All Hell’s Breaking Loose in Washington — Plame Sues Cheney, Libby and Rove

Spook suit: The Associated Press is reporting that Valerie Plame, the CIA officer whose identity was leaked to reporters, and her husband, Joseph Wilson, a former U.S. ambassador, have sued Vice President Dick Cheney, his former top aide and presidential adviser Karl Rove today, accusing them and other White House officials of conspiring to destroy her career.

The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court, accuses Cheney, Rove and I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby of revealing Plame’s CIA identity to exact revenge on Wilson for criticizing the Bush administration’s motives in Iraq.

Several news organizations wrote about Plame after syndicated columnist Robert Novak named her in a column on July 14, 2003. Novak’s column appeared eight days after Wilson alleged in an opinion piece in The New York Times that the administration had twisted prewar intelligence on Iraq to justify going to war.

The CIA had sent Wilson to Niger in early 2002 to determine whether there was any truth to reports that Saddam Hussein’s government had tried to buy yellowcake uranium from Niger to make a nuclear weapon. Wilson discounted the reports, but the allegation nevertheless wound up in President Bush’s 2003 State of the Union address.

The lawsuit accuses Cheney, Libby, Rove and 10 unnamed administration officials or political operatives of putting the Wilsons and their children’s lives at risk by exposing Plame.

“This lawsuit concerns the intentional and malicious exposure by senior officials of the federal government of … (Plame), whose job it was to gather intelligence to make the nation safer and who risked her life for her country,” the Wilsons’ lawyers said in the lawsuit.

Libby is the only administration official charged in connection with the leak investigation. He faces trial in January on perjury and obstruction-of-justice charges, accused of lying to FBI agents and a federal grand jury about when he learned Plame’s identity and what he subsequently told reporters.

Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald told Rove’s lawyer last month that he had decided not to seek criminal charges against Rove.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>