Neo-Con Agenda: Iran, China, Russia, Latin America …


Richard Moore


Neo-Con Agenda: Iran, China, Russia, Latin America ... 
By Jim Lobe 
Inter-Press Service 

Friday 05 November 2004 

Washington - An influential foreign-policy neo-conservative
with longstanding ties to top hawks in the administration of
President George W Bush has laid out what he calls "a
checklist of the work the world will demand of this president
and his subordinates in a second term."

The list, which begins with the destruction of Fallujah in
Iraq and ends with the development of "appropriate strategies"
for dealing with threats posed by China, Russia and "the
emergence of a number of aggressively anti-American regimes in
Latin America," also calls for "regime change" in Iran and
North Korea.

The list's author, Frank Gaffney, the founder and president of
the Center for Security Policy (CSP), also warns that Bush
should resist any pressure arising from the anticipated demise
of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat to resume peace talks that
could result in Israel's giving up "defensible boundaries."

While all seven steps listed by Gaffney in an article
published Friday morning in the 'National Review Online' have
long been favored by prominent neo-cons, the article itself,
'Worldwide Value', is the first comprehensive compilation to
emerge since Bush's re-election Tuesday.

It is also sure to be contested, not just by Democrats who,
with the election behind them, are poised to take a more
anti-war position on Iraq, but by many conservative
Republicans in Congress. They blame the neo-cons for failing
to anticipate the quagmire in Iraq and worry their grander
ambitions, like those expounded by Gaffney, will bankrupt the
Treasury and break an already-overextended military.

Yet its importance as a road map of where neo-conservatives -
who, with the critical help of Vice President Dick Cheney and
Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, dominated Bush's foreign
policy after the Sep. 11, 2001 attacks on New York and the
Pentagon - want U.S. policy to go, was underlined by Gaffney's
listing of the names of his friends in the administration who
he said, "helped the president imprint moral values on
American security policy in a way and to an extent not seen
since Ronald Reagan's first term."

In addition to Cheney and Rumsfeld, he cited the most clearly
identified - and controversial - neo-conservatives serving in
the administration: Cheney's chief of staff, I Lewis "Scooter"
Libby; his top Middle East advisors, John Hannah and David
Wurmser; weapons proliferation specialist Robert Joseph and
top Mideast aide Elliott Abrams, on the National Security
Council (NSC).

Also on the roster are: Deputy Defense Secretary Paul
Wolfowitz; Undersecretary for Policy Douglas Feith; Feith's
top Mideast aide William Luti, in the Pentagon; Undersecretary
for Arms Control and International Security John Bolton, and
for global issues, Paula Dobriansky at the State Department.

Virtually all of the same individuals have been cited by
critics of the Iraq War, including Democratic lawmakers and
retired senior foreign service and military officials, as
responsible for hijacking the policy and intelligence process
that led to the U.S. invasion of Iraq in March 2003.

Indeed, in a lengthy interview about the war on the
most-watched public-affairs TV program, '60 Minutes', last
May, the former head of the U.S. Central Command and Secretary
of State Colin Powell's chief Middle East envoy until 2003,
retired Gen Anthony Zinni, called for the resignation of
Libby, Abrams, Wolfowitz and Feith, as well as Rumsfeld, for
their roles in the attack.

Zinni also cited former Defence Policy Board (DPB) chairman,
Richard Perle, who has been close to Gaffney since both of
them served, along with Abrams, in the office of Washington
State Senator Henry M Jackson in the early 1970s.

When Perle became an assistant secretary of defense under
Reagan he brought Gaffney along as his deputy. When Perle left
in 1987, Gaffney succeeded him before setting up CSP in 1989.

As Perle's long-time protégé and associate, Gaffney sits at
the center of a network of interlocking think tanks,
foundations, lobby groups, arms manufacturers and individuals
that constitute the coalition of neo-conservatives, aggressive
nationalists like Cheney and Rumsfeld and Christian Right
activists responsible for the unilateralist trajectory of U.S.
foreign policy since 9/11.

