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14 December 2007

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FMJ

David,

Here are some things about Strauss and the Straussians you may not know.

1). Strauss was a closet nihilist. He believed that the scientific method was just a historically conditioned way of thinking. For Strauss, scientific truth was only valid insofar as people believed it was valid. The Straussians think we're all a bunch of chumps for thinking evidence and data can describe an objective reality.

2). The Shulsky and Schmitt piece is written in the same esoteric style that Strauss is famous for. Right smack bang in the middle, there's a really big secret.

Strauss hints in his works that esoteric writers (like himself) secretly share the views they are supposedly attacking. Strauss will put his true views in the mouths of his supposed enemies. He never says that his enemies are wrong. The extent of his criticism is that his enemies are inconsistent.

S&S communicate their really big secret in the same way that Strauss does. In LS and the World of Intelligence, notice that S&S never describe the content of Strauss' esoteric method. Instead, they describe what unnamed *critics* say about the method. Notice that S&S never say that the critics are wrong. The extent of their criticism is that Strauss' critics are inconsistent.

If you want to know how neocons analyse intelligence, read what S&S say that Strauss' critcs say about the esoteric method. It's practically a confession.

JohnH

The neoconderthals cannot afford to argue any other way. If they ever revealed their true agenda, people would be aghast and outraged and the neoconderthals would be totally disgraced and banished. So instead of arguing on the facts they create bogeymen, false pretenses, and smear anyone who fails to buy into their make-believe world.

The sad part is that so many believe what they say. So few understand what they are really doing. And so, from their point of view, lying and deception has been an unquestioned success. Their minions have learned well, and future Roves and Wolfowitz will perpetuate the illusion.

Martin K

"A self blinded giant"

That, sir, is as a precise formulation of the US conundrum as I have read anywhere. Compliments. They have almost no quality control, to speak in industrial terms, on their processes.

I have worked in factories for five years, and if you do not have quality and process control running continously on all items with more than five moving parts, things go to hell. Literally, i n the case of melting ovens. The neo-cons are bad engineers.

Tom Griffin

JohnH,

There's an interesting example of the mask slipping in England at the moment.
http://www.tomgriffin.org/the_green_ribbon/2007/12/newsnight-on-th.html

Tom Griffin

FMJ,

Would it be fair to say that the same method could be applied to Roy Godson's book, Dirty Tricks or Trump Cards: US Covert Action and Counterintelligence?

Will

Interesting reading. Brings to mind the following:

THE BOMBER GAP
from the wiki
"Adding to the clamor was an infamous event in July 1955. At the Soviet Aviation Day demonstrations, held at the Tushino Airfield, ten Bison bombers were flown past the reviewing stand.[3] After their flyby they flew out of sight, quickly turned around, and flew past the stands again. They repeated this SIX times, presenting the illusion that there were 60 aircraft. Western analysts extrapolated from the illusionary 60 aircraft, judging that it would take only a short time for the Soviets to produce 600.
"
..
"Over 2,000 B-47s and almost 750 B-52s were built to match the imagined fleet of Soviet aircraft.
"


THE MISSLE GAP:

"The National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) 11-10-57, issued in December 1957, predicted that the Soviets would "probably have a first operational capability with up to 10 prototype ICBMs" at "some time during the period from mid-1958 to mid-1959." After Khrushchev claimed to be producing them "like sausages",[2] the numbers started to inflate. A similar report gathered only a few months later, NIE 11-5-58 released in August 1958, concluded that the USSR had "the technical and industrial capability ... to have an operational capability with 100 ICBMs" some time in 1960, and perhaps 500 ICBMs "some time in 1961, or at the latest in 1962."[1] None of these estimates were based on anything other than guesswork.

Beginning with the collection of photo-intelligence by U-2 overflights of the Soviet Union in 1956, the Eisenhower administration had increasing hard evidence that claims of any strategic weapons favoring the Soviet Union were false. Based on this evidence, the CIA placed the number of ICBMs closer to a dozen. Continued (sporadic) flights failed to turn up any evidence of additional missiles. Curtis LeMay argued that the large stocks of missiles were in the areas not photographed by the U-2's, and arguments broke out over the Soviet factory capability in an effort to estimate their production rate.

