George W. Bush seems to be placing personal loyalties and political loyalties over his Presidential obligations and image. Bush promised the American people publicly repeatedly that he would fire anyone responsible at the White House who was involved in revealing the identity of the CIA operative married to former Ambassador Wilson.
This illegal outing of a secret agent is extremely serious. It demonstrates that some White House operatives found it acceptable to break the law and endanger American national security for political advantage.
Wilson had served as an Ambassador to Iraq. He had faced down Saddam Hussein on behalf of the American government. Wilson understood both the power and limits of Iraq 's threat to peace under Saddam Hussein. He was certainly no friend or supporter of the Iraqi dictator.
He was selected by the Bush Administration to investigate the rumors that Iraq had tried to buy "yellowcake uranium " in the African nation of Niger. Wilson found the reports to be untrue. He reported these facts to the Bush Administration. The Bush Administration continued to spread the false rumors at every level seemingly to push the nation into war.
When Wilson acted to reveal the truth, his reputation was smeared. As part of this smear campaign, Karl Rove and other highly placed White House operatives attached to Vice President Cheney revealed that Wilson 's wife was a CIA covert agent. Her contacts were blown and their lives were placed at risk. Her effectiveness was destroyed. Her identity was revealed by columnist Robert Novak who received the information from Karl Rove.
Karl Rove is the long-time chief political adviser to George W. Bush. Rove seems to never act outside the wishes of Bush on political issues and tactics. The Bush White House has long denied that Bush was involved in this scandal. It is now clear that these denials were untrue!
Bush seems unwilling to keep his earlier promises to fire those responsible for outing the CIA agent wife of Ambassador Wilson. Recently, he has started adding new obstacles to keeping his word. He has started saying he would fire those responsible "IF THEY ARE CONVICTED OF A CRIME. " Bush added these qualifying statements seemingly to protect his closest political aide. Was Rove acting at the direction of Bush or Cheney?
Rove is so powerful that his position may prevent him from being prosecuted by anyone working for the Bush Justice Department. It is widely rumored that Rove masterminds most important appointments of top government officials and judges for the Bush Administration. Are these same government officials to be trusted in handling his possible prosecution?
Clearly, public hearings in Congress are called for having equal representation and co-Chairpersons from both the Republican and Democratic Parties. Additionally, it is time to bring back the Special Independent Prosecutor. The scope of both enquiries should be very broad. Rove role in outing the CIA agent seems to be part of a much bigger picture. All the tactics used to push the nation into war in Iraq using false information should be explored. Using government positions for partisan Republican purposes should be explored. Already, it is clear that Rove was not acting alone.
Rove should be fired now unless he was acting under the direct orders of Bush. If so, Bush should publicly state that Rove was acting under his orders. Bush 's comments remind this writer of Nixon 's efforts to protect his aides in the early stages of the Watergate scandal. Bush should keep his word to the American people and stop trying to protect his political henchmen! Rove should be removed from office so he does not use his power in the White House to thwart an investigation.
Vice President Cheney has already successfully thwarted an effective investigation into his dealing with the oil industry concerning his Energy Taskforce. Cheney has used his office to hide his activities from the American public. We may never fully know if the Iraq War was being planned in part during those meetings. Does this help explain why Cheney 's aides were also involved in outing the CIA agent along with Rove? Does this explain why the Vice President seemed to play a key role is distorting the CIA intelligence reports given to Congress in ways that made war with Iraq likely? Does it explain why Cheney repeatedly tied Iraq to the 9-11 attacks when he knew those ties were largely non-existent?
Abuse of government power for partisan political purposes was at the root of the Watergate scandal. The collapse of the Nixon White House started with a simple burglary which revealed many other serious crimes. I suspect the Rove/Novak Traitorgate scandal is just the tip of the iceberg concerning the Bush Administration.