Friday, November 18, 2005

The deeper it goes, the loster I get ...

At the rate Tom Macguire at JustOneMinute keeps reeling off plausible Plamegate segments of history, I'm beginning to suspect he teases us each morning after spending the late evening roaming in his Time Machine. My head alternates between nodding and spinning.

As one in awe of this, I feel like a kid pleading, "Give me a ride, will ya? Huh? Huh? Pleeeease!" So I hope he indulges me and sets the dials for the Wilson dining room circa January 2001 and we can hover in time a while flipping through the days looking for the first night when "this crazy report" is uttered.

The reason is this. Although, according to Tom's post today [excerpting JPod's response to a Time article]:

... Later, he writes: "The previously undisclosed fact gathering began in the first week of June 2003 at the CIA, when its public-affairs office received an inquiry about Wilson's trip to Africa from veteran Washington Post reporter Walter Pincus....The same week, Under Secretary of State Marc Grossman asked for and received a memo on the Wilson trip...Sources familiar with the memo, which disclosed Plame's relationship to Wilson, say Secretary of State Colin Powell read it in mid-June. Deputy Secretary Richard Armitage may have received a copy then too."

... So what does this tell you?
may tell me "that the State Department, which leaks like a sieve, knew about Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame in June", I would suspect that the State Department knew about Joe Wilson and Valerie Plame much earlier, like 1999. After all, Joe is a chatty guy.

Don't leave yet!

Would you believe, at least, before November 20, 2001?

On November 20, 2001, U.S. Embassy Niamey disseminated a cable on a recent meeting between the ambassador and the Director General of Niger's French-led consortium. The Director General said "there was no possibility" that the government of Niger had diverted any of the 3,000 tons of yellowcake produced in its two uranium mines.
Was the Embassy reporting back on "this crazy report' or another one involving lots more yellow cake. I don't know. The point is the State Department considered Niger + Yellowcake = Iraq + Secret Deal bunk. Joe Wilson thought it was bunk. That 'rumor' had been circulating a long while before the specific report Valerie describes as "crazy" supposedly tripped the switch that set Joe's Great Safari into motion. And Joe Wilson had worked in the State Department and is a "maintain contacts" kind of guy.

So while we hover in the dining room, I'll be watching for whether the first mention of "this crazy report" is wrapped like this:

"Joe, the CIA has this crazy report ...."

Or this,

"Valerie, I heard the CIA has this crazy report ..."

An inquiring mind wants to know, Tom. (Just tell me I'm loster than I thought.)


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