Friday, August 26, 2005

TREASONGATE: US COURT OF APPEALS: "Special Counsel's Showing Decides The Case"

While Joe Wilson, who still hasn't mentioned the hovering ominous specter of 18 USC 794, is in damage control mode cowardly hiding behind the bravery of Cindy Sheehan, and Judith Miller continues to whine about being put in jail for protecting criminals and crimes, I thought it would make good reading to summarize the incendiary 83 page opinion issued by The US Court of Appeals (D.C. Circuit),IN RE: GRAND JURY SUBPOENA, JUDITH MILLER so you can have some judicial perspective from the three judge appellate tribunal as to the seriousness of the crimes Fitzgerald is pursuing.

This Court of Appeals decision will be interesting to readers of this blog since it not only damns the crimes of the Bush administration, but it also backs up the issue of
Fitzgerald's plenary authority as acting Attorney General for the Tgate prosecution, and cites United States v. Williams to witness authority for the argument that thefederal grand jury acts as an independent branch of the US Government.

The decision also tackles the question of whether bloggers are entitled to the same freedom of the press protections as all other journalists.

The Court of Appeals circuit judges had to perform a preliminary adjudication of the facts and the law in Treasongate to determine if the press (Miller and Cooper in this case) were entitled to a special privilege to protect their leak sources. And in doing so the Judges put incredible anti-Bush administration statements on the record which have not been reported in the main stream media. These are crushing blows to the Bush administration.

Both the Court of Appeals, and the District Court below it, after reviewing eight and a half pages of classified and redacted proofs presented by Special Counsel Fitzgerald's office, held that the evidence was so serious that they could not in good conscience allow the press to protect the criminals and crimes that had been committed.

The decision of the Court of Appeals in this matter gives me hope that there will be serious prosecutions coming down upon the Treasongate "perpetraitors".

Despite the main stream media mantra that Fitzgerald has damaged freedom of the press, it's obvious from reading the full opinion that this three judge appellate tribunal, spearheaded by Judge Tatel, did, in fact, clarify this previously muddy issue of source protection. Tatel's concurring opinion found that, despite controlling US Supreme Court precedent,
Branzburg v. Hayes, mandating that the press does not have a special privilege to protect sources under the 1st Amendment, such a privilege does exist in the common law. Judge Tatel sought to create a test to balance the seriousness of the crimes committed against the needs of the press to protect their sources.

Tatel attempted to make new law by crafting a logical test to balance these issues, then applied the test to the Tgate fact pattern, only to find that the Special Counsel had proved that the "gravity of the suspected crime" was far more important than the news value of the leaked information.

The other two Judges were so moved by Fitzgerald's showing of proof that they determined no test needed to be crafted since Special Counsel's evidence was strong enough to defeat any test they might possibly craft. In the interest of Judicial restraint the majority opinion does not mention the test created by Tatel.

I first became aware of this Appellate Court decision when I read
Lawrence O'Donnel's analysis of it in the July 7, 2005, Huffington Post, wherein he makes reference to the "eight redacted pages". Let me explain what those eight redacted pages (actually eight and a half redacted pages) mean, and what they don't mean.

From the middle of page 72 (using the PDF file page count) through page 80, the court's opinion contains blank pages which represent the redacted, classified proofs tendered by Special Counsel to the court. The middle of page 72 through the top of page 76 is the blank space that refers to evidence pertaining to Judith Miller's sources. And from Page 76 through page 80 is the blank space which refers to Cooper's sources. These eight and a half redacted pages are what the Court of Appeals examined to determine whether Cooper and Miller would be allowed to protect their sources. The classified findings contained in those pages convinced all three Judges sitting on this tribunal that Fitzgerald is pursuing very serious crimes.

What the eight and a half redacted pages do not represent is the enitrety of Special Counsel's case. This is a very important point to focus on. O'Donnel's report has been misunderstood by some who think that the "eight redacted pages" make up Fitzgerald's entire case. The Appellate Court's decision does not say that. In fact, the Court's decision clearly delineates on page 76, the cut off where Special Counsel's showing as to Miller ends and Cooper begins.

These eight and a half redacted pages convinced the seasoned jurists sitting on the bench, not just in The Court of Appeals, but in the lower District Court as well, that the gravity of the crimes committed far outweighed the needs of the press to leak such information. We can only imagine what Fitzgerald gave them. So try to imagine the scope of evidence he must have that is not specifically related to Miller or Cooper. Until I actually read the 83 page opinion for myself, I had assumed that the eight redacted pages represented the lion's share of
Fitzgerald's case. But after reading the Court of Appeals opinion carefully, I believe the eight and a half redacted pages are just the tip of the iceberg. So let's now take a close look at what they said and why they said it.

Circuit Judge Sentelle wrote the opinion of the court, and also wrote a concurring opinion, as did Circuit Judges Henderson and Tatel. [Please note, for the ease of internet viewing, that all of my citations will refer to page numbers in the
official ".gov" PDF file ].

The analysis section begins on page 7. There were four possible grounds the court considered as to whether the reporters were entitled to the privilege of protecting their sources from the Special Counsel's probe:

A. 1st Amendment Claim

B. A Common Law Privilege

C. Due Process

D. DOJ administrative guidelines

All three of the circuit judges concurred that there was no special exemption for the press as to A, C and D above. They major difference they had pertained to the Common Law privilege. But in the end, they all agreed that even if there is a common law exemption available to the press, in this case Special Counsel's showing clearly outweighed any such privilege.

Let's take a look at what the court had to say about all of the possible exemptions (all bold face and italics are emphasis added by CS):

A. 1st Amendment Claim

The Appellate Court stated on page 7-8:

"In his opinion below, the Chief District Judge held that “a reporter called to testify before a grand jury regarding confidential information enjoys no First Amendment protection.” In Re Special Counsel Investigation, 332 F. Supp. 2d 26, 31 (D.D.C. 2004). Appellants argue that “this proposition of law is flatly contrary to the great weight of authority in this and other circuits.” Appellants are wrong. The governing authority in this case, as the District Court correctly held, comes not from this or any other circuit, but the Supreme Court of the United States. In Branzburg v. Hayes, 408 U.S. 665 (1972), the highest Court considered and rejected the same claim of First Amendment privilege on facts materially indistinguishable from those at bar. "

The court further stated on page 10-12:

"In rejecting the claim of privilege, the Supreme Court made its reasoning transparent and forceful. The High Court recognized that “the grand jury’s authority to subpoena 11 witnesses is not only historic . . . but essential to its task.” 408 U.S. at 688 (citation omitted).

The grand juries and the courts operate under the “longstanding principle that ‘the public has a right to every man’s evidence,’ except for those persons protected by constitutional, common law, or statutory privilege.” Id. (citations and internal punctuation omitted). The Court then noted that “the only testimonial privilege for unofficial witnesses that is rooted in the Federal Constitution is the Fifth Amendment privilege against compelled self-incrimination.” Id. at 689-90. The Court then expressly declined “to create another by interpreting the First Amendment to grant newsmen a testimonial privilege that other citizens do not enjoy.” Id. at 690. In language as relevant to the alleged illegal disclosure of the identity of covert agents as it was to the alleged illegal processing of hashish, the Court stated that it could not “seriously entertain the notion that the First Amendment protects a newsman’s agreement to conceal the criminal conduct of his source, or evidence thereof, on the theory that it is better to write about a crime than to do something about it.” Id. at 692....

The Branzburg Court further supported the rejection of this claimed privilege by the commonsense observation that “it is obvious that agreements to conceal information relevant to the commission of crime have very little to recommend them from the standpoint of public policy.” Id. at 696. While the Court recognized the right of the press to abide by its agreements not to publish information that it has, the Court stated unequivocally that “the right to withhold news is not equivalent to a First Amendment exemption from an ordinary duty of all other citizens to furnish relevant information to a grand jury performing an important public function.” Id. at 697.

We have pressed appellants for some distinction between the facts before the Supreme Court in Branzburg and those before us today. They have offered none, nor have we independently found any."

All of the Judges concurred that there was no 1st Amendment exemption for the press.

B. The Common Law Privilege

Now pay very close attention to the wording of the Court's unanimous opinion here (pages 16-17):

"The Court is not of one mind on the existence of a common law privilege. Judge Sentelle would hold that there is no such common law privilege for reasons set forth in a separate opinion. Judge Tatel would hold that there is such a common law privilege. Judge Henderson believes that we need not, and therefore should not, reach that question. However, all believe that if there is any such privilege, it is not absolute and may be overcome by an appropriate showing. All further believe, for the reasons set forth in the separate opinion of Judge Tatel, that if such a privilege applies here, it has been overcome. Therefore, the common law privilege, even if one exists, does not warrant reversal.

This statement represents the full opinion of the court, but each of the judges wrote a concurring opinion as well. After we take a brief look at the other two failed exemption grounds, we will examine each of their statements further on the common law issue. "

C. Due Process

Not only did the Court of Appeals find that this argument was without merit, the court took notice of the independent power the federal grand jury holds in our government.

From page 17:

"While appellants insist that their privilege is absolute, they assert a secondary line of argument that if their privilege is conditional, then their due process rights have been violated by the refusal of the Special Counsel and the District Court to provide them access to the Special Counsel’s secret evidentiary submissions in support of the enforcement of the subpoenas. This argument is without merit."

