Pro-Israeli lobby worried about Hagel's nomination as Secretary of Defense

by Cyrus Safdari (source: Iran Affairs)
Wednesday, December 19, 2012

It is sort of fun watching the nervousness of the pro-Israeli lobby over the potentional nomination of Chuck Hagel as Obama's Secretary of Defense. There is speculation that he may not be willing to do "what is necessary to stop Iran" as Jonathan Tobin puts it over at Commentary. And in addition to scouring Hagel's past speeches and writings for any indication of independent thinking, we've already witnessing the smears of anti-Semitism too.

In any case I think it will be fun watching AIPAC and friends do to Chuck what they did to Chas Freeman. Walt thinks that the defeat of the Hagel nomination will finally lead to a realization and national discussion about the negative influence of the pro-Israeli lobby on US politics. But, no such discussion happened when Chas was chased out by the Lobby, much to Chas' disappointment:

"The outrageous agitation that followed the leak of my pending appointment will be seen by many to raise serious questions about whether the Obama administration will be able to make its own decisions about the Middle East and related issues.  I regret that my willingness to serve the new administration has ended by casting doubt on its ability to consider, let alone decide what policies might best serve the interests of the United States rather than those of a Lobby intent on enforcing the will and interests of a foreign government."

And this inability to consider what serves the best interest of the US rather than Israel has not changed, so why assume that Hagel's nomination will be any different? Chances are Hagel will not get the job...unless of course if Hagel and Obama manage to convince the Lobby that they're quite willing to be Netanyahu's bedsheet regardless of what inconsiderate things Hagel may have said in the past about not going to war against Iran, in which case his appointment may go through but only after plenty of concessions are made to Israel.

In any case, just let this sink in for a moment, folks: agents representing a foreign country were able to veto the decision of a US president about who would serve as his highest intelligence advisor and now will be determining whom the same President can appoint as his Defense Secretary. That's how bad things have become in Washington.

I should point out, of course, that there's no guarantee at all that Hagel will continue opposing a war on Iran once appointed. If you remember, Bush's VP Cheney strongly voiced his opposition to Iran sanctions while he served as the CEO of Haliburton. After becoming VP, he morphed into a hawk on Iran. I'm sure Hagel can dance just as well as Cheney if and when necessary.


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