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The tale of Hagel and Haifa

by Speranza ( 71 Comments › )
Filed under Anti-semitism, Israel at January 4th, 2013 - 7:00 am

Hagel definitely has a problem with Jews.

by Adam Kredo

A popular USO port in the Israeli city of Haifa was the center of a bitter dispute over U.S. funding for overseas operations in the late 1980s.

Chuck Hagel, the one-time Republican Senator from Nebraska who President Barack Obama may nominate as the next secretary of defense, led the controversial charge to shutter the port during his tenure with the organization.

Hagel, who served as president and CEO of the World USO from 1987 to 1990, expressed intense opposition to the USO Haifa Center during a tumultuous 1989 meeting with Jewish leaders, according to multiple sources involved in the fight to keep the post open.

“He said to me, ‘Let the Jews pay for it’,” said Marsha Halteman, director for military and law enforcement programs at the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA), which led the battle to keep USO Haifa operational.

Hagel’s campaign to close the storied USO port struck many observers, including the U.S. Navy and congressional leaders, as misguided. Those same critics argue today that Hagel’s animosity toward the Jewish state leaves him unsuited to be the nation’s next defense secretary.

“He essentially told us that if we wanted to keep the USO [in Haifa] open—and when I say ‘we’, he meant ‘the Jews’—he said the Jews could pay for it,” said Halteman, who recalled being taken aback by the comment.

“I told him at the time that I found his comments to be anti-Semitic,” she said. “He was playing into that dual loyalty thing.”

[.......]

“The Jewish lobby intimidates a lot of people” on Capitol Hill, Hagel told Middle East expert Aaron David Miller during a 2008 interview.

Jewish community members in Nebraska, where Hagel served for 12 years as Senator, have recalled him as particularly hostile.

Hagel once dubbed a Jewish Republican activist as “nothing but a f–king tool for AIPAC,” according to reports.

Those present at that 1989 meeting over Haifa described the encounter as an indicator of what they said is Hagel’s hostility towards the Jewish state.

“An indication of Hagel’s early less-than-warm feelings toward Israel came in the late 1980s when, as the president of the USO, he sought to defund the popular USO facility in the Israeli port city of Haifa,” JINSA wrote in a recent newsletter.

The USO port in Haifa quickly became a popular destination for the U.S. Navy’s Sixth Fleet upon its opening in 1984. American soldiers and sailors were treated to tours of Israel and mingled with Haifa’s eclectic population.

The port soon became a symbol of the burgeoning military relationship between the U.S. and Israel.

[.......]

But budgetary constraints at the USO in the late 1980s led Hagel to put the Haifa port on the chopping block, sources said.

“There were a few USOs that showed up on his list as being in trouble financially and that he thought he needed to cut,” Halteman said.

“But even at the time, there were not budgetary problems at the Haifa USO,” she said. “In fact it was thriving. Hundreds of people were going through those doors weekly.”

When news of Hagel’s decision to close the port reached Capitol Hill, a delegation of lawmakers and others expressed fierce opposition, according to news reports.

“The closure decision came under heavy fire from the citizens of Haifa, the Sixth Fleet and American-Jewish circles,” the Jerusalem Post reported at the time.

Nearly everyone but Hagel supported the base, according to one Jewish communal official who is familiar with the controversy.

“The backlash was so vociferous—including from the Navy and from Congress—that not only did the closing get reversed but [Hagel] had to expand the base,” said the source.

However, sources said Hagel refused to permit the USO, which was teetering on bankruptcy at the time, to fund fully the Haifa port.

“Chuck Hagel said the Haifa port is costing the U.S. too much [and] that if the Jews wanted one, the Jews should do the fundraising,” said one source involved in protecting the port’s funding.

[.......]

“As it turns out there was a Jewish member of the USO board who led the efforts to raise the money to keep the USO open, so the Jews did raise the money,” said JINSA’s Halteman.

Nearly $60,000 was raised to renovate and expand the port.

Once the money was secured Hagel altered his position on the port, sources said.

[......]

“The [Jewish] community support given by residents, as well as 200 protest letters, mainly from American-Jewish circles, had influenced the decision. … Hagel noted that the protesters had backed their demands with funds, and some $60,000 had already been raised to support the centre,” according to the report.

[......]

“What could possibly drive someone to try to burn political capital on something like this, except a real dedication to undermining U.S.-Israeli military-to-military contacts,” said the Jewish official quoted above.

“My suspicion today was that [Hagel] didn’t like this great development in the U.S.-Israel relationship,” added another source who was involved in lobbying to keep the Haifa hub open.