Included among CSP's board of advisers over the years have
been Rumsfeld, Perle, Feith, Christian moralist William
Bennett, Abrams, Feith, Joseph, former United Nations
Ambassador Jeane Kirkpatrick, former Navy Undersecretary John
Lehman and former Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Director
James Woolsey.

Woolsey also co-chairs the new Committee on the Present Danger
(CPD), another prominent neo-con-led lobby group that argues
Washington is now engaged in "World War IV" against

Also serving on its advisory council are executives from some
of the country's largest military contractors, which - along
with wealthy individuals sympathetic to Israel's governing
Likud Party, such as prominent New York investor Lawrence
Kadish and California casino king Irving Moskowitz, and
right-wing bodies, such as the Bradley, Sarah Scaife and Olin
Foundations - finance CSP's work.

Gaffney, a ubiquitous "talking head" on TV in the run-up to
the war in Iraq, sits on the boards of CPD's parent
organizations, the Foundation for the Defence of Democracies
(FDD) and Americans for Victory Over Terrorism (AVOT). He was
a charter associate, with Cheney, Rumsfeld, Perle, Wolfowitz
and Abrams, of the Project for the New American Century
(PNAC), another prominent neo-conservative-led group that
offered up a similar checklist of what Bush should do in the
"war on terrorism" just nine days after the 9/11 attacks.

His article opens by trying to pre-empt an argument that is
already being heard on the right against expanding Bush's "war
on terrorism": that since a plurality of Bush voters
identified "moral values" as their chief concern, the
president should stick to his social conservative agenda
rather than expand the war.

"The reality is that the same moral principles that
underpinned the Bush appeal on 'values' issues like gay
marriage, stem-cell research and the right to life were
central to his vision of U.S. war aims and foreign policy,"
according to Gaffney.

"Indeed, the president laid claim squarely to the ultimate
moral value - freedom - as the cornerstone of his strategy for
defeating our Islamofascist enemies and their state sponsors,
for whom that concept is utterly (sic) anathema."

To be true to that commitment, policy in the second
administration must be directed toward seven priorities,
according to Gaffney, beginning with the "reduction in detail
of Fallujah and other safe havens utilized by freedom's
enemies in Iraq"; followed by "regime change - one way or
another - in Iran and North Korea, the only hope for
preventing these remaining 'Axis of Evil' states from fully
realizing their terrorist and nuclear ambitions."

Third, the administration must provide "the substantially
increased resources needed to re-equip a transforming military
and rebuild human-intelligence capabilities (minus, if at all
possible, the sorts of intelligence 'reforms' contemplated
pre-election that would make matters worse on this and other
scores) while we fight World War IV, followed by enhancing
"protection of our homeland, including deploying effective
missile defenses at sea and in space, as well as ashore."

Fifth, Washington must keep "faith with Israel, whose
destruction remains a priority for the same people who want to
destroy us (and ... for our shared 'moral values) especially
in the face of Yasser Arafat's demise and the inevitable,
post-election pressure to 'solve' the Middle East problem by
forcing the Israelis to abandon defensible boundaries."

Sixth, the administration must deal with France and Germany
and the dynamic that made them "so problematic in the first
term: namely, their willingness to make common cause with our
enemies for profit and their desire to employ a united Europe
and its new constitution - as well as other international
institutions and mechanisms - to thwart the expansion and
application of American power where deemed necessary by

Finally, writes Gaffney, Bush must adapt "appropriate
strategies for contending with China's increasingly fascistic
trade and military policies, (Russian President) Vladimir
Putin's accelerating authoritarianism at home and
aggressiveness toward the former Soviet republics, the
worldwide spread of Islamofascism, and the emergence of a
number of aggressively anti-American regimes in Latin
America", which he does not identify.

"These items do not represent some sort of neo-con
'imperialist' game plan", Gaffney stressed. "Rather, they
constitute a checklist of the work the world will demand of
this president and his subordinates in a second term."


© : t r u t h o u t 2004 

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Richard Moore (rkm)
Wexford, Ireland

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