Archive for Monday, October 22, 2007

Congressional briefing: In new book, Valerie Plame goes after Pat Roberts

October 22, 2007

Here are today's headlines from the Kansas congressional delegation:

Sen. Pat Roberts (R)

(USA Today) Ex-CIA spy's account unveiled: Senate Republicans "obscenely twisted" facts and testimony from other CIA officers to falsely accuse Valerie Plame Wilson of sending her husband on a fact-finding trip to Africa that produced strong criticism of the Bush administration's basis for attacking Iraq, Plame Wilson told USA TODAY. It was the first time Plame Wilson has publicly accused Sens. Pat Roberts of Kansas, Orrin Hatch of Utah and Kit Bond of Missouri of misstating her role in the Africa trip in a Senate report widely cited by her critics. The ex-spy, whose cover was effectively blown in a 2003 newspaper column, said the idea to send her husband, Joseph, to Niger to investigate reports that Iraq was buying uranium originated with a CIA colleague and was not part of a "conspiracy" to undermine the administration. ... In 2004, Senate Intelligence Committee members Roberts, Hatch and Bond issued a report stating that Plame Wilson orchestrated her husband's trip. Bond, now the panel's top Republican, repeated the charge this year after reading CIA internal memos.

( GOP Turns Tables on Democrats Over Iraq Probe: In a reversal of roles, Republicans are now complaining that Democrats are stalling on an investigation into intelligence during the buildup to the Iraq War. Senate Intelligence Chairman John D. Rockefeller IV, D-W.Va., made completion of the "Phase II" investigation a top priority after Democrats took control of the committee in January. He said earlier this year that he wanted to finish by summer. But since then, the panel has completed work on only one of the three outstanding reports. ... During the 109th Congress, Democrats centered many of their complaints about Phase II on Republican Pat Roberts of Kansas, who chaired the Intelligence Committee at the time. Asked last week for his reaction to the fact that the investigation wasn't finished, Roberts said, "I don't think very much of it." Under Roberts, the committee released two reports in the Phase II investigation in August 2006 -- one examining erroneous claims of Iraq's ties to al Qaeda and its possession of weapons of mass destruction, and another examining the influence on the administration of the Iraqi National Congress, a dissident group led by Ahmed Chalabi. "Then, it was a cause celÃbre," Roberts said. "A year later, it doesn't matter."

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