Tuesday, January 15, 2013
Hagel Allies Coordinate Smear Campaign Against Critics, Emails Reveal.(FB).BY: Adam Kredo.
A group of anti-Israel activists and journalists are engaged in a coordinated campaign to stifle criticism of controversial secretary of defense nominee Chuck Hagel by attacking the former Republican senator’s critics, according to emails obtained by the Free Beacon.
Fenton communications chief executive officer David Fenton, the Atlantic’s national correspondent James Fallows, former diplomat Charles ‘Chas’ Freeman, Just Foreign Policy director Robert Naiman, and American Conservative founding editor Scott McConnell participated in a recent email exchange dedicated to silencing Hagel’s critics, the emails reveal.
The emailers targeted recent comments made by Elliott Abrams, a former Bush administration National Security Council adviser who said Hagel “seems to have some kind of problem with Jews,” a sentiment that has been echoed by several lawmakers and Jewish leaders.
“Elliot [sic] Abrams is an ardent armchair Zionist who thinks that a commitment to Israel is an essential qualification for public service in the United States,” wrote Freeman, a vociferous Israel critic who has dubbed Israel’s supporters in America a “fifth column.”
“Abrams doubts that Hagel has such a commitment. Abrams thus ‘has a problem’ with Hagel,” Freeman wrote, according to the Jan. 10 email chain obtained by the Free Beacon. “Abrams is a Jew. Ergo, he asserts, Jews have a problem with Hagel. Logically, therefore, Hagel has a problem with Jews. What slimy nonsense!” Abrams told the Free Beacon Monday that his critics are intentionally distorting his position for partisan gain.
“It’s been a disappointment that people have not read what I’ve written, so they don’t know what I’ve actually said about Hagel,” Abrams said.
“What’s interesting is that tactic of attacking critics of Hagel rather than defending Hagel,” Abrams said when informed about the email chain obtained by the Free Beacon. “My views were made clear now in two articles and I’ll stand by them.”Read the full story here.