Plame came out or How the CIA made mistakes #1, #2 etc

Involuntarily. She came out.

So much lies in this MSM. Examples.

Truth or dare #1: Libby, in contrast, was telling the truth, the truth he believed, even though it may have been false in fact. (This is false. Libby knew the truth and just lied on the dates of the leaks)

Truth or Dare #2: Who was the culprit behind the Plame Affair? Novak? No. Russert? No. Colin Powell? Yes. Powell served up Libby to protect his deputy and to undermine VP Cheney. Thus, Powell gave false testament, and Libby never lied to the FBI.  (Libby was confronted with the logs on the Miller convos.)

The Critical Mistake was the CIA’s use of a non intel source (Joe Wilson) to do a covert mission. Joe Wilson had no business in an intel operation.

Valerie offering him is Mistake #2. Keep Intel and home separate.

Mistake #3 Walpole releases the false Niger story again after it was corrected..

Mistake #4 Not fact checking a critical intel used in a President’s State of Union speech used as a basis of war.

Mistake #5 VP not fact check when confronted by media allegation of Niger documents are false.

There are dozens more, but you get the idea.


Let’s recap:

12 February 2002: Vice President Cheney reads a DIA report on alleged Niger-Iraq uranium sale and asks for the CIA’s analysis.

12 February 2002: Valerie E. Wilson (aka Valerie Plame), a C.I.A. analyst working in its Counterproliferation Division, sends a memo to the deputy chief of the C.I.A.’s Directorate of Operations stating that her husband has good contact with the former Prime Minister and Director of Mines in Niger as well as other contacts who might prove useful in shedding light on the supposed Niger-Iraq uranium contract.

13 February 2002: An operations official cables an overseas officer seeking approval of Joe Wilson investigation.

26 February 2002: Joseph C. Wilson travels to Niger at the request of the CIA. Joe Wilson meets with the former minister of mines, Mai Manga, who said he knew of no sales of uranium between Niger and rogue states. He states the mines are closely monitored from mining to transport loading making it at least very difficult if not impossible for a rogue state to obtain uranium through this channel. Joe Wilson indicates that in his conversation with former Niger Prime Minister, Ibrahim Assane Mayaki, the PM indicated that he was not aware of any sales contract with Iraq but that in June 1999 he was approached by a businessman, asking that he meet with an Iraqi delegation to discuss expanding commercial relations. (Note: Niger’s two largest exports are uranium and livestock ). Wilson indicated he thought the meeting took place but that Mayaki, who was aware of the illegality of such activities, let the matter drop due to the sanctions on Iraq.

5 March 2002: Wilson is debriefed by two C.I.A. officials at his home. He never files a written report. Wilson says he reported to the CIA that Iraqi attempts to purchase uranium from Niger are unlikely. Any deal about uranium could not possibly have taken place. Nobody at the State Department African Bureau had ever believed in the Niger story. Two other reports supported his views. Some CIA officials told the United States Senate Select Committee on Intelligence that Wilson’s information was neutral, others said Wilson’s information lent support to the contention Iraqi sought uranium from Niger.

6 October 2002: The National Security Council sent a sixth draft of a speech President Bush was to give in Cincinnati to the CIA. The draft contained the statement about Iraq “having been caught attempting to purchase up to 500 metric tons of uranium oxide.[21] Tenet and other CIA officials directed the text be removed from the speech as the certainty regarding the accuracy of the claim was weak.

7 October 2002: George W. Bush gives a speech in Cincinnati in which he, for the first time, lays out in detail the case for disarming Iraq. In that speech he asserts, “If the Iraqi regime is able to produce, buy, or steal an amount of highly enriched uranium a little larger than a single softball, it could have a nuclear weapon in less than a year.” It is later revealed (in July 2003) that George Tenet had intervened to remove language from that speech referencing Iraq’s alleged pursuit of Nigerien uranium. More specifically, Deputy National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley was reported to be a main target of Tenet’s entreaties.

