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

China, the new Mideast power; Profiles on Kristol, Abdelnour, Gaffney, AIPAC, and more.

FEATURED ARTICLE China and America Jostle in the Middle EastBy Richard Javad Heydarian China is rapidly expanding its influence in the Middle East. Sidelined during the Cold War, Beijing now has both the economic wherewithal and the military muscle to be a force to reckon with in the region. The country is busy deepening its…

FEATURED ARTICLE

China and America Jostle in the Middle East
By Richard Javad Heydarian

China is rapidly expanding its influence in the Middle East. Sidelined during the Cold War, Beijing now has both the economic wherewithal and the military muscle to be a force to reckon with in the region. The country is busy deepening its ties with regional powers, including many of America’s Arab allies as well as its regional foes, and challenging U.S.-Israeli dominance. What impact could this have on efforts to forge Middle East peace? And could the region become a battleground for a 21st century conflict between a rising China and a stagnant United States? Read full article.

 

FEATURED PROFILES

Ziad Abdelnour

A Lebanese-American investment banker closely tied to militarist advocacy groups, Abdelnour wants the United States or Israel to “annihilate” Hezbollah.

William Kristol

The Weekly Standard editor and Fox News pundit, Kristol has been busy since the election of Barack Obama supporting a string of new pressure groups aimed at promoting the same neoconservative agenda that helped shaped George W. Bush’s “war on terror.”

American Israeli Public Affairs Committee

AIPAC, “America’s pro-Israel lobby,” has been a major backer of sanctions legislation that some observers argue will hurt the Obama administration’s attempts to curtail Tehran’s nuclear ambitions.

Frank Gaffney

Gaffney thinks that the Obama administration’s new logo for the Missile Defense Agency, which features a crescent-like shape, fits a “worrying pattern of official U.S. submission to Islam and the theo-political-legal program the latter’s authorities call Shariah.”

U.S. Committee for a Free Lebanon

Since the election of President Obama, this neocon-aligned advocacy group has endeavored to paint itself as a centrist organization, “just the ultimate lobbyists and powerbrokers for a Free and Democratic Lebanon.”

Patrick Clawson

In a recent paper for the “pro-Israel” WINEP, Clawson argues for cautious measures in approaching Iranian factions about that country’s nuclear program.

 

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IRAN: U.S. Sanctions versus UN Sanctions

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Failed Bomb Plot Tests U.S.-Pakistan Ties

The failed Times Square bombing attempt has highlighted the challenges facing the United States in trying to pressure Pakistan on anti-terror efforts.

The Israeli Exception 

North Korea and Israel have a lot in common, but partly as a result of U.S. policy toward them, one country is an official rogue while the other only plays one on Arab TV.

Whither the Proximity Talks? 

U.S.-backed proximity talks between the Israelis and Palestinians are scheduled to begin, just as a growing alignment of international sympathy for the Palestinian perspective of the conflict has started to emerge.

Iran Sanctions Push 

As midterm elections approach, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are eager to demonstrate their strong support for Israel, in part by arguing for “crippling” sanctions against Tehran.

 

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Featured Profiles

The millionaire pastor of the Cornerstone Church in Texas, John Hagee argues that U.S. support for Israel will play a “a pivotal role in the second coming” of Jesus. He has also risen to new prominence during the Trump administration.


Michael Gerson, an evangelical Christian who served as a chief aide and speechwriter in the George W. Bush White House, is a conservative columnist for the Washington Post and one of Donald Trump’s harshest critics on the right, calling him an “unhinged president.”


Robert Kagan, a cofounder of the Project for the New American Century, is a neoconservative policy pundit and historian based at the Brookings Institution.


Mira Ricardel, former weapons marketer for Boeing, is the deputy national security adviser under John Bolton. She is a well-known foreign policy hawk who has served in key positions in the administration of George W. Bush and, earlier, in the office of former Senator Robert Dole (R-KS).


Fred Fleitz left his role as chief of staff at the National Security Council under John Bolton to succeed notorious Islamophobe Frank Gaffney as president and CEO of the Center for Security Policy.


Brian Hook is the director of policy planning and senior policy advisor to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and is the head of the Iran Action Group.


Haim Saban is a media mogul and major donor to the Democratic Party known for his hardline stance on Israel and opposition to the Iran nuclear deal.


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