State Memo on Plame Stamped “Secret”
Walter Pincus and Jim VandeHei have dug around and discovered that the State Department memo mentioning Valerie Plame (Wilson) as a CIA operative is itself stamped “Secret” and makes it clear she is undercover and that the cover should not be blown.
The memo was on Air Force One during a trip to Africa and may be the way that Karl Rove and Scooter Libby found out about Plame. That it says “Secret” on it singlehandedly gets rid of all kinds of false assertions of the Republican noise machine, that Plame’s identity as an undercover operative was widely known, etc.
Rove and Libby later outed Plame to the press, hoping to discredit Wilson by doing so.
On the other hand, that Pincus and VandeHei have to go to so much trouble to prove that the identity of a CIA operative working on Weapons of Mass Destruction was secret and shouldn’t have been blown by Rove is a tribute of sorts to Rove the master of spin and propaganda.