From: Duluth, Minnesota, U.S. (West end of Lake Superior)
Member Rating: 7.2
Message 271 of 271 (595515)
12-09-2010 2:48 AM
Don't care who the leaker(s) were - What about Robert Novak?
Kind of a side topic to the Wikileaks topic. That topic reminded me of the Valerie Plame situation, which lead me to track down this topic.
Regardless of who the leaker(s) were, what was Robert Novak's responsibilities in this situation?
In 2003, he identified Valerie Plame as a CIA "operative" in his column. In doing so, he inadvertently disclosed the organizational name of the company she used as cover, Brewster Jennings & Associates, the other operatives who worked for Brewster Jennings, and the informants who met with them. Although it is illegal for anyone, government official or otherwise, to knowingly distribute classified information (under US Code, Title 18, Section 793, Paragraph e), Novak was never charged with this crime because there was no evidence that Novak knew that Ms. Plame was a covert agent. Novak reported the information was provided to him by two "senior administration officials". These were eventually revealed to be Richard Armitage, who e-mailed him using the pseudonym "Wildford", with Novak assuming Karl Rove's comments as confirmation.
Should Novak have been more restrained about publishing the Valerie Plame information? Should he not have been concerned about the possibility that Plame was a covert agent?
Be it legal or illegal, is there a journalist responsibility to be more careful in situations like this?
I know, lots of questions. I offhand don't have any answers.