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Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Andrea Mitchell Watch Day 3 -- Anatomy of a Circle Jerk

Andrea Mitchell on Hardball, following Patrick Fitzgerald's press conference on Oct, 28, 2005 (Crooks & Liars has audio/video of all the following):
I think the prosecutor made a very broad claim, whether you buy it or not, that the disclosure of any CIA officer's identity is a threat to our national security, that we are at a stage in our country where we need to recruit people, we need to guarantee that they will have anonymity and that you cannot recruit people to work in these difficult jobs, nor can you be sure that by disclosing their identity that you are not putting them in jeopardy. I happen to have been told that the actual damage assessment as to whether people were put in jeopardy on this case did not indicate that there was real damage in this specific instance.
Wow, Andrea, that's amazing. You GO GIRL!!! Where exactly did she get this exclusive, insider information? Well, maybe she watched Bob Woodward the night before on Larry King:
They did a damage assessment within the CIA, looking at what this did that [former ambassador] Joe Wilson's wife [Plame] was outed. And turned out it was quite minimal damage. They did not have to pull anyone out undercover abroad. They didn't have to resettle anyone. There was no physical danger to anyone, and there was just some embarrassment. So people have kind of compared -- somebody was saying this was Aldrich Ames or Bob Hanssen, big spies. This didn't cause damage.
I get goosebumps just being in proximity to this top-secret information being whispered to me by all-knowing insiders. I guess Tucker Carlson does too, because even the King of the Yellow Elephants went on to quote Andrea Mitchell as his source:
In fact, as NBC's Andrea Mitchell has reported, an internal CIA investigation found that Plame's outing caused no discernable damage to anyone.
So where is this mysterious assessment? According to the Washington Post and the CIA, it doesn't exist:
[A]fter Plame's name appeared in Robert D. Novak's column, the CIA informed the Justice Department in a simple questionnaire that the damage was serious enough to warrant an investigation, officials said.

The CIA has not conducted a formal damage assessment, as is routinely done in cases of espionage and after any legal proceedings have been exhausted.


Intelligence officials said they would never reveal the true extent of her contacts to protect the agency and its work.
Except, we are to believe, to a bunch of blabby right wing journalists.

Come on, guys and gal. Your credibility -- such as it is -- is on the ropes here. Time to put up or shut up. Who did you hear it from? Where is this report? And how convenient it all comes out just as Patrick Fitzgerald announced the Libby indictment. So very handy for you to be able to waltz before the cameras with that little snippet of spin just in time to do damage control for the administration.

One would think you might be the victims here of the Mighty Wurlitzer that lies with impunity and knows you will never hold them to account. So c'mon, give us the straight skinny. Where did this special little piece of bullshit come from?