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Wed Jan 9, 2013, 09:07 PM

Want to read something truly remarkable?

I give you Eliot A. Cohen in the Washington Post, arguing that a soldier who served in a war is a poor choice for Defense Secretary.

This, by the way, is Cohen: "In 1997, Cohen became a founding member of the Project for the New American Century, which became known as a center for prominent neoconservatives. He has been a member of the Defense Policy Board Advisory Committee, a committee of civilians and retired military officers that the U.S. Secretary of Defense may call upon for advice, since the beginning of the administration of President George W. Bush. He was put on the board after acquaintance Richard Perle put forward his name. Cohen has referred to the War on Terrorism as 'World War IV.' In the run-up to the 2003 Invasion of Iraq, he was a member of Committee for the Liberation of Iraq, a group of prominent persons who pressed for an invasion." (link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eliot_A._Cohen)

Nowhere in Mr. Cohen's biography does military service appear, but he was instrumental in hurling tens and tens of thousands of soldiers into war, many of whom did not return, or returned broken.

...and this is his neocon chickenhawk fuckwit argument for why a soldier would make a bad SecDef:

Hagel’s military service is a scant qualification for defense secretary
http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/chuck-hagels-vietnam-experience-is-not-much-of-a-qualification-for-defense-secretary/2013/01/09/6ce0089a-59b4-11e2-9fa9-5fbdc9530eb9_story.html?hpid=z2

...because these assholes never quit. Ever.

11 replies, 1718 views

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 09:12 PM

1. Even more amazing, Hagel saved McConnell's brother in Vietnam and he doesn't have his support.

 

On Sunday, McConnell said Hagel should be given a “fair” confirmation hearing but wouldn’t stand by his previous praise of the former senator. When Hagel retired from the Senate, McConnell celebrated Hagel as someone who had “earned the respect of his colleagues and risen to national prominence as a clear voice on foreign policy and national security.”

In that 2008 farewell address to Hagel, McConnell praised Hagel’s heroism in Vietnam, noting how Hagel saved his brother — with whom he also served — by dragging him out of an armored personnel carrier that exploded after hitting a landmine. He called him one of Nebraska’s “great statesmen.”

But on Sunday, McConnell was mum on his former colleague’s chances for a new job.


Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2013/01/chuck-hagel-takes-fire-from-capitol-hill-85805_Page3.html#ixzz2HXDKAtme

Oops I guess it wasn't McConnell's brother but Hagel's brother? I can't tell from the piece.

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Response to dkf (Reply #1)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 09:14 PM

2. Always Knww McConnell was a Low Creature, Ma'am, But had No Idea Just How Low

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Response to dkf (Reply #1)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 09:18 PM

4. Wait, I thought he saved his own brother.

 

He and his brother served in the same unit and Chuck saved his younger brother when their vehicle hit a mine or something.

Turtleman's brother was also in the same unit?

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Response to MrSlayer (Reply #4)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 09:20 PM

5. Oh I thought it was McConnells brother. Possibly my mistake.

 

They were laughing about it on Morning Joe but I assumed it was McConnell's brother.

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Response to dkf (Reply #5)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 09:29 PM

6. I see where the confusion is. It's Morning Joe's fault.

 

http://www.mediaite.com/tv/politico-confuses-morning-joe-crew-whose-brother-did-chuck-hagel-save-in-vietnam/

Following a weather report, Scarborough came back to have Willie Geist make a “small correction.”
“Chuck Hagel saved the life of his own brother,” Geist explained. “He served side by side with his younger brother in Vietnam.”
Mark Halperin pointed out that even saving your own brother “ain’t bad,” and Scarborough quipped “(McConnell) hates (Hagel) because he saved his own brother? What’s he got against brothers?”
After a commercial break, POLITICO editor Mike Allen defended the passage that caused the confusion, citing grammar rules. “A pronoun refers to the proper noun or the noun before it,” Allen smugly asserted.

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Response to MrSlayer (Reply #6)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 09:34 PM

7. Funny thing I thought they were laughing about making it seem like Hagel saved his own brother.

 

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Response to dkf (Reply #1)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 09:35 PM

8. Hagel saved his own brother, not McConnell's.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 09:15 PM

3. they never quit and nothing is too far over the line, think about it . . . NOTHING.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 09:38 PM

9. Seems like he's a-scared. Hagel thinks the defense budget can be cut...and he's not crazy about

going to war with Iran. Methinks Cohen doth protest a bit much about how bad it is to have a soldier leading soldiers, instead of a neocon who used his privileged son status to get out of war.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 10:33 PM

10. Sergeant Hagel has no business telling the generals what to do.

And having been second in command at the VA also doesn't count for shit. Yes, this is truly remarkable.

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Response to WilliamPitt (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2013, 12:40 AM

11. I don't have an opinion about Hagel. He may be fine but he is a Republican,

so I wonder why we can't have a Democratic Secretary of Defense.

Regardless, Cohen's article is a gem of an example of the art of changing the subject to stop the conversation.

For example, Cohen writes:

"Our two most effective wartime presidents, Abraham Lincoln and Franklin Roosevelt, had virtually no military experience. Jefferson Davis, by way of contrast, in addition to betraying the Union, was a fine officer, a veteran of the Mexican War and a president who could barely stay on civil terms with any general other than Robert E. Lee, who managed him rather than the other way around."

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/chuck-hagels-vietnam-experience-is-not-much-of-a-qualification-for-defense-secretary/2013/01/09/6ce0089a-59b4-11e2-9fa9-5fbdc9530eb9_story.html?hpid=z2

Those facts might support an argument that an otherwise qualified nominee who never served in the military could nevertheless make an excellent president.

Except, that there are some notable examples of military veterans who made excellent presidents: George Washington. Another: Theodore Roosevelt. And a third arguably pretty good president if not as good as Washington or Teddy Roosevelt: Dwight D. Eisenhower.

So, those examples do not prove that a veteran cannot make a good president.

Note -- president, not secretary of defense. Hagel is being considered for secretary of defense, not the presidency.

The article fails to mention Hagel's service in the Senate, his courage in battle (saved his own brother who served with him in Viet Nam) and, later in opposing illegitimate wars and waste.

And that is just one example of why the article has utterly nothing to do with whether Hagel would make a good Secretary of Defense. It is irrelevant. Why was it even published?

Looks like a hatchet job on Hagel. As I said, there may be things that I will learn that will cause me to criticize the nomination of Hagel.

But Cohen's article is unfair. It has nothing to do with Hagel's qualifications for secretary of defense. The fact that it is obviously irrelevant should not be accepted in silence. It's a shabby piece.

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