Mystery spy penetrates Philadelphia suburbs?

There's a saying that "all politics is local," but it never ceases to amaze me the way national issues can literally reach out and touch things in my own backyard.

Since returning from California, I've tried to keep up with the Mary McCarthy CIA leak story (one of the big stories of the weekend according to Glenn Reynolds and knowledgable bloggers like Belmont Club and Tom Maguire.)

Here's NRO's Andy McCarthy:

There is no mention by the Post -- none -- that Mary McCarthy is a big Kerry campaign and Democratic Party contributor.

How can the WPost justify reporting one friend's mere impression that McCarthy is not biased and that it is very difficult even for those who know her well to understand why she would leak sensitive information, and yet not report the objective fact that -- after a meteoric professional rise in intelligence circles during a Democratic administration -- McCarthy, while a government official on a government salary, gave at least $7700 of her own money in a single year to Democratic political campaigns?

Given the Post's delicate posture in this case -- having been the recipient of at least one highly sensitive leak on a subject about which it chose to publish a story damaging to national security -- you would think they might perceive a special obligation to play it down the middle here. But apparently not.

What is this woman? A leaker or a campaign contributor?

Not that I keep track of national issues as I should, but frankly, it surprised me to see that the spy in the center of all this national action actually took the time to contribute money to the campaign of [Philadelphia suburban] Congressman Curt Weldon's opponent, one Joe Sestak:

The senior intelligence analyst who was fired Thursday by the CIA is a supporter of Democratic congressional candidate Joseph Sestak, which U.S. Rep. Curt Weldon’s campaign charged is further evidence that the former Navy admiral cannot be trusted on national security issues.

Mary McCarthy was dismissed for leaking classified information about the CIA’s secret overseas prisons to The Washington Post, several media organizations reported Saturday.

Sestak, who served as director for defense policy on Bill Clinton’s National Security Council, received two donations from McCarthy last month totaling $350. McCarthy also contributed $2,000 to Sen. John Kerry’s 2004 presidential campaign.

Weldon’s campaign reiterated that Sestak accepted contributions from former Clinton National Security Adviser Samuel "Sandy" Berger and former CIA Director John Deutch -- both of whom have admitted to mishandling classified information.

"‘Where will this end?" asked Weldon campaign spokesman Michael Puppio. "Sestak and the Clinton people are attempting to infect Delaware County with these scandals."

As to McCarthy's motive for contributing to Weldon's opponent, it may be personal. Weldon's campaign suspects that McCarthy was out to discredit his book, Countdown to Terror (which involved the Able Danger allegations):
Weldon officials also suspect McCarthy leaked information to the media last year in an attempt to debunk the congressman’s book, "Countdown to Terror," which is highly critical of the CIA. Weldon plans to call for a FBI investigation "to see what national security information she leaked and who she leaked it to," Puppio said.
In his discussion of McCarthy's other contributions, Tom Maguire called them an "Impenetrable Mystery."

Not that I'm penetrating any mysteries here, but why the hell is this Mary McCarthy messing around with elections in the Philadelphia suburbs? Why does she want to defeat Curt Weldon?

Might it just be the Able Danger investigation? Or might this be evidence that she's a rogue operative?


(You'd think the Democrats would lay low in these matters.)

posted by Eric on 04.23.06 at 09:49 PM


"Leaker or campaign donator?"


Alan Kellogg   ·  April 24, 2006 7:57 PM

What they also aren't reporting is that McCarthy might not be the leaker at all. Both her and her attorney have denied that she was the source of the leak. The odd part is that her firing was leaked and in that leak, they said she confessed. So that leak is not even true. It's impossible to really know who's being honest.

Shawn   ·  April 26, 2006 7:02 PM

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