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Plame Game - "Spooky Business"

Via the Opinion Journal comes this article by Reuel Marc Gerecht, a former CIA case officer, where he talks about the "fantasy" that the media has created about the Plame Game.

"Truth be told, however, the agency doesn't care much at all about cover. Inside the CIA, serious case officers have often looked with horror and mirth upon the pathetic operational camouflage that is usually given to both "inside" officers (operatives who carry official, usually diplomatic, cover) and nonofficial-cover officers (the "NOC" cadre), who most often masquerade as businessmen. Yet Langley tenaciously guards the cover myth--that camouflage for case officers is of paramount importance to its operations and the health of its operatives.

Know the truth about cover--that it is the Achilles' heel of the clandestine service--and you will begin to appreciate how deeply dysfunctional the operations directorate has been for years. Only a profoundly unserious Counter-Proliferation Division would have sent Mr. Wilson on an eight-day walkabout in Niger to uncover the truth about uranium sales to Saddam Hussein and then allowed him to give an oral report.....

Langley's systemic sloppiness--the flimsiness of cover is but the tip of the iceberg of incompetence--has repeatedly destroyed agent networks and provoked "flaps" with some of our closest allies. A serious CIA would never have allowed Mr. Wilson to go on such an odd, short "fact finding" mission. It never would have allowed Ms. Plame potentially to expose herself by recommending such an overt mission for her mate, not known for his subtlety and discretion. With a CIA where cover really mattered, Mr. Libby would not now be indicted. But that's not what we have in the real world. We have an American left that hates George W. Bush and his vice president so much that they have become willing dupes in a surreal operational stage-play. You have to give credit to Langley: Overseas it may be incompetent; but in Washington, it can still con many into giving it the respect and consideration it doesn't deserve."

The fact of the matter of CIA ops is that there is the real and then the imaginary world protrayed in MSM and in Joe Wilson's mind, where he used to create with "literary flair" with his, "drinking sweet mint tea and meeting with dozens of people," drivel.

The only thing he didn't do with the tea is "shake and stir". The point is that the reason I'm on this story - my obsession as it is - is because of just how ridiculous the whole story - which the MSM took as gospel - really is. As an old long retired agent friend of mine said in 2003 when the story was breaking, when Joe outed himself, asked deadpan, "They sent him for what?"


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