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Obama and Hagel Face Iran

Posted: January 9, 2013 at 11:15 am   /   by

Politicians, pundits, and legions of voters are scratching their heads over the selection of former Nebraska Sen. Chuck Hagel to be Secretary of Defense.

Why, they ask, with so many potential candidates to choose from, would the president select an obscure and undistinguished two-term senator who has been out of office and on the sidelines for  years.

There are a few explanations but none of them seem to hold water. Some say that Hagel is a maverick Republican, and the president wants a high-level cabinet officer of the opposing party. Others say that Obama and Hagel bonded after Obama was elected to the Senate in 2004.

The real reason for Obama’s selection is more basic and troubling. In selecting Hagel, Obama has thrown caution to the foreign-policy winds and selected a Defense Secretary who shares his views on nearly every crucial aspect of the nation’s defense.

At one point, Hagel felt compelled to state that although he is not a pacifist he is a firm advocate of negotiations and diplomacy at almost all costs. This from a decorated Vietnam War veteran who volunteered for service in that troubled conflict. He has augmented this position with implications that he favors decreased defense spending.

So far so good. These views are entirely in sync with those of the president. But the real issue of the Hagel nomination is the issue of Iran, and the signal that the Obama administration continues to send to the mullahs in Tehran.

Hagel was highly skeptical of tough sanctions against Iran in the face of an uninterrupted nuclear weapons program. He was reluctant to label the Iranian entities as terrorist organizations. He went easy on Hamas and Hezbollah.

Then he made inappropriate comments about the so-called “Jewish lobby,” a code word term that is highly offensive to millions of Americans.

The bottom line here is whether Obama will do anything this spring when Iran formally unveils its nuclear arsenal. Experts predict that when the announcement is made Iran will have six to eight bombs and missiles capable of delivery in the entire Middle East region and Europe.

Then the president will be faced with the ultimate decision. Does he take action to disarm Iran or does he unveil an elaborate program of regional deterrence to protect Middle Eastern nations, including Israel, with the US nuclear umbrella.

The smart money predicts that Obama has long been committed to deterrence, and will make the false analogy between the successful deterrence between the United States and the Soviet Union, and the potential for successful deterrence against Iran.

This is where Obama is likely to have full agreement from  Secretary of Defense Hagel. For good measure, the president no doubt will be able to add Secretary of State John Kerry.

No dissent. A solid American policy. But deterrence against Iran will fail. Panic will ensue among many oil-rich Middle Eastern nations, to say nothing of Israel. The march toward nuclear proliferation will be led by Saudi Arabia and the race will be on.

All the while, the Obama administration will be united at the top and will stand idly by as Iran begins total domination of the Middle East.

John Walker

John Walker

Team Writer at Western Free Press
John Walker is a long time observer of American politics with experience in journalism, government, and public affairs.

During the course of his career, Walker has worked in Chicago, Washington DC, New York City, and Phoenix. He served as a reporter in Chicago, a press secretary and speechwriter in Washington, and in numerous positions in New York in corporate and financial services communications.

Walker is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin and the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.
John Walker

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  1. phoenixlaw says:

    Several points:
    It seems that you, along with AIPAC, are upset that Hagel refuses to take orders from the Israeli lobby, but instead considers the interests of the US to be his first priority.  My, what a novel idea !!
    Secondly, Iran is not  a threat to Israel and certainly is not a threat to the US.  Iran, unlike Israel, is a signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty, and as such, retains the authority to pursue civilian nuclear power. Its enrichment of uranium, now at 20% has been legal and consistent with medical demands for the product.  Iran has also expressed a willingness to negotiate this if it can meet these needs another way.  However, even at 20% Iran’s production is well below the approximately 95% purity needed for nuclear weapons.
    Israel, not Iran, wants war, despite its people’s wishes.  Israel has the most lethal arsenal of illegal nuclear weapons, chemical and biological weapons, jets, tanks and modern weapons in the Middle East.  By its actions for the last 50 years, Israel has shown itself to be the real rogue nation in the Middle East.  You say that the march toward nuclear proliferation will be on because of Iran.  What of the fact that Israel has built a huge nuclear arsenal?  If it’s fair for Iran to be the subject of scrutiny, sanctions and inspections, then why is it not fair for Israel to be the object of that same scrutiny, sanctions and inspections?  After all, Israel has been the most aggressive nation in the Middle East for the last 50 years, while Iran has not attacked a neighbor since the 17th Century.

    1. Guest says:

      @phoenixlaw Is it true that 9/11 (2001) was engineered by Israel to draw the US into a war with Israel’s enemies?

      1. phoenixlaw says:

        That theory has been stated, and certainly is a possibility, but without positive evidence, it certainly can’t be proven.  Given the control that AIPAC has on Congress and the White House, I doubt that any serious investigation into the possibility will ever happen.

        1. Guest says:

          @phoenixlaw Also wouldn’t the 911 theory fit with the document titled Protocols of the Elders of Zion? Are you familiar with it? Do you think it’s real or a forgery?

Obama and Hagel Face Iran