Serving Two Flags: Neo-Cons, Israel and the Bush Administration

Stephen Green writes, "Some skeptics, noting the neo-cons' past academic and professional associations, writings and public utterances, have suggested that their underlying agenda is the alignment of U.S. foreign and security policies with those of Sharon and the Israeli right wing. The administration's new hard line on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict certainly suggests that, as perhaps does the destruction, with U.S. soldiers and funds, of the military capacity of Iraq, and the current belligerent neo-con campaign against the other two countries which constitute a remaining counterforce to Israeli military hegemony in the region--Iran and Syria. Have the neo-conservatives--many of whom are senior officials in the Defense Department, NSC and Office of the Vice President--had dual agendas, while professing to work for the internal security of the US against its terrorist enemies?" Read the backgrounds of Dr. Stephen Bryen, Michael Ledeen, Richard Perle, Paul Wolfowitz, and Doug Feith.

A Few Honest Neocons Turn Against Conquest of Iraq

Steve Weissman notes a small number of honest neocons who have turned against the Iraq conquest. "The biggest slam has come from one of the neo-cons' leading intellectuals, Francis Fukuyama, author of 'The End of History.' Confronting columnist Charles Krauthammer, who recently proposed that the United States pursue an interventionist policy of forcefully promoting global democracy, Fukuyama flat-out rejected the major neo-conservative arguments for going to war in Iraq. Saddam Hussein never posed an immediate threat to the United States, he declared. And the United States lacked the 'nation-building' know-how to make Iraq democratic. 'If the United States cannot eliminate poverty or raise test scores in Washington, D.C.,' he chided his neo-con colleagues, 'how does it expect to bring democracy to a part of the world that has stubbornly resisted it and is virulently anti-American to boot?'"

Were Laurie Mylroie's Conspiracy Theories Responsible for Bush's Invasion of Iraq?

Peter Bergen writes, "Americans supported the war in Iraq not because Saddam Hussein was an evil dictator - they knew that - but because President Bush made the case that Saddam might hand weapons of mass destruction to his terrorist allies to wreak havoc on the United States. In the absence of any evidence for that theory, it's fair to ask: where did the administration's conviction come from? It was at the American Enterprise Institute - a conservative Washington DC thinktank - that the idea took shape that overthrowing Saddam should be a goal. Among those associated with AEI is Richard Perle, a key architect of the president's get-tough-on-Iraq policy, and Paul Wolfowitz, now the number-two official at the Pentagon. But none of the thinkers at AEI was in any real way an expert on Iraq. For that they relied on someone you probably have never heard of: a woman named Laurie Mylroie."

How the Neocons Drove Bush - and America - Off the Cliff

Tom Engelhardt writes of the neocons: "The Bush people audacious; they were visionary (and didn't mind telling you so); the only liberty they truly valued was their liberty to do as they damn pleased; they were focused on unilateral global domination of a sort seen at most only a few times in history; they had the mentality of plunderers and didn't hesitate to use fear to herd Americans in the directions they most desired. In the end, they may find themselves alone and vulnerable in a Baghdad-on-the-Potomac of their own making with no Green Zone in sight and chaos in the driver's seat."

Failed Neocons Try to Disavow All Knowledge of their Actions

LA Times reports, "'Neocons' - best known for advocating aggressive foreign and military policies - are in the painful zone between distinction and disfavor in Washington. They are losing battles on Capitol Hill. Their principles have stopped appearing in new U.S. policies. And where neoconservatives were once seen as having a future in Republican administrations, the setbacks in Iraq could make it difficult for the group's leading members to win Senate confirmation for top posts in the future... Other neocons worry that the real trouble for them could begin if Bush is [re-defeated] and, among conservatives, the finger-pointing begins - in their direction. 'Bush could end up looking like the worst president since Jimmy Carter because of Iraq, and people are going to say, 'You got us into this mess,' ' said one Washington source who considered himself a neoconservative and spoke on the condition of anonymity. 'It's going to be nasty and bitter and brutal.'" You got THAT right!

