Notes on the Atrocities
Like a 100-watt radio station, broadcasting to the dozens...

Wednesday, July 23, 2003  

I guess it's finally time to delve into this Plame affair. Tom's been following this thing like a lazer, and he's got a very nice timeline up at Just One Minute. (Nice work, Tom--with this you may make large mammal.) I've printed out the relevant materials, and now I'm off to lunch to, ah, digest it.

[1:22 pm]
All right, I've perused the documents and think I've got it sorted out. The issue at hand is two-fold. First is the revelations by Joseph Wilson regarding the Iraq-Niger connection. In February of 2002, he traveled to Africa and discovered the uranium claim was bogus. No more necessary on that thread--you know where it ends up.

The second issue involves possible White House payback to Wilson for continuing to point out the CIA knew as early as a year before the State of the Union about the bogusness (bogiosity?) of the Niger claim. The payback was this: "administration officials" outed his wife, Valerie Plame, who was an undercover CIA agent. They did so in conversations with Robert Novak, which he revealed on July 14.

The big question on the second issue was whether the source of the outing was really the administration or other "government officials" (read: the CIA). This is significant because it's another link back to abuse of power and lying by the White House. (Tom also questions Krugman's interpretation of events, painting him as a low-down slanderer who can't quote an article without misreading half the meaning. If Bush is my windmill, Krugman is his.)

All of this is interesting, and may finally lead to some congressional investigations. It's subtle and obscure and hard to put together, though, so I don't know if it can be sustained as the kind of story that sells newspapers. (Not that it's been used to sell many newspapers yet, either. A Google News search turns up 14 lone mentions.)

posted by Jeff | 12:36 PM |
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