Full Interview: Dick Cheney on Iraq

VP: -- is a problem. But you got to remember what happened in Afghanistan that it is relevant to Iraq and that is that after we been engaged in Afghanistan in the 80's support the Mucha Hadin against the Soviets. That was a successful policy then everybody walked away. And what you got in Afghanistan was a civil war, the Taliban and the emergence of Osama Bin Laden in 1996 when he moved into Afghanistan, set up training camps and trained thousands of terrorists, some of which came and killed 3,000 Americans in 9-11. Now when I hear my friends in the states, candidates and so forth, wannabees, announce that they want to take our forces and withdrawal, I say that is exactly what happened in Afghanistan that produced a safe haven that generated the groups of terrorist that killed 3,000 Americans. We don't have the luxury of saying we don't care what happens in Iraq, we don't care what happens in Afghanistan, we have to be engaged in that part of the world. We have got to work with others so they can control their own sovereign territory, but the idea that we can walk away from Iraq, is I think a terribly damaging on its face and to say that's the only way we can get the Iraqis to take on responsibility, I don't believe that's the case. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have stood up along side us, enlisted in their security services, have run in elections, have taken on responsible post. Been threatened with assassination and car bombs operated under very difficult circumstances.

ABC: So a candidate who believes in that you believe would be putting the homeland at risk?

VP: I do and it is seriously, seriously misguided. And a belief that we can some how walk away from Iraq and it won't happen --

ABC: You are talking about Barack Obama here?

VP: I am talking about any candidate for my office that believe in a solution for that part of the world is to walk away from the commitments that we have made in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere.

ABC: Okay, a couple of questions the the kind you don't like and that is talking about yourself and looking at yourself as vice president and the impact you have had as vice president and the way some people view you. Can you talk about that a little bit and your impact. You have been without question one of the most power vice presidents in history, you were talking about that a bit today and how you view that in the next vice president.

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