Tag Archives: Neoconservatives

What Did Washington Achieve in its Six Year War on Syria? by Ron Paul

The correct answer to Ron Paul’s question is: less than nothing. From Paul at the ronpaulinstitute.com:

Now that the defeat of ISIS in Syria appears imminent, with the Syrian army clearing out some of the last ISIS strongholds in the east, Washington’s interventionists are searching for new excuses to maintain the illegal US military presence in the country. Their original rationale for intervention has long been exposed as another lie.

Remember that President Obama initially involved the US military in Iraq and Syria to “prevent genocide” of the Yazidis and promised the operation would not drift into US “boots on the ground.” That was three years ago and the US military became steadily more involved while Congress continued to dodge its Constitutional obligations. The US even built military bases in Syria despite having no permission to do so! Imagine if Syria started building military bases here in the US against our wishes.

After six years of war the Syrian government has nearly defeated ISIS and al-Qaeda and the US-backed “moderates” turned out to be either Islamist extremists or Kurdish soldiers for hire. According to a recent report, the US has shipped two billion dollars worth of weapons to fighters in Syria via eastern Europe. Much of these weapons ended up in the hands of ISIS directly, or indirectly through “moderates” taking their weapons with them while joining ISIS or al-Qaeda.

“Assad must go,” proclaimed President Obama back in 2011, as he claimed that the Syrian leader was committing genocide against his own people and that regime change was the only way to save Syrians. Then earlier this year, when eastern Aleppo was about to be liberated by the Syrian government, the neocons warned that Assad would move in and kill all the inhabitants. They warned that the population of eastern Aleppo would flee from the Syrian army. But something very different happened. According to the UN’s International Organization for Migration, 600,000 refugees returned to Syria by August. Half of the returnees went back to Aleppo, where we were told Assad was waiting to kill them.

What happened? The neocons and “humanitarian interventionists” lied. Just as they lied about Libya, Iraq, and so on.

While it was mostly ignored by the mainstream media, just this week a Christian was elected speaker of the Syrian parliament. The new speaker is a 58-year-old Orthodox Christian law graduate and member of President Assad’s Baath party.

To continue reading: What Did Washington Achieve in its Six Year War on Syria?

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The Neoconservatives Have Declared War on the Realists, by Ryan McMaken

A better title for this article would have been: “The Unrealists Have Declared War on the Realists.” From Ryan McMaken at mises.org:

In recent years, I’ve increasingly suspected that when it comes to foreign policy, the realists offer some of the most sane observations.

These suspicions were confirmed earlier this year when after the election of Donald Trump, John Mearsheimer, one of modern realism’s current standard bearers, wrote in The National Interest that Trump should “adopt a realist foreign policy” and outlines a far better foreign policy agenda that what we’ve seen coming from Washington.

And what is this realist foreign policy? For Mearsheimer, some main tenets include:

  • Accepting that the US attempt at nation building in Afghanistan, Egypt, Iraq, Libya, Syria and Yemen “has been an abject failure.”
  • “Washington [should] respect the sovereignty of other states even when it disagrees with their internal policies.”
  • “Spreading democracy, especially by force, almost always fails.”
  • Understanding that “America’s terrorism problem … is fueled in part by the U.S. military presence on Arab territory as well as the endless wars the United States has waged in the greater Middle East.”
  • “The Trump administration should let local powers deal with ISIS.”
  • Recognizing that Russia poses no real threat to the United States: “Even if Russia modernizes its economy and its population grows in the years ahead — big ifs — it will still be unable to project significant military power beyond eastern Europe.”
  • “A Syria run by Assad poses no threat to the United States”
  • “The new president should also work to improve relations with Iran.”
  • “Encourage the Europeans to take responsibility for their own security, while gradually reducing the remaining U.S. troops there.”

To continue reading: The Neoconservatives Have Declared War on the Realistshttps://mises.org/blog/neoconservatives-have-declared-war-realists

Hey Bill Kristol, Consider Rebranding as “Alt-Left!” by Jack Kerwick

This article is good as far as it goes, but when you get down to it, conservative, neoconservative, liberal, and neoliberal are just variants of one philosophy: statism. From Jack Kerwick at lewrockwell.com:

NeverTrumper Bill Kristol, a staunch Republican neoconservative who self-styled as a conservative for decades, particularly during the Bush II years, now calls for his fellow NeverTrumpers to “rebrand” as “liberals.”

The significance of this can’t be overstated, for Kristol, a figure whose ideology is of a piece with that of the Republican Party of which his was an especially audible voice for much of this young century, has vindicated what some of us have been saying for quite some:

The GOP is not, as it insists, “conservative.”

