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June 15, 2009

Obama Should Fire Panetta For Cheney Smear -- But Supports Him Instead

Time to see the first high-profile firing of an Obama appointee. After all, this comment cannot stand.

CIA director Leon Panetta says it's almost as if former vice president Dick Cheney would like to see another attack on the United States to prove he is right in criticizing President Barack Obama for abandoning the "harsh interrogation" of terrorism suspects.

"I think he smells some blood in the water on the national security issue," Panetta said in an interview published in The New Yorker magazine's June 22 issue.

"It's almost, a little bit, gallows politics. When you read behind it, it's almost as if he's wishing that this country would be attacked again, in order to make his point."

Panetta then had the audacity to label Cheney's statements as "dangerous politics" -- not recognizing that the head of the CIA claiming that the second-highest officeholder in the previous administration is a crypto-traitor is significantly more dangerous. Indeed, I will label it as fundamentally unAmerican -- and any president who would permit such words to go unretracted and who would allow their speaker to stay in office would clearly be more partisan than patriot.

To argue that a patriot like Dick Cheney wants America attacked by terrorists is insane. For such a comment to come from the director of the CIA is intolerable, as it reeks of the politicization of the agency by the Obama regime.

Now let's review what the former vice president has said.

He has indicated that he believes that Obama's policies are wrong.

He has stated that he believes they render America less safe.

He has not in any way indicated he wants America to be attacked.

And, God bless him, Cheney has come out with a response that indicates he has infinitely more class than Leon Panetta ever could dream of having.

"I hope my old friend Leon was misquoted," Cheney said, in a written statement to FOX News. "The important thing is whether the Obama administration will continue the policies that have kept us safe for the past eight years."

On the other hand, Senator John McCain offered a much more strident defense of the former VP.

"I disagreed with the Cheney policy on interrogation techniques, but never did it cross my mind that Dick Cheney would ever want an attack on the United States of America," the former Republican presidential candidate said during an appearance on Fox News. "It's unfair, and I think that Mr. Panetta should retract, and retract immediately."

* * *

McCain said the remarks crossed a line, and said Panetta "knows better" than to level such a charge against Cheney.

Unfortunately, it appears that the Obama regime intends to stay on the low road, as indicated by the response of the White House press secretary to a question on the issue.

At his press gaggle, Robert Gibbs was asked: "Does the President agree with Director Panetta's assessment that Vice President -- former Vice President Cheney almost wants another attack to happen?"

Gibbs replied: "Well, look, I'm not going to get into motivations. That's not what our business is. The President's concern is keeping the American people safe. We've had policy disagreements, but I think what is true for anybody is doing what's -- doing what we need to to keep the American people safe and secure. That's what the President is working on every day."

In other words, Barack Hussein Obama stands by the words of his CIA director -- and implicitly joins him in questioning the patriotism of a man whose exemplary career of public service is nearly as long as Obama's life to date. Not only that, it is the latest example of the Obama regime and its supporters repudiating the notion that they trumpeted during the Bush years -- that dissent is the highest form of patriotism, and that it is a shameful thing to question the patriotism of those who criticize the policy decisions emanating from the White House.





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