How stupid is Scooter Libby?
Stupid enough that his flimsy slimy cover story, of learning a CIA NOC's identity from reporters, just exploded fully in his face.
Ari Fleischer just testified that Libby was telling him all about Valerie Plame's identity days before Libby claims he "heard it" from reporters.
Scooter told him the "Valerie Plame" name (not "Wilson's wife").
Scooter told him she worked for CIA.
Scooter told him Plame worked on weapons nonproliferation -- part of CIA's Operational Directorate. As in -- secret. As is -- "NOC, NOC -- who's there?"
FLEISCHER TELLS JURY THAT LIBBY TOLD HIM ABOUT PLAME
Former White House press secretary Ari Fleischer told a jury today that Vice President Cheney's former chief of staff was the first person to disclose the identity of an undercover CIA officer to him in July 2003. Valerie Plame's identity was revealed in the press days later.
Taking the stand just before noon in the perjury trial of I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Fleischer said that in an unusual lunch in the White House mess, Libby told him that the wife of a prominent war critic worked in the CIA's counterproliferation division. Fleischer, a crucial prosecution witness, said Libby told him at the July 7 lunch that former ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV was sent to Niger not by the vice president, but by Wilson's own wife at the CIA.
So much for Scooter's tall tale about learning about Plame from reporters. So satisfying to have it smashed to smithereens.
Ready for the big house, Scooter?
I'm sure the big house denizens are all ready for you.
My favorite interchange:
Prosecution: Did you have any hesitation about sharing this?
Fleischer: I never would have thought this was classified. Never in my wildest dreams believed this involved, as I've read since, this involved a covert officer.
(NB -- Note that the information Scooter is passing on to Fleischer includes inaccuracies that are specific to the spin of the Vice-President, and are not factual. Wilson's wife did not "send" him to Niger. The Vice-President made a sexist attempt to undermine Wilson's credibility by suggesting that he went at the behest of the little woman, because as we all know, females are inferior beings who can't send anyone anywhere, and if they do, it therefore must be bullshit. This is also why Valerie Plame cannot be a NOC, even though she was. Because women are just secretaries, pencil-pushers, hors-d'oeuvres-passers, babymaker housekeepers, yada yada yada. So very fifties mindset, is it not?)
More via RawStory/MSNBC, here.
Liveblogging trial via firedoglake, here.