Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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April 22, 2006
By: Kevin Drum

LEAK UPDATE....Here's a potentially interesting turn in the espionage case that's being prosecuted against two former AIPAC lobbyists:

Lawyers for two lobbyists accused of conspiring to obtain secret defense information said Friday that they intended to prove that senior administration officials, including Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, provided the lobbyists with some of the sensitive information.

....At a hearing Friday, Abbe Lowell, the lawyer for former AIPAC employee Steven J. Rosen, said the testimony of Rice and the other officials was necessary to show that they also had disclosed sensitive information and that some of the disclosures at the crux of the indictments might have been authorized.

An "authorized" leak? Now where have I heard that phrase before....?

Kevin Drum 12:28 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (31)

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Comments

If it came from Condi, it must have been a "good leak." After all, just because everything the Administration has put out as "authorized" leaks has turned out to be both false and self serving, there's no reason to think Condi's leak wasn't both false and self serving.

Posted by: Derelict on April 22, 2006 at 12:45 PM | PERMALINK

Doesn't Condi have some sort of spousal privledge in these matters?

Posted by: Steve Paradis on April 22, 2006 at 12:52 PM | PERMALINK

Do we have to go over this again?

The President has the Constitutional authority to establish policy in any area related to our national security.

The single most important policy directive is that IOKIYAR.

It's time for traitors to get with the programme.

Posted by: frankly0 on April 22, 2006 at 12:54 PM | PERMALINK

Lawyers for two lobbyists accused of conspiring to obtain secret defense information said Friday that they intended to prove that senior administration officials, including Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, provided the lobbyists with some of the sensitive information.

Which is irrelevent because Condoleezza Rice by definition cannot leak sensitive information. Bush, because he is President of the United States, has the power to declassify any "sensitive" information. So if Rice gave out that information, it was probably declassified by Bush. In that case it wouldn't be a leak because Bush made it completely legal to do so by declassifying it.

Posted by: Al on April 22, 2006 at 1:18 PM | PERMALINK

This sounds like a sure-fire indicator that Condi is in fact planning to run for President in 2008. She's getting some on-the-job training to pick up where W leaves off. If she does it, that makes it legal.

Posted by: polychrome on April 22, 2006 at 1:23 PM | PERMALINK

It's time to replace "Condiliar" with "Condileaker"

Posted by: Hedley Lamarr on April 22, 2006 at 1:24 PM | PERMALINK

Also, how do you know Bush didn't delegate his declassification power to Rice just as he did to Cheney?

Posted by: Al on April 22, 2006 at 1:25 PM | PERMALINK


AL: So if Rice gave out that information, it was probably declassified by Bush.

Al, there's some very unclassy presidential semen leaking out of your mouth.


Posted by: jayarbee on April 22, 2006 at 1:25 PM | PERMALINK

Our President in his most articulate and characteristic moment,


http://img182.imageshack.us/img182/5638/bushfinger41pd.gif


What were they saying about the dignity of the office not long ago --?

Posted by: cld on April 22, 2006 at 1:33 PM | PERMALINK

Heh! Imagine Rice 'testifing' before a court. If her mouth is moving she is telling a lie. And she's good at lying, so who could parse any germs of truth from what she might say?

Maybe some waterboarding might get closer to the truth. Set up a antique four-footed bathtub in the court, tell her to leave her Prodi shoes at home, and waterboard away. On TV!

Since waterboarding isn't torture, lets just say it is an alternate form of getting at the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

Posted by: JimPortlandOR on April 22, 2006 at 1:48 PM | PERMALINK

Isn't it strange the Kevin would be posting about this somewhat obscure espionage/leak case and an unsubstantiated claim by the defendants, when the real news today is that a Clinton administration/Kerry supporter official with the CIA has just been fired for leaking classified information -- apparently admitting she did so after first failing a polograph?

I suppose it is very hard for a liberal democrat to figure out what to say, but it is an extremely important issue that warrants comment.

Posted by: brian on April 22, 2006 at 1:56 PM | PERMALINK

I suppose it is very hard for a liberal democrat to figure out what to say, but it is an extremely important issue that warrants comment.

What to say?

It's OK if you're a Republican (IOKIYAR).

Otherwise, not.

Posted by: frankly0 on April 22, 2006 at 1:59 PM | PERMALINK

Also, how do you know Bush didn't delegate his declassification power to Rice just as he did to Cheney?