It is known today that even the CIA's estimate was too high; the actual number of ICBMs, all interim-use prototypes, was four.[3]

Effects

Later evidence has emerged that one consequence of Kennedy pushing the false idea that America was behind the Soviets in a missile gap was that Soviet premier Nikita Kruschev and senior Soviet military figures began to believe that Kennedy was a dangerous extremist who, with the American military, was seeking to plant the idea of a Soviet first-strike capability to justify a pre-emptive American attack.[citation needed] This belief about Kennedy as a militarist was reinforced in Soviet minds by the Bay of Pigs invasion of 1961 and led to the Soviets placing nuclear missiles in Cuba in 1962.

Warnings and calls to address imbalances between the fighting capabilities of two forces were not new, a "bomber gap" had exercised political concerns a few years previously. What was different about the missile gap was the fear that a distant country could strike without warning from far away with little damage to themselves. "
.....

"A second claim of a missile gap appeared in 1974. Albert Wohlstetter, a professor at the University of Chicago, accused the CIA of systematically underestimating Soviet missile deployment, in his 1974 foreign policy article entitled "Is There a Strategic Arms Race?" Wohlstetter concluded that the United States was allowing the Soviet Union to achieve military superiority by not closing a perceived missile gap. Many conservatives then began a concerted attack on the CIA's annual assessment of the Soviet threat."[6][PIPES?]


from the Grateful Dead
Casey Jones
"Driving the Train, High on Cocaine, Davey Jones Watch Your Speed, Trouble Behind, Trouble Ahead, Trouble with you- trouble with me, two good eyes and can't see."

Charles I

Very penetrating, FMJ.

This is not exactly on point, but certainly illuminates the War, Money & Power Party’s (WMPP) resolve when confronted with reality, opposition, or, absurdity of absurdities, public sentiment.

Jaun Cole today cites Nancy Pelosi’s pathetic plaint at her discovery that many many Republicans still ardently support the war, especially now that we’re “winning”, found here:

http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5ggeAtsS2Wdlv3rvFrvJexIGpvpLAD8TGOEMG0
“Pelosi: Republicans `like' Iraq War
By CHARLES BABINGTON – 23 hours ago
WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi lashed out at Republicans on Thursday, saying they want the Iraq war to drag on and are ignoring the public's priorities.
"They like this war. They want this war to continue," Pelosi, D-Calif., told reporters. She expressed frustration over Republicans' ability to force majority Democrats to yield ground on taxes, spending, energy, war spending and other matters.
"We thought that they shared the view of so many people in our country that we needed a new direction in Iraq," Pelosi said at her weekly news conference in the Capitol. "But the Republicans have made it very clear that this is not just George Bush's war. This is the war of the Republicans in Congress."
Asked to clarify her remarks, Pelosi backed off a bit.
"I shouldn't say they like the war," she said. "They support the war, the course of action that the president is on."
"And that was a revelation to me," she said, "because I thought the American people's voices were so — and still are — so strong in this regard."
Pelosi, who opposed the U.S.-led invasion from the start, said the war was "a catastrophic mistake."
Despite being forced to make concessions on multiple fronts, Pelosi said Democrats have been fiscally responsible and attuned to the public's concerns. As a result, she said, voters will reward Democrats in next year's presidential and congressional elections.
Democrats "set a high water mark" on many bills, she said. "Where we have to come to is a different place," thanks to the "political reality of not having a president of the United States. And nothing speaks more clearly to Democratic victories in the next election than when you see this is what is possible."

In response, House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, said in statement: "Republicans have stood on principle to protect current and future generations of Americans, whether it polled well or not. The success our troops are having in Iraq today is proof positive that our stance was the right one." (!!!!!!!-CI)

Juan goes on to comment:
“I don't doubt that some Republicans like the Iraq War. It after all got a lot of them elected, and has thrown a hefty part of the $500 billion spent on the war so far to their corporate sponsors.

