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Wed Jan 9, 2013, 04:10 PM

Will Chuck Hagel's Appointment Actually Help the Anti-War Left?

Published on Wednesday, January 9, 2013 by The Nation
Will Chuck Hagel's Appointment Actually Help the Anti-War Left?
by Phyllis Bennis

(Phyllis Bennis is a fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies. Her books include Understanding the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict: A Primer, Understanding the U.S.-Iran Crisis: A Primer, Ending the Iraq War: A Primer, and most recently Ending the Us War in Afghanistan: A Primer. If you want to receive her talking points and articles on a regular basis, click here and choose "New Internationalism.")

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And then there’s the Pentagon budget. Hagel has called it “bloated,” pretty amazing for a future secretary of defense. Obama may have felt that a decorated Republican military veteran would be the best choice to convince a Republican-controlled congress that some cuts will have to be made. There’s no way Hagel will argue the realities and consequences of the whole military budget—the impact on jobs and healthcare of the $111 billion we spent this year on a failed war in Afghanistan, the million dollars per year it costs to keep just one young soldier in Afghanistan and the fact that we could bring home that one soldier and have enough money to hire her and 19 more young former soldiers at good $50,000/year middle-class union jobs. He won’t argue that.

But still—a Pentagon chief who actually believes his agency’s budget should be cut—that’s new. And ultimately, that’s probably the most important reason for the attack dogs slavering for Hagel’s skin. The Washington Post editorialized that Hagel’s willingness to cut military spending was one of the key reasons to oppose his nomination. Behind the Post, of course, are the military producers and contractors whose CEOs fortunes stand (rarely fall) on the Pentagon’s budget.

Unfortunately, military cuts of the size we really need to rebuild the economy and make our country and the world truly safer—ending the Afghanistan war quickly and entirely, stopping the drone wars, moving towards complete nuclear disarmament, closing the 1,000 or so overseas military bases—will not be on the agenda of Chuck Hagel or anyone else at the Pentagon. But still. Better someone in charge who agrees that Pentagon spending is not sacrosanct than someone who views their role to keep every last billion dollars in military hands.

The Post editorial board went on to condemn Hagel’s politics overall. Most cross-party appointments, they said, “offer a veneer of bipartisanship to the national security team.” But Hagel would be different—he would not “move it toward the center, which is the usual role of such opposite-party nominees. On the contrary: Mr. Hagel’s stated positions on critical issues, ranging from defense spending to Iran, fall well to the left of those pursued by Mr. Obama during his first term—and place him near the fringe of the Senate.”

MORE and a Good Read at........

http://www.commondreams.org/view/2013/01/09-9

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Arrow 10 replies Author Time Post
Reply Will Chuck Hagel's Appointment Actually Help the Anti-War Left? (Original post)
KoKo Jan 2013 OP
KoKo Jan 2013 #1
TwilightGardener Jan 2013 #2
KoKo Jan 2013 #4
TwilightGardener Jan 2013 #5
KoKo Jan 2013 #6
TwilightGardener Jan 2013 #8
KoKo Jan 2013 #9
KoKo Jan 2013 #3
flamingdem Jan 2013 #7
KoKo Jan 2013 #10

Response to KoKo (Original post)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 09:15 PM

1. WILL IT?

What do YOU THINK?

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Response to KoKo (Reply #1)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 09:25 PM

2. I think that if some sort of military action is needed that will risk

the lives of Americans, or god forbid war with Iran, Obama will know that if he is on board with it, it is probably the right thing to do.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #2)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 09:41 PM

4. Who is the Judge of....."The Right Thing to Do...In War?" The People or the President?

So glib you are about this.. Do you have friends or family shipped off to these ENDLESS WARS? Do You?

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Response to KoKo (Reply #4)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 09:47 PM

5. I did for 20 years. My husband served in the middle east, repeatedly.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #5)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 10:21 PM

6. NGO, MILITARY, CIA, DIPLOMATIC?

If he was Basic Troops it would be good to know his experience and how that had an effect on your views.

Thanks!

