The Tale of Joe Wilson
Stephen Hayes, writing in the Weekly Standard, breaks down the Valerie Plame kerfuffle into digestible pieces. In fact, they're so straightforward... even Maureen Dowd should be able to understand them. Note that I said should, not will.
|...ON JULY 22, 2005, the New York Times published a lengthy, front-page article detailing the work of two senior Bush administration officials, Karl Rove and Scooter Libby, on the Niger-uranium story. A seemingly exhaustive timeline ran alongside the piece. In 19 bullet points, the Times provided its readers in considerable detail with what it regarded as the highlights of the story. The timeline traces events from the initial request for more information on the alleged Iraqi inquiries in Africa to Joseph Wilson's trip to Niger; from the now-famous "16 words" in President Bush's 2003 State of the Union to the details of White House telephone logs; from Bush administration claims that Karl Rove was not involved in the leak to the naming of special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald, and on from there to the dates that White House officials testified before the grand jury.|
As I say, seemingly exhaustive. But there is one curious omission: July 7, 2004. On that date, the bipartisan Senate Select Intelligence Committee released a 511-page report on the intelligence that served as the foundation for the Bush administration's case for war in Iraq. The  Senate report includes a 48-page section on Wilson that demonstrates, in painstaking detail, that virtually everything Joseph Wilson said publicly about his trip, from its origins to his conclusions, was false.
...It is certainly the case that the media narrative is much more sensational than the Senate report... But sometimes the boring stories have an additional virtue. They're true.
Weekly Standard: The Tale of Joe Wilson