Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Is Wolfowitz's girlfriend, Shaha Riza, a spy?

* clemons:
"Is Shaha Riza a Spy?
World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz's girlfriend, Shaha Riza, for whom Wolfowitz arranged not only jobs, incredible pay raises, automatic "outstanding" ratings in performance reviews, but also -- apparently -- a security clearance, is probably not a spy. But our system of national security "secrets management" is not based on trust. It's based on multi-pronged, overlapping constant investigation -- human and electronic.

It would be important for any senior State Department or Defense Department official tasked with maintaining the integrity and security of classified material and information to approach Shaha Riza -- a Libyan national raised in Saudi Arabia -- who was the "girlfriend" of the Deputy Secretary of Defense -- as if she could be a spy.

This is not a matter that those who would know Ms. Riza or who trust Wolfowitz's judgment should say "how dare someone raise that question?!" This should be the question that should have been asked at every stage of Shaha Riza's apparent penetration of the Department of Defense, the Department of State, and the private firm, SAIC.
Senator Jay Rockefeller, Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, or Rep. Henry Waxman, who is one of the best and most tenacious investigators of government abuses, or some other concerned member of Congress should call for a Department of Defense investigation into Riza's security clearance, Wolfowitz's role in fast-tracking the clearance, and the State Department's seeming absence of any record confirming her clearance when Shaha Riza was granted unescorted access at the Department of State.

This "could" be serious -- and the question of whether Shaha Riza is a spy or not should not be a matter for pundits to debate. Anyone getting access to the nation's secrets is scrutinized as a potential leaker, a potential spy -- but it appears on the surface that Paul Wolfowitz may have helped his girlfriend get in on the inside without much of that scrutiny."
From the comments to an earlier post of mine:

"I agree: Riza's move (to State) is mission-specific"
"Riza would have been an excellent mole and go between for Feith and Wolfowitz...I would very interested in knowing who she had contact with or consultations with in Iraq."

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