There's no less likely a hero to liberals than Nebraska's Republican Senator, who toes the party line 90% of the time. But Chuck Hagel, 60, a highly decorated Vietnam veteran, has become one of the most vocal critics in Congress of the Iraq war. He spoke with TIME's Perry Bacon Jr. about opposing President Bush's plan to send 20,000 more troops to Iraq, about whether Iraq will become another Vietnam and about presidential "wannabes."
You have been one of the most vocal Republicans in opposing the war. Was there one moment that tipped you?