I just finished watching Fair Game with Naomi Watts and Sean Penn, which is based on what became known as the Valerie Plame Affair. Earlier in the week, while listening to POTUS Press Pool with Julie Mason (on Siruis XM), Valerie Plame Wilson was a guest on the show, primarily to discuss her new novel about a CIA operative. I had heard of the Valerie Plame Affair back when it happened over ten years ago, but really didn’t know much about it. inwasnt interested in politics back then. Suffice it to say, I’d heard the name Valerie Plame and CIA, but did not know what it was really referring to.
Now I do. And I’m shocked. And disturbed. And disillusioned.
It isn’t that I believe the government is some innocent, noble institution. It is very flawed and secretive and probably corrupt in many ways. But to believe that a CIA operatives name, in this case Ms. Plame’s, was deliberately leaked because the president, or his advisors, were so determined to defend their own wrong conclusions about WMD’s, and discount the reports of the people that were sent to determine if WMD’s existed, it’s astounding.
If you aren’t familiar with what happened to Valerie Plame Wilson and her husband Joe Wilson, then I recommend that you do some reading.
The decision to leak her name as a covert CIA operative started after Mr Wilson wrote this article entitled, What I Didn’t Find In Africa. July 6, 2003 in which he speaks about his mission for the CIA. He was sent to Niger, Africa to investigate whether Niger had sold yellowcake uranium to Iraq. He found no evidence of such a deal. The White House disregarded his reports and continued to believe Iraq had amassed WMD’s (assumptions that were eventually proven false after the war).
It didn’t take long for Mr. Wilton’s article to start its own sort of war, a war he wasn’t aware was being waged against him by his own government. This war didn’t only take apart his life but the career of his CIA operative wife, Valerie Plame Wilson. The article that revealed her identity followed on July 14, 2003, written by Robert Novak It only took 3 long years to discover that Robert Armitage was the person who actually gave Plame’s name to Novak in what he claimed was inadvertant.
I do not believe an error of that magnatitude, which could cost someone their life, their career could ever be inadvertant. That type of information is not something you play with and someone at that level of government would definitely have known that.