It is neoconservative.

And between neoconservatism and classical or traditional conservatism, there is a difference not merely in degree, but in kind.

Bill’s own father, Irving, was explicit on this score.  In contrast to traditional conservatives, he wrote, neoconservatives embrace “the welfare state.”  They enthusiastically endorse “social security, unemployment insurance, some form of national health insurance [i.e. “universal healthcare” or “socialized medicine”], some kind of family assistance plan, etc.”

Nor, Irving Kristol continued, will neoconservatives hesitate “to interfere with the market for overriding social purposes.”

Neocons do not want to “destroy the welfare-state [.]”  Quite the contrary, they seek to “reconstruct” the welfare-state “along more economical and humane lines.”

Neoconservative Nathan Glazer goes so far as to suggest that neocons are essentially socialists.  “It’s very hard for us,” for neocons and socialists, “to define what it is that divides us, in any centrally principled way.”  While they may disagree over policies, there doesn’t appear to be any “principles that separate us [.]”

To continue reading: Hey Bill Kristol, Consider Rebranding as “Alt-Left!”

 

Neocons Leverage Trump-Hate for More Wars, by Robert Parry

If you’ve been looking for a catalogue of recent neoconservative depredations, here it is. From Robert Parry at consortiumnews.com:

Exclusive: The enactment of new sanctions against Russia and Iran – with the support of nearly all Democrats and Republicans in Congress – shows how the warmongering neocons again have come out on top, reports Robert Parry.

A savvy Washington observer once told me that the political reality about the neoconservatives is that they alone couldn’t win you a single precinct in the United States. But both Republicans and Democrats still line up to gain neocon support or at least neocon acceptance.

A scene from “Dr. Strangelove,” in which the bomber pilot (played by actor Slim Pickens) rides a nuclear bomb to its target in the Soviet Union.

Part of the reason for this paradox is the degree of dominance that the neoconservatives have established in the national news media – as op-ed writers and TV commentators – and the neocon ties to the Israel Lobby that is famous for showering contributions on favored politicians and on the opponents of those not favored.

Since the neocons’ emergence as big-time foreign policy players in the Reagan administration, they also have demonstrated extraordinary resilience, receiving a steady flow of money often through U.S. government-funded grants from organizations such as the National Endowment for Democracy and through donations from military contractors to hawkish neocon think tanks.

But neocons’ most astonishing success over the past year may have been how they have pulled liberals and even some progressives into the neocon strategies for war and more war, largely by exploiting the Left’s disgust with President Trump.

People who would normally favor international cooperation toward peaceful resolution of conflicts have joined the neocons in ratcheting up global tensions and making progress toward peace far more difficult.

The provocative “Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act,” which imposes sanctions on Russia, Iran and North Korea while tying President Trump’s hands in removing those penalties, passed the Congress without a single Democrat voting no.

The only dissenting votes came from three Republican House members – Justin Amash of Michigan, Jimmy Duncan of Tennessee, and Thomas Massie of Kentucky – and from Republican Rand Paul of Kentucky and Independent Bernie Sanders of Vermont in the Senate.

To continue reading: Neocons Leverage Trump-Hate for More Wars

 

With New D.C. Policy Group, Dems Continue to Rehabilitate and Unify With Bush-Era Neocons, by Glenn Greenwald

The Democrats dominant foreign policy strain is neoconservativism. From Glenn Greenwald at theintercept.com:

ONE OF THE most under-discussed yet consequential changes in the American political landscape is the reunion between the Democratic Party and the country’s most extreme and discredited neocons. While the rise of Donald Trump, whom neocons loathe, has accelerated this realignment, it began long before the ascension of Trump and is driven by far more common beliefs than contempt for the current president.

A newly formed and, by all appearances, well-funded national security advocacy group, devoted to more hawkish U.S. policies toward Russia and other adversaries, provides the most vivid evidence yet of this alliance. Calling itself the Alliance for Securing Democracy, the group describes itself as “a bipartisan, transatlantic initiative” that “will develop comprehensive strategies to defend against, deter, and raise the costs on Russian and other state actors’ efforts to undermine democracy and democratic institutions,” and also “will work to publicly document and expose Vladimir Putin’s ongoing efforts to subvert democracy in the United States and Europe.”

It is, in fact, the ultimate union of mainstream Democratic foreign policy officials and the world’s most militant, and militaristic, neocons. The group is led by two longtime Washington foreign policy hands, one from the establishment Democratic wing and the other a key figure among leading GOP neocons.

