Novak Finally Gets It

Douglas Hanson
Belatedly, Robert Novak sees the key deception in the so-called outing of Valerie Plame and the phony Libby prosecution for perjury.  Novak tells us that former House Intelligence Committee chairman Rep. Peter Hoekstra had tried to confirm Plame's covert status from the CIA but that he "got only double talk from Langley."  Now that the Dems are running the show, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee chairman Rep. Henry Waxman apparently has the power to get the CIA to officially weigh-in on the matter when neither Hoekstra nor the judge in the Libby trial were able to do so.

In his opening statement, Waxman asserted that Valerie Plame Wilson was a covert CIA operative when her identity was revealed, and that this was cleared by CIA Director, Gen. Michael Hayden.  Flashback to May of last year during the Libby trial, and it was clear that Special Prosecutor Fitzgerald was unable or unwilling to comply with the request of Libby's defense team and Judge Walton to provide evidence that Plame was covert, or to show the effect her "outing" had on national security.  Byron York in The Hill wrote that Judge Walton then asked Fitzgerald,
'Does the government intend to introduce any evidence that would relate to either damage or potential damage that the alleged revelations by Mr. Libby caused, or do you intend to introduce any evidence related to Ms. Wilson's status and whether it was classified or she was in a covert status or anything of that nature?'[emphasis added]
The answer was, in so many words, no, the government didn't intend to introduce any "tangible" evidence to confirm either assertion because it couldn't.  The only reason this farce of a trial continued beyond this point was because it was one of many political warfare campaigns against the President and Vice-President over the Iraq War.

As Novak says, Waxman is many things, but he is not a political neophyte who would deliberately and publicly twist the meaning of these statements cleared by Hayden. Yet, later in a conference with Hoekstra, Hayden,
... still did not answer whether Plame was covert under the terms of the Intelligence Identities Protection Act.
So now we have the Director of the CIA himself playing fast and loose with critical information relevant to a criminal case while the agency scrambles to regain its credibility in protecting the the American people.  This is what happens when only two Republicans show up at the hearings with one of them fawning over the blonde "spy."  If this is our loyal opposition to the majority, we are in deep trouble.
Belatedly, Robert Novak sees the key deception in the so-called outing of Valerie Plame and the phony Libby prosecution for perjury.  Novak tells us that former House Intelligence Committee chairman Rep. Peter Hoekstra had tried to confirm Plame's covert status from the CIA but that he "got only double talk from Langley."  Now that the Dems are running the show, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee chairman Rep. Henry Waxman apparently has the power to get the CIA to officially weigh-in on the matter when neither Hoekstra nor the judge in the Libby trial were able to do so.

In his opening statement, Waxman asserted that Valerie Plame Wilson was a covert CIA operative when her identity was revealed, and that this was cleared by CIA Director, Gen. Michael Hayden.  Flashback to May of last year during the Libby trial, and it was clear that Special Prosecutor Fitzgerald was unable or unwilling to comply with the request of Libby's defense team and Judge Walton to provide evidence that Plame was covert, or to show the effect her "outing" had on national security.  Byron York in The Hill wrote that Judge Walton then asked Fitzgerald,
'Does the government intend to introduce any evidence that would relate to either damage or potential damage that the alleged revelations by Mr. Libby caused, or do you intend to introduce any evidence related to Ms. Wilson's status and whether it was classified or she was in a covert status or anything of that nature?'[emphasis added]
The answer was, in so many words, no, the government didn't intend to introduce any "tangible" evidence to confirm either assertion because it couldn't.  The only reason this farce of a trial continued beyond this point was because it was one of many political warfare campaigns against the President and Vice-President over the Iraq War.

As Novak says, Waxman is many things, but he is not a political neophyte who would deliberately and publicly twist the meaning of these statements cleared by Hayden. Yet, later in a conference with Hoekstra, Hayden,
... still did not answer whether Plame was covert under the terms of the Intelligence Identities Protection Act.
So now we have the Director of the CIA himself playing fast and loose with critical information relevant to a criminal case while the agency scrambles to regain its credibility in protecting the the American people.  This is what happens when only two Republicans show up at the hearings with one of them fawning over the blonde "spy."  If this is our loyal opposition to the majority, we are in deep trouble.