AS THE SEEMINGLY ENDLESS SPIDERWEB OF LIES SPUN BY former Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV unravels, the media has gone out of its way to question the credibility of…Karl Rove. Despite Rove’s demonstrable non-leak of Valerie Plame’s non-secret identity, the dogs continue to gather, hungry for a second term scandal, while the Wilsons’ blatant self-promotion erodes whatever basis they had for a story in the first place. Perhaps Joe Wilson’s two biggest whoppers were his claim to have spoken out because of his deep, non-partisan commitment to “truth,” and his inconsolable remorse that his wife’s closely guarded anonymity had become “collateral damage” in the Bush administration’s war against him. What is at risk of being lost in the media hype of Karl Rove’s “leak” is that Plame and Wilson had deep-seated ideological opposition to the Niger trip they set up, Plame apparently spiked that trip in advance, and she had long ago blown her status as a “secret” CIA agent.
Valerie Plame – the Soros Connection
In fact, Plame blew not only her own cover but that of a CIA front – in order to make a political donation to a leftist Democrat. The politics of non-partisan “centrist” Ambassador Wilson’s wife is perhaps best expressed by her $372 donation to the George Soros front group Americans Coming Together. Plame made her grant to ACT – the part of the “Shadow Party” entrusted with getting out John Kerry’s vote – in October 2004. However, the “undercover” agent previously used her CIA name, “Ms. Valerie E. Wilson” – and also disclosed her home address on the form – to make a $1,000 donation to Al Gore in 2000, listing her job as an “Analyst” at “Brewster-Jennings & Associates.” Thus, her hard-driving political agenda and dismissive regard for national security exposed her fellow agents to even greater risk.
The political philanthropy of Joseph C. Wilson IV similarly lines up with his wife’s leftist agenda. He also gave $2,000 to Gore in 2000 (although he took back $1,000 of that), as well as $1,000 to Sen. Ted Kennedy, and $500 to Rep. Charlie Rangel in the same election cycle. In 2002, his employment prospects dimmed while his patronage increased. Thus, he donated $1,000 to Hillary Clinton’s HILLPAC; $250 to Rep. Nick Rahall, D-WV; and $500 for Idaho Democrat Alan Blinken’s failed bid for the Senate in 2002. In 2004, he donated $2,000 to John Kerry’s presidential campaign, where he landed a job as a consultant. Wilson’s left-wing defenders cite his $1,000 donation to George W. Bush, in 2000 and the $1,500 he gave to Rep. Ed Royce, R-CA, over the course of several years as proof of his bipartisanship. Others believe Wilson was covering his bases for a federal job in 2000, and have also noted Royce sits on the Committee on International Relations.
Joseph Wilson literally cried crocodile tears at the exposure his left-wing political activism has brought him and his CIA operative wife. He sat, wringing his hands at the fate that could befall an agent whose identity becomes known. “Naming her this way would have compromised every operation, every relationship, every network with which she had been associated in her entire career,” he shrieked. However, Plame’s identity was, in the words of Robert Novak, “not much of a secret.” Cliff May states he was told of Plame’s work – as a desk jockey at Langley, to which job she drove everyday – in a blasé manner, as though all Washington insiders knew of it. Perhaps they did; Plame acknowledges she “outed” herself to Joseph Wilson at roughly the time of their first kiss. Given the current dating-and-mating habits of Beltways divorcees, she’s likely kissed others, perhaps using her CIA job as foreplay at each rendezvous. As noted above, she also exposed her Agency name and cover job on her political donation to Al Gore in 2000. In fact, other national media outlets had named her as an agent before Karl Rove’s disclosure to Novak. Further, the CIA did nothing to prevent Robert Novak from printing her name in his syndicated column, indicating they did not consider the exposure vital – perhaps grudging recognition of the fact that this genie had long been out of the bottle. Still at a National Press Club meeting in 2003, standing alongside Daniel Ellsberg, Wilson choked up, breaking down as he looked his wife in the face and vowed, “If I could give you back your anonymity…I would do it in a minute.” Sorry, Val, you can’t get your virginity back.
Since the inadvertent “leak” of her name, Wilson and Plame have comported themselves as the perfect victims all the while seeking out the brightest spotlight the media could shine on them. A week before working himself into tears with Ellsberg, Joe Wilson told NBC’s Tim Russert, “my wife…would rather chop off her right arm than say anything to the press, and she will not allow herself to be photographed.” Plame has since posed for a picture for Vanity Fair reporter (exposing both arms) and spoke with the magazine’s reporter “on a not-for-attribution basis.” In an MSNBC interview, Wilson described his wife as “obviously nonplussed at this unwanted attention brought again on our family.” Yet two weeks ago, this Mother Bear met with London Telegraph reporter Philip Sherwell at her home, allowing him to publish the names of her five-year-old twins (Samantha and Trevor) in the international media. Not even all the mainstream media have bought the Wilsons’ righteous victimology shtick. In an aside to his readers immediately before this, the MSNBC interviewer notes, “Up until recently, a tongue-in-cheek photo in Vanity Fair was the only well-known image of her. But now the Wilsons have gone public, and new photos show what the former undercover spy looks like.” Indeed, you can see Plame and Wilson, for instance, in this picture, taken at a swanky Georgetown eatery hocking Wilson’s book.
