Monday, July 18, 2005


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The Media Told Rove? Novak on the Record

What may have struck folks as the strangest thing about the Plame affair, that every reporter has been threatened with or sent to jail except the guy who wrote the original article, Robert Novak, is starting to make sense to me. Matt Cooper has fingered Rove but Rove still has an out: the murkiness of his critical conversation with Novak on July 9, 2003. Newsweek's Howard Fineman now reports that Novak called Rove to ask:

"What did Rove make of the story, which Novak had gotten from what he later called a person who was "no partisan gunslinger," that Wilson had been sent to Niger at the behest of his wife, Valerie Plame? Rove's reply is in dispute. According to a later column written by Novak, Rove said, "Oh, you know about it." Rove's version, made public by a source close to him, is less solid: "I heard that, too." Whatever the exact words were, they were good enough to give Novak the confirmation he thought he needed."

In other words, now Rover only confirmed what Novak already knew. Since Fitzgerald is leaving Novak out of the picture, the media gets to play "he-said-she-said" forever, folks get bored, and it goes away. Vintage Rove.

But there's that pesky public record.

On Sept. 30, 2003 on Crossfire Novak said:

"In July I was interviewing a senior administration official on Ambassador Wilson's report when he told me the trip was inspired by his wife, a CIA employee working on weapons of mass destruction."

In defense of the White House Novak also said that Rove didn't call him, he called Rove. And in a July 22nd article in Newsday Novak said, referring to Plame:

"I didn't dig it out, it was given to me. They thought it was significant, they gave me the name and I used it."

It's all there, yep. These are the quotes Democrats should be reading around the clock on the House and Senate floor, demanding the special prosecutor do his job. What kind of investigation is it when the man closest to the crime is the only one not being questioned?

The familiar shell game razzle-dazzle is also in full swing. One: it wasn't Rove, it was the media. Two: Plame wasn't really a secret agent, so no harm done. But even Time acknowledges the damage, Nacy Gibbs writing:

"Whatever the damage to Plame, there remains the cost paid by the CIA generally. In the wake of the disclosure, foreign intelligence services were known to have retraced her steps and contacts to discover more about how the CIA operates in their countries."

Foreign intelligence services, like Pakistan's, are riddled with Al Qaeda sympathizers. This is already our biggest problem in the war on terror: we don't know who to trust. Now they all think back to whoever it was they had seen having lunch that American businesswoman over the last 30 years, Plame was her name? We'll just ship those WMD parts out a diferent way. Oh that guy? He's as good as dead. It won't be spectacular. Something will just happen to him.

Larry Johnson, former counter-terrorism official at the CIA, said on the McNiel-Lehrer Newshour after the scandal broke in 2003:

"This not an alleged abuse. This is a confirmed abuse. I worked with this woman. She started training with me. She has been under cover for three decades. She is not as Bob Novak suggested a "CIA analyst." Given that, I was a CIA analyst for 4 years. I was under cover. I could not divulge to my family outside of my wife that I worked for the CIA until I left the Intelligence Agency on Sept. 30, 1989. At that point I could admit it. The fact that she was under cover for three decades and that has been divulged is outrageous. She was put undercover for certain reasons. One, she works in an area where people she works with overseas could be compromised...For these journalists to argue that this is no big deal... and if I hear another Republican operative suggesting that, well, this was just an analyst. Fine. Let them go undercover. Let's put them overseas. Let's out them and see how they like it...I say this as a registered Republican.

Then the third and last shell in the shell game, Rove will be hard to convict under the narrowly-crafted law which forbids identifying a CIA operative. Forget that law; let's try another one, that of "betraying the state into the hands of a foreign power." I'd say Al Qaeda is a foreign power. Where is that from? It's part of the legal definition of treason.

