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With interrogation docs out, Cheney asks Obama to now release secret memos on what those techniques discovered

Former Vice president Dick Cheney Former vice president Dick Cheney is back.

Sure, you say, he's been all over since Jan. 20 knocking the new Obama administration for weakening U.S. national security.

This time though, two interesting points by the longtime Washington power denizen:

One, appearing on Fox News' Hannity show tonight and tomorrow, Cheney says he's got no problem with the Obama crew blaming the previous administration for inherited problems, as they've done so frequently since taking their oaths.

“There is a great temptation for a new administration to come in," Cheney says, "and when you find a problem, obviously, to blame it on your predecessor. We did it."

We have two videos of the Cheney interview below.

But what bothers Cheney this week is not so much that President Obama released the Justice Dept's memos on the CIA's enhanced interrogation techniques in recent years.

It's that the new president simultaneously withheld other classified memos that show what those interrogation techniques produced, the information that, Cheney says, those interrogations successfully helped prevent another attack on the homeland since 9/11. The results too, should be part of the national security debate, Cheney adds.

“One of the things that I find a little bit disturbing about this recent disclosure," Cheney tells Hannity, "is they put out the legal memos, the memos that the CIA got from the Office of Legal Counsel, but they didn't put out the memos that showed the success of the effort. And there are reports that show specifically what we gained as a result of this activity. They have not been declassified.”

“I formally asked that they be declassified now. I haven't announced this up until now, I haven't talked about it, but I know specifically of reports that I read, that I saw that lay out what we learned through the interrogation process and what the consequences were for the country.”

“And I've now formally asked the CIA to take steps to declassify those memos so we can lay them out there and the American people have a chance to see what we obtained and what we learned and how good the intelligence was, as well as to see this debate over the legal opinions.”

See Obama talk to CIA employees today on video below before Cheney's demand.

-- Andrew Malcolm

See another Cheney Hannity video below.

Photo: Saul Loeb /AFP / Getty Images

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In For A Penny In For A Pound
Obama you opened the door on this and to be fair you gotta release the secret memos on what the techniquest discovered. Gotcha.
Serves you right. Pushing a political agenda you now have to reveal state secrets or deny that anythign was gained from the techniques when Cheny, Bush and others, who have been kind to you so far by not bad mouthing your actions can disprove your statements.

Interrogation & U.S. Interests
How does the releasing of secret governmental documents or discussion documents on US interrogation procedures or processes serve Americas interests during a time of war.
Obama was not in power at the time and does not necessarily understand the situation, as well as the wealth or lack of info available, at the time these decisions were made. Hindsight is wonderful and he can commit publicly policy against harsh interrogation to the soldiers of nations subject to the Geneva Convention as well as to terrorists who serve no nation and are not subject to that convention since they never signed it. However, to open up the documents merely serves to smear the names of officials in the prior administration (I thought Obama won and the campaign was over) despite handing our enemies a nice unearned propaganda victory.
I can see how it serves the interest of Obama’s self esteem and fits within his Blame Others agenda but how does it serve my interests or the U.S. interests. I suppose it may even get Obama a Nobel Prize nod from the U.S. hating nations out there but is that really what he is in office for? He needs to do a reality check and remember he is the Commander In Chief, has US troops in combat situations and that he serves our interests first and not his own or the worlds.

Hey the guy has a point.

I hate when any administration picks and choses certain fact to push their own agenda.

Obama should not pay politics with these memo, since he has released it, he has to go all the way.

Pom Pom Girl, I assume you don't know that most of what Obama "revealed" was already made public in speeches of George Tenet and George Bush in 2006. This ain't new stuff.

If torture stops another 911...I say let's torture!!!!!
Al Queda and the Taliban cut off heads and brutalize the innocent!

likewise, who's to say that the vatican's witch hunts were not a success? don't millions of legally extracted confessions to horrendous crimes of thought and action clearly justify the employment of hell's heros with their unrivaled expertise to that effect, and sanctify their all-bountiful reward and worship ever after? come to think of it - i don't think so.

Obama is not a poker player and it shows. So far this week he has been rope-a-doped by Chavez, Ahmadinajhad and now Cheney. Welcome to the big leagues.

What, Cheney and Bush did this for kicks? How simplistic.

Of course there were results, and of course, the Dims. don't want that known.

It's amazing that this is considered in any way controversial. By God, this is our government, and we ought to know what was done for us.

And, be grateful that, for at least a short time, we had adults running the show and protecting us.

First, it's hard to take seriously these comments, coming as they do from an ethically challenged oil man who built his political career on distortions, half-truths and disinformation, aimed like a hunting rifle at the the public and the press.

The Vice-president felt no qualms whatsoever about hiding 99% of the facts, and releasing only the rosiest of scenarios, while acting as Bush's pit bull. But now, he's... outraged? Give me a break!

On the subject of Torture: It should be said that none of these so-called Detainees have been convicted of any crime whatsoever. Thus, a certain number are almost certainly there by mistake, and possess no useful information.

Any useful discussion must therefore also include an accounting of how many of these people were tortured and did NOT provide useful information, as well as how many others send investigators down blind alleys, because they just made up answers to stop the pain.

Civilized nations have Constitutions for a reason. If the Vice-president thinks Cruel and Unusual Punishment should be encouraged in this country, he should have a constitutional amendment introduced, to that effect -- rather than simply ignoring the rule of law, as he and the last administrations did on so many occasions.



now please go away,


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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