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Reply #9: Could the Plame and Chalabi cases ultimately lead to the death penalty? [View All]

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milkyway Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-11-05 12:38 AM
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9. Could the Plame and Chalabi cases ultimately lead to the death penalty?
Within the Kos diary, jakethomson gives us the current wording for the Espionage Act. Here it is, with my emphasis added in bold:

__________

Section 793. Gathering, transmitting or losing defense information

(d) Whoever, lawfully having possession of, access to, control over, or being entrusted with any
document, writing, code book, signal book, sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, or note relating to the national defense, or information relating to the national defense which information the possessor has reason to believe could be used to the injury of the United States or to the advantage of any foreign nation, willfully communicates, delivers, transmits or causes to be communicated, delivered, or transmitted or attempts to communicate, deliver, transmit or cause to be communicated, delivered or transmitted the same to any person not entitled to receive it, or willfully retains the same and fails to deliver it on demand to the officer or employee of the United States entitled to receive it; or

and

8 USC Section 794. Gathering or delivering defense information to aid foreign government

(a) Whoever, with intent or reason to believe that it is to be used to the injury of the United States or to the advantage of a foreign nation, communicates, delivers, or transmits, or attempts to communicate, deliver, or transmit, to any foreign government, or to any faction or party or military or naval force within a foreign country, whether recognized or unrecognized by the United States, or to any representative, officer, agent, employee, subject, or citizen thereof, either directly or indirectly, any document, writing, code book, signal book, sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, note, instrument, appliance, or information relating to the national defense, shall be punished by death or by imprisonment for any term of years or for life, except that the sentence of death shall not be imposed unless the jury or, if there is no jury, the court, further finds that the offense resulted in the identification by a foreign power (as defined in section 101(a) of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978) of an individual acting as an agent of the United States and consequently in the death of that individual, or directly concerned nuclear weaponry, military spacecraft or satellites, early warning systems, or other means of defense or retaliation against large-scale attack; war plans; communications intelligence or cryptographic information; or any other major weapons system or major element of defense strategy.

__________

Section 794 allows for the death penalty for certain espionage offenses. This does not seem to me to be applicable to the outing of Plame (the info must be communicated to a foreign government, so it doesn't seem to apply--unless Judy is regarded as an agent of Iran).

But Section 794 may very well apply to the passing of info from the White House to Chalabi to Iran. Even given the present media climate, it was always bewildering to me that the Chalabi story received almost no attention from the media. Chalabi may have been Iranian agent trying to sucker the U.S. into deposing their enemy Sadaam so that a Shiite government can be installed in Iraq. Bush seems to be carrying out the Iranian plan just as they had hoped.
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