Pat Buchanan on 'The Dog Days of the War Party'

"After the 3rd Infantry Division and Marines swept into Baghdad, Washington was at the feet of the neoconservatives who had been plotting an invasion for years. A celebratory breakfast was held at the American Enterprise Institute... where William Kristol, Richard Perle and Michael Ledeen held forth in a spirit of joyous anticipation of wars and victories to come. At a dinner party at the vice president's mansion, Kenneth Adelman, Lewis I. 'Scooter' Libby, Cheney's chief of staff, and Paul Wolfowitz toasted one another and the president. As the '60s song went, "Those were the days, my friend, we thought they'd never end.' Now, enmeshed in a guerrilla war, Americans are demanding to know who told us we would be welcomed with garlands of flowers... said our troops would come home in a year? ...who said democracy would flourish across the Arab world? Who misled us about the weapons of mass destruction? Who lied us into war?"

NeoCons and White House Disintegrate into Warring Factions, with Chalabi at Center of Latest Battle

For the White House and its Kling-ons, it is becoming, as we predicted it might, a case of "every rat for itself" as the vermin scramble for position on the sinking SS. Bush. Fearing what Chalabi might reveal about the administration if he became too independent and empowered, Bush, Cheney and others did a preemptive strike, raiding Chalabi's files and accusing him of enough deceit to discredit in advance any accusations he may make. Now other Neocons, led by Richard Perle, having hoped to profit from Chalabi's connections, have stormed the White House, demanding an end to the "smear campaign" against their golden boy in Iraq. So grab the popcorn and a cold one, kick back, and watch the games begin!

FBI Investigates Neocons as Spies for Chalabi

Sid Blumenthal writes, "FBI agents have begun paying quiet calls on prominent neoconservatives, who are being interviewed in an investigation of potential espionage, according to intelligence sources. Who gave Ahmed Chalabi classified information about the plans of the U.S. government and military? The Iraqi neocon favorite, tipped to lead his liberated country post-invasion, has been identified by the CIA and Defense Intelligence Agency as an Iranian double agent, passing secrets to that citadel of the 'axis of evil' for decades. All the while the neocons cosseted, promoted and arranged for more than $30 million in Pentagon payments to the George Washington manqué of Iraq. In return, he fed them a steady diet of disinformation... Either Chalabi perpetrated the greatest con since the Trojan horse or he was the agent of influence for the most successful intelligence operation conducted by Iran, or both."

Bush Must Stop the PNAC Coup d'Etat

Joseph Wilson writes, "Bush could fundamentally change the direction of his administration by firing fewer than fifteen senior officials, beginning with those signatories of the Project for the New American Century who signed a 1998 letter that urged President Clinton to wage war on Iraq. They are clustered at the National Security Council (NSC), in the Defense and State Departments, and within Vice President Cheney's own parallel national security office. That particular little-known organization -- not accountable to Congress and virtually unknown to the American people -- should be completely dismantled. Never in the history of our democracy has there been established such an influential and pervasive center of power with the ability to circumvent longstanding and accepted reporting structures and to skew decisionmaking practices. It has been described to me chillingly by a former senior government official as a coup d'etat within the State."

Power Struggle over Iraq-Iran Strategies Raging inside White House

Bush's NeoCon puppetmasters - in a charge led by Dick Cheney, and backed up by Rummy, Wolfowitz, Richard Perle key minions at the American Enterprise Institute - are pushing for a future invasion of Iran. To that end, they have lately been pressuring Bush to heat up his rhetoric against that country - currently, they want him to accuse Iran of instigating the Shi'ite uprising. Meanwhile, Bush, acting on someone else's advice - Daddy's perhaps? - has appealed to Iran for HELP to quell the crisis in Iraq (see www.abc.net.au/news/newsitems/s1087407.htm ) Could it possibly be that Bush will actually do the right thing and stand up to his handlers on this issue?

