Hitting the Iceberg: A New Layer of Perfidy in Plamegate

Juan Cole has a succinct and damning round-up of Plamegate and its horrendous implications, in light of the new revelations of Scotter Libby's admission that Dick Cheney ordered him to release classified intelligence information, including Valerie Plame's CIA status, in an attempt to undermine criticism of the Bush Faction's war of aggression in Iraq. Professor Cole very helpfully supplies color pictures and maps to outline the players in this conspiracy – thus even Bush supporters should be able to follow it.

This conspiracy is a sinister business indeed. It ranges far beyond partisan politics to the very heart of our modern darkness: the spread of nightmarish, all-devouring nuclear weapons. Cole's conclusion lays it out straight:

"Robert Novak used the information given him by the White House staff to out Valerie Plame Wilson as an undercover operative. Her career was ruined. All her contacts in the global South were burned, and their lives put in danger. The CIA's careful project combating weapons of mass destruction collapsed.

"The same administration that alleges it should be able to listen to our phone calls at will for national security purposes deliberately undermined US security for petty political purposes, making us all much less safe.

The likelihood is that the crimes of Bush, Cheney, Libby and Rove so far revealed are only the tip of the iceberg.