Here & Now's Robin Young speaks with Richard Pacelle, professor of political science at the University of Tennessee, to find some answers.
During the confirmation hearings for Chuck Hagel’s nomination as Secretary of Defense, Hagel ran into opposition from some Republicans over allegations that he had received funding from foreign sources.
Among the allegations swirling was a rumor that Hagel had received money for speaking to a group called “Friends of Hamas.”
Senator Rand Paul said that he found the allegations “very concerning.”
Former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee said that “rumors of Chuck Hagel’s having received funds from Friends of Hamas,” would, if true, “disqualify him.”
And on Lou Dobbs’ Fox Business show, a columnist from National Review brought up the group “Friends of Hamas” as an example of what Hagel might be hiding.
But it turns out the allegations of Hagel receiving foreign funding are not true.
The group “Friends of Hamas” does not exist, and Chuck Hagel has never had anything to do with any such group.
So how does a rumor like that start?
Writer Dan Friedman of the New York Daily News says that in this case, he knows exactly how it started – he was the unwitting source.