Electile Dysfunction: The Drooping Polls of Neo-Conservatism

Stacey Michael writes, "Shh... Do you hear that... No... nothing? You're right! At the beginning of this election cycle there seems to be a void in hubris. Where is the big-balls talk, which is so common from the far Right? Why don't we hear how crazy, or unpatriotic we all are, questioning the integrity of Bush's agenda? Where on earth is the shrill that has become the staple of Neo-Conservatism? Has all of their sophistry really reached a plateau, a furious pitch that only cockroaches can hear? The big-guns of ideologue appear to be out of ammo, firing blanks at any red-herring they can find. Including, long-dead ones, which seem to be their biggest game these days. Clearly, Neo-Con's are on the defensive, and rightly so, the winds-of-change are swelling to a category-five hurricane, political realities can no longer be ignored. "

Gen. Zinni: America Has Been Neo-Conned

After his near-fatal Vietnam injury, Gen. Anthony Zinni "promised himself that, 'If I'm ever in a position to say what I think is right, I will... I don't care what happens to my career.' That time has arrived. Over the past year, the retired Marine Corps general has become one of the most prominent opponents of Bush administration policy on Iraq, which he now fears is drifting toward disaster... The more he listened to Wolfowitz and other administration officials talk about Iraq, the more Zinni became convinced that interventionist 'neoconservative' ideologues were plunging the nation into a war in a part of the world they didn't understand. 'The more I saw, the more I thought that this was the product of the neocons who didn't understand the region and were going to create havoc there. These were dilettantes from Washington think tanks who never had an idea that worked on the ground.'"

Realists v. Hawks: Baker Returns

Jim Lobe writes: "Indeed, some analysts believe that [James] Baker's return was promoted by Rove as part of a discreet 'dump-Cheney' campaign. Philip Giraldi, a former CIA officer and political columnist for The American Conservative, wrote this week that Baker and Scowcroft are 'orchestrating' a Rove-backed campaign to blame Cheney and the neoconservatives around him and in the Pentagon for botching Iraq and, with it, Bush's reelection chances. But the larger foreign policy impact of the realist resurgence of the realists--capped by Baker's return--are already tangible." This is much more than a battle between the NeoCon "hawks" and the "realists." The larger power struggle is between the New Right network (of Richard Mellon Scaife and Paul Weyrich) and the Eastern Establishment (of Bush Sr. and Baker). The New Right is headed by the Heritage Foundation -- with the NeoCons comprising just one of its factions. The Eastern Establishment is emblemized these days by the Carlyle Group.

The Intellectual Decline of AEI

Benjamin Wallace-Wells writes: "First, AEI started courting conservative scholars outside its traditional spheres of economics and political science, particularly in the fields of social and foreign policy. These included Irving Kristol, Jeanne Kirkpatrick, and other neoconservatives who felt out of place, even discriminated against, in liberal academia... Irving Kristol's protege Jude Wanniski... used an AEI fellowship to write his 1978 book The Way the World Works, which promoted the dubious Laffer Curve... And Charles Murray, then as now an AEI fellow, wrote 1995's The Bell Curve, which argued that intelligence test score differences among the races were in part genetically determined. High-profile scholars like these also attracted large grants from conservative foundations such as Scaife and Bradley. Second, AEI made a strategic decision to become a major advocate of economic deregulation, hiring teams of economists."

It's Spelled AEI, but Pronounced Aiiiieeee!!!

Joe Conason writes: "Laurie Mylroie, the pet conspiracy theorist of the neoconservatives, long ago earned the painful debunking inflicted in the new Washington Monthly by Peter Bergen, a serious journalist and scholar widely recognized for his pioneering investigations of al-Qaida. The inventive Mylroie blames Saddam Hussein for nearly every terrible event of the past decade or so -- from the crash of TWA Flight 800 to the Oklahoma City bombing to the 9/11 attacks. As an American counterterrorism official quipped, she 'probably thinks the Washington sniper was an Iraqi.' Her flights of fantasy would hardly matter, however, except that she is the neocons' only certified Iraq expert, and thus wields influence in the White House, the Pentagon and the State Department."

