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

Who are the “Eurocons”? AND Obama’s Mixed Message on Afghanistan

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FEATURED ARTICLES

Who Are the “Eurocons”?

By Tom Griffin

Neoconservatism is generally regarded as a distinctively American worldview, which is characterized in part by a deep-seated belief in the moral righteousness of U.S. military force. Europeans, however, are increasingly using the term in their own foreign policy debates. These “Eurocons,” who can be found across the European political spectrum, see the continent embroiled in a Manichean struggle between western democracy and Islamist totalitarianism. However, while the neocons and their European cousins have some shared convictions, there are also many differences, and the Europeans themselves often disagree on many issues. So who exactly are the Eurocons? Read full story.

 

Obama’s Mixed Message on Afghanistan

By Gareth Porter

Despite President Obama’s decision to surge troops in Afghanistan, he recently rejected the critical link needed to justify such a deployment—the allegedly indissoluble link between the Taliban insurgency and al Qaeda. Read full story.

 

FEATURED PROFILES

Michael Ledeen
In his obsession with getting the U.S. to force regime change in Tehran, Ledeen argues that the real enemy in Afghanistan is Iran.

Center for Security Policy
Parroting rightwing media talking points, CSP recently questioned whether the Obama administration was really on the side of the United States.

Committee on the Present Danger
At a recent CPD roundtable promoting U.S. missile defenses, participants were presented a video pushing discredited threats, like terrorists employing nuclear-armed ballistic missiles or knocking out the nation’s infrastructure using EMP weapons.

Michael Rubin
This AEI scholar argues the U.S. should consider assassinating Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, claims Obama is eroding human rights, and has been accused of providing misleading translations of quotes from Iranian officials to push his anti-Iran agenda.

Sheldon Adelson
An important financial backer of rightist causes in Israel and the United States, in the last two years Adelson has seen his personal fortune plummet by $19 billion.

James Woolsey
Woolsey, a former CIA director who calls the “war on terror” the “Long War,” lambastes the Obama administration’s efforts to halt Israeli settlement growth in the West Bank as tantamount to accepting that Palestinians will kill Jews.

David Frum
Frum, a conservative writer based at the American Enterprise Institute who worked as a speechwriter in the Bush White House, recently rebranded his website aimed at building a new conservative majority “FrumForum.”

Douglas Feith
A former Pentagon official whose office generated information that was used to push the United States toward war with Iraq, Feith is now at the neoconservative Hudson Institute, where he advocates hawkish strategic weapons policies.

Max Boot
Boot, a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and a prolific op-ed writer, recently suggested that President Obama ask George W. Bush to go to Afghanistan to give President Hamid Karzai “some pointers on how to be a leader in wartime.”

Security Solutions International
Criticized for offering trainings to law enforcement agencies that promote prejudicial profiling of Muslims, SSI hypes the threat of “radical Islam” to market its anti-terror products in the United States and Israel.

UN Watch
Often accused of excessive bias toward Israel, the Geneva-based UN Watch has used a new UN report on war crimes during Israel’s 2008 offensive in Gaza as fodder for its condemnations of the Human Rights Council.

Philip Anschutz
The new owner of neocon mouthpiece the Weekly Standard is an Evangelical business tycoon whose media holdings provide a powerful voice for his rightwing views on taxes, national security, and family values.

John Bolton
The former UN ambassador notorious for his abrasive and arrogant efforts to free U.S. military power from international constraint recently suggested that Israel should consider a nuclear attack against Iran.

 

ALSO NEW ON RIGHT WEB

Public Most Unilateralist in 40 Years, Poll Finds
A recent poll suggests that the U.S. public has become more inward-looking and unilateralist than at any time since the early stages of the Vietnam War.

Obama Embraces Escalation in Afghanistan
In a highly anticipated speech, President Barack Obama announced the dispatch of 30,000 more U.S. troops to Afghanistan over the next seven months, while promising to begin withdrawing them within a year.

A New Counterinsurgency Front?
A think tank close to the Obama administration is urging Washington to ramp up U.S. aid and involvement in strife-torn Yemen.

Obama’s Mideast Mess
President Obama’s decision on a host of problems spanning the Greater Middle East could well determine his foreign policy legacy.

Realities Collide at Halifax “War Conference”
The inaugural Halifax International Security Forum, cosponsored by the Canadian government and the German Marshall Fund, highlighted Canada’s more militant role in NATO.

Right Seizes on Ft. Hood Killings as “Islamic Terror”
A chorus of hawks is using the killings at Ft. Hood to revive Islamophobic rhetoric. 

Allies Losing Hope for Major Changes in U.S. Foreign Policy
Obama appears to be dashing hopes both in the Arab world and in Latin America that he can bring major changes in U.S. policy toward their respective regions.

A Thaw in U.S.-Syrian Relations?
Since the Obama administration announced several months ago that it would appoint an ambassador to Syria, efforts to strengthen diplomatic relations between the countries have stalled.

Setbacks in U.S. Outreach to Muslim World
Recent setbacks from Palestine to Pakistan threaten to reverse whatever gains President Obama has made in restoring Washington’s badly battered image and influence among Muslims.

Sen. Kerry Warns Against Afghan Build-Up
An influential Democratic senator has warned against deploying tens of thousands more U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

A “Pro-Israel, Pro-Peace” Group Counters the Right
J Street, the relatively new “pro-Israel, pro-Peace” advocacy group, exceeded expectations for its inaugural conference here in Washington with over 1,500 participants attending the four-day event.

“Pro-Israel” Group’s Money Trail Veers Hard Right
StandWithUs, a rightist-leaning “pro-Israel” U.S. advocacy group determined to prove that moderate groups like J Street are working to undermine Israeli security, receives funding from donors accused of supporting anti-Muslim propaganda.

 

LETTERS

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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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