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Daniel McAdams

The Neocon Foreign Policy Walmart

One of the most depressing things about watching -- even from a distance -- the quadrennial race for the White House is watching what passes for a debate on the one area where the president does have some Constitutional authority: foreign policy.

Candidates who have spent little or no time studying or traveling to the rest of the world, and, in the fashion of many Americans in the age of Empire, see the rest of the world as just a series of US colonial outposts, apparently consider foreign policy unworthy of serious consideration.
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Warhead in Charge of US Institute of Peace

Along with the National Endowment for Democracy, the US Institute of Peace is one of President Reagan's worst disasters. Reagan may well have wanted to create pseudo non-governmental organizations to push democracy and peace, but by putting neocons in charge of both he delivered two organizations undermining democracy and pushing war.

Both organizations should be brought up on charges of violating truth in labeling laws. The National Endowment for Democracy, with its focus on subversion and regime change overseas is the antithesis of democracy. The very concept of a national endowment for democracy was cooked up in the mind of arch-interventionist CIA director William Casey.

Likewise the US Institute of Peace, appropriately created by Reagan in the year 1984, is an Orwellian "peace" organization that pushes US intervention and war overseas.
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NED Booted from Russia, Gershman Apoplectic

National Endowment for Democracy president-for-life Carl Gershman takes to the pages of the Washington Post today to put a positive spin on a recent Russian government decision to finally send that US government-funded regime-change organization packing. The Russian finding that NED is a threat to the constitutional order, writes Gershman, only demonstrates that "the regime of President Vladimir Putin faces a worsening crisis of political legitimacy." According to Gershman, Putin is terrified at the prospect of any political opposition and is therefore clamping down by ousting the NED. In other words, as Gershman writes, "the pressures are now building toward what many in Russia believe is a major political turning point."
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Bill Kristol on Iran Deal: 'Its Munich!'

Bill Kristol is the epitome of the neocon mindset: cultivating a staid and urbane image while writing the most unhinged and mendacious claptrap. In his utterly predictable denunciation of the successful Iran nuclear talks, Kristol frames the issue in the crudest terms: if the deal goes through on the US end it will mean the return of $150 billion that was seized from the Iranians by the United States and that money will be used to commit terrorism against the United States. 

Writes Kristol: "How can we debate [the deal] without attending to the $150 billion that is going to a regime with American blood on its hands?"

Kristol cites the National Review which makes the fatuous claim (first made by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, which is headed by a close advisor to Israeli prime minister Netanyahu) that Iran has killed 1,000 Americans since 9/11. It turns out any weapon used in Iraq or Afghanistan against an invading US military that might have Iranian manufacturing origins means that the Iranians are responsible for that kill. 
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Lindsey Graham's Got a Simple Platform: War!

Just when the US presidential contest needed a real macho man candidate, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) today threw his camouflaged hat in the ring. The Senator is staking it all on the proposition that after 14 years of fighting a global war on terror that has produced nothing but more terror, what Americans really want most is eight more years of turbocharged world war under Comandante Graham.

"Radical Islam is running wild," said Graham today, but "I'm afraid some Americans have grown tired of fighting them." 

Graham is disgusted that the American people are going weak-kneed about war, and he won't give an inch. Forget that the US war on Iraq was the reason that "radical Islam is running wild."  Graham is holding firm to the idea that attacking Iraq was a very good thing.
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Sen. Cotton Challenges 'Coward' Iranian Foreign Minister

Fresh off his strange foray into international diplomacy neo-con style, where he sent a letter to Iranian leadership warning that a US deal with Iran would not be honored by the United States, Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) has again dipped his Arkansan toes into the international waters.

This time Cotton, who is in danger of becoming the Westboro Baptist Church of the neocon movement, has sent a flurry of Tweets to Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif challenging him to come to Washington to debate the US Constitution. 

(Might round two include a debate of  Iranian history from ancient Persia to the present, with special emphasis on when last Iran invaded another country? Probably not.)
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Sen. Tom 'Cakewalk' Cotton: Let's Bomb Iran, It'll be a Breeze!

Sen. Tom Cotton is hoping people will forget all the pre-Iraq War II talk promising that it will be a "cakewalk" and that "we will in fact be greeted as liberators." He is hoping no one will remember when the Bush Administration sold the Iraq war based on the Rumsfeldian lie that total victory would take "five days or five weeks or five months, but it certainly isn't going to last any longer than that..."

No, he wants us to forget the Iraq war altogether and simply concentrate on the sublime beauty of steadily bombing Iraq from the air as was the strategy in the Clinton Administration -- a strategy that left untold thousands of innocent civilians dead in both sudden and slow, painful ways.

But this time he wants us to visualize the sublime beauty of attacking Iran in such a manner.
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Neocon Nervous Breakdown: Iran Framework Agreement Reached

Behind that Cheshire Cat grin one can detect, if listening closely, the sound of neocon godfather Bill Kristol gritting his teeth. The neocons pulled out all stops to scuttle any kind of Iran deal. They even called in a foreign leader in the person of kindred spirit Benjamin Netanyahu to repudiate President Obama's efforts to negotiate with Iran instead of bomb Iran. A foreign leader on their own soil to repudiate their own government! 

With today's announcement of a Framework Agreement in the P5+1 talks with Iran, neocons are approaching nervous breakdown mode.
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McCain to Israel: Go Rogue!

With an Iran nuclear deal within striking distance in the P5+1 talks, John McCain is horrified to see the possibility for his longed-for US attack on Iran slowly slipping away. So he took to the Senate Floor last week to urge Israel to undermine his own country’s diplomatic efforts and “go rogue” on Iran. 

Said the Senator from Arizona:
The Israelis will need to chart their own path of resistance. On the Iranian nuclear deal, they may have to go rogue. Let's hope their warnings have not been mere bluffs.
His meaning was clear: the Senator hopes Israel’s decades of threats to wipe Iran of the face of the earth were not mere bluffs. He urges Israel to launch a pre-emptive war against an Iran that even the Mossad does not believe is pursuing nuclear weapons.
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Sen. Cotton's Fabric of War

Freshman Senator Tom Cotton arrived in the Senate with a real bang. First he authored an unprecedented letter to the leaders of Iran trying to convince them (but really the American public) that the US government is an unreliable negotiating partner. Then his real ignorance about Iran became glaringly obvious, as he demanded that Iran give up a nuclear weapons program that does not exist (shades of Iraq, where the same was demanded of Saddam Hussein). 

How did such a relative unknown come to challenge a sitting Senator and win? The Project for a Kristolian Century had no small role. As Mondoweiss reported:
[Bill] Kristol’s Emergency Committee for Israel bankrolled the Cotton campaign with $1 million as he went down to the wire against Mark Pryor last fall.
Phillip Weiss also pointed out that mega-money donors like Sheldon Adelson, whose one issue is Israel, kicked in a goodly amount as well.

This weekend, as part of his case for "calling [Iran's] bluff," he cited Iran's "control of Tehran" as evidence of its appetite for regional dominance. OK, no one should be held to account for a slip of the tongue, and Cotton's Harvard education belies the mainstream Left's mischaracterization of him as some kind of countrified half-wit. But perhaps his smarts lead him to dissemble for effect?
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