Regarding the power and independent authority of the federal grand jury, the Court of Appeals had this to say on page 17:

"As the Supreme Court has reminded us on occasion, “the grand jury is an institution separate from the courts.” United States v. Williams, 504 U.S. 36, 47 (1992). The function of that separate institution is to “serv[e] as a kind of buffer or referee between the government and the people.” Id. "

D. Department of Justice Guidelines

Not only did the Appellate Court find that this argument was without merit, it also recognized that Fitzgerald has all of the plenary authority of the Attorney General in his case. From page 20:

"In their final argument for reversal of the District Court’s contempt finding, appellants contend that the Special Counsel did not comply with the Department of Justice guidelines for issuing subpoenas to news media and that such failure provides an independent basis for reversal. The District Court expressed its doubt that the DOJ guidelines were enforceable, but found that even if they were, Special Counsel had fully complied with the guidelines. Because we conclude that the guidelines create no enforceable right, we need not reach the question of the Special Counsel’s compliance. The guidelines in question are set forth in 28 C.F.R. § 50.10 and the United States Attorney’s Manual, § 9-2.161. Those guidelines provide that subpoenas for testimony by news media must be approved by the Attorney General, a requirement not pertinent in the present case as the Special Counsel had received delegation of all the Attorney General’s authority... "

Somebody give that man a cigar. It's been judicially confirmed, Fitzgerald has all of the power of the Attorney General for the purposes of prosecuting Treasongate crimes.

Out of the four issues presented to the court, it was the common law privilege that most concerned the circuit judges. All three of the circuit judges offered different opinions on whether such an exemption exists, but they all agreed that, even if such an exemption does exist, the exemption is only "qualified" and not "absolute". They also agreed that the Special Counsel's showing of proof was strong enough to outweigh any test they might create. What's most interesting is the language each judge used to describe the weight given by them to Special Counsel's proofs.

Judge Sentelle did not recognize the existence of a common law privilege.

JUDGE SENTELLE (from page 24):

"SENTELLE, Circuit Judge, concurring: As noted in the opinion of the court, I write separately to express my differing basis for affirming the District Court on the common law privilege issue...[A]ny such privilege enjoyed by the reporters has been overcome by the showing of the United States... "

Judge Henderson agreed and elaborated (from page 34):

"Because my colleagues and I agree that any federal common-law reporter’s privilege that may exist is not absolute and that the Special Counsel’s evidence defeats whatever privilege we may fashion, we need not, and therefore should not, decide anything more today than that the Special Counsel’s evidentiary proffer overcomes any hurdle, however high, a federal common-law reporter’s privilege may erect."

From page 35, footnote 2:

"Is the Special Counsel’s evidentiary proffer sufficient to overcome any qualified privilege that may exist? Because we agree that the answer is “yes,” there is no need for us to go any further. "

And then the blockbuster quote:

"While I am convinced that we need not, and therefore should not, go further than to conclude, as did the district court, see Appendix 35-36, 275, that the Special Counsel’s showing decides the case... "

That's a big quote there. It's so big, I don't even know what it means. And I think the Judge may have intended to be as coy as the quote suggests. And if I'm right about that, hang on to your hat, America, this is going to be quote a thrill ride.

Judge Tatel found that a common law privilege for the press does exist, and he tried valiantly to make the case. But in the end, Tatel decided that Special Counsel's showing was strong enough to overcome any test that might exist in the law: (from page 43):

TATEL, Circuit Judge, concurring in the judgment: This case involves a clash between two truth-seeking institutions: the grand jury and the press. On the one hand, the grand jury, a body “deeply rooted in Anglo-American history” and guaranteed by the Fifth Amendment, see United States v.Calandra, 414 U.S. 338, 342-43 (1974), holds “broad powers” to collect evidence through judicially enforceable subpoenas. See United States v. Sells Eng’g, Inc., 463 U.S. 418, 423-24 (1983). “Without thorough and effective investigation, the grand jury would be unable either to ferret out crimes deserving of prosecution, or to screen out charges not warranting prosecution.” Id. at 424. On the other hand, the press, shielded by the First Amendment, “has been a mighty catalyst in awakening public interest in governmental affairs, exposing corruption among public officers and employees and generally informing the citizenry of public events and occurrences.” Estes v. Texas, 381 U.S. 532, 539 (1965). Using language we have quoted with approval, see Carey v. Hume, 492 F.2d 631, 634-35 (D.C. Cir. 1974), the Second Circuit aptly described this conflict between press freedom and the rule of law: “Freedom of the press, hard-won over the centuries by men of courage, is basic to a free society. But basic too are courts of justice, armed with the power to discover truth. The concept that it is the duty of a witness to testify in a court of law has roots fully as deep in our history as does the guarantee of a free press.” Garland v. Torre, 259 F.2d 545, 548 (2d Cir. 1958). Because I agree that the balance in this case, which involves the alleged exposure of a covert agent, favors compelling the reporters’ testimony, I join the judgment of the court.

Tatel went on to fashion a balancing test, one that recognized a special common law exemption that would protect the press from revealing sources under certain circumstances. From page 69:
"In short, the question in this case is whether Miller’s and Cooper’s sources released information more harmful than newsworthy."

Then Tatel applied the test to the facts (page 70):

"Applying this standard to the facts of this case, and considering first only the public record, I have no doubt that the leak at issue was a serious matter. Authorized “to investigate and prosecute violations of any federal criminal laws related to the underlying alleged unauthorized disclosure, as well as federal crimes committed in the course of, and with intent to interfere with, [his] investigation, such as perjury, obstruction of justice, destruction of evidence, and intimidation of witnesses,”see Letter from James B. Comey, Acting Attorney General, to Patrick J. Fitzgerald, United States Attorney, Northern District of Illinois (Feb. 6, 2004), the special counsel is attempting to discover the origins of press reports describing Valerie Plame as a CIA operative monitoring weapons of mass destruction. See majority op. at 3-5. "

Before returning to Tatel's opinion, it's interesting to note that Tatel, along with the other two circuit judges, do not limit their discussion to the Intelligence Identities Protection Act. Tatel appears to be concerned with "violations of any federal criminal laws related to the underlying alleged unauthorized disclosure." If the Court of Appeals is not limiting its discussion to the IIPA, why the hell is Joe Wilson and the main strema media limiting their discussion to the IIPA?

More from Judge Tatel (pages 70-72):

"An alleged covert agent, Plame evidently traveled overseas on clandestine missions beginning nearly two decades ago. See, e.g., Richard Leiby & Dana Priest, The Spy Next Door; Valerie Wilson, Ideal Mom, Was Also the Ideal Cover, Wash. Post, Oct. 8, 2003, at A1. Her exposure, therefore, not only may have jeopardized any covert activities of her own, but also may have endangered friends and associates from whom she might have gathered information in the past...

The leak of Plame’s apparent employment, moreover, had marginal news value. To be sure, insofar as Plame’s CIA relationship may have helped explain her husband’s selection for the Niger trip, that information could bear on her husband’s credibility and thus contribute to public debate over the president’s “sixteen words.” Compared to the damage of undermining covert intelligence-gathering, however, this slight news value cannot, in my view, justify privileging the leaker’s identity...

Just as due process poses no barrier to forcing an attorney to testify based on the court’s examination of evidence, unseen by the lawyer, that the client sought legal advice in pursuit of a crime, neither does it preclude compulsion of a reporter’s testimony based on a comparable review of evidence, likewise unseen by the reporter, that a source engaged in a harmful leak. In fact, appellants’ protests notwithstanding, ex parte review protects their interests, as it allows the government to present—and the court to demand—a far more extensive showing than would otherwise be possible given the need for grand jury secrecy discussed in the court’s opinion, see majority op. at 17-18. That said, without benefit of the adversarial process, we must take care to ensure that the special counsel has met his burden of demonstrating that the information is both critical and unobtainable from any other source. Having carefully scrutinized his voluminous classified filings, I believe that he has.

Voluminous classified findings? Hey now.

Judge Tatel (from page 81):

"In sum, based on an exhaustive investigation, the special counsel has established the need for Miller’s and Cooper’s testimony. Thus, considering the gravity of the suspected crime and the low value of the leaked information, no privilege bars the subpoenas. "

Judge Tatel concluded (from pages 82-83):

"I conclude, as I began, with the tensions at work in this case. Here, two reporters and a news magazine, informants to the public, seek to keep a grand jury uninformed. Representing two equally fundamental principles—rule of law and free speech—the special counsel and the reporters both aim to facilitate fully informed and accurate decision-making by those they serve: the grand jury and the electorate. To this court falls the task of balancing the two sides’ concerns.

