Friday :: Jul 23, 2004

More White House Staff Knew For Months About Berger Investigation


by Steve

Well, the White House story about Sand Bergerís mishandling of National Archive documents keeps changing. It now turns out that more Bush Administration officials have known for months about the investigation of Berger, including staff within Condi Riceís NSC as well as the White House Counselís office of Alberto Gonzalez than were originally admitted by the Administration several days ago.

For the second day in a row, administration officials said yesterday that more of President Bush's aides knew about an investigation of former Clinton national security adviser Samuel R. "Sandy" Berger than the White House originally acknowledged.

The senior official said that a few NSC staff members who also report to the counsel's office had known about the inquiry.

And one of the administration sources for this story has already gotten it wrong about when former Clinton advisor Bruce Lindsay was told about Bergerís mishandling of documents.

Also yesterday, Bruce R. Lindsey, who serves as former president Bill Clinton's liaison to the Archives, said he was not alerted to concerns about missing documents until two days after Berger's Oct. 2 visit. Berger was notified that day, and he searched his office for the missing papers. A government source claiming knowledge of the investigation said Archives officials alerted Lindsey to concerns after a visit by Berger in September. Lindsey said yesterday this was not the case.

Let's recap. Berger has been under investigation since last year, but still has not interviewed by the FBI, and is not a target of the investigation. Staff in the Counselís Office staff and staff in Condi Riceís National Security Council (read Stephen Hadley) have known about the investigation for months, but it was suddenly leaked to the AP by presumably Justice (or possibly now NSC) days before the release of the 9/11 Commission report. And has it been shown yet that Berger took copies and originals of documents and destroyed them? No. Is the information in question already known by Kerry and others inside the Beltway, thereby negating the need for Berger to "steal" it for the Kerry campaign? Yes.

So while nutcase Republicans like Tom DeLay whine that this is a serious national security crisis, while not seeing the exposing of a CIA agent for political gain to also be a serious national security crisis, letís please ignore any more ranting from our troll brethren about this matter. It was a political exploitation of Sandy Bergerís sloppiness and stupidity, nothing more.

In the words of the Bush Administration, "move on, nothing to see here."

Steve :: 8:51 AM :: Comments (12) :: Digg It!