Jerry Springer Says the T Word

Jerry Springer on Air America Radio is relentlessley engaging the Bushies in the spin war over Valerie Plame, calling this so-called "leak" what it is: treason. This should mean a lot more than Rover resigning; we're talking big jail time. The newspapers hardly mention that Plame was no ordinary agent. She was charged with flushing out weapons of mass desruction. Now the Republican talking point is moving desperately to insisting that because Plame spent time in an office at CIA HQ in Langley, Virginia, she couldn't have been all that much of a secret agent. This is absurd. Maybe I'm way off and know nothing, but didn't James Bond ever go to HQ to talk to M? Does some of your fellow CIA employees knowing who and what you are mean it's an open secret to everyone? Plame and husband Joe Wilson have acknowledged shunning the Washington cocktail party circuit for reasons of professional discretion. Is Al Qaeda likely to have the resources to put a tail on everyone in Washington just to see if they head in the general direction of CIA headquarters?

Keep sending the talking points to Springer and the Air America folks, as they have almost singlehandedly forced the media to look beyond the Bush version of what this constitutes. They would have you think this is just another "leak" that brings up "freedom of the press" issues. Bullshit. Rove should go to Leavenworth for the rest of his life. If we are attacked with a WMD, it might be that much easier because of him. George Bush is doing nothing less than protecting a traitor to the national security.

Plame Game Heating Up

Things are getting HOT, Valerie Plame, London bombing, Bush record-low polls, and a full month of August with Congress not in session when anything can fill the news hole. When politicians fall. This can be our chance to impeach this Bush once and for all, especially if the Brits throw Blair out on his ass like they should have a long time ago. After all they're not the mindless morons Americans are. The Spanish set the example: you fuck up, you go. The Iraq war is backwashing to our shores, just as hero and L.A. airport terror-plot-foiler Richard Clarke said it might. Instead of staying OVER THERE - (flypaper, remember? Let's attack an irrelevant country so we can fight them "there" rather than here?)- now they are COMING here, better trained in the ways of killing than ever.

Bush could have surrounded Tora Bora with regular army divisions, decimated top Al Qaeda command and probably bin Laden, and "broken the crockery if necessary" (Mike Scheuer's words for sacrificing the current Pakistani government) crossing into the Paki mountains and tribal areas to chase down whatever sons of bitches were left. And the world would not have peeped a word in protest, with the towers still smoldering on TV. But NOOO! The spoiled rich kid had to exploit the attack to go get the guy he thinks "tried to kill [his] dad", so he could be a "war prezdent" and make his oil buddies fantastically happy, all at once! Boy is there are lot of money here! A new Halliburton millionaire a minute! For them's what showed us proper respect in the past, of course...

The Valerie Plame Kafka House Theatre -- The stage is dark, we see a man being beaten by another man as a woman helplessly looks on. Sirens..running feet...police..shouting..then instead of arresting the beater they arrest the bystander woman. Novak wrote the column but it's Judy Miller who's in jail. Never mind. The point missed by the papers is: What is an "agency operative on weapons of mass destruction?" These are Novak's words when he fingered her. The news stories are predictably bland, freedom of the press blah blah then somewhere in the middle, Oh yea, Plame was some kind of CIA operative.

Matt Cooper's article for the Time website confirms it: "Valerie Plame is a CIA official who monitors the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction." Monitors? As in, finds out where they are and who's getting them before they can kill us? I thought WMD was what this whole Iraq war was about! And they're blowing up an information network? That's why this is no "leak", the spin the White House is putting out and the media is so graciously trying to perpetuate. This is high treason. There is proportion missing here. A reporter might uncover that the Army is wasting millions of dollars worth of blankets letting them mold. Then there's telling the Germans that Omaha Beach was going to be the spot on D-Day. Both "secrets" are not the same.

Even Jerry Springer at Air America tried but didn't get it right. Said this "leak" put Plame in danger. It's worse; it put US in danger, every single American. Every WMD that gets into the country now is one that Plame's network, who knows, might have caught. We are not talking jail time here. We're talking hanging or the firing squad, by all rights and in any sane world. The links to articles and hard news sources are all somewhere on this blog ( ) or at

Keep the heat on, keep the facts coming to the folks at Air America! The heat under Bush is up, time to turn it up yet another notch. Tell everyone, repeat after me: Valerie Plame stopped weapons of mass destruction weapons of mass destruction weapons of mass destruction...

How Long Will Prosecutor Protect Novak?

