Hagel: Iraq War Has Helped ‘Bankrupt This Country,’ Made Middle East More Unstable

Today on ABC’s This Week, Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-NE) rejected the administration’s upbeat rhetoric on the Iraq war, claiming that its “mindless banter” hides the real picture of what’s going on in the region. Watch it:


STEPHANOPOULOS: So we have to start thinking about a staged withdrawal?

HAGEL: Well, we always should be thinking about that. But somehow we are going to have to bring into the mix here the obligations, responsibility, not just of the Iraqi people but of the region.

And this mindless kind of banter about, well, if we leave, the whole place falls apart; we can’t leave; we can’t even think about leaving. Wait a minute: You just showed on your screen the cost to the American people of the last three years.

It’s helping bankrupt this country, by the way. We didn’t think about any of that and not just the high cost of lives and the continuation of that but our standing in the world.

And I would define it this way. Are we better off today than we were three years ago? Is the Middle East more stable than it was three years ago? Absolutely not. It’s more unstable.

Crooks & Liars highlights Hagel’s comments about the ongoing civil war in Iraq.