Neo-Conservative Agenda

Note: this page is a time capsule from Spring 2002.

are well positioned in Bush's cabinet and are attempting to establish a guiding American presence around the world. This presence includes military, economic and cultural. This is not a conspiracy theory. Several web sites openly expound and disseminate their world-view.

The American Enterprise Institute (AEI) is a "bastion of neo-conservativism" and has been around since 1943. At a recent ceremony Bush praised the AEI for having the "brightest minds in the country". A few dozen of these bright minds are currently illuminating the White House. Richard Perle is a fellow at AEI.

Project for a New American Century (PNAC) is an exclusive club of power players and influential thinkers. Numerous members of PNAC are currently in Bush's inner circle including: Elliott Abrams, William J. Bennett, Jeb Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Frank Carlucci, Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz.

The Neo-conservatives believe that a global Pax Americana can be established and that it is America's responsibility to rise to the occasion. A type of Manifest Destiny. Some would call this hegemony, or liberation, or empire building, or democratization. In this day of sound bite marketing these labels can all mean about the same thing. Analyzing this in terms of Republican or Democratic politics is also limited because this is a policy is spanning administrations. Is the US actually pursuing a vision of "enlightened" domination of global geo-politics? What are the pros and cons of this approach? Will it engender democracy or an unruly backlash? How far is the military willing to extend itself? Is this the rise of an empire? Who will pay and who will profit? How will Europe respond? What is the future of the United Nations? Will it make the world a safer place?

It appears that the neo-conservative agenda is bearing fruit and that the recent invasion and installation of US forces in Afghanistan and Iraq are just stepping-stones. This explains why the US didn't want the Iraqi inspections to work in 1997 or 2003. If Saddam had a clean bill of health, we would not have had a good reason to invade. Have you ever wondered why you haven't heard much about an exit strategy for Iraq? We don't plan to leave.

A quick review of a few Neo-Conservative articles.

Rebuilding America’s Defences: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century (PNAC) - September 2000.

This PNAC report spells out “American grand strategy” for “as far into the future as possible” — the project’s reference to the "New American Century". Some major points of interest:

“The United States has for decades sought to play a more permanent role in Gulf regional security. While the unresolved conflict with Iraq provides the immediate justification, the need for a substantial American force presence in the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein.” An invasion of Iraq was of interest, with or without Saddam. The report states bases in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait would remain permanently and “Iran may well prove as large a threat to US interests as Iraq has”.

The US should be able to “fight and decisively win multiple, simultaneous major theatre wars”, and increase military spending by $48 billion to ensure this.

The US should develop “bunker-buster” nuclear weapons. Whereas till now nuclear weapons were considered strategic weapons—a threat of massive retaliation to deter an attack—the development of such uses for smaller nuclear weapons would make them into tactical weapons, that could be used in the ordinary course of battle, as it were. The US, the report unmistakably implies, should also develop biological weapons: “New methods of attack—electronic, ‘non-lethal’, biological— will be more widely available.... combat likely will take place in new dimensions, in space, cyberspace and perhaps the world of microbes.... advanced forms of biological warfare that can ‘target’ specific genotypes (i.e., kill people selectively based on their race or ethnicity) may transform biological warfare from the realm of terror to a politically useful tool.”

The US should create ‘US Space Forces’ to dominate space. The ‘star wars’ program, officially known as National Missile Defense, should be made a priority. The US military should also set up a “worldwide command-and-control system”.

The report says that “it is time to increase the presence of American forces in southeast Asia”. This may lead to “American and allied power providing the spur to the process of democratization in China.” In other words, the US should strive to replace the present Chinese regime with a clearly pro-American one.

The PNAC supports a “blueprint for maintaining global US pre-eminence, precluding the rise of a great power rival, and shaping the international security order in line with American principles and interests.” Thus the document explicitly calls for preventing the “American century” becoming anyone else’s, even if peacefully. Indeed this is the crux of the matter, as we shall see. Close allies such as the UK are referred to as “the most effective and efficient means of exercising American global leadership”—that is, a mere mask for American hegemony. Peace-keeping missions are described as “demanding American political leadership rather than that of the United Nations”.

