No crime committed in Plame flap

In his 2003 State of the Union address, President Bush mentioned that the Iraqi regime had tried to purchase yellowcake uranium from Africa. This intelligence information was obtained from British sources, and our own intelligence community affirmed its validity before the speech. Niger's former minister of mines and that nation's president at that time admitted being approached by an Iraqi trade delegation in one instance and an Algerian businessman representing the Iraqis at another time, inquiring about purchase of yellowcake uranium.

Democrats however, said it was not so, made loud noises about it, and this became the basis for their "Bush lied" assertion. Valerie Plame managed to get her husband, Joe Wilson, sent to Niger to fact-find about the alleged uranium purchase. He conducted perfunctory inquiries and returned with the predetermined conclusion that the alleged attempt to purchase uranium was a fabrication, created by Bush to justify his going to war in Iraq. He then claimed his wife's role as a CIA agent had been made public to punish him for his findings.

When special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald undertook the Plame leak investigation, he knew within a week that it was Undersecretary of State Richard Armitage who, months before, had mentioned Valerie Plame's name as a CIA employee to journalist Robert Novak. Yet Fitzgerald kept silent and continued the investigation for three more years at taxpayers' expense, all in an apparent effort to get somebody, hopefully Vice President Dick Cheney and/or Karl Rove!

What they got was Lewis Libby, a little man in the scheme of things, on a trumped-up charge in an investigation that could have and should have been closed within a week! Lewis Libby, by presidential action, has now been freed from the possibility of political confinement. Armitage was never charged because no crime had been committed!

Robert Smock, Hephzibah



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