Comments: The Neoconservative Perspective on Iran

I don't know if you're the only person who has read "Strategy for a Nuclear Iran" or not, but I know for sure I've read Chomsky making the exact same point in the exact same terms, so, perhaps he's read it....

Posted by Rojo at July 14, 2010 05:49 AM

To be clear, I mean the point about the problem with Iranian nuclear weapons being more about deterrence than aggression in the view of our elites.

The point about the elites (I would extend it far beyond the neoconservatives) lying to the rabble with nonsensical arguments because they don't want their real views to be clear to the public....

Well, that's just standard statecraft.

Posted by Rojo at July 14, 2010 05:53 AM

Yes, Chomsky's made this point about Iran, just as he's been making it for a long time now in other contexts as well:

It was also understood throughout that the aging MiGs that Nicaragua was accused of trying to sneak into its territory could have only one purpose: to protect Nicaraguan airspace from the CIA supply flights that were required to keep the U.S. proxy forces in the field and the regular surveillance flights that provide them with up-to-the-minute information on the disposition of Nicaraguan troops, so that they can safely attack civilian targets in accordance with their instructions and training. Understood, but scarcely mentioned. A search of the liberal Boston Globe, perhaps the least antagonistic to the Sandinistas among major U.S. journals, revealed one editorial reference to the fact that Nicaragua needs air power "to repel attacks by the CIA-run contras, and to stop or deter supply flights" (Nov. 9, 1986). Again, the conclusion is clear and unmistakeable: no one has the right of self-defense against U.S. attack.
Posted by John Caruso at July 14, 2010 12:10 PM

That Donnelly paper is one thoroughly researched piece of fist shaking.

17 Footnotes.
Including: some of Max Boot's best chest thumping, a half-dozen passages excerpted from the famed foreign policy comedy duo of Gates & Brzezinski, two speculative NY Times articles, The Science Fiction best-seller on the 9/11 Commission and, lastly, a state department document from the Bush Era on "The Lessons of Terrorism."

Is it too simplistic to suggest that if you own a computer, have a bad haircut and believe passionately in blowing up lots and lots of brown and black people, there is a six-figure annual paycheck waiting for you from AEI.

Posted by bayville at July 14, 2010 02:08 PM

The success of democracy in Afghanistan and Iraq not only will surround Iran strategically, but ideologically as well. In the final analysis, supporting and expanding the forces of freedom in the region offers, for now, our best hope for containing Iran and diluting the value of its nuclear deterrent.

One can argue Donnelly's conclusion has produced the opposite result (surprisingly) envisioned by the batallion of armchair Neocon warriors.

Posted by bayville at July 14, 2010 02:44 PM

Here's Irving Kristol one-upping Dean Acheson:

"There are different kinds of truths for different kinds of people,” Kristol once wrote. “There are truths appropriate for children; truths that are appropriate for students; truths that are appropriate for educated adults; and truths that are appropriate for highly educated adults, and the notion that there should be one set of truths available to everyone is a modern democratic fallacy. It doesn't work."

http://open.salon.com/blog/judy_mandelbaum/2009/09/19/mugged_by_reality_on_the_death_of_irving_kristol

I think there's a zero percent chance that Chomsky hasn't read the Strategy for a Nuclear Iran.

Of course keeping Iran from getting nukes is really about power. Controlling the Gulf and in fact all of Central Asia would be trickier if we couldn't so cavalierly threaten to obliterate Iran, as apparently we did in 2003 when there was some rumor of a terrorist threat

Note as to consistency: The United States has opposed nuclear non-proliferation in nearby Central Asia:

http://www.thebulletin.org/web-edition/features/the-struggle-a-nuclear-weapon-free-zone-central-asia

But last year it finally happened anyway despite US criticism/opposition.

http://cns.miis.edu/stories/081201_canwfz.htm

And, of course, on the subject of consistency, there's Israel and The Sampson Option. Heaven forbid other countries get to ensure their non-annihilation.

Posted by N E at July 14, 2010 02:55 PM

This point is made relatively often; I think I read a similar argument in Foreign Affairs sometime last year.

I'm more interested by this sentence:

But in the greater Middle East of the twenty-first century, we are the truly revolutionary force and 'revolutionary' Iran is more the status quo power...

