The Great Plame Mystery

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The Supreme Court decided it will not review the case of two journalists who refuse to testify before a grand jury about the leak of a CIA agent’s identity.

Time Magazine’s Matthew Cooper and The New York Times’ Judith Miller face up to 18 months in jail. Is this what it has come to –” jailing journalists? Let’s not forget where this whole dilemma began:

In an article for The New York Times, Joseph Wilson, a retired State Department official, said he traveled to Niger in 2002 by request from the CIA to investigate wether Iraq had sought uranium from Niger. Wilson reportedly told the CIA that “it is highly doubtful that any such transaction had ever taken place.”

Even so, the infamous 16 words made its way into one of the most controversial speeches, the 2003 State of the Union Address. “The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa.”

Eight days after Wilson wrote his piece, Robert Novak wrote one of his own, naming Joseph Wilson’s wife, Valerie Plame Wilson, as a CIA agent. Novak said he didn’t receive a planned leak and the CIA never warned him that revealing Wilson’s wife would endanger her.

The Washington Post reported in July 2003 that “two top White House officials called at least six Washington journalists and disclosed the identity and occupation of Wilson’s wife.”

Who should go to jail: The journalists that were told Wilson’s identity or the White House officials who passed classified information to the journalists? I applaud all the journalists that didn’t publish her identity because they knew it was a set up, unlike Robert Novak who takes anything the White House says as gold.

Instead of subpoenaing journalists, why not subpoena the White House? If the sources are two senior administration officials, surely someone in there would know, wouldn’t you, Mr. Rove?

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