Chuck Hagel May Have Inadvertently Ordered the Bergdahl Trade

Gibberish to blame?
Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel (AP)

President Obama’s decision to announce the Bowe Bergdahl prisoner swap in a triumphant Rose Garden appearance suggests the White House had no inkling of the broad public skepticism that would follow.

On Monday, USA Today published a poll showing that more Americans oppose the Bergdahl trade than support it. That same day, administration official told members of Congress it was Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, and not Obama, who made the final call.

That’s odd, given that Hagel himself said over the weekend that Obama “made the ultimate decision,” and Hagel merely “signed off” on it.

Military Transgender Policy Could Be Reviewed

Concerns grow that taxpayer money could be used for sexual reassignment surgery
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel / AP

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel’s recent comments about his willingness to review the military’s transgender policy are raising concerns that the armed forces could soon be using taxpayer money to pay for procedures such as sexual reassignment surgery, just as the forces continue to grapple with billions in budget cuts.

Report: Pentagon Paid $150 Per Gallon for Green Jet Fuel

GAO report notes exorbitant prices act as de facto subsidy for biofuel firms
AP

The Department of Defense paid $150 per gallon for alternative jet fuel made from algae, more than 64 times the current market price for standard carbon-based fuels, according to a report released on Wednesday.

Report: Pentagon Mishandling Hazardous Material Shipments

‘Potential for public safety and national security consequences’
Firefighters with the Commonwealth of Virginia Regional HazMat Team wearing Level A Haz Mat suits

The Department of Defense has been mishandling shipments of sensitive and highly dangerous hazardous materials, a security flaw that has created the “potential for public safety and national security consequences,” according to a new report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO).

Chuck Hagel Is That Guy

AP

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel is that guy. He’s the guy who is always calling to ask where the party is, but it’s only 2:30 p.m. on a Saturday and you just want to chill for a few hours before going out. Plus, Hagel is excruciatingly dull to hang out with, as evidenced by his underwater approval rating.

His two best friends—John and Barry—are insufferable bores who talk too much. Most of the time, you end up telling him what he wants to hear just to get him off your back, and then, later, ignore his frenzied phone calls when you inevitably don’t show up at the place where you agreed to meet him.

Report: Intel Agencies Failing to Track Security Contractors

Misconduct among those with top-secret clearance not investigated
AP

The nation’s top national security agencies are failing to properly report instances of misconduct by independent contractors, many of whom hold top-secret security clearances, according to a new report by the Defense Department’s Inspector General.

Administration Urged to Lift Restrictions on Non-Lethal Military Aid to Ukraine

Body armor, night vision gear, radios, and fuel urgently sought by Ukrainian military
Ukrainian helicopters grounded to save fuel

The Obama administration is withholding urgently needed non-lethal military equipment to Ukraine under restrictions that view body armor, night vision goggles, radios, and fuel as destabilizing “force multipliers,” according to a bipartisan assessment of Ukraine’s military needs.