It’s been somewhat amusing this past week to hear media types express surprise over the fact that last week’s attempted bombing of Flight 253 resulted in an immediate round of partisan finger-pointing on Capitol Hill. I’m not sure what people were expecting after a year that must have set the record for bitter partisanship battling, but I shudder at this point to think what it would to take place to have both parties agree on…anything.
Yesterday, the always helpful former Vice President Dick Cheney got in the mix telling Politico that “as I’ve watched the events of the last few days it is clear once again that President Obama is trying to pretend we are not at war.” Which is a bit much for any number of reasons not the least of which (really not the least…more on that in a moment), is that President Obama just sent 30, 000 extra troops to Afghanistan last month. Cheney goes on:
He seems to think if he has a low key response to an attempt to blow up an airliner and kill hundreds of people, we won’t be at war. He seems to think if he gives terrorists the rights of Americans, lets them lawyer up and reads them their Miranda rights, we won’t be at war. He seems to think if we bring the mastermind of 9/11 to New York, give him a lawyer and trial in civilian court, we won’t be at war. He seems to think if he closes Guantanamo and releases the hard-core al Qaeda trained terrorists still there, we won’t be at war. He seems to think if he gets rid of the words, ‘war on terror,’ we won’t be at war. But we are at war and when President Obama pretends we aren’t, it makes us less safe. Why doesn’t he want to admit we’re at war? It doesn’t fit with the view of the world he brought with him to the Oval Office. It doesn’t fit with what seems to be the goal of his presidency — social transformation — the restructuring of American society. President Obama’s first object and his highest responsibility must be to defend us against an enemy that knows we are at war.”
Really? Well Rachel Maddow for one isn’t having it. After bemoaning the Dem’s lack of response to the flurry of criticism coming from the right she hits back at both Cheney and the party as a whole (video below) for both their inaccuracies and hypocrisies :
“Republicans left to their own devices have in this case excitedly launched a series of obviously baseless, factually incorrect, demonstrably untrue, hypocritical attacks. Dick Cheney comments today probably the worst among them.”
Maddow then proceeds to list a litany of names and events that happened under the Bush-Cheney watch, which also made us less safe according to Cheney’s description of yesterday. These would include: Richard Reid and Zacharias Moussaoui and Guantanamo. All of which appears to put Maddow in the awkward, Catch-22-ish position of defending Obama against Cheney using the argument that if Cheney and Bush did it it makes it all right? Or merely makes Cheney a hypocrite. The mind reels.
Perhaps the only conclusion to really draw from all this that when it comes to politics and national security during the Aughts aught has really changed. Maddow’s full response is below.
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