Iraq is only the beginning

April 20, 2007 | By | 12 Replies More

Do you ever wonder what happens to neo-cons after they leave the corrupt, nepotism-ridden Bush Administration?  Some, like Paul Wolfowitz (George W.’s former Deputy Secretary of Defense), go on to create their own corrupt, nepotism-ridden administrations.

While investigating Wolfowitz’s resume, I came upon a particularly frightening neo-con organization called the “Project for the New American Century,” which counts Wolfowitz among its past members, along with nutcases like George W., Cheney, Rumsfeld, Karl Rove, Jeb Bush and Ellen Bork (daughter of former judge Robert Bork).  This psychotic little group of war-mongers strongly advocates American military “pre-emption” as a central tool of foreign policy, and lists among its fundamental principles the notion that “American ‘leadership’ (read:  military imperialism) is both good for America and good for the world.”  The organization strongly advocated invading Iraq, and now calls for the U.S. to (among other things):  (a) abandon the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty with the former Soviet Union, (b) take military control of outer space, and (c) “globalize” the U.S. military.  If you want to know where insanity takes root in America, this group would be a good place to start looking.


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About the Author ()

Grumpypilgrim is a writer and management consultant living in Madison, WI. He has several scientific degrees, including a recent master’s degree from MIT. He has also held several professional career positions, none of which has been in a field in which he ever took a university course. Grumps is an avid cyclist and, for many years now, has traveled more annual miles by bicycle than by car…and he wishes more people (for the health of both themselves and our planet) would do the same. Grumps is an enthusiastic advocate of life-long learning, healthy living and political awareness. He is single, and provides a loving home for abused and abandoned bicycles. Grumpy’s email: grumpypilgrim(AT)@gmail(DOT).com [Erich’s note: Grumpy asked that his email be encrypted this way to deter spam. If you want to write to him, drop out the parentheticals in the above address].

Comments (12)

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  1. Ben says:

    Grumpy, it starts at home, not in the White House. You must realize that the folks you would like to distance yourself from, "nutcases like George W., Cheney, Rumsfeld, Karl Rove, Jeb Bush and …Robert Bork" are right behind the NRA (and You) on allowing guns to average citizens. Does that not at least give me the basis for questioning you?

    This link looks much better to me…

    Fyi, the National Education Association is on the list NRA Blacklist, among other notables, National Organization for Women, College Democrats of America

  2. grumpypilgrim says:

    Whoa, Ben, what's with this NRA tangent? What's it got to do with either Wolfowitz or the Project for the New American Century, which were the subjects of my post? And where'd you get the idea that I support the NRA? I despise the NRA, but I respect and admire the U.S. Constitution…you know, that document which talks about the right of citizens to keep and bear arms. Plenty of fine, responsible people own guns, Ben — including some of the most honest, trustworthy and sensible people I've ever met. Of course, plenty of idiots and psychopaths own guns, too, but I've never said that was a good idea.

  3. Ben says:

    Sorry that my post was not exactly relevant Grumpy, I wanted to post my feelings which carried over from the last post, and it got kind of jumbled, plus the Va Tech incident brought some added emotion, etc. You can consider yourself off the "hotseat", at least in my book.

    About the constitution, I hate to advocate cherry-picking, but these guys (John Hancock et al.) didn't realize the extremes that weapon development would come to 250 years later. Flintlock rifles is what they were talking about, not pocket uzi. Of course I agree that individuals deserve the ability to *protect* themself, but this does not include UNCONTROLLABLY DANGEROUS weapons, the likes of handguns and handgrenades. I am all for keeping a rusty flintlock above the fireplace in those (now rare) cases when the American Indians invade. (iroqois? iraqis? iranian?)

    Now to Wolfowitz… Political figures often become prominent public servants after their term is up. Thus, they utilize the notoriety and power they gained while in office long, long after they have been removed. Sometimes the result is for "good" like Clinton and Gore or "bad" like the exxon guys and Wolfowitz. This guy is one to watch for sure.

    The plan for a Global US Military seemed (to me) like a strategically sound route to take at one point during the Cold-War. Since then, my opinion has changed, and I feel like many other (wealthy) nations now share our interests. Not really suprising, seeing how a LOT has happened since the Cold-War. (not to mention My age has tripled since 1985)

  4. grumpypilgrim says:

    Thanks, Ben, for taking me off your hot seat. Indeed, it is easy to be influenced by daily events, but this is exactly why we must be constantly vigilant to avoid letting such things cloud our judgment. There is a big difference between events that are symptomatic of much larger problems, and those that are merely random anomalies (statisticians call them "outliers"). Far too often, public policy is driven by some random event that the media, populace and politicians blow way out of proportion (each for a different reason), then rush to "fix" with some hasty, ill-advised response. You have a hangnail, for example, the media turns it into an epidemic, the populace panics, the politicians declare "war on hangnails," and suddenly there is an army at your door wielding broadaxes to "cure" the hangnail problem by lopping off the arms of everyone in your neighborhood. It's this sort of deranged process that Bush exploited to shove his Iraq invasion through Congress, when the real terrorist threat came from a relatively small group of guys in Afganistan. America would be much better off if it were to stop making such knee-jerk reactions.

    Unfortunately, the same thing happens with gun control whenever there is a shooting, even though it is a statistically rare event (even in the violence-ridden U.S.). Contrary to your assertion, guns are not "UNCONTROLLABLY DANGEROUS weapons." When used correctly, guns are perfectly safe to use, as demonstrated by the very large number of Americans who have owned them and never killed anybody. In the hands of a lunatic, a car or a hammer could be just as much of an "uncontrollably dangerous weapon" as could a handgun — do you want to ban them, too? Indeed, lunatics don't even need weapons: a rampaging judo master could probably kill as many people with his bare hands as he could with a handgun. If some nutcase judo master were to do so, would you then rush to ban martial arts instruction?

