Republicans are in this fix because Democrats won’t act responsibly. Recall what happened when President George W. Bush nominated the hapless Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court. The opposition party was pushing for her, figuring she’d be a dim pushover. But following in-person meetings on Capitol Hill, it was Republicans, unlike Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and his Democratic friends, who came out not to vouch for her but to say they were concerned and unsatisfied. Republican senators and a grass-roots conservative movement organized against their own president. (We can do better. This is an insult to the institution. She’s in over her head.) And sure enough the White House found a graceful way to end the nomination, saying it couldn’t provide documents needed for confirmation because of executive privilege.Hagel's tenure on the Hill showed that behind that crusty and idiosyncratic persona was and administrative nightmare---according to former staffers. Obscenities and nasty insults were hurled at terrified staffers.
Now, however, it is Democrats who cheer for an inept nominee. According to Bob Woodward, some Democrats have called the White House to see if Hagel is withdrawing. And yet none will publicly admit their qualms; none have hinted that they will vote against Hagel. There is no graceful exit from the White House because President Obama doesn’t give a darn whether Hagel is an incompetent fool. He’s not backing down. He’s going to stick it to the pro-Israel community and to Israel. He’s going to stick it to the Republicans.
There is no other way to read his determination to go forward with such a flawed nominee. And Democrats, unlike their Republican counterparts in the Miers nomination, don’t have the nerve or the concern for the institution in which the nominee would serve to force the president’s hand.
Let’s recap. The president doesn’t care about an inept nominee. The Democrats don’t care about an inept nominee. But Republicans are supposed to defer to the White House’s judgment? This is, frankly, nuts.
Hagel accused the State Department of being "an adjunct to the Israeli Foreign Ministry. During my tenure as an Arabist FSO working in NEA, the Near East Asia Bureau, the support of the State Dept. was only on the Seventh Floor and that because of political reasons. A solid phalanx of FSO's on the fifth floor in NEA and our Ambassadors in the 22 Arab countries were neutral or very much opposed to Israel's policies.
I would have agreed with Hagel during Kissinger's tenure, but Cyrus Vance and Jim Baker were instructed by the White House to moderate policies towards Israel.
The inside skinny on the entire American/Israeli/Arab saber dance is that the Democrats supported Israel's left-wing Labor Party until in 1978, Likud ousted them from power. The Dems abruptly changed their attitude and policies toward Israel when the right-wing Likud kept Begin, Shamir, Rabin in power until Rabin's assassination by a far-right settler.
The Dems hate Netanyahu and Hagel is Barry Soetero's pet anti-Israeli thumb-in-their-eye. Iran, Syria, Egypt would all be boosted if Hagel were confirmed.
Obama is angry that the GOP is not bowing to his narcissistic sense of self-entitlement.
I'm hoping some less controversial nominee oversees the painful cutbacks the imbecile in the White House is gleefully overseeing as he continues to geld America through economic and political incompetence and dishonesty across the board.