Hoist Upon His Own Petard
Former Ambassador Joseph Wilson must be seeking to self-destruct. With his book about to be released tomorrow, he's provided the Neocon Right with all kinds of ammunition to use against him. In fact, he's already done their job for them - by destroying his own credibility.
If actions speak louder than words, Joseph Wilson is screaming that he's not to be trusted. In a blatant attempt to get people to buy his book, for which a movie deal is pending, Wilson declines to name names before the book is officially released.
But in what has increasingly becoming the habit during Mr Bush's presidency, Mr Wilson will not make his claims on television, at a press conference or even in a newspaper column but between the covers of a "must-read" book. His memoir, The Politics of Truth: Inside the Lies that Led to War and Betrayed My Wife's CIA Identity, is published tomorrow.
Tomorrow is going to be a busy day for Mr Wilson, a former ambassador to several African countries and a member of President Bill Clinton's national security council. For while the initial "scoop" will appear in his book, if precedent is any guide the revelation will quickly be devoured by all other media and Mr Wilson will likely be filling the airwaves and broadcasts that day.
Mr Wilson knows the score on this and yesterday he declined to spill the beans. "No, I can't do that," he said. He did, however, "reveal" that the movie project of the book was not so far advanced that actors had been selected. "I will say that if this becomes a movie I am happy with that," he added. "This is a story that people should be told."
I happen to be very sympathetic to his position and the defense of his wife, yet I'm appalled that it appears he's become so blatantly self-serving. Is it so unclear to Ambassador Wilson, a man who is otherwise demonstrably intelligent, that he's voluntarily cutting his own throat in a town notorious for causing such actions?
The Ambassador obviously doesn't know how the publishing business works. I myself have been offered advance copies of books so that I can assist with the promotion of said book by writing about it on this blog. If I can get advance copies, so do the big guys.
Vice President Cheney's chief of staff, Lewis "Scooter" Libby, has been pegged as a possible leaker of the name of CIA operative Valerie Plame to a syndicated columnist, according to a new book by former ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV, Plame's husband. In The Politics of Truth, to be published Friday, Wilson says Libby is "quite possibly the person who exposed my wife's identity," according to The Washington Post, which obtained an early copy.
"The other name that has most often been repeated to me in connection with the inquiry and disclosure into my background and Valerie's is that of Elliott Abrams, who gained infamy in the Iran-Contra scandal," he writes. Abrams is currently a Mideast specialist on the National Security Council.
Another suspect named in Wilson's book: White House chief political adviser Karl Rove. Wilson writes that a "workup" of his background was done by the White House in March 2003, after his public criticism of the administration's Iraq policy. "The workup on me that turned up the information on Valerie was shared with Karl Rove, who then circulated it in administration and neoconservative circles," Wilson writes.
Columnist Robert Novak has said only that "two senior administration officials" were his sources.
So much for hyping the interest factor.
The Bush Defense Squad is already hard at work adding to the discredit of the Ambassador in the public mind:
On Thursday, White House spokesman Scott McClellan said: "Mr. Wilson has publicly stated his primary objective is a political agenda to defeat the president in this election, and I don't intend to do a book review." Last October, McClellan said his conversations with Rove, Libby and Abrams have ruled out their involvement.
I'm SO relieved! How could one EVER doubt the veracity of the Official White House Liar, er, Spokesman! Such testimony should be more than enough for Future Chief (in)Justice Antonin Scalia! Thus, it should be more than enough for you.
Ah, Mr. Wilson! You had the best case to demonstrate that George Warmonger Bush was not just a war criminal, but a domestic one as well. Listening to the wrong people has gotten you into deep trouble one more time. Only this time, you aren't the only one going to suffer the consequences of your actions.