Right Web

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

An Immigration-Terrorism Link?; Conrad Black on Trial; and Fukuyama’s Revelation

AN IMMIGRATION-TERORRISM LINK?

The website of Immigration Customs and Enforcement (ICE), a wing of the Department of Homeland Security that overseas implementation of many U.S. migration policies, sets the tone: " The agency was created after 9/11, by combining the law enforcement arms of the former Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) and the former U.S. Customs Service, to more effectively enforce our immigration and customs laws and to protect the United States against terrorist attacks. ICE does this by targeting illegal immigrants: the people, money, and materials that support terrorism and other criminal activities."

In one fell swoop, ICE says that "targeting illegal immigrants" is all about protecting America from terrorists—illegal immigrants, after all, says ICE, are "the people" who "support terrorism." It is a breathtaking assertion. But do undocumented immigrants have anything to do with terrorism? Most migration experts say no, arguing that trying to enter the country illegally is the least likely avenue that a terrorist would take, and that there is little or no evidence that terrorists have done so. Yet this argument seems to have little sway in the Bush administration or on Capitol Hill, where a growing number of congressional figures have used the war on terror as a platform from which to spout anti-immigrant rhetoric.

This issue of Right Web News features an analysis and profiles of some of the key congressional proponents of the immigration-terrorism connection, including the congressional Immigration Reform Caucus, a group that includes some 100 rightist House members, three of whom have set their sights on winning the 2008 Republican presidential nomination.

Pushing the Anti-Immigration Agenda Further Right
By Tom Barry | March 13, 2007

Connecting immigration restrictionism to the "global war on terror" and the "clash of civilizations," Republican presidential hopeful Rep. Tom Tancredo is helping to forge a new unity among social conservatives on a far-right agenda, even as other presidential candidates endeavor to steer clear of the immigration debate . Read full story.

Right Web Profile: Immigration Reform Caucus
Using the war on terror to push for severely strict immigration policies, the congressional Immigration Reform Caucus has grown into a formidable force on Capitol Hill, one that includes nearly 100 House members.

Right Web Profile: Tom Tancredo
The Republican rep has rallied a populist right-wing revolt that bands together anti-immigration activists, the religious right, cultural supremacists, and the militia movement into a new anti-immigration wing of the Republican Party.

ALSO NEW ON RIGHT WEB

Right Web Profile: Conrad Black
A onetime powerful media mogul and favorite of the Richard Perle crowd, Black’s trial on racketeering and other federal charges began this week in Chicago.

Right Web Profile: Francis Fukuyama
One of the most well-known U.S. academics and an erstwhile neocon, Francis Fukuyama turned his back on neoconservatism, arguing that it was "strangely disconnected from reality." Now he calls for a more aggressive diplomatic strategy in global hotspots like the Middle East than the one gaining steam of late in the offices of Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

A Real Realist Takeover?
By Jim Lobe | March 12, 2007

The realists seem to have seized the initiative in directing U.S. foreign policy, but "cowboy diplomacy" dies hard, especially in the Middle East. Read full story.

LETTERS

RE: Leon Hadar, "Is Washington Being Sidelined on the Middle East," Right Web, February 20, 2007

Leon Hadar’s article outlines a number of important and interesting political dynamics, such as the growing Saudi role in Middle East issues and the implications of this for the United States. However, I think it is important to also consider Bush administration policy from a personal/psychological perspective. The persistent U.S. expressions of concern about not appearing weak, not "rewarding" objectionable conduct, and insisting that adversaries surrender their positions before negotiations, often seem to constitute the bullying behavior of fundamentally insecure egos.

The recent agreement to talk with Syria and Iran has been greeted as a welcome concession to rationality, but it’s accompanied by an insistence that the United States will not talk about anything but stability in Iraq. Reasonable people tend to see that as a front and to believe the talks must inevitably open the door on broader issues. But it’s just as likely that the brittle egos involved are quite serious, and may even plan to use the talks as cover for further aggression: the United States could appear to engage in negotiations the breakdown of which would be used to justify military action that is already planned. While the United States has been obsessed with hegemony for decades, and perhaps throughout much of its history, the apparently psychopathic personalities in charge of the Bush administration lend an additional element of irrationality that is downright scary, and that it may be important to take into account in analyzing and attempting to predict U.S. actions.

