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Author Topic: Emails Will Reveal that Rove Outed CIA Operative Valerie Plame
kenmeer livermaile
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"The person, who works in the legal profession and spoke only on condition of anonymity because of grand jury secrecy, told The Associated Press that Rove testified last year that he remembers specifically being told by columnist Robert Novak that Valerie Plame, the wife of a harsh
Iraq war critic, worked for the CIA."


"...The person, who works in the legal profession and spoke only on condition of anonymity because of grand jury secrecy..."

Ain't irony delicious? A fractal gradation of trials about triala about trials about anonymous leaks and secret sources.

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Everard
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Warsaw-
Doesn't really mean anything. Wilson isn't the one pursuing the investigation. THe CIA is, and they think one of their covert operatives was outed. Maybe Wilson meant she wasn't a clandestine operative because she wasn't currently on a mission, or wasn't in deep cover somewhere. Who knows what he meant. But the CIA certainly thinks the law was broken, since they demanded the investigation.

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David Ricardo
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It is pretty easy to see why Wilson is parsing his words that way when you read the larger context of the interview:

http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0507/14/wbr.01.html

quote:
BLITZER: But the other argument that's been made against you is that you've sought to capitalize on this extravaganza, having that photo shoot with your wife, who was a clandestine officer of the CIA, and that you've tried to enrich yourself writing this book and all of that.

What do you make of those accusations, which are serious accusations, as you know, that have been leveled against you.

WILSON: My wife was not a clandestine officer the day that Bob Novak blew her identity.
BLITZER: But she hadn't been a clandestine officer for some time before that?

WILSON: That's not anything that I can talk about. And, indeed, I'll go back to what I said earlier, the CIA believed that a possible crime had been committed, and that's why they referred it to the Justice Department.

She was not a clandestine officer at the time that that article in Vanity Fair appeared. And I have every right to have the American public know who I am and not to have myself defined by those who would write the sorts of things that are coming out, being spewed out of the mouths of the RNC

Wilson is stating himself in such an awkward fashion precisely because he cannot ever admit or acknowledge that his wife, Valerie Plame, was ever a clandestine operative with the CIA. Because of the classified nature of her clandestine work with the CIA and the security of her intelligence contacts as a CIA clandestine operative, Wilson is being very careful never to admit that she actually was a CIA operative. Therefore, that's why he is being so careful to say only that the CIA believed that there was a crime that was committed (outing of clandestine CIA operative) and was asking FBI to investigate that crime.

To those who are conveniently reading comprehension-challenged, when Wilson says, "My wife was not a clandestine officer the day that Bob Novak blew her identity." -- he is emphasizing that she ceased to be a clandestine CIA officer when Bob Novak outed her as a clandestine CIA officer. And he is being very careful to say it in such a way that he never actually admits or acknowledges that Valerie Plame was a clandestine officer.

He only alludes indirectly to her being a CIA clandestine operative by emphasizing things like "Bob Novak blew her identity" and "CIA believed that a possible crime had been committed."

And of course, his wife was no longer a clandestine CIA officer after Novak outed her status as such, so the article and photos with Vanity Fair made perfect sense since she was already outed in the first place.

[ July 15, 2005, 03:31 PM: Message edited by: David Ricardo ]

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WarrsawPact
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Ah ha! Thanks David.

Now, as to that conversation between Novak and Rove...

[ July 15, 2005, 03:31 PM: Message edited by: WarrsawPact ]

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A. Alzabo
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quote:
Now, as to that conversation between Novak and Rove...

Phew! Good thing Rove just happened to have the info handy to help Novak out.

At any rate, I don't think the charge against any of the sources (and clearly it's not just Rove) will be treason, since the charge doesn't fit.

Probably espionage and mishandling sensitive information.

[ July 15, 2005, 03:38 PM: Message edited by: A. Alzabo ]

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Pete at Home
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I'm still trying to get my mind around the concept of someone passing info like ID of secret CIA agents to a political publicist. Good hell. Do our presidents really trust this level of information to their Carl Roves and James Carvilles? Everyone knows that Caroveelles are born and bred to be political spin machines. You input information, and it outputs a way to use the info to win an election or gain some other micropolitical advantage. Please tell me we're not feeding classified national security info into these machines.
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A. Alzabo
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quote:
Please tell me we're not feeding classified national security info into these machines.
You didn't know you'd elected Clinton II, did you Pete?

Misplaced secret information, quibbling over legalisms despite clear evidence of wrongdoing...

