Friday, July 15, 2005
Via Guardian UK:
Mr Rove told the grand jury in testimony last year that he specifically remembered Mr Novak telling him that Ms Wilson worked for the CIA, AP reported its source, identified only as a person working in the legal profession, as saying. Mr Rove told the grand jury that by the time Mr Novak had called him, he believes he had similar information about Mr Wilson's wife from another reporter but had no recollection of which reporter had told him about it first, the source said.
Mr Rove testified that Mr Novak originally called him days before Ms Wilson's identity was revealed in July 2003 to discuss another story. The conversation eventually turned to former ambassador Joseph Wilson, who was strongly criticising the Bush administration's Iraq war policy and the intelligence it used to justify the war, the source said.
According to Mr Rove's testimony, Mr Novak told him he had learned and planned to report in a weekend column that Mr Wilson's wife had worked for the CIA, and the circumstances on how her husband travelled to Africa to check bogus claims of alleged nuclear material sales to Iraq.
Another journalist, Time reporter Matt Cooper, identified Mr Rove to the grand jury earlier this week as the source for his story regarding Ms Wilson. Mr Cooper refused to "scoop" himself by discussing precisely what Mr Rove told him before he can publish his story on the pages of Time. Mr Rove told the grand jury that four days later, he had a phone conversation with Mr Cooper and - in an effort to discredit some of Mr Wilson's allegations - told Mr Cooper that Mr Wilson's wife worked for the CIA, though he never used her name.
A third reporter, New York Times staffer Judith Miller, is also believed to have known Ms Wilson's identity. She is currently serving a prison sentence for contempt, after refusing to betray a journalistic confidence and testify about her source before the grand jury.
Mr Novak has refused to discuss his sources or his involvement in the investigation. - more: Guardian UK
THE PROHIBITION AGAINST “CONFIRMING” CLASSIFIED INFORMATION
In a new column about his role in the affair, Novak said Ms Plame's unmasking was not a "planned leak". He said that her identity came in passing during a conversation with a "senior administration official".
He wrote: "It was an offhand revelation from this official, who is no partisan gunslinger. When I called another official for confirmation, he said, 'Oh, you know about it'."
But in July, Novak told Newsday that the sources had come to him with Ms Plame's name. "I didn't dig it out, it was given to me. They thought it was significant, they gave me the name and I used it." - [Julian Borger, The Guardian (UK), October 2, 2003 - via Lex Nex]
Newsday: Columnist Names CIA Iraq Operative, July 21, 2003.
"they're coming after you".
Wilson's credibility was attacked by allies of the administration and the Washington Post reported that the White House was livid about his article which essentially said the president had misled America. Then a friend told Wilson of a conversation he had with conservative columnist Robert Novak.
The friend had been walking along the street with Novak and casually asked him about the uranium story. "Wilson's an asshole," Novak had replied.
"The CIA sent him. His wife Valerie works for the CIA... She sent him."
A couple of days later Wilson got a call from Walter Pincus, a veteran intelligence reporter from the Washington Post, to say "they're coming after you".
The following Monday Novak wrote his now infamous column. In it he disclosed that Wilson's wife "Valerie Plame is an agency operative on weapons of mass destruction." He said two senior administration officials had told him Wilson's wife suggested sending him to Niger to investigate the uranium report.
The column brought her career of covert action over 20 years to a sudden end - and possibly compromised her sources. - [The Irish Times, July 9, 2005 - via Lex Nex]
Larry Johnson, a former CIA officer, said he was trained 14 years ago with Valerie Plame, a specialist on weapons of mass destruction,...
"She's under cover, working in a clandestine situation, and it was exposed for the sake of cheap, tawdry politics. Assessing the damage for this could be difficult and will take some time.
"I'm a registered Republican and I'm sickened by this," he added. "I've spoken with four colleagues who have since left the agency who worked with her. And they are livid." - [The Guardian (UK), October 2, 2003 - via Lex Nex]
on suspicious nature of grand jury testimony being leaked:
Novak to Rove/Rove to Novak:
Scooter Libby - "totally obsessed with Wilson," NY Daily News
"Classified State Department Report Taken Onto Air Force One Thought to Be Source of Plame’s Identity": Was Ari the other leaker?