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Articles -- Think tanks

Cato Institute: Upholding Liberty in America

Origins of Regime Change in Iraq

Advisors of Influence: Nine Members of the Defense Policy Board Have Ties to Defense Contractors


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News Articles

Richard Perle Resigns From Advisory Panel

A Debate Over U.S. 'Empire' Builds in Unexpected Circles

From heroes to targets

U.S. pullback in S. Korea also alarming to N. Korea

Defense deputy gets authority for military tribunals

US General Condemns Iraq Failures

US losing the peace in Afghanistan

Disturbing Level of Unrest in Iraq

Rebuilding of Iraq is in Chaos, Say British

Superb Article -- The Mideast: Neocons on the Line

The trouble with Delivering Democracy Abroad

PNAC Proponents Inflated WMD Threat to Promote Iraq War

Debating Empire Prior to 9/11

Familiar Hawks Take Aim at Syria

A think tank war: Why old Europe says no

North Korea and the US 'on a slide towards conflict'

Hans Blix: Iraq war planned long in advance; banned arms not the priority

Viewing the War as a Lesson to the World

Opposition groups reject US military rule plan

US begins the process of 'regime change' in Iraq

$60 billion Rebuild Iraq Plan 'freezes out' UN, favors U.S.

State Dept. Report: Democracy Domino Theory 'Not Credible'

The Fight Yet to Come

Op-Ed: The Pentagon's (CIA) Man in Iraq

Rumsfeld urged Clinton to attack Iraq

Hints of PNAC on CNN: "World War IV"?

4 years before 9/11, plan was set

CBS News: Plans For Iraq Attack Began On 9/11

ABC News: The Plan

The Thirty-Year Itch

The president's real goal in Iraq

Bush planned Iraq 'regime change' before becoming President

This war is brought to you by...


Outside Analysis

The Hawks Loudly Express Their Second Thoughts

Jim Lobe's Neo-Con Focus Area from IPS

Empire Builders: Neoconservatives and their blueprint for US power

Pentagon Office Home to Neo-Con Network

"Regime Change" Ambitions in Iran

The Neo-Conservative Ascendancy in the Bush Administration

Is the Neoconservative Moment Over?

The Conservative Split I: An Introduction to Neoconservatism

The Conservative Split III: A Call to Action

Is Iraq the opening salvo in a war to remake the world?

The Bush Foreign Policy Team's Shared Vision

Briefing - The rise of the Washington "neo-cons"

Op-Ed: From Republic to Empire

Puppet Show: Will Ahmed Chalabi Govern Post-War Iraq?

1958-1991, Iraq: A Classic Case of Divide and Conquer

Richard Perle's connections


Outside Commentary

Neoconservatism Made Kristol Clear

Ilana Mercer: Bush is a Neoconservative

Rep. Ron Paul's Speech to Congress: "Neo-conned"

Pay no attention to the neocon behind the curtain

Bad Iraq Data From Start to Finish

The Conservative Split II: Buchanan Weighs In

Op-Ed: War Without End?

Analysis: Power Americana

Op-Ed: Wolfowitz of Arabia leads charge to a culture of war

Op-Ed: Nationalists Hijack Washington

Op-Ed: Blood Money

Op-Ed: Of Gods and Mortals and Empire


PNACWatch Commentary

Disturbing Level of Unrest in Iraq


Site Admin

Welcome to PNAC.Info


The PNAC Opposition

Other PNAC/Neo-con Exposure Sites

Activists seek PNAC repudiation from congressman


April 25, 2003

Analysis: Wolfowitz's 1992 vision as 2002 U.S. Foreign Policy Reality

Another section in PBS/Frontline's excellent "The War Behind Closed Doors" feature has analysis of Paul Wolfowitz's then-controversial "Defense Planning Guidance" draft, and its resemblance to the Bush administration's current foreign policy approach. The anaylsis is in the form of interviews with four people "in the know" in Washington D.C. -- most notably William Kristol, editor of the Weekly Standard and PNAC Chairman, whose interview will be featured in a separate entry here soon. The other experts are former Middle East envoy Dennis Ross, Washington Post reporter Barton Gellman, and John Lewis Gaddis, Professor of Political Science at Yale University.

The main page features select questions and answers with each of the 4 experts, with links to the full interviews. Here's an excerpt from one of those selections, with reporter Barton Gellman:

What were [the '92 Wolfowitz Defense Planning Guidance draft's] ramifications?

You have to take yourself back to 1992. This is the first time that the Defense Department gathers itself to say, "What is our new strategic mission in the world now that there is no more Soviet Union?"...

[And] they said, "Our number one mission in the world, now that we are the sole superpower is to make sure we stay that way." They wanted to pocket that gain. And what was so politically insensitive in this internal document, which wasn't meant for distribution, is it talked about not only Russia, but Germany, Japan, India, all as potential regional hegemons that could rise up to challenge the United States as at least a regional and, potentially, a global superpower. They said their number one mission is to quash that.

What was the reaction?

Well, most of the countries I just named were on some kind of friendly terms, or central allies of the United States. They were none too pleased to be named as potential rivals. The public reaction was, "Good God, we're supposed to have a peace dividend now. The Cold War is over. Let's get on with our lives. Of course, stay strong enough to protect ourselves. But what in the world are you doing, going out there and looking for trouble?"

It was very controversial in Congress. There was an enormous amount of commentary by the opinion leaders saying, "This is way over the top." And, it was an election year. And they caved.

Read all the excerpts and interviews here.

And certainly don't miss the interview with William Kristol, which is a surprisingly frank and revealing look at how Wolfowitz's once-controversial agenda came to be wholly embraced by President Bush in the wake of 9-11. That interview is a "must-read".


Posted by Lance Brown at 09:15 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Is Iraq the opening salvo in a war to remake the world?

From The American Prospect:

Just the Beginning
Is Iraq the opening salvo in a war to remake the world?

By Robert Dreyfuss
Issue Date: 4.1.03

For months Americans have been told that the United States is going to war against Iraq in order to disarm Saddam Hussein, remove him from power, eliminate Iraq's alleged stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction, and prevent Baghdad from blackmailing its neighbors or aiding terrorist groups. But the Bush administration's hawks, especially the neoconservatives who provide the driving force for war, see the conflict with Iraq as much more than that. It is a signal event, designed to create cataclysmic shock waves throughout the region and around the world, ushering in a new era of American imperial power. It is also likely to bring the United States into conflict with several states in the Middle East. Those who think that U.S. armed forces can complete a tidy war in Iraq, without the battle spreading beyond Iraq's borders, are likely to be mistaken.

"I think we're going to be obliged to fight a regional war, whether we want to or not," says Michael Ledeen, a former U.S. national-security official and a key strategist among the ascendant flock of neoconservative hawks, many of whom have taken up perches inside the U.S. government. Asserting that the war against Iraq can't be contained, Ledeen says that the very logic of the global war on terrorism will drive the United States to confront an expanding network of enemies in the region. "As soon as we land in Iraq, we're going to face the whole terrorist network," he says, including the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), Hezbollah, Hamas, Islamic Jihad and a collection of militant splinter groups backed by nations -- Iran, Syria and Saudi Arabia -- that he calls "the terror masters."

"It may turn out to be a war to remake the world," says Ledeen.

Full Story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 03:47 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

1992 "Defense Planning Guidance" Draft Excerpts

This story from PBS/Frontline's "The War Behind Closed Doors" highlights excerpts from Paul Wolfowitz's then-controversial "Defense Planning Guidance" draft. Since then, many of the goals in the draft have become the hallmarks of the Bush foreign policy doctrine.

From the Frontline page:

The 46-page classified document circulated for several weeks at senior levels in the Pentagon. But controversy erupted after it was leaked to The New York Times and The Washington Post and the White House ordered then-Defense Secretary Dick Cheney to rewrite it.