But what really strikes me about the speaker's remarks is her misreading of the Republicans. She appears to have thought that they had mostly turned against the war in their hearts, and would become allies of the Democrats in ending it. In other words, she seems to have blamed Bush for the war and to have assumed that the Republican representatives would now want to run away from Bush.

But for all the Caesar-like power that Bush claims for his imperial executive, he could not have steam-rollered the country into war if he had not had enablers in the then Republican-controlled Congress.

I understand how one gets to be collegial across the aisle in a body like Congress. That might help explain why Pelosi did not initially believe that her Republican colleagues could possibly be so short-sighted or venal as to actively support the war.

But you just have to contrast the way that the Republicans took power in the House in 1994 with a disciplined plan that shifted resources radically to the Right and took no hostages among their foes. They even dared impeach (in the lesser sense) a very popular Democratic president, as a way of making sure Al Gore never became his successor. In other words, they came to town as ravenous as a horde of marauding Mongols and as mean as a canyon full of rattlesnakes.

Pelosi came to power, in contrast, with a namby-pamby pledge not to impeach Cheney or Bush (and she stiffed Dennis Kucinich, who quite rightly wanted at least to pursue the former). She came to power with no apparent plan to strengthen the key Democratic constituencies or throw resources to them.

And now a year after the Dems took the House back for the first time in 12 years, the Democratic Speaker suddenly realizes that she is facing a phalanx of determined warmongers.

Many (not all) Republicans view themselves as benefitting from prolonging the war. As long as it is still going on, they can't be accused of having lost it. As long as it is still going on, they may yet show a skeptical American public, or at least the part of it that funds political campaigns, some benefit. As long as it goes on, they can hope to postpone the catastrophe long enough so that if they do lose the presidency, it will tar that Democratic incumbent and help restrict him or her to a single term.

And she thinks they want to end the war?

You have a sinking feeling that a small band of nice gentle hobbits is facing off against the Orcs of Mordor, without any magic rings or even just ordinary armament, and without any over-arching strategy.” J.C.
Mongols take no prisoners, and are impervious to argument, reasoned or otherwise. They do fight to the death. They take no prisoners( unless they can be put to work for $2 a day for corporate America). One does not argue with them when it is apparent from the fury and success of their attack that they intend no quarter. You stand and fight for what you value, because otherwise it will be razed to the ground, nary a second thought to the horde galloping to its’ next conquest to remake the world into the Mongol way.
Fukyama wrongly foresaw the end of history. What is intended is the discrediting of history(Swift boat, anyone?) for future engagements, and where this is not possible, its permanent sequestration (Presidential records), cynical rewriting(see David H. above, or There were no Arabs here), or outright destruction( 5 million emails, 2 videos and counting, although the count is classified D.E.O.D.E.N – Dickie’s Eyes Only Decider’s Eyes Never.)

Will

in the words of yogi berra, it's deja vu all over again:

"in his 2007 book The Fall of the House of Bush, Vanity Fair contributing editor Craig Unger goes into detail about the formation and inaccuracy of Team B:
“ 1976 is the era of détente, and the neocons hate this; they fear losing their favorite enemy, the Soviet Union. They are saying the CIA is coming up with much too rosy of predictions and they don’t believe the intelligence. Who takes over the CIA at this point? George H.W. Bush. They decide they have to go to battle against him and they form what is known as Team B, which starts an “alternative intelligence assessment.” It effectively says the CIA is all wrong and that we have to redo their intelligence. But Team B’s estimates were completely inaccurate.[36]
"
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Team_B

so who was on team B? Rummy, Wolfie, Pipes. Hard to believe Dumbya threw in his lot with these thugs that shafted Poppy. They even advocated first-strike.

Andy

David,

Excellent commentary and I find very little I can disagree with. I'm very familiar with the Schmitt/Shulsky article and their attack on Kent - not so much with the details on Soviet conventional and nuclear doctrine.

I would add to your list the 1998 Rumsfeld commission on ballistic missiles which really foretold how the Bush administration would treat intelligence.