A Rogues' Gallery of Neo Con Artists

"TvNewsLies has compiled a number of important resources, including the web site of the Project for a New American Century, so you may learn more about the real goals of the powerful cabal that has the power to control our lives and the destiny of the world."

Critics Say Bolton's Sabre-Rattling is Unjustified

LA Times: "The Bush administration's point man on nonproliferation has exaggerated the threat posed by Syria, Libya, and Cuba in an effort to build the case that strong action is needed to prevent them from developing WMDs, former intelligence officials and independent specialists say. Undersecretary of State John Bolton has long been one of the most controversial figures in the Bush administration -- a pugnacious neoconservative with a reputation for blunt talk and tough action. The allegations that he is inflating the evidence against regimes that are at odds with Washington have been made as the administration is defending itself against criticism that it misused intelligence to make the case for invading Iraq. 'Very often, the points he makes have some truth to them, but he simply goes beyond where the facts tell intelligent people they should go,' said Carl W. Ford Jr., who retired in October as head of the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research."

The Crisis of Feith

Jim Lobe writes: "In light of falling poll numbers, pressure is building for a top-level scapegoat to be sacrificed at the Pentagon as a sign that someone is being held accountable for what have become widely acknowledged failures in the Bush administration's occupation of Iraq. The leading candidate is Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Douglas Feith, and 'What's gonna happen with Feith?' is the question animating the Washington cogniscenti as the debate heats up over whether a major shift in the Bush administration's unilateralist and ultra-hawkish foreign policy is or is not underway. Feith, who occupies an obscure but nonetheless strategic position, reports directly to the deputy secretary, Paul Wolfowitz, and Pentagon chief Donald Rumsfeld."

NeoCons are Today's 'Bloody-Minded Professors'

"The attack left Prof. Wolfowitz visibly shaken. Here was the fire-eating warlord, the tough neo-con theoretician who had sent American GI's into combat in Afghanistan and Iraq, trembling in his brand-new chukka boots after the tiniest taste of real war. Neither Bush, Cheney, nor Wolfowitz ever served in their nation's armed forces - unless you count Bush's sporadic appearances at the Texas Air National Guard. Wolfowitz, and fellow neo-conservative administration hawks who variously call for attacks on Iran, Libya, Lebanon, Syria and Sudan, vividly bring to mind the words of American political thinker and poet, Peter Viereck. In his brilliant book, 'Metapolitics: The Roots of the Nazi Mind', Viereck detailed how so many of the founders of Germany's National Socialist Party were artists, writers and academics. They were 'intellectuals who lusted for brute violence ... a Bohemia in arms,' wrote Viereck, who warned of 'bloody-minded professors' running amok in politics."

Is Israel's Likud Party Running the Pentagon and Launching Wars?

Jim Lobe writes, "Key personnel who worked in both NESA and OSP were part of a broader network of neo-conservative ideologues and activists who worked with other Bush political appointees scattered around the national-security bureaucracy to move the country to war, according to retired Lt Col Karen Kwiatkowski, who was assigned to NESA from May 2002 through February 2003. The heads of NESA and OSP were Deputy Undersecretary William Luti and Abram Shulsky, respectively. Other appointees who worked with them in both offices included Michael Rubin, previously with the neo-conservative AEI; David Schenker, previously with the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP); Michael Makovsky; younger brother of David Makovsky, former executive editor of pro-Likud 'Jerusalem Post'; and Chris Lehman... Along with Feith, all of the political appointees have in common a close identification with the views of the right-wing Likud Party in Israel."

