Republican Sen. Jim Inhofe (OK) asked Chuck Hagel on Thursday why Iran supported his nomination as defense secretary.
“Given that Iran, the people — I’m quoting right now from Iran — people of the Middle East, the Muslim region and North Africa, people of these regions hate America from the bottom of their heart,” Inhofe said. “It further said Israel is a cancerous tumor in the heart of the Islamic world. They further said Iran’s warriors are ready and willing to wipe Israel off the map. The question I’d like to ask you, and you can answer for the record if you’d like, why do you think the Iranian foreign ministry so strongly supports your nomination to be the Secretary of Defense?”
Hagel dismissed the question.
“I have a difficult enough time with American politics, Senator,” he replied. “I have no idea, but thank you. And I’ll be glad to respond further for the record.”
Iran’s Foreign Ministry said earlier this month that the country hoped Hagel would bring “practical changes in American foreign policy.” The former Republican Senator from Nebraska has spoken out against sanctions on Iran and other countries, claiming they are a poor tool to use in foreign policy.
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[Image via Gage Skidmore, Creative Commons licensed]