“You look back and say, ‘It makes sense’,” added the source. “He wasn’t going to push for a deeper strategic relationship.”

A USO spokesperson said the organization has “no records of any discussion to close the USO Center in Haifa while Charles Hagel was CEO and President of the USO from 1987 to 1990″ and USO staff “are still working to determine when after 2000 the USO Center in Haifa closed.”

“We have no one here that can confirm the discussion about USO Haifa as reported in your story,” the spokesperson said.

Read the rest - Potential SecDef nominee tried to shut down USO port in Israeli city of Haifa, sources say

 

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71 Responses to “The tale of Hagel and Haifa”
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  1. Speranza
    1 | January 4, 2013 7:01 am

    Hagel really is a nasty piece of work and will fit in perfectly with the Obama administration.


  2. Speranza
    2 | January 4, 2013 7:02 am

    So will John Kerry.


  3. 3 | January 4, 2013 7:12 am

    @ Speranza:

    Hagel is an anti-Semite. That is a quality that Obama looks for in his cabinet-level positions. He shares Obama’s view of the Jews, and the State of Israel in particular.


  4. Speranza
    4 | January 4, 2013 7:15 am

    Iron Fist wrote:

    @ Speranza:
    Hagel is an anti-Semite. That is a quality that Obama looks for in his cabinet-level positions. He shares Obama’s view of the Jews, and the State of Israel in particular.

    Sad but true. Someone wrote, “Why would an anti Semite such as Pat Buchanan support Chuck Hagel”? The answer is obvious.


  5. Speranza
    5 | January 4, 2013 7:19 am

    Closing down a USO because it is located in Haifa. He is a real d-bag.


  6. Da_Beerfreak
    6 | January 4, 2013 7:21 am

    Obama administration == Recipe for Disaster.


  7. Speranza
    7 | January 4, 2013 8:48 am

    Da_Beerfreak wrote:

    Obama administration == Recipe for Disaster.

    It is Socialism at its worst -- with a strong dose of totalitarianism.


  8. Da_Beerfreak
    8 | January 4, 2013 9:00 am

    Speranza wrote:

    Da_Beerfreak wrote:

    Obama administration == Recipe for Disaster.

    It is Socialism at its worst — with a strong dose of totalitarianism.

    Somewhere in the World someone is going to miscalculate and all Hell is going to breakout. Weak leadership is worse than no leadership. With this regime we get the worst of both.


  9. 9 | January 4, 2013 9:16 am

    Speranza wrote:

    Sad but true. Someone wrote, “Why would an anti Semite such as Pat Buchanan support Chuck Hagel”? The answer is obvious.

    You mean Pat Buchanan, the Hitler apologist?

    I think the most recent precipitous decline in the public’s perception of the GOP can be traced directly to his “Culture War” speech at the “92 Republican Convention and he’s been plumbing the depths ever since.


  10. 10 | January 4, 2013 9:25 am

    @ MacDuff:

    think the most recent precipitous decline in the public’s perception of the GOP can be traced directly to his “Culture War” speech at the “92 Republican Convention and he’s been plumbing the depths ever si

    nce.

    That speech damaged the GOP in large parts of the country. They still have not recovered and jerks like Santorum do not help.


  11. theoutsider
    11 | January 4, 2013 9:47 am

    @ Rodan:
    That speech was devastating to the Republicans in California. After that I had many brothers, sisters, cousins become Democrats.


  12. Guggi
    12 | January 4, 2013 9:47 am

    U.S. economy added 155,000 jobs in December; unemployment rate at 7.8 percent

    The U.S. economy added jobs 155,000 in December, the Labor Department said Friday morning.

    The Labor Department said the unemployment rate stayed at 7.8 percent last month. November’s rate was revised higher from an initially reported 7.7 percent.

    And how many have left labor force ultimalty ? Labor force is at its low since Carter.


  13. 13 | January 4, 2013 9:49 am

    theoutsider wrote:

    @ Rodan:
    That speech was devastating to the Republicans in California. After that I had many brothers, sisters, cousins become Democrats.

    It was very damaging. The GOP was actually pretty strong in Queens, NY and Long Island. Now it’s Democrat territory. You are right, it was Buchanan’s Culture war crap that made California go Democrat. That said,. the Democrats have done California no good.


  14. Guggi
    14 | January 4, 2013 9:54 am

    US Labor Force Participation Rate Chart


  15. 15 | January 4, 2013 9:58 am

    @ Guggi:

    I was watching Stuart Varney and Charles Payne on Fox News this morning and Payne made an interesting point. The Labor Participation Rate is actually going up among Baby Boomers, yet is dropping dramatically among young people.

