC). He explained: "...that meant she agreed to operate overseas without the protection of a diplomatic passport. If caught in that status she would have been executed." [4] Later, he wrote that "The law actually requires that a covered person 'served' overseas in the last five years. Served does not mean lived. In the case of Valerie Wilson, energy consultant for Brewster-Jennings, she traveled overseas in 2003, 2002, and 2001, as part of her cover job. She met with folks who worked in the nuclear industry, cultivated sources, and managed spies. She was a national security asset until exposed by Karl Rove and Scooter Libby."[5]


I understand that we have Larry Johnson's vague version of what she did, but I'm not willing to take an obvious partisan's word for it. Besides, even his version doesnt really tell us much about the impact her outing would have. Furthermore, if the outing was intentional and either authorized or legal, it's not at all clear that any impact there might have been wasn't outweighed by the benefit of outing her.

The fact that this leak doesn't seem to excite the administration combined with the fact that it doesn't seem to have captured much of the special prosecutor's interest after he has presumably had the opportunity to dig much deeper into it than either of us, argue for the proposition that this isn't the devastating leak that you, and Taco, and all the other anti-Bush bloggernauts want it to be.

jAZ
05-03-2006, 11:44 AM
The fact that this leak doesn't seem to excite the administration combined with the fact that it doesn't seem to have captured much of the special prosecutor's interest after he has presumably had the opportunity to dig much deeper into it than either of us, argue for the proposition that this isn't the devastating leak that you, and Taco, and all the other anti-Bush bloggernauts want it to be.
Are you really factoring in the opinion of the administration (the leaker) in judging how damaging the leak is?

ROFL

patteeu
05-03-2006, 11:54 AM
Are you really factoring in the opinion of the administration (the leaker) in judging how damaging the leak is?

ROFL

The "administration" isn't a single person, but yes, I am. The President is the guy we elected to make foreign policy tradeoffs that include diplomacy, intelligence gathering, and military action among other factors. The "administration" is also in a much better position to know exactly what Ms Plame's role at CIA was (and therefore what impact her outing had) than we are.

jAZ
05-03-2006, 12:23 PM
The "administration" isn't a single person, but yes, I am. The President is the guy we elected to make foreign policy tradeoffs that include diplomacy, intelligence gathering, and military action among other factors. The "administration" is also in a much better position to know exactly what Ms Plame's role at CIA was (and therefore what impact her outing had) than we are.
So you just turn your own brain off? That's powerful citizenship right there.

mlyonsd
05-03-2006, 12:27 PM
So you just turn your own brain off? That's powerful citizenship right there.

I'll get excited about it when Fitzgerald gets excited about it.

Taco John
05-03-2006, 12:39 PM
FWIW, I consider "malicious leak of classified info" worse than "reckless leak of classified info" which is worse than "understandably mistaken leak of classified info" which is worse than "ill advised but legal dissemination of nonclassified/declassified info" which is worse than "debatably wise but legal dissemination of nonclassified/declassified info" which is worse than "reasonable and legal dissemination of nonclassified/declassified info" which isn't bad at all.


ROFL


Thanks man... You just made my day.

Taco John
05-03-2006, 12:42 PM
The "administration" isn't a single person, but yes, I am. The President is the guy we elected to make foreign policy tradeoffs that include diplomacy, intelligence gathering, and military action among other factors. The "administration" is also in a much better position to know exactly what Ms Plame's role at CIA was (and therefore what impact her outing had) than we are.


You've got a point there... Bush is the Decider afterall...

patteeu
05-03-2006, 01:07 PM
So you just turn your own brain off? That's powerful citizenship right there.

No. My brain tells me that the outing of Plame was small potatoes in terms of national security given the way that her identity was being casually handled, the way reporters who received the information say that they don't believe a crime was committed, and based on the lack of apparent interest of the special prosecutor. If and when more information comes out, I reserve the right to revise my position.

I guess jumping to conclusions that match your political biases without supporting evidence and having absolute certainty in those conclusions is what you think of as good citizenship?

patteeu
05-03-2006, 01:08 PM
ROFL


Thanks man... You just made my day.

I aim to please. :)