With todays release of Michael Isikoff’s article for Newsweek, it appears that the Karl Rove conspiracy charges are non-existent:
July 18 issue – It was 11:07 on a Friday morning, July 11, 2003, and Time magazine correspondent Matt Cooper was tapping out an e-mail to his bureau chief, Michael Duffy. “Subject: Rove/P&C,” (for personal and confidential), Cooper began. “Spoke to Rove on double super secret background for about two mins before he went on vacation …” Cooper proceeded to spell out some guidance on a story that was beginning to roil Washington. He finished, “please don’t source this to rove or even WH [White House]” and suggested another reporter check with the CIA.
Last week, after Time turned over that e-mail, among other notes and e-mails, Cooper agreed to testify before a grand jury in the Valerie Plame case. Explaining that he had obtained last-minute “personal consent” from his source, Cooper was able to avoid a jail sentence for contempt of court. Another reporter, Judith Miller of The New York Times, refused to identify her source and chose to go to jail instead.
Ok, for one thing, who in the hell writes “double super secret”? Does he have his fruit loops decoder ring beside the laptop also?
Moving on, what did Rove tell Cooper:
In a brief conversation with Rove, Cooper asked what to make of the flap over Wilson’s criticisms. NEWSWEEK obtained a copy of the e-mail that Cooper sent his bureau chief after speaking to Rove. (The e-mail was authenticated by a source intimately familiar with Time’s editorial handling of the Wilson story, but who has asked not to be identified because of the magazine’s corporate decision not to disclose its contents.) Cooper wrote that Rove offered him a “big warning” not to “get too far out on Wilson.” Rove told Cooper that Wilson’s trip had not been authorized by “DCIA” Director George Tenet or Vice President Dick Cheney. Rather, “it was, KR said, wilson’s wife, who apparently works at the agency on wmd [weapons of mass destruction] issues who authorized the trip.” Wilson’s wife is Plame, then an undercover agent working as an analyst in the CIA’s Directorate of Operations counterproliferation division. (Cooper later included the essence of what Rove told him in an online story.) The e-mail characterizing the conversation continues: “not only the genesis of the trip is flawed an[d] suspect but so is the report. he [Rove] implied strongly there’s still plenty to implicate iraqi interest in acquiring uranium fro[m] Niger …
So Rove never named Plame, he told Cooper to be wary of Wilson since the trip was not authorized by Tenet, rather it was pushed through by his CIA wife as reported by the Washington Post:
The report states that a CIA official told the Senate committee that Plame “offered up” Wilson’s name for the Niger trip, then on Feb. 12, 2002, sent a memo to a deputy chief in the CIA’s Directorate of Operations saying her husband “has good relations with both the PM [prime minister] and the former Minister of Mines (not to mention lots of French contacts), both of whom could possibly shed light on this sort of activity.” The next day, the operations official cabled an overseas officer seeking concurrence with the idea of sending Wilson, the report said.
Wilson has asserted that his wife was not involved in the decision to send him to Niger.
“Valerie had nothing to do with the matter,” Wilson wrote in a memoir published this year. “She definitely had not proposed that I make the trip
The report said Plame told committee staffers that she relayed the CIA’s request to her husband, saying, “there’s this crazy report” about a purported deal for Niger to sell uranium to Iraq. The committee found Wilson had made an earlier trip to Niger in 1999 for the CIA, also at his wife’s suggestion.
The report also said Wilson provided misleading information to The Washington Post last June. He said then that he concluded the Niger intelligence was based on documents that had clearly been forged because “the dates were wrong and the names were wrong.”
“Committee staff asked how the former ambassador could have come to the conclusion that the ‘dates were wrong and the names were wrong’ when he had never seen the CIA reports and had no knowledge of what names and dates were in the reports,” the Senate panel said. Wilson told the panel he may have been confused and may have “misspoken” to reporters. The documents — purported sales agreements between Niger and Iraq — were not in U.S. hands until eight months after Wilson made his trip to Niger.
Also the email stated that Rove implied that there was still evidence “to implicate iraqi interest in acquiring uranium from Niger” which a Senate Intelligence Committee report deemed to be quite true. For another good rundown of the report go here.
So in the end you have Rove telling Cooper to basically watch out for Wilson since he is a lying hack. End story.
Based on this Newsweek report you have the following sequence of events:
1. Wilson calls the NYT and Time, which run a story saying the intelligence is made up.
2. Cooper called Rove to get his take on it. Rove tells him to watch out for Wilson, tells him that Wilsons story about who sent him to investigate the intelligence was a lie.
3. Cooper suggests in the original email that another reporter check with the CIA. I’m guessing that other reporter is Miller.
4. Miller calls sources at the CIA who out Plame.
5. The NYT runs the Wilson story even tho they knew the story could be bogus (big surprise there)
On a side note, can people stop saying that Plame was an “undercover agent”, she wasn’t. According to 50 USC 426 a covert agent must have been UNDERCOVER & OVERSEAS within the past five years.
According to Vanity Fair, Plame was recalled and was back in Washington no later then Feb, 1997. The leak occured in 2003. 6 years had past since she was recalled so, no crime was committed.
On another side note, WTF is up with this CIA analyst calling intelligence “crazy”, doesn’t this show some prejudice here? You bet your ass it does. So this anti-Bush CIA analyst sells her anti-Bush husband to go check out intelligence she thinks is “crazy” before investigating it.
And finally, Boghie has some choice words for Miller, who is now in jail of her own choosing:
Plame worked full time in Washington D.C.
She was not a 007 in Iran.
I want the media to be shoved hard toward responsible journalism. The use of anonymous sources is reprehensible. I am tired of breathless leaks from slugs in parking garages. Back in the Watergate era, the use of anonymous sourcing was minimal and measured. Now, every article from the NYT contains sources from the deep. They are abusing a privilege the citizens of America awarded them, ? not one the Constitution provides them. They are abusing the privilege to abuse the Administration ? not to out massive abuses of state power.
I want to KNOW what the media ACCEPT as expert sources?