The Democrat, Laura Rosenberger, served as a foreign policy adviser for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and chief of staff to two Obama national security officials. The Republican is Jamie Fly, who spent the last four years as counselor for foreign and national security affairs to one of the Senate’s most hawkish members, Marco Rubio; prior to that, he served in various capacities in the Bush Pentagon and National Security Council.

To continue reading: With New D.C. Policy Group, Dems Continue to Rehabilitate and Unify With Bush-Era Neocons

What Is America’s Goal in the World? by Patrick J. Buchanan

Like an aimless teenager, America finds new ways to get into trouble. From Patrick J. Buchanan at buchanan.org:

For the World War II generation there was clarity.

The attack on Pearl Harbor, Dec 7, 1941, united the nation as it had never been before — in the conviction that Japan must be smashed, no matter how long it took or how many lives it cost.

After the defeat of the Axis powers in 1945, however, Americans divided.

Only with the Berlin Blockade of 1948, the fall of China to Mao and Russia’s explosion of an atom bomb in 1949, and North Korea’s invasion of the South in 1950, did we unite around the proposition that, for our own security, we had to go back to Europe and Asia.

What was called the Cold War consensus — that only America could “contain” Stalin’s empire — led to NATO and new U.S. alliances from the Elbe to the East China Sea.

Vietnam, however, shattered that Cold War consensus.

The far left of the Democratic Party that had taken us into Vietnam had repudiated the war by 1968, and switched sides to sympathize with such Third World communists as Fidel Castro, Che Guevara, Ho Chi Minh and the Sandinistas.

Center-right presidents — JFK, Nixon, Reagan — accepted the need to cooperate with dictators who would side with us in fighting Communism.

And we did. Park Chung-Hee in Korea. The Shah in Iran. President Diem in Saigon. Gen. Franco in Spain. Somoza in Nicaragua. Gen. Mobuto in the Congo. Gen. Pinochet in Chile. Ferdinand Marcos in Manila. The list goes on.

Under Reagan, the Soviet Empire finally fell apart and the USSR then disintegrated in one of the epochal events of history.

The American Century had ended in America’s triumph.

Yet, after 1989, no new national consensus emerged over what ought to be our role in the World. What should we stand for? What should we fight for?

What Dean Acheson had said of our cousins in 1962: “Great Britain has lost an empire and has not yet found a role,” was true of us.

What was our role in the world, now that the Cold War was history?

To continue reading: What Is America’s Goal in the World?

 

Where the Anti-Russian Moral Panic is Leading Us, by Justin Raimondo

Are you now or have you ever been an advocate of better relations with Russia? This time it will be Democrats and neoconservative Republicans leading the McCarthyite witch hunts. From Justin Raimondo at antiwar.com:

They said the election of Donald Trump would usher in an era of political repression in which the First Amendment would come under attack – and they were right, although not in the way they meant it:

“Federal investigators are examining whether far-right news sites played any role last year in a Russian cyber operation that dramatically widened the reach of news stories – some fictional – that favored Donald Trump’s presidential bid, two people familiar with the inquiry say.

“Operatives for Russia appear to have strategically timed the computer commands, known as ‘bots,’ to blitz social media with links to the pro-Trump stories at times when the billionaire businessman was on the defensive in his race against Democrat Hillary Clinton, these sources said.”

Aside from sites run by the Russian government, like Russia Today and Sputnik, the targets of the investigation are Breitbart.com, the pro-Trump web site formerly managed by Steve Bannon – now an advisor to the President – and Infowars.com, the “conspiracy” site made famous by entertainer Alex Jones, although the purview of the witch hunt “investigation” is bound to broaden.

Those “bots” – automated programs that broadcast links, tweets, Facebook posts, etc. – were supposedly launched at key times during the presidential campaign, and were disproportionately anti-Clinton — are supposedly the key link in a Vast Russian Conspiracy. The FBI leakers tell McClatchy News that “investigators examining the bot attacks are exploring whether the far-right news operations took any actions to assist Russia’s operatives. Their participation, however, wasn’t necessary for the bots to amplify their news through Twitter and Facebook.”

So this is how the smear campaign scores points: you don’t have to be on the Russian payroll – you can be a “useful idiot” just because of your political views, which condemn you as an “unwitting” agent, as former CIA director Mike Morell described Trump. This is how the parameters of “respectable” opinion are policed: this is how the War Party criminalizes those who think that the cold war is over and shouldn’t be revived.

To continue reading: Where the Anti-Russian Moral Panic is Leading Us