June 1st, 2009
04:04 PM ET
5 years ago

Carter sounds off on Obama


(CNN) - Former President Jimmy Carter tells CNN he believes photos showing detainee abuse should be released to the public - putting him at odds with President Obama, who has said the release of those pictures could endanger U.S. troops.

In an interview set to air Monday night, Carter told CNN's Campbell Brown some of President Obama's supporters are disappointed in him. "Most of his supporters were hoping that he would be much more open in the revelation of what we've done in the past," said the former president, although he added that he still respects Obama's judgment on the issue: "I don't agree with him, but I certainly don't criticize him for making that decision."

Earlier this month, Obama asked government lawyers to stop the release of photos showing prisoner abuse in Iraq and Afghanistan, a reversal of an earlier White House position. Hundreds of photos were set for release after a Freedom of Information Act request was filed by the American Civil Liberties Union.

Carter also seemed to disagree with Obama on what should happen to Bush Justice Department officials who signed off on waterboarding and other harsh interrogation tactics. Carter stopped short of calling for immediate prosecutions, but did suggest they might be appropriate in the future.

"What I would like to see is a complete examination of what did happen, the identification of any perpetrators of crimes against our own laws or against international law," he told Brown. "And then after all that's done, decide whether or not there should be any prosecutions."

The new administration has not definitely ruled out any prosecutions, but President Obama said on several occasions that "we need to focus on the future."

Campbell Brown's full interview with Former President Carter will air Monday night on CNN at 8 pm ET.


Filed under: Jimmy Carter • Popular Posts • President Obama
soundoff (301 Responses)
  1. Shahid

    I just can believe with the right mind voting for Carter. He's the biggest joke, contributing the most to tanishing Americans images.

    June 1, 2009 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  2. Dave C - NJ

    Yes Doug in NJ...as usual you have it all figured out.

    Obama and Carter had a secret meeting to pretend to disagree with each other so that the Right Wing Nuts (that have offered NOTHING as far as solutions to anything) will be kept on their toes.

    L O F L

    June 1, 2009 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  3. JOSEPH BUTTACAVOLI

    Boy do i love when u talk about nobama. look how fast they hate it. America is the laughing stock of the world. thanks mr. president. go on another date at the tax payers expense, how about you get in the car and stay in washington and stop flying our plane all over the place, don't you know gas is not cheap.

    June 1, 2009 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  4. Mari( maybe one of my comments will be posted)

    **** CNN who is "Joe Buttacavoli"??? His comments appear many times, when some of us, can't get ours posted! What's up!?******************

    What vile and hypocritical comments are being posted by the GOPers!

    And you people, claim to be Christian???????

    President Jimmy Carter, is a Veteran, and served our Nation well. Show some respect! Since YOU are the people with the "Support our Troops" on your cars & trucks.

    TORTURE IS WRONG. YES, RELEASE ALL TORTURE DOCUMENTS AND PHOTOS........ SO WE CAN SEE THE HORRORS THAT WERE DONE IN OUR NAME!

    BTW GOPers; statistics show that 2,500 Americans dies every day of heart disease. And the statistics on dying in a terrorist attack???

    ONE ......... in 9.3 million! THE BUSH REGIME WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR 9/11....... LET'S NOT FORGET WHO GOT THE INTELLIGENCE REPORTS WRONG!

    June 1, 2009 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  5. Anonymous

    To Peter E:
    Not only did Reagan trade weapons in exchange for hostages but he also sold them weapons parts. Ollie North (Fox News "hero") diverted the funds from those sales to contra rebels in Nicaragua - called them "Freedom Fighters."

    "Proud Member..Party of No" must not recall how much money Reagan printed to cover his borrow and spend policies. The Party of No doesn't like "tax and spend" policies (which is how government pays for the services the people demand) so they borrow and borrow and borrow, then leave it to the Democrats to try to dig us out of the hole they dug.

    June 1, 2009 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  6. gl, Pittsburgh

    Not Left or Right but Forward

    Your comment is spell it out. Thanks for you comment.

    June 1, 2009 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  7. chuck Tulsa

    This is a tough subject, but I believe the President is listening to his military advisers on this issue and he is right. While we have boots on the ground, the release of those photographs will only incite additional violence against our service members.

    The time to look at the photographs is in a court of law with those individuals responsible for ordering the abuses sitting at the defendants table.

    June 1, 2009 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  8. jon c. sprowl

    why do you print anything that carter says ? he was one of the weakest presidents that we evrer had. his opions are are a joke.

    June 1, 2009 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  9. Mari( maybe one of my comments will be posted)

    @ "Qui-Tam Realtor" ...... You are a fake! No way did your vote for Hillary and then Obama!

    June 1, 2009 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  10. Romney2012is ignorant

    Hey Romney2012,

    I just refied for under 5%. What are you talking about? Bush was the problem and Obama is the answer. Romney will NEVER become president – he's a caricature who will say anything and change is opinion 10 times a minute.

    June 1, 2009 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  11. Dave C - NJ

    Actually BUSH was the worst president ever. By a long shot.