Still, my principle point you do not address: How best to deal such tactics? My own social science, academic and intelligence training taught me the surest way is to attack their methodology, their assumptions, and their arguments. My feeling is that once one enters into the realm of labeling or name-calling or attacking the messenger instead of the message, then you've lost, lowered your own standards and engaged them on their own terms.

What is a better way to counter their tactics?

ISTM that by choosing not to meet their faulty arguments head-on and instead dismissing them because they are "neocons" then two things happen. First, their arguments gain credibility because they are not refuted. I know this from my personal experience. On right-wing blogs, for example, I've been called everything from a "Democrat" to a "surrender monkey." Stating largely the same thing on left-wing sites gets me "neocon" and "GoP sockpuppet." When someone is forced to "go personal" I know I've "won" the argument because they either cannot or choose not to refute what I say.

Secondly, it's unlikely to convince anyone to adopt your point of view. Moderates (like me) view those tactics as just the other side of a coin and therefore uncompelling.

Finally, I must point out that such tactics are not unique to the neocons and are used by some on the left as well. I hasten to add, however, that the neocons have certainly institutionalized such tactics to a much greater degree than anyone else and they are much more dangerous because of their agenda. Still, take this example from Juan Cole on the NIE:

The new National Intelligence Estimate on Iran says that Iran did have a nuclear weapons research program until early 2003, but then dismantled it.

There is now a high level of confidence that Iran is no longer seeking nuclear weapons.

This finding reverses numerous statements of George W. Bush to the effect that Iran is frantically trying to get a nuke.

So what convinced the US intelligence community that Iran’s weapons program was long ago dismantled?

Juan Cole is a respected academic and his mischaracterization of the NIE is quite a shocking error to make, but it's one that's been picked up by many others and now many believe Mr. Cole's mischaracterization. Were I a partisan, I could attack Mr. Cole for engaging in "BDS" or simply dismiss him as a blind administration critic and dismiss him. Instead, I choose to point out the error and make the case that he is wrong based on the merits.

What I'm suggesting is that the same response is necessary to face the much greater and more dangerous sophism the neocons engage in.

I want to reiterate that biases, agendas and affiliation (neocon or otherwise) should be completely discounted - rather, I believe they should always be secondary and supporting of arguments and counter-arguments made on the merits.

Finally, intelligence, by its very nature, rarely provides enough information to make definitive judgments. Almost always there is ambiguity and often there is a great degree of it. In such circumstances, it is not unexpected for reasonable people to legitimately come to differing conclusions based on the same available evidence. In fact, this happens all the time within the community. It's one reason why social science methodology is so important because human beings of all stripes tend to interpret toward their own preconceptions and biases when faced with ambiguous information. Hence, fervent anti-communists are likely to view Soviet intent through that lens while others will interpret based on their particular biases. One of the things I most admire Sherman Kent for is his founding work in eliminating bias through analytical methodology and tradecraft.

Anyway, before I end I want to link to Kent's Imperative, a blog I discovered recently that seeks to continue Kent's work on the methodological and tradecraft aspects of intelligence. It's not only well written and informative, but it's also refreshingly free of politics.

johnf

Very good thought piece.

Arguing with people like this can be so frustrating - their patent dishonesty, their repeated practice of playing the man, not the ball - that it can often reduce civilized people to impotent rage.

I wonder how much of this came from their protected and indulged position as the "Vulcans" in the seventies and the eighties. They could claim constant Soviet mendacity, invent missile gaps, and claim that nuclear war was winnable. They could create clouds of publicity around themselves, they could strike heroic poses. Why? Because they knew they would never be called on it. Because everyone knew MAD ruled. There wasn't going to be a war, but you could make a hell of a name for yourself in Washington by pretending there could and would be one.

Then, with the end of the Cold War, they didn't have a real and serious opponent anymore. (Though some of them took as long to be persuaded about this as nowadays it is taking to persuade them on NIE). But they were guys who made their living out of being incredibly big and tough. And never being called on it.

