Funny how Hagel never felt the need to apologize until his past remarks threatened his future aspirations for power.
Chuck Hagel’s years-ago use of the term “Jewish lobby” offends Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz. But the Florida lawmaker and Democratic National Committee chairwoman said after speaking with Hagel yesterday, she is even more supportive of his nomination for defense secretary.
“He was apologetic. He said he absolutely understands that it was an unfortunate choice of words,” Wasserman Schultz told the Tampa Bay Times on Friday. “By the end of my conversation, he really put me at ease. I have a comfort level that I’m very glad that I have.”
“Unfortunate choice of words”? The whole idea he was expressing was inappropriate. The bad part wasn’t his use of the specific words “Jewish” and “lobby”. It was his belief that Jews secretly controlled Washington that was the problem.
Scrutiny goes well beyond word choice (Hagel’s also apologized for anti-gay remarks) to whether he’s sufficiently strong on Iran. Critics have accused him of opposing sanctions but Wasserman Schultz said Hagel gave assurances he fully supports President Barack Obama’s positions. “He told me unequivocally that he does not support a policy of containment; he supports a policy of prevention.”
So…he’s pledging to support Obama’s position. How nice? That would still make him a Secretary of Defense who’s weak-kneed on Iran. The job includes providing counsel to the president. The person providing counsel shouldn’t be weak on a state-sponsor of terrorism pursuing nuclear weapons.
And this ignores the fact that while being weak on Iran and ranting about Jews secretly controlling the American government, Hagel also refused to sign a letter condemning antisemitism — a letter that drew the support of all remaining 99 US Senators. Hagel was the only one who refused to condemn antisemitism.
Weak on Iran. Believes in Jews pulling strings of power. And refuses to condemn antisemitism. This is Barack Obama’s nominee for Secretary of Defense.