Woodward Still Foggy
Bob Woodward still doesn't get it. CNN.com reports that:
In October [Woodward] was dismissive of the outing of Plame, telling CNN's Larry King that the damage from her exposure was "quite minimal."
Bob appears to think that the government and people are concerned with the personal safety of the spook. This concern mirrors a recent two-episode story in E-Ring, the excellent Benjamin Bratt/Dennis Hopper NBC drama. In that story, a CIA agent's identity was leaked and she was killed as a result.
In the real world, however, there are two concerns:
1. National security: When an agent is compromised, all of her contacts are also compromised. Current agents who are "handling" her contacts can be identified and deported; those contacts can then be mined by foreign governments to see what the CIA knows.
2. Humanistic concerns: When a former foreign resident is identified as a spy, all the people who used to know her fall under suspicion. This can include the gardener, the cook, the night watchman, but also the neighbor she used to have coffee with, the newspaper-stand salesman she bought her papers from, the shoe-shiner who would come by once a week--all of these innocents now fall under suspicion and could be taken in for questioning, detention, and in the worst cases torture, imprisonment, death.
Bob, get a grip.