FP 50 Inadvertently Reveals Israel’s Dominance of GOP

By Maidhc Ó Cathail
The Passionate Attachment
August 31, 2012

Foreign Policy magazine has compiled a list of the 50 Republicans who have the greatest influence on the GOP’s foreign policy. “Politics is mostly about people — and nowhere is that more true than when it comes to foreign policy,” explains Foreign Policy in its introduction. With the U.S. presidential election looming, the magazine offers “to peel back the curtain on this rarefied part of the Establishment” to better inform American voters about “the advisers who will determine the country’s course in the world” in the event that they elect Mitt Romney. The FP 50, it says, are “all GOP partisans” from the different “ideological traditions” — namely, realism, neoconservatism, and “even” isolationism — that are “currently fighting for the soul of their party’s foreign policy.” A cursory look at the list, however, shows that a far more influential ideological tradition — Zionism — holds sway over the Republican Party.

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Dear Mr. President: Letters from Israel partisans that took America to war

By Maidhc Ó Cathail
The Passionate Attachment
March 14, 2012

According to its June 3, 1997 Statement of Principles, the Project for the New American Century (PNAC) was created to advance a “Reaganite foreign policy of military strength and moral clarity,” a policy PNAC co-founders, William Kristol and Robert Kagan, had advocated the previous year in Foreign Affairs to counter what they construed as the American public’s short-sighted indifference to foreign “commitments.” Calling for a significant increase in “defense spending,” PNAC exhorted the United States “to meet threats before they become dire.”

The Wolfowitz Doctrine

The idea of preemptive war also known as the Wolfowitz Doctrine—subsequently dubbed the “Bush Doctrine” by PNAC signatory Charles Krauthammer—can be traced as far back as Paul Wolfowitz’s Ph.D. dissertation, “Nuclear Proliferation in the Middle East,” which was based on “a raft of top-secret documents” his influential mentor, Cold War nuclear strategist Albert Wohlstetter, somehow “got his hands on” during a post-Six Day War trip to Israel. The “top-secret” Israeli documents supposedly showed that Egypt was planning to divert a Johnson administration proposal for regional civilian nuclear energy into a weapons program. Among those who signed PNAC’s Statement of Principles were Wohlstetter protégés Francis Fukuyama, Zalmay Khalilzad, and Wolfowitz, who despite having been investigated for passing a classified document to an Israeli government official through an AIPAC intermediary in 1978 would be appointed Deputy Secretary of Defense in the George W. Bush administration, where he would be the first to suggest attacking Iraq four days after 9/11; Wolfowitz protégé I. Lewis Libby, who later “hand-picked” Vice President Dick Cheney’s staff mainly from pro-Israel think tanks; Elliott Abrams, who would go on to serve as Bush’s senior director on the National Security Council for Near East and North African Affairs, his mother-in-law, Midge Decter, and her husband, Norman Podhoretz; and Eliot A. Cohen, who would later smear Walt and Mearsheimer’s research on the Israel lobby’s role in skewing U.S. foreign policy as “anti-Semitic.”

On January 26, 1998, PNAC wrote the first of its many open letters to U.S. presidents and Congressional leaders, in which they enjoined President Clinton that “removing Saddam Hussein and his regime from power […] now needs to become the aim of American foreign policy.” Failure to eliminate “the possibility that Iraq will be able to use or threaten to use” its non-existent weapons of mass destruction, the letter cautioned, would put at risk “the safety of American troops in the region, of our friends and allies like Israel and the moderate Arab states, and a significant portion of the world’s supply of oil.” An additional signatory this time was another Wohlstetter protégé, Richard Perle, a widely suspected Israeli agent of influence whose hawkish foreign policy views were shaped when Hollywood High School classmate and girlfriend, Joan Wohlstetter, invited him for a swim in her family’s swimming pool and her father handed Perle his 1958 RAND paper, “The Delicate Balance of Terror,” thought to be an inspiration for Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove.

