August 25th, 2009
02:13 PM ET
9 years ago

Cheney takes swipe at Obama over prosecutor

Dick Cheney is criticizing the latest Obama move .

Dick Cheney is criticizing the latest Obama move .

(CNN) - Former Vice President Dick Cheney is again taking aim at President Obama, issuing a statement Monday suggesting the administration's decision to name a prosecutor to investigate CIA interrogations under President Bush fuels "doubts about this administration's ability to be responsible for our nation's security."

"The people involved deserve our gratitude," Cheney said in the statement. "They do not deserve to be the targets of political investigations or prosecutions."

The former vice president also said documents released Monday prove enhanced interrogation techniques yielded valuable information that "provided the bulk of intelligence we gained about al Qaeda."

"This intelligence saved lives and prevented terrorist attacks," Cheney said. "These detainees also, according to the documents, played a role in nearly every capture of al Qaeda members and associates since 2002."

"The activities of the CIA in carrying out the policies of the Bush Administration were directly responsible for defeating all efforts by al Qaeda to launch further mass casualty attacks against the United States," he added.

Related: Cheney says documents show interrogations prevented attacks

Late Monday, the government released declassified CIA documents originally requested last May by Cheney. The former vice president had argued they would show enhanced interrogation techniques saved lives.

While analysis in the documents says information from detainee interrogations "helped thwart a number of al-Qaida plots" and "arrests...disrupted attack plans in progress," it remains unclear from the heavily redacted documents whether that information was obtained through the enhanced interrogation techniques Cheney defends.

The documents' release came the same day Attorney General Eric Holder asked federal prosecutor John Durham to examine whether CIA interrogations of suspected terrorists were illegal after the release of a 2004 CIA inspector general's report into further questionable interrogation techniques.

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soundoff (312 Responses)
  1. John

    Sooooo, fact that it was not only against our laws, but also the Geneva Convention doesn't matter?
    Your administration was elected to UPHOLD the laws and Constitution. You failed us.

    August 25, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  2. T Mckinley

    People who torture and give America a bad name deserve our gratitude?

    August 25, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  3. Lynne

    Why is it CNN consistently buries the truth in the final part of an article; in this case in the second to the last paragraph??

    The headline could just as easily read : CHENEY'S CLAIM THAT TORTURE SAVED LIVES IS STILL NOT PROVEN!!!

    The man consistently lied and supported lies to get America to invade Iraq. How many lives were lost in what many people believe was an act of terror??

    August 25, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  4. William

    First of all, where was Cheney during the last eight years. Hecould never be found, far less asked to elaborate on any matter related to CIA interrogation techniques. Why is he now spouting off? No one has every proven that these methods ever thwarted attacks or saved lives, but I can assure you that Cheney is one of the most evil men to have ever serve this country. His actions have led to an increase in terrorism and a discredit our nation's image. If anything, his actions have further exacerbated the war on terrorism out of revenge and hatred. Today, there is a new generation bent on attacking this country as a result of the Bush and Cheney adminstration arrogant and disingenuous attitudes toward all Muslims.

    August 25, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  5. I can see Canada from my house!

    Unfortunately for Mr. Cheney, his statements will not sway anyone. The people that hate him will not believe him, his partisans will scream " I told you so", and the people who are tired of seeing this animated cadaver spur his way back onto the nation scene will say
    " Who cares"? Time for him to return to his crypt with Lynne and his gay daughter and lay the groundwork for his other ( straight) daughter to return to the public payrole and out some more CIA people who can't meet his standards for ideological purity.

    BTW, isn't there something else for CNN to cover?

    August 25, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  6. Brian0901

    Dick Cheney= A Real Terroist.

    Republicans had no trouble investigating President Clinton when there was no crime committed. In case there was a crime and the guilty need to pay.

    August 25, 2009 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  7. Patrick Fuchs

    Dick Cheney is a private citizen. Why do we care what Dick Cheney thinks any more than Mrs. Smith down the street? His opinion is irrelevant concerning government matters.

    August 25, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  8. bukowski

    the news always conveniently leaves out the important things and misdirects our attention somewhere else...exactly how did these interogations and tortures "thwart a number of al-Qaida plots" or "disrupt attack plans in progress"? the question is not "whether that information was obtained through the enhanced interrogation techniques Cheney defends" but rather whether interogation was even needed in the first plan...exactly what were these "al-Qaida plots" and "attack plans"...isnt that the important thing? why do people look over these things? why do people assume that what the media and the government tells us is true? so we not have more than enough proof that the american government (and especially the previous administration) is willing to kill and torture in the name of money?

    August 25, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  9. Jon

    Yeah right Dick! How about all those Al Qaeda terrorists we put on trial and convicted…oops.

    Breaking the law to capture someone you think committed crimes doesn't hold water with the constitution. And starting a war to capture terrorists is the single dumbest action we have taken.