As James Madison explained, “[A] people who mean to be their own Governors must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives.” See In re Lindsey, 148 F.3d 1100, 1109 (D.C. Cir. 1998) (quoting Letter from James Madison to W.T. Barry (Aug. 4, 1822), in 9 The Writings of James Madison 103 (Gaillard Hunt ed., 1910)). Consistent with that maxim, “[a] free press is indispensable to the workings of our democratic society,” Associated Press v. United States, 326 U.S. 1, 28 (1945) (Frankfurter, J., concurring), and because confidential sources are essential to the workings of the press—a practical reality that virtually all states and the federal government now acknowledge—I believe that “reason and experience” compel recognition of a privilege for reporters’ sources. That said, because “[l]iberty can only be exercised in a system of law which safeguards order,” Cox v. Louisiana, 379 U.S. 559, 574 (1965), the privilege must give way to imperatives of law enforcement in exceptional cases.

Were the leak at issue in this case less harmful to national security or more vital to public debate, or had the special counsel failed to demonstrate the grand jury’s need for the reporters’ evidence, I might have supported the motion to quash. Because identifying appellants’ sources instead appears essential to remedying a serious breach of public trust, I join in affirming the district court’s orders compelling their testimony. "

Where is the main stream media in reporting this decision? It's fairly frightening, America. The free press is long gone down the road to perdition. The main stream media, by its calculated decision to ignore the very damning language of this court, and its unwillingness to cover 18 USC 794, has proven itself to be nothing more than the Government's bureau of propaganda.

As long as the press sticks to the script, "Wilson was smeared, but the IIPA was not violated", the press is allowed to hammer away, as yesterday's regurgitated LA Times recap makes witness to (a report which added nothing new to the matter and was only issued as cover for the blogosphere truth bombs being exploded all over this case). Deviations from that script do not seem to be allowed.

We must, if we are to have any chance of sustaining this republic, demand that the press deliver the whole story all of the time. There's only one way that will happen. A complete boycott of main stream media sources, print, internet and TV.

I don't know how to go about making that happen.

I agree with James Madison and Judge Tatel, “A people who mean to be their own Governors must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives."

I am no fan of either the GOP or the Democratic Party. I see them as different sides of the same team. I do not trust them at all. They have proven themselves to be fighting for the same cause, the overthrow of this republic into the hands of a corporate hierarchy and a coming Police state.

It would take the average citizen a long time to sift through everything I've written on the Treasongate crimes. Adding anything else to this analysis would only serve to confuse more than clarify. If the readership of CS thinks this information is important, do something with it. I don't think I can add anymore to the debate.

I don't know when I'll add to this blog again.

The rabbit hole is so deep and wide, I'm not sure what our chances of esacpe are. I don't know if the press will ever be there for the people again.

Thank you for the kind letters of support. I have not been able to respond everybody, but I do read them all. I enjoy hearing from you, it makes the work worthwhile.

Until we meet again...

By Citizen Spook


Bloggers will be interested in the following comments by Judge Sentelle (from page 29-30):

"The Supreme Court went on to observe that “freedom of the press is a ‘fundamental personal right . . . not confined to newspapers and periodicals. It necessarily embraces pamphlets and leaflets . . . . The press in its historic connotation comprehends every sort of publication which affords a vehicle of information and opinion.’” Id. (quoting Lovell v. Griffin, 304 U.S. 444, 450, 452 (1938)). Are we then to create a privilege that protects only those reporters employed by Time Magazine, the New York Times, and other media giants, or do we extend that
protection as well to the owner of a desktop printer producing a weekly newsletter to inform his neighbors, lodge brothers, co-religionists, or co-conspirators? Perhaps more to the point today, does the privilege also protect the proprietor of a web log: the stereotypical “blogger” sitting in his pajamas at his personal computer posting on the World Wide Web his best product to inform whoever happens to browse his way? If not, why not? How could one draw a distinction consistent with the court’s vision of a broadly granted personal right? If so, then would it not be possible for a government official wishing to engage in the sort of unlawful leaking under investigation in the present controversy to call a trusted friend or a political ally, advise him to set up a web log (which I understand takes about three minutes) and then leak to him under a promise of confidentiality the information which the law forbids the official to disclose?... "

From pages 32-33:

"If the court extends the privilege only to a defined group of reporters, are we in danger of creating a “licensed” or “established” press? If we do so, have we run afoul of the breadth of the freedom of the press, that “fundamental personal right” for which the Court in Branzburg expressed its concern? 408 U.S. at 704. "

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

TREASONGATE: Prior High Profile Convictions Under 18 USC 794

[UPDATE: The first version of this report contained a mistake, I erred when I said Blakely's report accused the New York Times when I should have written New Yorker Magazine. I did mention Hersh and the link was correct, but I apologize for the mistake which has been corrected below.]

[ALERT: This web site has been hacked. Links to it lead a Bible studies site. If you type the URL in directly, it still goes here, but apparently many people are having trouble reaching the site. Please post entire articles. I've written to for help. ]

1. The Rosenbergs were convicted, sentenced, and put to death under 18 USC 794(b).

Please review the
United States Court of Appeals' Second Circuit decision in the Rosenberg prosecution (which was upheld by the United States Supreme Court) on the issue of 18 USC 794:

"Since two of the defendants must be put to death if the judgments stand, it goes without saying that we have scrutinized the record with extraordinary care to see whether it contains any of the errors asserted on this appeal...

The Supreme Court has held that the Espionage Act of 1917 makes criminal, and subject to the prescribed penalties, the communication of the prohibited information to the advantage of 'any foreign nation,' even if such communication does not injure this country. See Gorin v. United States, 312 U.S. 19, 29-30, 61 S.Ct. 429, 435, 85 L.Ed. 488, where the Court said: 'Nor do we think it necessary to prove that the information obtained was to be used to the injury of the United States. The statute is explicit in phrasing the crime of espionage as an act of obtaining information relating to the national defense 'to be used * * * to the advantage of any foreign nation.' No distinction is made between friend or enemy. Unhappily the status of a foreign government may change. The evil which the statute punishes is the obtaining or furnishing of this guarded information, either to our hurt or another's gain.' 2 Accordingly, the trial judge, in the case at bar, properly instructed the jury as follows: 'I charge you that whether the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was an ally or friendly nation during the period of the alleged conspiracy is immaterial..." (emphasis added)

2. Jonathan Pollard was convicted and sentenced to life in prison under 18 USC 794(c).

It's interesting to note that Mr. Pollard's
appeals have been denied by none other than Thomas Hogan, Chief Justice of the US District Court for the Disctrict of Columbia. This is the same Justice Hogan who denied Judith Miller's ridiculous arguments.

Mark Kleiman, one of the few bloggers who has covered the applicability of the the Espionage Act (18 USC 793 and 794) to the facts of the Plame outing, covered Hogan's comments:

"[Chief U.S. District Judge Thomas F.] Hogan said Miller was mistaken in her belief that she was defending a free press. He stressed that the government source she 'alleges she is protecting' had already waived her promise of confidentiality...

' This is not a case of a "whistle-blower" revealing secret information to Miller... It's a case in which the information she was given and her potential use of it was a crime... This is very different than a whistle-blower outing government misconduct.' "

It's also interesting to note that Ted Olson was one of the lawyers who represented Pollard in his appeal.

3. Aldrich Ames was convicted, and sentenced to life in prison under 18 USC 794.

Joe Wilson said, “Naming her this way would have compromised every operation, every relationship, every network with which she had been associated in her entire career. This is the stuff of Kim Philby and Aldrich Ames.”

Didn't he also say that he wanted to see Karl Rove frogmarched out of the White House? There's a law that could see that happen, Joe. Why don't you invoke it?


Government report, titled, "Report of the Commission on Protecting and Reducing Government Secrecy"

, had this to say about Ames' conviction and 18 USC 794 (page a-84):

"According to data gathered by the Department of Justice, there were 67 indictments under the espionage laws between 1975 and August 1996. Figures compiled by the Department of Defense Security Institute show 86 new espionage cases reported between 1975 and 1995. (Both sets of materials are on file at the Commission offices.) Aldrich Ames was indicted under 18 U.S.C. 794(c) of the Espionage Act for a conspiracy “to directly or indirectly communicate, deliver or transmit . . . documents and information related to the national defense . . . to a foreign government or a representative or officer thereof . . . with the intent or reason to believe such information could be used to the injury of the United States or to the advantage of a foreign government.” His wife, Rosario, was also indicted for conspiracy under a separate provision of the Act, 18 U.S.C. 793(g), for “a willful combination or agreement” with her husband “to communicate, deliver or transmit . . . documents relating to the national defense . . . to persons not authorized to receive them.” Both also were indicted on tax fraud charges. Both subsequently pled guilty, with Aldrich Ames sentenced to life imprisonment without parole and Rosario Ames to a five-year term."

4. Robert Hansen was convicted and sentenced to life in prison under 18 USC 794.

Examine the Government's indictments of Hansen.


As the cases above illustrate, the motive the informant may have for breaking the Espionage law, 18 USC 794, is totally irrelevant. The Rosenbergs and Pollard have both argued that their intention was to help an ally, not harm the United States. The courts' held that the law doesn't care what their motives were.

Walter Pincus and The Washington Post reported on Ocotber 4th, 2003:

"The leak of a CIA operative's name has also exposed the identity of a CIA front company, potentially expanding the damage caused by the original disclosure, Bush administration officials said yesterday...

After the name of the company was broadcast yesterday, administration officials confirmed that it was a CIA front...