Having helped sow the seeds of the Iraq War five years before Operation Iraqi Freedom, PNAC wrote a second letter to Clinton later that year. Joining with the International Crisis Group, and the short-lived Balkan Action Council and Coalition for International Justice, they took out an advertisement in the New York Times headlined “Mr. President, Milosevic is the Problem.” Expressing “deep concern for the plight of the ethnic Albanian population of Kosovo,” the letter declared that “[t]here can be no peace and stability in the Balkans so long as Slobodan Milosevic remains in power.” It urged the United States to lead an international effort which should demand a unilateral ceasefire by Serbian forces, put massive pressure on Milosevic to agree on “a new political status for Kosovo,” increase funding for Serbia’s “democratic opposition,” tighten economic sanctions in order to hasten regime change, cease diplomatic efforts to reach a compromise, and support the Hague tribunal’s investigation of Milosevic as a war criminal. Now that “the world’s newest state” (prior to Israel’s successful division of Sudan) is run by a “mafia-like” organization involved in trafficking weapons, drugs and human organs, there appears to be much less concern for the plight of the ethnic Serbian population of Kosovo.

A New Pearl Harbor

One year after the publication of its September 2000 report, “Rebuilding America’s Defenses,” the “new Pearl Harbor” PNAC implied might be necessary to hasten acquiescence to its blueprint for “benevolent global hegemony” occurred on 9/11. Nine days after that “catastrophic and catalyzing event,” it wrote to endorse President Bush’s “admirable commitment to ‘lead the world to victory’ in the war against terrorism.” However, capturing or killing Osama bin Laden, the letter stressed, was “by no means the only goal” in the newly-declared war on terror. “[E]ven if evidence does not link Iraq directly to the attack, any strategy aiming at the eradication of terrorism and its sponsors must include a determined effort to remove Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq,” cautioned the PNACers. “Failure to undertake such an effort will constitute an early and perhaps decisive surrender in the war on international terrorism.” Disingenuously characterizing Israel’s enemy Hezbollah as a group “that mean[s] us no good,” the Israel partisans called on the administration to “consider appropriate measures of retaliation” against Iran and Syria if they refused to “immediately cease all military, financial, and political support for Hezbollah.” Touting Israel as “America’s staunchest ally against international terrorism,” they counseled Washington to “fully support our fellow democracy in its fight against terrorism.” The letter concluded by urging President Bush “that there be no hesitation in requesting whatever funds for defense are needed to allow us to win this war.”

PNAC’s concern for “America’s staunchest ally” was even more evident in its next letter to the White House. On April 3, 2002, it wrote to thank Bush for his “courageous leadership in the war on terrorism,” commending him in particular for his “strong stance in support of the Israeli government as it engages in the present campaign to fight terrorism.” Evoking the memory of the September 11 attacks “still seared in our minds and hearts,” the Israel partisans thought that “we Americans ought to be especially eager to show our solidarity in word and deed with a fellow victim of terrorist violence […] targeted in part because it is our friend, and in part because it is an island of liberal, democratic principles—American principles—in a sea of tyranny, intolerance, and hatred.” Returning to its favorite theme of regime change in Iraq, PNAC cautioned, “If we do not move against Saddam Hussein and his regime, the damage our Israeli friends and we have suffered until now may someday appear but a prelude to much greater horrors.” Prefiguring the cheerleading of Kristol and Kagan et al. for the “Arab Spring,” they assured Bush that “the surest path to peace in the Middle East lies not through the appeasement of Saddam and other local tyrants, but through a renewed commitment on our part […] to the birth of freedom and democratic government in the Islamic world.”

PNAC Redux

Having “developed, sold, enacted, and justified” a disastrous war over non-existent WMD, PNAC’s final report in April 2005 entitled “Iraq: Setting the Record Straight” claimed that “the case for removing Saddam from power went beyond the existence of weapons stockpiles.” Smugly concluding à la Madame Albright that “the price of the liberation of Iraq has been worth it,” PNAC soon after quietly wound up its operations. However, in 2009, PNAC co-founders Kristol and Kagan were instrumental in setting up its successor organization, the Foreign Policy Initiative (FPI), whose self-appointed mission is to address the “many foreign policy challenges” facing the United States “and its democratic allies,” allegedly coming from “rising and resurgent powers,” such as China and Russia, and, perhaps most significantly, from “other autocracies that violate the rights of their citizens.”

