Powell Defends Obama Security Policy

Monday, 22 Feb 2010 10:42 AM

By Dan Weil

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Former Secretary of State Colin Powell disagrees with those who claim President Obama has endangered U.S. security.

"To suggest that somehow we have become much less safer because of the actions of the administration, I don't think that's borne out by the facts," he said on CBS' "Face the Nation."

Powell also defends the policies of the Bush administration in which he served, and notes that Obama has continued most of Bush’s security measures.

"The Transportation Security Administration created by George Bush is still in action working in our airports," Powell said. "They take care of me every day that I go to an airport."

He notes that Bush also formed the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, "and it is still under President Obama, working hard."

Counterterrorism and law enforcement personnel are working hard too, Powell says.

“We have gone after the enemy in Afghanistan with 50,000 more troops, more predators are striking Al Qaeda and Taliban leaders in Pakistan,” he said.

“We have continued the policies that President Bush put in place with respect to Iraq. And so I don't know where the claim comes that we are less safe."

Former vice president Dick Cheney has recently criticized the Obama administration for ending the waterboarding technique to interrogate suspected terrorists.

Powell rebuts his former White House colleague.

"The point is made, 'We don't waterboard anymore or use extreme interrogation techniques,'” the former general said.

“Most of those extreme interrogation techniques and waterboarding were done away with in the Bush administration. They've been made officially done away with in this current administration."

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