Fair Game: My Life as a Spy, My Betrayal by the White House

Fair Game: My Life as a Spy, My Betrayal by the White House

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Fair Game: My Life as a Spy, My Betrayal by the White House by Valerie Plame Wilson

On 14 July 2003 in his syndicated column in The Washington Post, Robert Novak identified "Wilson's wife" publicly as "an agency operative on weapons of mass destruction" named "Valerie Plame". The column was a response to another, published by former Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson in the New York Times on July 6, 2003, "What I Didn't Find in Africa," in which Ambassador Wilson stated that the George W. Bush administration exaggerated unreliable claims that Iraq intended to purchase uranium yellowcake to support the administration's arguments that Iraq was proliferating weapons of mass destruction so as to justify its preemptive war in Iraq.

Novak's public disclosure of Mrs. Wilson's classified covert CIA identity led to a CIA leak grand jury investigation, resulting in the indictment and successful prosecution of Lewis "Scooter" Libby -- Assistant to the President of the United States, Chief of Staff to the Vice President of the United States, Dick Cheney, and Assistant to the Vice President for National Security Affairs from 2001 to 2005 -- for perjury, obstruction of justice, and making false statements to federal investigators.

Fair Game: My Life as a Spy, My Betrayal by the White House is a memoir that covers Mrs. Wilson tenure in the CIA, the leak of her secret identity, and the subsequent scandal. The book provoked a lawsuit even before its launching. In May, the publisher and Valerie Wilson sued J. Michael McConnell, Director of National Intelligence, and Michael V. Hayden, Director of the CIA, arguing that the CIA was "unconstitutionally interfering with the publication of her memoir, Fair Game, which is set to be published in October, by not allowing Plame to mention the dates she served in the CIA, even though those dates are public information."

The agency insisted that her dates of service remained classified and were not mentioned in the book, in spite of a letter published in the Congressional Record and available on the Library of Congress website from the C.I.A. to Ms. Wilson about her retirement benefits saying that she had worked for the agency since November 1985. The judged decided in favor of the agency. The CIA publication review board explained that the manuscript was "replete with statements" that "become classified when they are linked with a specific time frame", but cleared the way for the memoir to be published.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781410405425
Publisher: Gale Group
Publication date: 03/19/2008
Series: Thorndike Nonfiction Series
Edition description: Large Print Edition
Pages: 635
Product dimensions: 5.70(w) x 8.50(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

Valerie Plame Wilson (born Valerie Elise Plame in Anchorage, Alaska), known as Valerie Plame, is a former United States CIA officer who worked as a classified covert intelligence agent for over twenty years. She is married to former Ambassador Joseph C. Wilson, IV.

