Liz Cheney, daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, had some harsh words for House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi on Tuesday.
"Mrs. Pelosi's problem is that her spine doesn't seem to reach her brain," Cheney said during an appearance on Fox News Channel's "Fox & Friends" in response to Pelosi's comments about Cheney's father regarding the CIA's enhanced interrogation program that took hold in the post-9/11 era.
During Sunday's "State of the Union" program on CNN, Pelosi said Cheney "set a tone and an attitude for the CIA" during President George W. Bush's time in office. "I think he's proud of it," she said.
A 6,300-page report put together by the Senate Intelligence Committee has called waterboarding and other forms of harsh interrogation cruel and ineffective. The panel voted 11-3 to declassify and release 500 pages of it.
"My dad has been and remains a steadfast supporter of the enhanced interrogation program that saved lives and prevented attacks after 9/11," Cheney said. "Frankly, Mrs. Pelosi is somebody who was briefed on the program, she forgot she was briefed on the program, and later had to admit it.
"We've got too many in Washington who were all in favor of doing everything necessary to defend the nation after 9/11, and now seem to be not interested in looking at the facts but really just looking for a way to cast blame and say things that aren't true about those brave men and women."
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The decision to release the Senate report has ruffled many feathers in Washington, including those of the CIA man who was in charge of the secret program: Jose A. Rodriguez Jr., former director of the National Clandestine Service.
"Intelligence work is like doing a thousand-piece jigsaw puzzle without the picture on the box top and with millions of extra pieces," Rodriguez wrote
in a Washington Post op-ed.
"The committee staff started with the box top, the pieces in place, and pronounced the puzzle a snap.
"There was never any effort to mislead the administration or Congress about the program . . . In 2006, then-CIA Director Michael Hayden expanded those fully briefed on the program to include all members of the intelligence oversight committees. It is a travesty that these efforts at transparency are now branded insufficient and misleading," Rodriguez wrote.
Also during her "Fox & Friends" appearance, Cheney pledged her support for water-boarding — which was reportedly used on at least two al-Qaida prisoners, Abu Zubaydah and Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, as the CIA tried to find who was responsible for the 9/11 terrorist attacks and thwart any future attacks.
Some Democrats expressed shock at the report's findings, while Republicans argued the information included did not provide a complete picture.
"It was absolutely the right decision. And, certainly, I hope that future presidents would make the decision again that you've got to water-board somebody," Cheney said.
"Which attacks would you have let happen? Which Americans would you have let die, if you weren't willing to undertake those interrogations?"
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