October 22nd, 2009
06:33 PM ET
12 years ago

Gibbs hits back at Cheney

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/10/22/art.gibbs.cnn.jpg caption="White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs fired back Thursday at the latest criticism from Dick Cheney."](CNN) - White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs fired back Thursday at the latest criticisms from Dick Cheney, and suggested the Bush administration did not send U.S. troops into foreign conflicts responsibly.

"What Vice President Cheney calls 'dithering,' President Obama calls his solemn responsibility to the men and women in uniform and to the American public," Gibbs said. "I think we've all seen what happens when someone doesn't take that responsibility seriously."

Gibbs' comments come a day after the former vice president issued a blistering a wide-ranging critique of the Obama administration's foreign policy, saying Obama appears "afraid to make a decision" when it comes to troop levels in Afghanistan, and the president's indecision is "hurt[ing] our allies and emboldening our adversaries."

In his comments Thursday, Gibbs said the delay over a troop decision in Afghanistan is largely due to the fact the Bush administration did not adequately assess the conditions in the country ahead of sending troops there.

"I think it is a curious comment," Gibbs also said, "I think it is pretty safe to say that the vice president was for seven years not focused on Afghanistan. Even more curious given the fact that an increase in troops sat on desks in this White House including the vice president's for more than eight months - a resource request filled by President Obama in March."

"I find it interesting that he's blaming us for something that he didn't see fit to do over, best I can tell, seven years of a war in Afghanistan," he added.

Filed under: Dick Cheney • Popular Posts • Robert Gibbs
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. Dave

    Blaming the past administration for Obama's inability to accomplish jack is childish and pathetic. This administration has beaten that excuse into the ground. This country needs a president with some military experience, not a community organizer. I find it entertaining that they are forced to respond to Cheney's calling them out on their apparent failure to command our troops in Afghanistan.

    October 22, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  2. Jean

    I don't even want to imagine what it must be like to live in the alternate universe that Cheney lives in! He is an evil, vindictive old man. He can't tolerate the truth of what he and his cronies did to this country, so he just rearanges the reality to fit his purposes. Nothing has changed since they invaded Iraq! His universe is a very scary place.

    October 22, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |

    The Bush Administration invaded Afghanistan with no plan
    they Invaded Iraq with no plan
    they ran the country with no plan and into the ground!!! and now we the People are paying for it and President Obama and his Adminstration is trying to clean up the mess that was made God Speed President Obama!

    October 22, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  4. Cindy

    The more Cheney Speaks, the more it reflects on his Idiocy.

    Cheney's Speaking Helps Obama because Public Opinion becomes favorable for Obama. People Understand the difference between and Idiot (Cheney) and an intelligent man (Obama).

    October 22, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  5. g

    cheny more interested in halibutons profit ask dick what happened to nine truck loads of sadams money went

    October 22, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  6. Nick-o

    BOOO, Cheney, BOOO! As if that guys is worthy of speaking about national security. He played politics with our security...red...yellow...green...oh no, election coming up...back to red! hey, let's torture people...that'll fix everything...mission accomplished...well, is it?

    October 22, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  7. Bananarama Victim II: Electric Boogaloo

    No. Everyone knows you just blindly send troops to regions with brown people to fight in time of national crisis. Thinking these things through and planning just the right strategy is something a socialist would do!

    Look we were attacked by people from another country. Which country is of no concern as long as America can flex it's military might to conceal it's people's collective insecurities. Come on, that's US Government 101.

    October 22, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  8. tire of it

    Dick Cheney...shut up and please and go away. your haliburton interests are all you cared about to begin with. Mr. Gibbs...please shut up too. People want to see action and change, not whiney finger pointing. it would be best to take the moral high ground and just do something about the afghanastan issue, rather than to continually blame Bush for the problems you inherited...the American people know you were dealt a crappy hand, so stop bringing that fact to our attention.

    October 22, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  9. jd

    Well, I agree Obama should know what the strategy is before launching any changes, but he has been President for 9 months, and this war has been going on all that time, and even preceded his presidency. One might have thought he would take a few moments out of his personal appearance tours to think about the strategy well in advance of an eminent crisis.

    October 22, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  10. Cleaning up after W

    Tell it like it is, Gibbs! He makes a great press secretary.

    October 22, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  11. Treynor Monroeville PA

    Why bother to respond to anything Darth Cheney says? For one, responding to anything the most incompetent vice president in the worst presidential administration in this country's history only serves to puff up his already bloated ego. Even worse, it lends credence to one of the many bush administration members who really should be prosecuted for their actions during the eight long years that this country had to endure their sovereign rein.