    Not good, not good at all.


  16. Speranza
    16 | January 4, 2013 10:01 am

    MacDuff wrote:

    I think the most recent precipitous decline in the public’s perception of the GOP can be traced directly to his “Culture War” speech at the “92 Republican Convention and he’s been plumbing the depths ever since.

    We park our car in the same garage. That speech was a disaster.


  17. 17 | January 4, 2013 10:02 am

    Rodan wrote:

    It was very damaging. The GOP was actually pretty strong in Queens, NY and Long Island. Now it’s Democrat territory. You are right, it was Buchanan’s Culture war crap that made California go Democrat. That said,. the Democrats have done California no good.

    Yeah, in retrospect, the “Culture War” crap, combined with the ascendency of Bill Clinton, combined with enormous demographic shifts, proved to be a “perfect storm” which has left us waterlogged ever since.


  18. theoutsider
    18 | January 4, 2013 10:08 am

    @ Rodan:
    I really thought that after the 2008 election, the Republican party would get back to basics. Less government. More Freedom But, instead they’ve nominated a bunch of creeps for office, Akin, Mourdock, O’Donnell. What do they stand for?


  19. 19 | January 4, 2013 10:10 am

    @ MacDuff:

    The GOP still refuses to adpat to reality. You have the Establishment that do not know how to brush their own teeth and the Purists who love the martyrdom of defeat.


  20. 20 | January 4, 2013 10:12 am

    theoutsider wrote:

    @ Rodan:
    I really thought that after the 2008 election, the Republican party would get back to basics. Less government. More Freedom But, instead they’ve nominated a bunch of creeps for office, Akin, Mourdock, O’Donnell. What do they stand for?

    I wish could I disagree with you, but I can’t.


  21. 21 | January 4, 2013 10:13 am

    @ MacDuff:

    Not good, not good at all

    .

    The Republicans are too stupid to play divide and conquer with younger voters.


  22. 22 | January 4, 2013 10:14 am

    The Haifa USO was the only place to find US domestic beer back in the early 90s Hagel’s actions and considering that I wouldn’t have been able to bum Budweisers of off US sailors duty my time there if he. Had his way gives him near infidel status in my eyes but seriously now where is CW? I am currently eating a burrito in a parking lot in his township on the way to a funshop to search for AR parts


  23. 23 | January 4, 2013 10:18 am

    Rodan wrote:

    @ MacDuff:

    The GOP still refuses to adpat to reality. You have the Establishment that do not know how to brush their own teeth and the Purists who love the martyrdom of defeat.

    “Small l” libertarianism needs to supplant conservatism in order to bridge the demographic chasm with which we find ourselves. The Left is becoming more authoritarian and has a wide-open flank that is “liberty”.


  24. 24 | January 4, 2013 10:19 am

    @ Scott Madsen:

    Geez -- good luck with finding AR anything.


  25. 25 | January 4, 2013 10:26 am

    @ Scott Madsen:

    He’s at work.


  26. 26 | January 4, 2013 10:27 am

    @ MacDuff:

    “Small l” libertarianism needs to supplant conservatism in order to bridge the demographic chasm with which we find ourselves. The Left is becoming more authoritarian and has a wide-open flank that is “liberty”.

    The sad part is that many “conservatives” have an authoritarian world view as well. There really is an opening for a liberty agenda of Individualism.


  27. 27 | January 4, 2013 10:32 am

    Rodan wrote:

    The sad part is that many “conservatives” have an authoritarian world view as well. There really is an opening for a liberty agenda of Individualism.

    Libertarianism is the natural evolution of American conservative philosophy and the natural enemy of authoritarianism of any stripe.


  28. theoutsider
    28 | January 4, 2013 10:33 am

    @ Rodan:
    I’m a liberal, and you’re a conservative, but our foreign policys are pretty much the same, and domestically, not so far off.


  29. 29 | January 4, 2013 10:34 am

    @ Rodan:
    Thanks. Mike C yeah I knows and I am pretty well set but am big on redundancy and have a lead on some surplus barrios and extensiions


  30. 30 | January 4, 2013 10:35 am

    Mike C. wrote:

    @ Scott Madsen:
    Geez — good luck with finding AR anything.

    I bet there’s a huge backlogs on Ars.


  31. 31 | January 4, 2013 10:36 am

    Libertarianism is where practical conservatives and reasonable liberals can find a great deal of common ground.


