If Cheney had some irrational need for payback (perhaps only triggered when learning that Mrs. Wilson was THE Valerie Plame of THE Brewster-Jennings) that may explain the bad judgment that made her fair game in his mind - regardless of the consequences for national security.
Hmmmmm. Valerie Plame does deep cover as an "Energy consultant" with a CIA front company, Brewster Jennings.
Which part of the CIA do you think would be warning the Import-Export Bank that the loan to Tyumen Oil was too risky?
Anyway, this incident is related by Jane Mayer in an important profile she did of Cheney for the New Yorker back in February '04. (About half-way down) though the article has several other dropping shoes worthy of being similarly brought back to light. (Read about the dove-tailing of Energy and National Security Policy under the aegis of that top-secret Energy Task Force....hmmmm - that was an interesting policy decision no one else has ever picked up or explored, too)
Here's that link:
I found this of interest and wondered if it would go someway to explaining the decision to target Plame - AND Brewster Jennings. I know people have been speculating that perhaps the Brewster Jennings crew were zeroing in on some funny BushCo Terror money links, but the idea that it could have been something so much more mundane as just kicking those bastards when he had a chance has a logic to it as well.
It's the kind of irrational motive, the desire for petty vengence, that seems to run in the veins of these maniacal types and so often predicates their downfalls.
Further to this, I also wonder if part this is orchestrated to ensure that Cheney doesn't run for President in 2008. Although continuing to pretend no interest in the throne (see Richard III) Cheney has been lining up his ducks for some time now. Wasn't that the reason why his medical issues of the last few months have been so under-reported? The fear that that might weaken his chances?
Odds are Bush knew full well about the whole campaign against Wilson. (Spite and dirty tricks are the things Bush loves about Politics) but there seems no chance they are going to let him take the hit on this. From Cheney's pov, obviously, nothing could suit him more than seeing Bush go down in flames but the old guard is gathering around Bush to ensure that the Cheney-Rumsfeld cabal is the meme that rules the day.
(Of course, the President could have another Pretzel crisis. If Cheney can find any means of seizing the throne before the FitzGerald indictments go to trial then, obviously, all bets are off.)