Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel will reportedly propose a Pentagon budget that will shrink the U.S. Army to its smallest number since 1940 and eliminate an entire class of Air Force attack jets.
The New York Times reported late Sunday that Hagel’s proposal, which will be released to lawmakers and the public on Monday, will call for a reduction in size of the military that will leave it capable of waging war, but unable to carry out protracted occupations of foreign territory, as in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Under Hagel’s plan, the number of troops in the Army will drop to between 440,000 and 450,000, a reduction of at least 120,000 soldiers from its post-Sept.11 peak.
Officials told the Times that Hagel’s plan has been endorsed by the Joint Chiefs of Staff and protects funding for Special Operations forces and cyberwarfare. It also calls for the Navy to maintain all eleven of its aircraft carriers currently in operation. However, the budget proposal mandates the elimination of the entire fleet of Air Force A-10 attack aircraft, as well as the retiring of the U-2 spy plane, a stalwart of Cold War operations.
The budget plan does keep money for the F-35 warplane, a project which has been beset by delays and criticism over design flaws.
Other characteristics of the budget will likely draw further ire from veterans groups and members of Congress. The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that Hagel would recommend a limit on military pay raises, higher fees for health-care benefits, less generous housing allowances, and a one-year freeze on raises for top military brass.
“Personnel costs reflect some 50% of the Pentagon budget and cannot be exempted in the context of the significant cuts the department is facing,” Defense Department spokesman Adm. John Kirby told the Journal. “Secretary Hagel has been clear that, while we do not want to, we ultimately must slow the growth of military pay and compensation.”
“This is a real uphill battle with Congress,” Mieke Eoyang, director of the National Security Program at Third Way, a centrist think tank in Washington, told the Journal
“God bless [Hagel] for trying to get a handle on these costs,” she said. “But in this political environment, in an election year, it’s going to be hard for members of Congress to accept anything that’s viewed as taking benefits away from troops.”
Y’all, (the proper way to address a group of people), Know that Ted Cruz, and a few other Conservatives are fighting like Hell to derail Obamacare. Naturally, this has interrupted MSNBS host Chris “Crazy Legs” Matthews a great deal. Weasel Zippers has the sad, but all too predictable result, a Matthews meltdown, it is like a regular meltdown, only bigger and more pathetic. As a public service I, who am merely a “blogger”, will translate Matthews diatribe.
Chris Matthews let loose Tuesday night with what he really thinks of Republican senator Ted Cruz, the face of the defund Obamacare movement. Matthews and Democratic congressman Jim Moran called him dangerous, with Matthews gong so far as to declare he is a threat to the entirety of the American political system. [...]
Now, when Matthews says Cruz is dangerous, what he really means is that Cruz is Reaganesque, and that Matthews is deathly afraid of Cruz because Cruz, like Reagan has the ability to speak directly to the people, thus influencing the people to understand how bad Obamacare is. Matthews, being an elitist, naturally detests any and all who would oppose his Neo-Marxist ideology.
He recalled how Cruz’s political debut was his accusations about Chuck Hagel‘s extremist ties in a very “Joe McCarthy fashion,” calling Cruz “totally and utterly destructive” and dismissing the idea he’s educated a single person about the health care law.
Whenever a leftist like Matthews invokes the name McCarthy they are attempting to smear a Conservative who has an effective message. Do not allow yourself to be taken in by this hateful rhetoric. Remember this Leftists attack Conservatives not because they disagree with them, which they of course do, but because they FEAR them!
Moran said Cruz is “ignorant of the facts” and predicted he won’t be able to accomplish much after these “antics.” Matthews noticed how Cruz is “sneering” every time he talks about an issue, calling the Texas senator a “threat” to the American political system, and while he admitted using the word “terrorist” would be a little strong, he did leave it dangling over the conversation.
What Matthews and Moran, who is so crooked he has to screw his pants on are really doing here is attempting to further smear Cruz by calling him ignorant and accusing Cruz of “antics”. How rich, Matthews, who engages in antics and hyperbole like no other throwing that charge at Ted Cruz.
Look, all you really have to know about Matthews is that he looks like Newt Gingrich’s retarded little brother, and jabbers like an incoherent drunk on a bar stool at the diviest bar you can imagine. No, wait, that is not fair. An incoherent drunk makes more sense that Matthews does.
In short, Cruz scares the living Hell out of the Left, and the douche bags that make up the GOP establishment.
Because, McCarthy, was, as Stacy McCain points out, was RIGHT! Oh, and so is Ted Cruz
Democrats and the major news media — but I repeat myself – have decided that Texas Sen. Ted Cruz’s opposition to the Chuck Hagel nomination makes him the “New McCarthy.”