Three primary points from the draft:

· The number one objective of U.S. post-Cold War political and military strategy should be preventing the emergence of a rival superpower.

· Another major U.S. objective should be to safeguard U.S. interests and promote American values.

· If necessary, the United States must be prepared to take unilateral action.

Full story with key excerpts and quotes from the DPG draft

A professor at Yale has posted the full text of the Washington Post article from 1992, which includes much fuller excerpts from the DPG draft.

Posted by Lance Brown at 04:37 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Op-Ed: War Without End?

WAR WITHOUT END?
by David Remnick
The New Yorker
Issue of 2003-04-21 and 28
Posted 2003-04-14

Saddam Hussein, who came to power in 1979 declaring his intention to combine the glory of Nebuchadnezzar with the methods of Josef Stalin, no longer rules Iraq, and not to feel relief at the prospect of a world without him is to be possessed of a grudging heart. In a region well stocked with tyrants and autocrats, Saddam was singular in his ambitions, though not in the way proposed by his cult of personality. His record of murder, torture, aggression, intimidation, and subjugation is inscribed in the documentary reports of Human Rights Watch and in the souls of the traumatized ex-subjects who have survived to hammer at his fallen monuments. And yet it would also require a constricted conscience to declare the Anglo-American invasion finished business while so much of the world remains alarmed or enraged at the level of its presumption—and while so many dead go uncounted. It is hard to put a name to what has happened (to what is happening still), not least because the Bush Administration’s intentions, both within Iraq and beyond it, are still a question of deepest concern.

Historical analogy has been a crude instrument in the service of moral and political certainty. For a while, we did without history. We were at the end of history, our circumstance novel beyond compare. Modernity was triumphant, and it would bring democracy everywhere and a Dow without limit. But an attack on an iconic center of modernity on September 11, 2001, and then a war in an ancient place, along the Tigris and the Euphrates, brought history back in a tidal rush. And so this has been a period of incessant historical reference. To the most unequivocal hawks, Saddam was Hitler; 2003 was 1938; Kofi Annan, Jacques Chirac, and Colin Powell were the heirs of Neville Chamberlain. As the doves saw things, Bush and his Cabinet members were manipulating the facts the way Lyndon Johnson did at the Gulf of Tonkin, and were determined to invade and raze a foreign country in the pursuit of a new kind of domino theory. The invasion of Iraq, to its fiercest opponents, was sure to be the Athenians’ vainglorious assault on Sicily as described in “The Peloponnesian War,” the horror of 1914 depicted in “The Guns of August,” the naïve folly of “The Quiet American.” Where some saw the liberation of Paris, others envisioned a Mesopotamian Stalingrad.

Even now, as Baghdad falls after three weeks of startling military advance, one can go on choosing among images and reference points. The “jubilant” crowd described in detail late last week by the Associated Press encourages one kind of analogy, the photograph of a hideously wounded child in Time quite another. Americans will not write this history on their terms alone, and the way in which it is written, absorbed, and understood by us, by the Europeans, by the Islamic world, and, most of all, by the Iraqis themselves will depend largely upon what comes next. What are the Administration’s true ambitions?

Full Story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 03:07 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Origins of Regime Change in Iraq

This brief provides an excellent short overview of the growth of the PNAC foreign policy wave, from Paul Wolfowitz's 1992 Defense Planning Guidance document (mentioned below), to fall 2002, when the final press for regime change in Iraq began. The brief is by Joseph Cirincione, a Senior Associate and Director of the Non-Proliferation Project at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. You can hear him in a good segment on NPR's Fresh Air (as well as the PNAC's William Kristol) here.

Origins of Regime Change in Iraq
Proliferation Brief, Volume 6, Number 5
Wednesday, March 19, 2003

Long before September 11, before the first inspections in Iraq had started, a small group of influential officials and experts in Washington were calling for regime change in Iraq. Some never wanted to end the 1991 war. Many are now administration officials. Their organization, dedication and brilliance offer much to admire, even for those who disagree with the policies they advocate.

We have assembled on our web site links to the key documents produced since 1992 by this group, usually known as neo-conservatives, and analysis of their efforts. They offer a textbook case of how a small, organized group can determine policy in a large nation, even when the majority of officials and experts originally scorned their views.

In the Beginning

In 1992, Paul Wolfowitz, then-under secretary of defense for policy, supervised the drafting of the Defense Policy Guidance document. Wolfowitz had objected to what he considered the premature ending of the 1991 Iraq War. In the new document, he outlined plans for military intervention in Iraq as an action necessary to assure "access to vital raw material, primarily Persian Gulf oil" and to prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and threats from terrorism.

The guidance called for preemptive attacks and ad hoc coalitions but said that the U.S. should be ready to act alone when "collective action cannot be orchestrated." The primary goal of U.S. policy should be to prevent the rise of any nation that could challenge the United States. When the document leaked to the New York Times, it proved so extreme that it had to be rewritten. These concepts are now part of the new U.S. National Security Strategy.

Full Story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 02:14 AM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

April 21, 2003

Advisors of Influence: Nine Members of the Defense Policy Board Have Ties to Defense Contractors

This special report by the Center for Public Integrity looks at the people in the Defense Policy Board, and the strong connections that many of them have to defense contractors that do major business with the U.S.

Until recently Richard Perle, a PNAC principal, was Chairman of the Defense Policy Board. He resigned on March 27th of this year, after an article in the New Yorker brought to light his apparent conflict of interest. He remains on the board, but not in the position of Chairman. The Chairman, but not the other members of the Board, is governed by "special government employee" disclosure and conflict-of-interest rules.

Douglas Feith, mentioned in the report as the person who appoints the members of the DPB, is also affiliated with the PNAC, as is former CIA Director James Woolsey, who is one of the nine Board members with ties to major government contractors mentioned in the report.

Advisors of Influence: Nine Members of the Defense Policy Board Have Ties to Defense Contractors
By André Verlöy and Daniel Politi
Data by Aron Pilhofer

Of the 30 members of the Defense Policy Board, the government-appointed group that advises the Pentagon, at least nine have ties to companies that have won more than $76 billion in defense contracts in 2001 and 2002. Four members are registered lobbyists, one of whom represents two of the three largest defense contractors.

The board’s chairman, Richard Perle, resigned yesterday, March 27, 2003, amid allegations of conflicts of interest for his representation of companies with business before the Defense Department, although he will remain a member of the board. Eight of Perle’s colleagues on the board have ties to companies with significant contracts from the Pentagon.

Members of the board disclose their business interests annually to the Pentagon, but the disclosures are not available to the public. “The forms are filed with the Standards of Conduct Office which review the filings to make sure they are in compliance with government ethics,” Pentagon spokesman Maj. Ted Wadsworth told the Center for Public Integrity.

The companies with ties to Defense Policy Board members include prominent firms like Boeing, TRW, Northrop Grumman, Lockheed Martin and Booz Allen Hamilton and smaller players like Symantec Corp., Technology Strategies and Alliance Corp., and Polycom Inc.

...

According to its charter, the board was set up in 1985 to provide the Secretary of Defense “with independent, informed advice and opinion concerning major matters of defense policy.” The members are selected by and report to the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy—currently Douglas Feith, a former Reagan administration official. All members are approved by the Secretary of Defense. The board’s quarterly meetings—normally held over a two-day period—are classified, and each session’s proceedings are summarized for the Defense Secretary. The board does not write reports or vote on issues. Feith, according to the charter, can call additional meetings if required. Notices of the meetings are filed at least 15 days before they are held in the Federal Register.

The board, whose list of members reads like a who’s who of former high-level government and military officials, focuses on long-term policy issues such as the strategic implications of defense policies and tactical considerations, including what types of weapons the military should develop.

