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Hello again and a happy Father's Day from Fox News and watching -- For much of the eight years Dick Cheney was a heart -- from the presidency.
He was -- driving force behind increase government surveillance as part of the war on terror.
And the next segment we'll ask the former vice president about the changing US policy on Syria and the Obama administration scandals.
But we want to begin by discussing the revelations about sweeping NSA data collection.
And the renewed debate about whether it's an invasion of our privacy Vice President Cheney.
Welcome back to Fox News it's going to be back Chris.
Let's start with Edwards note -- the 29 year old private contractor who disclosed these programs to the world here is how we -- -- actions.
Well -- you realize that.
These things need to be determined by the public not by somebody who recently hired by the government when you are subverting the power of government that that's a fundamentally dangerous thing to democracy.
What do you think about where it's an open.
I think he has.
Committed crimes in fact and I -- violating our agreements.
Given the position and he was a contractor employed but he obviously been granted -- tough secret clearance.
And I think it's one of the worst occasions in my memory.
Somebody with access classified information to an enormous damage to national security interest of the United States.
We believe believe this -- is still in Hong Kong and apparently giving the Chinese.
Information about alleged US cyber hacking into Chinese computers couple of questions.
-- that he was a spy all along for the Chinese -- -- think he's using this information to try to by.
Asylum from the Chinese.
And how firm should the US government -- with the Chinese about turning this guy back to.
Yes well I'm deeply suspicious obviously because it went trying to that's not a place where -- inordinate ordinarily wanna go here and -- freedom liberty and so forth.
Com to it raises questions whether or not he had that kind of connection.
Before he did this the other concern I have is whether or not he had help from inside the agency that is -- say.
Was there somebody else in SA NSA who had access to a lot of this stuff and -- To him.
That's presumably -- of things and look at courses -- investigation.
That I AM.
I am very very worried that he still has an additional information as -- released yet.
That the Chinese would welcome the opportunity.
And probably willing.
Provide immunity for him more sanctuary for -- if you -- in exchange for when he presumably knows -- doesn't.
So if it's going to be a continuing problem I don't think this is just a one off disclosure.
I think it's a real danger here that -- go beyond that night I have trouble believing that somebody in his position.
As contract employee had access to the kind of things he's talking about -- that he was acting alone I don't know -- -- -- ask questions.
Now what about the US Chinese relationship we saw President Obama on meet with president she last weekend -- out in Palm Springs supposedly trying to.
-- build -- relationship how much should we put that relationship on the line to demand that they turn.
Snowden back to.
Well I think.
I think you need to be very aggressive about it I'm not sure it'll do good.
It depends obviously on whether or not Chinese believe he still has value from an intelligence standpoint.
I've got to believe they'll work that angle first before -- -- them signature -- Since the leaks.
There -- been a lot of criticism of the NSA program from both the lot right on the left I wanna focus on conservatives though.
People like senator Rand Paul who say fine -- the government target terrorists.
But leave law abiding Americans alone take a look.
This is what we objected to.
What our founding fathers partly fought the revolution over.
Is they did not want to generalize warrants -- -- go from house to house was soldiers looking for things or now from computer to computer to phone -- phone.
Without specifying who -- -- targeting.
Question is senator Paul wrong.
I believe he has -- -- Two thirds of the congress today.
Chris wasn't here on 9/11 for that period immediately after when we got into this program and the reason we got into it was because we've been.
And -- so worst attack on Pearl Harbor nineteen guys armed with box cutters and airline tickets.
The worry is that the next attack in the -- expected -- in the expected and I expect -- sooner or later -- there's going to be another attack.
And they'll have different weapons than ever before that we've got to consider the possibility of a nuclear device or biological agent.
-- we made the decision based on nine elevenths that we no longer -- a law enforcement parliament where war.
And congress in fact authorize this the president to use military force to deal with the crisis and that -- -- over into the the category being able to use all of you military -- your intelligence assets and so forth in order to protect the country against another attack.
And when you consider the possibility of somebody smuggling something like a nuclear device into the United States.
It becomes -- very very important gather intelligence on your enemies and stop that attack before every slot.