A Pre-Emptive Strike on Pro-War Intelligence
Like the Wilson family’s forlorn reaction to having media attention and a book deal thrust upon them, neither was the Plame/Wilson decision to go to Niger to check out the yellowcake uranium what it seemed. The duo set out to spike the Niger uranium story from the first. Upon hearing the CIA had opened an investigation into whether Saddam Hussein had attempted to purchase ingredients for a doomsday device from the sub-Saharan African nation, Plame lined up her hubby for the trip, knowing his political disposition. Upon telling Wilson of his assignment, she referred to the to the Niger claim as “this crazy report.” Inspector Wilson then, by his own account, spent “eight days drinking sweet mint tea and meeting with dozens of people.” Despite his grueling interrogations, often conducted at poolside, he did not find anything whatever of value. He then went home and held his fire for months after President Bush cited the possible Niger yellowcake deal to write his op-ed. Wilson then claimed the documents Bush used to prove the yellowcake connection were forged, because “the dates were wrong and the names were wrong.” However, the CIA didn’t have those files until eight months after Wilson’s African vacation. Wilson sheepishly stated he may have “misspoken.”
The Officials Who Knew Not Joseph
“Misspoken” could designate every remark Wilson has ever made. His entire public testimony is a tear of lies.
Although he clearly intimated Vice President Dick Cheney sent him on his fact-finding mission, Cheney said he had never heard of Wilson before his scathing op-ed on Niger. Wilson responded by telling CNN’s Wolf Blitzer: “Well, look, it's absolutely true that neither the vice president nor Dr. Rice nor even George Tenet knew that I was traveling to Niger. What they did, what the office of the vice president did, and, in fact, I believe now from Mr. Libby's statement, it was probably the vice president himself” who sent him after all. OK….
When it came to light that Wilson got his job because of his wife’s recommendation, Wilson retorted in his book, “Valerie had nothing to do with the matter. She definitely had not proposed that I make the trip.” Instead, he avers, Plame’s “supervisors asked her to contact me.” In fact, Plame wrote a CIA higher-up that her hubby enjoyed “good relations with both the Prime Minister and the former Minister of Mines [of Niger], not to mention lots of French contacts” – surprised? – “both of whom could possibly shed light on this sort of activity.” Upon reading this, Wilson responded, “I don't see it as a recommendation to send me”! Plame followed up with another suggestion that her husband get the job, which he did. In fact, she had snagged a similar trip to Niger for hubby in 1999. The fact that an apparently incompetent, apparently underqualified individual got the nod for an all-expense-paid trip to Africa due to nepotism has received no greater attention from “Good Government” liberals than, say, Bill Clinton’s appointing his wife to head up a health care task force.
Wilson has dissembled that upon returning to the States, he wrote a report of his activities. In fact, he never laid pen to paper, instead being debriefed by others at the CIA.
Although he claims there is no proof of Iraq’s intent to purchase yellowcake uranium, as President Bush said in his 2003 State of the Union Address. the CIA interpreted Wilson's own findings to support that notion. The analysts who heard Wilson’s oral report said it “lent more credibility to the original Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) reports on the uranium deal.” Their written report of his activities reveals that Niger Prime Minister Ibrahim Mayaki told him he believed Iraq had made an overture to purchase uranium in the past. Further, the British stand by their assertion, which was the actual basis for the “16 Words” in the president’s State of the Union Address.
Since penning his book and posing for a half-dozen pictures with his super-secret undercover wife, Joseph Wilson had faded into the recesses of the national memory where mediocrity should have permanently confined him. However, the latest investigation into Karl Rove’s non-leak has brought him roaring back onto the public stage, this time lying that Karl Rove identified his wife by name. According to Time reporter Matt Cooper’s e-mail, it was Cooper who called Rove, about another topic, and it was Cooper who abruptly changed the subject to Joe Wilson. At that point, Rove advised him not to “get too far out on” the story. Cooper’s e-mail states, the vice president had nothing to do with Wilson’s incompetent mission; “it was, KR said, wilson’s [sic.] wife, who apparently works at the agency” who worked it out. Having seen this e-mail, Wilson stood athwart reality, insisting:
My wife's name is Mrs. Joseph Wilson. It is Mrs.Valerie Wilson. And he named her. He identified her. So that argument I don't believe stands the test of – stands the smell test.
You could cut the irony with a knife.
Despite the current anti-Rove witchhunt, the Left has yet to present evidence of any criminal wrongdoing. According to the strictures of the 1982 Intelligence Identities Protection Act, to break the law one must reveal the name of a covert agent, must know that person is a covert agent who has been abroad within the past five years, the CIA must acknowledge it is trying to conceal the identity of this agent, and the disclosure must “clearly represent a conscious and pernicious effort to identify and expose agents with the intent to impair or impede the foreign intelligence activities of the United States.” Clearly, Rove’s comments do not meet this standard. He seems not to have known her name. She never had a “deep cover” story and certainly didn’t behave as though confidentiality were her prime goal. Moreover, Wilson notes in his book that Plame (sorry, “Mrs. Joseph Wilson”) last returned from overseas in 1997, six years before Robert Novak’s column identified her as an operative.
These facts are well-known to the media. Thirty-six “mainstream” media organizations – including the White House Correspondents – filed an amici curiae brief on behalf of Judith Miller pointing all these facts out. Yet they continue howling for Karl Rove’s head. Like George W. Bush’s non-scandal at the National Guard, this is becoming the non-story that refuses to go away.
Wilson and Plame are run-of-the-mill, leftist climbers who have found a constituency on the Bush-hating Left willing to believe anything. They temporarily shook loose the fetters of anonymity to cast doubt upon the president of the United States. However, alternate media outlets such as talk radio and FrontPage Magazine have shined light upon the background of Wilson and Wilson, revealing their agenda and falsehoods for what they are. Despite this, there remains a portion of the far-Left committed to believing every Bush-bashing story floated in the media, even if it means entering Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Wilson’s fantasyland.