    If the CIA was really good at using intelligence, then we could have taken care of terrorists without sending our Marines into a mess like Iraq. Instead we helped create more people willing to kill Americans than Al Qaeda.

    August 25, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  10. dark side

    Although its unpopular or un-cool to support anything that the previous administration did, I have to say that I support interrogation techniques that do not physically harm a person. Making someone believe that they may be seriously injured by firing a gun in another room or by making a drilling sound in another room without injuring someone is effective and does not have the barbaric characteristics of things like waterboarding. While psychologically damaging to a person, I don't believe it amounts to torture. Tickling someone until they talk just doesn't work. The ACLU should stop trying to go for its attention grab and start focusing on more meaningful issues.

    August 25, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  11. Chuck

    Dick should just fade into the past and stay there. Fact remains we were attacked on his and GW's watch. His daughter has said her father gave this country eight years without an attack. Guess she forgot what year follows 9/11

    August 25, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  12. former republican

    Hey Dick...ya got something to be scared about?

    August 25, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  13. Ren from Baltimore

    Mr. Cheney,

    It was your behavior and actions that resulted in this tarnish to the nation's soul. Do not blame anyone but yourself and your cronies. I don't know who in dickens you think you are, but "good American" you certainly are not.

    You have laid every single US troop, government worker, volunteer, and citizen open to the same kinds of tactics you not only approved but sought.

    Mr. Cheney, the world is on to you, and you know it.

    August 25, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  14. jeannettelj

    Does anyone still care what Cheney has to say?

    August 25, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  15. Obama supporter

    Dick Cheney and Bush should be in front of an International Court for war crimes. I want to see someone in jail for what they did.

    August 25, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  16. Chuck

    How can anyone continue to be deceived by Cheney's looks, lies and denials. This man ran and controlled the Presidency and that is why he now is at the forefront of defending it.

    Have you heard of the idiot Bush lately? For the first time, Bush is being smart and keeping quiet about "his" and Cheney's failed administration.

    August 25, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  17. Michael I Hastings Minnesota

    If they did indeed do nothing wrong then why worry ? Wasn't the GOP saying if we have notrhing to hide then why worry about the wiretaps

    There is a difference in keeping us safe and becoming what we are fighting against – in WW 2 we sent people to prison for doing what we are doing now

    August 25, 2009 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  18. Eric

    > "The people involved deserve our gratitude,"

    ...and you deserve a 6' x 6' cell at Supermax, Dick.

    August 25, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  19. james

    Hey Dick,
    America! Love it or leave it! Get out of my country if you hate it so much!

    August 25, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  20. Carolyn

    I am so ashamed to be an American when I hear that our country has used torture. I don't care what information is gathered from this – it is morally wrong. On top of that any information received from torture is not reliable. It is time for Americans to stand up and say NO to this and to prosecute those responsible for instituting this policy. All violence is terrorism.

    August 25, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  21. Mike Moderate

    Cheney...five time draft dodger....liar....all around scowling idiot.

    Now the ex pres wants to continue to "re-do" his role in the Bush Fanntasy world. Any one with any brains can see all Cheney wants is to stay out of jail.

    Cheney....on your tombstone........I lied ..people died.

    August 25, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  22. Ken

    This guy and his supporters, and what they represent, are the single biggest longterm threat to America. Al queda and other military threats are indeed serious, but we will handle them, and none will be able to bring down our country. Natural disasters we will recover from. But to base the government of this or any country on fear-mongering, lies, abject delusion and a perverted uber-partisan sense of obey your leaders at-all-cost is a recipe for disaster - our forefathers knew it, and separated from the institution (Great Britain) that was requiring of them these very things. Sorry, it seems trite, but the last significant rightwing government to follow this recipe was the Nazis, and you see what it did to Germany, and you see what it took to remove that stench from this world.

    August 25, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  23. Polar Bears Against Palin

    This piece of souless trash shold be thrown in prison. If there is any justice in this world, most officials of the Bush Administration will be indicted and put in jail. The most vulgar and corrupt administration in our country's history. Conservatives defending these practices are slime. Republicans seem to get off on guns, torture and war. What a pathetic and warped sense of values.

    August 25, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  24. Tommy

    I'm sure someone, or several people, told this idiot at some point in his career that nobody is above the law. Even the commander in chief and his subordinates. However, he is still not getting it.

    He's a nutjob who doesn't deserve a platform. But CNN, in their quest to drum-up conflict, and subsequently ratings, are more than happy to let him spew his vile-speak.

    Aim high, CNN!

    August 25, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  25. Wake Up

    Obama makes Bush/Cheney look like a dream administration. Obama loves distracting people from his awful policies. Obama, you are a fraud and we need you to step down.

    August 25, 2009 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
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