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Tracking militarists’ efforts to influence U.S. foreign policy

Congress and Iran; Intel Déjà Vu; Hawking Iran in Europe; JPod and Commentary

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FEATURED ARTICLE

Congress and Iran: The New Iraq?
By John Isaacs

If U.S. warplanes fly toward Iran next year, October 2007 may be remembered as the month that the Bush administration began its final push to prepare the public for a new Mideast intervention. Although largely driven by Vice President Dick Cheney and associates in the Bush administration, the push toward military action has been abetted by cheerleaders in Congress, as well as by a heavy dose of rhetoric from the regular suspects in the neoconservative and hardline advocacy communities. Read full story.

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White House Sharpens Its Words
By Jim Lobe

The vice president gives a hostile assessment of Iran and the president links World War III to a nuclear Iran, while the secretary of defense tries to temper the two with a more restrained and robust interpretation of the Iranian threat. Long before it has figured out what to do with Iraq, the White House seems intent on more military action in the Middle East. Read full story.

SPECIAL PROFILE SECTION: Hawking Iran in Europe

Réalité EU
This Europe-based outfit echoes the rhetoric of many pro-Israel hardliners in the United States in its efforts to educate European leaders about supposed threats to the continent from the Middle East.

The Henry Jackson Society
Honoring the controversial hawkish senator from Washington, the British-based Henry Jackson Society serves as the neoconservative analogue in the UK, offering a platform for the likes of Richard Perle to push regime change in Iran and other global hotspots.

The Transatlantic Institute
This Brussels-based outfit, founded by the American Jewish Committee, often serves as a host for U.S. writers and pundits who helped bring about the Iraq War and now aim to extend it to Iran.

SPECIAL PROFILE SECTION: The Intel Déjà Vu

Team B Strategic Objectives Panel
Though the gaming of intelligence has been on full display during the George W. Bush presidency, the phenomenon has a Cold War forerunner in Team B.

Rumsfeld Missile Commission
As the history of this rightist-driven congressional commission from the late 1990s reveals, Iran is just the latest in a long line of trumped up excuses for deploying controversial and costly missile defense systems.

Rumsfeld Space Commission
Supported by hardline and neoconservative-led groups like the Center for Security Policy and the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs, this congressionally mandated study warned of a “Space Pearl Harbor.” And then 9/11 happened.

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Whose EFPs?
By Gareth Porter

The argument that Iran alone is behind deadly explosives used against U.S. troops in Iraq is the latest in a long line of skewed intel conclusions offered by the Bush administration to justify the "war on terror." Read full story.

ALSO NEW ON RIGHT WEB

Right Web Profile: John Podhoretz
Many conservatives are unhappy that the neocon scion, known more for head-scratching pop culture columns than for intellectual prowess, has been named as future editor of Commentary magazine.

Right Web Profile: Sen. Joe Lieberman
One of the Senate’s most ardent hardliners on Iran and a consistent backer of a neoconservative foreign policy agenda, Lieberman has repeatedly called for sending U.S. troops into Iran to attack purported terrorist training sites.

Right Web Profile: Foundation for Defense of Democracies
A key member of the neoconservative advocacy club, the FDD has proved an effective promoter of the idea that Islamic extremism is the main threat to Mideast peace and Western civilization.

Forgetting the Carrot
By Ali Gharib

The United States says it’s open to diplomacy with Iran, but new U.S. sanctions seem to suggest otherwise. Read full article.

Islamofascist What?
By Khody Akhavi and Ali Gharib

David Horowitz, Daniel Pipes, and friends staged a pre-Halloween fete last week aimed at deriding leftist "lynch mobs" and "Islamo-Nazis" that bore all the hallmarks of an extremist rally. Read full article.

Bracing the Brass on Iran
By Gareth Porter

Some politicians appear eager for U.S. military action against Iran, but their military counterparts are more cautious, a divide reflected in the changing military options tabled by the administration. Read full article.

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Featured Profiles

Clare Lopez is a former CIA officer and rightwing activist who has argued that the Muslim Brotherhood and a shadowy “Iran Lobby” are working to shape Obama administration policy.


Michael Ledeen, a “Freedom Scholar” at the neoconservative Foundation for Defense of Democracies, has long been obsessed with getting the U.S. to force regime change in Tehran.


Michael Flynn is a former Trump administration National Security Advisor who was forced to step down only weeks on the job because of his controversial contacts with Russian officials before Trump took office.


The daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, Liz Cheney has emerged as the most visible advocate of hardline security policies in the Cheney family.


Bret Stephens is a columnist for the New York Times who previously worked at the Wall Street Journal and the neoconservative flagship magazine Commentary.


Joe Lieberman, the neoconservative Democrat from Connecticut who retired from the Senate in 2013, co-chairs a foreign policy project at the American Enterprise Institute.


Former attorney general Edwin Meese, regarded as one of President Ronald Reagan’s closest advisers despite persistent allegations of influence peddling and bribery during his tenure, has been a consummate campaigner on behalf of rightist U.S. foreign and domestic policies. He currently serves as a distinguished visiting fellow at the conservative Hoover Institution.


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From the Wires

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The President went to the region as a deal maker and a salesman for American weapon manufacturing. He talked about Islam, terrorism, Iran, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict without the benefit of expert advice in any of these areas. After great showmanship in Riyadh, Jerusalem, and Bethlehem, he and his family left the region without much to show for or to benefit the people of that war-torn region.


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Although the Comey memo scandal may well turn out to be what brings Trump down, this breach of trust may have had more lasting effect than any of Trump’s other numerous misadventures. It was an unprecedented betrayal of Israel’s confidence. Ironically, Trump has now done what even Barack Obama’s biggest detractors never accused him of: seriously compromised Israel’s security relationship with the United States.


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Congress and the public acquiesce in another military intervention or a sharp escalation of one of the U.S. wars already under way, perhaps it’s time to finally consider the true costs of war, American-style — in lives lost, dollars spent, and opportunities squandered. It’s a reasonable bet that never in history has a society spent more on war and gotten less bang for its copious bucks.


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Trump’s reorganization of the foreign policy bureaucracy is an ideologically driven agenda for undermining the power and effectiveness of government institutions that could lead to the State Department’s destruction.


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Spurred by anti-internationalist sentiment among conservative Republicans in Congress and the Trump administration, the US is headed for a new confrontation with the UN over who decides how much the US should pay for peacekeeping.


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Decent developments in the Trump administration indicate that the neoconservatives, at one point on the margins of Washington’s new power alignments, are now on the ascendent?


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As the end of Donald Trump’s first 100 days as president approaches, it seems that his version of an “America-first” foreign policy is in effect a military-first policy aimed at achieving global hegemony, which means it’s a potential doomsday machine.


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