And they say that like it’s a bad thing.
Sen. Joseph McCarthy has been unjustly and dishonestly maligned for so long that even many conservative Republicans nowadays use “McCarthyism” as a slur, without any real understanding of who the man was, or what he was trying to accomplish.
Intellectuals who today think of themselves as the rightful heirs of William F. Buckley Jr. often seem to forget that the second book Buckley wrote, after God and Man at Yale, was McCarthy and His Enemies, which Buckley co-authored with his brother-in-law Brent Bozell (father of Brent Bozell III, who is today head of the Media Research Center). Buckley knew, as do all honest and intelligent students of the Cold War era, that even if one stipulates McCarthy made mistakes and had unfortunate personality traits, he was really a better man than his vindictive critics, and certainly more sincerely patriotic than the Communist enemies he sought to expose.
Ah, but for the accurate teaching of history! The Left’s version of history is always, edited, re-written, spun, sanitized, or completely fallacious. Sadly, as Stacy points out, many folks are victimized by the Left’s “re-invented history”. This is a tremendous post go read the whole thing, but here is a small sample of how the Left uses “invented history”
McCarthy vs. ‘McCarthyism’— Propagandists of the Left, including journalists and academics, have made Joe McCarthy a symbol of things for which he was not even remotely responsible. Joe McCarthy did not create a “Red Scare.” Concerns about Communist penetration of the federal government, and about Soviet espionage, existed before anyone outside Wisconsin had ever heard of Joe McCarthy. He was not responsible for “blacklisting” anyone in Hollywood or getting Communist teachers fired from public schools. Investigations of Communist subversion undertaken by the FBI and the House Committee on Un-American Activities preceded Joe McCarthy’s arrival in the Senate and continued for years after McCarthy was dead and buried in a Wisconsin grave. However, by demonizing McCarthy, and making him a scarecrow symbol for alleged wrongs that he had nothing to do with, leftists have attached to McCarthy’s name a radioactive taint that makes it difficult for people to separate the complex Man from the simplistic Myth.
Bingo. the Left habitually uses this tactic to smear, and demonize its opponents. The Tea Party, Conservatives, the NRA, Christians, gun owners, etc. They attach such stigmas to any topic they do not wish to be challenged on, that many fear even broaching those topics.
Secretary of defense nominee Chuck Hagel said Israel is on its way to becoming an apartheid state during an April 9, 2010, appearance at Rutgers University, according to a contemporaneous account by an attendee.
Hagel also accused Israel of violating U.N. resolutions, called for U.S.-designated terrorist organization Hamas to be included in any peace negotiations, and described Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a “radical,” according to the source.
Kenneth Wagner, who attended the 2010 speech while a Rutgers University law student, provided the Washington Free Beacon with an email he sent during the event to a contact at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. The email is time-stamped April 9, 2010, at 11:37 AM.
“I am sitting in a lecture by Chuck Hagel at Rutgers,” Wagner wrote in the email. “He basically said that Israel has violated every UN resolution since 1967, that Israel has violated its agreements with the quartet, that it was risking becoming an apartheid state if it didn’t allow the Palestinians to form a state. He said that the settlements were getting close to the point where a contiguous Palestinian state would be impossible.”
“He said that he [thought] that Netanyahu was a radical and that even [former Israeli foreign minister Tzipi] Livni, who was hard nosed thought he was too radical and so wouldn’t join in a coalition [government] with him… He said that Hamas has to be brought in to any peace negotiation,” Wagner wrote.
AIPAC had no comment.
Wagner said the remarks were made during the Q&A session. The speech took place at the Rutgers School of Law in Newark.
Wagner, a pro-Israel activist, reiterated the account in an interview with the Free Beacon and called Hagel’s comments “pretty shocking.”
“I was very surprised at his attitude because I had been listening to politicians speak about the situation in the Middle East and the U.S. Israel relationship for about two decades,” Wagner told the Free Beacon. “And it was probably the most negative thing I’d ever heard anybody in elected office say.”
The news of the comments given during the 2010 speech comes at a time when the embattled secretary of defense nominee has been forced to respond to a report that he called the State Department an adjunct of the Israeli foreign ministry during the Q&A portion of a 2007 speech at Rutgers.
The Free Beacon reported Thursday on a contemporaneous account of another speech then-Senator Hagel gave at Rutgers in 2007. The report, written by Hagel supporter and political consultant George Ajjan, claimed Hagel had described the U.S. Department of State as an extension of the Israeli government.
Sens. Lindsey Graham and Kelly Ayotte on Friday sent a letter to Hagel requesting an explanation of the alleged comments. The Anti-Defamation League also called on Hagel to explain, and the American Jewish Committee said, “Further Senate deliberation is called for before any final vote is taken.”