9 October 2002: Elisabetta Burba, an Italian journalist for Panorama magazine, part of the media empire of Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, contacts the U.S. Embassy in Rome, requesting authentication of some documents of interest that she has. These documents allegedly represent a contract by Iraq to purchase uranium “yellowcake” from Niger. The owner, not Elisabetta Burba, reportedly wants 15,000 euros for them. Panorama refuses to pay that amount unless they are first verified as authentic.

15 October 2002: The embassy in Rome faxes the documents to the State Department’s Bureau of Nonproliferation in Washington, which in turn provided copies to the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR). The INR’s nuclear analyst will later decide they are a hoax in January 2003. During an inter-agency meeting the next day, analysts from the Defense Intelligence Agency, the U.S. Department of Energy, the National Security Agency, and the CIA all obtain copies of the documents. None of the four CIA analysts in attendance remembers taking a copy, which later would show up in a CIA vault during a postmortem search.

9 December 2002: By this date the uranium claim, which George Tenet had removed from Bush’s speech in Cincinnati, Ohio, in October 2002, had found its way back into a State Department “fact sheet.” Following that, the Pentagon requests an authoritative judgement from the National Intelligence Council as to whether or not Iraq had sought uranium from Niger.

January 2003: The National Intelligence Council, responding to the Pentagon’s request, drafts a memo addressing the Niger uranium story in which they conclude the story is baseless. The memo arrives at the White House prior to the State of the Union address given later that month.

6 January 2003: The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) asks the United States for any information related to the claim that Iraq had purchased yellowcake uranium from Niger.

13 January 2003: The INR’s nuclear analyst sends email to colleagues providing rationale on why the Yellowcake document is a hoax. The CIA’s nuclear analyst does not have the documents in question and requests a copy.

16 January 2003: CIA received copies of the original foreign language documents on the Niger-Iraq contract.

24 January 2003 CIA official Robert Walpole sends NSC deputy Stephen Hadley, Scooter Libby, Robert Joseph and other officials a memorandum in favor of the idea that Iraq had sought to obtain the uranium. The memo cites the language in the (later redacted) Oct. 2002 intelligence estimate.

27 January 2003: During a National Security Council meeting at the White House, someone hands George Tenet a hardcopy of President Bush’s State of the Union address. Tenet is, he later testifies, too busy to read it and hands it to an aide who passes it to a top official in the CIA intelligence directorate who was also too busy to read it.

28 January 2003: President George W. Bush gives his State of the Union speech. Toward the end Bush states, “The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa.” The sentence becomes known as the “16 words.” In his State of the Union speech, Bush also declares, “The International Atomic Energy Agency confirmed in the 1990s that Saddam Hussein had an advanced nuclear weapons development program, had a design for a nuclear weapon and was working on five different methods of enriching uranium for a bomb.”

3 March 2003: The IAEA tells the U.S. Mission in Vienna the Niger documents were obvious fakes.

8 March 2003 Joseph Wilson appears on CNN, suggesting the U.S. government knew the Niger claims were wrong. He does not mention his trip.

11 March 2003 As response to the 8 March 2003 Rumsfeld tasking, a CIA senior-level report concludes “We do not dispute the IAEA Director General’s conclusion–last Friday before the UN Security Council–that documents on Iraq’s agreement to buy uranium from Niger are not authentic.

16 March 2003 Vice President Dick Cheney appears on Meet the Press. He denies ElBaradei’s assertion that the Niger documents were forgeries.

20 March 2003: Iraq invasion begins.

2 May 2003 Joseph Wilson and New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof meet on a panel. Over breakfast, Wilson tells Kristof about the Niger trip, and says Kristof can write about it, but not name him.

