January 7th, 2010
09:10 AM ET
4 years ago

Giuliani: Obama needs 'major correction' on terror response

(CNN) – Echoing other high profile conservatives in the wake of the attempted Christmas Day terrorism attack, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani told CNN Wednesday President Obama waited far too long to react to the botched bombing and needs to make a "major correction" in the way he is dealing with terrorism.

Speaking on CNN's Larry King Live, Giuliani said the time it took the president to react to the attempted attack may "convince our enemies we are not ready."

President Obama first addressed the issue from his vacation spot in Hawaii three days after the attempted attack, calling for a complete review of the incident and the country's airline security policies. He then gave a public assessment of those reviews in a statement Tuesday, saying they had uncovered that "U.S. intelligence had uncovered numerous "red flags" prior to the attack."

"All this is ten days too late," Giuliani said. "This something you react to immediately. Not after your vacation. The president of the United States, when there is a potential massive attack on the country, should have been on top of it immediately."

Giuliani, who late last month announced he would not run for either governor or senator in New York this year, also faulted the administration for not classifying the bomber, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, as an enemy combatant.

"The minute you [don't designate him an enemy combatant], you cut off the ability to question him," Giuliani said. "I don't know the inside story. He was talking until he went out and got him a lawyer. You want to talk to this guy for a month. You want to keep him for a month or two get to get you a the intelligence he is going give you."

Giuliani's comments closely echo those of former Vice President Dick Cheney, who released a statement saying the president is pretending there is not a war on terrorism.

Speaking to Larry King, Giuliani defended Cheney's criticisms, though said he disagreed with some of them.

"Nobody was concerned about that when everybody criticized President Bush day in and day out including testimonies calling him names when he was trying to prosecute the war in Iraq, and Vice President Cheney is entitled to his view."


Filed under: President Obama • Rudy Giuliani
soundoff (127 Responses)
  1. Steve in Denver

    "All this is ten days too late," Giuliani said. "This something you react to immediately. Not after your vacation. The president of the United States, when there is a potential massive attack on the country, should have been on top of it immediately."

    More partisan ramblings from the guy who 100% supported George W "my pet goat" Bush, who, as an actual attack was occuring, sat for seven minutes without a clue.

    Rudy, the days of shoot first, ask questions later ended on 1/20/09. Our President now studies issues, investigates, and makes reasoned responses.

    And, by the way, when was the report out on the failures of intelligence that let the shoe bomber on a plane? Oh, that's right, W never investigated anything.

    You are a moron and a hypocrite. Glad we went with the smart one this time!

    January 7, 2010 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  2. mikl

    Don"t be mad mr Giuliani. Obama have no idia what to do. He is naive and know only bla-bla-bla.

    January 7, 2010 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  3. Joe

    Everyday all the repubs do is attack, attack, attack....These people are worse than the Talibans

    January 7, 2010 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  4. Baby Boomer

    OMG!!! These angry OLD men need to SHUT UP... Everytime they go on camera they send a message to those who want to harm us that the U.S. isn't united at all... Doesn't anyone remember the old saying, UNITED WE STAND, DIVIDED WE FALL...

    January 7, 2010 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  5. liberal wingnut

    Obama needs correction on about 90% of the things he does.

    January 7, 2010 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  6. SaintGenesius

    Yup -President Obama really needs to start hopping around like a dancing chicken and ultimately do all sorts of irrational things whenever something happens. You know, like Bush and Cheney did.

    That will show those terrorists. It sure will.

    Because the thoughtful, measured approach with positive results –that's a terrible way to behave.

    Guiliani should go back to being a "consultant" and hanging out with his criminal friends and leave the governing of the nation to grownups. Guiliani couldn't even run his own campaign, let alone the nation.

    January 7, 2010 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  7. CHANGE.COM

    Giuliani, like Cheney, should just shut up and go hunting together where they can, hopefully, shot each other in the face! The judicial system is fit to try any person at anytime, and there is a pretty good record of that. BTW Giuliani, Iraq did not attack us. Stop this nonsense. Bush-Cheney decided to avenge the attempted assassination of his father by Saddam Husein by attacking Iraq under the pretext of war on terror. AbdulMutallab, like other convicted terrorists, will spend their natural lives in one of the supermax prisons with little contact with anyone. That is how it should be.

    January 7, 2010 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  8. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    Same broken record and same denial of under their watch many died at home and in Irak from all talk and wrong actions!

    January 7, 2010 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  9. BJNJ

    Hey! Our rock star is just experiencing on the job training. He still thinks he can smile away problems. Frankly if another incident occurs Obama should resign. It's not the status of our anti-terrorism that's at stake, it's the celebrities' competence that's in issue.

    Bush and Cheney are snickering. This would-be bomber should be classified as an enemy combatant and shipped to Israel for interogation. Now he's a criminal defendant and is probably raising the 5th amendment. Cheney said Obama is putting this country's security at risk. Do we need another incident.