Even the New York Times seems to be getting it when when it says of the Valerie Plame prosecution:

"[Special prosecutor Patrick] Fitzgerald has focused solely on Ms. Miller and Mr. Cooper. Mr. Cooper wrote about Ms. Plame only after the Novak column had identified her, and Ms. Miller, though she conducted interviews on the subject, has never written about it. Mr. Novak's role in the investigation, including whether he has cooperated with the authorities, remains a mystery."

So when do we get to Novak?

As for this being spun as freedom of the press issue, comparable to Watergate, I'll say it again. Plame was no ordinary "leak"; she was an undercover specialist in weapons of mass destruction. She was finding out where they were before they got to us. In a world filled with so-called national security secrets, she was the real thing. There is a difference. It is always ok to embarrass politicians. It is never ok to divulge the the beach chosen for the landing on D-Day. Someone in the Whitehouse needs to go to jail.

Bush's War is Training Terrorists

Red state yahoos like the "flypaper" theory of Iraq, which says the bottom line, whether attacking Iraq was justified or not, is that we are fighting them in the Middle East rather than here, because the war draws terrorists like flies to flypaper. I have long advocated an alternative "incubator" analogy, which says all we are doing is giving terrorists live-fire training which they can then bring to our shores (see my book "The Elephant in the Room.") Now a CIA reports says that:

Iraq may prove to be an even more effective training ground for Islamic extremists than Afghanistan was in Al Qaeda's early days, because it is serving as a real-world laboratory for urban combat...the war was likely to produce a dangerous legacy by dispersing to other countries Iraqi and foreign combatants more adept and better organized than they were before the conflict.

Richard Clarke's article "Ten Years Later" speculates that another terror attack here in the US might involve people who got their most valuable training thanks to George Bush. The larger point is that the war on terror is not for simple-minded boobs who can only grasp "fight them there rather than here." That is a product of fear and wishful thinking that wants to believe we can keep it from coming here by lashing out at enough of the wrong people.

Why They Hate Us Part 963: Guantanamo Prisoners Innocent

Contrary to what Dick Cheney says, that Guantanamo holds only the "worst of the worst" and not exactly car thieves, The Nation reveals that according to the Pentagon itself, "between 70 percent and 90 percent of [prisoners] had been swept up at random." This is a piece by Gore Vidal, "Something Rotten in Ohio," which for other reasons too is a must-read. Al Franken has said on the air on his Air America Radio show that, on one of his visits to Iraq, an American soldier at Abu Ghraib pointed to a cellblock and called the men there "maybes." As in maybe guilty. Someone gets a stick rammed up them first, then proclaimed innocent (see story below) then Bush says they hate us for our freedom, and not for anything we are doing too them. If we looked at the results of his policies only, George Bush could be called a one-man terrorist factory.

Poor George. Everyone turning against him. Colonel Douglas MacGregor on Iraq:

"We arrested people in front of their families, dragging them away in handcuffs with bags over their heads, and then provided no information to the families of those we incarcerated. In the end our soldiers killed, maimed or jailed thousands of Arabs, 90 percent of whom were not the enemy. But they are now."


Folks; if the information presented in this blog and website makes you want to do something, we are in a week-long campaign to make sure these facts and documentation are seen by the good folks at Air America Radio, the only free speech major media outlet left in America. Please go to their website and log-in to the commentator blogs and post this website address and some of the facts presented, and send them emails. For example the fearless Randi Rhodes is at Mike Malloy is at

Prisoner Details Rape with Stick by American Intelligence

Harpers Magazine has published an account "by Hussain Abdulkadr Youssouf Mustafa, a fifty-one-year-old Palestinian man who plans to sue the US Government for cruel and unusual punishment." After his ordeal Mustafa was told he was innocent. This account is reproduced in the blog Prairie Weather.

An American soldier took me blindfolded, with my hands tightly cuffed, and with my ears plugged so I could not hear properly and my mouth covered so that I could only make a muffled scream. Two soldiers forced me to bend down, and a third pressed my face down on a table. A fourth soldier then pulled down my trousers. They forcibly rammed a stick up my rectum. It was excruciatingly painful.