Michael O’Hanlon, a military expert at The Brookings Institution, told Time magazine in November 2002 that the board “is just another [public relations] shop for Rumsfeld.” Former members said that the character of the board changed under Rumsfeld. Previously the board was more bi-partisan; under Rumsfeld, it has become more interested in policy changes. The board has no official role in policy decisions.

Full Report...

The following links are featured on the same page:

RELATED LINKS
Defense Policy Board Advisory Committee members
Corporate Affiliations of Defense Policy Board Members
ADDITIONAL RESOURCE
For additional information, visit the Web site of PBS' "Now With Bill Moyers."

Posted by Lance Brown at 07:46 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 20, 2003

The Bush Foreign Policy Team's Shared Vision

Here is an extensive analysis piece that first appeared in the Washington Post on September 30, 2001. It is by James Mann, former diplomatic correspondent for the Los Angeles Times, and senior writer-in-residence at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. It traces the development of the foreign policy philosophies of most of the top members of the Bush foreign policy team, from the 1970's until September 2001. At the end, he talks about how Bush will need to overcome divisions in his team in order to "collaborate on behalf of a common worldview -- the vision of a powerful America that all the key players have shared and pursued for the past quarter-century." Even as this article was published, those divisions were already being "overcome", in the form of PNAC members challenging Colin Powell's less-hawkish approach. It's clear now which "camp" prevailed in that contest for influence.

This article has a lot of information detailing the ascendancy of Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney, and Paul Wolfowitz, and Richard Armitage, all affiliated with the PNAC. It's a 4-page .PDF file.

The Bush Team Shares a Vision But Not How To Reach It
The Washington Post
September 30, 2001
By James Mann

Suddenly, the Bush administration's foreign policy team occupies center stage in Washington. After eight months of focus on domestic issues such as the tax cut, the nation will now be watching anxiously to see if the administration can deal with the rest of the world in a way that will prevent further attacks on American soil. Luckily, Bush's foreign policy advisers have a remarkable record of experience to draw upon. They're going to need it.

For the men and women at the highest levels of Bush's foreign policy apparatus, America's new war against terrorism is the culmination of a long journey. The members of Bush's inner circle -- Vice President Dick Cheney, Secretary of State Colin Powell, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, national security adviser Condoleezza Rice, Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz and Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage-- share a decades-long intellectual history. They worked alongside one another in the Ford, Reagan and first Bush administrations. They have battled with America's enemies, and also, on occasion, skirmished with one another.

The Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon will test, as never before, the strength of the ideas for which this team's members have all worked -- the notions that the United States should remain militarily strong and globally deployed, that it can count on its allies, that it should protect its interests in the Middle East, and that, above all, American power is not beginning to decline. Taken together, the current Bush team represents the generation that believes in unrivaled American power -- an America so strong that it has no need to reach accommodations with anyone, neither the Soviet Union or China in the Cold War period, nor Russia or China today.

Full Story... (.pdf file)

Posted by Lance Brown at 04:15 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Briefing - The rise of the Washington "neo-cons"

This "Editor briefing" in the U.K.'s Guardian Unlimited uses short quotes from various news and opinion sources as "answers" to a series of basic questions about the "neo-cons" -- the term frequently used to refer to the group behind the PNAC's (and now America's) foreign policy model. The format leaves a little to be desired, but the "briefing" provides a decent basic summary, and its question & answer format makes it easier to digest than many of the longer articles about the PNAC. This excerpt on the Middle East plan is the best example of that:

And their Middle East plan? The US establishes a reasonably democratic, pro-western government in Iraq. When Palestinians see Iraqis beginning to enjoy real freedom and economic opportunity [they'll] demand the Palestinian Authority reform politically and negotiate with Israel. A democratic Iraq will also hasten the fall of the fundamentalist Shia mullahs in Iran, whose citizens are gradually adopting anti-fanatic, pro-western sympathies. Jordan's pro-western Hashemite monarchy would likely come into full bloom. Syria would be no more than a pale reminder of the bad old days. (If they made trouble, a US invasion would take care of them, too). The corrupt regimes of Saudi Arabia and Egypt would [look like] holdouts against the democratic tide. We could decide whether to ignore them as harmless throwbacks to the old days or deal with them, too.

Joshua Micah Marshall in Washington Monthly, April

The rise of the Washington 'neo-cons'
The Editor briefing
Monday April 14, 2003
The Guardian

Posted by Lance Brown at 12:43 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 19, 2003

PNAC on NPR's "Fresh Air"

This audio segment from April 1st's Fresh Air program on National Public Radio starts with an excellent summation of the PNAC's goals, as explained by Joseph Cirincione from the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. He's opposed to the PNAC's plan for the world, but he gives a pretty fair appraisal of the benefits that the PNAC folks claim to seek, which he follows with a very succinct statement of why he opposes them.

He outlines the development of the PNAC coalition, discussing the 1992 Defense Planning Guidance document drafted by Paul Wolfowitz, the 1998 letter written by PNAC members to President Clinton urging regime change in Iraq, the 2000 "Rebuilding America's Defenses" report, and the 2001 National Security Strategy, as well as a number of other episodes that have come together to bring us to the U.S. foreign policy stance that we see today.

The next half of the segment features William Kristol, editor of The Weekly Standard and Chairman of the PNAC. He offers responses to many of the criticisms advanced by Mr. Cirincione, and answers host Terry Gross' further questions.

The two segments together total about 45 minutes, and require either Real Player or Windows Media Player 9 in order to listen to them.

Joseph Cirincione and William Kristol on NPR's "Fresh Air" with Terry Gross, April 1, 2003

Posted by Lance Brown at 11:18 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 18, 2003

Familiar Hawks Take Aim at Syria

With the war on Iraq being gradually replaced by the occupation of Iraq, it seems that Syria has come into the sights of the Bush administration as the next adversary to be confronted in its war on terrorism.

This is consistent with the strategic vision of the Project for the New American Century, which declared in its first formal response to the terrorist attacks on 9/11 that,

…any war against terrorism must target Hezbollah. We believe the administration should demand that Iran and Syria immediately cease all military, financial, and political support for Hezbollah and its operations. Should Iran and Syria refuse to comply, the administration should consider appropriate measures of retaliation against these known state sponsors of terrorism.

-Project for the New American Century (PNAC), Letter to President Bush on the War on Terrorism, September 20, 2001

As this excerpt indicates, Iran is also viewed as a threat to be dealt with somewhere down the road, but it has not received nearly as many admonitions from the Bush administration as Iraq’s neighbor to the west. Clearly, the pressure and focus right now is on Syria.

Perhaps it should come as little surprise that the necessity of confronting Syria, possibly with military force, was first articulated some three years ago by the Middle East Forum, a think tank with strong links to the PNAC. Jim Lobe of the Asia Times has the story.

Familiar hawks take aim
By Jim Lobe
April 17, 2003

Many of the same people who led the campaign for war against Iraq signed a report released three years ago that called for using military force to disarm Syria of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and to end its military presence in Lebanon.

Among the signers are several senior members of the administration of President George W Bush, including the chief Middle East aide on the National Security Council, Elliott Abrams; Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Douglas Feith; Undersecretary of State for Global Affairs Paula Dobriansky, and Michael Rubin and David Wurmser, senior consultants to both the State Department and the Pentagon on Iraq policy.

Also signing were Richard Perle, the powerful former chairman of the Defense Policy Board; former United Nations ambassador Jeane Kirkpatrick; Frank Gaffney, a former Perle aide who heads the Center for Defense Policy; Michael Ledeen, another close Perle collaborator at the American Enterprise Institute; and David Steinmann, chairman of the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs.

The study, "Ending Syria's Occupation of Lebanon: The US Role", was co-authored by Daniel Pipes, who has just been nominated by Bush to a post at the US Institute of Peace, and Ziad Abdelnour, who heads a group founded by him called the United States Committee for a Free Lebanon (USCFL). The study was released by Pipes' group, the Middle East Forum…

Full story...