    In sum, to Ben and anyone else reading this comment, please take away this one simple, but important, idea: wisdom is the process of keeping a clear head when everyone around you is losing theirs. If more people would find such wisdom, and practice it every time some politician declares "war" on something, then we would have far fewer disasters like Bush's Iraq invasion, and we would all be a lot better off.

  5. jaime says:

    Grumpy … not sure if you caught it but there is a great BBC documentary called "The Power of Nightmares" subtitled 'the Politics of fear' (3 parts – 2 hours a piece) where the origins of the Project for the New American Century and the groups mindset is laid out very well – like you said the notion that “American leadership" is what is needed to save the world in future.

    Adam Curtis (the documentarian) does a great job of bringing both sides of the fear mongers out in the open for the viewer in a visually interesting way. By both sides I mean the Fundamental Christian-Right philosophy ala Leo Strauss (philosopher/Professor UI-chicago) and Fundamental Islamic philosophy ala Saed Kotub whose state execution in Egypt begat Ayman Zawahiri who founded Islamic Jihad and who is Bin-laden's mentor – the guy with the glasses always at BL's side.

    If you can get your hands on it I would suggest a group viewing with friends … be warned it will provoke hours, perhaps days of discussion and years of enlightenment. I went on a tour of friends houses with it on my laptop back in 2004 and did my version of a suburban invasion – for hearts and minds of course …. it shocks and reveals as only the BBC can.

    enjoy – and keep up the good work


  6. Erich Vieth says:

    Jamie: Thanks for the reminder. We posted on that excellent series you mention ("The Power of Nightmares") a few months ago. It was truly a first-rate documentary that put many things in better perspective for me.

  7. jaime says:

    Thanks for the response Erich ….. I appreciate your work on the blog in particular.

    fond wishes that you keep going strong



  8. Ben says:

    Grumpy Says: "When used correctly, guns are perfectly safe to use, as demonstrated by the very large number of Americans who have owned them and never killed anybody."

    I Say: "When used incorrectly, guns are perfectly lethal to use, as demonstrated by the very significant number of Americans who have owned them and murdered thousands"

    Michael Moore has a new movie coming out…

  9. grumpypilgrim says:

    Ben says, "When used incorrectly, guns are perfectly lethal to use, as demonstrated by the very significant number of Americans who have owned them and murdered thousands.”

    The same is true of cars, Ben — are we going to ban cars as a way to stop drunk drivers? That's your argument against guns: ban them all to prevent a relatively small percentage of owners from using them to kill.

  10. Erich Vieth says:

    Grumpy: Check out this post by Jane Smiley on Huffpo:

    Here's how the sequence of events went: In 2000, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Kristol, and others decided that the US was the boss of the world, and was to be the boss of the world for at least a hundred years. Cheney made himself vice president and grafted his ambitions onto whatever Bush thought he was doing. Already in "Rebuilding America's Defenses," the PNACkers were planning to get rid of Saddam Hussein, but then after the Republicans cheated and bullied their way into the presidency (thank you, Jeb Bush), they disdained everything Clinton had learned about Al Qaeda and the Middle East and a potential terrorist attack on American soil. When that attack occurred, they instantly annexed it to their agenda, and used it as an excuse to begin a civil war in Iraq, get rid of Saddam, and take control of the oil (not, as Greg Palast says, to turn the spigot on but to turn it off, and raise prices and profits). Having begun the Iraq civil war, which has resulted in hundreds of thousands of deaths and injuries to Iraqis and Americans, not to mention the internal displacement of millions, the PNACkers have no interest in ending it (and don't know how, anyway). . . .

    One crazy thing you can try at home is to project your own ideas and fears onto others. When right-wingers like West see an implacable ideological foe in the Islamic world where others see chaos and diversity of intention and opinion, they are really seeing their own superpower fantasies. These fantasies have no actual relation to the world around us, but they are dangerous to everyone, as the military fantasies of the PNACkers have shown. [Owen] West doesn't define the enemy, because even having been in Iraq, he doesn't actually know who the enemy is.

    The title of Smiley's post? "Who's the Enemy?"

  11. grumpypilgrim says:

    Scary, isn't it? If someone had asked me, before I knew about PNAC, to name a group of delusional sociopaths bent on world domination, I would have thought of groups like the Nazis or Stalin's communists. Who knew there was such a group right here in America, with members in the White House, the Defense Dept., the U.S. federal court system, and at least one state governor's office? From what we have seen of PNAC, it is more organized, more powerful, more frightening and more eager to use terrorism, than Al Qaeda. If America wants to fight a "war on terrorism," then it should look closer to home: there is, indeed, a "terrorist sleeper cell" here…just not where any of us thought to look for it. Then again, sometimes the best way to hide something is to put it right out in the open.

  12. grumpypilgrim says:

    I keep thinking about PNAC. Here is a group that is expressly dedicated to promoting American imperialism as the central focus of American foreign policy. It believes America, and the planet, would be better off with America in charge of global politics. It advocates the offensive use of military, economic and political coercion to achieve these goals. It claims as current or past members virtually every single person in the inner circle of George Bush's White House. It is probably THE main source of all the lies that came out of Goerge Bush's mouth in his drumhead trial of Saddam Hussein prior to his invasion of Iraq. Yet, why was this not a talking point for every Democratic presidential candidate running for office in the 2004 election? Why isn't it a talking point today? Why isn't the MSM making this a lead story? The PNAC maniacs not only believe invading Iraq was a great idea; they want America to have MORE Iraqs. What's next on their agenda, invading Iran and North Korea?

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