Right Web

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

The Narco-Terror War and Fallout from Libya to Afghanistan

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FEATURED ARTICLE

The Narco-Terror War

By Charles Davis

Despite vocal efforts by some foreign policy hawks to view the war on drugs as an extension of the war on terror, the emerging consensus—even among the political establishment—is that the war on drugs has been a dismal failure. Drug production—and body counts—surge in Latin America, opium is a staple crop in Afghanistan despite the presence of tens of thousands of occupying troops, and anti-drug policies that have helped put hundreds of thousands of non-violent offenders behind bars have had no discernible impact on usage. But for much of the rightwing establishment, drug prohibition is just like any other war: deserving of uncritical support even in the face of defeat. Read article.


MILITARIST MONITOR

With President Obama’s announcement that he would withdraw 10,000 U.S. troops from Afghanistan in 2011 and an additional 23,000 the following year, the president effectively ruptured the uneasy alliance his administration had maintained with prominent foreign policy hawks and neoconservatives ever since his progressive base began to question his escalation of the war. However much Obama’s conservative critics accused him of “dithering” in advance of his earlier decision to “surge” U.S. forces in the country, they were nonetheless among his more reliable backers when it came to the war in Afghanistan. This alliance, however, is no more. Militarist Monitor.


FEATURED PROFILES

Zalmay Khalilzad

The U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, Iraq, and the United Nations during the Bush presidency, Khalilzad is president of the international consulting firm Khalilzad Associates and an outspoken supporter of aggressive U.S. support for toppling Mideast regimes caught up in the “Arab Spring” as part of an effort to contain Iran.

David Gompert

Gompert, a former vice president of the RAND Corporation known for his hawkish views on defense, served briefly as President Barack Obama’s acting director of national intelligence before becoming a director at Pentagon contractor Global Integrated Security.

Michael Rubin

Rubin, a “scholar” at the American Enterprise Institute who has attacked what he call’s Right Web’s “fake, conspiracy riddled biographies,” views the revolt in Egypt through the lens of Iran’s Islamic revolution.

Ayaan Hirsi Ali

Hirsi Ali, a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute who has a made a career denouncing Islam, argues that Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood may be more dangerous than Al Qaeda precisely because it has given up armed struggle.

Jay Garner

Garner, the erstwhile “mayor of Baghdad,” has capitalized on his experiences in Iraq to pursue oil deals in Kurdish areas of the country.


ALSO NEW ON RIGHT WEB

Kerry, McCain Come to Obama’s Rescue Over Libya

In the face of growing congressional criticism over the legal basis for the Libyan War, Barack Obama received a lifeline from two Senate allies: John Kerry and John McCain.

Obama Leaves Door Open to Long-Term US Afghan Combat

Despite Barack Obama's announcement of a gradual withdrawal from Afghanistan, the reality is that U.S. troops are far from coming home.

Obama Takes the Centrist Option on Withdrawal

By announcing a small troop drawdown, but refraining to set a deadline for full troop withdrawal, Barack Obama is trying to stake out a middle ground in the Afghan war debate.

Neoconservatives Losing Hold Over Republican Foreign Policy

Neoconservative dominance of Republican Party foreign policy trends is steadily waning, with leading 2012 candidates expressing doubt about U.S. military engagements abroad and massive majorities of Republican voters turning their backs on the Bush-era “Freedom Agenda.”

Obama’s Claim of Libya War Powers Widely Disputed

The lengthening U.S. intervention in Libya has prompted Congress to angrily claim President Obama is not complying with the 1973 War Powers Act.


LETTERS

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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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