U.S. President George W. Bush, who has often denounced leaks from the White House, has been named by a former official as the one who authorized disclosing sensitive information on Iraq 's weapons program. There's no indication that Bush directed anyone to mention the name of former undercover agent Valerie Plame in the high-profile CIA leak case that has long plagued the administration.
Bush repeatedly has deplored leaks and has maintained an appearance of distance throughout the CIA leak investigation, telling reporters in 2003: "I don't know of anybody in my administration who leaked classified information. If somebody did leak classified information, I'd like to know it, and we'll take the appropriate action."
But Libby's testimony, if true, places Bush in the middle of his administration's effort to undermine its critics at a time that the White House was preparing to make Iraq a central theme of the 2004 presidential campaign.
The intelligence report stated that Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein had chemical and biological weapons and was intent on acquiring materials for nuclear weapons. The report also said the State Department was ''highly dubious" about intelligence purporting to describe Iraq 's efforts to obtain nuclear materials.
But the court papers do not indicate whether Libby mentioned those doubts when he leaked information from the report, raising the possibility that Libby was leaking selectively in a way that overstated Iraq 's effort to acquire weapons of mass destruction.
It is uncertain what impact, if any, the leak had on Miller's reporting. Previously, the administration had cited Miller's stories about Hussein's weapons programs to buttress its case for war, the sources report.