Right Web

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

Mideast Hegemony Blowback; the “Theocons”; and Santorum is Back

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FEATURED ARTICLES

Is Washington Being Sidelined in the Mideast?
By Leon Hadar | February 20, 2007

When U.S. officials warn of the chaos that would follow a U.S. withdrawal from Iraq, they are actually expressing their anxiety over their real nightmare scenario—a Middle East in which the United States is marginalized to a position of little power. But they seem to have found a solution: Attacking Iran. Read full story.

America’s Crusaders
By Tom Barry | February 23, 2007

A fervent blend of ideology and faith is spurring various factions of the American right to champion an imperial foreign policy that envisions the United States forever at war. Read full story.

NEW RIGHT WEB PROFILES—”THE THEOCONS”

Michael Novak
Novak, a so-called theocon who champions the idea that unrestrained capitalism aids social justice, has been a vocal proponent of the Iraq War and a critic of U.S. editors, whom he accuses of spreading enemy propaganda.

Richard John Neuhaus
The former activist pastor, who has the ear of the president, argues for a new containment strategy to deter radical Islam.

George Weigel
A senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center and an early neocon trailblazer, Weigel argues that some Pentagon planners reflect Christian just-war principles better than U.S. bishops.

Institute on Religion and Democracy
One of a number of so-called Christian Reconstructionist groups, the neocon-aligned IRD fights the culture wars at home while supporting U.S. wars abroad.

Institute on Religion and Public Life
Established in 1989 by hardline “theocon” Richard Neuhaus, the IRPL bridges the divide between the neoconservatives and the Christian Right. It also publishes the religious journal First Things.

Ethics and Public Policy Center
Part of a web of religious-oriented policy institutes supporting neoconservative social and foreign policies, the EPPC’s newest program aims to warn the public of America’s growing list of enemies, with one of America’s leading far-right conservatives at the helm.

Rick Santorum
Santorum, a former Republican senator from Pennsylvania and a champion of right-wing social policies while in office, is the latest addition to the Ethics and Pubic Policy Center’s slate of conservative scholars and fellows, heading the center’s newly created “America’s Enemies” program.

SEE ALSO

Right Web Profile: Elliott Abrams
A former president of the Ethics and Public Policy Center, Abrams abetted the illegal effort to aid the Nicaraguan Contras during the Reagan presidency and today serves as a key member of the George W. Bush administration’s plank of Mideast ideologues intent on reshaping the region.

ALSO NEW ON RIGHT WEB

A Tale of Two Interventions
By Jim Lobe | February 20, 2007

The neocons beat the drums loudly for invading Iraq; their approach on Iran is far quieter and unfocused, yet should not be disregarded. Read full story.

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Featured Profiles

Former Vice President Dick Cheney was a leading framer of the “global war on terror” and a staunch supporter of aggressive U.S. military action around the world.


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.


Right Web readers will be familiar with Mr. Fleitz, the former CIA officer who once threatened to take “legal action” against Right Web for publicizing reports of controversies he was associated with in the George W. Bush administration. Fleitz recently left his job at the conspiracy-mongering Center for Security Policy to become chief of staff to John Bolton at the National Security Council.


Norm Coleman is chair of the Republican Jewish Coalition and a former senator from Minnesota known for his hawkish views on foreign policy.


Billionaire hedge fund mogul Paul Singer is known for his predatory business practices and support for neoconservative causes.


Keith Kellogg, national security adviser to Vice President Mike Pence, is a passionate supporter of Trump’s foreign policy.


Christians United for Israel (CUFI), the largest “pro-Israel” advocacy group in the United States, is known for its zealous Christian Zionism and its growing influence in the Republican Party.


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From the Wires

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The Trumpian new regional order in the Middle East is predicated on strongman rule, disregard for human rights, Sunni primacy over Iran and other Shia centers of power, continued military support for pro-American warring parties regardless of the unlawfulness of such wars, and Israeli hegemony.


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A comparison of U.S. nuclear diplomacy with Iran and the current version with North Korea puts the former in a good light and makes the latter look disappointing. Those with an interest in curbing the dangers of proliferating nuclear weapons should hope that the North Korea picture will improve with time. But whether it does or not, the process has put into perspective how badly mistaken was the Trump administration’s trashing of the Iran nuclear agreement.


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Numerous high profile Trump administration officials maintain close ties with anti-Muslim conspiracy theorists. In today’s America, disparaging Islam is acceptable in ways that disparaging other religions is not. Given the continuing well-funded campaigns by the Islamophobes and continuing support from their enablers in the Trump administration, starting with the president himself, it seems unlikely that this trend will be reversed any time soon.


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The Trump administration’s nuclear proliferation policy is now in meltdown, one which no threat of “steely resolve”—in Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s words—will easily contain. It is hemorrhaging in part because the administration has yet to forge a strategy that consistently and credibly signals a feasible bottom line that includes living with—rather than destroying—regimes it despises or fears. Political leaders on both sides of the aisle must call for a new model that has some reasonable hope of restraining America’s foes and bringing security to its Middle East allies.


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Congressional midterm elections are just months away and another presidential election already looms. Who will be the political leader with the courage and presence of mind to declare: “Enough! Stop this madness!” Man or woman, straight or gay, black, brown, or white, that person will deserve the nation’s gratitude and the support of the electorate. Until that occurs, however, the American penchant for war will stretch on toward infinity.


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To bolster the president’s arguments for cutting back immigration, the administration recently released a fear-mongering report about future terrorist threats. Among the potential threats: a Sudanese national who, in 2016, “pleaded guilty to attempting to provide material support to ISIS”; an Uzbek who “posted a threat on an Uzbek-language website to kill President Obama in an act of martyrdom on behalf of ISIS”; a Syrian who, in a plea agreement, “admitted that he knew a member of ISIS and that while in Syria he participated in a battle against the Syrian regime, including shooting at others, in coordination with Al Nusrah,” an al-Qaeda offshoot.


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The recent appointment of purveyors of anti-Muslim rhetoric to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom exposes the cynical approach Republicans have taken in promoting religious freedom.


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