I think I often fail to understand the way many neo-conservatives perceive themselves. Wolfowitz, Rumsfeld, and these days McChrystal and Petraeus, think of themselves as new and different sorts of imperialists. All imperialists have imagined they're improving the lot of those they conquer, but did they used to imagine themselves as liberators, as equalizers?

Posted by saurabh at July 14, 2010 04:57 PM

Saurabh

It's too bad Lewis Hanke isn't around to answer that question for you, but I highly recommend his books on 16th century Spain and Bartolome de las Casas. You'll see from him that different imperialists have had different views about your question even during the same period, and I think the variety across time periods is a lot greater. The one commonality is that there seems to be a lot of self-admiration among most imperialists and a sense of superiority over the imperialized. (Though not really from de las Casas, who wasn't by any means some idealistic marginal figure.)

Given the excerpt of Irving Kristol above in my comment, it's no wonder you get confused about what the neocons really think. They openly admit that they lie about that, and we're not in the inner circle of truth or tickets to the secret meetings and parties. But I gather they think of themselves as "revolutionary" in the same sort of macho, bloodthirsty way the Nazis did, just a little less so. I also think their opponents at Langley and in Europe and even on Wall Street saw a little of that parallel too and didn't/don't believe the US can run the whole world in that fashion any more than the Nazis could. The Langley faction prefers more multilateralism and the attendant coordination with our most economically important allies, the EU and Japan.

By the way, not ALL imperialists have pretended to want to improve the lot of those they imperialized. Neither the Japanese nor the Nazis pretended to do that much. They didn't buy into that rhetoric about "the white man's burden." They were more about what they were entitled to, hadn't received, and intended to take even if they had to kill everybody.

Posted by N E at July 14, 2010 08:48 PM

Ah, The White Man's Burden---An empty pocket and a loaded pistol.

Posted by Mike Meyer at July 15, 2010 02:35 AM

I understand that the Japanese had their own system of racial superiority for the Far East, and it went Japanese > Koreans > Manchus > Chinese. Thus they were liberating the Koreans and the Manchus from the Chinese.

Probably in every empire in history, every possible justification has been invoked. Different folk's consciences take different arguments to be neutralized, so you always need them all.

Posted by Cloud at July 15, 2010 02:46 PM

I understand that the Japanese had their own system of racial superiority for the Far East, and it went Japanese > Koreans > Manchus > Chinese. Thus they were liberating the Koreans and the Manchus from the Chinese.

I suggest you read "War Without Mercy: Race and Power in the Pacific War" by John Dower. It covers what you mention above in great detail. It is a terrific book that also looks at US racism towards the Japanese which was extreme and at times beyond belief.-Tony

Posted by tony at July 15, 2010 06:38 PM

Tony is right, that is a good book. As I recall it mentions early on among other examples of American racism an idea by FDR to cross-breed the Japanese with some Pacific Islanders to make them less warlike. I hope FDR had tossed back a few before that occurred to him.

Posted by N E at July 15, 2010 07:41 PM



JOURNALISM IS A FARCE

It seems like the best time to have some real investigative reporting on the private security firms
and no bid contracts in Iraq, Pakistan, and
Afganistan.

Blackwater (XE), who owns them, how they are
trained by Mossad agents, the advanced military
equipment, how much made and developed in Israel.

The false information to go to war, how these
private companies pay $165,000 to each security
guard.

How they have given our military a HUGE black eye internationally; by the murderous attacks on
civilians, and the criminal activities of most of
them, not just isolated incidents.

How much of our militarys information is passed on to private enterprise for them to capitalize on
for the benefit of corporate owners.

Just who have our sons and daughters been dying for,

WE RECOGNIZE THE TEA PARTY AS A WING
OF THE GOP. THE FEAR TACTICS, RACISM, ZIONISM, CORPORATE CRIME BOSSES, AND
FOREIGN ISRAELI LOBBIES.






DID ANYONE NOTICE?
Super sonic speed on this one:


DID ANYONE NOTICE?

Super sonic speed on this one:

Russia, Israel, and AIPAC sure got their 10 Russian Jewish spies out of the USA at amazing speed.

We never have witnessed Espionage cases resolved so fast .