Let's -- the specific question that front Rand Paul and a lot of other people on both the right no laughter who are raising a sense fine.
If you find the bad guys you -- reason to suspect them go after their numbers go after their emails but why do you have to vacuum up information.
Law abiding American in the country.
First what information.
And answer -- phone numbers.
And who contacted -- but we don't have names associated with the -- -- big bag of numbers that have been collected.
And -- -- -- -- an interest well I don't believe it is in fact that's how private information -- Supreme Court those are business records of the telephone company.
You don't go into that.
Box of numbers if you will live to look for connections unless you.
Pricked up someplace suspicious numbers capture college it -- Karachi or bin Laden and and about a body in Pakistan and you look at their cellphones a look at their Rolodex in -- and see what numbers there.
Had connections back into the United States and by preserving that database you're able to come back and check and see if they've been talking -- somebody inside.
As everybody's been associated programs said we have had this before nine elevenths when there were two terrorists -- in San Diego two hijackers.
And been able to use that program that capability against that target we might well have been able to prevent nine elevenths so we're not there.
The allegation is out -- that somehow we've gotten all this personal information on him Fannie or Chris Wallace or whoever might be.
And we're poring through it not true that's not the way it works.
It's been explained by Mike Hayden who was involvement.
I Keith Alexander is superb guys both of them who's now running program.
That we have collected a lot of numbers but they -- business records and phone companies.
They have been determined by the Supreme Court not to be private individual records the way.
Scrapbook -- so -- let's assume that's right now the question is being asked why does all of this have to be capped.
So secret that the terrorists clearly -- were trying today intercept their phone calls and intercept their emails so.
Why not let the American public know the the outlines the general problem obviously not sources and methods and how you -- win.
And the algorithms and all -- but the blueprint the general out on a program so we as Americans can debate it.
I have problems.
With with respect -- that concern I understand.
People's concern about it.
But -- and intelligence program that does reveal sources and methods which in fact this what you're talking about.
-- significantly less effective because you're not just revealing it to the American people here revealing and it your targets your adversaries to the enemy.
There are reasons for secrecy in the conduct of intelligence operations and we set this program up.
That -- the weeks after awhile.
We briefed certain members of congress chairman ranking member of the Intelligence Committees that we did at my office in the west -- Mike -- -- -- George Tenet I was there.
And we've given them lay out of what we were doing and what we were running from it.
Eventually we did it for the elected leadership -- -- -- both parties both houses.
So we had senior officials in the congress and eventually of a slew of -- courts who were read into the program knew what we -- -- and had an effect signed off on I want to ask.
A collective group the big nine and spring of 04.
And then briefing -- first we briefed -- And said do you think we ought to continue the program makes it absolutely yes and -- -- do you think will come back to the congress and get additional legislative authorization they should absolutely not the bleak.
Those with a senior leaders in congress at the time.
So what right do you think American the American people -- to know.
What government is still well they get -- excuse me they get to vote for senior officials like the president of the United States or like this senior officials and congress.
And you have to have some trust in them.
You don't go out when he -- happiness and intelligence operation trying to collect data and in effect only enemy what you're doing.
It is just -- it would be a dumb idea.
It makes the program significantly less effective and reveals to -- our adversaries crucial information that they -- man.
All right well let me ask about that because top US intelligence.
Officials how release more information.
To try to explain and defend -- programs that -- that Saturday let's put some of that up on the screen.
They say -- -- from these programs help break up terror plots.
In the US and twenty other countries last year they say fewer than 300 phone numbers were checked against the huge database.
And that all the data.
Is destroyed every five years.
Given the -- given that information do you think that provides useful information to our enemies.
Well I think it does amendment we've now laid out of they have no choice and I don't -- with what they're now putting out.
They're forced to put it out because.
An individual in this case snowed took it upon himself.
To decide the United States no longer needed to maintain this secret.
He cannot he can't operate to play it just doesn't function I mean if you think about what we're able to do in World War II we're reading now Alter.
-- Communication vital -- our success of that venture.
-- analysis to the world.
