Irving Kristol Dies: How Will the Neocon Church Now Divide?

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irving kristol.jpgIrving Kristol has died at 89.
Kristol is the primary intellectual godfather of the neoconservative movement — which his son Bill Kristol helped transform into a major political force.
Kristol and his wife, Gertrude Himmelfarb, were and are respectively profoundly significant intellectuals whose work and public commentary had an enormous impact on Washington’s political culture.
But what now will be interesting to watch is the race between those who want to inherit Irving Kristol’s mantle as the “real neoconservative” and who will take the movement into a new generation.
This title will not automatically go to his son, Bill Kristol, who committed a great sin in the eyes of many neocons by animating the political pretensions of the anti-intellectual populist former Governor of Alaska, Sarah Palin.
fukuyama twn.jpgWhen neoconservative scholar and author Francis Fukuyama was once venting his frustration about the neoconservatives who were driving America into the wreckage of the Iraq War and defending himself from attacks by Charles Krauthammer, he once shared at a public meeting at the Nixon Center, paraphrasing, that he had grown up at the knee of Irving Kristol and was one of just a few in an original group who participated in the salons and discussions in the Kristol household.
Fukuyama said, as I recall, that he didn’t need lessons from Krauthammer on what neoconservatism was all about. In fact, Fukuyama felt that what Krauthammer and some others were writing and speaking about Iraq contradicted neoconservative perspectives. He said that he and other neocons used to criticize government’s hubris for thinking it could change school test scores in Anacostia — and now some of these same people were arguing that America could easily generate social outcomes in Baghdad.
In other words, Fukuyama was intimating that the Iraq escapade was a violation of everything Irving Kristol taught him and stood for.
This vignette is important because I think that a number of leading neoconservatives — including Fukuyama and David Frum as well as others like Kenneth Adelman — never really left neoconservatism as much as the modern variant left them.
This leads me to suspect that in the wake of Irving Kristol’s passing, there may be an effort to redefine an alternative version of neoconservative thinking and perspective than that which Bill Kristol and his close ally, Robert Kagan, have fashioned.
The church split with Fukuyama, but the neoconservative church may split yet again, and again.
— Steve Clemons

Comments

85 comments on “Irving Kristol Dies: How Will the Neocon Church Now Divide?

  1. ... says:

    that was all from the above link and would have been better if i put it in quotation marks…

    Reply

  2. ... says:

    In 1973, as I’ve reported before, Kristol wrote for the Congress Bi-weekly, a publication of the American Jewish Congress:
    Senator McGovern is very sincere when he says that he will try to cut the military budget by 30%. And this is to drive a knife in the heart of Israel… Jews don’t like big military budgets. But it is now an interest of the Jews to have a large and powerful military establishment in the United States… American Jews who care about the survival of the state of Israel have to say, no, we don’t want to cut the military budget, it is important to keep that military budget big, so that we can defend Israel.
    This was a sincere expression of Kristol’s Israel-firstism, that his brother-in-law Milton Himmelfarb and his son Bill Kristol also have espoused. You’d think that or something like it should have been in there, as a core of neocon ideology that would play a large part in events that followed, and that have helped to bring our ship on to the rocks in the last few years.
    http://mondoweiss.net/2009/09/nyt-left-out-kristols-israel-firstism-and-what-about-those-neocon-women.html#more-9338

    Reply

  3. silver slipper says:

    There’s an article from 2007 that compares the liberal interventionists with neocons. The link is http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/04/opinion/04cohen.html .
    It’s amazing that President Bush is listed as a liberal interventionist on wikipedia. That shows how close the comparison is.

    Reply

  4. Paul Norheim says:

    Ok,
    then I suggest that you take a look at “liberal interventionists” (think: Rwanda, Bosnia,
    Darfur), and ask yourself how they differ from neocons with regards to why they want to
    invade foreign countries.
    After that, you may search on “realists” (see also Morgenthau, Mearsheimer…), and
    discover why they often don`t want to invade when the neocons and the liberal
    interventionists want to do so. (but want to do so in other cases, or with other
    expressed motives).
    And then there are isolationist conservatives and anti-interventionalist liberals etc…
    I promise you, this is rewarding if you want a rough picture of the different schools of
    foreign policy thought in the United States.

    Reply

  5. silver slipper says:

    Okay, I finished basic reading. How curious that neocon is actually a more liberal slant on conservative thinking. That makes even more sense that Mr. Clemmons would have respect for Mr. Kristol.

    Reply

  6. silver slipper says:

    No, my question was not ironic. I’ve heard the term neocon so often, and really have not understood what is implied by it. I’ll do my reading. Thanks.

    Reply

  7. Paul Norheim says:

    silver slipper,
    do a search on neo-conservative, and then on paleo-conservative – and then at
    last: conservative. There is a big world out there (with certain vast
    nightmarish regions) – spanning from Burke to Kristol via Trotsky, Strauss,
    Reagan… – just waiting for you to discover it!
    (assuming that your question was`t ironic)

    Reply

  8. silver slipper says:

    Thanks Dan Kervick for the links to Mr. Kristol’s speech/writing. Just reading a few paragraphs, I think I would have to agree with Mr. Clemmons that he was very intelligent. I think it’s interesting that Mr. Clemmons contributes him with the development of the Neocon way of thinking.
    The term neocon just refers to someone strictly adherent to conservative values, right?

    Reply

  9. samuelburke says:

    “war, war, and yet more war, as far as the eye can see. That, in brief, is the program of the neoconservatives, and Kristol’s legacy for the ages.”
    http://original.antiwar.com/justin/2009/09/20/irving-kristol-rip/
    hitler was a giant also…and mao and stalin and all men who reach the heights of power can be called giants…malevolent though, sick with war and power hungry as they may be…still giants.

    Reply

  10. WigWag says:

    Getting back to Irving Kristol and the neoconservative movement that he helped to build; there are even more examples of how extraordinarily successful Kristol was then I mentioned in my comment above.
    Something that is absolutely remarkable and, I think unprecedented, is how successful Kristol was in moving the Republican Party not only into the pro-Israel camp but also into the pro-Likud camp. While much of the credit for this frequently goes to AIPAC and while AIPAC and the neoconservative movement may have been allied, I think the neocons were actually far more important in defining the Middle East Policy of the Republican Party than AIPAC was.
    Republicans were not always so pro-Israel. Eisenhower stymied Israeli, British and French aspirations during the Suez crisis in 1956. Nixon had mixed feelings at best about Israel and as recently released White House Tapes show, he was an anti-Semite. Ronald Reagan criticized Israel’s bombing of the Osarik Reactor and actually imposed sanctions on Israel for carrying it out. George H.W. Bush had numerous run-ins with Prime Minister Shamir and his mignon James Baker famously questioned why Republicans should care about Israel when they don’t get any Jewish votes.
    But now that’s all changed. Republicans who don’t line up four-square not only for the Israeli position but also for the Likud position are now persona non grata in the Party. Colin Powell, Brent Scowcroft, Steve Clemons, Rita Hauser, Chuck Hagel, and Lincoln Chaffee are all on the outside looking in; their positions on Israel make them outcasts in their own political party. The policy positions on the Middle East that these Republicans support not only don’t have resonance with Republican House and Senate members or potential presidential candidates; their positions are ridiculed by most Republican politicians. Who caused the Republican Party to exile these former loyal members? The answer is simple; it was the neoconservatives led by Irving Kristol.
    But what makes Kristol’s accomplishment even more breathtaking is that he succeeded without providing the Republican Party with any votes and without much campaign cash.
    While there are Jewish heavy hitters who raise money for the Republicans; there’s no question that most Jewish campaign cash goes to Democrats. Despite their support of Israel, no Republican presidential candidate has gotten more than 30 percent of the Jewish vote except for Ronald Reagan (in his second term). When it comes to Congress, the Jewish vote goes overwhelmingly to Democrats.
    Jews show no loyalty to Republicans but Republicans show intense and unwavering support for Israel. Clearly support amongst the Christian Right accounts for some of this.
    But listen carefully to any recitation of policy about the Middle East that comes out of the mouth of almost every Republican candidate and aspirant and it becomes clear immediately that Irving Kristol sounds like the author of the remarks.
    How Kristol got the Republicans to toe the neoconservative line on Israel while offering little tangible in return is truly amazing.
    Like him or hate him, Kristol was a giant. And after a brief interregnum, the neocons that he led will almost certainly be back
    Unfortunately.

    Reply

  11. Carroll says:

    Posted by Paul Norheim, Sep 20 2009, 4:12PM – Link
    I also believe that Carroll is invented by WigWag
    >>>>>>>>
    It’s amazing how much attention you pay to me and what I say, when I can’t even remember the last time I actually read one of your post unless I noticed my name in one as I skimmed the threads.

    Reply

  12. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “POA…I’m old enough to be OA’s Mom..in time she’ll mellow into a veritable Helen Thomas… give her some slack…she says her buns are like two fried eggs in a handerchief…the girl’s got issues”
    Well, being assless and bird legged for as far back as I can remember, I have little sympathy for those amongst us that have not adapted to a life of baggy bootied jeans. A skinny butt is no excuse for an eccentric sense of humor. I mean, just look at me, and my healthy adjustment to such an unfortunate and cruel social handicap.
    Factor in Wig-wag’s critical assessment about what lies underneath the zippered side of my empty jeans, its a miracle I go out in public at all.
    And you think OA has issues?

    Reply

  13. Kathleen Grasso Andersen says:

    Guys…can’t we all just have fun??? Sometimes bluntness ir required..mixed with humor, it’s a bit more palatable…The I Ching advises, in a struggle, one should not fight evil with evil because then evil prevails…better to nourish the good in others…don’t forget your microscope.
    POA…I’m old enough to be OA’s Mom..in time she’ll mellow into a veritable Helen Thomas… give her some slack…she says her buns are like two fried eggs in a handerchief…the girl’s got issues.

    Reply

  14. ... says:

    pos – don’t get yer girdle in a knot….
    i am already on one where you squawk under the wings of a ‘bird of prey’ regularly…

    Reply

  15. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Gads, it constantly amazes me what a mouse Pimples is.
    Its a shame he doesn’t live on an island, where he could spend his days running around in circles squeaking “The plaaane, the plaaaaane!!!” to Dan Kervick.

    Reply

  16. Outraged American says:

    Hey losers, I have about a 50% of going to the Middle East next
    month and actually meeting the people I rant on about.
    That alone will probably bring on WW III, because I’m sure to say
    something OUTRAGEOUS to Peres or Nasrallah, like, “Shimon,
    Hassan can smell your BO from Beirut.”
    Easy e has met me, he can confirm that far from being Nadine
    (but have you ever seen Nadine and me in the same picture?) I’m
    a lovely young man, albeit with a chest he couldn’t stop staring
    at, who is everything I say I am, beyond the man part.

    Reply

  17. Paul Norheim says:

    I also believe that Carroll is invented by WigWag.

    Reply

  18. Paul Norheim says:

    “i don’t think outraged american is really helping
    the case of creating a better situation for the
    palestinians, anymore then i think nadines
    commentary is of any benefit to israels
    ambitions…”
    But perhaps the pro-Israel camp may celebrate the
    fact that OA is posting here, while the anti-Israel
    camp may regard Nadine as very helpful – so the end
    result may be the same…
    Personally I think that Outraged American actually
    is Nadine, and that Nadine is Outraged American. It
    would explain a lot.