Hagel has disavowed the remarks and says he does not recall making them.
“I do not recall making any such statement, or ever making any similar statement,” he wrote in a reply letter to Graham and Ayotte on February 16. “I completely disavow the content of the alleged statement attributed to me.”
According to one of the 2007 event’s organizers, Hooshang Amirahmadi, who is currently running for president of Iran, Ajjan’s account of the 2007 speech is “complete nonsense.”
Amirahmadi told the Free Beacon that some of his “very good Jewish colleagues who are very pro-Israel” did not appear offended at any point during the speech.
The Daily Caller reported on Monday that Amirahmadi accepted funding grants from the Alavi Foundation, which federal law enforcement officials have called a front group for the Iranian regime.
Amirahmadi is also the head of the American Iranian Council, which awarded Hagel an expensive clock in 2002.
Another attendee at the 2007 speech, Rutgers Professor Charles Häberl said he is “certain” Hagel did not say the State Department was an adjunct of the Israeli government, BuzzFeed reported today.
When the Free Beacon contacted Häberl about the 2007 speech last Thursday, he said he was not the best person to talk to about the event.
“Have you been in touch with Hooshang Amirahmadi?” Häberl wrote in an email. “He’s the one who organized the event, and he would be the best situated to talk about it. At the time, I was just a lecturer.”
Meanwhile, Ajjan stood by his account and said he is the only person who has provided a written report from the time.
“If somebody comes out with a transcript and those words aren’t uttered, I’d be the first one to say, ‘My apologies. I wrote something down that was wrong – I misheard it, or I misreported it,’ if that’s the case,” Ajjan told the Washington Free Beacon.
“I’m a conscientious person,” Ajjan said. “When I was blogging at that time, I did my best to record things accurately… there’s no way that I would pick a phrase like ‘adjunct of the Israeli foreign ministry.’ That’s a pretty odd combination of words to use. I wouldn’t have just pulled those out of thin air.”
When asked about Häberl disputing his account, Ajjan said he wants to make it clear he is not trying to undermine Hagel’s confirmation or the Rutgers event. He said he is still a supporter of Hagel.
“I suppose [Häberl] thinks that I’m somehow trying to disparage Chuck Hagel or cast a dark shadow over his confirmation hearings. That’s not the case at all. And I certainly don’t wish to besmirch the people who organized the event,” said Ajjan. “I very much enjoyed the event, I appreciate the people who organized it.”
The Free Beacon is working to obtain transcript and video of Hagel’s comments during the question and answer sessions at Rutgers in both 2007 and 2010, and is continuing to speak to others who attended both events.
A representative for Hagel did not respond to a request for comment by press time.
Poor Chuck, his pathetic testimony before Congress is not his fault, he just cannot remember anything!
Chuck Hagel is disavowing a comment he reportedly made six years ago tying the State Department to Israel, according to South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham.
Graham announced on “Fox News Sunday” that Hagel sent him a letter, saying that he did not recall making the remark in a 2007 speech at Rutgers University. In that speech, the former Republican senator from Nebraska reportedly said the State Department was an adjunct of the Israeli foreign minister’s office. Graham, also a Republican, called that alleged remark “disturbing,” as critics said it was part of a pattern where President Barack Obama’s nominee to be the next secretary of defense has taken stances seen as hostile to Israel.
But Hagel has furiously sought to rebut criticism over Israel and appears to have done so in his letter to Graham, who had sought clarification.
“He did not recall saying that,” Graham said of Hagel’s letter. “He disavows saying that. … If that’s true, that would end that matter.”
“I will take him at his word,” Graham said, “until something else comes along.”
Come on Lindsey! Wake up! He is LYING. Good Freaking Grief, just when I was ready to say some good things about the Senator Graham he reverts back to Wimp Mode!
That is, after all, what PC is all about, it is also about thought control, intimidation, speech control, censorship, and creating an environment where the Left cannot be challenged. Stacy McCain elaborates
Yesterday, I saw Chris Matthews on MSNBC’s Hardball rant for 10 minutes about Sen. Ted Cruz as a latter-day Joe McCarthy for having dared to ask questions about possible ties between Hagel and foreign governments. Chuck Hagel isn’t just some random citizen who has been grabbed off the street for interrogation about his loyalties.
No, Chuck Hagel is under consideration as Secretary of Defense, and the Senate therefore has every right — indeed, it has a solemn duty — to investigate his associations with groups that seem rather secretive about their funding.
If I could give the biggest reason I started writing op-ed columns 17 years ago, and then created this venture with Ed Daley, I would say it was to stop the erosion of our liberty! PC is the number one source of that erosion, and I will be damned if I sit by and allow that to happen!