Posted by Bill Connolly at 08:50 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 16, 2003

Op-Ed: From Republic to Empire

Note: PNAC.info has a general policy of not posting material which seems to be overly biased or partisan, or which could be construed as a personal attack on President Bush or members of his administration. The following opinion piece could possibly seen by some as falling into that second category, but given the author's very impressive credentials, the non-hostile tone of his insightful analysis, and the vital relevance of the subject matter, it would be irresponsible of us not to share it with you.

From republic to empire
By ROGER MORRIS
Monday, April 14, 2003

[Roger Morris, a member of the National Security Council under presidents Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon, is the author of Richard Milhous Nixon: The Rise of an American Politician and Partners in Power: The Clintons and Their America.]

Excerpts:

Whatever his triumph in Iraq, George W. Bush already enjoyed a victory of historic proportions in the United States. By unique dominance of Congress and the rest of government, and to the approval of the American media and an impressive majority in the polls, Mr. Bush had acquired power beyond the grasp of any predecessor. Before U.S. forces ever roared through Baghdad, their Commander-in-Chief was America's most imperial president.

..

It would be easy to attribute this singular massing of power to predictable chauvinist politics in America's reaction to the shock of Sept. 11. There is comfort in thinking of Mr. Bush as one more president riding the crest of a breaking wave -- and that the tide will turn back, as always, to constitutional balance. Yet, even apart from the uncertain course of the "war on terrorism," or Washington's open-ended evocation of it, that optimistic view ignores decisive new realities in U.S. politics -- and the emerging reality of George W. Bush himself.

Today's imperial presidency looms over political parties and a Congress very different from those of the recent past. President Johnson faced formidable critics from his own party, such as senators William Fulbright, Robert Kennedy and Eugene McCarthy. Mr. Nixon fought to the end a Democratic-ruled Senate and House, and the resistance of many influential Republican moderates. President Bush, on the other hand, will deliver his Iraqi war victory speech to houses of Congress dominated by conservative Republicans, with GOP moderates a rarity and rebels extinct. Their religious fundamentalist leaders, as well as the rank and file, not only back the President's new reach with domestic repression and foreign retribution, but also share the larger geo-strategic urge to American hegemony behind the war on Iraq.

...

Not that this should surprise us. Shortly before he died in 1989, the eminent American writer Robert Penn Warren, author of All The King's Men, a novel about a democratic demagogue and dictator, was asked if he foresaw another president with too much power.

"Well, it'll probably be someone you least expect under circumstances nobody foresaw," he said. "And, of course, it'll come with a standing ovation from Congress."

Full Story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 05:08 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

A think tank war: Why old Europe says no

This is an excellent article outlining the PNAC, its political origins and rise, and many of the feelings of opposition to the PNAC model of foreign policy and defense strategy, including former President Jimmy Carter.

A think tank war: Why old Europe says no
By Margo Kingston
March 7 2003

An excerpt:

One person who is absolutely unequivocal about the problem of anti-Americanism is former President Jimmy Carter. He judges the PNAC agenda in the same way. At first, argues Carter, Bush responded to the challenge of September 11 in an effective and intelligent way, "but in the meantime a group of conservatives worked to get approval for their long held ambitions under the mantle of 'the war on terror'".

The restrictions on civil rights in the US and at Guantanamo, cancellation of international accords, "contempt for the rest of the world", and finally an attack on Iraq "although there is no threat to the US from Baghdad" - all these things will have devastating consequences, according to Carter.

"This entire unilateralism", warns the ex-President, "will increasingly isolate the US from those nations that we need in order to do battle with terrorism".

Full story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 02:42 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 12, 2003

North Korea and the US 'on a slide towards conflict'

This article about current U.S. and North Korean relations provides a good illustration of one of the biggest problems with having a foreign policy that is dependent on other nations yielding to the threat of overwhelming U.S. military force, or "falling into line" if you will. Many countries' governments will see such a policy as a threat to their country's sovereignty and to their own administration. Instead of embracing a peace on terms defined unilaterally by the U.S., they will instead prepare for the eventual conflict between their interests and "American interests", as defined by the U.S. government.

One would be hard-pressed to find a better example than North Korea, which has maintained a defensive posture toward the United States since the two countries became enemies upon the United States' entry in the Korean conflict over 50 years ago. The North Koreans have one of the world's largest armies, they are believed to possess the ability to hit the U.S. with a nuclear weapon, and they are (if you'll pardon the phrase) hell-bent on not being controlled or conquered by the U.S.. They've stated openly their desire to develop their nuclear weapons capability as quickly as possible, for the stated reason that they feel the U.S. is an active threat to their national security.

Here's an excerpt from this disturbing article:

North Korea fervently believes it is next on America's list for pre-emptive strikes, says Strong. It takes George Bush's rhetoric in his 'axis of evil' speech as a very real threat to its national security. Washington says it seeks a diplomatic end, but has not ruled out a military solution.

'There is such a complete breakdown of trust and confidence between these two countries that they are now unable to read the intentions of the other so there is real potential now for this to escalate into conflict,' Strong said.

He said the North Koreans were prepared for war but 'anxious for peace'. The stand-off between the two nations first flared in October when US officials said North Korea had admitted having a secret nuclear programme in violation of a 1994 agreement. As punishment, Washington and its allies suspended promised oil shipments.

North Korea retaliated by taking steps to reactivate mothballed facilities capable of making nuclear bombs and withdrawing from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. It also deported UN monitors.

It claims it pulled out of the treaty because non-nuclear countries were supposed to be protected by nuclear powers like the US, not threatened.

Full story: North Korea and the US 'on a slide towards conflict'

Posted by Lance Brown at 04:00 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Hans Blix: Iraq war planned long in advance; banned arms not the priority

Hans Blix's recent assertion that the Bush Administration was planning to invade Iraq regardless of the presence of weapons of mass destruction seems to fit in with the view expressed by the PNAC in September 2000. In fact, they go one step further, saying that Saddam Hussein's regime isn't even the real issue at hand:

Indeed, the United States has for decades sought to play a more permanent role in Gulf regional security. While the unresolved conflict with Iraq provides the immediate justification, the need for a substantial American force presence in the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein.

-Project for the New American Century (PNAC), Rebuilding America's Defenses, page 14

Blix also pointed out something which is one of the biggest problems with the PNAC approach to foreign policy -- that it encourages potential enemies of the US to pursue arming themselves with vigor. He specifically cites North Korea's recent declarations of defiance:

"The United States maintains that the war on Iraq is designed to send a signal to other countries to keep away from weapons of mass destruction. But people are getting a different message. Take the announcement North Korea (news - web sites) has just made. It's tantamount to saying 'if you let in the inspectors, like Iraq did, you get attacked'.

North Korea accused the United States on Sunday of using a UN Security Council discussion of its nuclear programme as a "prelude to war" and warned that it would fully mobilise and strengthen its forces.

"It's an important problem," Blix continued. "If a country perceives that its security is guaranteed, it won't need to consider weapons of mass destruction. This security guarantee is the first line of defence against the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction."

Full story:
Iraq war planned long in advance; banned arms not the priority: Blix

Posted by Lance Brown at 03:17 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 10, 2003

Analysis: Power Americana

This article by Paul Reynolds of BBC News is an insightful and refreshingly un-hysterical analysis of the PNAC's influence on current U.S. policy, and some of the reverberations that policy shift will have throughout the world, with a focus on Europe. One passage in particular stood out for me, because it seemed to reinforce the theory discussed in this entry -- that excessive (U.S.) nationalism will likely result in corresponding increases in nationalism elsewhere. Here's the passage:

In a speech to the Chicago Council on Foreign Relations, Chris Patten, former UK Government minister, Hong Kong governor and now European foreign affairs commissioner, said that "in order to be a more credible partner and in some cases to be a counterweight, Europe has to invest in its own security".

