Tuesday, July 12, 2005

John Podhoretz takes on the latest "scandal"

Karl Rove "outed" Plame? I don't think so.

Podhoretz just about covers it here:

There's no mistaking the purpose of this conversation between Cooper and Rove. It wasn't intended to discredit, defame or injure Wilson's wife. It was intended to throw cold water on the import, seriousness and supposedly high level of Wilson's findings.

While some may differ on the fairness of discrediting Joseph Wilson, it sure isn't any kind of crime.

Rove was suggesting to Cooper that that folks lower down in the CIA than its own director commandeered the process so that the husband of one of their own could get the gig. And the husband in question then went and misrepresented his findings to various journalists (The Washington Post's Walter Pincus and The New York Times's Nicholas Kristof) and then in his own now-famous Times op-ed.

This Rove-Cooper conversation discredits Wilson, not Plame. In fact, nothing we know so far was done either with the purpose of exposing or even the knowledge that these remarks would be exposing an undercover CIA operative.

But Plame's undercover status at the time was and is a little questionable in any case. How undercover could she have been when her name was published at the time as part of Joseph Wilson's own biography online (see cpsag.com/our_team/wilson.html)?

So if the offense wasn't against Plame, what of the offense against Wilson? There was no offense. As many of Joe Wilson's own hottest defenders would no doubt argue in relation to President Bush, exposing a liar is not only not a crime, it's a public service.

And Wilson lied. Repeatedly.


Anonymous said...

Then again, there's that pesky little problem with a US ATTORNEY'S INVESTIGATION. You remember him, right? He's the one that the Republicans here love to praise, except when it comes to what he's doing now in DC? So he put a reporter in jail, threatened several others with prison, deposed half the White House for nothing?

leucanthemum b said...

One would think that, considering the expressed (anti-administration) views of the journalist who has opted for jail rather than reveal her sources, she'd have immediately jumped on the opportunity to "give up" Rove, if he were guilty of a crime... especially since he has already signed documents releasing any reporter from any such privilege.

IF the AG finds anything actionable in all this (except, perhaps, on the part of Wilson or Plame), I will be heartily surprised.