- The Washington Times - Friday, December 30, 2005

Another leak

The Washington couple at the heart of the CIA leak investigation had their cover blown by their small son as they tried to sneak away on vacation yesterday.

“My daddy’s famous, my mommy’s a secret spy,” declared the 5-year-old of his parents, former diplomat Joseph C. Wilson IV and retired CIA employee Valerie Plame.

Mrs. Plame, who just retired from the agency, has been at the center of a CIA leak scandal that has reached into the White House.

They said they were headed to an undisclosed vacation location with their twins but stopped in Houston for a brief interview inside the airport terminal, Reuters news agency reports.

A special prosecutor has indicted I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby, a top aide to Vice President Dick Cheney, on charges of lying in the investigation and has opened a second grand jury.

Noonan’s predictions

“In the absence of great movements — or the emotional and intellectual commitment great movements require — the 2006 American elections become what they usually are, a referendum on whether or not you like your local congressman,” Peggy Noonan writes at www.OpinionJournal.com.

“The result: a holding action on the part of the electorate. The Democratic Party continues as the dead man walking of American politics. It’s like a movie in which the spirit of a lively person enters the body of a dying person and revives it. They’re hoping Hillary [Rodham Clinton] can bring them alive, or [Virginia Gov.] Mark Warner, and they can jump out of bed and have adventures. The Republicans are not on their deathbed but they are in heavy therapy. What do we believe in? Why do we exist? What is our purpose? Must my life have meaning? Can’t I just enjoy it? The Democrats are worse than we are.

“Patrick Fitzgerald’s work will be seen in retrospect as the great investigation that ended Washington’s long love affair with investigations. The nonfiction books of the year will be Rick Brookhiser’s ‘What the Founders Would Do’ and Terry Teachout’s biography of Louis Armstrong. Bill Safire, whose traditional end-of-the-year column I’m attempting to ape, should come back to us with a big book. What I’d like to see from him: ‘What I’ve Learned, What I Know.’ …

“Hillary Clinton will soon face the base, seeking to relieve the pressure of growing leftist resentment of her non-antiwar stance. She wins big in New York, but watch her in Hollywood: Will her 2008 fundraising forays be as successful as her husband’s were? Or does big-money Hollywood have Clinton fatigue? And don’t they think Mark Warner reminds them of Warren Beatty, only serious and with a record?”

Popular spying

“This will be remembered as the year in which mass surveillance became normal, even popular,” syndicated columnist James P. Pinkerton writes.

“Revelations about the Bush administration’s domestic eavesdropping rocked the civil liberties establishment, but the country as a whole didn’t seem upset. Instead, the American people, mindful of the possible danger that we face, seem happy enough that Uncle Sam is taking steps to keep up with the challenges created by new technology,” Mr. Pinkerton said.

“Ask yourself: Do you think it’s a bad idea for the feds, as U.S. News & World Report mentioned, to monitor Islamic sites inside the United States for any possible suspicious radiation leaks? The Council on American-Islamic Relations is up in arms — but are you? If you were to read in the paper that some FBI agent has gotten in trouble over pointing a Geiger counter at a mosque, would you be inclined to give the FBI agent the benefit of the doubt? I thought so.

“Or take another example: Wednesday’s USA Today details government plans to deploy security agents at major airports to engage in ‘behavioral screening.’ That is, agents chat up passengers, looking for anything suspicious. It’s a tactic that’s worked in Israel for years, and it’s being introduced here, starting with Boston’s Logan Airport. That airport, some might recall, was the departure point for two of the doomed flights on 9/11.

“But of course, the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts has already sued to oppose any such program. Who do you think the overwhelming majority of Americans want to see prevail on this question? Yes, civil liberties matter, but the majority has rights, too, and if the majority puts a premium on the nation’s safety, that view deserves respect.”

Justice Sunday III

Sen. Rick Santorum, Pennsylvania Republican, will be a speaker on the simulcast television program “Justice Sunday III.”

The organizers of the Justice Sunday programs aim to rally the faithful to rein in what they view as activist judges who usurp the rights of Congress and the people in order to impose a leftist moral vision on the nation.

The program is set for Jan. 8 at Greater Exodus Baptist Church in Philadelphia, and will be broadcast live in churches across the nation in addition to being carried on hundreds of radio stations, via satellite and webcast on www.justicesunday.com. It will come on the eve of Senate hearings for Supreme Court nominee Judge Samuel A. Alito Jr.

“Senator Santorum is a defender of our religious liberties and has consistently fought for public policy upholding the institutions of marriage and family,” said Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council.

Mr. Santorum will join James Dobson, the Rev. Jerry Falwell, Bishop Wellington Boone, the Rev. Herbert Lusk, Mr. Perkins and other speakers for Justice Sunday III.

Bill’s request

Former President Bill Clinton sent out an e-mail appeal Wednesday for contributions to his wife’s Senate re-election campaign.

But Mr. Clinton’s e-mail “differs sharply from the campaign pitch he made earlier this year: It makes no mention of GOP bogeymen putting Hillary at the top of their hit list,” the New York Post reports.

Mr. Clinton instead moved to shore up Hillary Rodham Clinton’s Democratic bona fides, reporter Ian Bishop said.

Mr. Clinton said: “Whether speaking out on the Senate floor about why this latest congressional budget is so wrong for our country … or traveling to New Orleans to meet with families still waiting for homes — and hope — Hillary is a beacon of strength, intelligence, and generosity of spirit.”

Mr. Clinton added: “And I know something else: Hillary is a fighter.”

The e-mail, sent by the Friends of Hillary campaign committee, asks for a donation to “show the strength of our campaign” before the quarterly fundraising deadline tomorrow.

Greg Pierce can be reached at 202/636-3285 or gpierce@washingtontimes.com.

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