To bad government can’t work so efficient on American issues.

Look up highfive4all

GOP - DNC : SYNONYMS


THE FIX IS IN

We certainly need a third party, a party
that will actually represent the American
people. A government for and by the people.

UNITED LABOR PARTY !!

GOP "TRANSPARENCY"
Shaping the Party’s Agenda

GOP “Transparency” Means an Open Meeting with Lobbyists Who Will Shape the Party’s Agenda. Just how many foreigners that will be is yet undetermined. You can be sure AIPAC and associates will be well accounted for in the midst of their continued agenda. Of course we will hear and read all about it from their MEDIA.

Corruption still strong at Party Leadership.



UN agency says apartheid wall is illegal:


USA FOREIGN POLICIES


GO TO: http://highfive4all.com




A DAY FOR CHANGE
Agree with today being the DAY.

A DAY FOR CHANGE

Make these the days where you do something for Americans, for the earth, for someone you don't know... put your heart into it. Step out of your comfort zone, just a little bit at a time. Who knows what changes you'll cause to happen? At this very moment we are waiting patiently for change to begin. How much longer do we wait to start demanding the promises made?? Tomorrow?? When?? I would agree with today. RLW

The Sun is coming up in the East, a new day is born, but yesterday will not be forgotten by its victims.

Ron Wal

Where to start: 1. "Oppose $33 Billion War supplemental" 2. " Oppose the foreign lobby AIPAC and their influence on congress. 3. Do not vote for any duel citizenship candidate,it constitutes conflict of interest. 4. Study and consider third party candidates. How about a United Labor Party, stop the out sourcing and unfair trade agreements.


Posted by: Ron Wal

Tell your Senators not to continue shortchanging the American people as they have been doing for the last 60 years. Tell them to separate their religious falsehoods from the peoples government business.
Zionism is the worst problem we face in America.

Read the book: TRUTH COUNTS--Don't count on getting it. by Ronald L. Waldron

Posted by Ronald L. Waldron at July 19, 2010 08:00 PM



JOURNALISM IS A FARCE

It seems like the best time to have some real investigative reporting on the private security firms
and no bid contracts in Iraq, Pakistan, and
Afganistan.

Blackwater (XE), who owns them, how they are
trained by Mossad agents, the advanced military
equipment, how much made and developed in Israel.

The false information to go to war, how these
private companies pay $165,000 to each security
guard.

How they have given our military a HUGE black eye internationally; by the murderous attacks on
civilians, and the criminal activities of most of
them, not just isolated incidents.

How much of our militarys information is passed on to private enterprise for them to capitalize on
for the benefit of corporate owners.

Just who have our sons and daughters been dying for,

WE RECOGNIZE THE TEA PARTY AS A WING
OF THE GOP. THE FEAR TACTICS, RACISM, ZIONISM, CORPORATE CRIME BOSSES, AND
FOREIGN ISRAELI LOBBIES.






DID ANYONE NOTICE?
Super sonic speed on this one:


DID ANYONE NOTICE?

Super sonic speed on this one:

Russia, Israel, and AIPAC sure got their 10 Russian Jewish spies out of the USA at amazing speed.

We never have witnessed Espionage cases resolved so fast .

To bad government can’t work so efficient on American issues.

Look up highfive4all

GOP - DNC : SYNONYMS


THE FIX IS IN

We certainly need a third party, a party
that will actually represent the American
people. A government for and by the people.

UNITED LABOR PARTY !!

GOP "TRANSPARENCY"
Shaping the Party’s Agenda

GOP “Transparency” Means an Open Meeting with Lobbyists Who Will Shape the Party’s Agenda. Just how many foreigners that will be is yet undetermined. You can be sure AIPAC and associates will be well accounted for in the midst of their continued agenda. Of course we will hear and read all about it from their MEDIA.

Corruption still strong at Party Leadership.



UN agency says apartheid wall is illegal:


USA FOREIGN POLICIES


GO TO: http://highfive4all.com




A DAY FOR CHANGE
Agree with today being the DAY.

