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January 10, 2013 4:09 pm
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Hagel-Chaired Think Tank: ‘Post-Mullah’ Iran Should be Viewed as ‘Natural Partner’ for U.S.

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Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khāmenei, Superme Leader of Iran. Photo: Sajed.ir.

The Atlantic Council, a think tank chaired by defense secretary nominee Chuck Hagel which last month published a column titled “Israel’s Apartheid Policy,” during the same month predicted that Iran “should be viewed as a potential natural partner” for the U.S.

The Washington Free Beacon reported that the think tank’s December policy paper titled “Envisioning 2030: U.S. Strategy for a Post-Western World,” which was not written by Hagel himself, predicted the following of an Iranian regime that continues to forge ahead with its nuclear program and bankroll both Hamas and Hezbollah terrorism: “A post-mullah dominated government shedding Shia [Muslim] ideology could easily return to being a net contributor to stability by 2030.”

The Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC) has called President Barack Obama’s Hagel’s nomination of Hagel “a blow to U.S.-Israel relations, to the President’s relationship with the American Jewish community, and to U.S. security in the Middle East.”

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Glenn Kessler, author of the Washington Post‘s “Fact Checker” column, noted that Hagel told the Associated Press after his 1998 Middle East visit that the Israeli government “essentially continues to play games.” Commenting on Palestinian terrorism, the former Nebraska senator said “Desperate men do desperate things when you take hope away.”

Additionally, in 2002, Hagel told CNN regarding Yasser Arafat that he would not “single out the Palestinians and Arafat as the real problem” in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict because “it doesn’t help when we take public sides on this and castigate and assign all of the responsibility and all the blame to one side.”

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