Osama bin Laden and Pakistan, Dick Cheney, and More Sunday Talk
Heated discussions about Pakistan’s involvement with bin Laden, Cheney wants to know why we don’t waterboard, Condoleezza Rice defends Tora Bora, and more in our Sunday talk round up.
Pakistani Ambassador: Trust Us!
In an interview with This Week’s Christiane Amanpour, Hussain Haqqani, Pakistan’s ambassador to the U.S., adamantly stated—as most officials have—that his country was not aiding Osama bin Laden. So who’s to blame for the terrorist’s fancy Abbottabad getaway? Haqqani pointed to “jihadi has-beens from the ‘80s” as well as mysterious “cracks” through which “things” fell through. That’s not very reassuring.
Cheney: Bring Back Waterboarding
Dick Cheney may be undecided on whether he’ll get a heart transplant, but he’s sure about one thing: If he were president, he’d reinstate waterboarding. On Fox News Sunday, the former vice president expressed concern that some of the techniques used to keep the nation safe for the past seven years have recently been dubbed “torture.” “It's not clear to me today that we have an interrogation program that we could put a high-value terrorist through," he said.
Donilon: No Evidence of Pakistani Foul Play
Tom Donilon, President Obama’s national security adviser, told State of the Union that there was no evidence that Pakistani leaders knew of Osama bin Laden’s location. The mansion’s proximity to a military academy, however, is something that needs to be investigated. The next step in Pakistan-U.S. relations: The U.S. has asked Pakistan for access to bin Laden’s three wives, who are currently being held in custody.
Rice Defends 2007’s Tora Bora Failure
So how does Condoleezza Rice feel about the New York Times story about the failed mission to catch Osama bin Laden in Tora Bora? In an exclusive interview with This Week, the former security of state recalled the 2007 mission. “You don't just stumble on Osama bin Laden,” she said, “There was supposedly this meeting that would take place, perhaps higher level enough for him to come, but in the end it didn't materialize."
Rumsfeld to White House: Give Less Information
Bush administration Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has some advice for the White House: The more information released about “Operation Geronimo,” the greater the danger for the American people. Speaking to Bob Schieffer on Face the Nation, Rumsfeld added that given the “fog of war,” the administration should have said less in the days after Osama bin Laden’s death. On the matter of waterboarding, he said that the “enhanced interrogation” technique has led to a major portion of what we know about al Qaeda today.
Pakistan Has Some Explaining To Do
Gen. Michael Hayden, former director of the CIA, isn’t convinced that Pakistan was not protecting Osama bin Laden. On Meet the Press, Hayden said that he was not aware that the Pakistani government helped in any way to find bin Laden. “They’ve got a lot of questions to answer and the burden of proof is on them,” he said.
Was Bush Playing Up the War on Terror?
In an interesting conversation on Reliable Sources, The Daily Beast’s Howard Kurtz and ABC’s Brian Ross discussed whether the media is now more complacent about terrorist threats or whether the Bush administration was playing up the war on terror for political reasons. To examine the issue, they looked at the recent report that the next target for terrorists would be the U.S. rail system.