    Reply

  19. ... says:

    really interesting comment section here that i have either missed or avoided for some reason…
    i am in agreement with paul norheims sept 19 721pm post and dan kervicks sept 19th 831pm post…
    in many ways the comment section has gone off the deep end and are far removed from the initial thread then they need to be… sure we might like steve to talk about certain issues that seem to never come up that are very much about usa foreign policy, but he doesn’t…
    personally i get really tired of every comment section turning into a rant about israel… i don’t think outraged american is really helping the case of creating a better situation for the palestinians, anymore then i think nadines commentary is of any benefit to israels ambitions… the 2 rule each other out often times.. i do appreciate humour and i do get more of that from oa, then nadine who never offers any…
    one poster in particular is always going on about the same topics, perhaps thinking that by always pasting articles and links to numerous sites, that somehow they might change some of the reality on the ground… i am not convinced it does a lot, if anything… saturating a comments thread with your particular take on a topic with endless comments and links would seem to do the exact opposite…
    one of the things i really admire about dan kervick is he says his piece very infrequently which ends up raising the value of his commentary that much more… paul norheim and wigwag would be other examples of this behaviour which strike me as an intelligent response to the comment section…
    creating a better atmosphere in the comments section is a good idea, and obviously i can help by not posting as often as well!! those who fly off in a rage on a regular basis may have some cause for this, but it does nothing to how others will probably view them and probably serves the exact opposite purpose that they might have had in mind..

    Reply

  20. Carroll says:

    Posted by Dan Kervick, Sep 19 2009, 8:31PM
    And maybe Carroll can fill me in about the subtle “context” that makes it all excusable. >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    You need to do less typing and more reading. Carroll did not mention any subtle ‘context’, someone else did. There was nothing subtle about my comment and wasn’t intended to be subtle. And no, I am not going to play the zio board game of prefacing my every remark with an apology to ‘the Jews” for criticizing their zionazis and Israel. Like you, they always use the anti semite slur regardless. That has been their age old ploy to change the subject from Israel and the zios to anti semites.
    My ploy is to now call those types anti gentile and anti American. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander. Get over it.
    I also don’t give a rats ass if AIPAC or Israel is Jewish, Buddhist or fricking Quaker, and ‘the Jews’ don’t get any special consideration from me simply because they are Jews. What are they, two year olds, mental cases that require special treatment?
    If they want to be ‘political players’ with a ‘lobby’ to extract billions of dollars from US taxpayers for their true ‘homeland’ and squew US ME policy for Israel and let their zionazis push ‘their’ Israeli agenda on the US and the American people then they can expect to get roughed up like any other group.
    It that clear enough for you?. If not maybe you can turn it into one of your 3 thousand word posts.

    Reply

  21. arthurdecco says:

    Speaking for myself, I don’t want you going anywhere, OA. Noone pisses me off/makes me laugh as much as you do while generating reams of thoughtful commentary as a matter of course.

    Reply

  22. Outraged American says:

    Paul, I don’t expect anyone to treat me like a “sacred cow,”
    maybe a cow, but not sacred. If you haven’t noticed, I’ve
    insulted everyone, including my own tribe of half-breeds, the
    Anglo-Indians/ Burmese. Truly lazy people and promiscous
    too.
    I hope that Steve is OK with me revealing that he himself enjoys
    my input — not that he agrees with me in any way shape or
    form on most matters, so don’t jump on Steve for that one.
    I only posted my credentials after being repeatedly accused of
    not knowing what I was talking about. In fact, I refused to be
    credited on both the radio and TV news shows. More to avoid
    being targeted by the TSA, an effort that failed. Those goons
    seem to think I’m carrying anthrax in my bra.
    I covered so many topics, from net neutrality to RFID chips to
    Colombia, that I could bore you all to tears, but I am sick of
    crying about the world, a world I can’t change.
    Watching the archival footage of the run-up to WW I and of WW I
    itself, and before that being in a war zone in Sri Lanka,
    cemented my hatred for war.
    And looking back, I probably could have done more to change
    the world had I written the script. Now Hollywood doesn’t want
    movies about a war a bit less than a century ago given that we’re
    in the midst of three wars and about to start a fourth.
    We as a world are facing a crisis of monumental proportions and
    we have to be honest. Political correctness has no place in the
    discourse now. And as far as what matters most, in terms of
    what is the greatest threat to all of us, it is that UsRael will
    attack Iran; everything else pales in comparison.
    We won’t have any health care, even the crappy plan currently
    being put forward, because our economy will collapse, well,
    further. China has huge investments in the Iranian oil fields and
    a big % of our treasury bonds are held by Central Asian banks.
    If you actually read my posts, Dan, you can see very clearly that
    far from hating Jews I have married one, are friends and relatives
    with, work with, admire and respect them. I especially respect
    the anti-Zionist Jews like some of the guys over at antiwar.com,
    Rivero of What Really Happened (part), the friend who I work
    with on the Iran coalition, and my friend the college professor
    who was threatened by Zionists after being put on a list of “self-
    hating Jews.”
    I hate Zionists, and that includes the Christian nutbags whom I
    truly loathe. There is a difference between hating Zionists and
    hating Jews and I’m surprised with all your acumen you can’t see
    that.
    The neo-conservatives are primarily Jewish. Friedman’s own
    New York Times commentary pointed that out. They do very
    much have on their agenda Israeli hegemony in the region and
    will use the US as a cash machine and for cannon fodder. But
    for just calling a spade a spade I get called an “anti-semite” a
    bogus word to begin with.
    If it were members of my own tribe, the Indians, about to start
    WW III, which they could at any minute, they’re not signatories to
    the NPT either, I would be railing at them at least as
    vehemently.
    BTW: I had no idea I was famous. How does one google
    comments? I thought my comments just went straight to the
    FBI, like all my phone conversations and email. I had no idea
    they were in a wider arena than this one and some creep using
    Carnivore to target me. Hope they enjoy when I call the UK to
    ask my friend the vet about my dog’s anal glands, or enjoy my
    infant grand-nephew’s “goos” when I call Australia to “talk” to
    him. Great way to spend taxpayers’ money.
    The Patriot Act is up for reform, call your congressional ass and
    demand it:
    http://tinyurl.com/nf7rxn
    And about Amy Goodman and Democracy Now, the deals her
    people cut with Pacifica and other outlets killed other shows,
    radio and TV. But that’s OK with Dan because a “free” country
    should only have one “free” news outlet. Very healthy for a
    purported republic.
    Also about Democracy Now: our show tried to establish a
    TRANSPARTISAN (remember that word because there’s going to
    be a quiz later) dialogue in this country so that we could come
    together as Americans to talk about things that are affecting all
    of us.
    As such we had Barr on talking about the Patriot Act. Paul on
    talking about whatever he talks about. Fein on talking about the
    illegality of signing statements. Someone from the Cato Institute
    talking about Real ID. Some other libertarian type talking about
    Posse Commitatus, etc.
    Democracy Now has a leftist agenda that sometimes borders on
    the absurd. Like those black kids who beat-up the white kid —
    what was it the “Jenna Six?” What Demo Now failed to mention
    is that the white kid who was almost killed had nothing to do
    with the nooses.
    I personally can’t stand this left/ right division so did my best to
    change it. We reached Middle America, and our audience had a
    lot of people who would have never considered watching a
    “lefty” news show before their kid had come home in a coffin.
    I did my best and as the Israeli writer Amos Oz said,
    (paraphrasing) “It’s better to take a teaspoon of water to a raging
    inferno then just to watch it burn.”
    Don’t worry, though, if my trip to the Middle East comes
    through, I’ll finalize the radio show after that, and be out of your
    hairs, so then less “intellectual and serious” people, and not you
    bunch of stuffed shirts, will be listening to my random inanity.
    PS Dan, I’ve been reading this site off and on for years. I don’t
    ever remember it getting the amount of comments it’s getting
    now, so I think that yours is a specious argument.

    Reply

  23. arthurdecco says:

    Wig Wag said: “I have frequently debated with myself whether Steve’s tolerance for hate speech on his site should be commended as an affirmation of the free expression or lamented as indifference to bigotry.”
    If Mr. Clemons shut down “hate speech” on this site, you, Nadine and the others who type like you would be only a distant memory.

    Reply

  24. Paul Norheim says:

    “Personally, I find Nadine’s constant flights fromn reality far more offensive
    than Carroll’s commentary.”
    Me too. But once in a while I explode.

    Reply

  25. Dan Kervick says:

    POA,
    I agree with you that this Sibel Edmonds case needs to be opened up and taken mainstream, and don’t blame you for trying to get Steve to help. Now that there are specific and substantive allegations on the table, and we don’t just have vague rumors floating around, there is no excuse for ignoring the story.
    This goes beyond the usual purely political wars over which side people are on in the great Middle East policy debates. We’re apparently talking about out-and-out greed and corruption in and around our government, in matters relating to fundamental questions of national security. In the past, Steve has shown a willingness to take on the crude whores and profiteers in the national security establishment, like Frank Gaffney. It seems we have something similar on our hands in this case. How many fingers are in the pie?

    Reply

  26. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Paul, we all have different ways of expressing our opinions, and different thresholds of frustration.
    Personally, I find Nadine’s constant flights fromn reality far more offensive than Carroll’s commentary. And questions’ obsfucating crap is offensive as well. Wig-wag’s constant shilling is predictable and boring.
    As far as OA goes, I really don’t quite know what to think. A huge part of the issue here, I believe, is OA’s somewhat crass sense of humor. Alot of it is offensive even to me, and I’m pretty thick skinned. But its not the gauge through which I judge her, by any means. In truth, I prefer Kathleen’s modest and humble mention of her past activism over OA’s use of past activism as a hammer with which to strike her detractors. But regardless, that doesn’t diminish the actuality of OA’s activism,, and I appreciate her efforts, whether described humbly or with force. Is OA anti-semitic??? I don’t know. She seems to have an aversion to a wide range of peoples, and, once again, her somewhat disarming sense of humor makes it difficult to separate conviction from sarcasm.
    Personally, I’m prepared to give her the benefit of the doubt, while conceding that she is, at times, offensively eccentric. But, uhm, I might, at times, describe myself the same way. Who am I to judge?

    Reply

  27. Dan Kervick says:

    “I’ve interviewed Walt, Mearsheimer, Parsi, Gardiner, Giraldi, and too many others to name. What have you done Dan?”
    Who listened to your interviews? Did you convince one additional person to adopt a different view? Or did you just get more “amens” from the amen corner?