  32. lobo91
    32 | January 4, 2013 10:43 am

    MacDuff wrote:

    Libertarianism is where practical conservatives and reasonable liberals can find a great deal of common ground.

    Anyone who voted for Obama--especially the second time--has given up any claim to being a “reasonable liberal,” though.


  33. 33 | January 4, 2013 10:44 am

    @ Rodan:

    Forget ARs, AK-47s, SKSs and semi-auto pistols -- revolvers and shotguns are starting to vanish as well. If it shoots, there’s a run on it.


  34. lobo91
    34 | January 4, 2013 10:49 am

    Mike C. wrote:

    @ Rodan:

    Forget ARs, AK-47s, SKSs and semi-auto pistols — revolvers and shotguns are starting to vanish as well. If it shoots, there’s a run on it.

    And if there’s no ammo for it, it’s not all that useful.


  35. 35 | January 4, 2013 10:54 am

    @ lobo91:

    Obama is the best gun salesman in history. By the time his term in office is over with, there will be 400 million guns in America.


  36. Speranza
    36 | January 4, 2013 10:57 am

    My paycheck is $35 smaller. Thank you Obama!


  37. Speranza
    37 | January 4, 2013 10:59 am

    MacDuff wrote:

    Libertarianism is where practical conservatives and reasonable liberals can find a great deal of common ground.

    I am more and more libertarian with a small “l”.


  38. heysoos
    38 | January 4, 2013 10:59 am

    Iron Fist wrote:

    @ lobo91:
    Obama is the best gun salesman in history. By the time his term in office is over with, there will be 400 million guns in America.

    liberals…
    2+2=5
    hahaha!
    BO is an idiot


  39. heysoos
    39 | January 4, 2013 11:02 am

    BO and his bozo bitch, Feinstein will have this country so gunned up that tv adds will show the family at the beach with dad’s AK propped up on the lounge


  40. 40 | January 4, 2013 11:03 am

    @ lobo91:

    My old boss in Houston told me yesterday that there is no .223/5.56 mm left for sale in the city. None.


  41. 41 | January 4, 2013 11:04 am

    Speranza wrote:

    I am more and more libertarian with a small “l”.

    Truly, we are parking our car in the same garage.


  42. 42 | January 4, 2013 11:05 am

    heysoos wrote:

    BO and his bozo bitch, Feinstein will have this country so gunned up that tv adds will show the family at the beach with dad’s, mom’s and the kids’ AK

    s

    propped up on the lounge

    FTFY


  43. 43 | January 4, 2013 11:05 am

    @ Mike C.:

    Screwed that up…


  44. heysoos
    44 | January 4, 2013 11:07 am

    Mike C. wrote:

    @ Mike C.:
    Screwed that up…

    in a fashionable hot pink?


  45. 45 | January 4, 2013 11:12 am

    @ heysoos:

    They make both AKs and ARs in “Hello Kitty” models…


  46. heysoos
    46 | January 4, 2013 11:15 am

    Iron Fist wrote:

    @ heysoos:
    They make both AKs and ARs in “Hello Kitty” models…

    and those sexy see-through banana clips!…whoa


  47. Calo
    47 | January 4, 2013 11:18 am

    Iron Fist wrote:

    @ heysoos:

    They make both AKs and ARs in “Hello Kitty” models…

    I knew somebody would know that.

    I just didn’t expect it to be you, IF :shock:


  48. 48 | January 4, 2013 11:23 am

    The Illinois Senate adjourned without voting on thier gun ban law. Apparently they didn’t have the votes to pass it. I hope that the US Senate finds itself in a similar state.


  49. 49 | January 4, 2013 11:23 am

    @ Calo:

    I want my wife to get one :P


  50. 50 | January 4, 2013 11:23 am

    There are shops that will put a custom finish on any weapon you want, in any design/color. With a few skills and some practice, you can do it yourself -- I know people that have. Personally, I’ll stick with the way it came from the factory, but different strokes and all that…


  51. 51 | January 4, 2013 11:24 am

    Iron Fist wrote:

    The Illinois Senate adjourned without voting on thier gun ban law. Apparently they didn’t have the votes to pass it. I hope that the US Senate finds itself in a similar state.

    They bombed out. A hopeful sign…


  52. unclassifiable
    52 | January 4, 2013 11:26 am

    As a reference I included a link to the text of Buchanan’s speech below:

    http://web.archive.org/web/20071018035401/http://www.buchanan.org/pa-92-0817-rnc.html

    This does not constitute an endorsement of the views expressed therein.


