Back in March 2007, NJDC proclaimed Indecisive Senator Hagel has Questionable Israel Record:
As Senator Hagel sits around for six more months and tries to decide whether to launch a futile bid for the White House, he has a lot of questions to answer about his commitment to Israel. Consider this:But of course, back in 2007, Chuck Hagel was merely a Republican.
- In August 2006, Hagel was one of only 12 Senators who refused to write the EU asking them to declare Hezbollah a terrorist organization.
- In October 2000, Hagel was one of only 4 Senators who refused to sign a Senate letter in support of Israel.
- In November 2001, Hagel was one of only 11 Senators who refsued to sign a letter urging President Bush not to meet with the late Yassir Arafat until his forces ended the violence against Israel.
- In December 2005, Hagel was one of only 27 who refused to sign a letter to President Bush to pressure the Palestinian Authroity to ban terrorist groups from participating in Palestinian legislative elections.
- In June 2004, Hagel refused to sign a letter urging President Bush to highlight Iran's nuclear program at the G-8 summit.
Actually, Chuck Hagel is still a Republican -- but now he is a Republican being selected by Democratic President Obama to be his Secretary of Defense -- and that makes all the difference, so now the NJDC can approve Hagel's appointment:
WASHINGTON, DC- The National Jewish Democratic Council today reacted to the news that former Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE) will be nominated to be Secretary of Defense:Putting aside Obama's well-known friction with Netanyahu, the pressure he's put on Israel regarding the settlements and the public drubbing Obama has put Netanyahu through in the past, one might think it a bit odd for the NJDC to approve of someone who claims politicians are intimidated by the "Israel Lobby"
“President Barack Obama’s unprecedented pro-Israel credentials are unquestionable, and setting policy starts and stops with the President. While we have expressed concerns in the past, we trust that when confirmed, former Senator Chuck Hagel will follow the President’s lead of providing unrivaled support for Israel—on strategic cooperation, missile defense programs, and leading the world against Iran’s nuclear program.”
Granted that the NJDC is expected to toe the line on whatever Obama does, I imagine it could not have been pleasant to take back what they wrote about Hagel earlier. Already in 2009, former NJDC head Ira Forman saw the possibility NJDC may have to retract criticism of Hagel in order to fall in line with Obama's lead:
In 2009, NJDC's then-executive director, Ira Forman, said it would be problematic for the group if newly elected President Obama, as it was then rumored, would nominate Hagel for a top Cabinet post.So you can imagine their relief when the NJDC found a Republican to bash who was not backed by Obama -- GOP Leaders Outrageously Appoint Sen. Rand Paul, Proud Opponent of “Welfare” to Israel, to SFRC:
WASHINGTON, DC- The National Jewish Democratic Council (NJDC) today expressed outrage over Senator Rand Paul’s (R-KY) new membership on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee given his deeply disturbing record when it comes to the U.S.-Israel relationship.Now the NJDC can go back to their job of backing Democratic politicians, without worrying about support for Israel getting in their way.
Hat tip: MR
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