FPI’s February 25, 2011 letter to President Obama gave a clear indication of the significance of that mission statement. Approvingly citing the president’s declaration in his 2009 Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech that “Inaction tears at our conscience and can lead to more costly intervention later,” they told him that he “must take action in response to the unfolding crisis in Libya.” Warning of an impending “moral and humanitarian catastrophe,” the letter recommended establishing a no-fly zone, freezing all Libyan government assets, temporarily halting importation of Libyan oil, making a statement that Col. Qaddafi and other officials would be held accountable under international law, and providing humanitarian aid to the Libyan people as quickly as possible. “The United States and our European allies have a moral interest in both an end to the violence and an end to the murderous Libyan regime,” averred FPI. “There is no time for delay and indecisiveness. The people of Libya, the people of the Middle East, and the world require clear U.S. leadership in this time of opportunity and peril.”

With Libya in the midst of a genuine catastrophe brought on by that “humanitarian intervention,” FPI turned its attention to the foreign-stoked strife in Syria. On February 17, 2012, it joined the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, a think tank closely aligned with the Israel lobby whose leadership council is dominated by PNAC alumni, in urging President Obama “to take immediate steps to decisively halt the Assad regime’s atrocities against Syrian civilians, and to hasten the emergence of a post-Assad government in Syria.” Acknowledging that Syria’s future is “not purely a humanitarian concern,” the letter writers revealed their primary concern about Syria in their remark that “for decades, it has closely cooperated with Iran and other agents of violence and instability to menace America’s allies and partners throughout the Middle East.”

Wars of Muslim Liberation

Commenting on Obama’s reluctance to intervene in Libya, Bill Kristol mocked the president’s “doubts and dithering” about “taking us to war in another Muslim country.” Declared the founder of the Emergency Committee for Israel, “Our ‘invasions’ have in fact been liberations. We have shed blood and expended treasure in Kuwait in 1991, in the Balkans later in the 1990s, and in Afghanistan and Iraq—in our own national interest, of course, but also to protect Muslim peoples and help them free themselves. Libya will be America’s fifth war of Muslim liberation.” In a follow-up note to the Weekly Standard, Paul Wolfowitz had “one minor quibble”: “Libya, by my count, is not ‘America’s fifth war of Muslim liberation,’ but at least the seventh: Kuwait – February 1991, Northern Iraq – April 1991, Bosnia – 1995, Kosovo – 1999, Afghanistan – 2001 and Iraq – 2003.” With Syria awaiting its “liberation” in 2012, perhaps it’s too early yet to say, “Shukran, Israel.”

Maidhc Ó Cathail writes extensively on the Israel lobby’s influence on U.S. foreign policy.

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Fikra: An Israeli Forum for Arab Democrats

A surreptitious WINEP project is pushing cataclysmic regime change in Syria

By Maidhc Ó Cathail
The Passionate Attachment
February 21, 2012

On February 10, subscribers to Fikra Forum’s mailing list received a bilingual (English and Arabic) letter from director David Pollock informing them:

In reaction to last week’s exclusive Fikra Forum report, Inside the Syrian Army by Ilhan Tanir, contributor Josef Olmert and I present analysis on how the U.S. and the international community should support the FSA [Free Syrian Army].

Five days later, Fikra Forum subscribers received another email with the subject title, “Leading Syrian Activist Calls for International Intervention.” In his introductory note, Pollock explained:

As the international community struggles to halt the Syrian regime’s brutal assault on its people, Fikra Forum would like to share our newest piece by Radwan Ziadeh, an official with the Syrian National Council and executive director of the Syrian Center for Political and Strategic Studies. Ziadeh calls for intervention, urging the international community to form a coalition that legitimizes the SNC as the unified representative of the Syrian opposition and acknowledges the council’s plan for the future of Syria.

At the bottom of both Fikra Forum emails was the following address:

The Washington Institute for Near East Policy | 1828 L STREET NW | SUITE 1050 | WASHINGTON | DC | 20036 | US

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JINSA: Strengthening Israel by promoting Syrian ‘Chalabi’

By Maidhc Ó Cathail
The Passionate Attachment
February 20, 2012

On February 17, subscribers to the mailing list of the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA) received a message entitled “Want to Know What’s Going On in Syria?” inviting them to a special conference call briefing from Farid Ghadry, co-founder of The Reform Party of Syria. The invitation from the hawkish Israel lobby think tank — whose half-accurate motto is “Securing America, Strengthening Israel” — to the February 22 briefing reads:

In October of 2001, Mr. Ghadry, along with several Syrian-Americans, formed the Reform Party of Syria. A constitution was written and a constructive and comprehensive program has been put in place to bring regime change to Syria. Today, the party is enjoying the tacit support from many organizations and people in the U.S. administration and think tanks in Washington.

