12 thoughts on “A Vote For Hagel”

  1. Someone I was reading the other day pointed out that the damage is already done. Just by the act of nominating Hagel, the President has already signaled that he will allow Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon. Can’t say I disagree.

  2. At this point, all votes are votes for a nuclear Iran. And last year, a vote for Romney would have been a vote for a nuclear Iran as well. There is no policy that can be plausibly implemented in this decade, that will do more than delay Iran’s acquisition of nuclear weapons by a few years. There is a small chance that Iran will chose not to acquire nuclear weapons at all, but little we can do even to influence that choice.

    Persuading Iran not to use the nuclear weapons it acquires, that we can probably do. A rational debate on whether or not Hagel is the man for that job, might be useful. He at least seems to meet the primary requirement of having realistic expectations, but even that much is hard to assess given the comforting lies we demand of our politicians. And it will in any event depend on who he is paired with as SecState.

    Winning a nuclear war with Iran if all else fails, to the extent that nuclear wars can be won at all, that we will be able to do no matter who serves as SecDef for the next four years.

    1. Incorrect.

      There is at least *one* policy that would almost certainly prevent Iran from obtaining and/or using nuclear weapons.

      That policy, however, is currently verboten to even discuss.

  3. Funny how horrible this Hagel person is now, after the GOP establishment supported him in primary after primary…

  4. Let’s not forget Stuxnet, Duqu, Flame, ect. Obama isn’t willing to bomb Iran or have our troops pay a visit but an undeclared shadow cyber war without congressional approval or oversite is right up his ally.

      1. Does it matter?

        I am not saying cyber attacks will necessarily stop Iran from getting the bomb. I am pointing out that they have been taking place, so something is being done, not nothing. And I am pointing out that an undeclared shadow war with no congressional over site is exactly they type of action Obama prefers to take.

        1. Does it matter whether the action being taken will accomplish the goal being sought?

          Yes, it matters, and no, it won’t.

    1. There is more going on than cyberwarfare. There have been plenty of targeted assassinations of Iranian nuclear scientists lately.

  5. “Funny how horrible this Hagel person is now, after the GOP establishment supported him in primary after primary…”

    True, The Republican Party has had an elitist core that the Tea Party feels deeply uncomfortable with. It is notable that this elite was mostly in charge when quotas for Jews in academia were in place before WW2. They also have strong interests in ME oil, where toadying to anti-jewish Wahhabis is useful.

    While most Tea Partiers are strong backers of Israel as an ally, you can find some there who will quote anybody and anything in order to pull back from the world. The alliance with Israel is their most frequent target.

    It is no oddity that the Republican establishment is obviously even more uncomfortable with their Tea Party brothers than the Tea Party is with them. They are all about keeping their status, and Tea Party people know they are doubtful allies, but, …even they can be made to see reason, …when the votes pile high enough.

  6. Non-proliferation sort of worked while the world was under the domination of the US and Soviet spheres. Basically those nations relied on the superpowers to protect them in case of nuclear conflict. As more third party countries get nuclear weapons the scheme starts falling apart.

    There is a Sino-Soviet split and China gets nuclear weapons for deterrence.
    Then India gets nuclear weapons because China has them.
    Then Pakistan gets them because India did.
    Then Iran gets them because Pakistan has them.

    It just goes on. I see at least three new nuclear weapon states happening in the not so far away future. They have had nuclear programs for decades. There are at least three more which could have them as well with well developed civilian nuclear programs which could be leveraged for nuclear programs and enough incentive for self-defense.

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