Behind the scenes, the single most important reason for the Valerie Plame/Joe Wilson farce is that CIA Director Porter Goss has finally started to clean house at Langley. Goss's long-overdue shake-up is clearly backed by the White House, the top levels of the Pentagon and State Department, and the new National Director of Intelligence, John Negroponte.
Judging by Director Goss's remarks at his Senate confirmation hearings, those whose jobs are most in danger include the CIA "experts" in WMD proliferation – Valerie Plame's outfit – who completely failed to anticipate the Indian and Pakistani nukes, and just couldn't figure out what was going on with Iraqi WMDs. Valerie Plame's bosses are facing the axe for decades of failures.
And it's about time, because Iran is within sight of its first nukes. You don't suppose that has anything to do with the Plame/Wilson publicity stunt, do you?
Clearly the CIA managers who failed the United States so terribly on 9/11 should have been fired four years ago. Others now worried about their careers include officials who have long resisted the onerous task of building a topnotch human intelligence capability in the most dangerous parts of the world.
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Update: Confederate Yankee points out one of the most repeated lies in the Plame Game.