44 The Obama Presidency
Biden calls Cheney "absolutely wrong"
By Scott Wilson
Vice President Biden said Friday that his predecessor, Richard B. Cheney, is "absolutely wrong" in accusing President Obama of "dithering" over a decision to expand the war effort in Afghanistan.
"I think what the administration is doing is exactly what we said it would do, and what I think it warrants doing," Biden told reporters traveling with him aboard Air Force Two on his visit to Eastern Europe. "And that is making an informed judgment based upon circumstances that have changed... to come up with a sustainable policy that has more than one dimension."
Obama has been reviewing a request from Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, the commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, for tens of thousands of additional troops. He has said he expects to announce his decision in the coming weeks.
In a speech this week, Cheney suggested that Obama's timeline was jeopardizing the safety of the more than 60,000 U.S. soldiers and marines already in Afghanistan.
White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs responded that Cheney and other Bush administration officials allowed Afghanistan troop requests to sit for months during their last year in office.
Biden, who traveled in January to Afghanistan at Obama's request, said the policy review that the previous administration left for this one has been overtaken by events.
"A whole lot has changed in the last year," Biden said. "Let's assume they left us a review that was absolutely correct. Is that review relevant and totally applicable to today in light of the changes that have taken place in the region, in Afghanistan itself? So I think that is sort of irrelevant. Not sort of - I think it's irrelevant."
Posted at 8:30 PM ET on Oct 23, 2009
44 The Obama Presidency
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