Thursday, July 21, 2005

Plame still news in the Washington Post (if not the Times), Randi Rhodes, Democracy Now!

Via BuzzFlash, Doyle e-mails Walter Pincus and Jim VandeHei "Plame's Identity Marked As SecretMemo Central to Probe Of Leak Was Written By State Dept. Analyst:"

A classified State Department memorandum central to a federal leak investigation contained information about CIA officer Valerie Plame in a paragraph marked "(S)" for secret, a clear indication that any Bush administration official who read it should have been aware the information was classified, according to current and former government officials.
Plame -- who is referred to by her married name, Valerie Wilson, in the memo -- is mentioned in the second paragraph of the three-page document, which was written on June 10, 2003, by an analyst in the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR), according to a source who described the memo to The Washington Post.
The paragraph identifying her as the wife of former ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV was clearly marked to show that it contained classified material at the "secret" level, two sources said. The CIA classifies as "secret" the names of officers whose identities are covert, according to former senior agency officials.
Anyone reading that paragraph should have been aware that it contained secret information, though that designation was not specifically attached to Plame's name and did not describe her status as covert, the sources said. It is a federal crime, punishable by up to 10 years in prison, for a federal official to knowingly disclose the identity of a covert CIA official if the person knows the government is trying to keep it secret.

Tina e-mails regarding The Randi Rhodes Show. She says Randi was speaking of an important article by a "Libby" yesterday and that she'll have "Libby" on the show today. From the description of the article Tina offers, I think Randi said "Liz." (I didn't hear the show yesterday.) Elizabeth Holtzman's "Torture and Accountability." Does that sound right? Here's an excerpt:

Although the terrible revelations of torture at Abu Ghraib hit the front pages in April 2004, no senior officials in the US military or the Bush Administration have yet been held accountable. The scandal has shamed and outraged many Americans, in addition to creating a greater threat of terrorism against the United States. But it has prompted no investigative commission (in the manner of the 9/11 commission) with a mandate to find the whole truth, or full-scale bipartisan Congressional hearings, as occurred during Watergate. Indeed, it is as though the Watergate investigations ended with the prosecution of only the burglars, which is what the cover-up was designed to insure, instead of reaching into the highest levels of government, which is what ultimately happened.
In just the latest sign of the current Administration's nose-thumbing at accountability for higher-ups, Lieut. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, the commander in Iraq when the Abu Ghraib abuses occurred, is reportedly under consideration for promotion.
Nonetheless, higher-ups can be held to account. Difficult as it may be to achieve, our institutions of government can be pressured to do the right thing. If the public and the media insist on thorough investigations and appropriate punishments for those implicated--all the way up the chain of command--they can prevail.

Several episodes from recent history illustrate how public opposition can change even the most entrenched government policy. Neither President Johnson nor President Nixon wanted to withdraw from Vietnam, but growing public anger forced Congress, finally, to end the war. Likewise, in Watergate, Congress did not commence impeachment proceedings to hold President Nixon accountable for his abuse of power until the American people demanded action after the Saturday Night Massacre (in which Nixon ordered the firing of Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox to keep him from getting incriminating personal tape recordings). And, of course, the most important example from the past fifty years is the civil rights movement, which brought down the system of segregation in the South through sustained and peaceful public protest.

I'll make it a point to try to listen today (yesterday was too busy) and urge others too as well.
(The Randi Rhodes Show can be heard online if you don't get it via your traditional radio or satellite radio.) (Holtzman was a guest on Democracy Now! discussing the article. I'll pull a link later this morning.)

And Rick e-mails to note the topic for Democracy Now! today:

Thur, July 21: Anti-Muslim sentiment in the aftermath of the London bombingsmay only get worse as the British capital prepares to host the 2012Olympics. We'll speak with sports writer David Zirin about his new book"What's My Name, Fool? Sports and Resistance in the United States"

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