Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Reason 58,723 Roves security clearance should be revoked

Amid the brou ha ha swirling about the possibility of Karl Rove losing his security clearance due to his involvement in the Plame outing, there is one aspect which has not been discussed that we should find particularly troubling.

The reason this security clearance business is an issue is because Mr. Rove used classified information in an attack against a perceived political enemy. The past examples of Mr. Roves political dirty tricks are legendary but to use classified information to smear an enemy represents a new, and dangerous low. The Plame outing was a shot across the bow of anyone who would dare to speak the truth when there were secrets that could be used against them.

Once Mr. Roves role in the Plame outing was known, by not immediately revoking his security clearance, this president is condoning this misuse of classified information. Furthermore by keeping Mr. Rove on the payroll with that clearance the implied threat is there that this abuse of power may happen again. With the wheels coming off this administration, amid renewed focus on the administrations misuse of intelligence leading into the Iraq war, the fact that Mr. Rove retains a security clearance at the highest level of power in the administration must certainly have a chilling effect on many who witnessed the events behind the scenes as they transpired. Who wishes to be perceived now as an enemy to the administration if they have any vested interest in any classified secret that may be used by Karl Rove? Is there any doubt that Mr. Rove, given the chance would not be party to ruining another family, smearing another political opponent, or besmirching the character of the next whistle blower who tells their tale? His track record is proven, and President Bush approves of it.

So besides the obvious problem of having someone who can't be trusted with classified information because of the secrets they can't keep, we are faced with the problem of the president approving of classified leaking to damage political opponents. I believe if president Bush really were interested in getting to the bottom of a whole raft of issues he claims to care so much about, he would remove the clearance of Mr. Rove and publicly assure anyone who may come forward to testify in these matters that they will not be subject to the treatment given Mr. Wilson. Of course we can not really believe president Bush is interested in proceeding honestly with the American people in this regard anyway, so lets not hold our breath waiting for him to act properly in this regard.

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