Bacevich on Challenges of Chuck Hagel

bacevich25e-1-webAndrew Bacevich, professor emeritus of International Relations and History at the Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University, described the challenges faced by Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel in an OpEd published in Monday’s New York Daily News (November 24, 2014). Hagel recently announced his retirement.

An excerpt from Prof. Bacevich’s OpEd:

Count on Obama’s choice of a defense secretary to replace Hagel to spark tons of media chitchat. Will Michele Flournoy become the first woman to run the Pentagon? How about Jack Reed, a well-respected senator who is also a West Pointer and former soldier? (He claims not to be interested in the job.) Or perhaps Ashton Carter, who displays the sort of Ivy League and Oxbridge credentials that carry such weight with the foreign policy establishment?

Yet substantively, the choice won’t matter much. In part, this is because the clock is running out on the Obama presidency. Yet of greater importance is this: In Washington, there exists neither the will nor the creative energy to change. So in our War for the Greater Middle East we will slog on, throwing good money after bad, singing the praises of the troops sent to perform a futile mission. That’s the mournful and dispiriting task that Hagel’s successor will be expected to perform.

You can read the entire OpEd here.