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Wednesday, October 1, 2003

White House betrayal.

From the Boston Globe's lead editorial today:

The important point is that it is illegal to reveal the identity of undercover intelligence officers, as members of the administration seem to have done. The columnist Robert Novak reported on July 14 that "two senior administration officials" had told him that the wife of former US ambassador Joseph Wilson was an operative of the CIA. The column ran eight days after Wilson had written an op-ed article in The New York Times suggesting that the Bush administration had exaggerated the nuclear threat from Iraq.

Whether it was intended as payback, or as a warning to others who might question administration policies in public, or had some other motive, the naming of an undercover agent is a reprehensible, dangerous, and disloyal crime. Former President George H. W. Bush said in 1999: "I have nothing but contempt and anger for those who betray the trust by exposing the name of our sources. They are, in my view, the most insidious of traitors." Even if the senior Bush was talking about people who give the names of agents directly to enemies, the point is the same: The exposure of one agent threatens intelligence operations everywhere. It is crime against national security.

("Betrayal under Bush," editorial, Boston Globe 10.1.03)

Copyright © 2003 by Philocrites | Posted 1 October 2003 at 8:35 AM

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