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Pete at Home
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That's like mistaking your fax machine for a shredder.
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Pete at Home
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AA, I've said it before and I'll say it again -- if the 22nd amendment was repealed, I'd probably join my wife this time and vote for Bill Clinton. But it still doesn't make me regret chosing W over Kerry.

And frankly I don't see any better alternatives.

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javelin
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quote:
Originally posted by Pete at Home:
I'm still trying to get my mind around the concept of someone passing info like ID of secret CIA agents to a political publicist. Good hell. Do our presidents really trust this level of information to their Carl Roves and James Carvilles? Everyone knows that Caroveelles are born and bred to be political spin machines. You input information, and it outputs a way to use the info to win an election or gain some other micropolitical advantage. Please tell me we're not feeding classified national security info into these machines.

Well, if Rove is to be believed, he didn't have that classified information.
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A. Alzabo
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quote:
And frankly I don't see any better alternatives.
That's the rub, ain't it!
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kenmeer livermaile
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"o those who are conveniently reading comprehension-challenged, when Wilson says, "My wife was not a clandestine officer the day that Bob Novak blew her identity." -- he is emphasizing that she ceased to be a clandestine CIA officer when Bob Novak outed her as a clandestine CIA officer. And he is being very careful to say it in such a way that he never actually admits or acknowledges that Valerie Plame was a clandestine officer."

I was waiting for someone to grasp that nuance. This IS intelligence work, not politics... except that someone mixed the two in public view.

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Digger
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"he is emphasizing that she ceased to be a clandestine CIA officer when Bob Novak outed her as a clandestine CIA officer"

You've got more nuance on the brain than I do. If he meant it the way you've descibed, the correct wording would have been, "My wife ceased being a clandestine CIA operative the day...". When he says "was not" in place of "ceased", the meaning is that she had ceased having clandestine status at some point before the article was published.

Edited to add: The word "stopped" could be used in place of "ceased" also without altering the meaning.

[ July 15, 2005, 05:21 PM: Message edited by: Digger ]

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javelin
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That'd be too clear, Digger - he was trying to be evasive on the subject - they have to "disavow" her, right? So, that's what he was doing? [Confused] Wait, is her husband an undercover operative in the employ of the CIA? Oh few, guess not - 'cause if he was, I just outed him...

[ July 15, 2005, 05:24 PM: Message edited by: javelin ]

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Digger
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"...he was trying to be evasive on the subject..."

We're reading minds now? Ok, have it your way. I'm sticking with the text, though. If I'm wrong, I expect there will be clarification soon. Lacking any, I think the written word should stand.

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Daruma28
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Question for the "Rove is Guilty Without a Doubt" crowd:

Why is NYT's Judith Miller still in jail? What source is she protecting? It surely is not Rove....

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Digger
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"It surely is not Rove.... "

I'll stretch that and speculate that it isn't anyone who could be called a Republican. She's obviously protecting someone who could still be harmed by the information getting out, and pretty much everyone of significance within the White House staff has already talked with the prosecutors and/or grand jury as far as I can tell.

[ July 15, 2005, 05:33 PM: Message edited by: Digger ]

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Pete at Home
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quote:
Originally posted by javelin:
Well, if Rove is to be believed, he didn't have that classified information.

As a principle, I try very hard not to believe the Roves and Carvilles of this world, any more than I believe that Coke really does add life, or that having the right kind of car will make me happier and more masculine.

On the other hand, I really can't see why anyone would give a Rove info like names of top secret operators. I think the spinner's getting spun here.

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A. Alzabo
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quote:
Question for the "Rove is Guilty Without a Doubt" crowd:

Why is NYT's Judith Miller still in jail? What source is she protecting? It surely is not Rove....

More than one source mishandled data?
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David Ricardo
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Digger, be careful what you wish for. Most likely, Judith Miller is protecting Scooter Libby. In fact, it is very likely that Fitzgerald is tightening the screws on Rove and Miller in order to find out the other White House leaker(s).

Remember that Novak's column cited "two senior administration officials" as his sources. Rove is one of them. Most likely, Scooter Libby is the other, and Fitzgerald is jailing Miller until she coughs him up.

[ July 15, 2005, 05:50 PM: Message edited by: David Ricardo ]

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A. Alzabo
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quote:
Remember that Novak's column cited "two senior administration officials" as his sources. Rove is one of them. Most likely, Scooter Libby is the other, and Fitzgerald is jailing Miller until she coughs him up.

Although Libby supposedly signed a waiver that released Miller a long time ago...