So this bunch of blinking academics and dinner party poseurs got to actually start their very own war. And are going to have to spend the rest of their lives and of history getting called on it.

anna missed

It seems that the neo-cons are arguing from a flawed interpretation of William James theory of pragmatism. In that the truth value of an assertion (of fact) lies in its utility or use. Hence, the truth of an Iraqi or Iranian threat lies in the gain from removing it - whether or not it actually ever existed.

W. Patrick Lang

Will

I am interested in your statement that the neocons favored "first strike." ??

You know that the Israelis now appear to favor the same thing. Is this a reflection of neocon thinking? pl

pbrownlee

Given POTUS43's stormy (to put it mildly) relationship with 41 I do not find it at all difficult "to believe Dumbya threw in his lot with these thugs that shafted Poppy".

One of the strongest strings holding up the W-puppet may well have been constant reassurance that (insert particularly dumb action here) will show you are "a better man", tougher etc. than Poppy.

We have all been adrift on a kind of rancid Oedipal soup since January 2001.

Where the Hell is Sophocles when you really need him?

JohnH

Andy--

"How best to deal such tactics? My own social science, academic and intelligence training taught me the surest way is to attack their methodology, their assumptions, and their arguments."

Agreed, the only way to win is to attack their basic premises. Pulling a few well selected strings should make the entire web of deceit unravel.

Unfortunately, most elected officials, aided and abetted by the foreign policy/national security mob, have developed a severe case of group-think, so any attack must deal with virtually the entire Beltway establishment. Their willful gullibility is then conveyed to the general public, which still has this incredible need to believe whatever government leaders say, even when they are known, notorious liars.

Babak Makkinejad

Will:

Bertrand Russel, in his book "Unarmed Victories" substantially agrees with the perceptions of the Nikita Kruschev vis a vis JKF. He attributes the continued existence of the human race past the Cuban Missile Crisis to the sanity of one man and one man alone - Nikita Kruschev.

jonst

Andy,

One should argue with neocons and call them names. Expose them, ruthlessly, to ridicule wherever, and whenever, possible. One should, as well, vigorously, but politely, challenge their methodology, assumptions and their arguments. One should see that candidates that reject the neocons come to power and understand why their supporters put them in power. In short...like any war, and this is a war for America's soul, fought against dishonorable men, in many cases, numerous types of tactics and strategies must be on the table for consideration and use, often at the same time.

Tom Griffin

"How best to deal such tactics? My own social science, academic and intelligence training taught me the surest way is to attack their methodology, their assumptions, and their arguments."

Interestingly, the BBC is in the middle of doing exactly that:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/theeditors/2007/12/disastrous__misjudgement.html

Will

Team B was headed by Zioncons. Israel has always been a first strike opportunistic state, because of the land hunger- never considered itself bound by the UN charter rules about the inadmissibility of waging aggressive war to gain territory and plant settlements. 1956 Sinia land grab. Eisenhower said get out. But then again in 1967 but bigger and better w/ LBJ collusion.

more interesting reading
Poppy became the head spook but Darth Vader who was WH chief of staff and Rummy watered his power down with a Team B review

wiki/Halloween_Massacre


"First, Donald Rumsfeld and Richard Cheney manipulated their appointments to advance their own agendas within the American political arena. Or, secondly, Rumsfeld and Cheney convinced Ford to make these changes in order to improve his re-election prospects against his primary Republican opponent, Ronald Reagan.[2] "

Sidney O. Smith III

A few months ago, I critiqued Habakkuk’s essay on “Leo Strauss and the World of Intelligence”. It was my attempt to determine the esoteric “secret” of the Straussians. Here is part of the critique…with a last sentence update.

Habakkuk appears to propose that, under the neoconservative worldview, US strategic intel analysis no longer follows the Anglo-American tradition that arose after World War II under the direction of Sherman Kent. Under Kent, US strategic intelligence analysis relied primarily upon gathering and analyzing facts based upon the methodology of the social sciences, while at the same time recognizing that potential adversaries will engage in deception. The neoconservatives jettisoned this approach and, instead, now make analytical conclusions that simply "take off from the wish”. Neoconservatives cloak this process as “intuition” based on the assumption that a potential, or perhaps desired, adversary is always engaged in deception, so one therefore must go beyond the facts to determine intent.

