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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

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

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.


Nikki Haley, Donald Trump’s first U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, is known for her lock-step support for Israel and is widely considered to be a future presidential candidate.


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.


Josh Rogin is a journalist known for his support for neoconservative policies and views.


Laurence Silberman, a senior justice on the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, was a mentor to controversial Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh and has been a vocal supporter of right-wing foreign and domestic agendas, including the campaign to support the invasion of Iraq.


The People’s Mujahedin of Iran, or MEK, advocates regime change in Iran and has strong connections with a wide range of top political figures in the U.S.


Eli Lake is a columnist for Bloomberg View who has a lengthy record of advocating for aggressive U.S. foreign policies towards the Middle East.


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From the Wires

Jobs should not be an excuse to arm a murderous regime that not only appears to be behind the assassination of a U.S. resident and respected commentator but is also responsible for thousands of civilian casualties in Yemen—the majority killed with U.S-supplied bombs, combat aircraft, and tactical assistance.


The contradictions in Donald Trump’s foreign policy create opportunities for both rivals and long-standing (if irritated) US allies to challenge American influence. But Trump’s immediate priority is political survival, and his actions in the international arena are of little concern to his domestic supporters.


While the notion that criticism of Israel is anti-Semitic is decades old, it has been bolstered in recent years, by the campaign to add to the definition of anti-Semitism any criticism that singles Israel out and doesn’t apply the same standard to other countries. The bottom line is that this entire effort is designed not to combat anti-Semitism but to silence criticism. 


Short-term thinking, expedience, and a lack of strategic caution has led Washington to train, fund, and support group after group that have turned their guns on American soldiers and civilians.


Trump is not the problem. Think of him instead as a summons to address the real problem, which in a nation ostensibly of, by, and for the people is the collective responsibility of the people themselves. For Americans to shirk that responsibility further will almost surely pave the way for more Trumps — or someone worse — to come.


The United Nations has once again turn into a battleground between the United States and Iran, which are experiencing one of the darkest moments in their bilateral relations.


In many ways, Donald Trump’s bellicosity, his militarism, his hectoring cant about American exceptionalism and national greatness, his bullying of allies—all of it makes him not an opponent of neoconservatism but its apotheosis. Trump is a logical culmination of the Bush era as consolidated by Obama.


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