The inadvertent disclosure of the name of a business affiliated with the CIA underscores the potential damage to the agency and its operatives caused by the leak of Plame's identity. Intelligence officials have said that once Plame's job as an undercover operative was revealed, other agency secrets could be unraveled and her sources might be compromised or endangered.

A former diplomat who spoke on condition of anonymity said yesterday that every foreign intelligence service would run Plame's name through its databases within hours of its publication to determine if she had visited their country and to reconstruct her activities.

'That's why the agency is so sensitive about just publishing her name,' the former diplomat said."

Just do the math. Valerie Plame was a CIA operative working on WMD proliferation issues. Her identity and the front company she worked for were outed by Novak. Her "undercover" status was outed by Corn, and she outed her own likeness (which shocked CIA officials) by posing for a photograph which was published in Vanity Fair.

Why should the leakers in Treasongate be treated any differently than those convicted under 18 USC 794 in the past? The statute provides no defense based upon motive. But seriously, does anybody still believe the Bush administration violated the Espionage Act and exposed themeselves to death or life in prison just to "smear" Joe Wilson? Motive doesn't matter to the law, other than its usefulness as an evidentiary device.

According to the only judges who have seen the most secret evidence that Special Counsel Fitzgerald has uncovered, serious crimes have been committed.

Have a look at Lawrence O'Donnel's report in the Huffington Post of July 7, 2005, a report Citizen Spook regards as one of the most important media revelations in US history, which states:

"In February, Circuit Judge David Tatel joined his colleagues’ order to Cooper and Miller despite his own, very lonely finding that indeed there is a federal privilege for reporters that can shield them from being compelled to testify to grand juries and give up sources. He based his finding on Rule 501 of the Federal Rules of Evidence, which authorizes federal courts to develop new privileges 'in the light of reason and experience.' Tatel actually found that reason and experience 'support recognition of a privilege for reporters’ confidential sources.' But Tatel still ordered Cooper and Miller to testify because he found that the privilege had to give way to 'the gravity of the suspected crime.'

Judge Tatel’s opinion has eight blank pages in the middle of it where he discusses the secret information the prosecutor has supplied only to the judges to convince them that the testimony he is demanding is worth sending reporters to jail to get. The gravity of the suspected crime is presumably very well developed in those redacted pages. Later, Tatel refers to '[h]aving carefully scrutinized [the prosecutor’s] voluminous classified filings.

Some of us have theorized that the prosecutor may have given up the leak case in favor of a perjury case, but Tatel still refers to it simply as a case 'which involves the alleged exposure of a covert agent.' Tatel wrote a 41-page opinion in which he seemed eager to make new law -- a federal reporters’ shield law -- but in the end, he couldn’t bring himself to do it in this particular case. In his final paragraph, he says he 'might have' let Cooper and Miller off the hook '[w]ere the leak at issue in this case less harmful to national security.' (emphasis added by CS)

Tatel’s colleagues are at least as impressed with the prosecutor’s secret filings as he is. One simply said 'Special Counsel’s showing decides the case.' "

All the judges who have seen the prosecutor’s secret evidence firmly believe he is pursuing a very serious crime, and they have done everything they can to help him get an indictment."


KUDOS to Tony Blakely who wrote a very interesting article suggesting that Seymour Hersh was guilty of violating the Espionage Act when he revealed details regarding US intelligence pertaining to Iraq. This column is from January 2005:

"Title 18 United States Code section 794, subsection (b) prohibits anyone "in time of war, with intent that the same shall be communicated to the enemy [from publishing] any information with respect to the movement, numbers, or disposition of any of the Armed Forces ... of the United States ... or supposed plans or conduct of any ... military operations ... or any other information relating to the public defense, which might be useful to the enemy ... [this crime is punishable] by death or by imprisonment for any term of years or for life."

Subsection (a) of that statute prohibits anyone "with ... reason to believe that it is to be used to the injury of the United States or to the advantage of a foreign nation, communicates ... to any representative, officer, agent, employee, subject or citizen thereof, either directly or indirectly, any information relating to the national defense, shall be punished by death or by imprisonment for any term of years or for life."

I am not an expert on these federal code sections, but a common sense reading of their language would suggest, at the least, that federal prosecutors should review the information disclosed by Mr. Hersh to determine whether or not his conduct falls within the proscribed conduct of the statute.

In the fairly recent past, at least one journalist writing for Jane's Publications has been successfully prosecuted under the statute, freedom of speech and the press not being a defense to espionage. Remember, in the famous Pentagon Papers case, the issue was prior restraint. Could the government stop a newspaper from publishing government secrets relating not to current operations but to prior planning? The answer then was no. But in the current matter of Seymour Hersh and the New Yorker, they have been free to publish the article. The question is whether or not any legal consequences attach to that decision.

I was shocked when I read Mr. Hersh's article. Note the tenses he uses to describe American military action: "The American commando task force ... is now working," "has been conducting secret reconnaissance." In other words, Mr. Hersh is revealing to all the world, including the Iranian government, that our commandos are currently behind enemy lines in Iran on a dangerous and vital military assignment. "

Full article here.

Wow. What the hell? How did this go unpunished? Aren't we at war? Are we really so docile, America? Are we really going to allow them to do this to us?

When is the main stream media going to pay attention to the "eight redacted pages", the Judges' comments about the damage to national security, and the actual laws that have been broken, especially 18 USC 794?

If you just look at the facts that are not even in dispute, they prove that Plame and Brewster Jennings were outed, you have prima facie convictions just sitting their staring America in the face.

Condi Rice has admitted that Khan's cooperation was leaked by the Government. She's admitted the Government violated 18 USC 794(b). It's out in the open. When will our nation take a closer look at the Khan leak and this trend of outing intelligence assets?

The bogus Bush mantra for the Iraq war was WMD.

But when our intelligence assets get close to real WMD threats and genuine issues of WMD proliferation, people like Sibel Edmonds, John O'Neil, Able Danger, Brewster Jennings, and the intelligence divisions involved with "turning" Khan are actually found to be doing their job, the Bush administration has exhibited an MO for shutting them down at all costs.

What is going on America, and what are you going to do about it?

by Citizen Spook

A very special thanks to the following for posting CS reports

Jef Rense

Yurica Report



apologies if I've missed anybody

Monday, August 22, 2005

TREASONGATE: The Challenge of 18 USC 794...

[UPDATE: United States v. Morison is a district court decision, but it was upheld by the Supreme Court, Rehnquist delivered the decision]


“Naming her this way would have compromised every operation, every relationship, every network with which she had been associated in her entire career. This is the stuff of Kim Philby and Aldrich Ames.”

That was Joe Wilson speaking to David Corn in
The Nation on July 16th.

Joe Wilson, if he does not want to remain looking like an obvious Bush facilitator of Treason, should demand the Bush administration be prosecuted under 18 USC 794 for Treason since that is the law which sent Aldrich Ames away to prison for life.


"Corn then published a detailed exploration of the law to ensure that other journalists, as well as regular readers of The Nation, understood all of the legalities involved."

(From Page 349 of Wilson's book, "The Politics of Truth".)

David Corn, you are challenged to publish a genuine "detailed explopration of the law to ensure that other journalists, as well as regular readers of The Nation", understand all of the legalities involved, particularly 18 USC 794 which you have ignored?


thread at was locked yesterday when the moderators challenged Citizen Spook to provide a "reliable source" for my reporting.

DU, I have given two reliable sources:

Source #1: Title 18 of our United States Code, 18 USC 794. See
my analysis of it here

It's an impeccable source, but for some reason your site does not have any discussion or analysis on it. Why not?

Source #2: The District Court's decision in
United States v. Morison (upheld by the US Supreme Court)

I suggest you read my sources carefully and then report back to your readership with your own analysis.


Clifford May did an excellent job of
analyzing David Corn's outing of Plame's status, but May and the National Review have failed miserably to cover the applicable laws to the Treason before us, 18 USC 794. Why?


Don't get distracted by the pundits America. The law is the only source you need. Anybody who truly wishes to see the Bush administration and its facilitators pay for their Treasons against this country should analyze
18 USC 794 carefully and then ask why none of the pundits from the Conservative media or the Liberal media have brought a detailed, impartial analysis of this law to your attention.

The USA is the victim of Treason here, not the Wilson's. We suffer for this destruction of national intelligence assets. Our security has been challenged.

This is a very simple issue. We have laws against Treason, why won't the the main stream media or the main stream blogosphere discuss the law our Government has enacted to punish Treason?

There are other scandals that deserve your attention; election fraud, The Downing Street memo and the continuing Iraq war, but demanding a national debate on the violations of 18 USC 794 in the Plame leak and the
Khan leak outweigh those issues right now because convictions are easily attainable under 18 USC 794 based on just the facts we know.

Start there America, get the indictments sorted out through pressuring the media to cover the law, and the rats will roll over on each other faster than you can imagine.

The law is clear, concise and available to the Special Prosecutor and the sitting grand juries as well as future grand juries.

I also challenge all American citizens to learn about your Constitutional powers as the
Fourth Branch of US Government.

Citizen Spook's identity is irrelevant, as is the merit of any "political" analysis of 18 USC 794...the law stands alone. Media traitors can be located, spotted and outed based upon their decision to cover or not cover 18 USC 794 and United States v, Morison.