But I agree with your assessment.

[ July 15, 2005, 06:21 PM: Message edited by: A. Alzabo ]

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Digger
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"Digger, be careful what you wish for."

Oh, I'm not wishing for anything. Just playing the speculation game. Someone outside the White House and likely a Democrat is what makes sense to me. I could be (and by being on Ornery, by definition, am) wrong.

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Everard
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Hrm. I'm a little bothered by the senate voting to leave rove's security clearance intact, despite an admission by his lawyer that rove spoke to novak about plume. If he's cleared by the investigation, then restore the security clearance. But it seems this is a situation where discretion is the better part of valor.
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Digger
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"I'm a little bothered by the senate voting to leave rove's security clearance intact..."

I think there were a few Senators who would have lost their clearances had they been held to the same standard they are trying to hold Rove to. I'm not saying Rove is the innocent white lamb, but there's a lot of black sheep around Washington.

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Daruma28
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I've largely stayed out of this whole sorry affair....but I'd really like to know this:

If outing a single CIA agent who was not even undercover is SUCH A CRIME to call people traitors, treasonous, and that they should be fired or have security clearance revoked...or to have the white house press corp berate Scott McClellan for three days straight (even starting the DAY after the London bombings...) - than what about outing an entire CIA operation?

Is that not even WORSE?

Or MORE treasonous?

Did we already forget about the NYT detailed report exposing companies, and actual planes with Tailfin ID numbers and all in their pictures about the planes that the CIA used for transporting captured prisoners? The countless pilots and flight crews and operators endangered needlessly in the NYT's efforts to continually push the Abu Ghraib/Gitmo torture memes?

Where is the outrage about that?

Oh wait...I know.

It doesn't politically hurt Bush or help the Democrats and their panderer's in the press.

Carry on.

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A. Alzabo
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quote:
Where is the outrage about that?

Remember, Daruma, when I told you that was a bad thing? But publishing it wasn't a crime.

Furthermore the Plame leak did blow a "whole CIA operation". One that tried to prevent the development and spread of WMD.

[ July 15, 2005, 06:48 PM: Message edited by: A. Alzabo ]

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Everard
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Daruma-
The only evidence you have she wasn't undercover is wilson's deliberately murky statement. On the other hand, the CIA says she was.

Also, knowingly outting a CIA operative is a federal crime. Outting a CIA agent for political vengeance is even worse.

Exposing a CIA operation is not a federal crime.

Further, have you noticed that no one is calling for a prosection of Novak? It was his article that outted her to the public. But he's protected by the first amendment. He can publish that. He doesn't have security clearance. The same people not demanding he be prosecuted are the same people not demanding the the NYT be prosecuted.

Rove isn't protected. And he outted an operative, possibly in violation of federal law. Can you show me the law that applies to the NYT?

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Pete at Home
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That's irrelevant to Daruma's question, since it's not the job of the press to prosecute crime.
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Daruma28
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I'm not talking about YOU or anyone else here on Ornery really....just the hysterical media going WAAAAYY over the top and haranguing Scott McClellan and publishing "Rove Should Be Fired" articles and editorials ad naseum - like Plame's identity is the most IMPORTANT issue in the country today.

Where is Terry Moran expressing the same kind of outrage at the NYT for outing an entire CIA operation like he did with McClellan?

It's so transparently partisan, it's really laughable.

And look, I don't know how this is all going to play out, and I am not giving Rove the benefit of the doubt...he may very well be guilty. But like the first post in this thread, guys like Ricardo have already convicted him because it suits their partisan agenda rather than a real concern for the truth.

[ July 15, 2005, 06:52 PM: Message edited by: Daruma28 ]

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Daruma28
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quote:
And he outted an operative, possibly in violation of federal law.
This is the effects of the incessant partisan hyping by the media manifesting itself. The investigation is ongoing, yet Ev, you and all your likeminded ABBers have already convicted him of this.

From everything I've read on the topic, that's still very much in question.

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Daruma28
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Here's the WSJ's rundown of the whole affair...can someone point out where they may be wrong?

quote:

The New York Times, the Washington Post and the Associated Press all report that, as the AP puts it, Rove "originally learned about the operative [Plame] from the news media and not government sources, according to a person briefed on the testimony," apparently a lawyer friendly to the White House. According to the Times account, Rove was the second source for Bob Novak's column identifying Plame's role in arranging Wilson's trip to Niger:

Mr. Rove has told investigators that he learned from the columnist the name of the C.I.A. officer, who was referred to by her maiden name, Valerie Plame, and the circumstances in which her husband, former Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV, traveled to Africa to investigate possible uranium sales to Iraq, the person said.

