Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.

Hagel on Israel – In Letters

January 8, 2013 3:23 pm 0 comments

Chuck Hagel.

On the day when President Barack Obama nominated former Nebraska senator Chuck Hagel for defense secretary, the National Jewish Democratic Council (NJDC) said that despite expressing concerns about Hagel in the past, it believes 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.”

When it comes to putting pen to paper, where has Hagel previously stood on foreign policy matters pertaining to Israel and the Middle East? In his 2008 book, The Much Too Promised Land, Miller recounted a conversation with Hagel as follows: “The American Israel Public Affairs Committee comes knocking with a pro-Israel letter, Hagel continued, and ‘then you’ll get eighty or ninety senators on it. I don’t think I’ve ever signed one of the letters’—because, he added, they were ‘stupid.'”

Hagel, who served in the Senate from January 1997 to January 2009, was telling Miller the truth about his letter-signing history. Below are the highlights of letters signed by large majorities of the U.S. Senate, noting whether Hagel signed or not. On Monday, Hagel told the Lincoln Journal Star regarding this issue, “I didn’t sign on to certain resolutions and letters because they were counter-productive and didn’t solve a problem.”

MARCH 2009

Letter: Asking President Obama to open direct talks with Hamas leaders

Number of signatories: 10 (former and current policy officials, not only serving U.S. senators)

Hagel: Signed (after he had already left the Senate)

JUNE 2008

Letter: Reiterating Israel’s right to self-defense, calling on the U.S. to stand strongly with Israel at the UN, and urging pressure on Arab states to do more to support Israeli-Palestinian talks

Number of signatories: 77

Hagel: Did not sign

MARCH 2007

Letter: Request for “no direct aid and no contacts with any members of a Palestinian Authority that does not explicitly and unequivocally recognize Israel’s right to exist, renounce terror, and accept previous agreements”

Number of signatories: 79

Hagel: Did not sign

AUGUST 2006

Letter: Asking the European Union to declare Hezbollah a terrorist organization

Number of signatories: 88

Hagel: Did not sign

DECEMBER 2005

Letter: Asking President George W. Bush to place pressure the Palestinian Authority to ban terrorist groups from participating in Palestinian legislative elections

Number of signatories: 73

Hagel: Did not sign

JUNE 2005

Letter: Supporting Israel’s disengagement from Gaza and calling on Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to “act decisively to assert his control over the disparate, armed groups in Gaza and the West Bank”

Number of signatories: 77

Hagel: Did not sign

NOVEMBER 2001

Letter: Asking President Bush not to meet Yasser Arafat until Arafat took steps to end violence against Israel

Number of signatories: 89

Hagel: Did not sign

OCTOBER 2000

Letter: Expressing support for Israel after the start of the Second Intifada

Number of signatories: 96

Hagel: Did not sign

MARCH 1999

Resolution: Opposing the unilateral declaration of an independent state by the Palestinians

Votes in support: 98

Hagel: Voted yes

APRIL 1998

Letter: Asking President Bill Clinton not to pressure Israel into accepting a peace proposal with the Palestinians “which is known to be unacceptable.”

Number of signatories: 81

Hagel: Did not sign

Letters and signatories obtained from the archives of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee and the Jewish Virtual Library.

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Relationships Yossi Vardi Credits Pushy Jewish Mother for His Startup Success

    Yossi Vardi Credits Pushy Jewish Mother for His Startup Success

    Millionaire entrepreneur Yossi Vardi credited his success in start-ups to his Jewish mother continuously pushing him to do better, Daily Mail reported on Thursday. “Jewish mothers are never satisfied and nothing is ever good enough,” he said, adding that his mother, who died 15 years ago, used to compare him with his cousins and say he was “an idiot.” “For most of my life I have been trying to show her I’m not,” he continued. “I keep on trying even now.” Vardi, […]

    Read more →
  • Theater US & Canada Seth Rogen Unveils New Christmas Movie — ‘Will Open on Thanksgiving, Made by Jews’ (VIDEO)

    Seth Rogen Unveils New Christmas Movie — ‘Will Open on Thanksgiving, Made by Jews’ (VIDEO)

