Former Vice President Dick Cheney has caused a stir within the past week, taking shots at many of his colleagues during the George W. Bush administration, namely former U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell.
The former VP said that he thought Powell took criticisms about Bush’s policies outside the administration, and also said that he took credit for Powell leaving the administration shortly after Bush’s first term.
Cheney, who’s promoting his new memoir In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir, said that his book will cause the heads of many in Washington, D.C. to “explode” upon reading.
Sunday on CBS’ Face the Nation, Powell ripped his former colleague. “I mean he takes great credit for my resignation in 2004,” he said. “Well President Bush and I had always agreed that I would leave at the end of 2004, after the election. I stayed on for three more months because I wanted to and there were some conferences that I wanted to attend, and because Dr. (Condoleezza) Rice hadn’t been confirmed (as Powell’s successor). So there’s no news there.”
Powell’s chief of staff, Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, also told ABC News that Cheney “was president for all practical purposes for the first time of the Bush administration,” which Cheney has denied during his recent media rounds. He also said that Cheney “fears being tried as a war criminal.”
Wilkerson, who has known for the former Vice President for decades, says he doesn’t recognize Cheney anymore.
“I think he’s just trying to, one, assert himself so he’s not in some subsequent time period tried for war crimes and, second, so that he somehow vindicates himself because he feels like he needs vindication. That in itself tells you something about him,” Wilkerson said.
Wilkerson also added that Cheney likes to criticize people other than himself. “Cheney was a good secretary of defense in my view. In fact I would put him up amongst the top three in the short history of the position. No longer do I feel that way, and I don’t know what happened to Cheney.”