Sunday, January 06, 2013

Hagel Problems

McClatchy tells us some of what the GOP has against Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense.
Critics have pointed to a comment Hagel made in 2008 to author and former State Department Middle East peace negotiator Aaron David Miller about why he sometimes opposed pro-Israel groups in the Senate. "The Jewish lobby intimidates a lot of people up here," Hagel said, but "I'm a United States senator. I'm not an Israeli senator." They also have cited his calls for direct negotiations with Hamas, the Palestinian militant group that the U.S. and Israel refuse to deal with directly, and his votes against some Iran sanctions.
Now the idea that somebody would consider themselves a United States Senator before a shill for Israel is an odd reason for an American Senator to get his knickers in a twist. I can't think of a single nation on earth, now or in the past, that makes no mistakes, even Exceptional USA. The idea that none of Israel's actions are above reproach or even being questioned strikes me as ludicrous. If I don't have a lot of company in that regard then we need Israel as a 51st State so we can kick them around a bit.

The Middle East can certainly bring people to the point of stupidity pretty quickly. If people have guns and bombs that they're using and you decide you can't talk to them, then the only thing that is going to happen is that the use is going to continue until they're extinct.

I'd be willing to bet that the real core to the GOPering of Hagel has to do with him changing his mind in regard to Iraq and by extension kicking the GOP and GWB. That is something that will get any partisan's back up - well at least someone blindly partisan.  Don't expect me to have much nice to say about people whose willing blindness allowed GWB to waltz us into Iraq. 

There are some Democrats with reservations thanks to some things Hagel has had to say. All I really have to say on that regard is that anybody whose spent much of their life talking about politics has probably got some things they'd rather not have said.  This is not a Judicial appointment for life, in a few years he's gone, short of another appointment.  In that regard it is important to remember that these folks are not out there on their own - they work for the President of the US.

Now I don't particularly like Hagel nor do I particularly dislike him. It seems to me that short of some legal problem the President should get who he wants without high drama. I'm pretty confident that the guy has been vetted. What the GOP needs to come to terms with is that Barack Obama has been twice elected President and that is just about all there is to that. Consistently playing obstructionist in the face of that fact in regard to such appointments is childish in the extreme. No, I haven't forgotten who I'm talking about...

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