Wednesday, October 19, 2005

The Importance of the Plame Affair

What seems to get lost in the lust for blood (however delicious) is that the actions of the administration directly do get damage to the real war on terror. Not only are they ruthless in pursuing their political goals, they are incompetent when it comes to the good of the nation.
"Imagine, if you will, working in Damascus as a NOC and reading that the president's chief adviser had confirmed the identity of a NOC. As you push into middle age, wondering what happened to your life, the sudden realization that your own government threatens your safety might convince you to resign and go home. That would cost the United States an agent it had spent decades developing. You don't just pop a new agent in his place. That NOC's resignation could leave the United States blind at a critical moment in a key place. Should it turn out that Rove and Libby not only failed to protect Plame's identity but deliberately leaked it, it would be a blow to the heart of U.S. intelligence. If just one critical NOC pulled out and the United States went blind in one location, the damage could be substantial. At the very least, it is a risk the United States should not have to incur."

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