Sunday, July 8, 2007

The Fate of the World as a Mere Intellectual Exercise

William Kristol and Louis Rene Beres are professional intellectuals. Think-tank guys. Pundits. Gamblers with other people's money (or lives or futures or survival). Fearless and outspoken, as long as it's from behind a desk and their own skins are not at risk.

Billkristol William Kristol and Louis Rene Beres are professional intellectuals. Think-tank guys. Pundits. Gamblers with other people's money (or lives or futures or survival). Fearless and outspoken, as long as it's from behind a desk and their own skins are not at risk.
Not that there’s anything wrong with that. We are certainly short on intellectual input and long on gut as America makes its largely disastrous entry into the 21st century.
Louisreneberes The difficulty with guys like Kristol and Beres is that they are more incarnations of Ann Coulter than Bill Buckley, more loose-horse than midnight rider, far more interested in a world of personal power and military confrontation than one of solid old diplomacy. Diplomacy, that currently out-of-style substitute for war, has three common definitions,
1) Negotiation between nations,
2) Subtle and skillful handling of a situation and
3) Wisdom in the management of public affairs.
Pnacmembers That’s not quick enough for these fast-draw pundits. Each fancies himself a solver of international problems by applying other people’s children in force of arms. Each posits solutions from the comfort of a desk, either at a university (Kristol at Harvard; Beres at Purdue) or a think-tank. Wild Bill Kristol is a founder of the Project For the New American Century (PNAC) and Beres a board-member of the Freeman Center for Strategic Studies (nothing to do with this Freeman).
Democracywar War, which is sometimes defined as the ultimate failure of diplomacy, doesn’t even wait for diplomacy with those who elect themselves to control public dialog. They have elevated it, turned it  into (with Dick Cheney's approval) the George Bush preference for preemptive attack against those who argue with American or Israeli policy.
The Bush Doctrine.
Kristol and PNAC were prime movers behind the disastrous Iraq policy and Beres continually pimps for a preemptive attack on Iran, hailing it as the solution to Israel’s perceived annihilation.
Soldiercoffins We are up to our eyeballs in Iraq and regretting every moment, with nearly 3,600 and counting American dead, having stirred up a veritable hornet’s nest in the Middle East and the larger world of Muslim radicals. Kristol was a leading voice, daring and misleading us into a death-trap for which the best minds in America have no working solution.
If Kristol ran an American corporation the way he runs his mouth, he’d have been fired for incompetence years ago. But this is an administration that  prizes incompetence.
In a Statement of Principles undersigned by the likes of Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and Paul Wolfowitz (and after a long diatribe about lost American greatness), Kristol's PNAC, on its web site, states;
Our aim is to remind Americans of these lessons and to draw their consequences for today. Here are four consequences:
  • we need to increase defense spending significantly if we are to carry out our global responsibilities today and modernize our armed forces for the future;
  • we need to strengthen our ties to democratic allies and to challenge regimes hostile to our interests and value;
  • we need to promote the cause of political and economic freedom abroad;
  • we need to accept responsibility for America's unique role in preserving and extending an international order friendly to our security, our prosperity, and our principles.
Such a Reaganite policy of military strength and moral clarity may not be fashionable today. But it is necessary if the United States is to build on the successes of this past century and to ensure our security and our greatness in the next.
Worked pretty well, didn’t it, Bill? Your (and PNAC’s) aims have thus far
  • broken our military,
  • resulted in unprecedented fraud and theft,
  • made a revolving door of general officers,
  • destroyed our relationship with allies,
  • wrecked the cause of political and economic freedoms in the world,
  • turned us away from America’s centuries-long commitment to international order and
  • deeply compromised our security, prosperity and future as a world leader.
  • destroyed a Republican presidency
· T That’s quite a record for a self-described pundit, oracle and savior of the nation.
Looselipssinkships The liability does not stop there. Just as, once upon a time 'loose lips sank ships,' the subversive power of an unprecedented explosion of think-tank punditry threatens the Executive ability to govern.
Currently rumbling around in the press, denied by Secretary of State Rice and attributed by those who speak only on denial of attribution, is the threat of a Cheney-supported move to mount preemptive strikes against Iran. Cheney’s presumably diminished power is not to be ignored.
There are no indications from the president that Cheney is in any way less powerful than he has been throughout this administration.
It would not be necessary for America to directly attack Iran to achieve the Cheney-Kristol-Beres goal. The United States has a mutual defense agreement with Israel that would presumptively commit us to backing an Israeli strike against Iran. Cheney has been rumored to support such a role for Israel, sucking us, unwittingly, into a setup of his own promotion.
Israellebanon Israel might think twice after their disastrous invasion of Lebanon--the much more brief equivalent of our Iraq experience.
Enter Louis Rene Beres, the 'dragon of Purdue University' and Chairman of a warmongering Israeli organization named Project Daniel, that reported directly to the then Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon. A quote or two from Beres would not be amiss;
We must act very quickly on Iran. Many critics will argue that the expected consequences of any prompt preemptive strike would be overwhelming, including greatly expanded terror attacks against assorted Western targets, and perhaps regional or even global war. Although such dire prospects should not be dismissed, there is certainly no reason to believe that an American or Israeli preemption would make them more likely.
No reason to believe, Louis? Let me advise you about something that you and Bill Kristol, both of you Jews and both of you deep into Israeli intrigues, may have failed to notice.
Non-Jewish America was not amused by the Lebanon gambit (nor, presumably, was Israel). They are bone-tired of Israelis and Palestinians shitting all over 25 years of American mediation, they are overwhelmingly unsupportive of the present Iraqi debacle and unlikely by even a trifling percentage to back a U.S. military adventure against Iran.
Against the denied background of those truths, the best you can muster is
The "doomsday clock" continues its advance to "midnight." Existential atomic danger is most immediate to Israel. Iran poses the greatest problem.
In the United Nations, both crime and folly remain the official order of the day . . . it is plain that the world of diplomacy and international statecraft is now a relentlessly preposterous world . . . as everywhere a dizzying unreason triumphs boldly over both rational thought and palpable compassion . . . should it face the prospect of a nuclear Iran, or even of any Arab state or movement with nuclear or even certain biological weapons, Israel would likely have no rational choice but to act preemptively.
This, from a man who, like Bill Kristol, has the ear of the vice-president of the United States and the Prime Minister of Israel. A dispassionate intellectual, a morbidly focused Jew, a professor and think-tank dreamer of partisan dreams, Beres would have America bear any burden, pay any price to march against his perceived enemy.
Jewishpress The dizzying unreason that triumphs boldly over both rational thought and palpable compassion, comes directly from the  vicious half-truths you and Kristol have extolled in The Jewish Press and Weeklystandard The Weekly Standard. You each have blood on your hands and not a single personal asset at stake. Americans have already borne too many burdens and paid way too large a price for carrying your and Bill Kristol’s water.
Those who see the 21st century in terms of American dominance have entirely missed the point of what this country stands for. Rummy and his Star Wars, Wolfowitz and Kristol with their regime change, Cheney and the president with their preemptive war have been exposed as the voices of fools.
We are not yet a nation of fools. Nor will we be again led there by partisan intellectuals who deal away our strengths as a nation for their own warped perceptions.
I hope.
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