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Wed Jan 9, 2013, 08:23 AM

why hagel is a good choice for sect. of defense

This is a post I wrote in August 2006 that reminds us why the choice of Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense is such an inspired one.

In the same way that the race for the Democratic nomination in 2008 is shaping up to be Hillary vs. the non-Hillary, centering on differences over the war in Iraq, the race on the Republican side looks like it could turn out to be McCain vs. the non-McCain, also centering on differences over the war.

And the man looking more and more like the non-McCain is Chuck Hagel.

The two decorated war heroes are longtime friends. But their political paths seem to be diverging. Whereas McCain, longtime wearer of the mantle of party maverick, is aggressively staking out the sweet spot of the GOP base -- supporting President Bush on Iraq and tax cuts (yes, the ones he originally voted against), and making nice with Jerry Falwell -- Hagel is courageously and passionately speaking out against the White House's disastrous foreign policies.

Indeed, Hagel's withering criticisms of the president's handling of Iraq have been far bolder than anything most Democrats have been willing to say.

He recently called for the withdrawal of U.S. troops, described Iraq as "a hopeless, winless situation" and asked: "Are we going to put our troops in the middle of a civil war? This will be a slaughter of immense proportions."

He has also said that Iraq is "an absolute replay of Vietnam" (he should know, having received two Purple Hearts for his service there) and that "Iraq is not going to turn out the way we were promised it was. And that's a fact."

Like Jack Murtha, another Vietnam vet, Hagel originally voted for the war but turned against it after seeing how poorly it was being handled -- and becoming disgusted with the Bush administration's sugar-coating of the deteriorating situation.

He broke ranks back in June 2005, appalled by Dick Cheney's claim that the insurgency was in its "last throes": "Things aren't getting better; they're getting worse. The White House is completely disconnected from reality. It's like they're just making it up as they go along. The reality is that we're losing in Iraq."

And he's kept up the drumbeat. "The Iraqi government, the Iraqi people, want the United States out of Iraq," he said in June 2006. "They see us as oppressors, rather than liberators. That's just a fact of life."

These sentiments have put him on the side of the majority of Americans, but also in the position of
I copied only part of an e-mail I received this morning;as we all know Bush and Cheney screwed up more than they were right! It took the public to demand results in Iraq-a war that should have lasted less than a year including occupation lasted 10!
thats what happens when two arm chair hawks who never saw combat tried to over rule their generals. the last time the world see this was when hitler opened two fronts!
the results were disaster for germany ;in our case it was financial chaos.
war should always be a last resort-

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Reply why hagel is a good choice for sect. of defense (Original post)
luckyleftyme2 Jan 2013 OP
Bluenorthwest Jan 2013 #1

Response to luckyleftyme2 (Original post)

Wed Jan 9, 2013, 10:18 AM

1. Of course Hagel voted in favor of the War in Iraq. Let us remember that 23 of his peers voted NO

including one Republican and one Independent. They were right. Hagel and the rest of the rush to invade Iraq for no reason crowd were wrong. Let us not forget those who got it right even as we elevate yet another of those who made the single worst decision regarding war in the history of the US.
US Senators who (unlike Hagel) actually opposed the Iraq War:
Akaka (D-HI), Bingaman (D-NM), Boxer (D-CA), Byrd (D-WV), Conrad (D-ND), Corzine (D-NJ), Dayton (D-MN), Durbin (D-IL), Feingold (D-WI), Graham (D-FL), Inouye (D-HI), Kennedy (D-MA), Leahy (D-VT), Levin (D-MI), Mikulski (D-MD), Murray (D-WA), Reed (D-RI), Sarbanes (D-MD), Stabenow (D-MI), Wellstone (D-MN), and Wyden (D-OR).
Sen. Chafee (R-RI).
Sen. Jeffords (I-VT)

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