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Regime Change, Inc. Denies Its Own Existence

By Maidhc Ó Cathail
January 18, 2012

Almost three years ago, Richard Perle, also known as “Prince of Darkness,” brazenly attempted to deny his own existence as a leading pro-Israel architect of the Iraq war, when he stated, “There is no such thing as a neoconservative foreign policy.” Now, the “nonviolent” manifestation of that regime change agenda appears to be following suit.

On January 4, Bloomberg Markets magazine noted Peter Ackerman’s efforts to apply his longstanding “passion for grass-roots democracy” around the world to the American political scene in a surprisingly critical report entitled “Internet Picks Presidential Candidate If Ackerman Gets His Way.” In the article, Kambiz Foroohar explains:

Ackerman, 65, who made more than $300 million working alongside Michael Milken at Drexel Burnham Lambert Inc.’s Beverly Hills, California, offices in the 1980s, is Americans Elect’s chairman and top donor. He wants to circumvent U.S. politics-as-usual by letting voters choose a presidential candidate via the Internet who, with a running mate from a different political party, will appear on every state ballot for the 2012 election ….

Foroohar goes on to highlight what appears to be the multi-millionaire businessman’s primary enterprise:

Ackerman focused more on non-business pursuits than his companies, says former Emak CEO Jim Holbrooke.

“He is training dissidents to overthrow dictatorships, and I’m doing cheese-spread advertising for Kraft,’’ he says, referring to food company Kraft Foods Inc. (KFT)

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Antiwar.com – Your Best Source for Antiwar News?

By Maidhc Ó Cathail
January 9, 2012

Launched in 1995, Antiwar.com describes itself as a site “devoted to the cause of non-interventionism” whose “initial project was to fight against intervention in the Balkans under the Clinton presidency.” Explaining their “key role” in the battle for public opinion during that seminal “humanitarian intervention,” the editors write:

Our goal was not only to inform but also to mobilize informed citizens in concerted action to stop the war. The war at home was an information war: an attempt by the government to both limit and shape the information that Americans had. It was, above all, a propaganda war, one in which the American government and its allies in the media were bombing and strafing their own people with hi-tech lies.

Back in the early days of the internet, Antiwar.com did indeed do a very good job of countering the interventionist narrative. Writers such as John Laughland, Chad Nagle, Justin Raimondo, Christine Stone, and George Szamuely showed readers what was really going on in the Balkans and elsewhere, helping many to understand the imperative of non-interventionism. Today, only Raimondo still writes for Antiwar.com.

By 2011, the information war had shifted from the former Yugoslavia to the Middle East and North Africa, as country after country was being destabilized by a wave of supposedly “spontaneous” uprisings against the region’s dictators — not unlike the one that toppled Serbia’s Slobodan Milosevic in 2000 — dubbed an “Arab Spring” by some dubious cheerleaders (the term was originally used by Israel partisans such as Charles Krauthammer to refer to an “initial flourishing of democracy” in 2005) and an “Arab Awakening” by others. But while the people were still being bombed and strafed by the interventionists’ lies, Antiwar.com appeared to be either missing in action or even to have gone over to the other side.

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Who will watch the watchdog?

The pro-Israel NGO behind NATO’s war on Libya is targeting Syria

By Maidhc Ó Cathail
December 10, 2011

On December 2, the Geneva-based UN Watch welcomed that day’s “strong condemnation” of Syria by a UN Human Rights Council emergency session, and its establishment of a special rapporteur to monitor the situation there following what it called “a global campaign to create the post by a coalition of prominent democracy dissidents and human rights groups” led by UN Watch itself. The non-governmental organization, whose self-appointed mandate is “to monitor the performance of the United Nations by the yardstick of its own Charter,” expressed regret, however, that the UNHRC resolution “paid special deference” to Syria’s “territorial integrity” and “political independence,” decrying the provision as “a clear jab at NATO’s intervention in Libya, and a pre-emptive strike against the principle of the international community’s responsibility to protect civilians under assault.”

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