U.S. Policy Towards Iraq: Unraveling the Web of People and Think Tanks

Laurence A. Toenjes writes: "This paper was begun in an attempt to answer the question: How did the war against Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda become the war to depose Saddam Hussein? The effort to understand this change in U.S. policy led to a picture of a relatively small group of persons associated with certain think tanks and other organizations achieving disproportionate influence over the policy formulation process. The activities of fourteen organizations were coordinated by individuals who comprised a web of interlocking memberships. Many of these individuals were on record calling for the overthrow of Saddam Hussein as far back as 1998, in a letter to President Clinton. This was well before the September 11, 2001 attack on the World Trade Center and before George W. Bush became President. The main contribution of this paper is the attempt to quantify the inter-linked nature of the 14 organizations by cross-tabulating individuals with memberships in two or more of them."

Iran-Contra Figure and Neo-Con Michael Ledeen Now Advises Bush on Iran

"Michael A Ledeen, resident scholar... at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), where he works closely with... Richard Perle, is now out front, in a public campaign for the United States to confront Iran, warning that... 'the mullahs are determined to obliterate Israel'... To Ledeen, whose own contacts with the mullahs in the Iran-Contra affair 15 years ago remain the source of some mystery, Iran is 'the mother of modern terrorism'... Ledeen's right-wing Italian connections - including alleged ties to the P-2 Masonic Lodge that rocked Italy in the early 1980s - have long been a source of speculation and intrigue... He was a heavy promoter of the thesis that it was the KGB that was behind the 1981 attempted assassination by Turkish right-winger, Mehmet Ali Agca, of Pope John Paul II, a view he continues to expound today and which also helps explain his contempt for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), whose analysts never accepted the 'Bulgarian Connection', as it was called."

'Rebuilding America's Defenses' and the Project for the New American Century

In an essay, Bette Stockbauer examines "a policy paper (RAD) issued by the Washington think tank PNAC. Published in September 2000, RAD advocates the establishment of a Pax Americana, a global empire with the U.S. in military and commercial control of all nations on earth. This will involve a vast expansion of military power so that the U.S. can fight 'multiple, simultaneous large-scale wars' for the military subjugation of countries opposed to U.S. interests. These ideas are having a far-reaching influence on U.S. policy because many PNAC members, like Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz, Richard Perle, Lewis Libby, and Eliot Abrams, hold important posts in the present administration and have used the events of 9/11 to further their ideas. This article is a summarization of RAD, using extensive quotes from the original document. Those interested in the future course of world history should become familiar with its contents."

Pat Buchanan Declares the Glory Days of the NeoCon Empire Dead

"...the glory days -- of Special Forces galloping on horseback in the Afghan hills, of Abrams tanks dashing like Custer's cavalry across the Iraqi desert, of statues of Saddam toppling into the streets of Baghdad, and presidents landing on carrier flight decks in fighter-pilot garb -- are over, behind us, gone. And ahead? Like all empires, once they cease to expand, they go over onto the defensive. Like the Brits before us, we must now secure, consolidate, protect, manage, and rule what we have in the tedious aftermath of our imperial wars. ..With 25 U.S. soldiers dead and counting since Baghdad fell, what the empire now entails is a steady stream of caskets coming home from Afghanistan and Iraq and tens of billions of American tax dollars going the other way to pay the cost of reconstruction of countries we have defeated and occupied."

They're Not 'Conservatives', They're Feudalists

Thom Hartmann writes: "The real agenda of the new conservatives is nothing less than the destruction of democracy in the United States of America. And feudalism is one of their weapons. Their rallying cry is that government is the enemy... And if they plan to destroy democracy, they must have something in mind to replace it with... Corporations and their CEOs are America's new feudal lords, and the new conservatives are their obliging servants and mouthpieces. The conservative mantra is: 'Less government!' But the dirty little secret of the new conservatives is that just as nature abhors a vacuum, so also do politics and power. Every time government of, by, and for We, the People is pushed out of administering some part of this nation's vast commons, corporations step in. And by swamping the United States of America in debt with so-called 'tax cuts,' they seek to force an increasingly desperate government to cede more and more of our commons to their corporate rule."

