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Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Dershowitz has a change of heart, says he'll testify against Hagel

Even Alan Dershowitz apparently realizes that he now must choose between  supporting Israel and supporting President Hussein Obama. After issuing a milquetoast statement in response to the nomination of Chuck Hagel to be Secretary of Defense, Dershowitz told Breitbart.com on Monday night that he is willing to testify against Hagel on Iran.
Breitbart News: Who were the opposing voices among Democrats and the administration?
Dershowitz: I don't know for sure. I've been told--well, the head of the National Jewish Democratic Council came out against it...but I'm told that an number of others within the White House advised him not to do it. And there are a number of Democratic Senators, Jewish and non-Jewish, who are opposed but who will either vote for Hagel, if needed, to get him through--or will vote against him if their votes are not needed
But this is not a liberal-conservative split or a Democrat-Republican split. Nor is it about whether Hagel used the term "Israel lobby" or "Jewish lobby," for me. It's all about Iran. And I think that's a serious policy issue. 
And I have been approached to testify, possibly, about it. And if asked, I will testify against Hagel's nomination--on the issue of Iran.
I actually find what I highlighted in Dershowitz's first paragraph even more interesting. Convictions? Values? Morals? Don't expect any of those from the Democrats. I thought only the Knesset worked that way.

The Algemeiner adds this quote from Dershowitz.
“It is less important what he (Hagel) really thinks, it is what the Iranians think he thinks,” that is important, added the prominent Democrat. “The Iranians are celebrating this appointment in Tehran, this was a great appointment for Tehran, its a green light or at least a yellow light for them to pursue their nuclear program.”
“I makes it more likely that Iran will actually move towards developing a nuclear program and it makes it more likely that there will have to be a military response. This is a very bad nomination for peace.”
“Even if he is not confirmed it is a bad decision,” Dershowitz added, “because it conveys to the Iranians the President’s state of mind, and they will misunderstand it. They will misunderstand this as believing the president does not want to keep the military option on the table, so the nomination itself will set back the cause of peace, even if he is ultimately not confirmed.”
I don't think the Iranians are misunderstanding at all. Obama doesn't care if they go nuclear so long as the only state they attack is Israel.

What could go wrong?

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At 1:51 PM, Blogger Susuu said...

Carl, I don't think Dershowitz has had a change of heart. To him, I think this decision to choose Hagel, is just a small detail. I think he still supports Obama, and will continue to do so.

In any case, a Secretary of Defense isn't the person who decides whether to go to war. Aside from the fact that Congress is supposed to be the final arbiter, since WWII, the decision seems to be made by the C in C, alone, not the Secretary, at times with a partial nod to Congress.

It seems to me that Hagel will simply be a willing assistant to Obama, no more, no less. That, regardless, is bad enough, as unless Israel can find another major power as a patron, which I doubt, it is likely to face major difficulty until Obama is out of the White House.

At 3:04 PM, Blogger Carl in Jerusalem said...


You're correct that the Secretary of Defense has little role in a decision to go to war, however he has a huge role in how a war is conducted once it starts and in arms sales to American allies.

Growing up in the 1960's when the Vietnam war was in full swing, I can recall hearing Robert McNamara's name in the media every single day. This is not just another undersecretary of the treasury. It's a big name appointment.


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