Former vice-president Mr. Richard "would do it again in a trice" Cheney has come forward to exonerate CIA "enhanced interrogation" tactics first used during the Bush administration.
America must be defended, according to Mr. Cheney, no matter what the cost to American values.
Mr. Cheney joins Mr. Michael Hayden in deploring Senator Feinstein's recent comments on torture as "emotionalism."
According to a spokesperson for Mr. Cheney and Mr. Hayden when it comes to national security emotions are irrelevant and should not influence policy.
Mr. Hayden opined that likely Ms. Feinstein and her committee were having a bad hair day and allowing their feelings to run riot on a matter of national security.
For Mr. Cheney "enhanced interrogation" such as water boarding, stress positions, forced nudity, and sleep deprivation are necessary tools.
Mr. Cheney has said: "Some people call it torture. It wasn't torture. We were very careful in all respects to abide by the law."
Whether these tactics provided actionable intelligence, however, has not been shown.
A spokesman for Mr. Cheney reiterated that emotions are irrelevant. The only emotion is called patriotism, defined as, "My country, right or wrong."
In contrast, Ms. Feinstein and her committee found the enhanced interrogation tactics exposed by The Panetta Review to be "brutality that stands in sharp contrast to our values as a nation. It chronicles a stain on our history that should not be allowed to happen again. This is not what Americans do."
She also said it is important to "ensure that an un-American, brutal program of detention and interrogation will never again be considered or permitted."
For Mr. Hayden and Mr. Cheney, the words "un-American," "brutal," and "never again considered or permitted" are examples of Ms. Feinstein's emotionally over-stating the case.
The White House is reported considering the appointment of a committee to study and issue a report on what is "American" versus "un-American."
The committee would consider a range of actions from "enhanced interrogation" to "regime change" and clandestine stealth operations to de-stabilize foreign governments the US does not agree with.
Candidates for the committee so far named are Senator McCain, Mr. Jamie Dimon of J.P. Morgan Chase, presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, and representative of the fourth estate, Mr. Rupert Murdoch.
Mr. Obama is considering Vice President Biden or possibly Justice Scalia to chair the committee.