The Bush Doctrine (PNAC) - January 2002
Note: the following is quoted directly from the PNAC article

At last, more than a decade after the demise of the Soviet Union, the United States has an understanding of its role in the world and a strategy for achieving its purposes. In his State of the Union speech last night, President George W. Bush has done what neither his father nor Bill Clinton could manage.

This “Bush Doctrine” has three essential elements:

Active American global leadership. The president noted that our “enemies view the entire world as a battlefield” and vowed to “pursue them wherever they are.” He also made it clear that he was willing to act preemptively and quickly -- “time is not on our side,” he admitted -- especially when threats from nuclear, biological and chemical weapons are involved.

Regime change. Although President Bush pulled no punches when listing terrorist organizations as enemies, including Palestinian groups like Hamas and Hezbollah, he also made clear his determination to include rogue regimes as targets in the war on terrorism. “We can’t stop short,” he said. And in “naming names” -- North Korea, Iran and Iraq -- he clearly defined a meaning of victory.

Promoting liberal democratic principles. “No nation is exempt” from the “non-negotiable demands” of liberty, law and justice. Because the United States has a “greater objective” -- a greater purpose -- in the world, Bush sees in the war not just danger but an opportunity to spread American political principles, especially into the Muslim world.

The Bush Doctrine is also notable for what it is not. It is not Clintonian multilateralism; the president did not appeal to the United Nations, profess faith in arms control, or raise hopes for any “peace process.” Nor is it the balance-of-power realism favored by his father. It is, rather, a reassertion that lasting peace and security is to be won and preserved by asserting both U.S. military strength and American political principles.

Links to further resources and analysis...

Joseph Cirincione (23 Minute Audio) - National Public Radio
Joseph Cirincione from the Carnegie Institute talks to Terry Gross about the Neo-Conservative agenda. A very good introduction.

The War Behind Closed Doors - Frontline on PBS
The bold assertion of American power and influence around the world.

Statement of Principles - PNAC
This web site is owned and operated by the Neo-Conservatives.

Rebuilding America’s Defences - PNAC
Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century

Bush's Real Goal in Iraq - Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Jay Bookman comments on PNAC Article 'Rebuilding America's Defenses'

Rebuttal - PNAC
Rebuttal to 'Bush's Real Goal in Iraq'

Brave New World - An Enduring Pax Americana - AEI
Global geo-politics are moving from multipolarity to American primacy

No Exit - New York Times
Pentagon Expects Long-Term Access to Four Key Bases in Iraq

Amazon - The War Over Iraq - PNAC (Kristol & Kaplan)
Saddam's Tyranny and America's Mission

American Primacy - BBC
A New Reality in the World

Re-Colonizing Iraq - New Left Review
The Imperial Offensive

Analysis of the Neo-Conservative Agenda - Rupe - India
An Analysis of the Neo-Conservative agenda and its world wide implications

Who are the Neo-Conservatives? - New Statesman
The Weird Men Behind George W. Bush's War

Inverted Totalitarianism - The Nation
The war on Iraq has so monopolized public attention as to obscure the regime change taking place in the Homeland.

Is the US right to single out Syria? - BBC
Comments submitted by BBC readers from around the world.

National Security Strategy of the US - White House
By George W. Bush - September 17, 2002

Hans Blix vs the US: 'I was undermined' - The Independent
Blix accuses the Bush administration of lacking credibility in its efforts to hunt down Iraq's banned weapons.

Manifest Destiny - University of Groningen
The Philosophy That Created A Nation

Manifest Destiny - United Methodist Church
America the New Israel

More Iraq War Links - Constitutional Rights Foundation
Near the bottom of the page are more links exploring the 'Bush Doctrine'

Non Corporate News Sites

Dedicated to strengthening and supporting independent and alternative journalism.

The Nation
The Nation will not be the organ of any party, sect, or body. It will, on the contrary, make an earnest effort to bring to the discussion of political and social questions a really critical spirit, and to wage war upon the vices of violence, exaggeration, and misrepresentation by which so much of the political writing of the day is marred.

World Press Review
Translating, reprinting, analyzing, and contextualizing the best of the international press from more than 20 languages, World Press Review provides readers with a succinct view of the political and economic climate outside of the U.S., as well as how the rest of the world perceives the role the U.S. plays in the global community.

Iraq War
Russian Web Site with a Leftist Perspective

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