Cheney Yes, Brzezinski No

Stephen Hayes tells us why we need more, not less, Dick Cheney.

An excerpt:

To many, the threats [of terrorist attack in America] no longer seem urgent. Critics speak of “the so-called war on terror,” and accuse the administration of exaggerating the threats. Zbigniew Brzezinski, a leading indicator of Democratic conventional wisdom, recently argued that the “culture of fear” created in response to the 9/11 attacks has done more damage than the attacks themselves.

But Mr. Cheney has not moved on. He still awakens each day asking the same questions he asked on Sept. 12, 2001. Then, as he sips his morning coffee, he pores over the latest intelligence on his own before receiving an exhaustive briefing on the latest threat reports. After that, he joins his boss for the president’s daily intelligence briefing. All of this happens before 9 a.m. He mentions the war on terror in virtually every speech he gives, and in a letter he wrote to his grandchildren he acknowledged that his “principal focus” as vice president has been national security.

The way that he has gone about his job has won him many critics. His approval ratings are low. A small but growing group of congressional Democrats is mobilizing to impeach him. Respected commentators from respected publications have suggested that his heart problems have left him mentally unstable. Others have called on him to resign. Some conservatives have joined this chorus of criticism, with one prominent columnist labeling the vice president “destructive” and another dismissing those who share his views as “Cheneyite nutjobs.” This past Saturday, protesters near his home outside Jackson, Wyo., tore down an effigy of Mr. Cheney in much the way Iraqis famously toppled the statue of Saddam Hussein.

So President Bush should ignore Mr. Cheney’s advice and the White House communications team should keep him hidden from public view, right?

Nonsense. With intelligence officials in Washington increasingly alarmed about the prospect of another major attack on the U.S. homeland, and public support for the Bush administration’s anti-terror efforts reclaiming lost ground, we need more Dick Cheney.

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