How We Got Into This Imperial Pickle: A PNAC Primer

Bernard Weiner writes of the ideologues of The Project for the New American Century, who are in charge of U.S. military policy: "These are men of big ideas, but who don't really think. They certainly don't think through what takes place in the real world, when the genies of war and religious righteousness are let out of the bottle.... No, friends, the PNAC boys are dangerous ideologues playing with matches, and the U.S. is going to get burned even more in years to come, unless their hold on power is broken. The only way to accomplish this, given the present circumstances, is to defeat their boss at the polls in 2004, thus breaking the HardRight momentum that has done, and is doing, such great damage to our reputation abroad and to our country internally, especially to our Constitution and economy."

The NeoCons in Power

Elizabeth Drew writes: "Almost from the outset of the Bush administration there have been battles between the State Department and the Defense Department, but the controversy over postwar Iraq has brought out bitterness and knife-wielding of a sort that Washington has seldom seen. To some extent, the tension between the two departments is inherent because of their different missions. This conflict spills over into the White House and the think tanks and the offices of various consultants around town. It is really a conflict between the neoconservatives, who are largely responsible for getting us into the war against Iraq, and those they disparagingly call the 'realists,' who tend to be more cautious about the United States' efforts to remake the Middle East into a democratic region."

IN BROAD DAYLIGHT: How the Rightwing Corporazis Are Pulling Off the Greatest Ponzi Scam in History

This series by Cheryl Seal's begins with "Renewing American Rightwing Fraud: The Return of Newt Gingrich": "After the IRS ruled that the 501C3 Abraham Lincoln Opportunity Foundation was being illegally used to channel money to the GOP, 'Bo', Callaway appealed, just as he always has done in all his conflict of interest/fraud cases. However, a federal tax court upheld the ruling, as did the 11th District Court. Then, in April, 2003 - the same month Gingrich returned to D.C as a Bush administration advisor, Bush operatives in Congress and the IRS went behind America's back in highly secretive sessions and OVERTURNED THE IRS RULING AGAINST THE ALOF!!! That's right. Not only that, but they ruled that the fund should have ALL penalties repaid to it, plus $70,000 toward 'poor' Mr. Callaway's legal expenses, PLUS all lost tax benefits RESTORED. Unbelievable!! Even people who have been wrongfully held in prison for decades don't get that kind of treatment once released!"

Former CIA Director (and NeoCon) Woolsey Will Profit from War on Terror

The UK Observer reports: "James Woolsey, former CIA boss and influential adviser to... George Bush, is a director of a US firm aiming to make millions of dollars from the 'war on terror', The Observer can reveal... Woolsey, one of the most high-profile hawks in the war against Iraq and a key member of the Pentagon's Defence Policy Board, is a director of the Washington-based private equity firm Paladin Capital. The company was set up three months after the terrorist attacks on New York and sees the events and aftermath of September 11 as a business opportunity which 'offer[s] substantial promise for homeland security investment'... Paladin, which is expected to have raised $300 million from investors by the end of this year, calculates that in the next few years the US government will spend $60 billion on anti-terrorism that would not have been spent before September 11, and that corporations will spend twice that amount to ensure their security and continuity in case of attack."

Leo Strauss - Intellectual Godfather of the Busheviks

Jim Lobe writes, "Suddenly, political Washington is abuzz about Leo Strauss, who arrived in the United States in 1938 and taught at several major universities before his death in 1973... Shadia Drury, author of 1999's 'Leo Strauss and the American Right', says ... '[Leo] Strauss was neither a liberal nor a democrat. Perpetual deception of the citizens by those in power is critical (in Strauss's view) because they need to be led, and they need strong rulers to tell them what's good for them'... Like Plato, Strauss taught that within societies, 'some are fit to lead, and others to be led', according to Drury. But, unlike Plato, who believed that leaders had to be people with such high moral standards that they could resist the temptations of power, Strauss thought that 'those who are fit to rule are those who realise there is no morality and that there is only one natural right, the right of the superior to rule over the inferior'. "

Let's Not Forget -- Bush Planned Iraq 'Regime Change' Before Becoming Resident

Neil Mackay writes: "This 'American grand strategy' must be advanced for 'as far into the future as possible', the report says. It also calls for the US to 'fight and decisively win multiple, simultaneous major theatre wars' as a 'core mission'. The report describes American armed forces abroad as 'the cavalry on the new American frontier'. The PNAC blueprint supports an earlier document written by Wolfowitz and Libby that said the US must 'discourage advanced industrial nations from challenging our leadership or even aspiring to a larger regional or global role.'"