However -- as Stephen Hadley recently proved by his decision to block intel analysts from access to vital information on the IDF attack on a Syrian site-- the neoconservative idea of intuition is completely decoupled from any process of determining reality. In fact, Hadley just corroborated and repeated the pattern we saw during the buildup to the Iraq invasion of March, 2003. Neoconservatives will ignore the facts and analysis, manufacture propaganda and even take affirmative steps to conceal information from analysis by the US intelligence community. So their approach is not intuition at all but creating illusions based upon desires.

As Habakkuk points out, the result of the neoconservative approach is that Hitler is projected onto the world at large. He writes:

“I stress this, because a characteristic of the neocon approach is that wherever we are, we are back in 1938. Every threat ends up being, in one form or other, Hitler reincarnated. It is difficult to be clear here how far one is dealing with genuine misperception, and how far with manipulative rhetoric.”

Then Habakkuk makes an absolutely riveting revelation -- one that perhaps suggests that the neoconservatives, by relying on a methodology of deception themselves -- are in fact defining their own persona and intent when they publicly attack their adversary of the moment, be it a person or a group. In other words, if you want to determine the character and intent of those hiding behind the mask of neo-conservatism and the Straussian noble lie, then listen to the nature of their ad hominem attacks as if it is a form of self-identification. Habakkuk suggests this point in the conclusion of his essay, where he writes that the two twentieth century regimes that systematically practiced the neoconservative version of strategic intel -- taking off from the wish -- were those of Hitler and Stalin and they, to use his words, “do not represent encouraging models”.

Not encouraging indeed. And what does Habakkuk think of New York Times journalist David Brooks? He writes:

"I must admit that confronted by David Brooks, I am indeed tempted to remark that the degree of his faith in intuition has Hitlerian echoes, and also that, as was the case with Hitler, it is likely materially to hamper the prospects of United States both in avoiding conflicts that are avoidable and in prevailing in conflicts that are not."

So, by incorporating Habakkuk’s conclusions, the question becomes this: what is the shameless strategic neoconservative wish we now confront in the autumn of 2007? To answer that question I suggest first taking a look at David Wurmser and the Wurmser option.

And…as a December 07 update to the above partical critique…check out this PBS debate on you tube between Zakaria Fareed and the imperial wizard himself -- Norman Podhoretz. It appears to prove the Habakkuk thesis.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I-0E6ka8k54&eurl=http://tonykaron.com/2007/10/31/give-fareed-zakaria-a-medal/

jayinbmore

As a spoiled British child of the post-war Pax Americana, what staggers me about so many of the neocons is their patently inability to grasp that American success in the Cold War was in very substantial measure due quite precisely to the fact that your country did not behave as the Soviets did. Why then this sudden enthusiasm for Soviet-style thuggery?

Ever since the PNAC released it's http://www.newamericancentury.org/statementofprinciples.htm> statement of principles I have wondered the same thing. When I read it in 1998 or 1999 (can't exactly remember), I thought it was odd that a group claiming to be conservative would say something so reminiscent of Trotsky.

The explanation may be along the following lines. I think the problem is that they failed to recognize the danger inherent in a revolutionary/visionary mindset - a mindset of which that statement of principles is indicative. I'm no social scientist, but it seems to me that if there's a lesson to be drawn from revolutions past, especially the Soviet one, it's that insisting your ideological vision is the "silver bullet" is only going to lead to ruin. Reality is always there to wreak havoc on your program (mug you?) and since you can't admit your ideology is at fault, you have to purge the, uhm, counter-revolutionaries. It's this intellectual trap that the Neocons walked into, protestations of being "mugged by reality" to the contrary.

DH

Will:

"Israel has always been a first strike opportunistic state, because of the land hunger- never considered itself bound by the UN charter rules about the inadmissibility of waging aggressive war to gain territory and plant settlements. 1956 Sinia land grab. Eisenhower said get out. But then again in 1967 but bigger and better w/ LBJ collusion."

