Charles Krauthammer writes that the Hagel nomination means that
However the Senate votes on confirmation, the signal has already been sent. Before Election Day, Obama could only whisper it to his friend Dmitry. Now, with Hagel, he’s told the world.
By that Krauthammer means that Hagel represents Obama's desire to weaken America internationally.
Read more here: http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/charles-krauthammer-the-meaning-of-hagel/2013/01/10/12a37c48-5b5f-11e2-9fa9-5fbdc9530eb9_story.html