    Reply

  28. Paul Norheim says:

    I know, I know… it`s annoying when commenters seem to make a habit of quoting
    themselves. But I can`t resist this one – also two years old:
    “Posted by Paul Norheim, Oct 29 2007, 9:21PM – Link
    WHO IS THIS GUY WHO DOES NOT WANT TO SHOOT THAT PARTICULAR ELEPHANT TODAY AT 5.30
    PM?
    I`ve been reading TWN for a while, and watched the increasing tensions between
    Steve Clemons and some of the commentators on his blog. The issue is complex, but
    this is roughly how I see it:
    Steve Clemons is a ZOON POLITIKON, a political animal, who is fascinated by other
    animals, especially the big ones. He spends a lot of his time informing people
    where these animals are, what they`re doing, as well as speculating on why they`re
    doing it. Sometimes he tries to predict what they`ll do the next day. Occasionally
    he enjoys hunting too.
    Then some people start telling him which animal he should pursue. And they don`t
    stop there. They also tell him which weapon he should use, even when to pull the
    trigger.
    Does he submit to their demands? Nope. “I am free to go hunting when I want to”,
    he
    says to himself. This make some of these people suspicious: “Who is this guy who
    does not want to shoot that particular elephant today at 5.30 PM? And by the way:
    who is paying for his rifle? Perhaps an organization working for the protection of
    elephants?”
    This makes him angry. Suddenly Steve Clemons becomes a pissed off American. Big
    surprise to some of his critics. Steve Clemons pissed off? He must be
    overreacting!
    I think I would`ve been angry too. As a hunter. But also as a zoon politikon.”
    http://www.thewashingtonnote.com/archives/2007/10/leading_dems_an/
    —————————————————————————–
    That was in 2007. And we`re still there. It`s his blog, folks.

    Reply

  29. Paul Norheim says:

    “So, am I over zealous in my constant indictment of Israel? Well, ask me after they
    have started World War Three.” (POA)
    But there are certainly better ways to do this than saying: “I met a woman who knew
    Murdoch’s mother in Australia, she said Murdoch’s mother was Jewish”. (Outraged
    American)
    Or Carroll furiously informing Questions that he should shut the fuck up because
    America and it`s allies actually saved him and his Jewish relatives and friends in
    World War II?
    And POA, there are actually plenty of highly intelligent people on both sides of the
    9/11 issue, as well as lunatics neatly divided between the sides.

    Reply

  30. WigWag says:

    “Gee Dan, it appears you’ve a fan in Wig-wag.” (POA)
    Of course he does. I almost never agree with Dan Kervick but he invariably writes intelligent, sober and articulate comments.
    He’s an asset to the Washington Note and I am sure that virtually everyone who comes here regularly looks forward to Dan Kervick comments.

    Reply

  31. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Gee Dan, it appears you’ve a fan in Wig-wag.
    I agree with some of what you say about the tone of the comment section. But the fact that wig-wag propagandizes your comment to her own advantage should give you some pause. And it should be noted that the Sibel Edmonds posts can be counted on two hands, which, really, considering the import of her allegations, is nnot near the commentary the issue deserves.
    And to label those of us that distrust the 9/11 narrative as conspiracy nuts takes much of the sting out of your post. You seem like an intelligebnt fellow, but if you don’t question the official narrative about 9/11, you’re an idiot. Brains don’t always gift their owners with common sense. When it gets into “conspiracy nut” territory, its because of the fantastic straw premises offered by the jackasses like questions, who offer up fantastic straw scenarios as if they are our concerns.
    And your observation about the constant “why aren’t we discussing Israel” harangue is true, with me being the primary guilty party. The point is well taken, and I apologize for my zealotry in this area. But, to my way of thinking, the middle east is the foremost issue of our times, and there is NO area of Middle Eastern policy that is not being manipulated by Israel and its multitude of lobbying agencies here in the states. There have been some real epic developments in the Isr/Pal/USA dynamic, and the silence here on TWN is inexplicable, considerinbg Steve’s self-admitted interest in this foreign policy arena. Steve and I correspond, periodically, by email, and he is usually quite graciuous and expedient in his replies. But on this issue he has ignored the one fairly strong missive I sent his way. That, coupled with the lack of attention Israel/Pal has recieved here these last few montrhs, ESPECIALLY since Reid and Hoyers actions, makes me suspicious of the reasoning behind TWN’s silence. That paions me, as I have a great respect for Steve. But it is out of character for this blog to ignore epic and historical developments in the Isr/Pal/USA dynamic. Certainly key members of a President’s own party traveling to Israel to express criticism of their President’s position is unprecedented in my memory.
    And I thinbk your concern for the “Democratic party”, should we attack Iran is far too focused in scope. First, there appears to be little difference between the right and the left’s rhetoric in exagerating the threat. Sure, there’s some RW sniveling about no preconditions to talks, but basically both parties are feeding us the Israeli line of shit
    about the Iranian nuclear program.
    It seems to me the concern should not be for the Democratic party, but rather for our nation, and world stability. An attack on Iran, handled ineptly, may well start a conflageration this enmpty suit Obama is incapable of extinguishing. Whether or not Iran has nukes may well become irrelevent, because there are plenty of nations that DO have nukes, and the means to deliver them.
    And yes, Dan, us nutjob conspiracy theorists DO see a part in all this for serious concern, and debate, about Sibel Edmonds assertions, allegations, and accusations. When we see assertions such as Sibel’s go unaddressed, ignored, gagged, and ridiculed, how do we trust the incentives that are driving foreign policy decisions? Are decisions made out of concerns for national security, or because someone was photographed at a glory hole, or bribed with an offshore bank account?
    The whole system has become untrustworthy, and from 9/11 forward we have been lied to, spied upon, our rights have been trampled, known criminals have gone unindicted, people have been tortured in our name, election results have been questionable, politically owned and connected businesses have been tasked to count our votes, and our economy has been looted by the patrons of our politicians. And in the background, of course, you have the cries of over a million dead Iraqi non-combatants, murdered by the lies of a treasonous bunch of criminals that, to a man, have escaped accountability.
    And you know what, Dan? Israel’s fingerprints are woven throughout ALL of it. So, am I over zealous in my constant indictment of Israel? Well, ask me after they have started World War Three.

    Reply

  32. Kathleen says:

    Can anyone explain why Rachel Maddow, Keith Olbermann, Ed, Chris Matthews etc did not even whisper anything about the Goldstone UN report? Not even a whisper.
    hell Brian Williams interviewed Jimmy Carter about racism the day after the report came out…not a whisper
    I know “outraged American” can. If it is not the control over the media by Israeli firsters…what is it.
    Did we really need to hear about Joe “you lied” Wilsons rant a thousand times?

    Reply

  33. Outraged American says:

    I’ve interviewed Walt, Mearsheimer, Parsi, Gardiner, Giraldi, and too
    many others to name. What have you done Dan?
    Ignorant diatribes? I know so much more than you Dan, and I’m a
    saint for staying as un-insane as I have knowing what I know,
    I’m up for a trip to the entire Middle East where I’ll meet many of
    the leaders, what will you be doing Dan except for wanking?
    Fuck off. I do things, you just…type.

    Reply

  34. samuelburke says:

    the 911 conspiracy nuts didnt tell larry silvertein to say these priceless incriminating words.
    “I remember getting a call from the, er, fire department commander, telling me that they were not sure they were gonna be able to contain the fire, and I said, “We’ve had such terrible loss of life, maybe the smartest thing to do is pull it.” And they made that decision to pull and we watched the building collapse.”
    to pull the building….so how long did it take them to dynamite the building to be able to “pull it”
    get a life and go play logic games with children.
    in this day and age obama cant be criticized because its racism, israel can not be criticized because its anti semitims and 911 can not be questioned because anyone who does is a conspiracy nut.
    sounds logical to me.
    lets celebrate all men who down through history have started a major movement….hitler, mao, stalin, kristol, trotsky, lenin, marx…all those really nice me who deserve humanity’s respect and admiration.

    Reply

  35. Dan Kervick says:

    Maybe the cause of having a coherent conversation about Irving Kristol would be advanced by looking at some of his actual writings, instead of just throwing out everything we can think of about neoconservatives.
    Here are a couple:
    http://www.hillsdale.edu/news/imprimis/archive/issue.asp?year=1973&month=04
    http://neocon.wikispaces.com/file/view/kristol_virtue.pdf
    “Neoconservative” is a very broad term covering a relatively broad and diverse group of like-minded thinkers and tendencies taking shape in the seventies. I doubt we could ever decide who are the “true” neoconservatives and who are the heretics.

    Reply

  36. Outraged American says:

    You have no fucking clue Dan. I bet you sleep in your business
    suit.

    Reply

  37. WigWag says:

    I admire you for making the point you did, Dan. The 9/11 conspiracy nuts are no better than the “birther” conspiracy nuts. The first 20 Sibel Edmonds posts were interesting; the last 500 have been both repetitive and tedious. And apparently at the Washington Note its open season on many national groups including Australians and Indians.
    Like Steve, Pat Buchanan is a frequent guest on MSNBC (I guess they pay him and they don’t pay Steve.) When numerous anti-Semitic comments appeared on Buchanan’s blog, MSNBC insisted that he remove them which he did. I wonder if they were aware of some of the comments that appear here, whether MSNBC would ask Steve to do the same.
    I have frequently debated with myself whether Steve’s tolerance for hate speech on his site should be commended as an affirmation of the free expression or lamented as indifference to bigotry.
    Regardless of how he feels about that, the quality of the comments is clearly detracting from what used to be a very interesting forum.
    Steve once threatened to close down the comment section. I enjoy commenting here and to interacting with the small number of visitors who are interested in respectful, civil debate.
    But I am thinking more and more that the Washington Note would be more interesting if Steve adopted a different format and either eliminated comments altogether or removed the hate speech. I’m sure Steve doesn’t have time to police his site but somehow I suspect that he could find a New America Foundation intern to do it for him.
    And you’re right about the guest posts. Earlier this month Steve induced Jim Krane to do a post about Dubai. Krane is the author of an interesting book on Dubai that I recently got out of the library after learning about it at the Washington Note.
    Some of the people who commented, respectfully questioned Krane’s premise (including you) but others felt the need to insult him as being a stooge for “the Lobby” or described him as someone “who doesn’t like Arabs.”
    Why anyone would want to do a guest post here is beyond me.
    Steve is so generous to invite us to read and comment on his blog. We all get carried away sometimes; I know that I do.
    But his name is attached to this site; when it gets out of control it’s a reflection on him.
    Those of us who comment regularly owe it to Steve to keep the vitriol under control more than many of us do.

    Reply

  38. JohnH says:

    Wigwag’s post is very interesting. My view is that neocons are archetypal “unrealists,” in the sense that everything they advocate seems to be based on a lie. While they promote noble sounding interventions, their actions reveal a totally different agenda. Freedom and democracy, human rights, Saddam’s WMDs, Iran’s nuclear program, perhaps even Osama Bin Laden are merely the public relations cover for invasion, bloodshed, brutality, occupation, and an authoritarian mindset run amok. And so the Republican Party has been dominated by a group that has essentially created an alternate reality!
    Of course, their alternative reality could not become so widely accepted, at least by one party, if it were not constantly lobbied and sold on Fox, CNN and the rest. Neo-conmen are constantly sought out and readily available to offer expert commentary on most any foreign policy issue, usually promoting more military intervention.
    None of this comes cheap. There have to be some deep pockets funding all of this. Who are they? Justin Raimondo does a yeoman’s work revealing the combination of pathetically limited expertise, intense Zionist zealotry and deep pockets behind one such organization, the Bipartisan Policy Center, which regularly receive headlines for recommending bombing Iran:
    http://original.antiwar.com/justin/2009/09/17/the-worms-in-the-apple/
    My guess is that if Raimondo were to scratch a little deeper, he would find a terrorist nest, consisting not only of neocons and Big Oil, but also of enormous military contractors and their plants in the government. After all, look where the Cheney family worked: Dick Cheney (DOD and then Halliburton), his wife Lynne (Lockheed), son-in-law Philip Perry (lobbyist for Lockheed), and daughter Elizabeth Cheney Perry (Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs). The Cheney family was well plugged into the Energy Security Complex, the fusion of government, military contractors, energy companies, and neocons, the brains behind the con job.