NeoCon Michael Ledeen: 'Peace is Abnormal'

"In 1998, the Project for a New American Century sent an open letter to... Clinton, urging that he overthrow Hussein; 10 of the signatories now work for Bush. And when Bush spoke in February at the [American Enterprise] institute (Lynne Cheney, the vice president's wife, is a board member), he said that his team had borrowed 20 of its scholars. Neocon Richard Perle, a Pentagon adviser, was an institute scholar; so was John Bolton, who now has a key undersecretary post in the State Department... witness ex-Reagan Pentagon adviser [and Iran-Contra player] Michael Ledeen, who...said: 'Americans believe that peace is normal, but that's not true. Life isn't like that. Peace is abnormal'... Gary Schmitt, a former Reagan administration intelligence expert who now runs Kristol's think tank, said: 'Without 9/11, Bush might have been off wandering in the desert, in terms of foreign policy.'" Oh gee, this geek sees a silver lining in 9/11-- just like Bush saying, "Lucky me. I hit the trifecta."

Powell Rebuffs Gingrich Criticism of Trip

AP reports: "Secretary of State Colin Powell Sunday defended his trip to Syria against criticism from former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, saying it was a necessary trip ordered by Resident Bush. Gingrich had called the trip ludicrous. If so, Powell said, he's calling the president [sic] ludicrous, too." Hey, we agree that the Resident is ludicrous -- in every way!!!

Right-Wing Think Tanks Rule DC

Patrick Anidjar writes for the London Sunday Times: "Conservative think tanks exert a considerable influence over the Bush administration and the US media, with their right-wing agenda considerably at odds with the more moderate view of the State Department, analysts say. Bodies such as the Heritage Foundation and the Hoover Institute have been influential since the days of the Reagan administration, and are now prominent again under Resident George W Bush. 'They certainly influence the people or reinforce the ideas of the people who influence the Resident,' according to political scientist Stephen Wayne of Georgetown University. 'It is not only an influence, it's a reinforcement, really, of the directions which this administration has taken in most of its conservative agenda,' Wayne said, citing the war against Iraq, the 'war on terror' and also the economy."

Pro-Bush Election Theft Propagandist John Lott Masqueraded as His Biggest Fan -- Sweet Mary Rosh

"For three years, [AEI scholar] John Lott pretended to be a young woman. Her name was Mary Rosh. Mary Rosh often spoke sweetly of her days as a student of John's, she gave a glowing Amazon.com review of his book 'More Guns, Less Crime,' she criticized anyone who questioned John's research or his conclusions, and she attacked other researchers in her ardent defense of Lott's idea that more guns on the streets leads to less crime... Then a researcher at the [libertarian] think tank Cato Institute discovered the truth about Mary Rosh and undressed John Lott for all the world to see." Of further interest: "In a study two years ago, Lott reported that the decision by the major television networks to call the Florida election for Al Gore before the polls had closed everywhere in the state led thousands of Republican-leaning voters in the Florida Panhandle not to vote. Other researchers dispute his findings." [WashPost, 2/1/03]

Newt v. Powell: Scaife's New Right (Heritage and AEI) v. the Eastern Establishment (The Carlyle Group)?

