Subject: In other words, wives are now "fair game"

Date: Mon Oct 6, 2003  9:13 am

William Rivers Pitt
In other words, wives are now "fair game.
Mon Oct 6 13:11:39 2003

Intelligence Identities Protection Act of 1982 (50 U.S.C. 421 et seq.)
(governing disclosures that could expose confidential Government agents)

Suspicion centers on Lewis Libby

t r u t h o u t - William Rivers Pitt | Fair Game

Fair Game
By William Rivers Pitt
t r u t h o u t | Perspective
Monday 6 October 2003

Officials within the United States government have determined
that attacking the wife of a vocal critic in order to silence that
critic, and to silence the hundreds of other analysts who know full well
the breadth and scope of the lies that have been told, is acceptable
behavior. In other words, wives are now "fair game."

The wife of Joseph Wilson, Valerie Plame, was an extraordinary
person doing an extraordinary job. In the lexicon of the intelligence
business, she was a CIA agent with a 'non-official cover,' otherwise
known as a 'Noc.' An Associated Press report about Plame described Noc
status as, "the most difficult kind of false identity for the agency to
create, often involving especially dangerous jobs." In Plame's case, her
Noc status was created so she could covertly work to keep weapons of
mass destruction out of the hands of terrorists.

You might recall the Tom Cruise film 'Mission Impossible,' the
plot of which revolved around Cruise working to retrieve something
called a 'Noc List' which had fallen into the wrong hands. The 'Noc
List' was a list of extreme deep cover agents whose exposure would lead
not only to their deaths, but to the destruction of several valuable
intelligence networks. That's just the movies. The real world, Valerie
Plame was on a Noc List, and now her cover has been blown by Bush
administration officials. She and her husband now report that they are
living in fear that Plame's life is now in jeopardy because her
undercover status has been removed.

Plame was not the only person to have her cover blown by the
Bush administration's desire for petty revenge and political cover. On
her W-2 tax form, Plame cited her employer as being a company called
Brewster Jennings Associates. This has since been revealed to be a CIA
front company, and was likely the 'employer' for a number of other
deep-cover agents who have, along with Plame, been blown by the Bush
administration. Robert Novak, the columnist who first exposed Plame in
print, disgraced himself further on television when he said, ""There is
no such firm, I'm convinced. CIA people are not supposed to list
themselves with fictitious firms if they're under a deep cover --
they're supposed to be real firms, or so I'm told." Actually, Robert,
the company does exist, and deep-cover operatives 'work' for companies
like this to keep their CIA status a secret.

So, to recap, the wives of Bush administration critics are
fair game. CIA operatives are likewise fair game. If said CIA operative
is working to defend our national security by keeping weapons of mass
destruction out of the hands of terrorists, that does not matter,
because they are fair game. Also, front companies used to protect the
identities of CIA operatives working to defend our national security,
and by proxy all of the agents whose lives are protected by that cover,
are fair game as well.

Seeing as how this is the case, that the barest standards and
principles no longer have a place within this administration, that the
national security of the United States can be sacrificed for low-rent
political retribution, that George W. Bush and his people have been
exposed as the rankest and bloodiest hypocrites in the history of
American government, that everything is now fair game, I say let's have
at it. If politics is now nothing more than a WWF cage match, I want in.
I have a fighter in my corner who also believes in the idea that
everything is fair game.

My fighter is an independent counsel. Let's call him James.
James will ask what motivated Colin Powell to say, on February
24, 2001, "Hussein has not developed any significant capability with
respect to weapons of mass destruction." James will ask Powell what he
based this statement on. James will ask Powell why, in light of his
February 24th comment, he said "We know that Saddam Hussein is
determined to keep his weapons of mass destruction, is determined to
make more" before the United Nations on February 5th, 2002, and why he
said, ""I am confident that we will find evidence that makes it clear he
had weapons of mass destruction" on May 4th, 2003.

James will want to know which version of reality was the
truth, and which version was the act of a company man hauling water for
a pack of professional liars. James will have dozens and dozens of such
contradictory statements to check out, from Bush and Cheney and Rumsfeld
("We know where they are," said Rumsfeld of the WMDs on March 30. "They
are in the area around Tikrit and Baghdad.") and Rice and Wolfowitz and
Perle and all the others who promised us there were weapons in Iraq that
posed a direct threat to the United States.

James will ask what in the world happened to the 26,000 liters
of anthrax, the 38,000 liters of botulinum toxin, the 500 tons of sarin
and mustard and VX, and the 30,000 munitions capable of delivering these
terrible substances. This is all listed on a White House web page called
'Disarm Saddam Hussein.' The claim that Iraq attempted to procure
uranium from Niger to begin a nuclear weapons program is also on this
page, months after that story was completely discredited. James will
want to know where all this stuff is, and why it is still listed on a
government website as a legitimate cause for war.

James will want to know why George W. Bush said, "We found the
weapons of mass destruction!" on Polish television on May 29th. James
will want to know if Bush was lying, stupid, or both.

James will be able to go on and on in this vein. That's what
makes James a dangerous man in a cage match. That is also what is making
the White House sweat about this. Valerie Plame was attacked because
Joseph Wilson blew the lid off the fact that the White House lied about
that Niger uranium. The Niger uranium issue will become central to
James' investigation. Pull on that Niger thread, and the entire tapestry
of lies surrounding the Iraq war will come spinning to the ground.

In a fascinating twist, James will in all likelihood also be
able to act as a powerful and credible investigator into what really
happened on September 11th. After all, connecting 9/11 to Iraq was a
central note within the administration's rhetorical push for war. James
will be forced to get to the bottom of this, and to the bottom of 9/11
itself, to make clear what connections there were between that terrible
day and Iraq's terrible leader. James will have to investigate every
corner of 9/11 to make sure there were no Iraqis skulking around in the

If everything is fair game, surely the Bush administration
won't mind these types of questions. Anyone who would torpedo an
undercover agent and harm our national security should appreciate the
bare-knuckled approach.

William Rivers Pitt is the Managing Editor of He
is a New York Times and international best-selling author of three books
- "War On Iraq," available from Context Books, "The Greatest Sedition is
Silence," available from Pluto Press, and "Our Flag, Too: The Paradox of
Patriotism," available in August from Context Books.
Without Justice, there is JUST_US!

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The People cannot be safe without information." -- Thomas Jefferson

Controversy surrounds the hunt for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.

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Friday, October 3, 2003 Posted: 6:16 PM EDT (2216 GMT)

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