Exactly! And not just Rice: I firmly believe that Bush delegated that same declassifying power to the career NSA guys who came forward and exposed the illegal wiretapping program and to the career CIA guys who leaked the existence of black prisons.

What else could explain good, honest men disclosing secrets like that? I mean -- either all the leakers are guilty or none are, and I prefer to believe the latter.

It can't just be the case that only the classified information that's leaked from the White House is legal and for patriotic reasons.

Let's face it, only mentally disturbed sycophants with a complete and utter lack of integrity could believe that.

Posted by: trex on April 22, 2006 at 2:02 PM | PERMALINK

a Clinton administration/Kerry supporter official with the CIA

What the hell are you talking about? From the story:

Mary McCarthy, worked in the CIA's inspector general's office and had worked for the National Security Council under the Clinton and and George W. Bush administrations.

She was a career agent who'd worked under three administrations. Period. Had she not been fired, she would have likely worked under another one or two.

I don't know what "liberals" have to say about this but here's what I have to say: disclosing the existence of those prisons was nothing short of patriotic. I'm not sure what history and civics classes you failed to attend, but it's not in the history or tradition of liberal democracies to disappear people into secret prisons in order to torture them.

That's more of a Communist, totalitarian thing.

Posted by: trex on April 22, 2006 at 2:10 PM | PERMALINK

Hey Brian, I know what to say.

Good for her! Thanks for putting your duty to your country ahead of your loyalty to your bosses!

Posted by: Alexander Wolfe on April 22, 2006 at 2:12 PM | PERMALINK

Isn't it strange that rather than address the topic of the post Brian tries to deflect the topic of conversation to a Clinton supporter in the CIA being fired for leaking? Isn't it strange how Brian argues it more important to discuss this CIA leaker, yet does not provide any further information and/or links to this supposedly more important story? Isn't it strange how Brian sees as equivalent this CIA leaker that was a supporter (according to Brian) of Clinton/Kerry with the Sec of State former NSA Rice being accused of leaking in an espionage case? Isn't it strange how Brian is completely unable to defend his side so he has to try and find something, anything from the Dems side that he can stretch into some false equivalency where none exists?

Of course the answers to the above is no, of course it isn't strange, Brian is a faithful member of the trolletariat. A CIA employee with no direct connections to either Clinton or Kerry beyond being a supporter somehow is on the same level as a current Sec of State/former NSA revealing classified information only in the minds of the trolletariat and other members of the cult of Bush. In reality this issue with Rice is far more serious than the dodge Brian is trying to get people to follow because she is a Cabinet level official, and when that level official is accused of leaking classified information and is a member of an Administration known for selectively leaking classified information that helps their domestic political purposes which included the Iraq war I might add to not focus on it is to show both ignorance of how to rank the importance of issues and/or is to show oneself for the Bush partisan trolletariat member that one is. Thanks Brian for yet again showing yourself for exactly what you are, someone with no credibility and even less intelligent conversation.

Posted by: Scotian on April 22, 2006 at 2:23 PM | PERMALINK

Larry Johnson on Mary McCarthy,

http://www.tpmcafe.com/node/29098

Sometime within the last year she returned to CIA on a terminal assignment. I've heard through the grapevine that she was attending the seminar for officers who are retiring while working with the Inspector General (IG). Now things get interesting. She could find out about secret prisons if Intelligence Officers involved with that program had filed a complaint with the IG or if there was some incident that compelled senior CIA officials to determine an investigation was warranted. In other words, this program did not come to Mary's attention (if the allegations are true) because she worked on it as an ops officer. Instead, it appears an investigation of the practice had been proposed or was underway. That's another story reporters probably ought to be tracking down.

Posted by: cld on April 22, 2006 at 2:31 PM | PERMALINK

Which leak is it this week?

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on April 22, 2006 at 2:31 PM | PERMALINK

I realize we are not going to get anywhere on this argument. But McCarthy's loyalty pledge as a CIA employee is not to her bosses, it is to her country. And no, it is not patriotic to annonymously go to Dana Priest with the WAPO and disclose classified information. The alleged secret prisons (if they existed) may be a good or bad idea, but McCarthy's opinion that they are a bad idea does not justify her annonymously and criminally leaking information to WAPO.

