Hagel still in the running?still in the running to be the next United States Secretary of Defense. Now, they're trying to sell him as 'pro-Israel.'
Friedman's support isn't the only boost Hagel's candidacy has gotten in the last 24 hours. Last night the Washington Post published a letter in support of Hagel signed by four former national security advisers -- James L. Jones, Brent Scowcroft, Zbigniew Brzezinski, and Frank Carlucci. They write:
Mr. Hagel is 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.Note the bipartisan cast. These people held the top White House national security post in, respectively, the Obama, George H.W. Bush, Carter, and Reagan administrations. And they're not alone. Hagel has also been endorsed by a slew of former U.S. ambassadors, from both Democratic and Republican administrations, including no fewer than five who have served as ambassador to Israel.
The Friedman column and the Washington Post letter come at an important time for Hagel. Some observers were starting to think his candidacy was on life support.What a load of crap. I have no particular recollection of Carlucci, but Scowcroft and Zbig are both known for their animus toward Israel and Jones wasn't exactly a supporter of giving us tender loving care during the first Obama administration either. As to the four Presidents cited, only Reagan could be classified as more pro-Israel than not - the other three all were (or are) known for their hostility to the Jewish state.
Hagel is 'pro-Israel' like J Street is 'pro-Israel.' In other words, you have to be a creative interpreter to think that he's pro-Israel. Remember Chas Freeman? They would argue that he's pro-Israel too.
Wright advocates Obama putting up a fight for Hagel. I say, bring it on.