My column on Kerry’s nomination and the possible Hagel nomination went up late last year. Here is an excerpt:

As an admirer of President Eisenhower, Hagel could prove to be an important proponent of reduced military spending at the Pentagon. As a critic of the “surge” in Iraq and President Obama’s decision to send additional forces to Afghanistan, Hagel would be unlikely to support prolonging a large U.S. military presence in Afghanistan. Instead of having a defense secretary warning against “devastating” cuts to the military budget, as he does now, Obama would have someone willing to find where reductions in spending could be made. The country would be well-served by Hagel’s nomination to the post.