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

The Pitfalls of Forecasting Foreign Policy; Plus, Profiles on Freedom’s Watch, 1992 Draft Defense Pl

FEATURED ARTICLE

The Pitfalls of Forecasting Foreign Policy
By Leon Hadar

With change imminent in the Oval Office, it is fashionable to predict how the future occupant will handle foreign policy. Yet the popular method for doing this, examining campaign statements, is problematic and unreliable, as history makes clear. According to the Cato Institute’s Leon Hadar, a far better barometer is one that assesses basic foreign policy dispositions by asking which camp candidates fall into—Hamiltonian, Jeffersonian, Jacksonian, or Wilsonian. But even then, surprises likely await.
Read full story.

FEATURED PROFILES

Freedom’s Watch
The pro-Iraq War advocacy group, known for its multimillion-dollar ad campaign aimed at supporting the "surge," has seen many of its staff resign in recent weeks.

1992 Draft Defense Planning Guidance
The 1992 draft Defense Planning Guidance played a singular role in shaping the "war on terror" strategies of the George W. Bush administration. Recently declassified documents shed light on the document’s origins.

Stephen Cambone
Cambone made headlines in 2004 for his role in the prison abuse scandal; now the former czar for defense intelligence is back in the news for the sweet contracts his former department is giving to his new employer.

Fred Iklé
A former anti-Soviet hardliner and backer of neoconservative policy, Iklé has soured on the Bush administration’s "war on terror" and says that an attack on Iran would be a "catastrophic failure."

Reuel Marc Gerecht
As with some other neoconservatives, Gerecht’s seemingly diplomatic line on Iran is thin cover for his unrepentant interventionism.

ALSO NEW ON RIGHT WEB

The Growing Militarization of Foreign Policy
By Jim Lobe

Military commanders are taking the reins of U.S. foreign policy, jeopardizing civilian control of foreign relations, and Congress is doing nothing to stop it. Read full story

The Vanishing Laptop Scoop
By Gareth Porter

As the International Atomic Energy Agency investigates Iranian nuclear weapons activities, the origins of one part of the evidence against Tehran— the so—called laptop documentspurportedly revealing weapons plans—remain in doubt. Read full story

LETTERS

Congratulations on an excellent overview that serves as an essential introduction to the right-wing forces that have shaped our domestic and foreign policies for so long-though mostly unknown and hidden from public view and scrutiny.

This in itself is more than reason enough to support your work.

-Rudy Rasin

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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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