Cheney: Politicization of National Security

Dick Cheney has spoken out previously about his concerns over the Obama approach to the War on Terror (if, in fact, it still exists). Last Sunday on Fox News, he continued to share his views, and he didn’t hold back.

Attorney General Eric Holder’s decision to investigate CIA interrogators angers Cheney. He forcibly argued,

It’s an outrageous political act that will do great damage, long-term, to our capacity to be able to have people take on difficult jobs, make difficult decisions, without having to worry about what the next administration is going to say.

He called the probe a “terrible precedent,” allowing an “intensely partisan, politicized look back at the prior administration.” But he didn’t stop there, as he took aim directly at the president:

I have serious doubts about his policies. . . . Serious doubts, especially, about the extent to which he understands and is prepared to do what needs to be done to defend the nation.

Obama claims that this was not his idea, that it was the decision of the attorney general. Well, just who’s in charge of this administration? Doesn’t the attorney general sit on the president’s cabinet? Isn’t he in his position to carry out the president’s policies? As Cheney correctly noted,

I just think he’s trying to duck the responsibility for what’s going on here, and I think it’s wrong. . . . The matter’s been dealt with the way you would expect it to be dealt with by professionals. Now we’ve got a political appointee coming back, and supposedly without the approval of the president, going to do a complete review, or another complete investigation, possible prosecution of CIA personnel.

At the time these interrogations were being conducted, officials constantly checked with legal authorities in the government to determine what was proper and what was not. Now they are being second-guessed—and the entire issue has been politicized.

I appreciate the former vice-president’s willingness to speak forcefully and draw attention to the blatant political nature of this investigation. And I also believe his warning that if we don’t stop this type of backstabbing, we will only endanger our national security. The nation’s security should be above politics.

Keep speaking, Mr. Cheney.