America, demand a national debate concerning these laws. Since the media was so driven to analyze the IIPA, why is that same media involved in a total black out of 18 USC 794?

If Joe Wilson and David Corn are not in cahoots with the White House, they can discredit Citizen Spook's allegations by publishing exhaustive analysis of 18 USC 794, discussing previous convictions under that law and and analyzing the line of cases that have used the law.

Friday, August 19, 2005

TREASONGATE: IN CAHOOTS -- How The White House, Wilson, Novak, Corn and Plame Conspired for Treason

[UPDATE: Aug. 20.2005, 10:12 a.m. Since I first posted this report last night, reader Ron has informed me that David Corn published, on August 8th, a watered down synthesis of previous Citizen Spook reports on the Controlling Laws of Treasongate. Corn did not mention, or link to, Citizen Spook. Also, comments at his site were mysteriously disabled. DEVELOPING.]

Actions speak. Words lie. Action follows motive. Motivation is a microscope. You must think like a spook in order to understand the totality of these crimes. This report will challenge you to focus like a genius intelligence operative, to look a few moves ahead...and behind.

We've been caught in a web of deceit, so intricate, so devious, so arrogant and dark that there may actually be no escape. If "we the people" don't make those responsible for Treasongate pay for their sins against this country, we deserve everything they've got planned for us down the road to perdition.


For the last two years, we've all heard about "the smear campaign" hurled upon Joe Wilson by the Bush administration to punish him for writing the New York Times oped concerning the fake Niger documents. Revenge and political payback is the motivation universally attributed to the Bush syndicate.

It's bullshit. Joe Wilson was not smeared. He went from relative obscurity to national fame, book deals, talk show circuit, hero status accepting, freedom fighting, whistleblowing, saintly coronation. None of it is deserved.

Joe Wilson is in cahoots with the Bush Administration along with David Corn, Bob Novak and Valerie Plame Wilson, a cast of spooks who have only just been outed with the writing of this article. They've carefully scripted this entire affair to shield themselves from prosecution for monolithic treasons against US citizens and our military. Treasongate, Rovegate, Leakgate, whatever you want to call it, is, in reality, an intricate version of hide and seek where the "perpetraitors" have been controlling both sides of the game.

Regardless of the crimes committed by this and past administrations, as long as their spin can divide the people on political lines, justice, true justice, will never be served. If the crime can be given a political spin, the perps can literally get away with any crime, even Treason. They've carefully crafted both sides of this national debate to give both liberal and conservative pundits enough ammunition to keep a heated firefight going in the media. The smokescreen generated by this firefight has diverted our attention from examining:

1. The controlling laws applicable to these facts.

2. The motivations of the Bush administration, Joe Wilson and his wife,
and the two news villains responsible for initiating this ruse; Bob
Novak, and David Corn.

3. The damage to our national security caused by the leaking of Plame's
name and front company (Brewster Jennings & Associates) as well as
the damage caused by other leaks which show a Bush Administration Modus
Operandi (MO) of outing intelligence assets for nefarious purposes.

Their media ruse has, so far, been a complete success. Not one major publication has examined the controlling laws, Espionage statutes found in 18 USC 793 and 794. They've steered the country away from analyzing Plame's outing as espionage by repeating ad nauseam that the
motivation for the leak was "political payback." This has enabled them to divide and conquer "we the people" along party lines.

Political payback can be spun, espionage cannot. This is why Joe Wilson, David Corn and all of the liberal media have steered wide of calling this leak exactly what it is, Treason:


The meticulous outing of Plame and the media circus that ensued was designed as a smokescreen to cloud the truth and the law while they exposed CIA networks operating to stop WMD proliferation. Genuine agents and sources were left out in the cold while targets were warned and allowed to escape.

This is not easy to comprehend. So it's imperative to suspend judgment while you examine this. You must be an impartial juror. Listen objectively to the facts. Analyze the application of those facts to the law. Consider the motives of those involved and then look for MO to back it up.


The one law everybody has heard of regarding this matter is the Intelligence Identities Protection Act of 1982 (IIPA). In my two part series, TREASONGATE: The Controlling Law

Part 1 Part 2, I explained that, despite the media feeding frenzy involved with analyzing the IIPA, it is totally irrelevant with regards to the Plame leak.

[I strongly urge the reader to carefully study my previous reports explaining these laws before continuing here.]

The IIPA is an intricate piece of work that has a ton of wiggle room while Title 18 of our United States Code, particularly 18 USC 793 and more importantly 794, the Espionage statutes, have virtually no wiggle room for the perpetraitors responsible for leaking Plame's identity (Novak) and her covert status (Corn).

Ever since July 16th 2003, when David Corn first discussed the applicability of the IIPA to these facts, the IIPA has been the sole focus of discussion in the main stream media and the blogosphere.

The concept that all of these spook perpetraitors put their faith in was that if Joe Wilson was talking about the IIPA as the controlling law, then the IIPA would be accepted, by the media and the people, as the controlling law, since Joe Wilson, more than anybody, would want to see the evil Bush administration put away for outing his CIA wife. And when Joe Wilson issued statements to the effect that conviction under the IIPA was probably not going to happen, the rest of us could just let this blow over while a few Bush operatives were given slaps on the wrist.

All the while, Joe Wilson was running protection for the leakers because Wilson and his wife are Bush administration double agent operatives who have something to hide, something big, something towering.


Let me give a short recap for those readers who are not aware of the analysis for
18 USC 794(b)

18 USC 794(b) carries a maximum penalty of death or life in prison.

18 USC 794(b) mandates prosecution of anybody who, in time of war, intentionally communicates information relating to the public defense which might be useful to the enemy.

Question 1: Were we in a time of war when CIA operative Valerie Plame Wilson was outed?

Answer: Yes. Despite recent attempts by the Bush administration to shift the policy lingo from GWOT, "global war on terror", to GSAVE,"global struggle against violent extremism", we were "in time of war" back in June/July 2003. And our soldiers are still dying on the same battlefield today. We are still "in time of war". If you have any doubt, just ask the families of our soldiers who died that battlefield. Ask them if we were/are in a time of war. Next question.

Question 2: Was information that related to the public defense communicated?

Answer: The information communicated to Bob Novak outed a CIA operative who coordinated covert agents working on WMD proliferation issues. Nothing could be more related to the "public defense". The answer is yes.

Question 3: Was the information intentionally communicated to the enemy?

Answer: Federal case law has consistently held that there is no difference, for purposes of proving "intent", between communicating the relevant information to a spy and communicating it to the press, since the whole world will be notified of the information upon publication. The answer is yes.

Question 4: "Might" the information be useful to the enemy?

Answer: A CIA operative involved with WMD proliferation and the name of a CIA front company used for such intelligence purposes were exposed. This law does not require that the information communicated... must be useful... to the enemy, 18 USC 794(b) only requires that the information... might be useful... to the enemy. The answer is yes, the information might be useful to the enemy.

Question 5: Who is the enemy?

Answer: The terrorists.

Please note that the statute does not require the perp to communicate directly to the enemy, 794(b) only requires that the perp intends for the information to be communicated to the enemy.

There's no wiggle room. Everybody in the Government who holds a security clearance had to sign a
non-disclosure agreement which warns that they can be prosecuted under 18 USC 794 if they violate that agreement. Not that 794(b) requires the information communicated to be classified, it doesn't.

The non-disclosure agreement warns about violating 794(b), so let's not pretend it's an obscure law. Everybody involved was aware of it. This is the United States Code, federal law of the land.

Once you understand 18 USC 794(b), air tight convictions for the Plame leakers become apparent. There's nothing to argue about. There's no wiggle room. The law was drafted to stop espionage, to stop people from exposing our intelligence assets. Maybe you're familiar with them; the CIA, NSA, FBI, departments of our Government we the people pay hundreds of billions for, to protect us from being attacked here at home, and to protect our soldiers abroad.

18 USC 794 has been used to put traitors away for life.
It's the law of the land.

Their ruse involved spinning the Plame leak as revenge and political payback connecting it to the decision to go to war thereby causing "we the people" to become divided. Then they threw a complicated statute into the mix, the IIPA, which allows convincing arguments, both for and against conviction under these facts, so the political smokescreen expanded to an opaque impenetrable thickness.

The national debate that went into the IIPA was intense. Focus that same amount of media energy on 794(b), and there will be a genuine revolution in this country. Imagine the talking head pundits stuck for words, silenced by facts, unable to divide an educated population. Most Americans, spanning the entire political spectrum, are capable of understanding that these controlling federal laws, 18 USC 793 and 794, have been broken, if those laws were sufficiently explained to them.

Following such a national debate, US citizens will demand to know why the Bush administration risked prosecution under such punishing laws. And they will also demand to know why Joe Wilson hasn't been calling for prosecution under these laws.

Once we the people start asking the right questions, the Government and media spin trance fails, they lose control of our minds, and we begin to think for ourselves, to use our minds instead of allowing our minds be used by the enemy.

They created "wiggle room" where there was no wiggle room by guiding your attention, from both liberal and conservative media sources, to the irrelevant Intelligence Identities Protection Act.

