Truthdig tips its hat this week to Valerie Plame Wilson, who packed quite a punch Friday during her first public testimony since her 2003 outing as a covert CIA operative. The ex-agent proved she was no slouch when it comes to speaking truth to power with her strong words to Congress about the Bush administration’s role in leaking her identity to journalist Robert Novak in July 2003.

Plame said that Karl Rove was “clearly involved” in the leak, and she called President Bush out for protecting Rove despite Bush’s pledge that he would “immediately dismiss anyone who had anything to do with this.” She calmly and eloquently critiqued the “creeping, insidious politicizing” of American intelligence and warned that this trend would prove to be disastrous for the nation. She also made no bones about her shock and dismay about the betrayal, the damaging domino effect that it had on other agents and their families, and her conviction that her “exposure arose from purely political motives.”

Plame paid a high price for the administration’s shenanigans, which led to fall guy I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby’s conviction last week, but she made her loss the country’s gain by shedding light on some major problems within the intelligence community — and, clearly, within the walls of the White House.

More Plame links:

Click here for a summary about Friday’s hearings.

Click here for a transcript of her opening salvo.

Watch her testimony here.

Check out Robert Scheer’s analysis of the Plame case from 2005.

Listen to an audio tribute to Valerie Plame with Robert Scheer, James Harris and Josh Scheer:

  • Download MP3 Audio File
  • (running time: 19:39 / 18 MB)

    The Brad Blog has obtained a copy of a letter Henry Waxman sent the White House chiding the administration for failing to conduct a swift and thorough examination into the Plame leak and imploring it to do so now.

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