US Troops Deaths No longer News

You may have noticed that US troop deaths in Iraq are getting buried deeper and deeper in the paper. An AP report today details violence throughout the country and then not until the eigth paragraph deigns to mention: "The US military, meanwhile, reported that five US soldiers had been killed in two days." Five in two days? In the eighth 'graph? No it's not just Iraqis getting killed; our boys are still dying at a steady rate. Turning the corner, yeah right.

Trial of Saddam Implicates Bush's Dad

A June 7th New York Times article "Desert Graves Yield Evidence to try Hussein" (here reprinted in the Der Speigel website) describes the misdeeds of the bloody tyrant:

It was late one afternoon in May 1988, in the middle of the Anfal. Mr. Askary said nearly 50 of the 150 people who died were his relatives. As he rushed to help, he came across his mother's body lying by a stream.

Which means the Reagan/Bush administration's well-documented support of Saddam at the time ought to come into play. Norm Dixon in Counterpunch:

According to William Blum, writing in the August 1998 issue of the Progressive, Sam Gejdenson, chairperson of a Congressional subcommittee investigating US exports to Iraq, disclosed that from 1985 until 1990 "the US government approved 771 licenses [only 39 were rejected] for the export to Iraq of $1.5 billion worth of biological agents and high-tech equipment with military application ...

"The US spent virtually an entire decade making sure that Saddam Hussein had almost whatever he wanted... US export control policy was directed by US foreign policy as formulated by the State Department, and it was US foreign policy to assist the regime of Saddam Hussein."

If the media does it's job, this could get interesting. Circulate this tidbit so they know that we know that they know that...

NewsWire, June 5, 2005
Congressman tiptoes around the "I"[mpeachment] word

Item: a short piece in this week's Boston Phoenix, by Congressman Barney Fag, er, Frank (remember that? Rep. Dick Armey of Texas once called him that then tried to say it was a slip of the tongue, to which Barney quipped "no one ever mistakenly called my mother Mrs. Fag...) In the article Frank all but says that in order to get out of Iraq first we need to impeach George Bush.

"We’ll be there as long as George Bush remains president, I’m afraid, because it’s not going very well, and they have gotten themselves entangled in a mess that they don’t know how to get out of" Frank said.

Then, in the last line of the piece Frank stated: "If the Democrats do well in 2006, it could cause the Republicans to think, "Maybe we don’t want this burden around our neck in 2008."

The comment coincides with a "Spring Offensive" letter-writing campaign by The group says "people across the country will be able to send personal customized letters to the representatives from each of their districts and states. To send a letter, just click here."

FBI Memo corroborates Newsweek allegations of Koran desecration

A declassified FBI memo now shows that desecration of the Koran in Afghanistan, Iraq and Guantanamo has been independently confirmed and is old news going back to at least 2002. Story here.

"Military Families Speak Out" Speech Organ Shut Down Due to Right Wing Harassment

The list-serve used by "Military Families Speak Out," an anti-war organization of military families with loved ones serving in Iraq, has been forced to shut-down due to hacking and harassment for its anti-war position. An email from organizer Jeff McKenzie states:

Dear Participants in the List-serve of Military Families Speak Out,

We deeply regret that, due to recent problems with the list-serve that allowed un-authorized people to get in, get access to Military Families Speak Out members' personal email addresses and then harass them about their positions on the war; that we will be shutting down the MFSO list-serve effective immediately.

We are so very sorry for having to take this decision. We know the list serve has, for the most part, provided a safe space for MFSO members and those who support us to discuss issues and share pain and tears as well laughter and joy.

Military Families Speak Out is at

War is Ugly

Warning: graphic. Operation Truth is run by soldiers to take the media gloss off the war and the US government's treatment of our troops. This short video is part of a compilation of images and first-hand stories in an attempt to give the public a true picture of the war, whatever your position on it may be. Another Iraq video making the blog rounds: "Take them out, dude: pilots toast hit on Iraqi 'civilians'"

Neo-Nazis Censor Civilian Casualties Website

Click here to see what you come up with if you go to the top hit on Yahoo for "Iraq civilian casualties".


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