Tuesday, July 22, 2003

CalPundit has verified that someone in the Bush administration did something very, very bad:

A few days ago I blogged about a David Corn column in The Nation in which he suggested that the White House had exposed Joseph Wilson's wife, Valerie Plame, as a CIA operative in order to discredit Wilson himself. But Corn's column was hedged and it was unclear exactly who exposed Plame and exactly what Plame's role at the CIA was. Today, Wilson provides some additional information:

In an NBC News exclusive, Wilson says his family is the subject of a smear campaign. Wilson tells NBC News the White House deliberately leaked his wife’s identity as a covert CIA operative, damaging her future career and compromising past missions after he criticized the administration on “Meet the Press” and in the New York Times.

So according to Wilson, his wife was a covert operative, and it was White House officials who outed her.

Ugly, very ugly....
To put it mildly. Whoever did this is in very deep trouble, or should be... and as Calpundit's earlier entry pointed out, the sources are at the very least at the "deputy" level, and would not have leaked without the say-so of one of Bush's cabinet-level appointees?

So it raises the question: who was behind this?

(It wouldn't have been Tenet, obviously)

Was it Rice, who would be in line to go if the 16 words continue?

Was it Cheney, who was very likely the one pushing this thing?

Was it Ridge, although that seems unlikely?

Was it Bush himself?

And the key question: no matter who it is, will the same right-wingers that were all over Clinton's various supposed crimes come out against a person that was responsible for something far, far more serious?

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