Hagel and Obama In Sync

By Breeanne Howe

President Obama’s selection of former Nebraska Republican Senator Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense has been controversial since Hagel’s name was first suggested.  He is so known for his anti-Israel and anti-gay stances that even Democrats have had a difficult time defending Obama’s choice.  On Monday, Jay Carney attempted to explain the Hagel nomination by lying about his voting record and glossing over a question concerning Hagel’s previous extreme statements.  Said Carney:

Senator Hagel has been a staunch supporter of Israel, of the Israeli-American relationship, of the United States’ support for Israel’s security throughout his career. And he has also been, as demonstrated by his record, a supporter of the broad sanctions regime that this President has put into place against Iran…

I think that Senator Hagel’s record on those issues and so many others demonstrate that he is in sync with the President’s policies.

In reality, Hagel has a long history of critical actions and comments against Israel.  As recently as 2009, he stated that Israeli should, “withdrawal from all land occupied since 1967,” and accept, “a Palestinian state with east Jerusalem as its capital.”  On the issue of Iran sanctions, Hagel was referred to as being, “solely responsible” for blocking a then Senator Obama-sponsored bill that would have furthered sanctions against the country.

For all the objections to the Hagel appointment, one of the few supportive statements may be the most damaging for President Obama’s proposed Secretary of Defense.  In their report of the news, Iran’s Press TV said:

All signs indicate that U.S. President Barack Obama is poised to nominate anti-Israel ex-Senator Chuck Hagel as the next defense secretary soon…

Many pro-Israeli groups and neo-conservatives have spouted diatribe against Hagel over his criticism of Washington’s anti-Iran policies and Israel’s sway over the U.S. political arena.

Of course, considering Obama’s previous statements concerning Israel, perhaps Hagel is in sync with the President after all.