    January 7, 2010 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  10. Patriot

    This from the guy who thought it was a great idea to place his NYC Anti-Terror Headquarters in the World Trade Center before 9/11...yeah Rudy...your judgement is the model for the President...

    January 7, 2010 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  11. Lilarose in Bandon, OR

    Rudy, the only thing I remember you for are your marital problems.

    Not even 9-11 do I remember you for.

    Why don't you just shuddap and retire from something.

    January 7, 2010 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  12. Wayne

    Giuliani has about as much say in national politics as I do. Maybe less, since I work for a living and pay taxes.

    January 7, 2010 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  13. TM in CO

    You have experience with terror after the fact and I have a great respect for you on how you handled on and after 9/11. Please do not ruin that respect by becoming a Cheney clone. While you have a right to your opinion, about the only thing you are accomplishing by making statements and remarks of this nature is making our country vulnerable to another attack by making a potential terrorist believe that we have a week leader. You all need to stop. Write him a letter and quit making public statements that can be heard round the world

    January 7, 2010 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  14. Sniffit

    "Vice President Cheney is entitled to his view."

    And so are you Captain 9-11...and so are we entitled to respond to it as vociferously and virulently as we feel is necessary to expunge your and Cheney's brand of knee-jerk, myopic, dogmatic ideological reactionaryism from our society through the use of facts, evidence and a conccerted effort to educate those who seem stubbornly unwilling to be educated because they desperately want reality to bow down and scrape before their ideology, despite history showing us that it's been disproven and debunked.

    January 7, 2010 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  15. Stejo

    I just don't get how these guys can criticize the president for a slow response when their own guy in the White House took much longer to respond to the shoe bomber. I'm repeating what's been said repeatedly, I know, but they keep coming up with this crap as if they haven't heard the comparison. Oh, and the US legal system did just fine with Mr. Reid, so what's the big deal about not making the new guy an enemy combatant? Rudy, Dick, and the rest of them need to concentrate on important matters rather than use this attempted attack just for political purposes. It really makes me sick to my stomach.

    January 7, 2010 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  16. Sasha

    Nice to see that the GOP Talking Points fax-line seems to be working.

    The only thing surprising about Giuliani's statement is that he didn't somehow cram 9/11 into it. Presumably, it wasn't on the official talking points script.

    When Giuliani starts arguing that drug lords, kidnappers, and other such criminals be declared "enemy combatants" so that vital and timely information can be extracted from them, then I'll believe he's actually sincere in the belief that the nation needs to go beyond its legal limits to protect its citizens. Otherwise, Giuliani is just acting like what he is: an accountability-free, high profile, partisan hack.

    January 7, 2010 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  17. Mississippi Mrs.

    Americans (even those who voted for Obama), know that this administration has namby pamby, gotta-love-the-misunderstood-terrorist-who-was-probably-beaten-as-a-child, mentality.

    Gotta love this administration, they were probably water-boarded as children, and they are so misunderstood. We need to embrace them,
    if only to squeeze some sense into their feeble minds.

    BOZO-BAMA

    January 7, 2010 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  18. Lauren

    Heaven forbid a President have all the information available before making a statement. We all know that the Republicans prefer ignorant fear inducing tactics, but that is not how our President chooses to do things and for that I am thankful.

    January 7, 2010 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  19. Tom C

    Exactly Rudi, so were was these thoughts when George Bush read a book to grade schoolers while we were being attacked? What do you disagree with here? Are you against the extra troops in AFGAN. Are you against the drone bombings in Afgan? Are you against the tightening of security?. What a croc!!!!

    January 7, 2010 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  20. Tom C

    Exactly Rudi, so where was these thoughts when George Bush read a book to grade schoolers while we were being attacked? What do you disagree with here? Are you against the extra troops in AFGAN. Are you against the drone bombings in Afgan? Are you against the tightening of security?. What a croc!!!!

    January 7, 2010 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  21. Obama Mama

    Everyone loves to give advice but was never elected president. What a bunch of jerks....

    January 7, 2010 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  22. EL

    well the pot is calling the kettle black. he tthrew his wife away for another woman, did nothing for New York and he can talk,. we know why he's out of politic no one wants him putts!!! yayayaya! clown!!

    January 7, 2010 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  23. JP

    Ha! How does Giuliani know what the President does and doesn't do? Ridiculous.

    January 7, 2010 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  24. Sheena1a

    I Agree 110% With him, The President is putting this country at great risk, and is failing to acknowledge that we are at war with Terrorism.
    I am not sure if it is because he is so for the Muslims or what, but he better realize the Muslims are the terrorists, if he can't protect our country at the highest level, then he needs to step down immediately! Enough Said!

    January 7, 2010 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  25. Duck Fallas

    Rudy and the rest of the hyperbolic paranoid right are convincing the terrorists that conservatives welcome an attack on America in order to advance their selfish political goals.

    United We Stood.

    Treasonous traitors.

    January 7, 2010 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
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