    Famed actor Seth Rogen on Tuesday unveiled with typical comic fanfare the trailer for his new Christmas film. The movie “was made by Jews… and opens on Thanksgiving,” Rogen pointed out on Twitter. The Night Before tells the tale of three “ride or die homies” celebrating one last debauchery-filled Christmas Eve reunion before they become too busy to keep up their annual tradition. In an effort to make the night as memorable as possible, they set out to find the “Nutcracka Ball – the […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Jewish History Art Can Inspire Faith; It Can Also Empower Destructive Ideologies

    Art Can Inspire Faith; It Can Also Empower Destructive Ideologies

    A June 2015 art exhibit, “The Transformative Power of Art,” at the United Nations headquarters in New York City, harnessed the universal language of art to convey an important message: “Our fragile Mother Earth faces the devastating consequences of climate change, a defining challenge of our time.” The exhibit also included sixteen portraits of people from all over the world who have “contributed to the common good of humanity in one way or another and have transformed the way we […]

    Read more →
  • Israel Sports Israeli Muslim Cage Fighter Says He’s Proud to Fight Under Jewish State’s Flag

    Israeli Muslim Cage Fighter Says He’s Proud to Fight Under Jewish State’s Flag

    A 32-year-old Circassian Israeli Muslim Mixed Martial Arts fighter from Abu Ghosh says he takes pride in fighting under the Israeli flag, Israel’s Walla reported on Sunday. Like most Circassian Israelis, Jackie “the Punishment” Gosh was born Sunni Muslim. He became observant about eight years ago, and is now scrupulous in following his religion’s tenets, praying five times a day and fasting during the holy month of Ramadan. Gosh is also very proud of his Israeli nationality, and sees no contradiction between […]

    Read more →
  • Israel Music New Mark Skinner Documentary Explores Jewish, Arab Rap Scene in Israel (VIDEO)

    New Mark Skinner Documentary Explores Jewish, Arab Rap Scene in Israel (VIDEO)

    A new documentary explores the lives and work of Jewish and Arab rappers in Israel and how the ongoing conflict in the region has impacted their lyrics, the U.K.’s Jewish Chronicle reported on Thursday. Hip Hop in the Holy Land is a six-part series co-directed by Mike Skinner, the British frontman of hip-hop group The Streets, and produced by Noisey, a music channel published by Vice news. The first episode, published last week, shows Skinner meeting with Tamer Nafar, the founder of one of […]

    Read more →
  • Sports US & Canada 49ers Running Back Jarryd Hayne Apologizes for ‘Hurtful’ Jesus Tweets

    49ers Running Back Jarryd Hayne Apologizes for ‘Hurtful’ Jesus Tweets

    New 49ers running back and Australian rugby star Jarryd Hayne apologized on Wednesday for a tweet in which he raised the age-old myth that Jews were historically responsible for Jesus Christ’s death. Reaching out to his Jewish fans, and the chairman of the B’nai B’rith Anti-Defamation Commission, Hayne tweeted: “To the Jewish community @DvirAbramovich #WeAreAllOne.” Underneath, he keenly included a screenshot of a text message to elaborate on his apology: “I sincerely apologize for my tweets on July 1. I […]

    Read more →
  • Theater Israeli Actress Gal Gadot Recalls Being ‘Extremely Surprised’ at Winning Miss Israel Contest

    Israeli Actress Gal Gadot Recalls Being ‘Extremely Surprised’ at Winning Miss Israel Contest

    Israeli actress Gal Gadot reminisced about her childhood in Israel during an interview published in this month’s edition of Vanity Fair. “I don’t remember this, but my mom told me that when I was three they threw a party on the rooftop of the house. They put me to bed, and I heard people coming into the house and no one came to me. I went to the rooftop and took a hose and I started to spray water on everyone, just […]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Features Wounded Israeli Soldiers Unite With American Veterans to Help Their ‘Brothers for Life’ Heal (INTERVIEW)

    Wounded Israeli Soldiers Unite With American Veterans to Help Their ‘Brothers for Life’ Heal (INTERVIEW)

    An Israeli organization is helping wounded U.S. veterans move past their physical and psychological challenges by connecting them with injured Israeli soldiers who understand what they’ve been through. “What we discovered very early is that there’s no ‘professional, psychiatrist, social worker’ or anything like that [or] pills that can come even close to helping a soldier who fought in combat, who was wounded, who lost his friends. No one can help him like another person who’s been through exactly what he has,” Rabbi Chaim Levine, […]

    Read more →