    Reply

  39. Dan Kervick says:

    “Dan, I’ve actually done things to stop an attack on Iran — what have you done today, or on any day to do the same? Or do you want an attack on Iran, which would kind-of explain your attack on me?”
    My views on Iran are well-known to everyone who spends any time in the comments section here.
    Now spare me the martyr speech, Mother Theresa. I’ve read it before. Whatever positive things you’ve done, you undermine it all with your ignorant diatribes here. You may believe you have good intentions, but your execution is abysmal, and abysmally counterproductive. Anyone who was undecided about what to think about Israel and US-Israel relations, and who then read your ranting commentaries, might very well conclude that opponents of Israeli actions are just a bunch of obsessed loons with telephone pole-sized sticks up their asses about Jews in general. By mixing up your criticism of Israel with all of your self-absorbed personal obsessions, gripes and irritations over “the tribe” – and apparently every Jew who done you wrong in the past, you utterly destroy whatever independent credibility your arguments might have.
    Try cutting and pasting a few typical themes from your posts into Google, and do a search. And then observe the collection of creeps and nuts who pop up. Do you really think you are helping your kids one iota by fellow-traveling with that kind of discourse?
    Apparently even Amy Goodman is too much of a mainstream sellout for you. No wonder no one has ever heard of your blasted interview program. I’m sorry to dash your fantasies that you are “helping”. But you’re about as much help in fixing US policy toward Israel as is Mahmoud Ahmadinejad every time he opens his stupid mouth and blows kisses to David Duke. Here’s an idea for you: if you really do care so much about your children’s future, try presenting some arguments that might be persuasive to more than the fifteen people who already agree with you in the fringe circle-jerk you live in. Otherwise you are just a useful idiot.
    I actually once briefly entertained the notion that you were a provocateur sent here to make POA look bad, even parodying his nickname. But now I think you are just clueless … actually worse:
    Because you really ARE antisemitic. I know this is the kind of charge that folks around here respond to with kneejerk defensiveness and preemptive outrage. And maybe Carroll can fill me in about the subtle “context” that makes it all excusable. But it’s laughably obvious that you are antisemitic. You are filled with opinions about Jews – not just about this Jew, or that Jew, or another Jew – but about Jews in general. And as far as I can tell, *most* of those opinions are negative. I feel bad for your kids, whose mom apparently hates half their ancestry and is out to save the world from their dad’s tribe.
    On a related matter, it’s becoming difficult to sustain rational conversations at TWN because the discussants have to leap over the off-topic gibberish that is dropped like a bomb on every post. And I’m sorry to be going off on this off-topic bender myself. But people now appear to be be leaving this site to go to other foreign policy sites around the net, as is evident by the small number of comments on many recent posts – except for those that deal with “the tribe” and our favorite Middle Eastern country, or that are comically transformed into discussions of Israel.
    That’s sad, but no real skin off my nose in the end. But Steve, who tries to use this blog to promote his work and the work of the New America Foundation, might want to consider the negative effect on that work and on his ideas that comes from allowing his site to become known as a hangout for cranks, teabaggers and hate-filled, fringe conspiracy nuts. I know Steve has practiced an open and laissez faire attitude toward comments, and that’s appreciated. But a few more gentle interventions and nudges from Steve from time to time, to help keep the discussion on topic and moving in a constructive direction, might be useful. On the other hand, Steve’s own posts seem less frequent here. So maybe he is losing interest.
    Suppose Steve takes on another cause in the future, like the John Bolton UN appointment. How effective will Steve’s advocacy continue to be for topics that are dear to him, like Cuba? Maybe people will just start to say, “OK, so the 9/11 truthers don’t like our Cuba policy. Yawn.”
    I also feel bad for Steve’s guest posters who spend their time crafting some fairly interesting post about Spain, or global finance, or China, or Russia – only to be met by a barrage of “Why isn’t this post about Israel?” harangues.

    Reply

  40. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “It’s particularly ironic and an amazing example of dimwittedness that so many on the left see in Kristol the embodiment of their fears about a Jewish conspiracy seeking to take over the world”
    I forgot the quotation marks, that correctly attribute the above quoted shit to its feloniously dishonest composer.

    Reply

  41. PissedOffAmerican says:

    It’s particularly ironic and an amazing example of dimwittedness that so many on the left see in Kristol the embodiment of their fears about a Jewish conspiracy seeking to take over the world.
    There you go again, Wigbat. It is not a “Jewish conspiracy” that is discussed here.
    It amazes me how you always manage to slime some sort of tacit accusation of anti-semitism into the debate. It is remarkably dishonest, and partricularly despicable.

    Reply

  42. Outraged American says:

    Look at the sheer size of Murdoch’s media empire and look at
    his stance on Israel. That was my point.
    I was just reading an article on Cliff Richards this morning. My
    mother knew him — he’s an Anglo-Indian like we are, but
    denies it, because of all the attendant old, colonialist, racism
    associated with being a “chee-chee” (which means “shit” in Hindi
    slang) of mixed blood.
    Anglo-Indians are often rabid, and I do mean rabid, very
    hypocritical, and I do mean hypocritical, Catholics. So Sir Cliff
    goes out and actually had an affair in his youth and his Anglo-
    Indian mother reined him in and he never slept with a woman
    again.
    My point in this? Murdoch is a rabid and I mean rabid Zionist.
    His mother may or may not be a Jew, but that was what this
    woman who I met said was the belief amongst her
    contemporaries in Australia and she said it was well-known.
    I’ve got nothing more to explain why Murdoch is such a
    Rottweiler when it comes to Israel and why he uses his massive
    media empire to further Zionism, other than his mother’s
    possible influence.
    Paul: do whatever you want — I long ago learned not to expect
    anything from anyone else, I just do in hopes that I can protect
    innocents who have not had the opportunities I have had.

    Reply

  43. Paul Norheim says:

    Excellent comment, WigWag.
    I would like to see Steve`s reply to your claim:
    “People like Steve Clemons and Rita Hauser have been exiled from the Republican Party
    but can’t bring themselves to join the Democrats.”

    Reply

  44. arthurdecco says:

    Re: Posted by WigWag, Sep 19 2009, 7:10PM
    Another heap of steaming poo from ZigZag.
    The “success” of the neocon ideology came about through the coordinated and deliberate manipulation of North America’s wholly-controlled media by their enablers, supporters and brown shirt volunteers, dispicable Zionists all. It had nothing to do with the supposed “brilliance of their ideas”, ideas which have been proven time and time again to be nothing more than convenient bullshit designed exclusively to further the interests of hard-right Israel and their loathsome and treasonous American co-conspirators.
    As is usual, WigWag, you lie.

    Reply

  45. Paul Norheim says:

    Outraged,
    I think most people actually respect, even admire your work and your
    efforts. But why do you expect us to treat you like a sacred cow? You`re
    not so old yet, are you, that it isn`t refreshing when people from time to
    time disagree with you – even from their sofa?
    “Hey Joe Sixpack!!! How dare you disagree with what I`m saying? Do you
    know who I am? I am Mother Theresa, for Christ`s sake, and what have you
    done today? So please STFU!”
    Sorry, Outraged. I respect your work. But I`ll continue to criticize you
    when I feel a strong urge to do so, just like I`ll continue to criticize
    another entity demanding us to treat her like a sacred cow:
    Israel.

    Reply

  46. WigWag says:

    Steve Clemons says,
    *The church split with Fukuyama, but the neoconservative church may split yet again, and again.*
    That may be true, but there’s nothing very unique about divisions within the various schools of foreign policy. On August 28th Steve Clemons joined Steve Walt, Dan Drezner and David Rothkopf in replying to an essay by Paul Wolfowitz in which Wolfowitz critiqued the realist school of foreign policy. In his rebuttal, Steve mentioned several varieties of realists including *semi-realists,* *ethical realists,* *policy realists;* and who could forget *crack cocaine realists?*
    If the realist *church* can be split over and over again, why not the neoconservative church (or synagogue)?
    What’s really extraordinary about Kristol is how uniquely successful he and the neoconservatives were. Their success is nearly unprecedented in the past half century. When it comes to foreign policy, their views are so dominant that they own the Republican Party lock, stock and barrel.
    The last strong Republican realist in the Senate was Chuck Hagel who’s only remaining hope for a political future is being appointed to something by President Obama. The only remaining Republican realist senator is Dick Lugar who, while highly respected, is aging and not energetic enough to mount much of a defense of realist ideals. Virtually every other Republican Senator to one extent or another views foreign policy from a neoconservative perspective.
    The same is true in the House of Representatives. Other than Ron Paul and a tiny number of his ideological soul mates the neoconservative philosophy rules the Republican caucus. And every legitimate contender for the 2012 Republican nomination for President believes in the neoconservative foreign policy as well. Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, Sarah Palin, Mike Huckabee have all adopted the foreign policy that Irving Kristol, Norman Podhoretz and their allies crafted.
    Even more amazing is the brazen way that the neoconservatives felt free to attack Republican icons. They’ve marginalized James Baker; they’ve successfully turned Brent Scowcroft and Colin Powell into outcasts from own political party. They helped the Democrats make George H.W. Bush look like an out of touch wimp and they even managed to turn the two Presidents Bush against each other in a very public spat over the Iraq War.
    Today’s Republicans consult grand old men like Henry Kissinger just to be polite and they’ve forgotten the foreign policy ideals that Richard Nixon stood for. People like Steve Clemons and Rita Hauser have been exiled from the Republican Party but can’t bring themselves to join the Democrats.
    The neocons even got away with fiercely criticizing the Republican deity; Ronald Reagan. When Norman Podhoretz called Reagan *an appeaser* it didn’t generate so much as a whimper from the Republican Party faithful.
    What makes Kristol’s total and complete subjugation of the Republican Party even more amazing is that he started out as a Marxist (a Trotskyite no less); in the 1960s he was a Social Democrat who supported Hubert Humphrey and in the 1970s the neoconservatives (or what would become the neoconservative movement) coalesced around the foreign policy ideals of another Democrat, Scoop Jackson.
    In a coup that may be unprecedented in American history, in less than half a century this group of one time leftists and long time Democrats completely captured the foreign policy apparatus of the Republican Party. The Republican Party is now completely dominated by the neoconservative movement in a way that is almost remarkable to behold.
    Many people have commented that a large percentage of the neocon leadership is Jewish. Of course that’s both true and ironic. One of the only constituencies in the United States that hasn’t succumbed to neocon/republican ideology is American Jews who continue to be the most loyal Democratic voters after African Americans (80 percent of the Jewish vote went to Obama). And of course American Jews opposed the neocon’s Iraq ambitions in much higher percentages than the American public at large. But Jews make up only a small percentage of the American electorate and apparently Christian Americans can’t get enough of what the neocons are peddling. Those interested in reading a neocon’s lament that the movement has no resonance with the American Jewish community should read the new book by Norman Podhoretz *Why are Jews Liberal* (Doubleday, 337 pages). Leon Wieseltier gave it an interesting but unsurprisingly poor review in last week’s New York Times Book Review.
    It’s particularly ironic and an amazing example of dimwittedness that so many on the left see in Kristol the embodiment of their fears about a Jewish conspiracy seeking to take over the world. Kristol didn’t learn his craft from Moses. While Kristol may have abandoned the Marxist ideology of his youth, he never forgot the lessons he learned by studying Vladamir Lenin. It was Lenin, one of the premier leftists in world history (who Kristol once admired) and who provided him with the strategy he used to take control of the Republican Party.
    The Liberal (Rockefeller) Republicans are dead and gone (Lincoln Chafee was the last one in the Senate and Collins and Snowe are poor substitutes.) The realist Republicans are in exile. Despite the failure in Iraq, the neocons that Kristol gave birth to are still in the ascendancy.
    I have a sneaking suspicion that they will be calling the foreign policy shots once again a lot sooner than many of us care to think.

