January 3rd, 2010
01:00 PM ET
10 years ago

Brennan: Cheney wrong to criticize Obama

Washington (CNN) - Former Vice President Dick Cheney either "willfully mischaracterized" President Barack Obama's terrorism policies or is "ignorant of the facts," Obama's anti-terrorism czar said Sunday.

In comments on "FOX News Sunday" and NBC's "Meet the Press," John Brennan - the deputy national security adviser who is Obama's assistant on homeland security and counterterrorism - said partisan sniping diverts attention from the terrorists trying to harm the country.

Last week, Cheney said Obama had made the nation less safe by pretending there was no war against terrorists. Cheney, who spoke after the failed Christmas Day terrorist bombing of a U.S. airliner, was a main driver of the previous administration's controversial anti-terrorism policies.

Obama has ended or scaled back some of those policies, and Brennan said Sunday that critics were wrong to question the president's resolve.

"It's disappointing to me that either the vice president and others have willfully mischaracterized President Obama's position and actions, or they're just ignorant of the facts," Brennan said on the FOX program.

A former CIA agent who has served five administrations, Brennan said Obama's commitment to national security and fighting terrorism matched any other leader he has known.

Brennan said the unwarranted criticism "made people lose sight of who the real enemy is here."

"Al Qaeda has been responsible for the deaths of many, many Americans," Brennan said. "At this time right now, after this failed attempt, I think what we have to do is to think back after 9/11 when this country came together, when Democrat and Republican said, 'We have to make sure that we are able to stop al Qaeda from carrying out its acts of terrorism and trying to murder innocent civilians.' "

Filed under: Dick Cheney • John Brennan • President Obama • Terrorism
soundoff (61 Responses)
  1. Rajinder Goyal

    Dick Cheney is in no position to criticize anyone, least of all our President. He should not forget the totally unnecessary and fabricated war in Iraq that plunged the country into one of the worst crisis in US history, a war that cost close to two trillion dollars, according to some estimates. That partly explains the huge deficit the country faces. Take a look back the same time last year, and one can see a clear positive difference in just about everything. Cheney and his boss left the country in a terrible shape, and President Obama has managed to turn it around.

    Cheney should stop meddling in how Obama handles. He should enjoy his retirement amd leave the governing of the countyry to President Pbama's hands. The country is in good hands.

    January 3, 2010 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  2. Ted from Calif.

    Mr. Cheney seems to have forgotten that 9/11 happened on his watch. How can he claim that he and Bush kept the country safe when they allow the terrorist attack on the homeland and then let the mastermind of the attack go free.

    Perhaps Cheney should also explain why Halliburton made billions in Iraq. Is it because Cheney steered business to his former?? company?

    This draft-dodging traitor should be tried for treason!

    January 3, 2010 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  3. Four and The Door

    When you compare Cheney's criticism to Obama and Hillary Clinton trying to convince Americans that war in Iraq was "...unwinnable" during the Bush administration, Cheney's type of criticism is much more justifiable and productive.

    January 3, 2010 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  4. David in West Virgina

    It is stupid that Dick Cheney's comments get so much attention. Afterall, as Vice President, was he not head of the CIA Intelligence that was revamped under the Bush Administration? Did they not drop the ball! Blame intelligence, not the President. He can't be everywhere.

    Finally, Congress has no right to criticize the President while they are holding up his nominee in the TSA. Senator DEMint is deminted!

    January 3, 2010 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  5. ANDROLOMA, Commerce City, Colorado

    New decade.

    America's overdue for a new enemy. Muslim Chinese, maybe? Or communistic Arabs? Socialist Europeans? We still haven't been to war with the eskimos yet.

    January 3, 2010 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  6. nate

    Mr. Chaney I am a re pub you sound like a terrorist with your negetive comments

    January 3, 2010 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  7. They call me "tater salad"

    In Dick Cheney's case I would have to say that he is most definitely "ignorant of the facts" as are ALL Republicans!.......History proves it every time.

    January 3, 2010 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  8. jim

    criticism is fine ... regardless of who is doing the criticizing. we just have to "consider the source" when we hear the criticisms.

    and cheney ... well ... he's not even remotely believable, and so his criticisms are worthless when it comes to improving government direction.

    January 3, 2010 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  9. AL

    Duck Tape Remember Cheney Bush Administration Advised Duck Tape the doors and windows to prevent Nuclear Attack Terrorist prevention.
    People have Short Memory

    January 3, 2010 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  10. once upon a horse

    wow he said that on FOX NEWS??? I'm shocked that they didn't bleep it out or as Bill O is known to say "CUT HIS MIKE!!"

    January 3, 2010 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  11. Sabrina

    Cheney is a bitter old man who cannot take responsibility for his own actions. It's really sad.

    January 3, 2010 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
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