The Corner

Panetta on Cheney

One more thing before I sign off. I’m kinda shocked not to see any reaction on the Corner to CIA Director Leon Panetta’s reported — and, if accurately reported, disgusting — suggestion that Vice President Cheney would like to see the United States hit by a terrorist attack in order to show that he is right and Obama is wrong about national security policy. I don’t know Panetta but I’ve always admired him as one of the adults on the other side. I was glad to see him appointed at CIA (especially given some others this president might have appointed), so I must say I’m disappointed to be proven wrong — though that’s hardly the first time.

Beyond that, let me say this much about this galactically offensive remark. Democrats have been politicizing our national security, on an unprecedented scale from a major political party, for eight years. I suppose, then, that there’s nothing new here other than the fact that Panetta is infected, which shows how deeply the disease has spread.  But the stupidity of the remark is, to me, as alarming as the politicization of national security.

Vice President Cheney had low personal popularity polls because he didn’t respond to the Left’s turning him into Darth Vader — they went for political advantage, he worked to keep the country safe. Every time he’s gone public on something, he’s done so reluctantly, and it’s been because it was important to defend an essential part of the strategy to keep the country safe — and he’s won those public debates.

So here’s the commonsense question: Why would someone who did not care about his public popularity standings when it would have been in his personal interests to pay more attention to that stuff, and who did not care precisely because he thought it was more important to protect the country, NOW decide that he wanted Americans to die so he could prove a policy point?

It’s not just a disgusting personal attack, it’s a moronic one. Coming from the guy now analyzing intelligence for the president, it’s frighteningly stupid. I certainly hope he says he was misquoted or, as they say, “taken out of context.”  If not, it’s time for him, as they also say, to “spend more time with his family.”


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