    Reply

  47. DonS says:

    !!! (I don’t know WHAT got messed up on my 6:47 comment — natch the first time CAPTCHA went through the first time — but without edit possibility, I’m going to post the whole thing again. Sorry !!!
    Obfuscating Jewishness with the political agenda of radical Zionists, a tactic of the right wing Zionists and their fellow travelers is a disgusting manifestation that presents sometimes as innocent protectiveness and sometimes as self righteous defiance. And, piggybacking on the general theme of Anti-semitism, this tactic coalesces around the holocaust. I deplore the leveraging of the holocaust in just about any way; whether leveraging non-Jews into some guilt-related rubber stamp of anything Israel; or leveraging Jews into survivor guilt or frenzy of fear. I’ve said this in many ways forever.
    Like any tribal identification, it’s easy to generalize about Jews. But our effort is to educate about the distinction of Jews and Zionism, not to succumb to prejudicial generalizations. It’s an uphill battle. But it’s right for because of it’s political implications and in and of itself. It seems to me especially important to hammer home the distinction when engaging in the hard hitting arguments that are needed to confront the disgusting tactics of the necons, Israel firsters, fundies, and RW Zionists.
    It’s unwise I think to assume that we all understand the same context and are not ranting about Jews, Jews, Jews.
    As to the assumption that having a Jewish mother accounts for being a rabid Zionist, my thinking is that having the family connection is a contributing cause, but the rabid aspect comes from having a fucked up family connection. I’m not sure we can beat the wingers at their despicable game — or true belief, call it what you will. But I’m going to try not to lose my humanity in the process.
    PS, to Carroll’s pithy comment: it’s not the long time posters who need to get the context; it’s the droppers inners — which may or may not be very important at all.
    But, I have to agree that [sane] Jews ‘in general’ need to start making a hell of a lot more noise about not wanting to have the wingers speak for them. To hell with the hand wringing.

    Reply

  48. DonS says:

    Ob
    It’s unwise I think to assume that we all understand the same context and are not ranting about Jews, Jews, Jews.
    As to the assumption that having a Jewish mother accounts for being a rabid Zionist, my thinking is that having the family connection is a contributing cause, but the rabid aspect comes from having a fucked up family connection. I’m not sure we can beat the wingers at their despicable game — or true belief, call it what you will. But I’m going to try not to lose my humanity in the process.
    PS, to Carroll’s pithy comment: it’s not the long time posters who need to get the context; it’s the droppers inners — which may or may not be very important at all.
    But, I have to agree that [sane] Jews ‘in general’ need to start making a hell of a lot more noise about not wanting to have the wingers speak for them. to hell with the hand wringing.

    Reply

  49. arthurdecco says:

    Thank you for telling it like it is, Carroll, so that I didn’t have to.

    Reply

  50. Carroll says:

    Posted by Paul Norheim, Sep 19 2009, 5:08PM – Link
    Outraged,
    towards you, as well as towards many who support Israel, I will continue to argue as
    I`ve always done here: that there is an important distinction to be drawn between the
    Israeli government and Jews in general. Some Jews in the diaspora feel an unconditional loyalty towards Israel. Others don`t. Many are somewhere in the middle.>>>>>
    Oh do shut the hell up. The long time posters here, including myself, POA, arthur and every other critic of Israel and I-P at TWN have made that ‘distinction’ between Jews and zios to hell and back for 9 years. Long before you showed up.
    We are tired of repeating it ad nausum and are not going to repeat it ad nausum because it makes absolutely no difference in the zionazi slurring of ‘everyone’ as anti semities. If “The Jews” can handle having the Zionazis speak as their political leaders they can handle whatever is said here. If they can’t handle it then they know what they have to change to stop it.

    Reply

  51. Paul Norheim says:

    Outraged,
    in case you`re interested, here`s two of my comments in the first thread I
    posted on at TWN – almost exactly two years ago. From my luxurious position in
    Norway, I haven`t changed position on these issues, and I think that some of my
    points then are still relevant – also to this thread.
    “Posted by Paul Norheim, Oct 04 2007, 1:50PM – Link
    This is a mine field. But let me try.
    There are two principal reasons why everyone, attackers as well as defenders of
    the Israeli government (and the lobby organizations in several countries,
    working on behalf of Israel) should try to distinguish between genuine
    criticism and anti-semitism.
    The first one is the most important: anti-semitism is a deep rooted historical
    fact and a wide spread phenomenon, also today.
    The second one is that when Israel acts in a way that is questionable (as it
    often does, like any government or state), it is crucial that we have a
    language that makes it possible to criticize that state or government, without
    hurting Jews in general at the same time, as a kind of “collateral damage”.
    Then there is an additional, tactical one: if you are not rhetorically careful
    when you criticize Israel or the lobby organizations, you make it very easy for
    them to just quote you, to prove that you are an anti-semite, nothing more,
    nothing less, and this way your critique is less efficient.
    Even the more reasonable among supporters of Israel should see the importance
    of this. If it is impossible to criticize the actions of that state without
    being labeled an anti-semite, the critique itself sooner or later becomes
    violent, nasty – it may even transform into anti-semitism, because every
    possible language is criminalized. And if an entity, a state or an
    organization, is treated as a holy cow, never listening to critique, that
    entity will go in a bad direction, even if it once was a victim or acting for a
    good cause.
    The atmosphere for such a critique is very different, depending on where it
    comes from. In several European countries it is relatively easy to criticize
    Israel today, without being labeled an anti-semite by others than the Israeli
    ambassador in that country. The main news media does this all the time, just as
    it criticize Russia, Burma, Australia, Saudi Arabia, or Poland (I am not
    comparing here; just a random list of countries).
    This is very fortunate, and in the long run I believe it serves both parties in
    the Middle East conflict. Even Germany is now, to some extent able to criticize
    Israel, and deserves that right, because it has examined its own guilt in the
    Holocaust in an admirable way through the decades after WW2. A few years ago,
    both Yasir Arafat and the Prime Minister of Israel (I can`t remember who it was
    at the time, but it was not Sharon!) in a certain situation wanted to talk to
    Germany, because both seemed to trust them more than they trusted USA or UK
    representatives, and that is quite remarkable.
    In the Arab countries (and Iran) the critique of Israel is rhetorically mixed
    with the language of anti-semitism. For me it is hard to sit comfortably in a
    peaceful European country, demanding that the Arab and Iranian people should
    separate those two languages, because there are hundreds of thousands of
    victims of Israeli actions in some of those countries. But in the long run, one
    of the conditions for a more peaceful Middle East, is that also members of
    these countries are able to develop a language separated from the anti-semitic
    vocabulary. This is of course a utopian project, given the current Israeli
    aggression, arrogance, and – yes: racism towards the Palestinians.
    In the United States, the situation is of course very different from the Middle
    East, or Europe. The readers and commentators at Washingtonote has first hand
    experience and knowledge in these matters. I can only watch it from a distance.
    The old historical factors are different than here: many Jews escaped European
    pogroms and the genocide of the Third Reich, settling down in America.
    If I am correct, crucial things happened during the Reagan years which changed
    the whole picture, and contributed in shaping the current situation. Many
    conservatives in the GOP traditionally disliked the American Jews; they were
    “liberal intellectuals”, “leftist” etc. But during the 1980s, the Israel
    friendly born again Christians and the GOP became strongly connected. GOP
    needed their votes, and had to become a strong advocate of Israel to get those
    votes. And now, also the democrats need the votes of these conservative born
    again Christians, more than they need the votes of the “liberal Jews”. And than
    you have an absurd situation where nobody can criticize Israel, nor AIPAC, nor
    the lunatic Armageddon people, and this is also shaping the Middle East policy
    of your country.
    As a result, the US Middle East policy, as far as I can judge, is shaped by two
    main components which are in conflict with each other.
    In short: Oil & Israel. Recently, a third component became more important:
    terrorism.
    Given this background, it is hard to separate domestic and foreign policy from
    each other. When the US supports Israel more or less unconditionally, with
    words, money and weapons, it is at the same time acting against its own
    interests in security (terrorism, anti-americanism) and energy (oil and gas),
    as well as in its effort to “establish a peaceful Middle East.” The last effort
    has not been credible for years. It has probably never been credible.
    These are the contradictions of US Middle East policy. When you add into that
    the recent project of regime change, and democratization of the M.E. with
    military means (with the US Army trying to act like a Leon Trotsky or Lord
    Byron on behalf the oppressed people and victims of tyranny), the result is
    chaos and tragedies.
    Let me add one thing here. Israel has several enemies. But if I was an Israeli
    citizen, I would be more suspicious towards some of my so called “friends” then
    my traditional enemies. The Christian Right, the fundamentalist type of people,
    are such “friends”. Their “friendship” with Israel and everything Jewish is a
    pure abstraction. The Jews and the state of Israel is for them simply one of
    the main dramatic components in the Armagedon event.
    These people do not want to protect or defend Israel or Jews any more than
    Osama bin Laden or Ahmedinejad want to do that. In their view, the Middle East
    will and shall end in an apocalyptic blood bath, a Mega-Holocaust where the
    Jews will become victims again, just like the Arabs, that is, if they don`t see
    Jesus Christ and become born again in their last hour.
    For the fundamentalist Christians, US foreign policy should serve this fantasy
    of Armagedon. They couldn`t care less about US “security” or “American
    interests”, if these goals are in conflict with their weird reading of the
    Bible.
    The Israeli hard liners are of course well aware of this, but as long as the
    fundament Christians “support” provides American good will, money and weapons,
    they don`t care. This way, the Israeli hard liners and the fundamentalist
    Christians are each others “useful idiots”, with more sane citizens of both
    countries playing the role as hostage in this dangerous game.
    I realize that it`s hard to get heard in the big news media when you criticize
    Israel and the strong US support of Israel, or AIPAC and the way USA is
    influenced by pro Israel hard liners. To have any chance of being heard by
    anyone, except people who already agree with you, as well as the destructive
    forces on the Israeli/Christian fundamentalist/hawkish side (they listen, eager
    to label anyone who doesn`t, support them as “anti-semits”), I can only see one
    workable strategy:
    Developing a language that is not infected by the rhetoric of anti-semitism.
    Being careful with regards to the old and nasty vocabulary, connotations, and
    tone. The majority of the American population are ignorant about what Israel is
    doing to the Palestinians. If you give the hard liners an easy chance to label
    you as someone who hate the Jews, you will never get heard by anybody else.
    I think it is as simple – and difficult – as that.
    ————————————————————
    And this – re a possible attack on Iran – is an excerpt from my very first post
    here, as far as I can remember:
    Posted by Paul Norheim, Oct 03 2007, 1:03PM – Link
    When some commentators discuss the perceived similarities between the build up
    to the Iraqi war, and the current crisis with Iran, they concentrate on the
    White House strategies and tactics. But there are also similarities concerning
    the reactions within the political opposition, the news media, and the public
    in general.
    Initially, most of the politicians from both sides, and the news media as well,
    react by saying, or thinking: “This can`t be true.”
    Later they realize that “Actually, it seems to be true.”
    And, thinking about it, listening to the arguments, they can`t see any
    alternatives.
    So they support it. And years later they despair and get angry, seeing that
    everything has become a mess.
    (…)
    What interests me, as a non-insider, watching this from Europe, is this
    peculiar cognitive, moral and political metamorphosis that seems to take place
    within the American elite – the transition from: “this is crazy, and therefor
    it will certainly not happen”, to: “this will happen, and I accept it”.
    This transitional movement in judging the events is, I think, more crucial then
    the blame game in the aftermath.
    The United States is far from being a perfect democracy (and even less so after
    the efforts of energetic gentlemen like David Addington and John Yoo). But
    certain people, certain groups within the elite, but outside the White House –
    and among them a lot of people formally in “opposition” – have some power, and
    implicitly, some responsibility for the events.
    These gentlemen and women share the responsibility with the White House for the
    tragedies later unfolding – exactly at that peculiar moment when they
    (collectively, it seems to me) go from “this is sheer lunacy” to “this has to
    be done”.
    Certainly, the origin of the current Iraqi nightmare may be detected to the
    dark mind of Dick C., the guts of George W., and a handful of neocon articles
    and books, but the responsibility also belong to all those who at some point
    voted so that their dreams could become a part of US foreign policy, or
    supported their arguments and actions in the news medias.
    I don`t think, watching this from Europe, that there will be any significant
    change in American foreign policy in any foreseeable future. As long as the
    idea of American exceptionalism is a vital concept for the population; as long
    as 99 % of the population believe that Americans, in contrast to people in
    certain other countries, at least have good intentions, and as long as the
    policy makers and elite groups consider wars, not only as an extension of
    politics with other means, but as a normal instrument, beside diplomacy and the
    other options, things will probably get worse.
    The journalist Seymour Hersh is among the happy few not responsible for the
    current crisis. He says (in the New Yorker):
    “Now the emphasis is on “surgical” strikes on Revolutionary Guard Corps
    facilities in Tehran and elsewhere, which, the Administration claims, have been
    the source of attacks on Americans in Iraq. What had been presented primarily
    as a counter-proliferation mission has been reconceived as counterterrorism.”
    If this is true, it makes Hillary Clintons support for the Kyl-Lieberman
    resolution (calling for the Iranian Revolutionary Guard to be labeled a
    terrorist organisation), even more serious. In retrospect, history may note
    that Clinton in effect supported Bush both times he made decisions of tragic
    proportions in his foreign policy. And she is not alone in that. You may
    remember presidential candidates, former rivals of Mr. Bush, blaming him for
    going to war against Iraq instead of Iran, where there actually was a “smoking
    gun”?
    Given the current chaos in the Middle East, extending the war to Iran would of
    course be madness. But during the coming months, I am afraid we`ll see that
    very few of those with a powerful voice has the political courage, moral
    judgement and sound instinct to speak clearly on behalf of the sane people
    among the population of America. Most likely, the White House will provoke the
    Iranians, and one event will lead to the next in an endless chain of
    provocations and replies. And this time, some of the European leaders (the
    Germans, in particular) may react just like the American elite, described
    above, reacted in the build up stage of the Iraqi war. The French and the
    British leaders may already have accepted the escalation.
    History does not repeat itself. However, just like in the period between 1914
    and 1945, we seem to live through an “age of the extremes.” The current leaders
    of Israel, Palestine, Iran, USA, as well as some influential non governmental
    groups and organisations, put things in motion in several nightmarish,
    unpredictable directions. And just like then, the “center” is drifting, unable
    to discover the fatal strategies and tactics being planned, and unable to react
    while they unfold in real, at some remote places, far from Washington. Lacking
    in political imagination and moral judgement, from time to time they even vote
    on behalf of the logic of the lunatics.”
    http://www.thewashingtonnote.com/archives/002388.php