After hearing Mr. Novak's account, the person who has been briefed on the matter said, Mr. Rove told the columnist: "I heard that, too." . . .

On Oct. 1, 2003, Mr. Novak wrote another column in which he described calling two officials who were his sources for the earlier column. The first source, whose identity has not been revealed, provided the outlines of the story and was described by Mr. Novak as "no partisan gunslinger." Mr. Novak wrote that when he called a second official for confirmation, the source said, "Oh, you know about it."

That second source was Mr. Rove, the person briefed on the matter said.

If this account is accurate, then Rove simply confirmed a fact that was already in circulation. He no more "outed" Plame than Wilson did when he peddled his "outing" allegation to various left-wing journalists after Novak's column ran.

Meanwhile, the Washington Times quotes an erstwhile colleague of Plame's who casts further doubt on the Democratic narrative:

A former CIA covert agent who supervised Mrs. Plame early in her career yesterday took issue with her identification as an "undercover agent," saying that she worked for more than five years at the agency's headquarters in Langley and that most of her neighbors and friends knew that she was a CIA employee.

"She made no bones about the fact that she was an agency employee and her husband was a diplomat," Fred Rustmann, a covert agent from 1966 to 1990, told The Washington Times.

"Her neighbors knew this, her friends knew this, his friends knew this. A lot of blame could be put on to central cover staff and the agency because they weren't minding the store here. . . . The agency never changed her cover status."

Mr. Rustmann, who spent 20 of his 24 years in the agency under "nonofficial cover"--also known as a NOC, the same status as the wife of Mr. Wilson--also said that she worked under extremely light cover.

In addition, Mrs. Plame hadn't been out as an NOC since 1997, when she returned from her last assignment, married Mr. Wilson and had twins, USA Today reported yesterday.

In an interview with CNN yesterday, Wilson acknowledged, "My wife was not a clandestine officer the day that Bob Novak blew her identity," though he refused to say anything about her career before that day. As we noted yesterday, though, the source for that USA Today report was none other than Wilson himself, in his book, which apparently no one bothered to read until now.

So Plame has not been undercover since at least 1997 - well beyond the five years to fall within the jurisdiction of the crime of "outing an undercover" agent.
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Everard
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Umm, see the "possibly" there, daruma? No, apparently not.
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Everard
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"Where is Terry Moran expressing the same kind of outrage at the NYT for outing an entire CIA operation like he did with McClellan?"

The job of the press is to tell us what the government is doing, ESPECIALLY the things the government does not want us to know. This is why they have first amendment protections.

The job of government officials with security clearance is to not use that clearance for partisan political gain, at the possible expense of people's lives and at the possible expense of national security.

The two cases aren't even in the same ballpark of similarity.

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Digger
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"deliberately murky statement"

Back again with the mind reading. Oy vey.

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Daruma28
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quote:
Originally posted by Everard:
Umm, see the "possibly" there, daruma? No, apparently not.

I saw it. But you say "he outted" when it may very well be he "outted" no one, since her identity was already well known. Does it not require that to "out" someone, you have to be the first to reveal the secret to the public?
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Everard
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Nope. He's not legally allowed to identify a CIA operative, even if someone says to him "I know that Wilson's wife is a CIA agent." He cannot confirm or deny that. By confirming it, he outted her.
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Daruma28
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But according to Wilson's own book, she was not a NOC since 1997. So how is that "outting" someone who was not even undercover to begin with?
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KnightEnder
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I could be wrong but I'm pretty sure O'Reilly said last night that if the operative had "ever" been undercover. I know for a fact that he said Valerie Plame qualified.

He also said that he wanted to know "where the Liberal idea of innocent until proven guilty was in this case."

Nice of him to admit that good ideas like that are ours.

KE

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javelin
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If she's hasn't been a NOC since 1997, and Rove didn't say she was a NOC, just confirmed that she was an agent, then what's the fuss, again?
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A. Alzabo
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quote:
If she's hasn't been a NOC since 1997, and Rove didn't say she was a NOC, just confirmed that she was an agent, then what's the fuss, again?
You're not allowed to do that if you know it as part of your clearance, javelin.

Edited to add: here's a link to one of the potential violations, but I think there are other information mishandling statutes that are also in play.

[ July 15, 2005, 09:08 PM: Message edited by: A. Alzabo ]

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