Valerie Wilson was CIA’s Iraq WMD Hunt Chief
According to authors David Corn and Michael Isikoff, as recounted to them by CIA personnel, Valerie Wilson was not merely a covert agent in the field—she was that, certainly, but she was also director of operations for JTFI, the Joint Task Force on Iraq formed by the CIA in 2001 to investigate Cheney’s irresistable hunch that Saddam Hussein was actively and vigorously pursuing advanced weapons programs. The story was published today in t r u t h o u t.
In July 2003, four months after the invasion of Iraq, Wilson was publicly named as a CIA “operative on weapons of mass destruction” by columnist Robert Novak. We all know what happened next.
Wilson left the CIA at the end of last year, and she and her husband have filed a civil suit against Cheney, Karl Rove, and Scooter Libby. Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage and Senior Presidential Advisor Karl Rove are believed to have been Novak’s “senior administration” sources, and Vice-Presidential advisor I. Lewis Libby was prosecuted for his words about Wilson to other reporters.
Also at issue, according to Corn’s and Isikoff’s sources, is whether or not Valerie Wilson was involved in her husband’s diplomatic mission to Niger, through which he claimed to have discovered that no sale of yellowcake uranium by Niger to Iraq ever took place. The authors say a senior State Department official had written a memo admitting that the publicized portrayal of Valerie Wilson’s involvement in the Niger talks was mistakenly inflated.
But there is a significant circumstantial connection between the work of Valerie in Iraq and of Joe in Niger: despite persistent and intense efforts, Valerie’s JTFI was unable to find any proof of active weapons programs in Iraq. Joe Wilson left Niger confident that the yellowcake accusations were baseless. Neither could come up with the smallest shred of evidence to support the monstrations of the White House. Luckily, just as no internationally supervised election had been necessary to secure the Bush presidency in 2000, no evidence would be needed to launch the warships. The nonevidence was broadcast as fact in the State of the Union address anyway. That alone is grounds for impeachment of a President of the United States.
It has long been apparent and continues to grow clearer that the Bush administration, and Cheney in particular, had decided long before 2003 that there would be a war in Iraq. Those who weren’t willing to lie or to at least remain silent about the complete bogusness of the administration’s pretexts for an invasion were punished. When the press began to report that there had been no active weapons programs in Iraq, the pretexts for the war changed accordingly, and crowds cheered enthusiastically for Bush’s new ‘messianic mission’ for democracy. First Iraq, then…the WORLD!!!!!!! Virtually no one in American government, academia, or mainstream journalism uttered a word in protest. Those who did were, if not punished, eyed and growled at by the slobbering bulldogs in the corner.
What a disgrace. What a disturbingly effective program of propaganda. What an America.
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