Friday, July 15, 2005

"Karl, theyr'e taking the bait hook, line and sinker, just as you said they would. All we need to do now is real 'em in" Posted by Picasa


I'm beginning to wonder if this is an elaborate Rovian plan to make the Democrats and the MSM look outrageously foolish. The more that comes out about this story, the more of a non-story it becomes, while the Bush critics continue to raise the stakes and become more hysterical by the moment. It's beginning to look like they have invested in a stock that is poised to go through the floor and all they will be left with is the egg on their face:

Meanwhile, former Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV, whose wife, Valerie Plame, and her identity as a cover CIA employee is the central issue, came to the Capitol to call for President Bush to fire Mr. Rove.

"I believe it is time for Karl Rove to go and time for this president to live up to his promises that anyone involved in this leak would be fired," Mr. Wilson said during a press conference with Sen. Charles E. Schumer, New York Democrat, steps away from the Senate floor.

But the burning question here is was there really a "leak" in the first place? Consider this tidbit from the same Washington Times piece:

A former CIA covert agent who supervised Mrs. Plame early in her career yesterday took issue with her identification as an "undercover agent," saying
that she worked for more than five years at the agency's headquarters in Langley
and that most of her neighbors and friends knew that she was a CIA employee.

"She made no bones about the fact that she was an agency employee and her husband was a diplomat," Fred Rustmann, a covert agent from 1966 to 1990, told
The Washington Times.

"Her neighbors knew this, her friends knew this, his friends knew this. A lot of blame could be put on to central cover staff and the agency because they weren't minding the store here. ... The agency never changed her cover status."

Mr. Rustmann, who spent 20 of his 24 years in the agency under "nonofficial
cover" -- also known as a NOC, the same status as the wife of Mr. Wilson -- also
said that she worked under extremely light cover. In addition, Mrs. Plame hadn't been out as an NOC since 1997, when she returned from her last assignment, married Mr. Wilson and had twins, USA Today reported yesterday.

The distinction matters because a law that forbids disclosing the name of undercover CIA operatives applies to agents that had been on overseas assignment "within the last five years."

"She was home for such a long time, she went to work every day at Langley,
she was in an analytical type job, she was married to a high-profile diplomat
with two kids," Mr. Rustmann said. "Most people who knew Valerie and her
husband, I think, would have thought that she was an overt CIA employee."

Could it be that Rove knew this all along and has very cleverly allowed his critics to walk, or should I say run into the trap? Perhaps he's just standing back and allowing his enemies to destroy themselves.

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