Sunday, March 29, 2009

VIDEO: General Petraeus Rejects Cheney's "Less Safe" Comments

CENTCOM Commander General David Petraeus appeared on CNN's "State of The Union".

He refutes Dick Cheney's recent claim that Obama's foreign policy is making America "less safe".

Transcript from CNN:

KING: The vice president (sic) of the United States was a guest on this program two weeks ago. And he said something that caused a bit of a stir over at the White House and around town. I want you to listen.


KING: Do you believe the president of the United States has made Americans less safe?

FORMER VICE PRESIDENT DICK CHENEY: I do. He is making some choices that, in my mind, will, in fact, raise the risk to the American people of another attack.


KING: General Petraeus, you served in the Bush administration under Vice President Cheney and President Bush. You're now serving in the Obama administration.

Are the American people less safe because of this new president, as Vice President Cheney says?

PETRAEUS: Well, I wouldn't necessarily agree with that, John. I think that, in fact, there is a good debate going on about the importance of values in all that we do. I think that, if one violates the values that we hold so dear, that we...

KING: You mean torture?

PETRAEUS: ... we jeopardize -- well, in fact, I put out a memorandum to the soldiers in the Multinational Force-Iraq, when I was the commander, because of concern that we may not be taking some of these seriously enough.

As you know, the field manual came out, from the Army, that is used by all of the different services that completely, clearly outlaws torture. So we think for the military, in particular, that can't -- that's a line that can't be crossed.


KING: So was the line crossed in the Bush administration?

Was the line crossed? Did you do things which you fundamentally thought were wrong and immoral?

PETRAEUS: We certainly did not. Now, there were some incidents that did, and we learned some very hard lessons from Abu Ghraib and other cases. And we believe that we took corrective measures in the wake of that. And that is very, very important.

But it is hugely significant to us to live the values that we hold so dear and that we have fought so hard to protect over the years.

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1 comment:

  1. I think Petreus is a man who honors his country with his service.

    On the other hand, Cheney's interviews and comments to the media since he left office are disgraceful, classless and dishonorable. Even Bush 43 has stated he will maintain silence and support the president.

    As the full details of Cheney's obsession with the torture program emerge, and as the gruesome nature of the actual torture becomes clearer, he knows he will go down in history as a war criminal, defined for all time as the man who took America and the West to the dark side with no easy way back. He's trying to prevent that with the usual bluff and bravado. But even Bush isn't buying all of it any longer.

    It seems to me that what we need is simply more disclosure of all the government knows about what Cheney and Bush did.

    What Panetta and Rudman need to do is to find out and publish as much as possible about the facts of the torture techniques and, more saliently, what the results of the torture program were. We need to see what actual actionable intelligence we got from it, to evaluate the balance between false information and accurate information, and to find out just how intimately Cheney was involved in orchestrating, monitoring and presiding over the torture, from whatever distance. Until we know more facts, we cannot fully assess the damage. Right now, we just have blanket assurances from the accused that they did nothing wrong and saved many lives. What if that isn't accurate?

    Cheney is out there hurting his party, helping the president, and sowing fear - because he has to if he is to survive as anything but a pariah. The one thing he cannot stand is sunlight.