Violation of 18 USC 794(b) can lead to the death penalty or life in prison, a much greater punishment than under the IIPA. So you would expect that those involved with outing a CIA operative and a CIA front company might think twice about breaking this law. And this leads to
the following questions about motivation which really get to the heart of this intricate ruse:


No. They aren’t' that stupid. These are intelligent people who have procured the Executive Branch of the US Government. 18 USC 794 has put people like Aldrich Ames away for life. This is a very serious law. Nobody in the Bush administration was going to break it just to bitch
slap Joe Wilson. That's the fecal toast Joe Wilson and David Corn originally served over two years ago, a meal that has been uniformly consumed by America, so please don't eat it anymore. It's a lie, and a rather bad one at that.

Focus on the penalty; death or life in prison. The motivation of a bitch slap does not fit the crime. The Bush administration must have had a greater motivation to risk prosecution under 794(b).

Furthermore, they had to know they were turning Joe Wilson into a star the liberal media would canonize. They did no harm to Joe Wilson, and they did no harm to his wife. This so called outing" scandal is actually cover for their conspiratorial treason, the betrayal of her network and the work it was doing.

Valerie Plame Wilson = Double Agent

Plame and Wilson are double agents in the "Intelligence war" going on between the treasonous Bush administration and divisions of US Intelligence and the military.

The Plame/Wilson double agent status becomes obvious when you examine Joe Wilson's actions under the electron microscope of motivation:


“Naming her this way would have compromised every operation, every relationship, every network with which she had been associated in her entire career. This is the stuff of Kim Philby and Aldrich Ames.”

That is a direct quote given by Joseph Wilson to David Corn for the infamous (and treasonous)
report published on July 16, 2003,in The Nation; wherein Corn leaked Plame's "undercover" status as a CIA officer.

"This is the stuff of...Aldrich Ames."

It's really quite an amazing quote which history may record as being the smoking dung gun that toppled this administration and put Joe Wilson and the other co-conspirators behind bars.

USA, you've been hoodwinked big time.

Aldrich Ames is serving life in prison for his violation of 18 USC 794. He leaked the identity of several NOC CIA Officers to the Soviets. So, Ambassador Joseph Wilson IV, if you are so outraged at the Bush administration, why aren't you screaming for a prosecution of the
people responsible for outing your wife under the same statute? You've compared the crimes of Aldrich Ames to those involved with the outing of your wife, so why aren't you pounding your fist for the special prosecutor to invoke the same law which put Ames away for life? You've
never even mentioned it.


Wilson certainly can't claim ignorance of the law. He's issued detailed analysis of the Intelligence Identities Protection Act, on the record, during a public Q&A at one of his glorious book signings,
recorded by William Kaminsky, wherein Wilson discussed the intricacies of the IIPA and explained in great detail that convictions under that act were unlikely. He exhibited a great knowledge of that law while forwarding the diversionary spin started by his pal, David

From Kaminsky's blog :

"Meeting Joe Wilson (Part 1 of 2)

On Thursday night, the venerable and most definitely left-leaning Harvard Book Store held a lecture/question and answer session/book signing event with Ambassador Joseph Wilson...

First of all, Ambassador Wilson has every confidence in the dedication and prosecutorial skills of Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald.

However, Wilson concedes a point many of the Administration's defenders make: it will be extremely hard to convict anyone of violating the most serious (and most often discussed) of the applicable laws, namely the Intelligence Identities Protection Act of 1982 (United States Code, Title 50, Sections 421-426). Rather, Wilson thought that a prosecutor wanting a winnable case would have to settle for the weaker charge of disclosure of classified information (United States Code, Title 18, Section 798)...While technically disclosure of classified information can be a felony carrying the same maximum penalty of a fine and 10
years imprisonment as violation of the Intelligence Identities Protection Act, it apparently can also be prosecuted as a misdemeanor charge, and this is what Wilson thought

Hey Joe, you're quick on your feet whipping out that 18 USC 798 softball law along with the IIPA, so why don't you flip a few sections back to 793 and 794?

Wilson might answer, "Well Spook, thing is, this was a smear, I tell ya. I was shmeered, Spook. They shmeered me, man. They wanted to hurt me and my CIA wife real bad because I'm an award winning courageous patriot who stood up to their forgeries and told the world from the
beacon of the New York Times. It's not espionage. It's a smear campaign. I don’t think we really need to distract the population with the Espionage act Spook, do we?"

Well, Joe, I think we do need to distract the population. I mean, after all, you told David Corn that one of our "star" intelligence assets was outed thereby crippling many operations, scattering agents to the four winds and possibly the grim reaper's door, crushing national security.

"This is the stuff of Aldrich Ames".

Sorry Joe, but motive, while an excellent tool of analysis, is irrelevant to the determination of
whether the Espionage laws were broken. The law doesn't give a rats ass what the Bush administration's motive was for breaking the law.

The law does not provide a motive defense. They can tell the judge and jury at trial, "Yeah, so we outed her network, but we did it to shmeer Joe Wilson, not to cause damage to national security." But the cold hard fact remains,18 USC 794 doesn't care. There's no "motive" requirement. Sorry Joe, this is treason. You said it yourself, "This is the stuff of Aldrich Ames". What an amazing quote.

The cold, made of steel, unbendable law, 18 USC 794, is the reason Wilson has been guiding American attention spans to the IIPA. As long as we were focused on the IIPA, convictions would be very hard to come by.

Wilson was running protection.

Back to Kaminsky's report on Wilson's book signing:

"Wilson offered two reasons for his pessimism:

1. The Intelligence Identities Protection Act explicitly says that it is a valid defense versus prosecution to claim an operative's identity has previously been revealed...

It is clear that the Administration's defenders intend to use this defense...

But anyways, when all is said and done, this isn't the main reason why Ambassador Wilson is pessimistic about the prospects of a successful prosecution under the Intelligence Identities Protection Act. Instead, his main reason is:

1. Right at its outset, the Act qualifies that disclosing a covert operative's identity is illegal only if it is done intentionally and in the knowledge that the government is still actively maintaining a cover for operative...

Wilson said he believed that anyone accused under the Act thus could successfully mount the defense that he or she knew only that Valerie Plame was employed by the CIA and not that the CIA actively maintained a cover (or covers) for her as a operative in the Clandestine Service who was active in the last 5 years."

Look at Wilson go. He's got that spin down pat. On the one hand, he's literally crying in public over the outing of his CIA wife, "If I could give you back your anonymity....", while on the other hand, he creates the Bush admin defense all in one gasp of legal puke. He exhibits a knowledge of various US Code as well as a perfect analysis of the IIPA, while steering the entire country away from the controlling law, 18 USC 794 and 793.

Have a look at Joe Wilson's book, "The Politics of Truth", and look for any mention of 18 USC 793 or 794. It's not there.

His books starts with a section called, "Anatomy Of A Smear":

"...a vindictive government has used the press in order to try to destroy an opponent." (pg. 2)

The Plame leak only made the Bush administration appear guilty as sin regarding the Niger documents and the fraudulent reasons for going to war, and I submit to you that this is exactly what the Bush administration and its operatives intended. The decision to go to war was a political issue, and the country is divided along party lines, so it's safe for them to risk the appearance of guilt by "outing" Wilson's wife and looking guilty as long as Wilson, Corn and everybody else repeats the mantra that it was done for revenge, political payback, etc. But the true motivation was to stop the agents she was working with from gathering evidence of mass murder; past present and future.

To smear Wilson is ridiculous considering the possible penalty for Treason, and to smear him knowing it makes you look guilty of fixing the intelligence is even more insane unless that's exactly what you were trying to do...look insane.

To out Plame and smear Wilson as a smokescreen for a greater sin, a greater Treason, a Treason of past and future murder of innocent that is a motivation that warranted risking their violation of 18 USC 794.

Their gambit was centered on Wilson controlling the media circus, steering everybody towards the IIPA, and away from 18 USC 794.

If Wilson, cast in the starring role as the husband filled with anger for the damage and danger put on his wife, was talking about the IIPA, well then, who could argue with him? Who had more motivation for wanting the leakers put away than Joe Wilson?

Nobody,...if you believe this crap.

And Joe Wilson not only took the baton from David Corn regarding the IIPA, but he further protected the Bush leakers even from prosecution under that irrelevant law by stating his opinion that convictions were unlikely due to the "wiggle room" written into the IIPA.

Mr. Wilson, you brought up the name Aldrich Ames, so why don't you bring up the law he was convicted under? In the two plus years this script (and that is exactly what he's reading from) has been played out, you haven't mentioned the controlling law, 18 USC 794 and 793. You haven't called for the people responsible for outing your wife and her entire CIA network to be thrown in jail with Aldrich Ames for life. No, instead you've conspired to fool the country into burying its head in your smokescreen.

Chris Matthews told Joe Wilson that Karl Rove said, "Wilson's wife is fair game."

From Wilson's book, page 1:

" ' Wilson's wife is fair game.' Those are fighting words for any man..."

And you fight back with the lame Intelligence Identities Protection Act, Mr. Wilson? Your actions don't back up your words. Your motivation must be lacking since you could have responded in kind with your own fighting words. Had you responded as follows, perhaps we could believe you, Joe Wilson. Here's what you should have said:

"The people who outed my wife are traitors, no different than Aldrich
Ames who was convicted under 18 USC 794. They deserve to be put away
for life in the same cell block for Treason."