6 May 2003 The New York Times publishes a column by Nicholas Kristof disputing the accuracy of the 16 words in the president’s State of the Union address. The column reports that, following up on a request from the vice president’s office, an unnamed ambassador investigated the allegations regarding Iraq’s efforts to buy uranium from Niger. Kristoff writes that in early 2002, the ambassador had reported to the CIA and State Department that the allegations were unequivocally wrong.

19 May 2003 Ari Fleischer announces his resignation as White House Press Secretary, to take effect in July 2003.

29 May 2003 Scooter Libby asks Undersecretary of State Marc Grossman for information about the unnamed ambassador’s trip. Grossman does not know about it and sets to find out. He first asks Richard Armitage, who has not heard either. Grossman then emails Carl Ford and Walter H. Kansteiner, both of whom know about Wilson and who inform Grossman of details of the trip. Grossman informs Armitage. Grossman calls Joe Wilson, who he knows from the foreign service. Grossman calls Libby and tells him that Wilson is the unnamed ambassador.

1 June 2003 During the first week of June, Washington Post reporter Walter Pincus makes an inquiry about Joseph Wilson’s trip, with the CIA public affairs office. That office contacts the Counterproliferation Division (CPD) at the CIA, (Valerie Wilson’s unit), but no report is produced.

9 June 2003 Scooter Libby learns that President George Bush is interested in the State of the Union speech and the Kristof article.

10 June 2003 A classified State Department memorandum, “Niger/Iraq Uranium Story”, generally called “the INR memo”, is sent by Carl Ford to Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs Marc Grossman. In a paragraph marked “(SNF)” for secret, non-foreign, the memo refers to “Valerie Wilson, a CIA WMD manager and the wife of Joe Wilson”.

10 June 2003 Robert Grenier’s executive assistant sends out an email within the CIA, seeking information on the Wilson trip, “on behalf of the Vice President.

11 June 2003 At a deputies meeting Undersecretary of State Marc Grossman tells Scooter Libby that “Joe Wilson’s wife works for the CIA”, and that State Department personnel are saying that Wilson’s wife was involved in the planning of the trip .

11 July 2003 John McLaughlin, Deputy Director of Central Intelligence, meets with Dick Cheney. McLaughin is prepared with answers to Cheney’s quesions about the Wilson trip.

11 July 2003 Cheney and Libby meet for 20 minutes at Cheney’s office.

11 July 2003 Bill Harlow calls Catherine Martin about the trip. Harlow tells Martin about Joseph Wilson and that his wife works for the CIA. Martin conveys to Cheney and Libby the information about Wilson and Wilson’s wife.

11 July 2003 Walter Pincus speaks with Scooter Libby on the phone. They talk about the Wilson trip.

12 June 2003: During a telephone call, Cheney told Libby that Wilson’s wife  works for the CIA’s counter-proliferation division. Libby understands the information to have come from George Tenet. The New York Times reports on notes that suggest Mr Cheney passed on Ms Plame’s identity to Libby in a previously undisclosed June 12 2003 conversation in 2005 article.

12 July 2003 Walter Pincus of the Washington Post publishes “CIA Did Not Share Doubt on Iraq Data”, describing Joseph Wilson’s trip without naming the retired Ambassador. Pincus reports that according to an administration official neither Dick Cheney or his staff learned of its role in spurring the mission until it was disclosed by New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof on May 6. Scooter Libby is a source for the article, including the information that “an aide” of Cheney was the impetus for the trip.

13 June 2003 Armitage tells Woodward. Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward interviews Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage at Armitage’s office. Armitage tells Woodward that Wilson’s wife works for the CIA on weapons of mass destruction as a WMD analyst.

14 June 2003 Scooter Libby meets with CIA briefer Craig Schmall at Libby’s home. Libby asks Schmall why the Ambassador was told it came about from a VP question. Schmall’s handwritten notes indicate that Libby referred to “Joe Wilson” and “Valerie Wilson”

17 June 2003 CIA Director George Tenet receives a memo from analysts that there is no credible information that Iraq pursued uranium from abroad.

