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Ex-CIA spy blasts White House
Valerie Plame says top administration officials "recklessly" abused her identity.
Last Modified: 16 Mar 2007 19:38 GMT
Valerie Plame said she was shocked by the behaviour of White House officials [AFP] 
A former CIA agent has accused the US government of blowing her cover while she was gathering intelligence on Iraqi weapons.
 
Valerie Plame told a US congressional committee on Friday: "My name and identity were carelessly and recklessly abused by senior government officials in the White House and State Department."
In 2003, Plame's husband, former ambassador Joseph Wilson, accused the Bush administration of exaggerating the Iraqi threat to justify going to war.
 
Soon afterwards, US media revealed that Plame was a CIA agent, citing anonymous administration sources.
Wilson has alleged the move was an act of revenge by the White House for his opposition to the Iraq war.
 
On March 6, Lewis "Scooter" Libby, former chief of staff of Dick Cheney, the US vice-president, was found guilty of perjury and obstruction of justice in the case.
 
He faces up 25 years in prison. Sentencing is set for June 5.
 
Hard blow
 
When she discovered her cover was blown in the newspaper, Plame said: "I felt like I had been hit in the gut.
 
"It (my career) was over in an instant. And I immediately thought of my family's safety, the agents, networks that I had worked with."
 
The former CIA operative also said her covert job seeking intelligence about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction and ability to make secret missions overseas was abruptly ended by the disclosure.
 
Plame said she could not discuss details in public as she appeared before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.
 
She also said though she believed other operatives had also been affected, an internal CIA review was not shared with her.
Source:
Agencies
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