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Powell: Cheney's Taking 'Cheap Shots'

Colin Powell isn't a fan of Dick Cheney's new memoir.

On CBS News' Face the Nation this weekend, former Bush administration secretary of state Powell said that Bush-era vice president Cheney takes some "cheap shots" and "overshot the runway" in the book that goes on sale this week.

As we reported last Thursday, according to The New York Times Cheney "divulges a number of conflicts with others in the inner circle," including then-CIA Director George Tenet and Bush's two secretaries of state, Powell and Condoleezza Rice.

And in an interview with ABC News last week, Cheney predicted that "heads are going to be exploding all over Washington" as the book — In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir — gets read.

Powell took exception to Cheney's rhetorical flourish:

"That's quite a visual. And in fact, it's the kind of headline I would expect to come out of a gossip columnist, or the kind of headline you might see one of the supermarket tabloids write. It's not the kind of headline I would have expected to come from a former Vice President of the United States of America."

The former secretary of state also said Cheney's wrong to imply that Powell didn't always fully brief President George W. Bush. "Mr. Cheney may forget that I'm the one who said to President Bush, 'If you break it you own it,' " Powell said, referring to his pre-Iraq War advice to the president.

Powell, a Republican, endorsed Democrat Barack Obama during the 2008 presidential campaign. He said on Face the Nation that he hasn't decided yet if he will vote for Obama in 2012. There are, he added, "some interesting candidates" on the Republican side. (More on those comments over at It's All Politics.)

Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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