Trex, you got to be real about this -- she is not some politically neutral "career agent." See the following:

Kerry: maximum $2,000 contribution each by her and her husband
Ohio Democrat Party $5,000 contribution in October 2004

National Security Advisor Samuel R. Berger announced June 16, 1996 the appointment of Mary O'Neil McCarthy as Special Assistant
to the President and Senior Director for Intelligence Programs. She succeeded Rand Beers in that post. She left the White House shortly after Bush became president.

Posted by: brian on April 22, 2006 at 2:46 PM | PERMALINK

I realize we are not going to get anywhere on this argument. But McCarthy's loyalty pledge as a CIA employee is not to her bosses, it is to her country.

No. The SF-312 is not a loyalty-pledge to any damn thing. It's a nondisclosure agreement.

If she disclosed in violation of her SF-312, I don't give a crap who she gave money to. I don't care who appointed her. She belongs in jail, just like Libby and Rove and Franklin, and all the other scumbags. Unless she can qualify under law as a whistleblower. And I think given the circumstances, she stands a much better chance than any of these other bozos.

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on April 22, 2006 at 2:50 PM | PERMALINK

And here's the REAL reason for our upcoming invasion of Iran:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20060422/wl_nm/energy_iran_india_pakistan_dc_1

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on April 22, 2006 at 2:54 PM | PERMALINK

Did McCarthy reccomend that Jow Wilson go no Niger? Did she reccomend the Plame leak to DOJ? This seems like just the beginning of this story.

Posted by: BlaBlaBla on April 22, 2006 at 3:01 PM | PERMALINK

OBF is probably right that McCarthy belongs in jai. I don't know what "whistleblower" protection would apply to her leaking to WAPO. But I think her Clinton/Kerry connections and bias are obviously relevant, particularly since the democrats have been so up in arms about the apparently non-criminal "leaking" of Plame's name.

But on the substance, I don't see why this is so hard. CIA employees agents should not be annonymously leaking classified information to the WAPO, regardless of their motivation. It there is some matter of principle, then the CIA employee should take the issues to the appropriate authorities and, if that fails, and he/she thinks it is such an important issue, then he/she should publicly report it and accept the consequences. If he/she is correct that it is a patriotic service, then there it is unlikely to produce criminal penalities. Instead, McCarthy did her deed in exactly the way you would expect a political partisan to do it.

Posted by: brian on April 22, 2006 at 3:05 PM | PERMALINK

Interestin point from Machiavel over ay JOM:


Answer me this... if McCarthy was at CSIS from August 2001 until 2005, why do all but one of her political donations still list her as a U.S. Government employee? Was she doing double-duty? Or did the Kerry campaign and the DNC misreport the identity of a high-dollar donor?

On 3/14/2004, she is a U.S. Government employee when donating to the Kerry campaign. On 10/5/2005, she is at CSIS while donating to the Ohio Democratic Party. Twenty four days later, she is back at the CIA when she cuts a last-minute check to the DNC.

Also: $5,000 donations to state parties are pretty rare, and rarer still for out-of-state contributors. The maximum is $10,000. Since the mid-'90s, here are about 3,700 people listed as individual contributors to the Ohio Democratic Party, and based on some rough eyeballing, less than 10% are for amounts of $5,000 and above. This would put McCarthy in the top 300 donors to the Ohio Democratic Party in 2004 -- on a civil servant / think tank salary.

This isn't your average Bush-hater with a few bucks to spare. This is a savvy political operator, throwing that much money around in a swing state. I would not be at all surprised if she were the Democratic equivalent of a Pioneer or Ranger.

Posted by: BlaBlaBla on April 22, 2006 at 3:27 PM | PERMALINK

wingnut priorities are fairly easy to decipher ... when a leak is used to prevent them from killing or torturing whoever the fuck they want, then its bad.

Posted by: Nads on April 22, 2006 at 3:42 PM | PERMALINK

Yep, with their hokey explanation of how Bush declassified parts of the NIE for Scooter Baby, the Bush people opened yet another can of worms. Spinning in a court of law will be a trickier game that what Condi is used to.

Posted by: little ole jim from red country on April 22, 2006 at 4:10 PM | PERMALINK

Yes YOU Traitors get with the attack and KILL Programme you gottdamm Bloggers -GwB
And it's not the Longhorns it's Veles or Volos when me and pickles do our 'Lord' hand sign.
Volos
IOKIYAR? read on....