18 June 2003 CIA Director George Tenet shares with Dick Cheney and Scooter Libby the findings of the June 17 memo

19 June 2003 Spencer Ackerman and John Judis publish an article in the New Republic, anonymously quoting Wilson that administration officials “knew the Niger story was a flat-out lie.”

23 June 2003 Libby tells Miller. New York Times reporter Judith Miller meets with Scooter Libby in Libby’s office. Libby tells Miller that Wilson’s wife might work at a bureau of the CIA.

3 July 2003. Joe Wilson writes a controversial op-ed questioning the accuracy of the George W. Bush administration’s rationale for the 2003 invasion of Iraq entitled “What I Didn’t Find in Africa” published in The New York Times on  July 3, 2003.

7 July 2003 Scooter Libby and Ari Fleischer have lunch. Libby tells Fleischer that Wilson was sent by his wife, who works in the counterproliferation division of the CIA. Libby refers to her by name, Valerie Plame, and says the subject is “hush hush” and “on the QT”. Fleisher does not take the information to be classified.

7 July 2003: Colin Powell receives a copy of a 10 June memo naming Valerie Wilson as Joe Wilson’s wife and as a CIA officer, taking it with him on a trip on Air Force One with President Bush. The paragraph identifying Mrs. Wilson is marked “(S-NF)”, signfying its information is classified “Secret, Noforn.” Noforn is a code word indicating that the information is not to be shared with foreign nationals. Condoleezza Rice, Colin Powell, Ari Fleischer, Walter H. Kansteiner, III, and Andrew Card are on the trip, among others.

Sometime before 8 July 2003 Robert Novak has a conversation with Richard Armitage (Deputy Assistant Secretary of State). In that conversation he is told for the first time that Wilson’s wife works for the C.I.A. [Armitage didn’t tell Novak her name; subsequently, after his August 2006 public disclosure that he was the “inadvertent” leak, Armitage has asserted that he did not know her name at the time.] Novak uses an edition of Joseph C. Wilson’s biography in Who’s Who to identify by her maiden name Valerie Plame. According to the reporters Michael Isikoff and David Corn, Armitage’s leak was “inadvertent, and the Intelligence Identities Act hadn’t been violated.”

8 July 2003  Scooter Libby meets with New York Times reporter Judith Miller over a two-hour breakfast at the St. Regis Hotel in Washington, D.C. They discuss CIA operative Valerie Plame (Libby indictment p. 7). Miller’s notes contain the phrase “Wife works at Winpac” (Miller in NYT). Libby will later testify that the purpose of the meeting was to disclose information from the NIE to Miller, and that the disclosure was authorized by his superiors.

8 July 2003: Robert Novak has a phone conversation with Karl Rove in which C.I.A. agent Plame is discussed, according to an unnamed source who had been told not to talk about the case. Novak is reported to have told Rove the name of the agent as “Valerie Plame” and her role in Wilson’s mission to Africa. Rove is reported to have told Novak something to the effect of, “I heard that, too.” or “Oh, so you already know about it.” Rove reportedly told the grand jury that at this time he had already heard about Wilson’s wife working for the CIA from another journalist, but is unable to remember who that was.

8 July 2003: Lewis Libby meets with Judith Miller and tells her about Plame’s work at the CIA. According to Libby’s later grand jury testimony, he told Miller at this meeting that the Niger uranium claim had been a “key judgement” of the October 2002 NIE (still classified at that time), and that Cheney had instructed him to do so. This was false; the Niger claim was not in fact one of the “key judgements” headlined, bolded, and bulleted in the first pages of the intelligence estimate. Later, after testifying to a Federal grand jury in October 2005, Miller writes in a retrospective account published in the New York Times that on this date (and four days later, on 12 July 2003), Libby “played down the importance of Mr. Wilson’s mission and questioned his performance.”

