Monday, July 25, 2005

Oops there goes another lie about treasongate.

Joe Wilson's lawyer and neighbor indicates, yep, she was undercover until the Republicans blew her cover.

Much more than that, it meant -- along with the danger faced by Valerie's secret sources because of her exposure -- the Wilson family was in danger. There is no shortage of crazies in the world who blame the CIA for their problems. What a tragedy that the Wilson kids cannot play in their yard without their parents having some degree of worry because of this episode.

So I was more than a little surprised that after Valerie was outed, the CIA did not (and never has) posted security at their house. Some neighbors are so jittery that they have called the police reporting people lurking in the bushes. One report produced a squad of police in our house as we arrived home, having entered through a back door inadvertently left unlocked.

Beyond the physical danger, Valerie's privacy is over. My quiet, demure and, as we all now know, secretive neighbor has every aspect of her life exposed and her name plastered on newspapers, magazines and TV literally thousands of times a day.

Two years following the Wilson op-ed and the Novak column, we know that Joe was right -- there was no basis for the administration's claims regarding Iraq's nuclear plans. After Joe's op-ed appeared, White House officials admitted they were wrong to include the claim in the president's State of the Union. The White House has never retracted that retraction. We know that but for Joe's whistle-blowing, the administration would not have admitted that it was wrong to use the nuclear scare as a ground for war.

And we also now know that the only reason Valerie Wilson was mentioned was because, as Time magazine put it, the administration had declared "war on Wilson" for his whistle-blowing. The outing of Valerie seemed intended to send a not-so-subtle message to other potential critics, "Mess with us, and we'll mess with your family."

It's good that they're looking into suing.

I suggest they follow the example of the folks who are suing the Catholic Church in Oregon, and initiate a class action against the Republican party.

There's damages aplenty here, evidently, and the Republicans need to be sent a message that this kind of behavior has consequences in civilized society.

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