11.02.2009

Cheney Failed to Answer 72 FBI Questions About the Plame/CIA Leak; Leaving Plame "Still Wanting to Know..."

Jason Leopold covers all the details -- or lack there of, from the release of Dick Cheney's FBI Special Prosecutor interview transcripts in the Valerie Plame leak/Scooter Libby trial in, "Cheney Could Not Recall Key Events About His Role in the Valerie Plame Leak."

Here's a bit of it (via T r u t h o u t) :

A month before Valerie Plame Wilson's covert status as a CIA operative was revealed in a newspaper column, Vice President Dick Cheney told his then-chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, and his press secretary, Cathie Martin, that Plame Wilson worked at the spy agency.

But according to a 28-page summary of Cheney’s May 8, 2004 interview with the special prosecutor probing the leak, Cheney did not recall having that conversation.

"Cheney has no recollection of Cathie Martin entering his office at some point while Scooter Libby was present and advising both of them that [Plame Wilson] was employed by the CIA," states the interview summary, released late Friday by the FBI after a lengthy court battle between the Bush and Obama administrations and the government watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW).

The "Plame-gate" affair dates back to 2003, when Valerie Plame Wilson’s husband, former US Ambassador Joseph Wilson, publicly disclosed that he had undertaken a fact-finding trip to Niger which had disproved President Bush’s claim that Iraq was seeking to buy yellowcake uranium from the African nation.

As Wilson was going public with his knowledge of the Niger falsehood, Bush administration officials began leaking the fact that Wilson’s wife worked for the CIA and had a hand in arranging Wilson’s trip to Niger.

The leakers included Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage, White House political adviser Karl Rove and Libby.

read the full fascinating piece here...
You can also read about the stunning fact that Cheney failed to answer 72 (!) FBI Questions in this CBS report:
Federal prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald famously declared in the Valerie Plame affair that "there is a cloud over the vice president." Last week's release of an FBI interview summary of Dick Cheney's answers in the criminal investigation underscores why Fitzgerald felt that way.

On 72 occasions, according to the 28-page FBI summary, Cheney equivocated to the FBI during his lengthy May 2004 interview, saying he could not be certain in his answers to questions about matters large and small in the Plame controversy.

The Cheney interview reflects a team of prosecutors and FBI agents trying to find out whether the leaks of Plame's CIA identity were orchestrated at the highest level of the White House and carried out by, among others, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Cheney's chief of staff.

Among the most basic questions for Cheney in the Plame probe: How did Libby find out that the wife of Bush administration war critic Joseph Wilson worked at the CIA?

Libby's own handwritten notes suggest Libby found out from Cheney. When Libby discovered Cheney's reference to Plame and the CIA in his notes - notes that Libby knew he would soon have to turn over to the FBI - the chief of staff went to the vice president, probably in late September or early October 2003.

Sharing the information with Cheney was in itself an unusual step at the outset of a criminal investigation in which potential White House witnesses were being ordered by their superiors not to talk to each other about the Plame matter.

"It turns out that I have a note that I had heard about" Plame's CIA identity "from you," Libby says he told the vice president.

read more....
But, it's this Jason's interview of Valerie Plame from November 2007 that makes the news that Dick couldn't remember significant details all the more infuriating.

I don't think Valerie is EVER going to get the truth out of this thug until he is charged with lying to federal prosecutors:

Cheney told FBI he had no idea who leaked Plame ID (h/t HillBillyReport):
In the interview, whose participants included Fitzgerald, Cheney told agents that he did not recall having a conversation about either Plame or her husband with Bush.

The vice president said he probably discussed Wilson with Bush's top political adviser, Karl Rove, but told the FBI he would not have talked to Rove about Wilson's wife.

Cheney's denials that he talked about Plame are among the few things in the lengthy interview with the FBI that Cheney appeared certain about. He repeatedly said he could not recall key events. Among them, he said he did not recall discussing Wilson's wife with Libby before her CIA employment was publicly revealed by conservative columnist Robert Novak in mid-July 2003.

Evidence at Libby's criminal trial showed that Cheney had told Libby about Wilson's wife in mid-June 2003.

That, as we all know now, is LYING TO FEDERAL PROSECUTORS .

Here's Jason Leopold interviewing Valerie Plame (h/t GottaLaff):
Valerie Plame Still Wants to Know ...
By Jason Leopold t r u t h o u t | Report Tuesday 13 November 2007

Former covert CIA operative Valerie Plame Wilson would still like to know the identity of the CIA official who passed her name to the office of Vice President Dick Cheney in the spring of 2003, and "under what circumstances."

That's just one of several unanswered questions Plame Wilson has been trying to figure out in the years since several senior officials in the Bush administration leaked her name to syndicated columnist Robert Novak and a handful of other journalists. That leak ended her two-decade CIA career.

"I'd like to know, why did Novak go with my maiden name, Plame, in his original article?" Plame Wilson said during an hour-long, two-part interview with Truthout. "I always thought that was strange. When I married, I took my married name. And then he [Novak] used Valerie Plame [in his column]. It was only the CIA who knew that I worked for them, and my maiden name."

[snip]

Perhaps the most important question yet to be answered for Plame Wilson is whether President Bush had prior knowledge about the leak of her identity.

"I'd love to know, what did President Bush know about all of this?" Plame Wilson said.


Valerie Plame's book, "Fair Game," can be found at Barnes & Noble.

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