  53. 53 | January 4, 2013 11:29 am

    @ Mike C.:

    If they can’t pass it in Blue Illinois, I hold out hope that they can’t pass anything in the US Senate. There are something like 14 Democrat Senators up for re-election in 2014. They don’t want to vote on this issue any way shape form or fashion. Any way they vote will cost them votes. I’d bet they wish the issue would just go back to sleep.


  54. theoutsider
    54 | January 4, 2013 11:30 am

    @ Speranza:
    You’re paycheck was inflated over the past year. Thank Obama.


  55. heysoos
    55 | January 4, 2013 11:31 am

    looks like the Sandy Pork bill is being divided into two separate votes, today the $9b in aid, then $51b in payola the 15th…
    this is a good thing


  56. 56 | January 4, 2013 11:31 am

    Iron Fist wrote:

    @ lobo91:
    Obama is the best gun salesman in history. By the time his term in office is over with, there will be 400 million guns in America.

    The Gun Industry must love Obama!


  57. Speranza
    57 | January 4, 2013 11:34 am

    theoutsider wrote:

    @ Speranza:
    You’re paycheck was inflated over the past year. Thank Obama.

    No I thank Bush for that.


  58. 58 | January 4, 2013 11:35 am

    @ theoutsider:

    All money belongs to the State, they are just letting you use it? Do you believe in any private property? Or is it all the State’s, and we are just allowed to use it?


  59. 59 | January 4, 2013 11:35 am

    New thread.


  60. Speranza
    60 | January 4, 2013 11:35 am

    unclassifiable wrote:

    As a reference I included a link to the text of Buchanan’s speech below:
    http://web.archive.org/web/20071018035401/http://www.buchanan.org/pa-92-0817-rnc.html
    This does not constitute an endorsement of the views expressed therein.

    Twenty years later that speech still makes my skin crawl.


  61. 61 | January 4, 2013 11:36 am

    @ Iron Fist:

    Do you believe in any private property? Or is it all the State’s, and we are just allowed to use it?

    You probably answered the question for him! :lol:


  62. 62 | January 4, 2013 11:38 am

    @ Speranza:

    That destroyed the Republican’s Party appeal in the Northeast and Upper Midwest.


  63. unclassifiable
    63 | January 4, 2013 11:44 am

    @ Speranza:

    While that maybe many folks visceral reaction to it, it still does us no good not to look at it in the daylight.

    There are a great deal of folks who call themselves conservative who see no problem with this speech.

    As a matter of fact I often see a list of anywhere from 20 -- 40 points which are identified as tatics that Communist would use to undermine the USA. Many of those points are in this speech.

    Many folks are afraid that people on the right no matter what stripe will tear ourselves apart by addressing these issues. I for one think that is about high time that we get started because the sooner we do the quicker we can find some common ground and start to rebuild.

    I used to be in AA and recognition was the first step in the process.

    Hi, I’m unclassifiable and I am a…


  64. buzzsawmonkey
    64 | January 4, 2013 12:57 pm

    theoutsider wrote:

    You’re paycheck was inflated over the past year. Thank Obama.

    Your grammar is pathetic. Thank the leftist teachers’ unions, heavy supporters of the Democrats.


  65. buzzsawmonkey
    65 | January 4, 2013 12:58 pm

    heysoos wrote:

    and those sexy see-through banana clips!…whoa

    Weren’t the “Banana Clips” a kiddie TV show?


  66. darkwords
    66 | January 4, 2013 1:52 pm

    @ 11 theoutsider: You’re fabricating. Better to be accurate. Serves you and everyone around you better. Fabrications are for sociopaths, car salesmen, and politicians and pedophiles.


  67. darkwords
    67 | January 4, 2013 1:54 pm

    @ 15 MacDuff: Young kids want all the bling right now, today. If they don’t get it they go all OWO, Occupy Welfare Office.


  68. darkwords
    68 | January 4, 2013 1:56 pm

    @ 18 theoutsider: You’re projecting a negative mindset based on what you read. The names you list are ones proposed by the media as representative of the GoP. I would propose a more functional set of critters. I agree on the overall point that the mainstream GoP today is a dinosaur headed for extinction.


  69. darkwords
    69 | January 4, 2013 1:58 pm

    @ 36 Speranza: Well he did put it to good use. I hear he toasted a thanks to Speranza at his Hawaii hideout for a hotel priced latte.


  70. darkwords
    70 | January 4, 2013 1:58 pm

    @ 38 heysoos: The square root of SIEU is JELLO


  71. darkwords
    71 | January 4, 2013 2:00 pm

    @ 54 theoutsider: That is true. I think the original need is still there for OBama. but he is acting like Geithner now.


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