:raised eyebrow: Chuck Hagel stepping down as SecDef.

Well, THAT was quick:

…And the Obama administration’s unstated policy of slavishly (albeit incompetently) imitating the Bush administration continues.

Moe Lane

PS: Oh man but that is going to be an epic confirmation hearing next year.


And Hagel approaches the Place of Sacrifice:

The last question asked at Monday night’s closed-door briefing of members of the House of Representatives was a simple one: Who made the decision to transfer five top Taliban officials held at Guantanamo Bay to Qatar in exchange for the return of the Taliban’s lone American POW, Army sergeant Bowe Bergdahl?

According to Buck McKeon, the chairman of the House Armed Services committee, the Obama administration’s briefers told he gathered House members that the person responsible for the decision to make the deal was not President Obama but Chuck Hagel, the secretary of defense.

Continue reading OBAMABUS *HUNGERS*, Chuck Hagel!

Chuck Hagel wants to kill the Warthog, once and for all.

(Via Instapundit) Why not?  After all, it’s only the single most useful all-around plane in our arsenal.

The New York Times reported late Sunday that Hagel’s proposal, which will be released to lawmakers and the public on Monday, will call for a reduction in size of the military that will leave it capable of waging war, but unable to carry out protracted occupations of foreign territory, as in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Under Hagel’s plan, the number of troops in the Army will drop to between 440,000 and 450,000, a reduction of at least 120,000 soldiers from its post-Sept.11 peak.

Officials told the Times that Hagel’s plan has been endorsed by the Joint Chiefs of Staff and protects funding for Special Operations forces and cyberwarfare. It also calls for the Navy to maintain all eleven of its aircraft carriers currently in operation. However, the budget proposal mandates the elimination of the entire fleet of Air Force A-10 attack aircraft, as well as the retiring of the U-2 spy plane, a stalwart of Cold War operations.

Continue reading Chuck Hagel wants to kill the Warthog, once and for all.

Meanwhile, a somewhat belated note on the Chuck Hagel thing.

John Podheretz speaks for me here:

If confirmation hearings actually served as the job interview for the Senate — which must approve a presidential Cabinet appointment, under the rules of the Constitution — Hagel would’ve been dead in the water. But of course they rarely do.

What that hearing did do was give the lie to all those who said there were no grounds on which to oppose Hagel. By the hearing’s end, there was precious little ground to do anything but oppose Hagel — except for the key fact that the president wanted him.

Well, he has him, and mazel tov.

Although I’m going to add: there’s probably a bunch of Democratic Senators looking at the Obama/Woodward meltdown right now and thinking Wait.  I did this President a favor by voting for that schlemiel?  What was I thinking?

Answer’s easy, of course: they weren’t.

Louis Farrakhan endorses Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense.

:leaning forward:  We win.

After arguing that the media is controlled by Jewish interests, [Louis Farrakhan] applauded Hagel’s nomination. “Senator Hagel is in trouble,” Farrakhan said. “But America needs a man in Congress like that, who’s not a rubber stamp for others. You need a man like Senator Hagel as your secretary of defense because a man with a mind like that will keep you out of fighting somebody else’s wars. You need a man in government that has another opinion that is not controlled, and if the Senate does not confirm him as defense secretary because of his opinion on Israel, that only proves that the Senate in the U.S. Congress is controlled by the Israeli lobby. And it also sentences America to war with Iran for the state of Israel.”

In a very bizarre sort of way, admittedly. Whether or not the nomination goes through tomorrow – unlike Allahpundit*, I am not quite ready to assume that it will – the original purpose of said nomination is now officially dead, dead, dead.  There is now no way that you can say with a straight face that Chuck Hagel is acceptable to the Republican party.  The Republican party does not stand with Louis Farrakhan.  We derive considerable pleasure from not standing with that anti-Semitic nutjob.  If you are liked by Louis Farrakhan, there is something wrong with you. Continue reading Louis Farrakhan endorses Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense.

…Are you *crying*, Chuck Hagel?

The following is not intended in any way to serve as a complaint against Speaker of the House John Boehner, who I maintain a lively professional respect for.

You are. You’re crying.

New York Sen. Chuck Schumer said Wednesday that Chuck Hagel “almost had tears in his eyes” as he explained to the former Nebraska senator that the expression “Jewish lobby” is rooted in a negative depiction of Jews.

There’s no crying in politics! Continue reading …Are you *crying*, Chuck Hagel?

QotD, Yet More On Chuck Hagel edition.

Daniel Foster:

But as far as old Bill Occam and I are concerned, the most plausible explanation for why President Obama nominated Chuck Hagel is that . . . he wanted to. He thinks Chuck Hagel will be effective in administering the national-security policy of candidate Obama circa 2007 or 2008, and even of President Obama circa 2009. And that’s the policy President Obama is interested in pursuing in his second term. In other words, the reason President Obama’s defense nominee sucks is that President Obama’s defense policy sucks.

More accurately, in my opinion: Obama’s secretly-desired defense policy sucks.   His public defense policy is merely incompetently administered.

Moe Lane

PS: I really don’t know how the Hagel thing will go down, at this point.  I do know that expecting the White House to admit to anything being wrong if they can possibly avoid it is a mug’s game.

Report: Chuck Hagel not at 60 to confirm.

Just at rumor level at this point:

…and do not get your hopes up. But this is apparently turning into a somewhat higher expenditure of political capital than Barack Obama originally envisioned. Such a shame.