A DAY FOR CHANGE

Make these the days where you do something for Americans, for the earth, for someone you don't know... put your heart into it. Step out of your comfort zone, just a little bit at a time. Who knows what changes you'll cause to happen? At this very moment we are waiting patiently for change to begin. How much longer do we wait to start demanding the promises made?? Tomorrow?? When?? I would agree with today. RLW

The Sun is coming up in the East, a new day is born, but yesterday will not be forgotten by its victims.

Ron Wal

Where to start: 1. "Oppose $33 Billion War supplemental" 2. " Oppose the foreign lobby AIPAC and their influence on congress. 3. Do not vote for any duel citizenship candidate,it constitutes conflict of interest. 4. Study and consider third party candidates. How about a United Labor Party, stop the out sourcing and unfair trade agreements.


Posted by: Ron Wal

Tell your Senators not to continue shortchanging the American people as they have been doing for the last 60 years. Tell them to separate their religious falsehoods from the peoples government business.
Zionism is the worst problem we face in America.

Read the book: TRUTH COUNTS--Don't count on getting it. by Ronald L. Waldron

Posted by Ronald L. Waldron at July 19, 2010 08:00 PM



JOURNALISM IS A FARCE

It seems like the best time to have some real investigative reporting on the private security firms
and no bid contracts in Iraq, Pakistan, and
Afganistan.

Blackwater (XE), who owns them, how they are
trained by Mossad agents, the advanced military
equipment, how much made and developed in Israel.

The false information to go to war, how these
private companies pay $165,000 to each security
guard.

How they have given our military a HUGE black eye internationally; by the murderous attacks on
civilians, and the criminal activities of most of
them, not just isolated incidents.

How much of our militarys information is passed on to private enterprise for them to capitalize on
for the benefit of corporate owners.

Just who have our sons and daughters been dying for,

WE RECOGNIZE THE TEA PARTY AS A WING
OF THE GOP. THE FEAR TACTICS, RACISM, ZIONISM, CORPORATE CRIME BOSSES, AND
FOREIGN ISRAELI LOBBIES.






DID ANYONE NOTICE?
Super sonic speed on this one:


DID ANYONE NOTICE?

Super sonic speed on this one:

Russia, Israel, and AIPAC sure got their 10 Russian Jewish spies out of the USA at amazing speed.

We never have witnessed Espionage cases resolved so fast .

To bad government can’t work so efficient on American issues.

Look up highfive4all

GOP - DNC : SYNONYMS


THE FIX IS IN

We certainly need a third party, a party
that will actually represent the American
people. A government for and by the people.

UNITED LABOR PARTY !!

GOP "TRANSPARENCY"
Shaping the Party’s Agenda

GOP “Transparency” Means an Open Meeting with Lobbyists Who Will Shape the Party’s Agenda. Just how many foreigners that will be is yet undetermined. You can be sure AIPAC and associates will be well accounted for in the midst of their continued agenda. Of course we will hear and read all about it from their MEDIA.

Corruption still strong at Party Leadership.



UN agency says apartheid wall is illegal:


USA FOREIGN POLICIES


GO TO: http://highfive4all.com




A DAY FOR CHANGE
Agree with today being the DAY.

A DAY FOR CHANGE

Make these the days where you do something for Americans, for the earth, for someone you don't know... put your heart into it. Step out of your comfort zone, just a little bit at a time. Who knows what changes you'll cause to happen? At this very moment we are waiting patiently for change to begin. How much longer do we wait to start demanding the promises made?? Tomorrow?? When?? I would agree with today. RLW

The Sun is coming up in the East, a new day is born, but yesterday will not be forgotten by its victims.

Ron Wal

Where to start: 1. "Oppose $33 Billion War supplemental" 2. " Oppose the foreign lobby AIPAC and their influence on congress. 3. Do not vote for any duel citizenship candidate,it constitutes conflict of interest. 4. Study and consider third party candidates. How about a United Labor Party, stop the out sourcing and unfair trade agreements.


Posted by: Ron Wal

Tell your Senators not to continue shortchanging the American people as they have been doing for the last 60 years. Tell them to separate their religious falsehoods from the peoples government business.
Zionism is the worst problem we face in America.

Read the book: TRUTH COUNTS--Don't count on getting it. by Ronald L. Waldron

Posted by Ronald L. Waldron at July 19, 2010 08:02 PM