‘Hagel unlikely to back Iran war’

New US nominee for secretary of defense, Chuck Hagel, is unlikely to throw his weight behind any scenario for military strike against Iran, an American politician tells Press TV.

“I think if [Chuck] Hagel gets appointed or confirmed by the Senate for the Defense Department, I think that will be a plus from Iran’s point of view because I do not think he would get involved in any plan to go to war with Iran,” said former US Senator in San Francisco Mike Gravel in an exclusive interview with Press TV.

On January 7, US President Barack Obama nominated Hagel as his next defense secretary despite political uproar over the nomination.

“Hagel would not be a friend of Israel. He would not be an enemy but he would certainly be a lot more circumspect with our relationship with Israel,” Gravel pointed out.

The US politician however noted, “The tragedy is that this new [US national security] team is not going to change Obama’s posture to speak with respect to American imperialism, but it could mean a plus with respect to Iran in a couple of instances.”

Hagel left the Senate in 2008. He sometimes spoke against Israel, voted against sanctions on Iran, and even made blunt comments about the influence of the “Jewish lobby” in Washington.

The 66-year-old was the first Republican senator to publicly criticize the war in Iraq, calling it the worst foreign policy blunder since the Vietnam War, and has consistently opposed any plan to launch a military strike against Iran.