We Applaud the Nomination of Senator Hagel for Secretary of Defense

Ploughshares Fund congratulates Senator Chuck Hagel on his nomination by President Barack Obama for secretary of defense. His strong record of leadership on national security will make him a valuable asset for the Department of Defense during this period of strategic challenge and transition.

“We have been grateful for Sen. Hagel's work on the Ploughshares Fund Board of Directors since he joined us in 2009,” said Ploughshares Fund Board Chairman Roger Hale. “We value his leadership on smart, bipartisan solutions to reduce the threat of nuclear weapons, and applaud the President’s choice. Sen. Hagel’s commitment to reducing nuclear dangers – both in the Senate and in the years since – sets him apart as one of America’s most insightful and effective voices on nuclear security. We wish him a speedy confirmation.”

Sen. Hagel has been a leading voice for bipartisan, pragmatic efforts to modernize U.S. nuclear security policy. In the Senate, Sen. Hagel co-authored, with then-Senator Obama, comprehensive nuclear security legislation to prevent the spread and use of nuclear weapons, S. 1977. As chairman of the Atlantic Council, Sen. Hagel co-chaired a task force on Iran with Amb. Stuart Eizenstat to develop effective approaches to the Iranian crisis and signed and endorsed with 34 other security leaders including Brent Scowcroft, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Adm. William Fallon, Gen. Anthony Zinni and Anne-Marie Slaughter, the 2012 report, Weighing the Benefits and Costs of Military Action against Iran. Sen. Hagel joined with Gen. James Cartwright, Amb. Richard Burt, Amb. Thomas Pickering, Gen. Jack Sheehan and Dr. Bruce Blair in practical recommendations for the 2012 study, Modernizing U.S. Nuclear Strategy, Force Structure and Posture.

“Sen. Hagel epitomizes the growing bipartisan consensus for a new nuclear security strategy – one that will meet the challenges of the 21st century and make Americans safer and more secure,” said Hale. “He is an excellent choice to lead the Department of Defense.”