Skip to comments.Hagel, Obama and Iran
Posted on 02/22/2013 12:40:58 PM PST by Servant of the Cross
Hagels nomination proves the president isnt serious about preventing a nuclear Iran.
Does it matter that a nominee for secretary of defense doesnt particularly care for American power?
Speaking to the Center for Strategic and International Studies in 2007, Senator Chuck Hagel revealed the kind of prejudices regarding American military strength most frequently found in the pages of the The Nation or among protesters at Occupy rallies. Distancing himself from Republicans he regarded as too bellicose, Hagel said,
This is a familiar leftist critique of America, a pseudo-psychological analysis of our foreign policy as a form of pathology. For a certain set of people, the problems in the world are never Soviet aggression and expansionism, communist repression and adventurism, or Islamic radicalism and terror. No, the problem is always Americas neurotic need to throw its weight around, alienating benign foreign powers and creating discord and trouble.
Whereas fair-minded people the world over consider the Islamic Republic of Iran to be a terror-sponsoring gangster regime, Senator Hagel described the Iranian regime at his confirmation hearing as an elected and legitimate government. A friendly Democratic senator later offered him an avenue for retreat, which he grabbed, saying, What I meant to say should have said its recognizable. What regime isnt recognizable?
What solicitous Democrats cannot obscure is that Senator Hagel has a long record of softness toward Iran. He voted against designating al-Quds a terrorist entity, advised direct negotiations with the mullahs, opposed sanctions, and suggested that a military response to Irans nuclear program is not a viable, feasible, responsible option. In a 2007 speech, he praised Irans cooperation with the U.S. in Afghanistan and noted that our two nations had found common interests. From these, Hagel continued, emerged common actions working toward a common purpose.
This is sheer fantasy disturbing enough in a U.S. senator but profoundly unsettling in a secretary of defense. Just two months before Hagel sprinkled these rhetorical rosebuds at the mullahs feet, an al-Quds force had attacked our forces in Karbala, Iraq. We were not at war with Iran (or not consciously). Time magazine reported the ambush:
The al-Quds terrorists had stolen all of the mens ID tags. Before dying, one of them had scrawled his name in the dust of the jeep.
Hagel is not worried about a nuclear Iran. In his 2008 book, he notes blithely that the genie of nuclear weapons is already out of the bottle no matter what Iran does. In that same year, Hagel proposed that the State Department open an interests section in Tehran.
Before the Hagel nomination, we lived with the polite fiction that President Obama was determined to prevent Iran from gaining nuclear weapons. The president has reiterated this position consistently since 2007. Mr. Hagel demonstrated confusion about it during his confirmation hearing, mumbling that we have no position on containment. For clarity, Senator Carl Levin (another helpful Democrat) corrected Hagel. We do have a position on containment, and that is we do not favor containment.
As recently as last September, President Obama said, Make no mistake: A nuclear-armed Iran is not a challenge that can be contained. . . . The United States will do what we must to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.
But who can take that boilerplate seriously now? The president has nominated a man for defense secretary who warms the heart of the terror regime in Tehran, a man who despises U.S. power, a man who opposed not just military action but even sanctions against Iran. That the president refuses to withdraw this nomination makes nonsense of his repeated pledges to thwart Irans nuclear ambitions. If ever a nomination were filibuster-worthy, this is it.
“Hagel, Obama and Iran” he gives as the answer.
“Hagel, Obama and Iran” repeats Ed McMahon.
Opening the envelope Carnac reads the question:
“What is an ass head, a gives head and a bunch of crazy rag heads?”