This Week on the Right | Tom Barry
What’s New | U.S. Committee on NATO, Project on Transitional Democracies, New Atlantic Initiative, Daniel Pipes,Middle East Forum
Letters and Feedback | Africa, Shameful
By Tom Barry
The cold war is long over, but with the support of U.S. supremacists in both parties NATO lives on as America’s global cop.
Russia is concerned that there is another cold war brewing, as NATO plans to station fighter planes in the Baltic republics. In the Duma, Russian deputies expressed concern last week that U.S. F-16s will be patrolling the Russian border and permanently stationed just 160 kilometers from St. Petersburg.
Seven more nations joined NATO last week, three more former Soviet bloc nations have their applications pending. Although the Bush administration has set an overall course in foreign and military policy of treaty-breaking and unilateralism, it remains a strong proponent of NATO expansion.
But while the Russians are grimacing, the neoconservatives and U.S. military contractors are smiling. The expanded NATO represents an expanded market for Lockheed and other military contractors, and the new NATO countries are likely members of future “coalitions of the willing” assembled by the U.S. government. Bruce Jackson, who founded the U.S. Committee on NATO and sits on the board of directors of the Project for the New American Century, is widely credited for having spearheaded the two recent expansions of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
A feature article in EuroMoney last year offered an illuminating portrait of Jackson, whose father, William Harding Jackson was deputy director of the CIA in the 1950s and who himself worked in Defense Department intelligence under Richard Perle in the 1980s. According to EuroMoney’s reporter Julian Evans:
“Speaking to Jackson gives one a fascinating insight into the neoconservative mentality–indeed, he might be described as Europe’s neoconservative, bringing regime change (or at least reform) wherever he goes. It is, whatever you think of it, a revolutionary mentality, and one driven by a prodigious energy. He says Europe is now in a ‘revolutionary period,’ as significant a period since the treaty of Westphalia in 1648 and adds: ‘Where Europe finds itself in five years will be where Europe stands for the next 50 years.’ Like many neoconservatives inspired by Ronald Reagan’s strong moral rhetoric, morality is very much at the centre of Jackson’s vision. He quotes Pope John Paul II to declare that the revolutions of 1989 were not political but moral. He’s also a highly committed supporter of Israel, like most neoconservatives, and an opponent of anti-semitism wherever he sees it or thinks he sees it.
“And like others in Bush’s government, there is an almost millenarian tinge to some of his language–he says Europe is now entering its ‘third and final phase.’ He is nothing if not grand in his thinking. He says Europe must incorporate its neighbors to the east because ‘a greater Europe sets the stage for the two great endeavors of 21st-century democracy–the democratization and integration of Russia, and the democratization and liberalization of the Greater Middle East’.”
Jackson, a former investment banker and until 2002 vice president for strategy and planning at Lockheed, must be heartened by the new weapons deals being signed by the new NATO members. EuroMoney described Poland’s March 2003 acquisition of 48 F-16s as “the biggest debt financing of the year–a $5.5 billion off-balance-sheet deal arranged by JPMorgan and guaranteed by the U.S. government.”
EuroMoney spoke to a banker involved in the syndication of the financing. "We understood what the deal was," he said. "The U.S. government finances the deal at good rates. In return, Poland supports the U.S. in Iraq."
Euromoney rhetorically asked: “Is he [Jackson] the military-industrial complex conspiracy figure par excellence?”
(Tom Barry is Policy Director of the Interhemispheric Resource Center (IRC), online at: www.irc-online.org.)
For more on the neocons and NATO, see:
Julian Evans, “The Man Who Brought NATO East,” EuroMoney, December 2003
Tom Barry, “Long Live NATO,” Right Web Analysis, IRC, April 1, 2004
“Bruce Jackson,” Right Web Profile, IRC, March 2004
Neocon’s NATO Lobby. Among first board members of the U.S. Committee on NATO were Paul Wolfowitz, Richard Perle, and Stephen Hadley. Hadley, who serves in the Bush administration as deputy national security adviser to Condoleezza Rice, was a partner in the Shea & Gardner law firm, whose clients included Boeing and Lockheed Martin. More recent board members include Randy Scheunemann, Julie Finley, and Gary Schmitt, who are also tangled with three other organizations: the Project on Transitional Democracies, the Committee for the Liberation of Iraq, and the Project for the New American Century. Randy Scheunemann, a board member of the Project for the New American Century, was also another link to Lockheed Martin, since he was president of Orion Strategies, whose clients include the largest defense contractor in the United States.