    October 22, 2009 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  12. Marnier

    You the em' like it is Gibbs!! 8 YEARS of failed policies and continous LIES that killed thousands of our men and women, while Cheney spent the entire time in an "undisclosed location", kicking back , sippin on champagne and eating cheese cubes! Nice.. Mr. Cheney, with all due respect, please SHUT UP!

    October 22, 2009 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  13. Minnesotan

    Wow! Just wow!!!! Talk about a smack down...

    October 22, 2009 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  14. landscapebear

    finally getting some balls it sounds like and hitting back, good for them

    October 22, 2009 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  15. Dave of Old

    Who does Cheney support, The United States of America or its contractors? Cheney has been demonstrably wrong on so many counts since his days within the Ford administration. And now he exhorts his negative nellies to levels of stupidity. Yes, he and Bush did poorly to address the Afghanistan issues. He looks more like a Brezhnev than an Obama simply because he doesn't want to admit that the Bush/Cheney answer to Afghanistan was similar to that which the Soviets attempted in the '80's and that mired that country to such an extent it fell apart. The 17,000 troop alotment to Afghanistan was markedly reduced when that administration chose Iraq to focus on. In effect, it took the effort off of Afghanistan when victory might have been possible. Cheney has done what Cheney has been doing since those days in the Ford administration: He has been wrong so many times that that is what his world consists of. Wrong-way Corrigan may as well be Wrong-way Cheney because that is what Cheney's true legacy consists!

    October 22, 2009 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  16. Cab

    Now that's the way to fight a political war.
    "You send one of ours to the hospital, we send one of yours to the morgue."

    Every time one of these hate mongering war criminals opens his mouth, jam their own foot right into it. Let their own hypocrisy be our best weapon. Way to go Gibbs.

    October 22, 2009 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  17. Paul from Phoenix

    And was it his solemn responsibility to fly overseas to talk to the Olympic committee instead of talking to his Generals?

    At the point where Obama flew to fight for the Olympics, he had spoken to General McCrystal 1 time since his appointment. Bush spoke to his generals multiple times a week.

    But go ahead, I am sure this can be spun. Was Obama being more prudent in not speaking to his Generals?

    October 22, 2009 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  18. TLD

    The Republican Party is a disgrace and an abomination. There is something putrid about these guys and gals. The Republican Parties of past decades did not make me want to shower after I hear or see them speak on issues. I think it may have started with the Newt Gingrich Crew a few years back.

    October 22, 2009 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  19. Ryan, Denver

    Nice to see the adults wieghing in – it's too bad they even have to legitimize Chenny's assinine statement with a response.

    October 22, 2009 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  20. timz

    It's time to seriously consider the possibility that Dick Cheney hates this country and would do anything to bring down America.

    October 22, 2009 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  21. T Mckinley

    If anyone wants to know what Dick Cheney and his ilk are all about, go to a search engine and type in "Project for a New American Century."

    PNAC is a group of neocons who want the United States to be a bullying military empire, that uses it's military might to coherce other sovereign nations into doing what the U.S. wants.

    I think many of you will be interested to know who the members of this organization are.

    October 22, 2009 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  22. Bruce Dunai

    Gibbs is a talking puppet. Cheney simply read back Obama's campaign promise to US people and the troops and it is turning out to be a "bald-faced" lie. What more have we come to expect from Barak and this administration.

    October 22, 2009 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  23. Harvey Lovelance

    Speaking of chuzpaw, these guys don't have the guts to lead. Cheney for whatever his short coming may be, supported the troops and was committed to winning. The same can't be said for Obama and trusty side kick Bullwinkle. Obama is so strained by making a straight forward decision to commit to victory, that is has fortuitously paralyzed his socialist takeover of our economy. The Obamites talk a good game, but they can't hold Cheney's water.

    October 22, 2009 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  24. single mom

    Okay, Dems, if you can believe Gibbs when he says the Bush Administration didn't adequately brief the incoming Obama people on a war that had been going on for seven years already, (I mean, it wasn't a big surprise to them, was it?) then why do you insist that Bush had to have known about the Al Qaeda threat and the exact date, time and hows of 9-11?

    Can't have it both ways, people.
    FACT – Obama fired a four-star general, put his 'own' pick in to make the report, and has had said report for nearly 60 days. Obama met with McCrystal twice in nine months for less than an hour total.
    Could someone PLEASE tell the President that he has to make a decision? Yes or no, but make it. NOW. He can't vote 'present'. He has to make a decision. That's what all the campaigning was for.

    October 22, 2009 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  25. B Evans

    pathetic...that what this entire administration is to anyone with a brain. They have lied, failed to follow through on campaign promises, increased debt, increased taxes, slipped huge pork spending into a stimulus package that has created a whopping 30,000 jobs...the people who continue to support him are eitehr brainless or dead.

    October 22, 2009 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
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