Sean Hannity advanced Liz Cheney's baseless suggestion that U.S. military personnel are administering Miranda warnings to detainees. In fact, the FBI -- not military personnel -- reportedly have been Mirandizing detainees in specific instances.
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On the June 23 edition of his Fox News show, Sean Hannity agreed with Liz Cheney's baseless suggestion that U.S. military personnel are administering Miranda warnings to detainees immediately upon capture. In fact, as Media Matters for America has previously noted, a June 10 Weekly Standard article about the issue reported that "the Obama Justice Department has quietly ordered FBI agents to read Miranda rights to high value detainees captured and held at U.S. detention facilities in Afghanistan." The article did not say that military personnel had been ordered to read Miranda rights to detainees. In addition, Fox News national security correspondent Jennifer Griffin has reported that FBI personnel, not military personnel, have read Miranda rights to detainees in select instances. In addition, the reading of Miranda warnings to detainees held in Afghanistan reportedly began during the Bush administration.
During a discussion about President Obama's foreign policy, Cheney claimed, "We're also now capturing guys on the battlefield, and the first thing we say to them is, 'You have the right to remain silent,' " which Hannity called "insane." Cheney then stated that "if what you're trying to do is get information, that's clearly not the way to do it." Hannity then said, "[W]e're going to Mirandize enemy combatants in a time of war," to which Cheney responded, "Yes."
However, as Media Matters has previously noted, on the June 10 edition of Fox News' Special Report, Griffin reported that "U.S. commanders tell Fox soldiers are not reading Miranda rights to detainees, but those commanders could not speak to the FBI doing so." Griffin also reported that Justice Department spokesman Dean Boyd stated that "[t]here has been no policy change nor blanket instruction issued for FBI agents to Mirandize detainees overseas" and that "there have been specific cases in which FBI agents have Mirandized suspects overseas at both Bagram and in other situations in order to preserve the quality of evidence."
In addition, the FBI reportedly began giving Miranda warnings to some detainees held in Afghanistan during the Bush administration. On the June 10 edition of Special Report, Weekly Standard senior writer Stephen Hayes, who wrote the June 10 Weekly Standard article that initially reported the claim by Rep. Mike Rogers (R-MI) that the Obama administration had ordered the Mirandizing of detainees, stated: "There are reports that this was happening on specific bases as going back as early as July 2008. But what Mike Rogers seems to be saying is that this is happening on a more consistent basis, and that the FBI and the Justice Department don't want to talk about it."
From the June 23 edition of Fox News' Hannity:
HANNITY: You know, first of all, are you as amazed as I am? Because I've always been a fan of your dad's. Your dad's 40 years in public service, secretary of defense, eight years during the toughest years for national security in this country. Your father speaks out, and it's like Alka Seltzer in water for the left in this country. They melt. Why do you think that is?
CHENEY: Well, I think partly because he's having a very positive impact, in terms of explaining to the American people why some of the policies that they kept in place for the last eight years were so important. And I think that the current administration would rather not have that argument be made as eloquently, as effectively, as my dad's making it.
HANNITY: Did you ever think we'd have -- not only are we not going to use enhanced interrogations, but we're not going to tell the American people how effective they were.
HANNITY: But yet, we're going to tell our enemies what techniques we used?
CHENEY: No, and I think, you know, still sitting here tonight they haven't released the memos that explain how effective the detainee program was. And I think the American people have a right to know that, and they have a right to see it. We're also now capturing guys on the battlefield, and the first thing we say to them is, "You have the right to remain silent."
HANNITY: It's insane.
CHENEY: Which is just, you know -- if what you're trying to do is get information, that's clearly not the way to do it.
HANNITY: Yeah, we're going to Mirandize enemy combatants in a time of war.
HANNITY: All right, I found, as I was saying earlier in the program today, I watched the president very closely. And I'm thinking this is not the same guy that was saying we're meddling in Iranian affairs, that it doesn't matter what the outcome is.
And I'm thinking Barack Obama, in typical fashion, basically punted. Barack Obama voted present.
HANNITY: And now he's trying to get in front of the, you know, curve here.