    Reply

  52. Outraged American says:

    Dan, I’ve actually done things to stop an attack on Iran — what
    have you done today, or on any day to do the same? Or do you
    want an attack on Iran, which would kind-of explain your attack
    on me?
    I volunteered as a publicist, for two years, with a humanitarian
    aid group helping Afghan and Iraqi refugees. What did you do?
    I worked for NOTHING and I mean nothing for now almost five
    years as a TV and radio news producer dedicated to helping
    Americans understand what is going on in this country and in
    the world.
    What PRECISELY is self-indulgent about wanting Iranian children
    and kids all over the world to decide their own fates without the
    horror of a nuclear war?
    Where do you get off? If Murdoch’s mother was Jewish it would
    explain his virulent Zionism, which has been used to poison the
    political discourse in this country and the world (SKY NEWS —
    you get it in fucking India) and prepare us for an attack on Iran/
    Syria/ Jordan/ Lebanon/ etc., and ad nauseam.
    Or are you suggesting that the belief system we’re raised in
    ends up having nothing to do with our world view? Because I’m
    living fucking proof that you can leave Catholicism but it doesn’t
    leave you.
    Paul, I would suggest you read my comments about Jews.
    Maybe your computer has been down. Please go back to
    previous threads.
    I don’t have your guilt — I have done nothing to kill Jews, but
    an attack on Iran blamed on the Jews will kill them. I refuse to
    be politically correct in calling Zionists racist fucking assholes
    who by the power of their Lobby are going to cause World War
    III.
    I think that Norheim and Kervick are pissed because they feel
    impotent, so they’re fear biting. They can’t stand the idea that
    someone does have the courage to actually go out AND FUCKING
    DO SOMETHING rather than type on a message board.
    Easy e knows this because I’ve met him: I wrote a script about
    the partition of India and Pakistan that was optioned by a
    prominent Hollywood producer. The starting bid for that script
    was $600,000.
    I turned it down once it hit me that it could cause WW III
    because it would inflame old sores. I’d just been in India
    shooting a commercial, so knew how tense the situation was.
    Then, I was commissioned to write a script by another big
    Hollywood producer on WW I. I went through as much archival
    footage as I could find (and Time Warner has an amazing series)
    and had to turn that down too because it was too painful to
    watch the madness that led to the first World War. The War to
    End All Wars. Much less write a work of fiction/ romance based
    around it.
    I can prove all of this.
    So, I lost out on a few million, quit the industry and went into
    trying to help the people whose lives my tax dollars have
    destroyed and to stop the REAL WAR TO END ALL WARS.
    Call me whatever the hell you want to call me, but I do things,
    and sacrifice and take risks, like my possible trip to the Middle
    East where Israel might hold me or deport me or whatever, to try
    to make the world a better place.

    Reply

  53. Carroll says:

    To any fence sitters.
    “Something happens. Then you make a choice and take a side”.
    “The Quiet American”, Graham Green
    Or you sit on the fence, never come to a conclusion, never make a choice, never take a side…never “do” anything. If most of the world were fence sitters, Hitler would have won and all the Jews in the world would be long dead…as I have said before.
    Now we have a similar nazi mentality operating in Israel today against the Palestines.
    Make a fucking choice.

    Reply

  54. Paul Norheim says:

    Outraged,
    towards you, as well as towards many who support Israel, I will continue to argue as
    I`ve always done here: that there is an important distinction to be drawn between the
    Israeli government and Jews in general. Some Jews in the diaspora feel an
    unconditional loyalty towards Israel. Others don`t. Many are somewhere in the middle.
    I know that you know this. But the risk of an Israeli/US attack on Iran and the fact
    that you have children doesn`t give you a license to use stupid and primitive
    arguments.
    People like Netanyahu and Lieberman work 24/7 to blur the line between their own
    crimes and the fate of Jews all over the world. Their motive is obvious, and contains
    a very dangerous logic: If they succeed, an attack on certain actions of the state of
    Israel, like discrimination and war crimes, is an attack on Jews. Some critics of
    Israel attempt to blur the same line. There may be several different, even opposing
    motives for doing so, but it`s dangerous, and I oppose it – as I`ve done for decades.
    Now, some pro-Israel commenters here may think that I am unfair towards Israel.
    Critics of Israel that I am pedantic or “academic” in this distinction. And Carroll
    may claim that I change opinions depending on who I talk to – just because I am eager
    to have conversations with everybody at TWN. But people like Carroll, WigWag, POA,
    Dan, DonS, Steve, Questions and others here know very well that I`ve been consistent
    on this issue since day one here. And also that I don`t mind having a discussion with
    people I disagree with on important issues.
    A luxury, due to the fact that I live in a peaceful faraway country? Perhaps. But
    even in my very first comments here, two years ago, I wrote about the craziness of
    the Washington elites, contemplating an attack on Iran – four years after the attack
    on Iraq. And also about the importance of distinguishing between the state of Israel
    and Jews as such. Actually, I even said both things on the very same thread. If
    you`re interested, I can provide a link.
    And no, I don`t have children. You`re welcome to use that against me if you can`t
    come up with arguments strong enough to show that I am wrong.

    Reply

  55. Dan Kervick says:

    “Paul: whether Israel attacks Iran is not an academic discussion for me or for much of the rest of the world. It means the lives of the children in my family, as well as countless other people’s lives, will end or be otherwise shattered.”
    Which makes your act all the more tragic – because you couldn’t possibly do more damage to the cause you claim to champion than you do with your endless, ugly, laughably self-defeating and pitiably self-indulgent rants. You make teabaggers look sophisticated.

