Bipartisan Group Of Former National Security Advisers Condemn Attacks On Hagel
Four former national security advisers in a letter to the editor in the Washington Post published on Tuesday denounced what New York TImes columnist Tom Friedman described as “disgusting” attacks on former Republican senator Chuck Hagel and praised Hagel’s prior service to the United States.
Responding to a Dec. 21 Post story on Hagel’s potential nomination to be Secretary of Defense, the former national security advisers, James L. Jones (Obama), Brent Scowcroft (Ford, H.W Bush) , Zbigniew Brzezinski (Carter) and Frank Carlucci (Reagan), said they “strongly object…to the attacks on the character of former senator Chuck Hagel,” whom they called “a man of unshakable integrity and wisdom who has served his country in the most distinguished manner in peace and war”:
He is a rare example of a public servant willing to rise above partisan politics to advance the interests of the United States and its friends and allies. Moreover, it is damaging to the quality of our civic discourse for prospective Cabinet nominees to be subjected to such vicious attacks on their character before an official nomination.
This type of behavior will only discourage future prospective nominees from public service when our country badly needs quality leadership in government.
Scowcroft and 10 other retired senior U.S. military officials, including William Fallon and Anthony Zinni, signed a letter last week saying that Hagel would be “a strong leader at the Pentagon” and that he’s “eminently qualified for the job.” That letter came on the heals of one just days prior in which nine former U.S. Ambassadors, including Ryan Crocker, signed a letter praising Hagel’s qualifications for the top Pentagon job.