News and events revolving around the ousting of CIA agent Valerie Plame.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Newsweek: Rove gave Time reporter OK to testify

July 11, 2005

Top presidential adviser Karl Rove was the anonymous source who released a Time reporter from his promise of confidentiality, allowing the journalist to avoid jail, Newsweek says.

In a story published today, Newsweek reveals more details about the celebrated case stemming from the leak of an undercover CIA agent's name in 2003.

The publication of Valerie Plame's name by Chicago Sun-Times syndicated columnist Robert Novak set off an investigation because it's a crime to knowingly identify an undercover CIA official.

Prosecutors trying to find who leaked Plame's name wound up issuing a subpoena to Time reporter Matthew Cooper. He also was working on a story involving Plame in 2003 and wound up facing jail because he wouldn't reveal his secret source.

At the 11th hour last week, Cooper got permission to talk from his source -- identified by Newsweek as Rove.

The magazine said Rove's lawyer confirmed that he gave Cooper the OK to testify before a grand jury.

Newsweek quoted an e-mail from the reporter to his boss that showed Rove had discussed Plame and her husband, Joseph Wilson, a former ambassador, with Cooper.

It was Wilson who went on a CIA-sponsored trip to Africa to learn about Iraq's alleged attempts to buy uranium there.

He subsequently criticized the Bush administration on the Iraq war, a move that critics think led the administration to leak his wife's name as punishment.

Newsweek says that while the e-mail shows that Rove talked to Cooper about the couple, the e-mail doesn't suggest that Rove revealed Plame's name or CIA status.

The Newsweek article quotes Cooper's e-mail as saying, "it was, KR said, Wilson's wife, who apparently works at the agency on wmd [weapons of mass destruction] issues who authorized the trip."

Staff and wire reports


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