    I love how the right wing nuts keep saying Obama has destroyed the country without citing one example.

    Dumb and Dumbest.

    June 1, 2009 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  12. Fair is Fair

    @ Ken in NC, who opined,

    "While I respect former President Carter, I respectfully disagree with his position on the release of the pictures in question. The pictures could pose the same problem for our troops overseas as Gitmo does to troops."
    __________________________

    Hypothetically speaking – if there was a Republican in the White House, whould you feel the same way? Be honest...

    June 1, 2009 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  13. patriot

    Uh oh! Disagreement between Carter and Obama. This poses a true dilemma for the Neo-cons! What will Rush do? Who will he choose to bash in this one? Stay tuned!

    June 1, 2009 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  14. Reggie Gabr, Independent

    Why doesn't any prominent liberal say "I want a complete examination of what happened with ACORN during the presidentials" ? Ahh, cause it's going to hurt their "chosen one"...So much money into AUTO industry and voi-la they still go for bancruptsy. Government AND corrupt UNION will cut the pie and eat it, leaving us in the dark of their 'transparant' dealings, why don't you Jimmy say any, ANYTHING that is TRUE but INCONVENIENT for you Obama-maniacs

    June 1, 2009 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  15. JOSEPH BUTTACAVOLI

    we ain't talking about heart attacks you moron. were talking about your stupid president. not mine i didn't vote for this idiot.

    June 1, 2009 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  16. Jessica

    I don't accept Obama's explaination, for one – the troops and our leaders are the people who put the rest of the troops in harms way by engaging in this behaviour – NOT the release of the photos.

    Second, those who support "torture" as acceptable means of obtaining information, wont argue that by torturing we are "breeding more terrorism and hate" (which is the arguement for shutting down quantanamo) then how can releasing photo's of us "torturing" or at least humiliating detainee's put our troops in harms way?

    I think Obama probably has a good feeling that the courts are going to authorize the release of these photo's – and so he tried to appear in the middle on this one, appeasing the right by "protecting" the jerks that are amongst our armed forces (on all levels)...and in the end, what Obama KNOWS should happen, will happen...he'll just go down as looking like the guy who "tried" to be supportive of our armed forces.

    It's a tough move to make, because he loses points with me on the "transparency" he's promised us, that so far hasnt really showed up, anywhere.

    Transparency is my biggest single disappointment with Obama.

    June 1, 2009 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  17. demwit

    30 years from now we'll be laughing at Obama the same way we now laugh at Carter. It's a liberal thing...

    June 1, 2009 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  18. Terry

    With all due respect to President Carter, he should focus on building homes for Habitat for Humanity. Mr. Carter new more about peanut farming than he did about being the President of the United States. The interests rates we experienced during the Carter Years were far worse than the current national banking and home mortgage crisis. I believe that history will show that Barack Obama has accomplished more in 130 days, than all of the previous six presidents combined, over a similar period of time. Washigton needs to get to work, something I know is a new thought for most members of the Congress and Senate.

    June 1, 2009 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  19. revolution

    Is Jimmy Carter still alive??

    June 1, 2009 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  20. John in Ohio

    "The following is a direct quote from Pravda:"

    I'm almost 100% certain that Pravda has never ever had an article that included the word "sheeple". But way to try to generate fear by using a scary sounding name associated with Soviet Russia.

    June 1, 2009 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  21. Christy

    Have any of you taken a class called "history?" The point of knowing what HAS been going on is to learn from the mistakes. This is America. WE pay for this country and we're entitled to know everything that puts us at risk. He is as secretive as Bush and therefore, is about as trustworthy. Did Obama forget who voted him in and funded his campaign? You are all s the same suckers who said "Bush is president so we'll just ride his shirttail to hell." Get off your fat a's and givem' hell. THIS is opur country and we want truth and prosecutions.

    June 1, 2009 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  22. Nathan,

    I agree with Carter. I believe full disclosure of the criminal years of the Bush/Cheney regime is in order. If we're truly a nation of laws and we preach this to the rest of the world then why are we afraid to show them that we walk the walk. I think Obama is making a big mistake by not revealing what we did. Not revealing it makes it more likely to happen again the next time we vote in criminals.

    June 1, 2009 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  23. Doug

    President Carter who brought HUMAN RIGHTS to the world in his administration is right. He is also relevant in his support for a Palestinian State that is leading the discussions in the Middle East.
    As a democrat, I respect his views and his promotion of them. This is a democracy and his term is over but the future belongs to all of us.

    June 1, 2009 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  24. James M. Holmes

    LOL... I love all the silly NeoCons saying Carter was the "Worst President EVER"...

    I'll agree he wasn't a very good one, but it is pretty safe to say that G. W. Bush is the WORST PRESIDENT EVER!

    Hands down...

    June 1, 2009 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  25. JOSEPH BUTTACAVOLI

    Tell nobama to send you a VOUCHER(stimulous) for a new computer if yours is not fast enough.

    June 1, 2009 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
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