Opinion writer

Regrets? Dick Cheney had few to mention.

The former vice president’s memoir, “In My Time,” is 576 pages long, but the word “regret” and its variations appear only six times – in each instance to express Cheney’s regret over something that somebody else did, or didn’t do. As in: “I thought Senator Obama’s views in these areas were misguided, and I regretted that no one was making the argument on the other side.”

Dana Milbank writes about political theater in the nation’s capital. He joined the Post as a political reporter in 2000. View Archive

For those who lack the time to read the vice president’s entire sanitization of the Bush record (“He had been a visceral and forthright commander, a president who strengthened all of us with his conviction.”), here are some actual excerpts from “In My Time” that will give you the gist of it. Consider these the CliffsNotes to an unapologetic apologia.

“It was exactly the right call.”

“It was the right decision.”

“It was clearly the right decision.”

“He was right.”

“And time would show that he was right.”

“‘Mr. President,’ I said, ‘you were right.’”

“And he was right.”

“Addington was an ideal choice.”

“Petraeus was a superb choice.”

“Jim was right.”

“Secretary Gates got it right.”

“She was exactly right.”

“Exactly right.”

“The plan was the right one.”

“The decision was the right one.”

“President Bush’s decision to abrogate the ABM Treaty was exactly the right thing to do.”

“The president had been right when he had denounced the failed approach of the Clinton era.”

“We knew that military commissions were the right place for these trials.”

“She came into my office, sat down in the chair next to my desk, and tearfully admitted I had been right.”

“Pardons were the right thing.”

“They did the right thing.”

“We were on the right course.”

“I was unfortunately accurate in my assessment.”

“Contrary to subsequent assertions by war critics, my assessment had been on target. ”

“I believe our intervention in the financial sector was justified.”

“With the benefit of hindsight — even taking into account that some of the intelligence we received was wrong -- that assessment still holds true.”

“It is a model facility. . . . It’s not Guantanamo that does the harm, it is the critics of the facility who peddle falsehoods about it.”

“I wouldn’t have traded my years as secretary of defense for anything.”

“My critics continued to make false claims.”

“I think they were hoping for a kinder, gentler Dick Cheney, and I listened to what they had to say, and then I ignored their advice. And to this day I am glad I did.”

“I had no doubt.”