Now Playing: some King Crimson you've probably never heard of before
John Hinderaker has a great response to the Associated Press report issued today with the headline "Libby: White House 'Superiors' OK'd Leaks."
The term "leaks," as Hinderaker points out in the context of Lewis Libby, suggests at first blush that Cheney ordered Libby to rat out Plame.
Actually, the story has nothing to do with anything Plame-related.
In fact, what Libby is saying is that he was given the task of leaking information from the 2003 National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) to the press because that's what chiefs of staff sometimes do to move the news and to inform the public.
Do you realize how much of what we know is classified information that was deliberately shared with a member of the press? Much of our diet of information about the Government comes from the Government. The gumshoes are simply listening to their masters' voices. From the AP:
Special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald said in documents filed last month that he plans to introduce evidence that I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Cheney's former chief of staff, disclosed to reporters the contents of a classified National Intelligence Estimate in the summer of 2003.Hinderaker responds:
The NIE is a report prepared by the head of the nation's intelligence operations for high-level government officials, up to and including the president. Portions of NIEs are sometimes declassified and made public. It is unclear whether that happened in this instance.
"Unclear"? How is it "unclear"? The NIE has been declassified since the summer of 2003, and we have quoted from it many times since then. These proceedings from the House of Representatives show that the NIE had been declassified no later than July 21, 2003. So it's not exactly a mystery whether "that happened in this instance." There are only two alternatives here: either AP reporters are too lazy to spend 30 seconds on Google to educate themselves as to what happened during the ancient history of 2003, or they write articles that are deliberately misleading.Go look in your local rag this morning. How many stories of national and international import mention senior administration officials or sources familiar with the case?
Do we not tell ourselves how we know what we know? Would that be too embarrassing to our intellectual dignity?
No, I don't believe in neutral observers. I don't think neutral information exists. That's not how people learn.
He is not charged with leaking classified information from an intelligence estimate report.Yeah. But this is a story about something, isn't it? Probably and stuff.