Friday, July 22, 2005

"A true patriot would shut up"

David Corn has the must read of the day. He posts the transcript of retired CIA case officer and former prosecutor, James Marcinkowski's testimony at an unofficial Senate Democratic Policy Council hearing on the Plame leak. The Dems were forced to conduct the hearing in this manner because the GOP controlled Senate refuses to hold official hearings.

Marcinkowski likens the outing to a local police chief announcing the list of his undercover drug officers. Read the whole thing, but here's the money quotes.
And so the real issues before this Congress and this country today is not partisan politics, not even the loss of secrets. The secrets of Valerie Plame's cover are long gone. What has suffered perhaps irreversible damage is the credibility of our case officers when they try to convince our overseas contact that their safety is of primary importance to us. How are our case officers supposed to build and maintain that confidence when their own government cannot even guarantee the personal protection of the home team? While the loss of secrets in the world of espionage may be damaging, the stealing of the credibility of our CIA officers is unforgivable....

...There is a very serious message here. Before you shine up your American flag lapel pin and affix your patriotism to your sleeve, think about what the impact your actions will have on the security of the American people. Think about whether your partisan obfuscation is creating confidence in the United States in general and the CIA in particular. If not, a true patriot would shut up.

Those who take pride in their political ability to divert the issue from the fundamental truth ought to be prepared to take their share of the responsibility for the continuing damage done to our national security.
As Corn notes this should be required reading for every White House apologist. Among that number are some whom I love and respect and call friends, and I know they are well-meaning but this is too serious to put aside for the sake of amity.

So especially to them I say, you can either hold on to partisan loyalty and ignore or excuse treason on legal technicalities to save this President or you can uphold the present and future good of our country, and ask for accountability. You can't do both.
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