Columnist Robert Novak and former Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage can’t agree on what Armitage’s intentions were when he told Novak about Valerie Plame’s employment by the CIA. Novak claims it was a deliberate leak; Armitage says it was much more casual.
Columnist Robert D. Novak, who first revealed Valerie Plame’s employment by the CIA and touched off a lengthy federal leak investigation, is accusing his primary source of misrepresenting their conversation to make the source’s role in the disclosure seem more casual than it was.
In an unusual column that appears today, Novak says his initial source, former deputy secretary of state Richard L. Armitage, was more sure of Plame’s ties to the CIA than the source has indicated. Novak adds that Armitage linked her directly to her husband’s CIA-sponsored trip to Niger and suggested the disclosure would be a good item for Novak’s column.
This differs from Armitage’s assertions last week that his disclosure was made in an offhand manner and that he did not know why Plame’s husband was sent to Niger.