Thursday, November 17, 2005

Bob Woodward: From Hero to Zero

Bob Woodward, heroic reporter of the Watergate scandal, has become a zero in the CIA leak case. From exposing governmental misdeeds in the 70s, he's now implicated in covering up governmental criminality. Before we learned that he was involved in the Plame case, he had been appearing on TV pretending to be an impartial critic of Patrick Fitzgerald, even calling Fitzgerald a junkyard dog. Now we find out that Woodward, like Judy Miller, has been covering up for miscreants among the Bushites.

Raw Story says that Woodward's unnamed source for Valerie Plame Wilson's identity as a CIA operative was Steve Hadley, who was an aide to CondiLiar Rice at the time he revealed information about Plame Wilson to Bob Woodward.

Raw Story also has an interesting timeline of Hadley's complicity in intelligence manipulation before the invasion of Iraq:

On Jan. 28, 2003, Bush claimed that Iraq had attempted to purchase uranium from Africa in his State of the Union address. It is the very claim that Hadley had seen from Pollari and the very claim that the CIA rejected.

Two days later, the Washington Post reports that Hadley is acting as liaison between the White House and the Senate Intelligence Committee in helping to “sift through intelligence with the help of the CIA, and trying to determine what can be released without damaging the agency’s ability to gather similar information.”

In March 2003, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) discredits these documents as forgeries. It is also in March that the US begins combat operations in Iraq.

According to sources, Woodward’s meeting with Hadley occurs in mid-June of 2003, around the same time that Libby begins to meet with New York Times’ Judith Miller, who has since left the paper.

In early July, Wilson writes his New York Times op-ed, entitled “What I did not find in Niger.” The White House responds on two fronts, according to an article published at the time in the Washington Post.

“Behind the scenes, the White House responded with twin attacks: one on Wilson and the other on the CIA, which it wanted to take the blame for allowing the 16 words [on uranium] to have remained in Bush's speech. As part of this effort, then-national security adviser Stephen J. Hadley spoke with Tenet during the week about clearing up CIA responsibility for the 16 words, even though both knew the agency did not believe Iraq was seeking uranium from Niger, according to a person familiar with the conversation.

A former senior CIA official said yesterday that Tenet's statement was drafted within the agency and was shown only to Hadley on July 10 to get White House input. Only a few minor changes were accepted before it was released on July 11, this former official said. He took issue with a New York Times report last week that said Rove and Vice President Cheney's chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, had a role in Tenet's statement.”

Several days later, columnist Robert Novak outs Valerie Plame as a CIA operative.

On July 22, Hadley takes full responsibility for the Niger claims in the President’s State of the Union, even though Tenet had already done so on July 11.

The same day, Pat Roberts (R-KS), chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, calls Hadley to testify in closed door hearings.