Chuck Hagel is presently opposed to releasing all of the details of the foreign funding he received for the corporate and nonprofit organizations in which he has served since his Senate term expired. According to Hagel, “[T]he information you seek is legally controlled by the individual entities and not mine to disclose. As a board-member, I have a fiduciary duty that includes the obligation to maintain the confidentiality of non-public corporate information. The information may also be subject to various other legal requirements or contractual arrangements that prohibit its disclosure.” This opposition to disclosing his funding sources has strengthened the resolve of people opposed to Hagel’s nomination, for it makes it appear that Hagel is hiding something.
As one GOP Senate Aid reported, “Senators are not reacting well to this response. Hagel is refusing to answer any of the questions or make any effort to get them the answers. He is basically telling Senators they have no right to know if he has been unduly influenced by foreign governments or foreign agents over the last five years. What is he hiding? I’m told several Senators, including McCain, who have previously expressed opposition to a filibuster said privately […] that failure to disclose foreign funding information would change their thinking.” Evidently, according to this GOP Senate Aid, committee members are concerned about a series of Hagel’s foreign funding sources, which includes the Hariri family.
Indeed, the Hariri family has supported the Atlantic Council by providing the funding for the Atlantic Council Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East. Yet, Saad Hariri, despite his connection to Syrian opposition groups, is no friend of the State of Israel. He sent a representative to Hamas’ 25th anniversary celebrations in Beirut and even while living in exile in Saudi Arabia, reached out to Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh in Gaza, claiming that he supports all efforts for Palestinian reconciliation and stressed the need to put aside all differences in order for Palestinians and Arabs to unite to “confront Israeli plots, aggressions and ambitions in the Arab region.”
Yet unfortunately, the Hariri family is far from Hagel’s only questionable funding source. While Hagel refuses to disclose this particular funding source, senate sources have told Breitbart News that Hagel may have received money from Friends of Hamas, which if true would mean that a designated terrorist organization supports Hagel’s nomination as US Secretary of Defense. The fact that Hamas would support Chuck Hagel should not be surprising, since he supports dialogue with Hamas and holds anti-Israel views. Indeed, the Council on American-Islamic Relations, which has been named an unindicted co-conspirator to funding Hamas terrorism, who has been barred from cooperating with the FBI because of its ties to terrorism, and whom the counter-terrorism expert Steve Emerson has described as “a radical fundamentalist front group for Hamas,” has praised Chuck Hagel.
But as if this were not bad enough, Clare Lopez, a senior fellow at the Center for Security Policy, has informed World Net Daily that Hagel “is associated with people who are associated with the National Iranian American Council,” which is “the center of the Iranian lobby in America.” World Net Daily has reported that Hagel sits on the board of Ploughshares Fund, which according to Sarah Stern, the founder and president of the Endowment for Middle East Truth, has “given more than $2 million in grants to organizations that support lifting sanctions on Iran and weakening the Israeli-American alliance.” One of those organizations is the National Iranian American Council, which since 2007 has received over $600,000 in grants. These sources are merely a sample of Hagel’s problematic associations, which again illustrate that Hagel is not fit to be US Secretary of Defense.
By Rachel Avraham