Written in early March 2003, Reynolds' analysis is an excellent medium-length overview of the proposed American Century in the context of (relatively) current events.

Analysis: Power Americana

Posted by Lance Brown at 03:29 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Viewing the War as a Lesson to the World

This article in The New York Times contains a lot of food for thought about the Iraq War as a key step in a broader agenda, including the comment by President Bush (quoted below) that Maureen Dowd referred to in a recent column (referred to by us here). It discusses the situations with Syria and North Korea, and the possibility that they, along with other possible adversaries around the world, might be more willing to 'cooperate' now that the U.S. has shown what it can/will do to those that don't.
(The NYTimes requires free registration, which is well worth it.)

Viewing the War as a Lesson to the World
By DAVID E. SANGER

WASHINGTON, April 5 — Shortly after Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld issued a stark warning to Iran and Syria last week, declaring that any "hostile acts" they committed on behalf of Iraq might prompt severe consequences, one of President Bush's closest aides stepped into the Oval Office to warn him that his unpredictable defense secretary had just raised the specter of a broader confrontation.

Mr. Bush smiled a moment at the latest example of Mr. Rumsfeld's brazenness, recalled the aide. Then he said one word — "Good" — and went back to work.

It was a small but telling moment on the sidelines of the war. For a year now, the president and many in his team have privately described the confrontation with Saddam Hussein as something of a demonstration conflict, an experiment in forcible disarmament. It is also the first war conducted under a new national security strategy, which explicitly calls for intervening before a potential enemy can strike.

...

"Iraq is not just about Iraq," a senior administration official who played a crucial role in putting the strategy together said in an interview last week. It was "a unique case," the official said. But in Mr. Bush's mind, the official added, "It is of a type."

In fact, some administration officials are talking about the lessons Mr. Bush expects the world to take from this conflict, and they are debating about where he may decide to focus when it is over.

...

Some hawks inside the administration are convinced that Iraq will serve as a cautionary example of what can happen to other states that refuse to abandon their programs to build weapons of mass destruction, an argument that John R. Bolton, the under secretary of state for arms control and international security, has made several times recently.

The administration's more pragmatic wing fears that the war's lesson will be just the opposite: that the best way to avoid American military action is to build a fearsome arsenal quickly and make the cost of conflict too high for Washington.

Full story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 02:03 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Op-Ed: Wolfowitz of Arabia leads charge to a culture of war

This commentary by columnist Maureen Dowd is charged with cynicism, but it raises two points that I thought made it worth sharing. One is the idea that the Iraq War was a sort of test case of the American public's tolerance for the sacrifice of war. The other is two citings of recent references to a brewing conflict with Syria, which is otherwise being officially downplayed by Colin Powell and Tony Blair.

An excerpt:

But Mr. Wolfowitz played the diplomat on Sunday, gliding past probing on whether the neo-conservatives' dreams of other campaigns in Syria, Iran and North Korea would come true. Pressed, he said: 'There's got to be change in Syria as well.'

And The New York Times reported that when a Bush aide told the President George W. Bush that the hard-boiled Mr. Rumsfeld had also been shaking a fist at Syria, he smiled and said one word: 'Good.'

Full commentary...

Posted by Lance Brown at 01:27 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 09, 2003

Opposition groups reject US military rule plan

This article from London's Financial Times illustrates one of the inherent perils of "regime change" from above -- the distance between the perceptions of the changers and those of the people of the country whose regime is being changed, about what the regime should change to, and how.

Opposition groups reject US military rule plan
By Gareth Smyth in Salahaddin, northern Iraq
Published: April 7 2003 5:00 | Last Updated: April 7 2003 5:00

As the time arrives for decisions about running Iraq, both the main Kurdish and Shia opposition groups yesterday rejected US plans to put Jay Garner, a retired general, in charge.


"We are concerned that this looks more and more like an occupation," said Hamid al-Bayati, a senior official of the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq (Sciri), the most prominent Iranian-backed Shia group.

"With this approach the Americans will face both security and administrative problems."

Fawzi Hariri, an official in the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), added: "We will always be grateful to the Americans for overthrowing Saddam Hussein, but they need to understand that military rule just won't work."

...

Many in the northern-based opposition are privately scathing about those they regard as being dependent on the US - meaning both the Iraqi-Americans gathering in Kuwait and the Iraqi National Congress (INC), a group long supported by the Pentagon and receiving US funding.

"What is their constituency? It's not inside Iraq," said a senior KDP official. "They don't even have a medium for talking to people in the country."

Full story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 08:38 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Puppet Show: Will Ahmed Chalabi Govern Post-War Iraq?

Here's an article from Reason Online about the apparent PNAC favorite for leading a post-war Iraq. Though to be fair, the article linked at the end of this excerpt casts doubt, from the mouths of Paul Wolfowitz and Ahmed Chalabi, about both the idea of the U.S. "picking" a new Iraqi leader, and about the idea that Chalabi is interested in being that leader.

Puppet Show
Will Ahmed Chalabi Govern Post-War Iraq?

By Sara Rimensnyder

Iraqi opposition figure Ahmed Chalabi arrived in Southern Iraq today, airlifted there by U.S. military forces, according to the Los Angeles Times. The move raised speculation that the Pentagon hopes to bolster his chances of governing a post-war Iraq.

The speculation is nothing new, of course. Chalabi, head of the Iraqi National Congress resistance group and a Shi'a Muslim, has long been a highly controversial favorite of administration officials such as Vice President Dick Cheney, Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, and former Pentagon Defense Policy Board chairman Richard Perle. And though his relations with the CIA have soured completely since he led a failed 1996 uprising, he was once supported by at least $97 million in agency and congressional funds—money which detractors have accused Chalabi of mismanaging.

...

There's one thing most everybody seems to agree about: Chalabi has little to no support within Iraq. The Los Angeles Times, 60 Minutes and other news outlets have reported that to officials at both the CIA and the State Department, this alone should remove him from consideration as post-war Iraq's new leader, since he would be perceived as a U.S. puppet. Several members of Congress have aired similar concerns.

Full story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 04:52 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 07, 2003

US begins the process of 'regime change' in Iraq

There are many signs in this article that the U.S. plans to set up a U.S.-controlled government in Iraq -- or at least to dominate the setup process into the foreseeable future. Woven throughout the article are signs of both nationalism and imperialism -- a very dangerous combination.

US begins the process of 'regime change'

Ed Vulliamy in New York and Kamal Ahmed
Sunday April 6, 2003
The Observer

The US is ready to install the first leg of an interim government for the new Iraq as early as Tuesday, even while fighting still rages in Baghdad, officials said yesterday.

America's readiness to establish the first stages of a civil administration to run post-war Iraq comes at lightning speed and constitutes a rebuff to European ambitions to stall on the process until some kind of role for the United Nations is agreed.

It was reported yesterday that the National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice has also ruled out any key role for the UN.

The decision to proceed with an embryonic government comes in response to memoranda written by Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld last week, urging that the US begin to entrench its authority in areas under its control before the war is over.

Pentagon officials told The Observer that the administration is determined to impose the Rumsfeld plan and sees no use for a UN role, describing the international body as 'irrelevant'.

Full story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 09:04 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

$60 billion Rebuild Iraq Plan 'freezes out' UN, favors U.S.

As you read this article, keep in mind this snippet from the PNAC's "Rebuilding America's Defenses" report:

In the Persian Gulf region, the presence of American forces, along with British and French units, has become a semipermanent fact of life. Though the immediate mission of those forces is to enforce the no-fly zones over northern and southern Iraq, they represent the long-term commitment of the United States and its major allies to a region of vital importance. Indeed, the United States has for decades sought to play a more permanent role in Gulf regional security. While the unresolved conflict with Iraq provides the immediate justification, the need for a substantial American force presence in the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein.