    Reply

  56. Kathleen Grasso Andersen says:

    michael claussen…xoxoxoxo now back to read nore comments…

    Reply

  57. Outraged American says:

    Paul: whether Israel attacks Iran is not an academic discussion
    for me or for much of the rest of the world. It means the lives of
    the children in my family, as well as countless other people’s
    lives, will end or be otherwise shattered.
    You could find the Friedman article yourself. It was written
    between 2002 and 2004 and was published in the NYT (New
    York Times)
    But it was no revelation to those of us who, after 9/11, became
    aware of the power of the Israel lobby and what it was doing to
    SLAUGHTER what is now more than 1.2 million Iraqis,
    Palestinians, Lebanese, Syrians. Using US tax dollars and US
    blood.
    So should we be politically correct and not talk about the fact
    that the political arm of the Israel lobby is controlled by Jews
    while its voter base is Christian Zionists? Or should we just tell
    the fucking truth before the world is plunged into the War to End
    All Wars? I vote for the latter.
    I have spent the last six years, almost five as a TV and radio
    news producer, interviewing just about every expert I could find,
    including some of the guest commentators on TWN.
    The bottom lines are these:
    * Israel controls US foreign policy in the Middle East.
    * Israel wants an attack on Iran.
    * Israel will get an attack on Iran.
    * US soldiers will be targeted.
    *The draft will be reinstated.
    * Kids in my family, lovely kids with huge potential, two of whom
    are half-Jews, will be drafted, possibly killed, exposed to
    depleted uranium or real radiation, brain damaged, but knowing
    these kids they will all come back mentally scarred.
    And yet you, who have nothing at stake, want to be politically
    correct about who Rupert Murdoch’s mother is? The chutzpah =
    Nadine’s.
    Do you know anything about Judaism? It’s matralineal. If
    Murdoch’s mother were Jewish, he would be Jewish. It does
    explain a lot in terms of Murdoch’s vehement Zionism.
    If you don’t know anything about Judaism, I would suggest you
    read up pronto, because Norway might be drawn into the
    coming World War and if you have any young ones in your family
    you’re attached to, beyond your penguin, you will suffer like I
    and so many billions of people will suffer as we stand over the
    corpses of the children we’ve cherished from birth.
    No one in my family had anything to do with the Jewish
    Holocaust. My ancestors were off in India and Burma either
    raping the natives or being the natives raped.
    Most Americans had nothing to do with the Jewish Holocaust,
    and yet we are going to attack another innocent country for
    Israel.
    Stuff it Paul. Go back to listening to Shostakovich. Whose
    mother was Jewish by the way.

    Reply

  58. Paul Norheim says:

    “Thomas Friedman (…) admitted in a New York Times
    commentary that the neo-cons were almost 100%
    Jews.”
    “I met a woman who knew Murdoch’s mother in
    Australia, she said Murdoch’s mother was Jewish”
    “Mr. Kristol now edits the magazine owned by (…)
    Rupert Murdoch”
    I`m in awe, Outraged, watching your ability to find
    hidden connections. Go on, I think you`we stumbled
    onto something big here.

    Reply

  59. Outraged American says:

    Thomas Friedman, the “liberal interventionist” dirtbag admitted
    in a New York Times commentary that the neo-cons were
    almost 100% Jews.
    They had a few non-Jews, like that fascist Jeanne Kirkpatrick,
    and God knows where Cheney’s ancestors are from beyond an
    alternate universe where mothers eat their children between
    slices of white bread and a dab of catsup and naplam, thrown-
    in to make the entire neo-con manifesto sound less like the
    Protocols.
    Can’t find the original Friedman article but here are some very
    interesting articles on Neo-cons/ the Kristols/ other people who
    should be fed to the pit bull next door at dawn after being
    rubbed down with peanut butter and pigs’ blood.
    I met a woman who knew Murdoch’s mother in Australia, she
    said Murdoch’s mother was Jewish (but Australians lie when they
    open their mouths, they can’t help themselves) so that could
    explain his involvement with La Kosher Nostra:
    The Neocons vs. The Realists
    by Joshua Muravchik and Stephen M. Walt
    http://tinyurl.com/n8l6y4
    President Bush’s Neoconservatives Were Spawned Right Here in
    N.Y.C., New Home of the Right-Wing Gloat
    “It’s a small world,” said William Kristol, editor in chief of The
    Weekly Standard , describing the intertwined world of the
    neoconservatives. And indeed it is, at least to Mr. Kristol: His
    father is the legendary New York intellectual Irving Kristol, who
    is widely considered to be the founder of neoconservatism, and
    Mr. Kristol now edits the magazine owned by the financial
    godfather of the movement, American citizen Rupert Murdoch.
    http://www.observer.com/node/47455

    Reply

  60. Paul Norheim says:

    “…we are all carrying neoconservatism.” (Jack Hammer)
    I think this is true. Kristol is a ghost in Washington DC. And this is more
    important than the rather academic distinction Steve tries to make between the
    original church and later sects and factions of that church. Kristol is a ghost,
    residing not only in the GOP and the media, but also within the White House.

    Reply

  61. Jack Hammer says:

    As the godfather of neoconservatism, Kristol represents only the latest in long long history of old white men who believe they have it figured out for humankind and, until the rest of us get it, are willing to do whatever it takes to impose their ideology on the rest of us for our own good.
    Kristol’s crime, along with a handful of other neocons in powerful positions including his own son, is not in promoting capitalism, but in promoting capitalism at all costs. It isn’t in promoting limited government, it is purposefully debilitating government. It isn’t in promoting privatization, it’s in privatizing every single thing right down to the air we breathe. Neoconservatism is an ideology utterly devoid of the sophistication necessary to support the range of social and economic realities of our world (“power of ideas”, my ass).
    And if the last eight years have told us anything, it’s that no amount of expense, human suffering, or failure will bring an ounce of humility to those that carry this miserable ideology. And with endless political distractions, endless propaganda from the popular media itself, endless ceding of power to corporations, and then equating these things to patriotism, we are all carrying neoconservatism.

    Reply

  62. JohnH says:

    POA–This is probably your answer: “Jews don’t like big military budgets. But it is now an interest of the Jews to have a large and powerful military establishment in the United States… American Jews who care about the survival of the state of Israel have to say, no, we don’t want to cut the military budget, it is important to keep that military budget big, so that we can defend Israel.”
    http://mondoweiss.net/2007/05/30_years_ago_ne.html
    Irving Kristol–Israel First, a pillar of neo conmen “principles.” And then, once you have the big military to defend Israel, you might as well use it, under whatever false pretenses, to “defend” Israel.

    Reply

  63. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “I could be entirely wrong here, but I have suspicions that Irving Kristol and his still living wife, who is brilliant, had some of the same concerns about George W. Bush and about the way the Iraq War was pursued that”
    “the way the Iraq war was pursued”
    In its prewar marketing, or its execution? Its an important distinction, because the only way it could have successfully been marketed was with lies. Did the Kristols think we should have attacked, sans the lies? Thats hardly believable.
    So, we must be talking about its execution, eh? So the lies were OK, we just didn’t kill enough people intially to get the thing over with quickly? Or perhaps they felt we chose the wrong fucking criminal to make the initial attempt to steal the Iraqi people’s assets and resources? Bremer just wasn’t enough a member of the “club” to get the job done? Perhaps the Kristols felt Bolton, Perle, or Feith would have been the better Chief Thief?
    Steve, the statement “had some of the same concerns about George W. Bush and about the way the Iraq War was pursued that Jeanne Kirkpatrick did” is vague and evasive, particularly to those of us that are unfamiliar with whatever “concerns” Kirkpatrick had.
    And, in any case, “concern” about the way the war was “pursued” does not equate to be a moral position, as it does not necessarily equate to regretting the massive propaganda campaign that took this country to war based on LIES. Nor does it imply or express regrets about the million or so Iraqi non-combatant deaths, or the deaths of our servicemen. Or the actual costs of this war on our economy and our global reputation.
    We need a few more neo-con deaths, and if we were what we claim to be, a good many of them should be as the result of standing before a firing squad.

    Reply

  64. PissedOffAmerican says:

    From Bradblog……
    http://www.bradblog.com/?p=7421
    ‘Explosive’ Sibel Edmonds Cover Story at ‘The American Conservative’
    4,000 word exclusive interview with ‘the gagged FBI whistleblower on espionage, al-Qaeda, and secrets for sale’…
    UPDATE 9/18/09 1:15pm PT: Sibel posted the cover over at her site, and I’ve added it above. She also notes that the story is currently online available online to subscribers only until Monday when they’ll release “a major press release” along with the print version out the same day. The story should then be available to all online on Tuesday.
    The cover title: “Who’s Afraid of Sibel Edmonds?: The gagged FBI whistleblower on espionage, al-Qaeda, and secrets for sale”
    In an email she just sent me just now, she notes: “We’ve been getting foreign MSM inquiries; tons. Zilch here; so far…”
    Not much of a surprise by now. After all, what U.S. media would possibly care about members of the U.S. Congress and high-ranking State and Defense Dept. officials taking bribes, being blackmailed, and enabling the theft and sale of U.S. nuclear secrets? Even if the allegations came under sworn and video-taped deposition by a former FBI translator who overheard such things first hand. Non-story, apparently.
    From WRH……..
    http://123realchange.blogspot.com/2009/09/sunlight-foundations-expose-of-turkish.html
    Sunlight Foundation’s Exposé of the Turkish Lobby
    The Joint Turkish-Israeli Lobby Forces
    On September 10 Luke Rosiak of Sunlight Foundation wrote a thorough investigative piece on the Turkish lobby as it relates to the recent developments in the Schmidt v Krikorian case. Here is the best part of this expose:
    “Lobbyists for the government of Turkey, including former congressmen Bob Livingston, made more than 2,260 contacts with officials in an unparalleled push to quash a resolution in Congress that would deem the events genocide.”
    A simple click on the highlighted data will take you to the ‘overt’ working of our nation’s foreign lobbying machine. But allow me to walk you through this clicking:
    The highlighted ‘contact’ will give you a little glimpse of ‘for sale ex-congressmen’ cashing in. Who do we have here specifically?
    Ex Congressman, Former Speaker of the House, Bob Livingston serving his foreign masters with his lobby firm ‘Livingston Group.’ A bit of background here and here.
    A group of ex congressmen, including Dick Gephardt and our many-times exposed scandalous ex Congressman, Former Speaker of the House, Dennis Hastert, with their lobby firm ‘DLA Piper.’ For a bit of background on this see here and here.
    Not much surprise there, right? After all we’ve been paying attention to and covering a bit our Red Light District-turned-Congress. So let’s go to the part that never gets any coverage. You know, the area unanimously blacked out by our media.
    The activated link for 2,260 will take you to the long-withheld ‘overt’ and ‘covert’ partnership and joint operations and lobbying between Turkish players and the Israeli-Jewish lobby. Please click and scan the list of Israeli lobbyists, their chapters, subchapters, distant chapters, hidden chapters…involved with Turkish lobby operations. Impressive list I reckon! Who do we have here:
    AIPAC, JINSA, ADL, B’nai B’rith, JCPA, American Jewish Congress, American Jewish Committee, Jewish Council Public Affairs, Agudath Israel, Hadassah, Ohio Jewish Foundation, Seattle Jewish Leader, United Jewish Communities,… even Jewish Institute for National Security! I knew about the extremely active ominous Israel-Jewish lobby in the US, but I had no idea how many of these organizations, sister organizations, subchapters, hidden chapters… have been set up in the US!
    Next, as I’ve said repeatedly, in many interviews, both overt and covert Turkish lobby and operations in the US were set up by AIPAC/JINSA by the Richard Perle-Douglas Feith duo. Here is their starting point: International Advisors Inc. After they were exposed, they shut it down and started ATC and ATAA, with all the other sister organizations, subchapters, hidden chapters…such as ATA-DC, ATA-Chicago, TACA, TABA…just like their Sister Israeli Lobby.
    You may want to check out a couple of my interviews a few years back on this topic. There is one available on YouTube. An earlier one was during an interview with Scott Horton, which should be available in their archives.
    continues……..

    Reply

  65. Dan Kervick says:

    samuelburke:
    When you quote other people in your posts, you should probably use quotation marks.