Could have had this kind of debate but obviously it would have destroyed the ability to collect your telling.
Your adversary about your sources and methods and out -- were reading their mail -- the same thing is true here.
What's different now is the threat the threat now isn't just overseas or just a foreign power.
The threat now it is terrorist coming back into the United States using deadlier weapons than ever before to launch an attack.
We have to know what they're doing we need to know who they're in contact with here in the United States and with this program allows us to do in the reasonably set up in the way it's been operated.
Was when we went to Karachi and captured -- -- Mohammed we could get his Rolodex and see who he was talking to inside the United States.
When he had -- two guys and San Diego who -- feature hijackers on nine elevenths.
They were in contact overseas with their leadership overseas as well with some of the rest of the organization's -- if we've been able to read their mail and intercept those communications.
And pick up from the calls overseas in the numbers here that there reason in the United States we would have probably been able to thwart that attack.
Back when he was running for president in 2008 Barack Obama talked about what he called false choice between liberty and security.
And when this program was revealed last week he said well -- robbed a lot of what I inherited.
From you let's take -- -- -- -- Where -- helping skepticism bouts these programs.
My team evaluated them we scrubbed them early we actually expanded some of the oversight.
Increase some of the safeguards.
How much as President Obama scrubbed.
What you guys gave.
I can't I don't know I mean obviously have not been in the loop on classified information to -- -- the White House.
Yes -- one of the keys for me Chris is I know.
He's one of the finest there's a national security -- -- the National Security Agency now in charge of the program I know Mike -- very well he was his predecessor.
-- later became CIA director I worked with Mike Hayden when we set this program up.
He came to me and then he and George Tenet and -- said -- -- That there were additional things we could gather if we had more authority.
And I took him to the president and he signed off on with some very strict limitations and restrictions on what we could do.
These men are -- Officers as you're gonna find any place in the states military and I met a lot of them over the years.
I trust these guys implicitly with with my life so so and -- look what I make of what they're saying is.
They are to be believe they're good honest Americans are patriotic.
But they also care very much about the responsibility to safeguard civil liberties but what I'm asking you what do you make them out of the president suggesting.
Well I had to scrub up with these guys -- I I don't pay a lot of attention frankly to what Barack Obama -- -- -- a lot of its.
In other areas for example -- bad guys -- not credible.
I'm obviously not a fan.
The incumbent president I don't know what he did.
That program obviously from what's now been released is still in operation I think it's a good.
That it's an operation I think it has in fact saved lives in this -- Kept us free from other attacks.
-- last question in this area.
Some critics say there's a disconnect between the president defending this vast surveillance as he has since it was revealed.
And his recent remarks in which he seemed to indicate that the war on terror is winding down -- Our systematic effort to dismantle terrorist organizations must continue but this war.
Like all -- -- -- A couple of questions first of all what do you think of the president suggesting.
Where we are now in the war on terror and as he put it -- to cross roads and doesn't make it harder to justify this now surveillance.
If the war on terror is -- Well first of all is wrong it's not want if you look at that -- part of the world now that's available to us.
Safe harbor sanctuary for terrorists to plan and train and launch attacks against the United States it now runs all across North Africa.
All those places that the for example the Muslim Brotherhood come to power.
So the threats bigger than ever the problem we've got as the proliferation of nuclear weapons.
And weapons of mass destruction today were all concerned about Syria take away the problem would be if the North Korean built nuclear reactor.
We're still in Syria and hadn't been destroyed by the Israeli six years ago we have a huge mess on our hands with problem from the standpoint of -- -- Bin Laden may be dead but we've got al-Qaeda and a lot of al-Qaeda wannabes and al-Qaeda affiliates out there operating Ben -- is proof positive that al-Qaeda is operating.
In this case in Libya so he's just dead wrong on the status of the threat.
In terms of credibility I don't think he has -- -- and one of the biggest problems we have is we've got an important point where.
The president of the United States ought to be able to stand up -- this isn't right this program it's a good program -- save American lives and I support it.
And the problem is that guy has failed to be forthright and honest and credible and things like -- Gaza in the IRS so he's got no credibility.
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