Thursday, November 16, 2006

Sidney Blumenthal:The neocons' last stand - Guardian

David Seaton's News Links
This phrase from Sydney Blumenthal's article is the "road map" for what is going to be one of the fiercest, nastiest and most poisonous American political battles since the Civil War: "The neocon logic in favour of the Iraq war was that the road to Jerusalem led through Baghdad: an invasion would install an Iraqi democracy that would force the Palestinians to submit to the Israelis. Now near-unanimity exists on Baker's commission to reverse that formula. The central part of a new policy must be, they believe, that the road to Baghdad leads through Jerusalem." The future of the entire political project of rightwing Zionism: the return of the occupied territories of King David's "Greater Israel" and the internationalization of Jerusalem hang in the balance. It will be very interesting to see the political bedfellows this battle will make. DS

Abstract: James Baker - the elder Bush's campaign manager and secretary of state, charged for decades with cleaning up family messes - is now chairman of the Iraq Study Group (ISG) and has assumed the aura of a regent. He is burdened with more tasks than those specified in his commission's brief about Iraq. Not only is he developing a whole new US foreign policy, he is trying to salvage whatever can be retrieved from the wreckage of Bush's presidency for its last two years and to prevent the Republican party, having lost the crown jewel of the Congress, from being permanently tainted. Just before the electoral doom, the neocons scurried off the sinking ship. Richard Perle, former chairman of the defence policy board (DPB), put the onus on Bush in an interview for Vanity Fair: "At the end of the day, you have to hold the president responsible." Kenneth Adelman, another neocon DPB member, who predicted that the invasion of Iraq would be a "cakewalk", said of Bush administration policy makers: "Not only did each of them, individually, have enormous flaws, but together they were deadly, dysfunctional."(...) The neocon logic in favour of the Iraq war was that the road to Jerusalem led through Baghdad: an invasion would install an Iraqi democracy that would force the Palestinians to submit to the Israelis. Now near-unanimity exists on Baker's commission to reverse that formula. The central part of a new policy must be, they believe, that the road to Baghdad leads through Jerusalem. In an article in the Washington Post in July, Brent Scowcroft, the elder Bush's national security adviser, who is very close to Baker, spelled out the notion that security and stability in the region, including Iraq, can only be achieved by re-establishing the Middle East peace process. Scowcroft's piece is a precis of Baker's views as well. On September 15, Philip Zelikow, Condoleezza Rice's legal adviser and a former Scowcroft protege, echoed Scowcroft's ideas in a speech at Washington's Middle East Institute. Afterwards, Cheney pressured Rice and she rebuked her closest deputy, underlining her own weakness. Then the electoral catastrophe intervened, giving Baker leeway (and sidelining Rice). Baker even summoned Tony Blair to testify on Tuesday in order to support a restart of the Middle East peace process. If Baker were to propose that, he knows - although he will not explicitly say so - that its enactment would require the firing of neocons on the national security council and Cheney's staff, in particular Elliott Abrams, the NSC's near-east affairs director. If Baker actually advocates what he thinks, Bush will have to either admit the errors of his ways and the wisdom of his father and his father's men - or cast them and caution aside once again. READ ALL

1 comment:

imsmall said...

THE LOST TRIBE

As without grace, but squandering
The air, this lost group wandering
Pretends it has a map to heaven,
Believes the hour now eleven--

So throws aside what it has known,
All Darwin´s theories, all that loan
Of wisdom come from Greece and Rome
Because it seeks a better home.

Philosophies of Rome and Greece,
No further need of these foresees,
For there will be no struggle, strife
When it has met the afterlife.

With grim anticipation waging
War as ought be but hell´s presaging--
This group has trampled left and right
Its heathen villifiers quite.

That truer roadmap it disdains
Which "the humanities" explains,
So liberal arts and science both
Are lost to its disdainful sloth.

Yet, mental laziness and ego
Accompany, where does that league go,
Condemnatory of all other
Interpretation by a brother.

Theirs be the loss; for it is seen
Upon its pathway certain, keen,
But ancient fallacies to trace
It moves ahead without much grace.