Originally posted on National Post | Full Comment:
‘The Jewish lobby intimidates a lot of people up here.”
Those were the words of U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel, as quoted by Middle East expert Aaron David Miller in a 2008 book.
“Up here” was Capitol Hill, of course. Five years later, Chuck Hagel has returned to the Senate, this time as Barack Obama’s nominee for Secretary of Defense. At a confirmation hearing on Thursday, Hagel was asked about his dark reference to the “Jewish lobby.” Hagel said he regretted the phrase, and then added — just to remove any lingering doubts — “I think it’s the only time on the record I’ve ever said that.”
The theory here seems to be that to mutter about the jews off the record would be perfectly fine. Everybody does that end. It’s only when you go “on the record” that anti-Jewish muttering becomes problematic, at least in the mind of Chuck Hagel…
View original 666 more words