The White House now completely abandons any pretense of behaving like responsible government officials. There’s been lots of rhetoric about “holding ourselves to the highest level of ethics.” When it comes time to test that, they stonewall and pretend like it didn’t happen. I love this headline on CNN – “Administration vows cooperation in probe of intelligence leak”. OK. that’s reasonable, right? Then the first paragraph is a perfect Bush administration of doing the opposite of what they say.
The White House will cooperate with the Justice Department in its initial inquiry into who leaked the classified identity of a CIA operative, but will not launch an internal probe and will not ask for an independent investigation, a spokesman said Monday.
“The president believes if someone leaked classified information, particularly of this nature, that it is a serious matter and it should be looked into and pursued to the fullest extent possible,” said White House spokesman Scott McClellan.
The President believes this is serious and should be looked into. However, the White House refuses to look into it and will instead only answer the questions DOJ poses. Right. Am I the only one who notices a glaring contradictory message between “it should be looked into and pursued to the fullest extent possible” and ” will not launch an internal probe and will not ask for an independent investigation”? Not launching an investigation is the fullest extent possible? Fuller than launching it? This is downright insane.
I’ve been watching Scott McLellan twist in the wind for a while on CSPAN. He is just not the bald (no pun intended) liar that Ari Fleischer was. When asked by reporters “why not ask the dozen people that could have leaked it who did it?” he said “We can’t go down the White House directory and look at everyone.” Bullshit! In the first place, the whole White House doesn’t have access to lists of CIA field agents. Even if they did, of course you could talk to every White House employee. McLellan dismissed the story because it was based on an anonymous source, which is nicely circular logic. A story about how the White House retaliates against people who speak on the record is dismissed because it is anoymously sourced. It is time for Washington DC to go for the “I am Spartacus” play. Everyone needs to spill it simultaneously, so that there are too many people to retaliate against individually.