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Response to KoKo (Reply #6)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 10:28 PM

8. He started off enlisted, eventually became an officer, and then retired.

Living under the Cheney/Rumsfeld regime sucked, for obvious reasons.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #8)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 10:39 PM

9. If he survived that..

and he felt he and you thought he came through it fine...then it's okay.

It's some others and the War without Proper Evidence that I can't go with. So...that's why I asked. I think these wars are good for some...and it's okay with them if they get through without being scarred..thinking they did good.

But, I come from a Vietnam Era perspective so my view is long and dark...so I'm what I am with my life experience.

Just so you know.

Thanks for your reply and glad that your partner isn't one scarred. I come from a scarred generation that won't ever forget...so there's that that I speak for. I am against wars that drain the treasure of our youth and take away from stuff we need to be doing to re-build our country rather than Wall Street Bubbles and Profiteering from the Military Industrial Complex. So...I'm kind of hardline on that stuff.

Peace & regards for your reply from your personal experience! So many on DU don't bother to explain where they come from on issues that we differ on. Thanks for doing that.

Peace,
KoKo

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Response to KoKo (Original post)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 09:38 PM

3. Chuck Hagel is the best we can hope for right now from this President...more...

that I posted today from Common Dreams on him...I gotta hope they are correct on this as "best we can get."
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Will Chuck Hagel's Appointment Actually Help the Anti-War Left?
Published on Wednesday, January 9, 2013 by The Nation
Will Chuck Hagel's Appointment Actually Help the Anti-War Left?
by Phyllis Bennis

(Phyllis Bennis is a fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies. Her books include Understanding the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict: A Primer, Understanding the U.S.-Iran Crisis: A Primer, Ending the Iraq War: A Primer, and most recently Ending the Us War in Afghanistan: A Primer. If you want to receive her talking points and articles on a regular basis, click here and choose "New Internationalism.")

--------------

And then there’s the Pentagon budget. Hagel has called it “bloated,” pretty amazing for a future secretary of defense. Obama may have felt that a decorated Republican military veteran would be the best choice to convince a Republican-controlled congress that some cuts will have to be made. There’s no way Hagel will argue the realities and consequences of the whole military budget—the impact on jobs and healthcare of the $111 billion we spent this year on a failed war in Afghanistan, the million dollars per year it costs to keep just one young soldier in Afghanistan and the fact that we could bring home that one soldier and have enough money to hire her and 19 more young former soldiers at good $50,000/year middle-class union jobs. He won’t argue that.

But still—a Pentagon chief who actually believes his agency’s budget should be cut—that’s new. And ultimately, that’s probably the most important reason for the attack dogs slavering for Hagel’s skin. The Washington Post editorialized that Hagel’s willingness to cut military spending was one of the key reasons to oppose his nomination. Behind the Post, of course, are the military producers and contractors whose CEOs fortunes stand (rarely fall) on the Pentagon’s budget.

Unfortunately, military cuts of the size we really need to rebuild the economy and make our country and the world truly safer—ending the Afghanistan war quickly and entirely, stopping the drone wars, moving towards complete nuclear disarmament, closing the 1,000 or so overseas military bases—will not be on the agenda of Chuck Hagel or anyone else at the Pentagon. But still. Better someone in charge who agrees that Pentagon spending is not sacrosanct than someone who views their role to keep every last billion dollars in military hands.

The Post editorial board went on to condemn Hagel’s politics overall. Most cross-party appointments, they said, “offer a veneer of bipartisanship to the national security team.” But Hagel would be different—he would not “move it toward the center, which is the usual role of such opposite-party nominees. On the contrary: Mr. Hagel’s stated positions on critical issues, ranging from defense spending to Iran, fall well to the left of those pursued by Mr. Obama during his first term—and place him near the fringe of the Senate.”

MORE and a Good Read at........

http://www.commondreams.org/view/2013/01/09-9

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Response to KoKo (Reply #3)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 10:21 PM

7. The man is positively

... logical!

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Response to KoKo (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2013, 06:31 PM

10. Kick.......

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