8 July 2003 Robert Novak interviews Richard Armitage at Armitage’s office. Armitage tells Novak that Wilson’s wife is a CIA employee. According to Armitage, Novak asked him at the end of the interview why the CIA had sent Wilson to Niger. His recollection is that he replied, “I don’t know, but his wife works out there.” According to Novak at trial, Armitage says that Wilson was suggested by wife Valerie who was employee in CPD at the CIA

9 July 2003 Speaking to a White House press pool in Pretoria, South Africa, the second stop on the president’s Africa tour, Press Secretary Ari Fleischer says the State of the Union address should not have included the reference to Iraqi attempts to acquire uranium from Niger. Fleischer says: “With the advantage of hindsight, it’s known now what was not known by the White House prior to the speech. This information should not have risen to the level of a presidential speech.”

9 July 2003 Robert Novak and Karl Rove speak by phone, ostensibly about the promotion of Frances Fragos Townsend to deputy national security adviser. Novak turns to the subject of Valerie Wilson. Novak claims to Rove that he knows that Joseph Wilson had been sent on the trip to Niger at the urging of Ms. Wilson. In Novak’s telling, Rove responds by saying “Oh, you know about it.” In Rove’s telling, Rove responds by saying “I heard that, too.”

10 July 2003  Libby calls Tim Russert of NBC. Libby complains about coverage of the Niger issue by Chris Matthews. Libby and Russert do not discuss Wilson’s wife, though Libby will later testify that they did.

10 July 2003–11 July 2003: Novak called Bill Harlow, then CIA spokesman, to confirm information regarding Plame and Wilson. According to Novak, Harlow denied that Plame “suggested” that Wilson be selected for the trip, and Harlow stated instead that CIA “counter-proliferation officials selected Wilson and asked his wife to contact him.” According to Harlow, he “warned Novak in the strongest terms he was permitted to use without revealing classified information”, that Wilson’s wife had not authorized the mission and that if Novak did write about it, her name should not be revealed. Harlow said that after Novak’s call, he checked Plame’s status and confirmed that she was an undercover operative. He said he called Novak back to repeat that the story Novak had related to him was wrong and that Plame’s name should not be used. According to Harlow, however, he did not tell Novak directly that Plame was undercover because that information was classified. According to Novak, not only did Harlow not tell Novak that Plame was undercover, he actually told Novak that “she probably never again would be given a foreign assignment but that exposure of her name might cause ‘difficulties.'” Novak states that if he had been told that disclosure of Plame’s name would endanger her or anyone else, he would not have disclosed the name.

11 July 2003 George Tenet issues a statement taking the heat for the 16 words, and saying the decision to send Wilson was the CIA’s alone.

12 July 2003  Fleisher calls Walter Pincus of the Washington Post. Fleisher tells Pincus that the White House had not paid attention to Wilson’s trip to Niger because it was set up as a boondoggle by his wife, an analyst with the agency working on weapons of mass destruction. “The Bush administration official, according to attorneys familiar with his testimony, told a federal grand jury that he made the claim to the Post reporter and others in an effort to undermine Wilson’s credibility”

12 July 2003 Libby calls Time magazine reporter Matthew Cooper from Andrews Air Force base. Libby tells Cooper that Dick Cheney had not been responsible for Wilson’s mission. Speaking on the record, Libby denies that Cheney knew about or played any role in the Wilson trip to Niger. Speaking on background, Cooper asks Libby if he had heard anything about Wilson’s wife sending her husband to Niger. Libby replies, “Yeah, I’ve heard that too.”Catherine Martin and Libby aide Jenny Mayfield are present for the call.

12 July 2003 Washington Post’s Pincus conversation between an unnamed administration official and an unnamed Washington Post reporter (Pincus). The official (Ari Fleischer) told the reporter that Iraq war critic Joe Wilson’s wife Valerie Plame worked for the Central Intelligence Agency’s (CIA) nonproliferation division, and suggested that Plame had recommended her husband to investigate reports that Iraq’s government had tried to buy uranium in Niger. This came out in 23 October 2003 article by Pincus.