    Reply

  66. JohnH says:

    “It is wrong to recklessly denigrate something that really became powerful, even if you disagree with the principles of it.” I suppose Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin and Franco would all appreciate that perspective.
    Of course, maybe they should not be denigrated, because all of them really did get something done. Maybe despised is the proper word.

    Reply

  67. michael claussen says:

    Although nearing the witching hour I am reminded
    that when asked to risk all for a national cause,
    real or imaginary, those of us who have stood to the
    call were just more slaves sent to fill a few
    potholes so Mr. Kristol and his offspring and their
    ilk can sit at home eating figs and contemplate
    their navel. More of the “Noble lies” that intellect
    can spawn and conditioned masses will devour.
    I come here rarely but am never disappointed by the
    sharpness and cleverness. Keep sticking your nose
    out there, Steven. Even when you are too close to
    the forest to see the trees.

    Reply

  68. PissedOffAmerican says:

    My soul is fine, questions.
    But I’d be a bit concerned if I was you. Being a proffessional liar ain’t exactly gonna be an easy ticket through the gates.

    Reply

  69. questions says:

    POA,
    Plato had lots to say about whether you should be more concerned with your potholes or with the state of your soul.
    Clearly you are more concerned with the potholes. That’s fine.

    Reply

  70. ... says:

    “”for an invitation to the kings court or a bag of figs, i could send over a few slaves to fix your pothole””.. i think that’s what plato said….. we might need to get questions to reinterpret this for us though… i suspect a 10,000 word document minimum should do…

    Reply

  71. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Yaaaaaawn.
    What did Plato have to say about the pothole in my cul de sac?

    Reply

  72. questions says:

    I can’t really say how much influence Plato’s Republic had on Kristol, but it has been incredibly influential on a lot of conservative thinking because Plato emphasized the importance of restricting philosophical education to those few elites who can manage to know the highest good without then turning it into the highest evil.
    The conservatives who are drawn to this reading of Platonism seem to feel that they are in fact among the few really amazing people who are capable of coming to know the form of the good.
    What they seem to miss are the following: anyone who wants to rule, for Plato, is already pretty flawed. Anyone who sees himself as one who knows is already a mess. Anyone who thinks he should have power over others for his own good is a tyrant.
    Oh, and Books VIII and IX of the Republic show the inevitable downfall of the entire system. “Inevitable” as in there’s no stopping it and so the whole construct is nuanced in a way that conservatives seem to miss.
    And Book X reminds us that we’re doomed to eat our own children if we don’t live well and learn to choose our lives wisely. “Wisely” as in humbly and carefully and moderately and courageously and with justice.
    Conservatives really miss the point of the Republic. It’s a study in humility, individual limits, conversation, the corruptive influence of wealth and desire, the problems fathers cause for their sons, the problems families cause for their members, the ravages of export economies and bad diet and trade policies, the problems that too much comfort causes, the inadequacy of human knowledge to deal with all the problems we face.
    (Bill Kristol’s infatuation with Sarah Palin is striking in this light.)
    I find it amazing over and over again that conservative intellectuals ever see themselves as worthy of Platonic education.
    The Straussians’ conservative elitism in general tends to pick up Platonic themes and misread them horribly.
    When Plato talks about “noble lies” he is trying to avoid precisely the kind of tyranny that conservatism tends to allow. When Plato talks about the elite, he means people of exceptional military prowess, intellectual ability, the ability to be completely other-directed and to have no ruling desire for pleasure. It doesn’t sound at all like the people who have taken on the mantle of Platonic elitism.
    Very smart is fine. Very smart and self-directed is Plato’s recipe for a tyrant. Very smart, self-directed and at all concerned about wealth is a disaster in the making. All of that plus education and power is the end.

    Reply

  73. ... says:

    steve quote “I have long tried to understand how the neoconservative movement got the strong legs it did.” they were working hand in hand with the military industrial complex steve… no shortage of lobbying money pouring in for these fanatics to have a field day, which is indeed what they had… the beauty of fanaticism is it is never conscious of its own fanaticism until it is over, and even then, i am not so sure… i am reminded of the movie – night of the living dead….
    samuel burke – the washington post is just a front for the israel lobby… if you keep that in mind, it will explain their insane rationale a bit better.. could you imagine a country saying they weren’t going to discuss anything with the usa unless they could discuss abu graib??? these folks have never had to put the shoe on the other foot… they excel at bs and hypocrisy..

    Reply

  74. PissedOffAmerican says:

    I see Obama’s poodles are taking the torture photo issue to the Supreme Court. Two lesser courts have already told him that the photos must be released, but nope, how can this posturing fraud Obama protect the Bush criminals if these photos are released???
    I don’t know a thing about papa Kristol, except how his spawn turned out. Its really quite amazing the damage you can do by declining to use a condom.

    Reply

  75. arthurdecco says:

    “This vignette is important because I think that a number of leading neoconservatives — including Fukuyama and David Frum as well as others like Kenneth Adelman — never really left neoconservatism as much as the modern variant left them.” Steve Clemons
    I know nothing about Kenneth Adelman, but as a Canadian I have followed the slug-slime trail David Frum has left in his wake with avid attention.
    He is an intellectual gnat whose proclamations turn into pumpkins at the first hint of any intelligent criticism.
    Attach any label you like to this despicable liar. It won’t change the fact he has never had anything insightful to offer to the world of ideas beyond his own narrow prejudices backed up with…nothing.
    He’s all about hubris, bigotry and smarmy, oily, intellectual dishonesty.
    He’s not as much a neocon as he is a common dissembler.
    …and Mr. Clemons, spare me. Do you really thing sentient people will ever swallow this line?:
    “With all due respect, Kristol started a major movement — and it was a smart movement.”
    A “smart movement”? A “SMART MOVEMENT”?!?!?
    What’s smart about a movement that deconstructs the United States of America and destroys the intentions of its founders?!?
    Bahhhhh!

    Reply

  76. Dr Subroto Roy says:

    Irving Kristol around 1979-1980 created quite a prescient book, The Crisis in Economic Theory, whose authors included KJ Arrow and (my own professor) FH Hahn, among the most prominent of economic theorists. Not many today seem to know or recall this.
    Suby Roy
    Kolkata, India

    Reply

  77. samuelburke says:

    Glenn Greenwald
    Wednesday Sept. 16, 2009 08:17 EDT
    The Post: U.S. must demand accountability for due process and torture abuses — in Iran
    http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/2009/09/16/delusions/index.html
    I’m asking this sincerely, not rhetorically: is there anything other than extreme self-delusion, grounded in blinding self-regard (i.e., self-decreed exceptionalism), that can explain this? The Washington Post Editorial Page today is demanding that the Obama administration’s negotiations with Iran include not only efforts to curb their nuclear program but also: “at least one other item should be on the agenda: the government’s recent repression of domestic opposition, and in particular its prosecution of Western citizens.” Here’s what they specifically have in mind:

    Reply

  78. samuelburke says:

    hades celebrate the homecoming of one of its own.
    http://www.lewrockwell.com/blog/lewrw/archives/036543.html
    irving Kristol Is Dead at 89
    Posted by Lew Rockwell on September 18, 2009 03:39 PM
    Irving Kristol, whom I once hosted (at George Roche’s request) for a week of lectures at Hillsdale College, was a brilliant Machiavellian. Using his early training as a Trotskyite, and a natural talent for organizing, recruiting, and demagoguery, he managed to take over the Stupid Party, i.e., the conservative movement and the Republicans. Whatever was good, he purged or smeared, in the cause of what he dubbed “neoconservatism”: corporatism, global war, and imperialism, with a special orientation towards Israel. He also influenced the major conservative foundations, and used their resources to great effect. As might be expected, he had a special animus for libertarianism and Ludwig von Mises, whom he denounced to me. As a warmonger and promoter of the police state, he had much blood on his hands, and wanted more. He leaves behind his son Bill, to carry on his work. (Thanks to C.J. Maloney)

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  79. Steve Clemons says:

    Outraged — I understand and empathize with your rage. But the truth be told, I don’t think that Irving Kristol and Gertrude Himmelfarb ever developed a strong personal profile endorsing the wars that their intellectual and real offspring helped hatch. This is in contrast to Norman and John Podhoretz. So, while I recognize your anger at the Kristol name — I just don’t see the high profile of Irving Kristol and his wife on the Iraq War — not to say that he didn’t privately support the war, and maybe even saying something positive publicly. But he could have done much more.
    I could be entirely wrong here, but I have suspicions that Irving Kristol and his still living wife, who is brilliant, had some of the same concerns about George W. Bush and about the way the Iraq War was pursued that Jeanne Kirkpatrick did — and she was ultimately opposed to that war and to where the neoconservative movement had gone.
    I realize that I am offering nuances about someone that gets the hackles up of many — and I knew that when I offered this piece, but it’s too easy to write Irving Kristol off by those on the left. And he needs to be understood, in his complexity.
    all the best — and thanks for putting up with me as well,
    steve clemons

    Reply

  80. Outraged American says:

    CHEAP SHOTS — THE KRISTOLS KILLED PEOPLE WITHOUT FIRING A
    SHOT.The Kristols killed people who other people loved. Millions
    of them. Steve have you ever lost someone you really, really loved
    and would do anything to hear his or her voice again?
    I’m now with your Dad, Old Tree, you need to disengage from some
    of the people you’re surrounding yourself with, you’re losing touch
    with real life.
    I think you’re a very decent man, but war is death and all the
    Kristols spent their lives endorsing war. It so far past.. I don’t
    know…

    Reply

  81. Steve Clemons says:

    With all due respect, Kristol started a major movement — and it was a smart movement. It is wrong to recklessly denigrate something that really became powerful, even if you disagree with the principles of it. I have long tried to understand how the neoconservative movement got the strong legs it did. Years ago, I met Irving Kristol and his wife, Gertrude, and was blown away by their intellectual power and ability to speak abstractly and somewhat distantly from day to day politics. I don’t appreciate the cheap shots above — but folks have their views. But I admire Irving Kristol — though I have worked hard to counter the influence he and his followers have had.
    — Steve Clemons

    Reply

  82. waltermittey says:

    one less creature from the black lagoon.

    Reply

  83. Outraged American says:

    More like “neo-con synagogue”
    “Intellectual” would not describe Irving Kristol, psychopathic
    dickhead would come closer but that would insult psychopathic
    dickheads everywhere.
    And someone (POA?) needs to take the loose screws out of
    Krauthammers wheel chair and head.
    Don’t rest in hell Irving Kristol.

    Reply

  84. Outraged American says:

    More like “neo-con synagogue”
    “Intellectual” would not describe Irving Kristol, psychopathic
    dickhead would come closer but that would insult psychopathic
    dickheads everywhere.
    And someone (POA?) needs to take the loose screws out of
    Krauthammers wheel chair and head.
    Don’t rest in hell Irving Kristol.

    Reply

  85. Outraged American says:

    More like “neo-con synagogue”
    “Intellectual” would not describe Irving Kristol, psychopathic
    dickhead would come closer but that would insult psychopathic
    dickheads everywhere.
    And someone (POA?) needs to take the loose screws out of
    Krauthammers wheel chair and head.
    Don’t rest in hell Irving Kristol.

    Reply

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