Cheney: 'I was wrong about insurgency'

July 31, 2007 at 5:22 PM
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WASHINGTON, July 31 (UPI) -- U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney Tuesday admitted he was wrong when he declared the Iraq insurgency virtually over in 2005.

In an interview with CNN's Larry King, Cheney said he thought at the time the capture of Saddam Hussein, elections and other milestones would be enough to undermine the insurgency.

"That clearly didn't happen," Cheney admitted. "I think the insurgency turned out to be more robust."

Cheney predicted, however, Iraq will be in a much better position by the time he and U.S. President George Bush leave office Jan. 20, 2009.

The vice president said he is opposed to closing the prison at Guantanamo Bay, saying, "you need to have someplace to hold those individuals who have been captured during the global war on terror."

Cheney also told CNN he doesn't care about whether he's well-liked and doesn't bear any grudges against Brent Scowcroft, who has said, "This is not the Dick Cheney I knew."

"If I were in the business to be popular, I suppose I'd be worried about my poll ratings and so forth. I'm not," said Cheney, adding he has no plans ever to run for office or seek another government post again. "I came here to do a job. I'm not running for any office, myself."

Cheney repeated in the CNN interview his assertion that the vice president is part of both the executive and legislative branches of government -- noting his paycheck comes from the Senate.

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