THE PLAME AFFAIR: DAMAGE CONTROL ROUNDUP….I don’t know whether to be surprised at conservative reaction to the Plame affair or not. They’ve definitely circled the wagons, and their main lines of defense seem to be these:

All in all, this is a pretty disappointing performance from people who claim to take national security seriously.

The bottom line remains pretty much the same: A couple of top Bush administration officials blabbed about a clandestine CIA operative to the press in order to try to discredit her husband, and now they’re covering it up. Either you think that’s OK or you don’t. I don’t.

POSTSCRIPT: So what remains? Two main things: understanding Plame’s real role at the CIA, and figuring out who the two leakers were.

Based on some emails I’ve gotten, I suspect that Plame was a pretty serious undercover operator, although perhaps some years in the past. And there are too many people who know the names of the leakers for that to stay secret very much longer.

It might be a couple of days or a couple of weeks, but both of these questions are going to be answered. When they are, the Bush loyalists peddling the excuses above are going to have to put up or shut up.

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