-"Rebuilding America's Defenses -- Strategy, Forces, and Resources for a New Century", page 26
Project for the New American Century, Sept. 2000

£60bn to rebuild Iraq

FRASER NELSON AND BRIAN BRADY
Sun 30 Mar 2003

THE United States has drawn up a £60bn blueprint for the post-war reconstruction of Iraq which completely freezes out the United Nations and gives all contracts to American firms, Scotland on Sunday can reveal.

The emergence of the hugely detailed and controversial plan will place enormous strain on the relationship between President George W Bush and Prime Minister Tony Blair, who remains determined that the UN should have a key role in rebuilding Iraq.

Despite that, US firms will this week win a clean sweep of contracts to reconstruct the health, education, transport and political systems of Iraq.

The US State Department scheme will see private companies build a national health service, design a network of airports, and draw up a "politically-neutral" school curriculum, all without the involvement of the UN.

The programme - which will be finalised in the next few days - will cause deep dismay among European ministers, who wanted the award of contracts to be handled by the UN to ensure fairness and avoid the impression of American colonialism.

Full story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 04:10 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

State Dept. Report: Democracy Domino Theory 'Not Credible'

Democracy Domino Theory 'Not Credible'

A State Department report disputes Bush's claim that ousting Hussein will spur reforms in the Mideast, intelligence officials say.

By Greg Miller, Times Staff Writer

WASHINGTON -- A classified State Department report expresses doubt that installing a new regime in Iraq will foster the spread of democracy in the Middle East, a claim President Bush has made in trying to build support for a war, according to intelligence officials familiar with the document.

The report exposes significant divisions within the Bush administration over the so-called democratic domino theory, one of the arguments that underpins the case for invading Iraq.

The report, which has been distributed to a small group of top government officials but not publicly disclosed, says that daunting economic and social problems are likely to undermine basic stability in the region for years, let alone prospects for democratic reform.

Even if some version of democracy took root — an event the report casts as unlikely — anti-American sentiment is so pervasive that elections in the short term could lead to the rise of Islamic-controlled governments hostile to the United States.
Full story...

(archived copy at TruthOut.org)

Posted by Lance Brown at 03:47 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 06, 2003

The Fight Yet to Come

Most of the main names associated with the PNAC turn up in this article about the control and rebuilding of Iraq-- James Woolsey, Donald Rumsfeld, the Likud Party, Ahmad Chalabi, and more. It speaks of a struggle between two main camps about how things will go -- the U.S. way or the internationally-approved way.

The fight yet to come

Another struggle is gripping Washington - the one that will shape the future of Iraq. Bush's inner circle is fighting to gain his ear, and the result of this contest will have an impact even greater than that of the war

Ed Vulliamy in New York and Kamal Ahmed in London
Sunday April 6, 2003
The Observer

At Hillsborough Castle near Belfast tomorrow, President George W Bush will sit down with Tony Blair to discuss phases two and three of the conflict in Iraq. With confidence growing that the military campaign is coming to a conclusion, all eyes are refocusing on the political aftermath. If the coalition of the willing thought the military campaign was difficult to plan for, the opportunity for elephant traps ahead is growing.

Already there is talk of splits and tensions. The US Defence Department, under Donald Rumsfeld, would like an American-dominated interim administration. Colin Powell and his staff at the State Department realise that a broad coalition of international interests and the United Nations will need to be involved. Condoleezza Rice, Bush's National Security Adviser who speaks daily to Tony Blair's foreign policy chief, Sir David Manning, has also promoted a 'UN-endorsed' route allied to ultimate American leadership. Each is playing a game of cat and mouse, a feint here, a jab there, to try to ensure that their scheme comes out on top.

...

Chalabi is backed by friends in the Pentagon to head the formation of a provisional government. But he is suspected by the State Department and CIA, which believe that he has little chance of rallying support in Iraq after nearly half a century in exile. The CIA severed its relationship with Chalabi after the INC was unable to account for millions of dollars in covert US aid.

As a result, Chalabi is currently slated for a position on an advisory council of exiles, with which he has declared himself dissatisfied. However, Pentagon sources tell The Observer that his position is 'under review; he may yet play a very important and senior role'.

A leading role for the INC would dovetail with information from sources telling The Observer that the list of Iraqi exiles to be invited into government is being drawn up by the number three at the Pentagon, Douglas Feith, working directly to his immediate superior and longtime friend, Wolfowitz.

Feith is a pivotal member of the neo-conservative group, having worked with fellow-hawk Richard Perle on a paper for the Israeli Likud Party in 1996, urging a 'clean break' with the peace process.

'It looks like we are on the verge of further alienating allies,' said one State Department official, 'and it looks like we are going to do exactly what we promised we would not - take small groups of exiles with limited influence in Iraq and bring them in as the bulk of a transition government.'

Full article...

Posted by Sherri Fraser at 09:48 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Op-Ed: The Pentagon's (CIA) Man in Iraq

This weblog entry/article from The Nation's Capital Games blog, by David Corn discusses former CIA Director James Woolsey's rising profile in America's new military expansion. (Here's an entry about Woolsey's "World War IV" theory which was mentioned on CNN).

The Pentagon's (CIA) Man in Iraq

04/04/2003 @ 2:50pm

Toward the start of the second Persian Gulf War, I found myself in a room with R. James Woolsey, CIA chief during the first two years of the Clinton administration. A television was turned on, and we both watched a news report on the latest development in the North Korea nuclear drama. How much longer, I asked him, could this administration wait before dealing with North Korea and its efforts to develop nuclear-weapons material? A little while, but not too long, he said. Until after the Iraq war? Yes, Woolsey said, we can take care of things then. (That was when the prevailing assumption was the war in Iraq would take about as long as a Donald Rumsfeld press conference.) And, I wondered, is this a challenge that can be taken care of with, say, a well-planned and contained bombing raid, one that strikes the nuclear facilities in question? "Oh, no, " he said. "This is going to be war." War, full-out war, with a nation that might already have a few nuclear weapons and that does have 600,000 North Korean soldiers stationed 25 miles from Seoul, with 37,000 US troops in between? "Yes, war." He didn't flinch, didn't bat an eye.

Woolsey is something of a prophet of war. And the Pentagon wants him to be part of its team running postwar Iraq.

Full story...

Posted by Sherri Fraser at 07:08 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 05, 2003

WANTED: PNAC NewsHounds

PNAC.info is looking for people who want to help collect and post articles, commentaries, and background info about the PNAC, so we can build as comprehensive a site as possible.

Posting entries is easy -- just e-mail me at lance@freedom2008.com and I'll set you up with a username and password. The more, the merrier! (Inasmuch as trying to help prevent the formation of history's first global empire can be considered "merry".)

Thanks in advance for your help.

Posted by Lance Brown at 04:35 AM | Comments (13) | TrackBack

Submitting PNAC Stories and Links

If you have an article or link to information relating to the Project for the New American Century and its plan for a unipolar world, please do not e-mail it to me. My inbox is an avalanche as it is. :-\

If it's just a one-time thing, you can post the link in the comments section of this or any other entry on the site, and eventually it will get posted as an entry of its own if appropriate.

Or, if you'd like to help build the site as a PNAC NewsHound, then you can e-mail me at lance@freedom2008.com, and I'll set you up with a web-based account so you can post articles on your own.

Thanks for your interest and assistance.

Posted by Lance Brown at 04:34 AM | Comments (18) | TrackBack

Rumsfeld urged Clinton to attack Iraq

Here's an article from Scotland's Sunday Herald about the pre-tremors that eventually turned into the earthquake that is the Iraq War:

Rumsfeld urged Clinton to attack Iraq

Exclusive: By Neil Mackay Home Affairs Editor

DONALD Rumsfeld, the US defence secretary, and his deputy Paul Wolfowitz wrote to President Bill Clinton in 1998 urging war against Iraq and the removal of Saddam Hussein because he is a 'hazard' to 'a significant portion of the world's supply of oil'.

