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Is it possible the INR memo is a red herring?

Well, we’ve all been having a lot of fun talking about the INR memo on Plame. But I’m beginning to suspect–strongly–that it’s one giant red herring, or at least only one of several central clues to this investigation. There are some concrete reasons to suspect it’s not the only crucial document in this investigation. The memo doesn’t mention Plame as Plame (leaving open the question of who directed Novak to use Plame instead of Wilson). From the AP yesterday, we learned the INR memo supported Wilson’s take on the Niger documents, which seems unlikely to be the source of Novak’s column given how negative Novak’s column was. And there seem to be an overabundence of leaks about the document, which makes me wonder if someone isn’t trying to distract attention away from something else.

But the real reason I think the INR memo is not the key piece of evidence here is that Novak revealed other classified information in his original column, information that may not have been in the INR memo–but may have been in a different report on Wilson’s trip.

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