Buzzflash writes: "When Newt Gingrich used an April 22nd speech at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) to lay siege to the State Department, it was no accident. The AEI and the Heritage Foundation are the two primary right wing think tanks that flesh out the extremist policies for the White House. The AEI's 'scholars and fellows' include a rogue's gallery of the hard right Republican Party 'intelligentsia,' including Lynne Cheney, Robert Bork, Richard Perle, and Gingrich himself (the Charles Mansion of the Republican Party). No, Newt didn't just get up to the podium and freelance it. The three people running America knew what was coming. Yes, the ruling triumvirate of Donald Rumsfeld (with the portfolio of Foreign Policy and Defense), Karl Rove (with the portfolio of Propaganda and Internal Affairs), and Dick Cheney (with the portfolio of Government Contracting and Business Development) let the morally debauched, but still sharply fanged Gingrich loose to shred Colin Powell."

Did Gingrich Get Nod for AEI Speech?

Jonathan E. Kaplan writes: "Some Bush administration officials were informed in advance of former Speaker Newt Gingrich's April 22 speech lambasting the State Department's bureaucracy. Gingrich's speech caused an immediate furor in light of the on-going policy fight between Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and Secretary of State Colin Powell over whether U.S. security is best enhanced through a multilateral or unilateral approach to world problems... Before delivering his speech, the former Georgia congressman sent it by e-mail to about a dozen members of his personal staff as well as to some unnamed government officials, Rick Tyler, Gingrich's spokesman, told The Hill. 'People got a heads up -- but from the time he sent it to the time he read the speech, he had no conversations with those officials,' said Tyler, who declined to list those who received an advance copy."

Bringing the War Home: Neocons Attack the State Department

Jim Lobe writes: "The opening salvo was delivered on April 22nd by the former Republican Speaker of the House of Representatives (1995-98) and member of the Pentagon's Defense Policy Board, Newt Gingrich, at the neo-conservative American Enterprise Institute (AEI). Gingrich, who is close to Pentagon chief Donald Rumsfeld, aimed the full fury of his rhetorical fire on a building located about two kilometers to the southwest, the State Department, which he accused of actively subverting President [sic] George W. Bush's agenda in Iraq and beyond. It was a stunning attack from someone so closely identified with Rumsfeld and the neo-conservative hawks around him. It also illustrates the degree to which relations between the State Department and the Pentagon hawks has moved to open warfare as both sides jostle for control of policy in Iraq and the broader Middle East."

Rank Dissent: How the Far Right is Greasing the Skids for a GOP Fall

Robert Kuttner writes: "Just when Democrats were feeling stymied by the (short-term) triumph of the Bush Iraq strategy, some self-inflicted wounds have been opened in the coalition. Each, in its own way, reflects the hubris of the far right that dominates this administration. If Bush II goes the way of Bush I, he will have been done in by the excesses of his own camp. On the war front, Colin Powell has been playing the role of benign diplomat, putting a reasonable face on a policy that he abhors. But this isn't enough for the ultras. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and company evidently want total victory, over the State Department as well as Saddam. Rumsfeld, a close ally of the disgraced Newt Gingrich (who serves at Rumsfeld's pleasure on the Defense Policy Board) unleashed the former speaker to give a startlingly undiplomatic anti-Powell diatribe at the American Enterprise Institute, the citadel of neoconservative ideology."

Gingrich Leads NeoCon Attack against Powell

"Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, an adviser to the Pentagon, called on Tuesday for dramatic change at the State Department, which he accused of backing Middle East dictators and undermining the policies of Resident Bush. In what appeared to be part of a battle within the Bush administration [the NeoCons v. the Carlyle Group - the Saudi bidness partners?] on the course of U.S. foreign policy after the invasion of Iraq, Gingrich said: 'America cannot lead the world with a broken instrument of diplomacy. Without bold dramatic change at the State Department, the United States will soon find itself on the defensive everywhere, except militarily... The collapse of the State Department as an effective instrument puts all this at risk,' he told the American Enterprise Institute. The institute is associated with the neoconservative group that backed the invasion of Iraq...Colin Powell irritated the neoconservatives last week when he said he was willing to go to the Syrian capital Damascus."

Buchanan Exposes the Neoconservatives

Things are pretty bad when even Buchanan starts to make sense, and realizes that this Administration is in the clutches of a mad group that planned this war ten years ago.