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A Refreshing Change from The RNC Party Line

Reported by Ellen - November 28, 2004

I'm far from being a fan of Chuck Hagel, the Republican Senator from Nebraska, but he earned my respect by speaking out against the Pentagon last night on After Hours with Cal Thomas.

Unlike the usual Republican guests (and most of the FOX hosts, too) Hagel was willing to speak bluntly and critically about mistakes he feels the Bush Administration has made in Iraq. He called Iraq "a mess" and blamed the mess on the fact that we "didn't have the manpower to do the things we needed to do whether it was securing ammo dumps or pipelines or whatever it was." He called the action in Fallujah a success but that the insurgency is "like holes springing up in a dyke," and that as we move our troops to one area, problems spring up elsewhere.

Then he took a not-so-subtle swipe at Donald Rumsfeld. Hagel said, "I trust (the tactical commanders) more than any general in the Pentagon, quite frankly. I trust them far more than our civilian leadership in the Pentagon. We should have been listening to them in Fallujah in April. They were absolutely opposed to pulling back. They said we were gonna have to go back in and it's going to be far more costly."

Comment: I suspect this signals the end of Rumsfeld's tenure in the Bush Administration and quite possibly the beginning of a draft.

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