Former Vice President Dick Cheney embraced his Darth Vader persona in a recent interview with CBS, arguing that politicians with “warmth and friendliness and so forth” could not protect the country.
CBS Sunday Morning took a break from its special coverage of the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina on Sunday to give Dick Cheney and his daughter, Liz, a chance to promote their new book, Exceptional: Why the World Needs a Powerful America, which is being published by a division of CBS.
“First of all, it wasn’t torture,” Dick Cheney said of waterboarding. “It was the most significant source of intelligence for us that we absolutely had to have, and that was on al Qaeda, how big they were, where they were, who their leaders were, what their plans were, and so forth.”
According to the former vice president, he has no reason to apologize because he had not “sacrificed our values” by approving so-called enhanced interrogation techniques.
“If you’re just nothing but warmth and friendliness and so forth, you seriously can’t deal with the kinds of issues I’ve had to deal with over the years, and that I wanted to deal with,” he insisted. “It’s almost, I think, if you are criticism-free, then you’re probably not doing your job.”
As for the Iraq war, Dick Cheney said that he wouldn’t change a thing.
“There was widespread support at the time, and it was justified,” he said. “I’m well known as somebody who has strongly defended that as the right thing to do. And I still believe that.”
Liz Cheney remarked that no one had been “more courageous and dedicated and honorable” that her father.
“I know, for all of us who love you, the gratitude as Americans that we feel, is matched only by our love for him,” she said turning to her dad.
The younger Cheney noted that her father even accepted his “Dark Side” persona by sporting a Darth Vader hitch cover on his oversized Ford F-350 truck.
“I don’t know who put it on, I haven’t found out yet!” Dick Cheney confirmed. “You have to have a sense of humor about the business.”
Watch the video below from CBS’ CBS Sunday Morning, broadcast Aug. 30, 2015.