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Fair Game: My Life as a Spy, My Betrayal by the White House 3.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 18 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you are looking for a true spy story, this book is not for you. Thanks to the very heavy handed redacting by CIA censors, also a subject of the book, many interesting stories are maybe told, but you will not be able to read them. The complete picture of the years Mrs. Wilson spent at the CIA are finally put together in a very concise well written afterword by Laura Rozen with a lot of help, quotes if you will, from James Risen¿s book, ¿State of War.¿ An excellent book by the way, and an excellent resource for the real inside dope that was going on in our intelligence community as we geared up to the Iraq War. This book is more a personal story about one person and then one family. It is about growth, sacrifice, hope, love, patriotism and betrayal. Oh, and Post Partum Depression, 'PPD', yes that too. It is about the olio that is most people¿s lives with one enormous exception, most of us have never had the most powerful government on the planet deliberately targeting to destroy us. The Wilsons did. To give a complete picture of Mrs. Wilson, she is no shrinking violet, and no crazy liberal. She actually refuses to bad mouth William Casey and actually says he was the best CIA director of the past 50 years. Most liberals remember William Casey as the mastermind of the Iran-Contra operation and was then opportune enough to get Alzheimer¿s just as the scandal came to light, and very conveniently died soon after. She also underwent paramilitary training, and held many secret and dangerous positions within the agency. The picture that emerges is of a very patriotic American, who became disillusioned with GWB and his administration, but not her country or form of government. This book is almost a biography to date. Mrs. Wilson takes us through her childhood, upbringing and education. She then tries to tell us how and when she joined the CIA, and that is where the redacting starts. The story is later told by her mother in the afterword. The redacting gets so nick picking at points that she cannot even tell us how she met Joe Wilson. After you read it in the afterword you can see that the CIA really did not want this book out and did their best to kill it before it was published. She goes through her life at the CIA with many censor inflicted omissions. And talks about the birth of her twins and how she dealt with PPD. See a real person. Ultimately the gist of the book is a story most of us already know, and wondered how they dealt with it and what went through the Wilson¿s mind. In the process she also manages to shed some light on some of the developments of her Husband¿s trip to Niger and her outing that are not commonly known. This is an excellent account of the entire episode and what it means for our intelligence community and our national security. If you are not familiar with the story, this is an excellent inside perspective. If you are familiar with it you may be surprised at what you missed. If you can pick up a copy of James Risen¿s, ¿State of War,¿ I highly recommend that you do.
silencedogoodreturns More than 1 year ago
The redactions take all the potential spy plot sexiness away...the blatant self-serving political slant takes away any credibility or worthwhile reading. I didn't even recognize what happened to her from this novel compared to Robert Novack's Prince of Darkness. The first chapter of that book will tell you all you need to know about this farce. Thankfully, I read this from a library rather than buying it...recommend you do the same if inclined to read this.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just started listening to the CD version of the book. Only half way through chapter two and I am very frustrated. Almost impossible to follow a train of thought with so many 'beeps' (replacing the blacked out parts of the printed version. I'm going to keep on listening though, because it's too important a subject to give up on.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The title of the review conveys the sound that listeners of the audio book will become accustomed to. I understand that she was an employee of the C.I.A., and fully acknowledge the fact that the book had to be reviewed and properly redacted in the interests of national security. The specifics and what was and was not censored are not important, but Plame�s approach to dealing with the censorship is ridiculous. Filing a lawsuit in the name of �free speech� is all well and good, but as if it would cast the agency in a negative light, the censored material is left in the so-called memoirs, and for audio book enthusiasts, the �beep� signifying a portion blacked out in the paper version might become intolerable. Then there is the issue of content. Those that keep up with the news get the gist of the Plame affair, and it would be reasonable that she would include her past history of the agency in any attempt at a memoir. However, her style of writing is terrible, almost as if she strategically inserted adjectives in places she thought could be spruced-up in order to give the novel -which is what the book really turns out as, just written in first-person- a more �James Bond� feel. My third complaint is that the book goes from being a semi-biography to a tirade against the White House, and she stops just short of labeling herself a Democrat. Memoirs of politicians- those that have spent their whole lives in the political arena- can be political, a retrospective view on friends and enemies of the political past but Mrs. Wilson goes far beyond that, interjecting her political views, and openly supporting Kerry in 2004. She seeks to cast herself as a helpless victim and conveys here belief that Scooter Libby�s conviction and a Democratic congress will make things better. The fact is, this is no memoir, it is a book, and as is actually told in the book, was written to improve her family�s financial situation, brought up numerous times by the author herself within its pages. Bland, blackened-out, and just plain boring, this poor excuse for a memoir fails to serve up anything but a partisan and overblown view of the Plame affair.
KJG More than 1 year ago
I picked up this book hoping that it would be a page turner. The subject was one I wanted to explore and the price was right. I didn't really browse the book itself before buying it and that was my mistake. The introduction seemed interesting and clearly stated that some parts of the book were deleted after the book had been reviewed by some agency but that the author and the publisher felt the book still had enough merit to publish as is. Unfortunately that was not the case. In some sections, there were just a few things blacked out and although it interupted the flow of what was written, I still got the gist of what was being said. However, in several sections of the book large quantities where blacked out and missing. I felt that these missing sections did severely interrupt the story line and left holes in what was actually happening. This book was not the page turner I'd hoped it to be and I'm actually having trouble even finishing it. It is slow moving and uninteresting in parts. Save your money and get it from the library.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It starts slowly, but then this book becomes a fascinating read, less about details of the spy stuff, of course,and more about Plame's exposure. This is a couple with incredible patriotism, dedication and idealism that our country was so lucky to have serving us in their different capacities. The politicization of the CIA who are supposed to be gathering hard facts for our protection, is very, very scary. The redactions in the book make it all the more interesting.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book has lots of censored material. There are several interpretations for the censoring. There is indeed classified information, but I doubt that. There is material the administration does not want us to read which is probable. Material embarasses the administration which is quite likely. Considering that this administration has tried to make us believe Ms Plame was not a covert agent, it is surprising that any material is censored. I want to read the material that is censored to try to understand what the administration is trying to hide besides the obvious.
leytongirl_1995 More than 1 year ago
good for research it was pretty good but the blanks made it hard to follow.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
This was a truly great book that explains the corruption of the White House and top leaders. Since Valerie Plume Wilson was a CIA operations officer any material she had published had to be approved by the CIA. Hence, a lot of sentences are deleted. The government would like to portray Mrs Wilson as a secretary not a covert operations officer and wanted to exclude such details as her yrs of service with the agency. The epilogue in the back of the book which is written by someone else explains some of the gaps that the censors excluded. I applaud her and her husbands bravery in taking on the corrupt government. I highly recommend this book to anyone that wants to know what really goes on in Washington.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I found the book to be very informative and I commend Valerie Wilson for coming out with it. The thing I didn't like about the book was all the 'blackout' sections that the CIA said was classified. It made it difficult to follow the book and it really broke up the flow of the story. As an American I'm getting fed up with the lack of integrity shown by our top leaders and this has been going on for many years. You think we would have learned after the Nixon fiasco. I'm a Texan and I'm a Republican, but I have not been happy with the Bush Administration. It appears the reasons for entering Iraq and starting a war were bogus and evidently the CIA thought so, as well. The war has caused many thousands of unnecessary deaths of young Americans and we have very few friends and allies around the world. Whoever will take over as our next President will really have their work cutout for them. I just hope they're more honest with the American people and stop the insanity of putting our most dedicated public servants lives at risk.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I fear for my country when I read that someone this ignorant can obtain status within the C.I.A.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was eager to read this book to finally hear Mrs. Wilson's side of the story. Unfortunately the heavy-handed censors at the CIA have succeeded in destroying the flow and cohesion of this book by censoring massive blocks of text.I really feel that it's not a case her divulging sensitive material, but rather the long arm of Darth Vader Cheney once again squashing the truth to cover up the nefarious and reckless activities of the Bush administration.