But you didn't say that Mr. Wilson. And if I'm wrong about you and your wife, let's see you start saying it. Get in your Jaguar and ride, bang the drums for Treason, Treason that exposed your wife endangering her life and the lives of her network. Your family was cast in the spotlight by the Bush administration who exposed your loved ones to dangerous covert agents the world over. Why aren't you demanding justice and prosecutions under 18 USC 794(b) for such a dastardly deed?

Wilson's book references the IIPA on pages; xxxviii-xxxix, xl, 4, 346, 349, 350-351, 358-360, 384-385, 388, 395-396, and 445. Do you know how many times 18 USC 793 and 794 are mentioned? None, nada, zero. Why do you think that is? Because Wilson never heard of these laws? No. This CIA couple know the law inside out. And they know the carnage that outing her caused to the operations and operatives she was overseeing, people that trusted her whose lives were in her hands.

From page 446 of Wilson's book:

"We worry about our personal security, but there is little we can do."

But nobody dared publish a photo of Plame...until she posed with her husband for the January '94 issue of Vanity Fair. Wasn't it bad enough that her name got out, that her front company was exposed? Why would she follow through by mugging for the camera in Vanity Fair? Isn't that just putting her in more jeopardy? Isn't that making it even easier for enemy agents both here and in foreign lands to reconcile her likeness?

You'd think, out of respect for her fellow agents she'd lay low and stay out of the spotlight, but "Valerie was always a star in her profession". (page 446)

Now more than ever.

It's open season on the NOCS she supervised, the NOCS out there in the field gathering evidence on who?

Who do you think?

From page 447 of Wilson's book:

"We had assumed that on the day the Novak article appeared, every intelligence office in Washington, and probably all those around the world, were running Valerie's name through their databases. Foreign intelligence services would not attack us, but they might as well threaten any contacts Valerie might have made in their countries, and they would certainly be eager to unearth operations she might have been involved in.

International terrorist organizations were a different story, however. There was a history of international terrorists attacking exposed officers."

So they go on the cover of Vanity Fair like this was a bad episode of Jane Bond.

And Wilson goes on the Daily Show for jokes with Jon Stewart. From page 358:

"Jon was so humorous that I found myself laughing heartily right along with the audience..."

From page 384:

"An officer had been exposed, an act that threatened many intelligence professionals."

It's hilarious, isn't it, Mr. Wilson?

In "The CIA at War", by Ronald Kessler, the Vanity Fair photo was discussed on pages 344-345:
"Their claims to have been victimized by the Bush white house were destroyed when they agreed to be photographed sitting in their Jaguar for the January issue of Vanity Fair. Wilson claimed that the fact that his forty-year old wife wore sunglasses and a scarf disguised her. But anyone she dealt with overseas could clearly recognize her..."

" 'They risked undermining any possible prosecution by their public statements and appearances,' said John L. Martin who, as Chief of the Justice Department's counterespionage section, was in charge of supervising leak investigations. 'The scarf and the sunglasses worn in the Vanity Fair picture was a sham.' "

"In fact, the CIA never would have given permission to appear in a photograph. No doubt because of that, she never asked. Agency officials were stunned."

"...Not only had Wilson and Plame subverted their own posturing as victims of the Bush White House, they had undermined the integrity of the CIA's clandestine program to collect intelligence using covert officers. If a CIA officer took her duty to remain in a clandestine role so lightly it could make agents leery of risking their lives to provide intelligence to other CIA officers."

Wilson and Plame behaved as if they were trying to make the Bush administration's case for a defense to the IIPA. By showing up in public as they have done, they lend credence to the Bush talking points which argue that Plame's status at the CIA was not covert and that blowing her cover was no big deal. Their gambit was based on the arrogant self belief they could trick the nation into believing its laws against espionage don't exist.

Under 18 USC 794, it doesn't matter if she was covert, it only matters whether her name and position were "related to the public defense". Don't forget that State Department memo though. The paragraph her name appeared in was marked "(S)" for secret, and according to a Bush Executive order, that meant her name and job were classified info. The memo is prima facie proof of her status.

Instpundit(December 3rd, 2003) has some interesting insights about the actions of Plame/Wilson:


Former ambassador Joseph Wilson has been quite protective of his wife, Valerie Plame, in the weeks since her cover as a CIA operative was blown.

'My wife has made it very clear that -- she has authorized me to say this -- she would rather chop off her right arm than say anything to the press and she will not allow herself to be photographed,' he declared in October on 'Meet the Press'.

But that was before Vanity Fair came calling.

The January issue features a two-page photo of Wilson and the woman the magazine calls 'the most famous female spy in America,' a 'slim 40-year-old with white-blond hair and a big, bright smile.' They are sitting in their Jaguar...

Sorry -- if you're really an undercover spy, and really worried about national security, you don't do this sort of thing...

Serious people don't do self-promoting spreads in Vanity Fair where important questions of national security are involved...Not knowing the underlying facts, I have to make my judgment by the behavior of the parties. And judging from that, the scandal is bogus, and Wilson is a self-promoter who can't be trusted. That's my judgment on this matter. Yours, of course, may vary. But if you see Wilson as anything other than a cheesy opportunist, well, then yours really varies...."

Mine really does vary, I see him as a facilitator of Treason, the ringleader on an intricate plot to both expose Plame's WMD network and to also protect her and the Bush administration from serious legal scrutiny of their collective Treason.

The Vanity Fair publicity, the book deal, the Daily Show appearance, the awards he's accepted...all of it was designed by these spooks to provide cover under the IIPA to distract those honest, conservative leaning citizens and media personnel, who might have been sympathetic to Plame being exposed.

The actions of Wilson, despite his tough words, have been calculated to divide the left and the right. You have to give these spooks credit for bravado and hutzpa.

More from Instapundit:

"Tom Maguire says I told you so. He also notes that saying that Wilson is bogus isn't quite the same as saying that the scandal is bogus. I guess that's right, in theory. But the claim that Plame was endangered is what drove this scandal, and it came from Wilson, who seems to be, well, bogus... I suppose it's still theoretically possible that somebody in the White House deliberately and illegally outed Plame as a way of getting revenge on Wilson for his dumb -- and deeply unprofessional -- oped about his "mission" to Niger. But if you assume that nothing that Wilson says can be relied on because he's a self-promoter who'll stretch a fact to get attention, which seems extremely plausible, then you're not left with much evidence. And the
Wilson/Plame couple certainly isn't acting like Plame's life is in danger. They're acting like opportunists milking their 15 minutes and hoping for a lucrative book contract. So pardon me if I conclude that their actions speak louder than Wilson's words..."

Wilson and Plame engaged in a course of action that was designed to discredit the investigation.

Are you starting to get the picture?


Corn was the first person to put the IIPA in the public eye. David Corn was now on my radar. I examined Wilson's book and found out, for the first time, that David Corn has been a big player in Treasongate. From The Politics of Truth, page 4:

"David Corn, from The Nation magazine, had alerted me and later written the first article pointing out that the disclosure by way of the Novak article might have violated the 1982 IIPA. But whether illegal or not, it was still an unwelcome intrusion into my wife's private life..."

So David Corn was the first pawn used to disseminate the spin that the IIPA was the controlling law. And look at Wilson sew the subtle innuendo "whether it was illegal or not." On page 349, Wilson explains Corn's purpose:

"Corn then published a detailed exploration of the law to ensure that other journalists, as well as regular readers of The Nation, understood all of the legalities involved."

That's some damning evidence right there. Because we know that statement is a bold faced lie carefully designed to continue the illusion that the IIPA was the controlling law.


There’s more to Corn and The Nation than meets the eye. "Nobody owns The Nation" says the commercial being aired on Air America Radio. Bullshit.

The Nation also held a special function to present Joe Wilson with the first Ron Ridenhour award for Truth-Telling. It's just so damn transparent.

Clifford May's article,
"Who Exposed Secret Agent Plame?" published in National Review
online, July 15th 2005, makes a strong case that, while Novak was the first person to expose "Wilson's wife", Corn is actually the journalist responsible for first publishing Plame's undercover/covert status:

"This just in: Bob Novak did not reveal that Valerie Plame was an undercover agent for the CIA.

Read— or reread — his column from July 14, 2003. All Novak reports is that the wife of former Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson is 'an Agency operative on weapons of mass destruction'...

So if Novak did not reveal that Valerie Plame was a secret agent, who did? The evidence strongly suggests it was none other than Joe Wilson himself. Let me walk you through the steps that lead to this conclusion.

The first reference to Plame being a secret agent appears in The Nation, in an article by David Corn published July 16, 2003, just two days after Novak’s column appeared. It carried this lead: 'Did Bush officials blow the cover of a U.S. intelligence officer working covertly in a field of vital importance to national security — and break the law — in order to strike at a Bush administration critic and intimidate others?'

Since Novak did not report that Plame was 'working covertly' how did Corn know that’s what she had been doing?

