Plame Game - The Line in the Sand + Matt Cooper and the Rogue DNC

Moved to from this post to keep the news coming:

Here's what we know. Rove's volunteer testimony (sorry Mr. Kurtz, not summoned), will be happening soon.

MEANWHILE............. Judy Miller finds more "notes" releated to her conversations with Libby.......(color me less than impressed as only Reuters is reporting this - so I'm waiting for independent colaboration from other news outlets).

Drudge now has this interesting news: "Rove Says He Wasn't Involved in CIA Leak"

"White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove told President Bush and others that he never engaged in an effort to disclose a CIA operative's identity to discredit her husband's criticism of the administration's Iraq policy, according to people with knowledge of Rove's account in the investigation.

They said Rove's denial to Bush occurred during a brief conversation in July 2003, shortly after media reports revealed that the administration critic, former Ambassador Joseph Wilson's wife, Valerie Plame, worked as a covert CIA operative.

Those with direct knowledge of evidence gathered in the criminal investigation spoke to The Associated Press only on condition of anonymity because of grand jury secrecy.

Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald is wrapping up an investigation into whether Rove; Vice Presential Dick Cheney's chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scotter" Libby; or other presidential aides divulged Plame's identity in violation of federal law.

Besides the disclosure of Plame's identity, the investigation is examining whether presidential aides mishandled classified information, made false statements or obstructed justice."

Secrecy? What secrecy? When this is done that Grand Jury will ascend directly into Heaven because it's so "holy"....


Here is the Rove "Line in the sand":

Rove said, "I never engaged in an effort to disclose a CIA operative's identity to discredit her husband's criticism of the administration's Iraq policy."

Here we see a little of the the dilemma that Fitzgerald now faces. All along the MSM has presented this case with this patented DNC talking point:

That Bush administration officials outed Plame to get back at Wilson for critcising the African yellow cake claim.

Which is why we read:

"They said Bush asked Rove to assure him he was not involved in an effort to divulge Plame's identity and punish Wilson, and the longtime confidant assured him so. He answered similarly when White House press secretary Scott McClellan asked a similar question.

Robert Luskin, Rove's attorney, declined Friday to comment on the specifics of the discussions with Bush but confirmed his client maintains _ then and now _ he did not engage in an effort to disclose Plame's identity.

Rove has told a grand jury he first learned of Plame's work for the CIA from news reporters and then discussed it with Novak and Cooper.

"Did Karl purposely set out to disclose Valerie Plame's identity in order to punish Joe Wilson for his criticism? The answer is, 'No,'" Luskin said. "That was his answer in July 2003 and in October 2003 (when he first testified.) And it remains his answer today."

"He always truthfully denied that he was never part of any campaign to punish Joe Wilson by disclosing the identity of his wife," Luskin said.

This is not "did not disclose her identity', but didn't do it to punish Wilson. The first can be explained or judicially excused because it is apparent that EVERYBODY was talking about Valerie Plame - even Joseph. So the issue of who she was and where she worked wasn't and in Fitz's eyes ISN'T the issue.

However, "conspiracy" may be another thing. Which is why people have been discussing the "punish Wilson" angle first suggested by David Corn and repeated ad nauseum, until the MSM has attached the paragraph in every story it has done.

So in short, Rove is now specifically denying the chief allegation of the MSM and the Left, which has NEVER been an allegation of the Special Prosecutor's office. As we know from the Senate Intelligence Report there was no need to "punish Joe", he was found to be bearing false witness - something Fitz latched onto early on.

Which brings me back to Matt Cooper. Question two: What would a former editor of The Nation, Washington Monthly, who is married to DNC operative, with a few weeks 'on the WH beat' as a "new employee" for Time be calling Rove anyway for - conveniently just before Novak was to print his story?

Welfare reform?

"I told the grand jurors that I was curious about Wilson when I called Karl Rove on Friday, July 11. Rove was an obvious call for any White House correspondent, let alone someone trying to prove himself at a new beat. As I told the grand jury--which seemed very interested in my prior dealings with Rove--I don't think we had spoken more than a handful of times before that. I recalled that when I got the White House job a couple of weeks earlier, I left a message for him trying to introduce myself and announce my new posting."

Heh, ya, and I've got a bridge fer ya!

The "bait and switch' of Journalism 101 my friends, and Cooper might have stepped clean into it. But as I develop this "double super secret background" further I'll let you know.

