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Chuck Hagel and the Arrogance of Washington

Posted by Steve Markowitz on February 4, 2013

The arrogance that is a trademark of Washington politicians was on full display last week during the confirmation hearing for Defense Secretary of Chuck Hagel.  Hagel is known for bizarre in hard Left views on foreign policy.  This includes his unwillingness to support unilateral sanctions against Iran, an unwillingness to call Iran’s Revolutionary guard a terrorist organization, and his historical stances against Israel.

chuck_hagelDuring the hearing Hagel apologized for comments made while a senator about the so-called “Jewish lobby”. An apology is not at issue or required.  Instead, it is the intent behind these words that are troubling.

In addition, Hagel was a strong opponent of the 2006 Iraqi war surge that ultimately led to a significant downturn in violence in that country and paved the way for the United States to withdraw its troops from that country.  It was on this issue that Sen. John McCain questioned Hagel, leading to the following exchange:

McCain – “Were you correct or incorrect when you said that the surge would be the most dangerous foreign policy blunder … since Vietnam?”

Hagel – “It’s far more complicated than that space… My answer is, I’ll defer that judgment to history.”

Hagel’s unwillingness to answer a straightforward question led to McCain conclude: “I think history has already made a judgment about the surge, sir, and you’re on the wrong side of it. And your refusal to answer whether you were right or wrong about it is going to have an impact on my judgment as to whether vote for your confirmation or not.”

Also telling is that while Senator Hagel was a vocal critic of the Bush Administration’s Iraqi surge strategy, he has been less vocal in criticism of Pres. Obama’s Afghan war surge.  Now, he seeks to go to work for the man behind that more contemporary surge strategy.

In typical Obama fashion, the President presents the nominally Republican Hagel as a supposed positive gesture to the Right.  In fact, it is the opposite with Hagel being just another left-wing wingback that happens to have an “R” behind his name.

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