October 25, 2003

Naming of agent 'was aimed at discrediting CIA'

As www.buzzflash.com points out the NYTwits and the
WASHPs, not to mention SeeNotNews, MustNotBeSeen and
Faux News, churned out 24x7 coverage of the
investigation into Bill Clinton's oral office sex, BUT
they seem to have misplaced this story. Well, in
fairness and accuracy, I will clarify and expand. Oh
no, they reported the "news" yesterday, yeah, that
"the Senate is attacking the CIA for its
inaccuracies," but of course that is a LIE, the Senate
Republicans, who have control of the committees, are
attacking the CIA to divert attention from the actual
source of the intel manipulation (i.e. "all the
_resident's men" and the White House au pair).
Understand? They reported the cover story, not the
story. They ate once again straight from Rove's
hand...Meanwhile, here is real news from a
conservative UK business newspaper, the Financial
Times. FT, of course, is not only the premiere
business newspaper in the UK, it is also the best
business newspaper in America. And like the Economist
(the best news weekly magazine in America), it proves
that good journalism has nothing to do with right or
left philosophy, it has to do with integrity and a
society where their press is still free (not only of
government censorship, which we are approaching more
openly in the US, but also Corporatism which has
wholly devoured the air waves and too a massive degree
the big city newspapers as well)...Hopefully, the
resistance within the intelligence community, the
military and the foreign policy establishment will
continue to fight the Bush cabal and their foolish
miklitary adventurism, hopefully the "US mainstream
news media" will at least to continue to *somewhat*
honesttly report the tragic and pointless death of US
soldiers in Iraq, they are certainly missing the
opportunity to report on the full scope of an
extraordinary confrontation with government, one that
shakes the very premise of the Republic...


Naming of agent 'was aimed at discrediting CIA'
By Edward Alden in Washington
Published: October 25 2003 5:00 | Last Updated:
October 25 2003 5:00

The Bush administration's exposure of a clandestine
Central Intelligence Agency operative was part of a
campaign aimed at discrediting US intelligence
agencies for not supporting White House claims that
Saddam Hussein was reconstituting Iraq's nuclear
weapons programme, former agency officials said

In a rare hearing called by Senate Democratic leaders,
the officials said the White House engaged in pressure
and intimidation aimed at generating intelligence
evidence to support the decision to make war on Iraq.

Senior administration officials in July revealed the
name of Valerie Plame, a former clandestine CIA
officer and the wife of Joseph Wilson, who was sent by
the CIA in 2002 to assess claims that Iraq was trying
to buy enriched uranium from Niger.

Mr Wilson had angered the White House by concluding
that there was no evidence to support the claim, and
then going public with that information after the war.

The Justice Department has launched a criminal
investigation to determine the source of the leak,
which in effect ended Ms Plame's career as a CIA
operative and may have endangered agency sources who
came in contact with her.

Vince Cannistraro, former CIA operations chief,
charged yesterday: "She was outed as a vindictive act
because the agency was not providing support for
policy statements that Saddam Hussein was reviving his
nuclear programme."

The leak was a way to "demonstrate an underlying
contempt for the intelligence community, the CIA in

He said that in the run-up to the Iraq war, the White
House had exerted unprecedented pressure on the CIA
and other intelligence agencies to find evidence that
Iraq had links to Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda and
that Baghdad was trying to build a nuclear bomb.

While the intelligence agencies believe their mission
is to provide accurate analysis to the president to
aid policy decisions, in the case of Iraq "we had
policies that were already adopted and they were
looking for those selective pieces of intelligence
that would support the policy", Mr Cannistraro said.

In written testimony, he said that Vice-President Dick
Cheney and his top aide Lewis Libby went to CIA
headquarters to press mid-level analysts to provide
support for the claim. Mr Cheney, he said, "insisted
that desk analysts were not looking hard enough for
the evidence". Mr Cannistraro said his information
came from current agency analysts.

Other agency officials, who said they had been
colleagues of Ms Plame when she was trained as a CIA
agent, said the leak could do severe damage to the
morale of the intelligence agencies. "The US
government has never before released the name of a
clandestine officer," said Jim Marcinkowski, a former
CIA case officer. "My classmates and I have been

Senate Democrats are pressing for an independent
investigation of the intelligence leading up to the
war, and are calling for a special counsel to
investigate the leak.

The Republican-controlled Senate intelligence
committee is preparing a highly critical report of the
pre-war intelligence, the Washington Post reported
yesterday, which will conclude that the CIA overstated
any evidence about Iraq's weapons programmes and ties
to terrorism.

But the report will not look at the issue of whether
the White House put pressure on the CIA to reach such

The administration has refused to appoint an
independent special counsel on the leak investigation,
and Federal Bureau of Investigation officials said
this week that John Ashcroft, attorney-general and
close political ally of President George W. Bush, was
involved in the investigation.

Larry Johnson, a former CIA analyst who said he voted
for Mr Bush and contributed to his campaign, said the
White House needed to authorise a more independent
investigation. "Unless they come up with a guilty
party, it will leave the impression that the
administration is playing politics."

Posted by richard at October 25, 2003 11:17 PM