December 30th, 2009
12:45 PM ET
8 months ago

Cheney: Obama pretending we are not at war

Cheney is out with new criticisms of Obama.
Cheney is out with new criticisms of Obama.

(CNN) – In blistering new comments Wednesday, former Vice President Dick Cheney says President Obama's reaction to the botched terrorist attack on Christmas Day is proof the president "is trying to pretend we are not at war."

In his first statement since the Christmas Day terror attempt, Cheney hits Obama for what he describes as the president's "low key" response to the events last week, and criticizes the administration's broader approach to national security.

"He seems to think if he gives terrorists the rights of Americans, lets them lawyer up and reads them their Miranda rights, we won’t be at war," Cheney says. "He seems to think if we bring the mastermind of 9/11 to New York, give him a lawyer and trial in civilian court, we won’t be at war. He seems to think if he closes Guantanamo and releases the hard-core al Qaeda trained terrorists still there, we won’t be at war."

Cheney adds that Obama outwardly "pretends we aren't [at war]," and the former vice president repeats his months-long criticism that the new president has made America "less safe."

"Why doesn’t he want to admit we’re at war?" Cheney asks. "It doesn’t fit with the view of the world he brought with him to the Oval Office. It doesn’t fit with what seems to be the goal of his presidency – social transformation—the restructuring of American society."

Democrats note President Bush was not subjected to criticisms from either Democrats or the media when he waited six days to respond to Richard Reid's attempted shoe-bombing of an airline on December 22, 2001. Like Obama, Bush was on vacation when that botched terrorist attack occurred 8 years ago.

Full story
Full statement after the jump

Statement from former Vice President Cheney 12/29/09:

As I’ve watched the events of the last few days it is clear once again that President Obama is trying to pretend we are not at war.

He seems to think if he has a low key response to an attempt to blow up an airliner and kill hundreds of people, we won’t be at war.

He seems to think if he gives terrorists the rights of Americans, lets them lawyer up and reads them their Miranda rights, we won’t be at war.

He seems to think if we bring the mastermind of 9/11 to New York, give him a lawyer and trial in civilian court, we won’t be at war.

He seems to think if he closes Guantanamo and releases the hard-core al Qaeda trained terrorists still there, we won’t be at war.

He seems to think if he gets rid of the words, “war on terror,” we won’t be at war. But we are at war and when President Obama pretends we aren’t, it makes us less safe.

Why doesn’t he want to admit we’re at war?

It doesn’t fit with the view of the world he brought with him to the Oval Office. It doesn’t fit with what seems to be the goal of his presidency – social transformation—the restructuring of American society.

President Obama’s first object and his highest responsibility must be to defend us against an enemy that knows we are at war.


Filed under: Dick Cheney
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. Jack

    Please

    Mr. Cheney. You are no longer in the loop. Your comments don't carry the weight that they did.

    You need to take an example for your former boss Shut up!

    December 30, 2009 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  2. Ronal Reagan

    A better question would be, why does Mr. Cheney insist we call it a "War"? So the GOP can use it to scare people, and allocate funds to the military contractors? .Al Quaida is a criminal organization, not a military one...right?
    Seriously why is Mr. Cheney obsessed with this?

    I find it amusing that the Teabaggers are up in arms now, wanting to spend Billions to fight terrorism when they were nitpicking $10,000 government expenditures just last spring. You're more likely to die from a household electrical accident than by terrorism.

    December 30, 2009 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  3. Tammy

    Who started the war? Cheney, go home and shut up.

    December 30, 2009 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  4. Humble American

    Dear Mr. Cheney:

    Will you ever get it that your continued rants just don't matter anymore?
    Actually, I was thinking that you would be in jail by now. I have a hunch that President Obama is the one keeping you out. The reason is this: Don't allienate the country.
    Instead of telling lies and blasting inuendo, maybe you should be thanking Barack Obama for saving your butt.

    Now, shut the hell up and go away. Far away. Most of us are sick of you.

    December 30, 2009 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  5. Aaron from Idaho

    I think if you're going to continue to print these comments by Cheney (because they're sensational), you should also print evidence that indicts him of war crimes, and shows that the administration he was part of was asleep at the switch prior to 9-11. It's ridiculous that this man gets a "pass" by the national media. Maybe if folks were a little more critical of his past actions, he'd keep his mouth shut.

    December 30, 2009 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  6. markiejoe

    Cheney needs to keep his pie hole shut.

    December 30, 2009 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  7. Greenwood,IN

    The President gave exactly the right response to a would be bomber-No-we are not planning to invade Yeman and kill everyone, as I am sure Cheney would do. I think Cheney has a mental illness that makes him want to gun everyone who disagrees with him down-but only after waterboarding and other torture. It was Bush and Cheney who made us so unsafe.

    December 30, 2009 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  8. Mike

    Would somebody tell Dick that he is no longer relevant? His 8 years of fame are up...time to go back to an undisclosed location and never be heard from again.

