Former Vice President Dick Cheney called out the Obama administration Wednesday and said President Obama is dithering on General Stanley McChrystal request of sending 40,000 troops to Afghanistan.
Cheney called on the White House to do what it takes to win.”
“Make no mistake. Signals of indecision out of Washington hurt our allies and embolden our adversaries,” Cheney said while accepting an award from a conservative national security group, the Center for Security Policy.
The former Vice President disputed the White House claim by Chief of Staff Rahm Emmanuel that the Bush Administration left was not paying attention to Afghanistan all the while focusing on Iraq and it was the Obama Administration had to create it own policy on Afghanistan .
Chaney says that the Bush White House provided the Obama Administration information on Afghanistan by review its polices and procedures and presented them to the Administration.
“They asked us not to announce our findings publicly, and we agreed, giving them the benefit of our work and the benefit of the doubt,” Cheney said. The strategy Obama announced in March bore a “striking resemblance” to what the Bush administration review had found, the vice president said.
Last Sunday Chief of Staff Emmanuel criticized the Bush Adminstration on it Administration Policy on CBS’s “Face the Nation”. He was also on CNN where he was on State of the Nation program.
“When you go through all the analysis, it’s clear that basically we had a war for eight years that was going on, that’s adrift, that we’re beginning at scratch, and just from the starting point, after eight years,” Emanuel said.
Cheney said the Obama Administration is playing the blame game.
“The White House must stop dithering while America’s armed forces are in danger,” the former vice president said. “It’s time for President Obama to do what it takes to win a war he has repeatedly and rightly called a war of necessity.”
Well today the White House fired back
White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs
“What Vice President Cheney calls dithering, President Obama calls his solemn responsibility to the men and women in uniform,” Gibbs said Thursday. “I think we’ve all seen what happens when somebody doesn’t take that responsibility seriously.”
Gibb called the Cheney remarks “curious” and proceed to criticized the Bush Administration taking years to provide for the troops.
“I think it’s pretty safe to say that the vice president was for seven years not focused on Afghanistan,” Gibbs said. “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.”
Cheney remarks came as a keynote speaker the Center For Security Policy Annual dinner. When word of Cheney remarks the West Wing was fired up.