''Before this whole affair, no one would ever have thought of her as an undercover agent,'' said David Tillotson, a next-door neighbor for seven years who got to know the Wilsons well over back-fence chats, shared dinners and play dates for their grandchildren with the Wilsons' children, Trevor and Samantha.
''She wasn't mysterious,'' Mr. Tillotson said. ''She was sort of a working soccer mom.''
He recalled his incredulity on July 14, 2003, when his wife, Victoria, spotted in The Washington Post, in a syndicated column by Robert Novak, a line identifying their neighbor by her maiden name and calling her an ''agency operative.'' Ms. Tillotson kept calling out: ''This can't be! This can't be!''
The Wilsons' neighbor on the other side, Christopher Wolf, was similarly aghast. As he sat on his deck staring at the Novak column, Mr. Wilson came out his back door.
''I said: 'This is amazing! I had no idea,''' Mr. Wolf recalled. ''He sort of motioned to me to keep my voice down.''
“The misinformation being spread in the media about the Plame affair is alarming and damaging to the long-term security interests of the United States. Republicans' talking points are trying to savage Joe Wilson and, by implication, his wife, Valerie Plame, as liars. That is the truly big lie….
Plame was a classmate of mine from the day she started with the CIA. I entered on duty at the CIA in September 1985. All of my classmates were undercover -- in other words, we told our family and friends that we were working for other overt U.S. government agencies….
Yet, until Novak betrayed her, she was still undercover and the company that was her front was still a secret to the world. When Novak outed her he also compromised her company and every individual overseas who had been in contact with that company and with her….
The Republicans insist on the lie that Plame got her husband the job. She did not. She was not a division director; instead she was the equivalent of an Army major. Yes, she recommended her husband to do the job that needed to be done, but the decision to send Wilson on this mission was made by her bosses.
At the end of the day, Wilson was right. There were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. It was the Bush administration that pushed that lie, and because of that lie Americans are dying. Shame on those who continue to slander Joe Wilson while giving Bush and his pack of liars a pass. That's the true outrage."
"A classified State Department memorandum central to a federal leak investigation contained information about CIA officer Valerie Plame in a paragraph marked '(S)' for secret, a clear indication that any Bush administration official who read it should have been aware the information was classified, according to current and former government officials.
Plame -- who is referred to by her married name, Valerie Wilson, in the memo -- is mentioned in the second paragraph of the three-page document, which was written on June 10, 2003, by an analyst in the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR), according to a source who described the memo to The Washington Post.
The paragraph identifying her as the wife of former ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV was clearly marked to show that it contained classified material at the 'secret' level, two sources said. The CIA classifies as 'secret' the names of officers whose identities are covert, according to former senior agency officials."
Speaking under strict confidentiality, intelligence officials revealed heretofore unreported elements of Plame's work. Their accounts suggest that Plame's outing was more serious than has previously been reported and carries grave implications for U.S. national security and its ability to monitor Iran's burgeoning nuclear program.
The administration officials who were responsible for this breach lied under oath and obstructed justice in the case.
Imagine that one day you wake up to the incessent ping of your beeper. It is still dark outside your window, and you slide out of bed, pad quietly down the hallway and try not to wake up the wife and kids, as you slip into your home office and place a call on a secure phone. You are told that your cover has been blown, that your family may be at risk. You have to make instant decisions for your own safety, that of your family, and of every asset you have in the field - and to do that, you have to prioritize which assets are more valuable and which you can afford to lose, if necessary. You have to decide then and there which of the people you cultivated, the ones you promised safety in exchange for information and cooperation, which of them may have to die because you may not have time to save them all.
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