February 4th, 2009
12:38 PM ET
11 years ago

Obama making U.S. less safe, Cheney says

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/02/04/art.cheney.gi.jpg caption="Cheney said the Obama administration's policies are making the country less safe."]

(CNN) - The Obama administration's new policies on Guantanamo Bay prison and the treatment of detainees makes it more likely a terrorist attack against the United States will succeed, former Vice President Dick Cheney said Tuesday.

In an interview with Politico, the former vice president issued a stringent defense of the Bush administration's record on the war on terror, and said he worries the President Obama has already made the country more vulnerable.

Earlier: Cheney: Bush should have pardoned Libby

“When we get people who are more concerned about reading the rights to an Al Qaeda terrorist than they are with protecting the United States against people who are absolutely committed to do anything they can to kill Americans, then I worry,” Cheney said in the interview published Wednesday.

Cheney also predicted the Obama administration is likely to backtrack on its pledge to end coercive interrogation techniques, since the protection of the United States from terrorists is a "tough, mean, dirty, nasty business.”

"These are evil people. And we’re not going to win this fight by turning the other cheek," he said.

The blunt comments come two weeks after President Obama issued executive orders that will close Guantanamo Bay within a year, and shut down secret CIA prisons abroad. Obama also signed an executive order calling on U.S. personnel to follow the Army Field Manual's guidelines when it comes to interrogation.

Related: What's next for Guantanamo Bay detainees?

In the interview, Cheney suggested Obama was irresponsibly adhering to “campaign rhetoric,” and called Guantanamo Bay a “first-class program.”

Filed under: Dick Cheney • President Obama
soundoff (712 Responses)
  1. Karen- Change is coming

    Cheney should shut his PIE HOLE! I mean exactly that! Cheney was a disgraceful Vice President and went out as such in a wheel chair. The Former President and his side tick sunk this country directly in the ground and we the American citizens are paying dearly for it. Please Mr. Cheney no more advice and please disappear from the radar. Thanks for your useless comments.

    February 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  2. Gary T.

    I Can't believe that such a foolish person became Vice-President!

    When a people surrender their ideals there is Nothing left to defend!!

    Simple but true! A Child under ten knows & understands this – apparently you Mr. Cheney do NOT!!

    You inspired more hate for America! You did Not help keep it Safe!

    February 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  3. mike from c-bus

    Hey Dick,
    When your administartion and party were voted out of office, that meant your opinions too. Chickenhawk.

    February 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  4. Mrs G

    Sit your old AA down and Shut up already!

    February 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  5. bill from pa

    So when does this moron's war crimes trial start. do us all a favor Dick, shrink into oblivion already

    February 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  6. ms williams

    Please, You can't be concerned and highly vocal now. Cheney, you had 8 yrs. to do something and you slept. Do America a favor, "GO BACK TO SLEEP" blue eyed devil. If we perish on Obama's watch, at least we was'nt sleeping.

    February 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  7. Remi N.

    Is this guy still alive???? Told lies to american people about WMD in Iraq and got more than 4 thousands americans killed, thousands wounded and hundred of thousands of irakis dead and now you have some to say.. Please be quiet and enjoy your oil money with Bush..
    Let a new team works in the White House.

    February 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  8. James in Utah

    I also disagree with the Pres. Obama's actions on GTMO. It only takes one of those prisoners who wanted to do harm to the U.S. in any capacity to be set free to do it again. These people are there because they have shown they wanted to do the U.S. harm or help others to do so. It is a mistake to let them go.

    February 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  9. Zoran

    Dick should shut his mouth up and be very happy because he is not behind the bars, yet.

    February 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  10. NPS

    No one cares what this guy thinks, and in fact as soon as Dick "there never was a day I could not be bought" Cheney opens his flap on something, the first thought of the majority of us is to believe exactly the opposite of what he says. One can only hope that he ends up in jail for the many crimes he has perpetrated against us all, in the constant attack on our constitutional rights. This man is a corporate mouthpiece and as un-American a person as I have ever met. He did more to advance the cause of the extremists (but there was a purpose in all this as his corporate sponsors benefited economically as a result of all the nice fat government contracts handed out) then did Bin Laden. Hard actually to figure out which one of the two was the bigger terrorist!

    February 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  11. jbrowne

    Cheney is an evil gasbag and should just go away. His administration has run this country into the ground. The last thing we need is advice from this moron and his rich buddies.

    February 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  12. vic

    So, long as we torture people we'll be safe???
    Just another distraction from the GOP – also another means to try and clean up the legacy of the Bush Admin.

    February 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  13. William

    This type of talk is why the Republicans are not in the White House, and why they are again the minority in both houses of Congress.
    The former V.P would be better off just fading away than spreading his blather all over.

    February 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  14. Tobie

    Cheney really needs to shut the hell up and go away!

    February 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  15. Tim S

    Thank God this war mongering liar no longer pulls the strings of a "president"

    February 4, 2009 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  16. HoldenLitgo

    Cheney was irrelevant as VP – except for his criminal activities – and is no more relevant, nor less a criminal, now that he is back in the private sector.

    February 4, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  17. Reid Jones

    Who care what Dick Cheney says. He and Bush had 8 years and look where we are today because of them. Good Riddance.

    February 4, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  18. Ron from Baltimore

    The ex-VP is looking for speaking engagements. He has to have _some_ topic to harp about, doesn't he? Please, just return those millions you already scarfed from us, keep enough to get out of the country, and do so now.

    February 4, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  19. Jamie from Philly

    "These are evil people."

    Evil knows evil, doesn't it, Dick?

    February 4, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  20. Shaneeeza

    Cheney, you had your chance and didnt do a great job. Stop hating and let the MAN do his JOB. Thats the beauty if America, we are aloud to be for or against WAR. The people has spoken, and YES the US has used tactics that were out of standards with the Geneva convention and you should be charged with Terrorrism.

    February 4, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  21. Tex

    "tough, mean, nasty"? Ha, guess it takes one to know one.

    February 4, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  22. JT

    Where has Cheney been ? Now he's on TV going negative on Obama,
    We have already have had 8 years of negativity. Obama is taking ownership of mistakes, like Kennedy did re: the Bay of Pigs. Cheney & Bush have not taken ownership of the costly war & its aftermath. Oh,
    and Cheney is now in the lap of luxury w/his severance pay from his ex-company Halburton which is now in Dubai avoiding any taxation!!

    February 4, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  23. Tomas E

    Chenney, shut the up! No one wants to hear your mouth go off. After all, you murdered, tortured and screwed many people. Why should anyone listen to you?

    February 4, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  24. brad in austin

    Mister Cheney, you're done, finished, out of office, and should be resting and preparing for a visit to the Hague.

    February 4, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  25. Marian E. Paul

    Get your foot off President Obama's neck. You've done enough damage to our country, already. #41 should never have let you loose to "advise" 43. You are a money machine, in name only. Get lost and let our poor government recover from you and the "Shrub".


    February 4, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
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