Former Vice President Cheney Makes Forceful Defense
“I think he’s a traitor. I think he has committed crimes,” former Vice President Dick Cheney said about Edward Snowden, the man who took privileged intelligence and leaked it to the press.
Cheney added that he is suspicious about Snowden's connections to China, and he is worried about what information Snowden might have not yet revealed.
Snowden's leak has brought to the fore a debate about the limits to lawful surveillance and how they measure up to Americans' rights. Kentucky Senator Rand Paul (R), along with several other members of Congress, say they believe the programs encroach on the 4th amendment rights of U.S. citizens.
Cheney, who as vice president in the aftermath of 9/11was central to the development of some of these programs, said he thinks Paul is wrong.
“We made a decision based on 9/11 that we no longer had a law enforcement problem, that we were at war,” Cheney said in defense of the heightened surveillance.
Cheney also echoed what top officials have testified to on Capitol Hill this past week, that prior to 9/11, had the government had these tools, communications between the attackers might have been intercepted and raised the alarm.