In the letter, Rumsfeld also calls for America to go to war alone, attacks the United Nations and says the US should not be 'crippled by a misguided insistence on unanimity in the UN Security Council'.

...

The letter -- also signed by Zalmay Khalilzad, Bush's special envoy to the Iraqi opposition; ex-director James Woolsey and Robert B Zoelick, the US trade representative -- was written by the signatories on behalf of the Project for the New American Century (PNAC), a right-wing think-tank, to which they all belong.

Other founding members of PNAC include Dick Cheney, the vice-president.

Full story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 03:02 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Op-Ed: Nationalists Hijack Washington

This essay by Ash Pulcifer discusses the damage that excessive nationalism -- which is well-expressed in the idea of a "New American Century" -- can do to international peace and cooperation.

His argument, in short, is that unbridled nationalism results in a self-serving and inconsiderate posture in global politics, and encourages other nations to do the same. It also results in the nations of the world seeing each other as threats, instead of seeing each other as partners and friendly neighbors. Thus, places like North Korea and Iran, for example, are driven to militarize and dig in for an inevitable confrontation, instead of being inclined to cooperate and engage. Another example of the damage of nationalism is the rifts that have grown between the U.S. and France, Germany, and even Canada. Trade between the U.S. and those countries has suffered due to the split over the Iraq War, and trade is historically the single biggest mechanism for avoiding conflict between two nations. If our fortunes are tied to those of other nations, there is a great disincentive to fighting. If our fortunes are isolated and capsulized via spiteful international boycotts, then each of us has nothing to lose from fighting with the other.

Read The Essay

Posted by Lance Brown at 01:01 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 04, 2003

Hints of PNAC on CNN: "World War IV"?

William Schneider on CNN's "American Morning" program today highlighted a talk given by former CIA Director James Woolsey's, about "World War IV" (He counts the Cold War as number III). He says it will be between most of the Middle East and the so-called Western World. Speaking of the undesirable regimes in that area, he said (I paraphrase), "All these countries are going to feel threatened about our formula of democracy creeping in to their area. I say, 'Good. We want them to feel threatened.'" Schneider then placed Woolsey as being closely allied with Rumsfeld, Perle, Wolfowitz, and others, and made the connection that many others have, that 9-11 was seized as an opportunity to carry out their pre-existing goals. He challenged Bush's public assertion that this was not a clash of civilizations, pointing to the enormous global opposition to the U.S. and Britain's Western agression.

Schneider closed by asserting that most Americans don't want to dominate the world, which is primary premise behind the creation of this site. I believe that if most Americans can be made aware that our defense policy leadership apparently intends for us to do just that, they will react with strong opposition.

More links on this talk:
CNN: Ex-CIA director: U.S. faces 'World War IV'
UCLA Daily Bruin: Pro-war event gets mixed reaction

The event was arranged by William Bennett, who is spearheading what seems to be a PNAC sister effort called Americans for Victory Over Terrorism.

Bennett Returns Fire at Pro-War Teach-In
At UCLA forum, conservative thinker answers critics of U.S. military effort in Iraq.

By Stuart Silverstein, L.A. Times Staff Writer

While battles rage in Iraq, prominent conservative thinker William J. Bennett is waging a parallel struggle in this country to win the hearts and minds of the nation's college students.

On Wednesday night, he took his case to UCLA, asking an audience of about 300 students to consider the arguments in favor of the war in Iraq and a broader attack on terrorism.

"Did we have ... sufficient reason and motivation and justification to go into Iraq?" Bennett asked his polite and attentive audience at Ackerman Union. "Absolutely.... It's a dangerous world. It's a particularly dangerous world since 9/11. The threshold for action has been lowered."

Bennett is determined that teach-ins, a concept born during the antiwar protests of the 1960s, not be the exclusive province of liberals and leftists. This, in fact, was the third pro-war teach-in -- the first on the West Coast -- led by the former U.S. drug czar and education secretary on college campuses

Full story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 04:27 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

April 03, 2003

Chronology of World Market Oil Events - 1970-2002

This is an extremely thorough chronicle of all the major events that have affected the world oil market from 1970-2002. It's from the U.S. Department of Energy's web site, and it's super-extensive, detailing events on a month-by-month (and often day-by-day) basis. It has a chart of the price of oil over the 32-year time period, with the 64 most important events marked on the chart. The data behind the chart is available for download as well, and there's even a page for the most recent months' events. It currently goes up to February 28.

This isn't about the PNAC directly, just background info for the bigger picture. U.S. involvement in the Middle East oil trade is a major part of the chronicle.

World Oil Market and Oil Price Chronologies: 1970 - 2002

Posted by Lance Brown at 04:11 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

1958-1991, Iraq: A Classic Case of Divide and Conquer

This article by former Attorney General Ramsey Clark discusses the U.S. government's involvement in Iraq from 1958 until the first Gulf War. It paints a picture of a long-standing effort to gain manageable control over Iraq's oil resources.

1958-1991, Iraq: A Classic Case of Divide and Conquer
By Ramsey Clark, former U.S. Attorney General.

Iraq has been a target of U.S. covert actions since at least 1958, when a popular revolution led by Abdel Kassem overthrew the Iraqi monarchy, which was installed by Britain in 1921. In 1960, the new government helped found the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, to resist Western oil monopolies.1

The CIA plotted Kassem's assassination and U.S. generals in Turkey devised a military plan, called "Canonbone," to invade northern Iraq and seize its oil fields.2 In 1963, Kassem and thousands of supporters were massacred in a CIA-backed coup.

Full story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 03:51 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

4 years before 9/11, plan was set

This article features a useful inset which outlines the main figures in the Bush Administration who have connections to the PNAC and the long-standing plan to invade Iraq.

Invading Iraq not a new idea for Bush clique
4 years before 9/11, plan was set

By WILLIAM BUNCH
bunchw@phillynews.com
Posted on Mon, Jan. 27, 2003

It was 2:40 p.m. on Sept. 11, 2001, and rescue crews were still scouring the ravaged section of the Pentagon that hijacked American Airlines Flight 77 had destroyed just five hours earlier.

On the other side of the still-smoldering Pentagon complex, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld was poring through incoming intelligence reports and jotting down notes. Although most Americans were still shell-shocked, Rumsfeld's thoughts had already turned to a longstanding foe.

Rumsfeld wrote, according to a later CBS News report, that he wanted "best info fast. Judge whether good enough [to] hit S.H. at the same time. Not only UBL" - meaning Osama bin Laden. He added: "Go massive. Sweep it all up. Things related and not."

Full story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 03:43 AM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Richard Perle's connections

This article in the New Yorker discusses Richard Perle, a PNAC member who recently resigned from his post as Chairman of the influential Defense Policy Board, to avoid the appearance of improriety or conflict of interest. He remains on the board, just not as Chairman. The story below details the connections that give that appearance of conflict of interest, and discusses Richard Perle's influence in the direction of U.S. foreign policy.

LUNCH WITH THE CHAIRMAN
by SEYMOUR M. HERSH
Why was Richard Perle meeting with Adnan Khashoggi?
Issue of 2003-03-17
Posted 2003-03-10

Excerpt:

Four members of the Defense Policy Board told me that the board, which met most recently on February 27th and 28th, had not been informed of Perle’s involvement in Trireme. One board member, upon being told of Trireme and Perle’s meeting with Khashoggi, exclaimed, “Oh, get out of here. He’s the chairman! If you had a story about me setting up a company for homeland security, and I’ve put people on the board with whom I’m doing that business, I’d be had”—a reference to Gerald Hillman, who had almost no senior policy or military experience in government before being offered a post on the policy board. “Seems to me this is at the edge of or off the ethical charts. I think it would stink to high heaven.”