Corn does not tell his readers and he has responded to a query from me only by pointing out that he was asking a question, not making a 'statement of fact.' But in the article, he asserts that Novak 'outed' Plame 'as an undercover CIA officer.' Again, Novak did not do that.
Rather, it is Corn who is, apparently for the first time, 'outing' Plame’s 'undercover' status.

Corn follows that assertion with a quote from Wilson saying, 'I will not answer questions about my wife.' Any reporter worth his salt would immediately wonder: Did Wilson indeed answer Corn’s questions about his wife — after Corn agreed not to quote his answers but to use them only on background? Read the rest of Corn’s piece and it’s difficult to believe anything else. Corn names no other sources for the information he provides — and he provides much more information than Novak revealed...

On what basis could Corn 'assume' that Plame was not only working covertly but was actually a 'top-secret' operative? And where did Corn get the idea that Plame had been 'outed' in order to punish Wilson? That is not suggested by anything in the Novak column...

The likely answer: The allegation that someone in the administration leaked to Novak as a way to punish Wilson was made by Wilson — to Corn. But Corn, rather than quote Wilson, puts the idea forward as his own.

Corn’s article then goes on to provide specific details about Plame’s undercover work, her 'dicey and difficult mission of tracking parties trying to buy or sell weapons of mass destruction or WMD material.' But how does Corn know about that? From what source could he have learned it?"

Don't misinterpret the meaning of Corn's involvement. Novak is not off the hook, he's responsible under 18 USC 794(b) for intentionally communicating information, related to the public defense, to the enemy, in a time of war, and he's also guilty of violating 18 USC 794(c) for
"conspiracy" to violate 18 USC 794(b), so he's in big trouble.

Corn's July 16th report, wherein he outed Plame's status as an "undercover CIA officer", puts him on the hook for violation of 18 USC 794(b) and (c) as well, since Plame's "status", that of "undercover CIA officer", was first published by Corn, not Novak.

Corn was the media ringleader on the left. Novak held that title on the right. And together they pulled the wool over the eyes of the Nation.

Moreover, it's no defense under 18 USC 793 and 794 that the perp have knowledge that the information communicated was officially classified as being "Secret" as long as the information was "related to the public defense" and was intentionally communicated to the enemy, in a time of war.

Also, federal case law, particularly
US v. Morison, holds that First Amendment "freedom of the press" arguments are not a defense for violators of the Espionage statutes, 793 and 794. Corn and Novak are both guilty of Treason, if not directly under 794(b), indirectly, under 794(c) for conspiracy.

Clifford May raised another interesting question:

"Corn concludes that Plame’s career 'has been destroyed by the Bush administration.' And here he does, finally, quote Wilson directly. Wilson says: 'Naming her this way would have compromised every operation, every relationship, every network with which she had been
associated in her entire career. This is the stuff of Kim Philby and Aldrich Ames.'

Corn has assured us several times that Wilson refused to answer
questions about his wife, refused to confirm or deny that she worked for the CIA, refused to acknowledge whether she is a deep-cover CIA employee. But he is willing to say on the record that 'naming her this way' was an act of treachery? That’s not talking about his wife? That’s not providing confirmation? There is only one way to interpret this: Wilson did indeed talk about his wife, her work as a secret agent, and other matters to Corn (and perhaps others?) on a confidential basis.

If Wilson did tell Corn that his wife was an undercover agent, did he commit a crime? I don’t claim to know. But the charge that someone committed a crime by naming Plame as a covert agent was also made by Corn, apparently for the first time, in this same article. No doubt, the independent prosecutor and the grand jury will sort it out."

It's going to be interesting to see how this all plays out. Who will turn (has turned?) State's evidence first, second, third?

Valerie Plame will be the toughest conviction in this treason conspiracy. I suppose a creative prosecutor, if he establishes that Plame's likeness was information related to the public defense, could successfully prosecute her for transmitting that information to the enemy by agreeing to be photographed for the cover of Vanity Fair. If Fitzgerald were to bring witnesses from the CIA to testify that they never would have given her permission to be photographed for the cover
of a major magazine, and those witnesses could bring evidence that her likeness "might be used", or was used, by the enemy, she could be prosecuted under 18 USC 793 and 794(b) and (c).


Daithí Mac Lochlainn of
Melbourne Indymedia; first alerted me to the Muhammad Naeem Noor Khan leak situation. Daithi is organizing a petition to gather support insisting that the Government investigate this incredible treason.

Justin Raimondo of
>; has written a very interesting report on that leak: Who 'Outed' Mohammad Naeem Noor Khan?:

"Khan, dubbed a 'computer geek' on account of his technical prowess, functioned as a one-man information hub for Al Qaeda, coordinating and forwarding messages between the top leadership and Bin Laden's foot-soldiers worldwide. Once captured, Khan 'flipped' and agreed to cooperate. CIA interrogators had him sending emails to his former confederates all day Sunday and Monday of last week, and getting back encrypted replies. On Monday morning, however, the Times came out with its story, naming Khan and reporting his disclosures as the real basis of the code orange security alerts issued by Homeland Security czar Tom Ridge. The Times cited both Pakistani and U.S. government officials.

It is hard to know what to make of this. Either these unidentified officials had certain knowledge that Bin Laden's New York Times subscription had run out, or else someone deliberately sabotaged a top secret anti-terrorist operation while it was in progress.

As is so often the case with this administration, one is faced with the question: is it incompetence, or is it treason?"

It's treason. Stop saying it's incompetence. Don't be naive. They hijacked the Executive Branch. They're cold, calculated, evil geniuses.

" '[CNN's Wolf] Blitzer then revealed that he had discussed the Khan case with U.S. National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice on background. He reported that she had admitted that the Bush
administration had in fact revealed Khan's name to the press. She said she did not know if Khan was a double agent working for the Pakistani government.'

What a profoundly weird remark...

What I'd like to know, however, is who is working as a double agent inside our own government? Because someone has sure sabotaged the hunt for Bin Laden and his cohorts just as effectively as if they'd been working for the Islamists."

Rice admits they leaked Khan's name. Leaking is their MO. By admitting the leak, she admitted treason under 18 USC 794 (and 793).

Too bad for Condi et als that the information they leaked was related to the public defense and might be useful to the enemy. In this case, "might have" isn't even an issue -- it was useful to the enemy. And it's important to highlight the fact that 18 USC 794 doesn't require the information to be in the form of a covert operative, or anything specific, as is required by the IIPA. It only requires "information" be


There are some very strong indications.

Roger Payne's Blog; of August 5th, 2005, discusses the Khan leak and mentions a very interesting quote by Joe Klein writing for Time Magazine:

Joe Klein reported ; in Time Magazine, June 26, 2004 that Plame 'may have been active in a sting operation involving the trafficking of WMD components.'

A WMD sting? Really? Now, that's interesting."

This ties in with Mark Shapiro's report for Mother Jones; concerning Asher Karni's arrest and coming prosecution for trafficking in WMD components. (Read that article before continuing here.)

From Shapiro's report:

"But in March, anonymous law enforcement officials complained to the Los Angeles Times that the State Department--afraid of offending Pakistan, its partner in the war on terror--had blocked agents from the Commerce and Homeland Security departments from pursuing those leads and going to Pakistan to interview Khan and others."

Valerie Plame, Able Danger, John O'Neil, Sibel Edmonds. The Bush Administration has consistently stopped our intelligence departments from doing their job.

MOTIVE? Treason.

Shapiro reports that anonymous law enforcement officials complained to the LA Times that the State Department blocked them from investigating leads. But they weren't able to stop the intelligence this time.

More from Shapiro's report:

"Ultimately, Karni was tripped up not by the system, but by an odd bit of serendipity: a mysterious individual who, starting in the summer of 2003, guided investigators along Karni's labyrinthine trail. The government's complaint against Karni is peppered with references to the
'anonymous source in South Africa' who clued them in to the 'possible diversion of U.S. origin equipment'."

Wayne Madsen<; offered the following commentary for; in an extensive report about the Asher Karni situation:

"It is no coincidence that FBI translator-turned-whistleblower Sibel Edmonds uncovered nuclear material and narcotics trafficking involving Turkish intermediaries with ties to Israel at the same time Brewster Jennings and the CIA's Counter Proliferation Division was hot on the trail of nuclear proliferations tied to the Israeli government of Ariel Sharon and the A. Q. Khan network of Pakistan.

An arrest in early 2004 points to the links between Israeli agents and Islamist groups bent on producing weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear weapons. According to intelligence sources, this was a network that was a major focus of Edmonds' and Valerie Plame Wilson's

Karni's e-mail traffic to and from Khan was being intercepted by a covert agent in South Africa and being forwarded to U.S. authorities. It is not known whether the covert agent was a Brewster Jennings' asset but it would not be surprising considering Karni was an important link in the A. Q. Khan nuclear smuggling network...

According to FBI insiders, wiretaps of phone calls in the Giza-Bilmen-Karni smuggling ring yielded the name Douglas Feith, the Undersecretary of Defense for Plans and Policy and one of Donald Rumsfeld's chief advisers, and Turkish MIT intelligence members of the Turkish American Council."

It will be interesting to see who decides to cooperate with Patrick Fitzgerald as heads begin to roll and testimony is traded for immunity.

By Citizen Spook