Right Web Profile: U.S. Committee on NATO
Transitioning to the U.S. Orbit. The Project on Transitional Democracies is a spin-off of the U.S. Committee on NATO, which closed its doors in late 2003. However, the offices of the NATO committee, which was founded in 1996 by Bruce Jackson, now serve as the offices of the Project on Transitional Democracies. All three principals of the Project on Transitional Democracies have worked for the Republican Party, and Jackson and Scheunemann have close ties with major military contractors, notably Lockheed Martin.
Right Web Profile: Project on Transitional Democracies
Atlanticism from American Enterprise Institute. Henry Kissinger is the chairman of an international advisory board of the New Atlantic Initiative, which is heavily weighted with neoconservatives, neoliberal ideologues, and European rightists. Bruce Jackson of the Project for Transitional Democracies and the now-defunct U.S. Committee on NATO was a founding member of the New Atlantic Initiative.
Right Web Profile: New Atlantic Initiative
What’s Academic Freedom Got to Do with It? A band of neoconservative pundits with close ties to Israel have mounted a campaign against American scholars who study the Middle East. Martin Kramer, an Israeli-American and former director of the Dayan Center for Middle East Studies at Tel-Aviv University, has led the way in blaming these scholars for failing to warn the American public about the dangers of radical Islam, claiming they bear some of the responsibility for what befell us on September 11. In 2003, proponents of this position took their complaints to Congress. The Senate is expected to review them soon, as it discusses the Higher Education Reauthorization bill. Joel Beinen examines the campaign by groups such as the Middle East Forum to control Middle East Studies.
Right Web Analysis: Thought Control for Middle East Studies by Joel Beinen
One Treaty the Bush Administration Supports. At a time when it appears that the U.S. is becoming increasingly isolated, the Bush administration is exercising strong leadership over what the president describes as the “most successful military alliance in history.” The Bush administration has lashed out at European critics of its neo-imperial policies and dismissed the dissident Western European nations as representatives of the “old Europe,” but it rests secure in the knowledge that U.S. military leadership and America’s military dominance are central to NATO and that NATO is the centerpiece of transatlantic relations. Given that most European nations lack strong militaries of their own and that EU still lacks a unified security infrastructure, the ever-expanding NATO operating under U.S. direction will likely remain an effective instrument of U.S. hegemony, not only in North Atlantic but also from the Gulf of Finland to the Black Sea, and from the Balkans to the Persian Gulf.
Right Web Analysis: Long Live NATO by Tom Barry
(Please send your comments to email@example.com )
(Letter sent to the IRC’s Progressive Response ezine in response to Right Web analysis.)
Tom Barry’s piece titled "One Year After the Invasion: Bagdad and Beyond" made an interesting read. But he chose to ignore the peril which the neocon global dream of empire poses to African countries. It is no secret that part of the global strategy of the Bush administration is a gradual reduction of American dependence on Arab oil, and an increasing dependence on the Gulf of Guinea. Already U.S. is making the same mistake it made in Iran under the Shah, by assisting the Nigerian government in an arms build-up, as well as positioning it as the policeman of the subregion.
As this policy continues to unfold, the hidden danger is that it may also lead to a transfer of the Arab terrorism focus from the Middle East to the Gulf of Guinea region.
– Uchegbu Karl Chinedu
Chinedu is a Military Affairs Analyst with the African Institute for Strategic Studies, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria.
Barry responds: Mr. Chinedu points out some of the problems of a misdirected U.S. foreign policy in Africa, which certainly deserve exposure. However, I believe it a mistake to identify these as the offshoots of a policy agenda that is specifically of neoconservative origin.
This is a shameful site that attempts to shame people whose ideas you disagree with. If you disagree with people then find a way of arguing with them on those ideas, but this is ugly. Talk about McCarthyism.
– “Another Right Wing Bigot”
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