Mr. Bush will express U.S. concerns about China's hidden military buildup during his meeting today with Chinese President Hu Jintao, but will not discuss the hedge strategy, administration officials said.
Officials said the objective of the Asian buildup is to dissuade China from becoming a hostile power and to have the military capability to swiftly defeat the communist nation in a conflict using military forces that are forward-deployed in Asia or are available to be moved on short notice from Alaska, Hawaii, California and elsewhere.
Bush administration national security officials said most of the military moves are being carried out in ways designed to avoid provoking Beijing. Masking the buildup is not strategic deception, they said, but is part of what is called strategic denial: playing down the focus on China and highlighting the global nature of overall U.S. military transformation.
"I'm partly saying to them, 'Look, if you, the Chinese, are not transparent as you grow and you become more influential, and you add to your military, you will recognize that others are going to respond to that,'?" Mr. Zoellick told The Times. "And if you are not transparent, if you're not emphasizing cooperation with people, they're going to respond in ways that build their defenses, not only their own military defenses but how they work with others."
Japan, Australia, India and nations in Southeast Asia also share U.S. worries about China, he said.

Posted by: Bush War Preznit on April 22, 2006 at 8:43 PM | PERMALINK

Bush Volos Church

Why is Bush so hostile to the idea of gay marriage? Perhaps because until 1987, George W. Bush was gay. According to a group of 29 Yale classmates who comprise Gay Ivy Leaguers for Truth, Bush was known to be at least sexually experimental throughout his time in college. One of Bushs alleged former boyfriends, Anthony Berusca (class of 70), told The Dallas Morning News that Bush was deeply conflicted about being gay, even somewhat self-hating. Berusca is convinced that this conflict led to Bushs drinking problems, but describes the President as a gentle, caring lover. In 1976, the Bush family arranged for George to join Worthy Creations, a church group in El Paso that focuses on converting homosexuals through faith. A year later, Bush claimed to be straight, born again, and engaged to Laura Welch.

RUh ROH!

Posted by: VOLOS on April 22, 2006 at 8:52 PM | PERMALINK

Lowell argued Friday that the law infringed on the 1st Amendment rights of lobbyists to petition the government.


It's all about the Money. So much for the Window Dressing.

Posted by: one eye buck tooth [X^B on April 22, 2006 at 8:59 PM | PERMALINK

CIA World FACTBOOK. CHINA.
http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/ch.html
Military branches:
Definition Field Listing
People's Liberation Army (PLA): Ground Forces, Navy (includes marines and naval aviation), Air Force (includes Airborne Forces), and II Artillery Corps (strategic missile force); People's Armed Police (PAP); Reserve and Militia Forces (2006)
Military service age and obligation:
Definition Field Listing
18-22 years of age for compulsory military service, with 24-month service obligation; no minimum age for voluntary service (all officers are volunteers); 17 years of age for women who meet requirements for specific military jobs (2004)
Manpower available for military service:
Definition Field Listing
males age 18-49: 342,956,265
females age 18-49: 324,701,244 (2005 est.)
Manpower fit for military service:
Definition Field Listing
males age 18-49: 281,240,272
females age 18-49: 269,025,517 (2005 est.)
Manpower reaching military service age annually:
Definition Field Listing
males: 13,186,433
females age 18-49: 12,298,149 (2005 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
$81.48 billion (2005 est.)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP:
Definition Field Listing Rank Order
4.3% (2005 est.)

Mr. Bush will express U.S. concerns about China's hidden military buildup during his meeting today with Chinese President Hu Jintao, but will not discuss the hedge strategy, administration officials said.

See Previous Post for 'Hedge'

Posted by: Bush Political SocioPath on April 22, 2006 at 9:04 PM | PERMALINK

President Bush sez

I want the leakers found
Any leakers found will no longer be a part of my trainwre...adminstration.
I'm a deciderer not a room divider. ( paraphrasing all this but you get the gist )

Now what with his nanny, Ms CondiLIAR's record of truthiness on planes flyin into buildin's that we never saw and ' historical' presidential warnin's and Condi's little tubes of terror in 2002 and ' we don't torture, oh no, no, no, yes.'
Surely Ms CondiLEAKER, the pretzelheads nanny has richly earned a rendering and a waterboarding to end all about this small matter of SPYING.
But bein as I'm a gentleman and all , I'll settle for what Mary McCarthy got for the Mrs G Bush house negress - and that is a simple polygraph thank ya'll very much. Ya'll have a nice day now y'here!

Posted by: professor rat on April 22, 2006 at 9:21 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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