What Cheney conveniently neglects to mention is that Halliburton evaded U.S. law in order to deal with Iran. The International Emergency Economic Powers Act authorizes the president to block transactions and freeze assets to deal with rogue nations. In 1995, President Clinton signed an executive order barring U.S. investment in Iran’s energy sector. To evade U.S. law, Halliburton set up an offshore subsidiary that engaged in dealings with Iran.
Q: You opposed unilateral sanctions on Iran when you were CEO of Halliburton.
THE VICE PRESIDENT: I did. […] That’s a whole set of considerations that a CEO doesn’t have to worry about, that a private company doesn’t have to worry about. But the President of the United States does.
In 1996, Cheney blasted the Clinton administration for being “sanction-happy as a government.” “The problem is that the good Lord didn’t see fit to always put oil and gas resources where there are democratic governments,” Cheney explained of his desire to do business with Iran.
ABC’s Sam Donaldson confronted Cheney about this in 2000, only to hear Cheney obfuscate about his dealings with Iran:
Cheney’s evasion of U.S. law to deal with Iran has been well-documented. As the Bush administration now presses for tougher sanctions against Iran, Cheney should concede that Halliburton violated the spirit of the law and encourage other U.S. companies not to follow his lead.
DONALDSON: I’m told, and correct me if I’m wrong, that Halliburton through subsidiary companies was actually trying to do business with Iraq.
CHENEY: No. No, I had a firm policy that we wouldn’t do anything in Iraq, even
arrangements that were supposedly legal. What we do with respect to Iran and Libya is done through foreign subsidiaries totally in compliance with U.S. law.
DONALDSON: Make a way around U.S. law?
CHENEY: No, no, it’s provided for us specifically with respect to Iran and Libya. Iraq’s different, but we’ve not done any business in Iraq since the sanctions were imposed, and I had a standing policy that I wouldn’t do that.
LSB: I hate to wish anyone ill-will, but it would be a wonderful thing if his doctor's advised him to step down... not that he'd give up the mantel of power and the strings to his puppet-President.