From the 'A Lot of Nothing at Annapolis' post http://turcopolier.typepad.com/sic_semper_tyrannis/2007/11/a-lot-of-nothin.html#comments :

"Ben Gurion's Israel had its eye on the West Bank on the gitgo and cooked up the 67 war to capture it, has colonized it & settled up to the gills, and is scarcely going to let go of any substanial parts of it."

Will you please elaborate on what Israel did to cook up the '67 war?

Babak Makkinejad

Sidney O Smith:

"Intuition", properly understood, is understanding gleaned from many prior experiences. I doubt many people have lived the requisite number of life-times that which could enable them to develop "intuition" in international relations.

I also think the resurrection of Hitler & Munich, just like the resurrection of the Shoah, is a form of propaganda - it is a deliberate emotional appeal to the semi-religion that Shoah has become in the West.

However, I think this is all epi-phenomena. The phenomena itself is the belief in the Western leaders and their polities that they are better (in moral sense) from other people in the world and that the asymmetry of power between their polities and the rest of mankind makes them un-touchable.

In other words, the neo-conservatives are only appealing to that part of the Western psyche that considers herself to be superior to the rest of mankind and ready to beat those benighted people into line.

Of course, like everything else, all of this boils down to the Fall of Man - no doubt.

Andy

Sidney,

Stephen Hadley recently proved by his decision to block intel analysts from access to vital information on the IDF attack on a Syrian site

I had not heard that - can you provide any details and/or sourcing?

SubKommander Dred


Andy;
Your assertions that the Neoconfederacy of Dunces currently running our country into the ground should have their arguments countered with reasonable, measured dialogue disproving their worldview falls on deaf ears in regards to myself. To wit; all of these guys have lied for so long and caused so much suffering, heartache and bloodshed in the world that I'd just as soon kick 'em in the teeth as rebut any argument they have to make about Iran.
The fact that Iran is a theocratic, undemocratic quasi police state that is run by the Persian equivilant of the "Moral Majority" can't be disputed. 'Res Ispa Loquitor,' as the toadies in the legal profession would say. But that doesn't get Cheney, Fieth, Rice, Wolfowitz or any other those rat bastard neocon pricks off the hook for lying us into this awful war in Iraq, and trying like hell to start another in Iran. Not enough evidence? Why, forge it! Don't like the intell your own agencies are telling you? Why, just start another one, that is absolutely certain to give you the info you know is right (Office of Special Plans, anyone?) Trying to terrorize your own citizens into a war? Just send out the DC goon squad to hit the Sunday Talking Head shows until it's "Smoking guns and Mushroom Clouds" morning, noon and night.
Your assertion that the likes of Henry Kissinger or John Bolten are making some sort of reasonable argument for taking action against Iran is, for me anyway, kind of like listening to John Wayne Gacey talk about the great insulating quality of dead bodies jammed into the crawlspace the his house, or Jeffrey Dahmer extolling the great health effects of his 'special' dietary preferences. Oh, and Kissinger...wasn't he the one that said (after we had screwed the Kurds the FIRST time back when they were engaged in a guerilla campagn against...wait for it...Saddam Hussien...for the then Shah of Iran's geopolitical aspirations in the region) "Diplomacy is not missionary work." (or something very close to that). In short, Andy, these guys have about as much credibility with me as Wile E Coyote, Super Genious, and his corporate masters at The Acme Corporation. Alas, the only person Wile E Coyote, Super Genius ever hurt was himself, typically by his own hand in pursuit of some half assed plan that, in retrospect, appears to have all the earmarks of something the likes of Fred Kagan would cook up in his office, deep in the bowels of the AEI.
SubKommander Dred

socialman

The difficulty of comprehending the straussians is the result of a deliberate ploy. machiavelli was the original source but Strauss was not prepared to let political commonsense be open-sourced. Strauss created, in effect, a closed guild based on "hidden truths" to guarantee his financial/social longevity. Arguing with Straussian was akin to attacking his meal wagon since he was a transplant. His students became acolytes blind to the master's faults.

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