14 July 2003 . Responding to that op-ed, Robert Novak publicly revealed Wilson’s wife to be a CIA “operative” named “Valerie Plame” in his Washington Post column on July 14, 2003.

17 July 2003 Matthew Cooper writes on that government officials have told him Mr Wilson’s wife is a CIA official monitoring WMD. Another article appears in Time magazine’s July 21 print issue.

23 July 2003 Libby has conversations with Judith Miller.  21 October 2005 Reports surface that Miller belatedly gave prosecutors her notes of a meeting with Mr Libby only after being shown White House records showing that the two had met as early as June 23 2003. “The Washington Post reports “… court records of 2006 showed that Libby denied to a grand jury that he ever mentioned Plame or her CIA job to then-White House press secretary Ari Fleischer or then-New York Times reporter Judith Miller in separate conversations he had with each of them in early July 2003. The records also suggest that Libby did not disclose to investigators that he first spoke to Miller about Plame in June 2003, and that prosecutors learned of the nature of the conversation only when Miller finally testified late in the fall of 2005.”

30 July 2003 Condoleezza Rice “grudgingly” admits that the contents of the speech were her responsibility; she never offered her resignation

28 September 2003 CIA Director George J. Tenet calls on the Justice Department to investigate the leak.

29 September 2003: White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan says about Karl Rove: “He wasn’t involved,… The president knows he wasn’t involved… It’s simply not true.” “The President has set high standards, the highest of standards for people in his administration. He’s made it very clear to people in his administration that he expects them to adhere to the highest standards of conduct. If anyone in this administration was involved in it, they would no longer be in this administration.” McClellan went on to say: “The president believes leaking classified information is a very serious matter and it should be pursued to the fullest extent by the appropriate agency and the appropriate agency is the Department of Justice.”

30 December 2003 US attorney Patrick Fitzgerald is named as special counsel to investigate whether a crime was committed in the naming of Ms Plame.

22 July 2004: Bill Getz’s column in the Washington Times alleges that Valerie Plame had been “outed” twice prior (and long prior) to her “outing” by Robert Novak. In it he states that Valerie Plame’s C.I.A. “affiliation” was disclosed to Moscow in the mid 1990s by a Moscow spy. The second “outing” occurred when the C.I.A. sent confidential documents to the U.S. Interests Section of the Swiss Embassy in Havana. The documents were supposed to be sealed from the Cuban government but apparently not and their contents gleaned by Cuban agents.

9 August 2004 US district judge Thomas Hogan rejects claims that the US constitution’s provision for freedom of the press protects Cooper from testifying and finds Cooper and Time in contempt of court. Time magazine appeals the ruling.

12 August 2004 The grand jury summons New York Times reporter Judith Miller, who gathered material for a story but did not write one. The New York Times says it will fight subpoena

24 August 2004 Cooper agrees to give a deposition after Lewis Libby, vice president Dick Cheney’s chief of staff, personally releases Cooper from a promise of confidentiality.

7 October 2004 Judge Hogan holds Miller in contempt.

13 October 2004 Cooper and Time are held in contempt.

15 February 2005 The appeals court rules against Miller and Cooper. Both Time magazine and The New York Times appeal to the supreme court.

27 June 2005 The supreme court refuses to intervene.

1 July 2005 Time magazine agrees to comply with a court order to turn over Cooper’s notes, email and other documents. Cooper and Miller continue to refuse to divulge sources.

6 July 2005 Judge Hogan jails Miller for refusing to divulge her source.

15 July 2005 Presidential aide Karl Rove testifies to the grand jury that he learned the identity of the CIA operative originally from journalists, then informally discussed the information, without using Ms Plame’s name, with Cooper.

17 July 2005 In Time magazine, Matt Cooper discusses his testimony before the grand jury investigating the leak. He says Rove never referred to Valerie Plame by name, but that Cooper did learn from that conversation with Rove that Wilson’s wife worked for the CIA and was involved in WMD issues.