UPDATE: For more on this read this older Free Republic Thread on Matt and Mandy. Also via comments, AJ Strata here, here and also here.

Tracked to Decision 08

UPDATE: Per commenter JoeDuke, via LA Times, Fitz has been talking with Good Old Mr. Wilson:

"However, there was an additional sign that Fitzgerald continued to investigate aggressively. He phoned Wilson on Sept. 29, the same day Miller, the New York Times reporter jailed for refusing to divulge her confidential source, was released from jail after agreeing to testify in the case. She testified the next day." More here.

More updates: Tom Mcguire continues the Rove/Libby/Miller angle (which as I said, according to what I know really isn't the focus anymore), but interesting nonetheless.

More on Cooper, lies, damn lies and other reporters: Question 3 - "How many reporters does it take to cook up a false story"? Or what do The Nation's David Corn; 'super-secret mint tea sipper Joe Wilson; and Time's 'cub reporter' Matt Cooper have in common?

For further consumption and a taste of where this investigation is really going read my previous posts: here, here, here, here.

Get ready for the Shock and Awe...(h/t for the article, commenter JoeDuke).

UPDATE: I see Tom Mcguire is playing around with the "indictable 22" predicted the other day. Sorry Tom, no dice. Wilson's trip may have been declassed by Tenet "officially" by Tenet's July 11th statement, yet normally these things are declassed long before "statements" are issued. Not to mention - Ok, I will, that Wilson didn't even have a clearance - subequently a 'problem' if he's on a 'classified' mission.

Fact is that Fitzgerald would have his ass handed to him if he even tried that.

Onward and upward people!

UPDATE; As per TM, quoting the SSCI report, page 41, referencing the "clearance" given to Joe Wilson for his trip:

"The CIA has told Committee staff that the former ambassador did not have a "formal" security clearance but had been given an "operational clearance" up to the Secret level for the purposes of his potential visit to Niger.

...DO officials told Committee staff that they promised the former ambassador that they would keep his relationship with CIA confidential, but did not ask the former ambassador to do the same and did not ask him to sign a confidentiality or non-disclosure agreement. The former ambassador left for Niger on February 21, 2002.

As a former member of the community, I find this statement astounding - as does TM.

Yet, in my years, I have never heard of "temporary" or operational clearances.

What? They "deputized" him?

"Mr. Wilson, raise your right hand....Do you solumnly swear?"

....wink, wink, nudge, nudge....

I'd like to know more about this 'CIA" testimony. Quite frankly, on much of this matter I would be sifting anything that came out of the office. Again, through conversations I've had and from what we know there has been a major CYA going on in this matter since the beginning.

As I've said all along, I have actual contacts within the Agency, believe me or not, that's your choice, but I'm telling you there are people bouncing off the walls at Langly about this. So trust me, this goes a LOT deeper than a leak.

Sorry, this last statement was supposed to have this link to Mark Levin's July 2005 article in NRO), a good read on Valerie and the Plame Game.

UPDATE II - Important - Many have been emailing me reference Isikoff's article in Newsweek.

To put it nicely, he's spinning old yarn. This is actually old news (the descrepancy) as Byron York covered here back in July of 2005.

However, Isokof's quote of Rove, "I didn't take the bait," is key to what I'm told Fitzgerald is looking at now.

Isikoff writes: " Rove wrote Hadley, adding that he warned Cooper not to get "far out in front on this." After reviewing the e-mail, Rove then returned to the grand jury last year and reported the Cooper conversation. He testified that the talk was initially about "welfare reform"—a topic mentioned in the e-mail—and that Cooper then changed the subject. Cooper has written that he doesn't recall a discussion of welfare reform."

Again, I believe, and am told that Fitzgerald believes Cooper called specifically to bait Rove. Speculation is that Cooper already knew the Wilson/Plame game, maybe from Miller or more likely Corn or Pincus. In any case he was apparently the point man to "set up" Rove, start with a general question, then "Oh, by the way" about Wilson. Rove caught on, was tipped, I don't know, but he didn't take the bait.

UPDATE: III A question: Plame and 'George'? What does the George Soros fundedThe Center for American Progress and Matt Cooper have in common in relation to Plame Gate? The Devil is in the details

And what does Rogue CIA op, Ray McGovern, Larry C. Johnson, VIPS, all have to do with the plot to the Plame Game?

Memo to VIPS,...the jig is up.

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