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June 04, 2007

CIA: Plame Was Covert
JYM: If She Was Covert, How Come No One Can Prove That?

Last week Patrick "Father Fitzmas" Fitzgerald released what is purportedly a "summary" of Plame's CIA employment, indicating, he claims, that she was covert.

The employment history indicates that while she was assigned to CPD, Plame, "engaged in temporary duty travel overseas on official business." The report says, "she traveled at least seven times to more than ten times." When overseas Plame traveled undercover, "sometimes in true name and sometimes in alias -- but always using cover -- whether official or non-official (NOC) -- with no ostensible relationship to the CIA."

Tom Maguire has a few questions. For one thing, Plame's pension records would contain the dates during which she had served abroad (required for "covert" designation under the IIPA). And yet Fitzgerald's summary doesn't see fit to include such information.

Huh? This is the dog declining to bark in the night - her CIA personnel file has the dates for which she received credit for service abroad, so why not mention that? Is it possible that the DoJ investigators did not have access to her file? No, per footnote 2 on page 5 of the sentencing calculations, we are assured that "The investigators were given access to Ms. Wilson's classified file".

So, both the CIA and the DoJ had access to Ms. Plame's file detailing her dates of service abroad, yet chose not to present that information to the defense. Why might they do that? A suspicious mind would wonder whether they would omit that data if it were helpful to their case, or only gloss past it if her most recent date of service abroad were say, 1997, when she was recalled to the United States (as per this Vanity Fair profile).

Not even a year range, for those who would object that we don't want Plame's super-secret overseas missions compromised with an exact date. Okay, we don't need an exact date -- how about Patrick Fitzgerald swearing as an officer of the court these trips occurred after 1998? That's pretty vague as far as letting out secrets -- but very relevant as far as the text of the law.

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posted by Ace at 11:21 AM

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