It's Over - Rove and Bush - Worse than Watergate
Finally, after years of mounting suspicion, the truth concerning the Valerie Plame leak is coming out - it was basically confirmed by Rove's lawyer, Robert Luskin, made the the statement that his client "never knowingly disclosed classified information." (Yahoo News) Lawrence O'Donnel is calling this the "I did not Inhale" defense. The key word is knowingly. Under the Intelligence Identities Protection Act, it could mean a ten year sentence act for Rove if he knowingly revealed the Plame's name and undercover status to the media.
By telling us that Rove never knowingly disclosed classified information, Rove's lawyer is essentially confirming to us that Rove did leak Plame's identity - their defense is going to be to try and squirm around the law on the flimsy defense that Rove either assumed Plame's identity was already well known, so he assumed it was not classified information, or that he was simply unaware that her identity was classified. I simply cannot see a way that either of the of these defenses would not hold in court.
There are bigger issues at play here - From the statements of Laskin, We can pretty much conclude that Rove leaked the identity of Plame. The next thing to consider is Rove's motive for the revelation of Plame's identity. The obvious motive is the defamation of Joseph Wilson's character. Wilson was in the midst of a direct attack on Bush's campaign to convince congress and the American public that we should go to war. The campaign to go to war was based heavily on evidence that Iraq had Weapons of Mass Destruction.
Two of the primary exhibits used in the case for Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq were the yellowcake uranium sale in Niger, and the anodized aluminum tubes purchases. The anodized aluminum tubes exhibit turned out to be a joke, as several leading scientists have since stated that the tubes could not be used for uranium enrichment.
The second primary piece of evidence was the supposed yellowcake uranium sale in Niger. Joseph Wilson was ready to completely contradict the administration's claim of the yellowcake uranium sale in Niger (What I didn't Find in Africa). Since they were determined to go to war, the administration had no choice but to smear Joseph Wilson, and discredit him as a reliable source. That was the primary motive of Karl Rove's revelation of the identity of Valerie Plame. The administration could not risk losing the momentum they had for building up the case for declaring war on Iraq, so they chose to reveal the identity of plame, putting her life at risk, and destroying an undercover CIA operation. This was a deliberate act of treason.
Now let's get back to the key - By revealing the identity of Plame in order to protect the case for War in Iraq, the administration has basically admitted to the American public that they knew all along that the evidence used in the case for War in Iraq was fraudulent. When you couple this with the Downing Street Memos, (The intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy), a very strong case can be made to prove that the Bush Administration was deliberately lying to congress and the American public in an attempt to justify war. Lying to the American Public and to congress in order to justify war is itself was a breach of the False Statements Accountability Act of 1996, if not an act of treason.
Finally, one last piece of discussion is just how Rove initially obtained the information necessary to leak Plame's identity. Someone must have leaked this information to Rove. Speculation is that this information may have either originated from the office of the Vice President, Dick Cheney, either from Cheney, or Lewis "Scooter" Libby.
Another question to ask is just what the Bush Administration is hiding on Bolton? The administration desperately wants to push through the nomination of Bolton as the UN Ambassador, yet they refuse to reveal the secretive communication intercepts that Bolton received from the NSA. Is it possible that these communication intercepts have something to do with the Plame leak? Probably not, but with such a cloak of secrecy, we cannot rule it out.
Why does the Bush Administration feel that they can operate in such secrecy? How does this administration even think they can get away with operating in secrecy like this, and how does the media allow them to continue to operate under this cloak of secrecy?
It's time to put a stop to this incredible web of secrecy and deceit. The American public and the media must work together and demand an thorough investigation of PlameGate, the Downing Street Memos, and the Bolton communication intercepts. While were at it, why don't we demand the release of the records from the secret energy task force meetings with Dick Cheney back in 2001.
There ought to be a law against these sorts of things - an administration operating under a cloak of secrecy in the world's most powerful democratic nation is not a good thing. The Freedom of Information Act laws were passed for a reason. An open and honest government should be a guarantee in a free society, and the abuses of power by the Bush Administration must be put to an end.