Full Story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 03:30 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

CBS News: Plans For Iraq Attack Began On 9/11

This Sept. 2002 story doesn't mention the PNAC, but looks to be describing one link in the chain.

From CBSNews.com:

Plans For Iraq Attack Began On 9/11

(CBS) CBS News has learned that barely five hours after American Airlines Flight 77 plowed into the Pentagon, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld was telling his aides to come up with plans for striking Iraq — even though there was no evidence linking Saddam Hussein to the attacks.

That's according to notes taken by aides who were with Rumsfeld in the National Military Command Center on Sept. 11 – notes that show exactly where the road toward war with Iraq began, reports CBS News National Security Correspondent David Martin.

Full story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 03:13 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

ABC News: The Plan

The news about the PNAC/Iraq War connection is definitely getting out there.

From ABCNews.com:

The Plan
Were Neo-Conservatives’ 1998 Memos a Blueprint for Iraq War?

March 10 — Years before George W. Bush entered the White House, and years before the Sept. 11 attacks set the direction of his presidency, a group of influential neo-conservatives hatched a plan to get Saddam Hussein out of power.

The group, the Project for the New American Century, or PNAC, was founded in 1997. Among its supporters were three Republican former officials who were sitting out the Democratic presidency of Bill Clinton: Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney and Paul Wolfowitz.

Full story...

(That page also features a video of some sort about the issue, but I got an error when trying to play it.)

Posted by Lance Brown at 03:05 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 01, 2003

Activists seek PNAC repudiation from congressman

A group of anti-war activists in Michigan have decided to make the PNAC the centerpiece of their recent actions. This story tells how some activists have been scheduling a series of meetings with their Republican congressman, trying to get him to repudiate the PNAC's "Rebuilding America's Defenses" plan. This is a new development in the methods of the anti-war movement.

MLive.com: Protesters urge Upton to repudiate document

(The site requires minor demographic info to view the article, but it's nothing personal, and it's worth it.)

Posted by Lance Brown at 11:02 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Op-Ed: Blood Money

This commentary/analysis piece by William Rivers Pitt digs into the profit plan that lies behind the PNAC and the Bush administration's defense plan. It's an expanded follow-up to his earlier commentary.

TruthOut.org: Blood Money

When reading it, keep in mind this quote from President Dwight D. Eisenhower, from his famous "military-industrial complex" speech over 40 years ago:

This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence -- economic, political, even spiritual -- is felt in every city, every State house, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society.

In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the militaryindustrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.

We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.

Posted by Lance Brown at 08:35 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Op-Ed: Of Gods and Mortals and Empire

This commentary by best-selling author William Rivers Pitt starts out talking about the anti-war protestors, but after a few paragraphs he starts talking about the PNAC, and provides some useful perspective and analysis of the PNAC's grand plan for an "American Century".

TruthOut.org: Of Gods and Mortals and Empire

Excerpt:

Why is this important? After all, wacky think tanks are a cottage industry in Washington, DC. They are a dime a dozen. In what way does PNAC stand above the other groups that would set American foreign policy if they could?

Two events brought PNAC into the mainstream of American government: the disputed election of George W. Bush, and the attacks of September 11th. When Bush assumed the Presidency, the men who created and nurtured the imperial dreams of PNAC became the men who run the Pentagon, the Defense Department and the White House. When the Towers came down, these men saw, at long last, their chance to turn their White Papers into substantive policy.

Vice President Dick Cheney is a founding member of PNAC, along with Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Defense Policy Board chairman Richard Perle. Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz is the ideological father of the group. Bruce Jackson, a PNAC director, served as a Pentagon official for Ronald Reagan before leaving government service to take a leading position with the weapons manufacturer Lockheed Martin.

PNAC is staffed by men who previously served with groups like Friends of the Democratic Center in Central America, which supported America's bloody gamesmanship in Nicaragua and El Salvador, and with groups like The Committee for the Present Danger, which spent years advocating that a nuclear war with the Soviet Union was "winnable."

Full story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 07:51 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

The Thirty-Year Itch

This article in Mother Jones provides a good answer to claims that "it's not about the oil". It's an in-depth look at how it's been about the oil since the energy crisis in the 70's. Though I don't think the article directly references the PNAC, it's talking about the same people. It's a deeper look at one piece of the PNAC's global puzzle.

Mother Jones: The Thirty-Year Itch

Excerpt:

"Controlling Iraq is about oil as power, rather than oil as fuel," says Michael Klare, professor of peace and world security studies at Hampshire College and author of Resource Wars. "Control over the Persian Gulf translates into control over Europe, Japan, and China. It's having our hand on the spigot."

Full story...

Also check out their interactive map, which displays the oil reserves in the Middle East, as well as U.S. base deployments there.

Mother Jones: Oil and Arms -- An In-Depth Look

Posted by Lance Brown at 06:12 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

The president's real goal in Iraq

(NOTE: The original copy of this article has been moved to a pay archive. The links here have been changed to refer to a free archived version at a different location.)

Jay Bookman's piece in the Atlanta-Journal Constitution followed the Sunday Herald story by a couple of months. Bookman's analysis is extremely valuable in understanding the PNAC document because Bookman begins to connect the dots, points out the prominence of PNAC members in the Bush administration and shows how closely the administration has followed the PNAC's plan.

Atlanta Journal-Constitution: The president's real goal in Iraq

Excerpt:

This war, should it come, is intended to mark the official emergence of the United States as a full-fledged global empire, seizing sole responsibility and authority as planetary policeman. It would be the culmination of a plan 10 years or more in the making, carried out by those who believe the United States must seize the opportunity for global domination, even if it means becoming the "American imperialists" that our enemies always claimed we were.

Full story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 05:53 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Bush planned Iraq 'regime change' before becoming President

This article on SundayHerald.com was one of the first (or possibly the very first) place to break the story about the PNAC factor in regard to the war in Iraq.

SundayHerald.com: Bush planned Iraq 'regime change' before becoming President

Here's an excerpt:

A SECRET blueprint for US global domination reveals that President Bush and his cabinet were planning a premeditated attack on Iraq to secure 'regime change' even before he took power in January 2001.

The blueprint, uncovered by the Sunday Herald, for the creation of a 'global Pax Americana' was drawn up for Dick Cheney (now vice- president), Donald Rumsfeld (defence secretary), Paul Wolfowitz (Rumsfeld's deputy), George W Bush's younger brother Jeb and Lewis Libby (Cheney's chief of staff). The document, entitled Rebuilding America's Defences: Strategies, Forces And Resources For A New Century, was written in September 2000 by the neo-conservative think-tank Project for the New American Century (PNAC).

The plan shows Bush's cabinet intended to take military control of the Gulf region whether or not Saddam Hussein was in power. It says: 'The United States has for decades sought to play a more permanent role in Gulf regional security. While the unresolved conflict with Iraq provides the immediate justification, the need for a substantial American force presence in the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein.'

Full story...

Posted by Lance Brown at 05:45 PM | Comments (9) | TrackBack

This war is brought to you by...

Here's a detailed article from Asia Times about the Project for the New American Century, the people and plans behind it, and how it all relates to the current war in Iraq.

AsiaTimes: This war is brought to you by...

Posted by Lance Brown at 05:32 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Welcome to PNAC.Info

Welcome to PNAC.Info - an effort to investigate, analyze, and expose the Project for the New American Century*, and its plan for a "unipolar" world.

In the coming days we will be compiling information and analysis geared toward exposing the big-picture plan behind the current war in Iraq, and other foreign policy decisions of the current administration.

If you have any comments, links, or ideas, please feel free to post a comment below this message here.

Thank you for your visit.

Be well, be free,

Lance M. Brown

*often referred to as the "Project for a New American Century"

Posted by Lance Brown at 03:41 AM | Comments (26) | TrackBack
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