On Monday, Cheney struck a decidedly different tone.
The life and death of Osama bin Laden
Closing in on binLaden: See how the events unfolded
“I also want to congratulate President Obama and the members of his national security team,” Cheney said, after commending military and intelligenceprofessionals for the killing of Osama bin Laden.
Cheney was one of several officials from the George W. Bush administration who acknowledged that Obama had succeeded where they hadn’t in the frustrating,years-long hunt for bin Laden. Bush released a statement saying he had congratulated Obama during a phone call Sunday.
Yet members of the Bush administration — as well as Obama officials — said theprior administration deserved credit, too.
Without information from detainees at the Guantanamo Bay prison and elsewhere, U.S. officials would never have tracked the courier who led them to binLaden’s compound, they said. Much of the intelligence and logistical groundwork was also laid during the Bush era.
Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice called the killing of bin Laden “a tremendoustriumph.”
“It says to those that would harm us out there that it takes patience, but we keep working at these issues across administrations, across presidencies, and we will eventually get you,” shesaid in an interview.
The Obama administration took office strongly opposed to aspects of the Bush administration’s anti-terrorism policy, vowing to prohibit torture during interrogation and toclose the detention center at Guantanamo Bay. But under public and political pressure, the Obama team has backed off from shuttering Guantanamo.
Stephen J. Hadley, who was deputy national...