    December 30, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  9. Robin in Tampa, FL

    Wow Dick, the Bush administration gave the shoe-bomber Richard Reid, the first guy who tried blow up a trans-Atlantic flight after 9/11, a trial in Federal Court, and he was quickly prosecuted and now resides in a Colorado Super-Max prison. I don't see why the Obama administration should treat the Christmas flight bomber any differently than how the Bush Administration treated the shoe-bomber.

    December 30, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  10. dem

    shut up you war mongering idiot...we are at war because of YOU and your terrorist administration...and yeah...obama just sent 30,000 more young men and women into harm's way because he's denying that we are at war!! get your sixth heart attack and die already...nobody cares about you anymore and nobody ever did!!!

    December 30, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  11. Sean

    Why is it that Obama cannot blame Bush, yet Cheney can keep throwing the blame on Obama? Well.... for those of you who are trying to tie the hands of Obama, in order to make the failed administration of the Bush.. looks good, just by talking and not facts.

    December 30, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  12. Jen K

    Given the sheer volume of subjects that Cheney has been wrong about, how anyone gives him the credibility to criticize anyone is beyond me.

    December 30, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  13. thomas

    Cheney Still Pretending he Matters.......

    December 30, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  14. Brown

    He's Back!!!! I'm puzzled. I guess everything Cheney says I guess we dumb people are suppose to believe and everything President Obama says or does is incorrect just because Cheney says it. Glad I'm not the dumb people he's talking too. I guess we are in for more of the same form Cheney in year 2. Wish he wouldn't have waited until after the new year to start his whining so I could have made my new year's resolution to ignore him for 2010....

    December 30, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  15. Fred Ray

    It was nothing like the 7minutes Bush sat in that class room like a deer caught in the headlights. Besides, what good would it do to panic in front of the whole country and spout words like. 'Wanted Dead or Alive!" I seem to recall that approach didnt hack it. I do pray that Pres Obama is not going to rush into any 'Pre-emptive' war with anyone. Just get our intelligent community to working together for real (not just words) and we will solve this problem....Hey, whats wrong with our System of Justice??? Are we afraid we will not seek the truth?? It is far better to let one guilty go than to imprison hundreds of others without due process.. Let the cool heads prevail....

    December 30, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  16. N Miller

    Who cares what this man thinks. He and Bush created this ongoing mess and now all the people of this world have to deal with the mess they made. President Obama has become the "Clean Up Man".

    Cheney, would you please go back under the rock and stay forever.

    December 30, 2009 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  17. king keith

    Why are old men so mad at the world.When he was VP he killed so many people in the name of freedom.No matter what he saids this was a failed attempt unlike what happen on his watch 9/11.

    December 30, 2009 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  18. joe orrach

    It is clear that Cheney misses the spotlight. He is the one, along with Bush, who have put the American people at risk with an irresponsible war. It isn't Obama that is denying a war situation he just feels there are other ways to approach it. Let us not forget the lies Cheney has told the world and the reason why America is in this situation. The reason we are in this mess is because Cheney put is in there.

    December 30, 2009 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  19. Kenneth

    Ever since Obama took office, Dick Cheney has been practically praying for another terrorist attack. Let's not forget that by this time in The Bush presidency New York was still smoking from 9/11 on his watch.

    December 30, 2009 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  20. Bob in Kansas City

    And this come from a man who blatantly lied to the world that WMD was the reason to kill millions of Iraq citizen including 4000 of his own when he knew from square one is was an intentional fabrication in order for his family to profit hugely from! Go and DIE somewhere Dick Cheney!

    December 30, 2009 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  21. Steve Martin

    Cheney seems to think he is still the Vice President. He is the one responsible for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Obama has had to clean up his mess. This incident on Christmas Day could easily have happened under Bush

    December 30, 2009 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  22. Steve, NY

    Obama is another Jimmie Carter. Bring Bush back, Jeb Bush that is.

    December 30, 2009 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  23. Jason P.

    And Cheney "seems to think" that every day Americans forget who started this war in the first place. Still further, he "seems to think" that Americans still care about what he thinks! When do we finally get to stop hearing from him and the other Bush cronies? I wish the "long national nightmare" of Bush-Cheney could just be over and done with.

    December 30, 2009 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  24. So true!

    "It doesn’t fit with the view of the world he brought with him to the Oval Office. It doesn’t fit with what seems to be the goal of his presidency – social transformation—the restructuring of American society."

    -----------

    Bu it DOES fit with Obama's total lack of experience outside the realm of community organizing, voting "present" in the Senate, his political teething at the feet of Saul Aulinsky, Jeremiah Wright, Bill Ayers - and other anti-American radicals. The unicorn rider is getting his rude awakenings daily now. I just hope the American people do, too.

    December 30, 2009 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  25. Bob (Illinois)

    Please shut up and GO AWAY! Find something productive to do.

    December 30, 2009 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12