29 September 2005 After 85 days behind bars, Miller is released from the city jail in Alexandria, Virginia, after agreeing to testify before a grand jury. She says her source has “voluntarily and personally released me from my promise of confidentiality”.

30 September 2005 Miller testifies at the federal courthouse in downtown Washington, ending her silence in the investigation.

11 October 2005 Miller testifies again and turns over notes of a previously undisclosed phone conversation with Mr Libby.

16 October 2005 Miller writes about her testimony in a New York Times article, saying she can’t recall who told her Ms Plame’s name. She says Mr Libby told her that Mr Wilson’s wife worked for the CIA’s Weapons Intelligence, Non-Proliferation, and Arms Control (WINPAC) unit. Judith Miller writes that notes of her conversations with Lewis Libby, Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief of staff, suggested that the two had discussed Plame’s job at the CIA but not her name. Miller wrote Plame’s name in the same notebook she used when taking notes during her interviews with Libby, but said she cannot remember who gave her the CIA operative’s name.

21 October 2005 Reports surface that Miller belatedly gave prosecutors her notes of a meeting with Mr Libby only after being shown White House records showing that the two had met as early as June 23 2003.

25 October 2005 Citing lawyers connected to the case, The New York Times reports that Lewis Libby, Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief of staff, first learned about Plame from a conversation with Cheney in the weeks before her identity became public in 2003. Libby’s notes from that conversation, which took place June 12, 2003, contradict Libby’s testimony to a federal grand jury that he first learned about Plame from journalists, lawyers told the paper. The previously undisclosed notes are now in the possession of prosecutors.

28 October 2005: Lewis “Scooter” Libby charged with two counts of perjury, two counts of making false statements and one count of obstruction of justice. He immediately resigns as Dick Cheney’s Chief of Staff

16 November 2005: According to the Washington Post, Assistant Managing Editor Bob Woodward indicated he learned of Valerie Plame’s identity as a C.I.A. operative from a senior administration official a month before it was revealed in Robert Novak’s column:

“I was first contacted by Fitzgerald’s office on 3 November after one of these officials went to Fitzgerald to discuss an interview with me in mid-June 2003 during which the person told me Wilson’s wife worked for the CIA on weapons of mass destruction as a WMD analyst.” The three separate Bush administration officials communicated their desire that Woodward feel free to discuss their individual conversations with him regarding any topic related to and only related to Fitzgerald’s investigation. This revelation from an official, who was not Libby, would make someone else and not Libby the first person to “out” Valerie Plame.

7 April 2006: The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that court documents in the federal grand jury investigation include Libby testimony that Vice President Cheney specifically directed him to release classified and bias-selected contested conclusions on Iraq WMD’s from war-favoring sources cited in the National Intelligence Estimate, with the explicit goal to discredit Joseph Wilson as critic of the buildup to war. Although not a specific order to expose Plame, Libby’s testimony alleges both Bush and Cheney desired him to compromise state secrets for the purpose of discrediting criticism of the Bush administration.

13 July 2006 In a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court, Valerie Plame and her husband, Joseph C. Wilson, a former U.S. ambassador, accused Cheney, Rove and I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby of revealing Plame’s CIA identity in seeking revenge against Wilson for criticizing the Bush administration’s motives in Iraq. It was amended in September 2006 to Include Armitage.

29 August 2006, former U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage revealed publicly that Novak had based his disclosure of Mrs. Wilson’s CIA identity on then still-classified information that Armitage initially gave him while Armitage was still serving in the State Department.

6 March 2007 Jury returns guilty verdict on four of five counts, convicting Libby of obstruction, perjury and lying to the FBI.

2 July 2007, President Bush commutes Libby’s prison sentence. Libby will not have to serve time behind bars, but he must still pay the fine and serve two years probation.


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