—Robert Roth

RE: Suggested Profiles

First, thanks for all of the well-researched information you have up on your site. I have used it frequently. I wonder, however, why you do not have O.R. Anderson, Maurice Strong, or others who have been behind efforts to increase oil-company influence in the United Nations. Also, many neoconservative political operatives are not profiled on your site, including John Fund, Matt Drudge, Ann Coulter, or David Horowitz, although you have some of the people in their networks, such as Michael Novak. Fund was placed at the Wall Street Journal in the early 1980s by Novak. He identified the potential that Drudge had and most probably brought Horowitz onboard in the 1990s. You might look into the work of Howie Rich, too. That connects to Koch Industries (also something to be covered) through the Cato Institute and Ed Crane.

Great work on the site. Thanks.

—Melinda Pillsbury-Foster

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Featured Profiles

Bernard Lewis was a renowned historian of Islam and the Middle East who stirred controversy with his often chauvinistic attitude towards the Muslim world and his associations with high-profile neoconservatives and foreign policy hawks.


John Bolton, the controversial former U.S. ambassador to the UN and dyed-in the-wool foreign policy hawk, is President Trump’s National Security Adviser McMaster, reflecting a sharp move to the hawkish extreme by the administration.


Michael Joyce, who passed away in 2006, was once described by neoconservative guru Irving Kristol as the “godfather of modern philanthropy.”


Mike Pompeo, the Trump administration’s second secretary of state, is a long time foreign policy hawk and has led the public charge for an aggressive policy toward Iran.


Max Boot, neoconservative military historian at the Council on Foreign Relations, on Trump and Russia: “At every turn Trump is undercutting the ‘get tough on Russia’ message because he just can’t help himself, he just loves Putin too much.”


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.


Since taking office Donald Trump has revealed an erratic and extremely hawkish approach to U.S. foreign affairs, which has been marked by controversial actions like dropping out of the Iran nuclear agreement that have raised tensions across much of the world and threatened relations with key allies.


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From the Wires

Soon after a Saudi-led coalition strike on a bus killed 40 children on August 9, a CENTCOM spokesperson stated to Vox, “We may never know if the munition [used] was one that the U.S. sold to them.”


The West has dominated the post-war narrative with its doctrine of liberal values, arguing that not only were they right in themselves but that economic success itself depended on their application. Two developments have challenged those claims. The first was the West’s own betrayal of its principles: on too many occasions the self interest of the powerful, and disdain for the victims of collateral damage, has showed through. The second dates from more recently: the growth of Chinese capitalism owes nothing to a democratic system of government, let alone liberal values.


Falsely demonizing all Muslims, their beliefs, and their institutions is exactly the wrong way to make Americans safer, because the more we scare ourselves with imaginary enemies, the harder it will be to find and protect ourselves from real ones.


Division in the ranks of the conservative movement is a critical sign that a war with Iran isn’t inevitable.


Donald Trump stole the headlines, but the declaration from the recent NATO summit suggests the odds of an unnecessary conflict are rising. Instead of inviting a dialogue, the document boasts that the Alliance has “suspended all practical civilian and military cooperation between NATO and Russia.” The fact is, NATO was a child of the Cold War, when the West believed that the Soviets were a threat. But Russia today is not the Soviet Union, and there’s no way Moscow would be stupid enough to attack a superior military force.


War with Iran may not be imminent, but neither was war with Iraq in late 2001.


Donald Trump was one of the many bets the Russians routinely place, recognizing that while most such bets will never pay off a few will, often in unpredictable ways. Trump’s actions since taking office provide the strongest evidence that this one bet is paying off handsomely for the Russians. Putin could hardly have made the script for Trump’s conduct at the recent NATO meeting any more to his liking—and any better designed to foment division and distrust within the Western alliance—than the way Trump actually behaved.


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