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Pentagon official: US may take action against Syria (for Israel)

by America Firster Thursday, Oct. 16, 2003 at 5:06 AM

Pentagon official: US may take action against Syria (for Israel)

Pentagon official (JINSA/PNAC Zionist Extremist Richard Perle): US may take action against Syria

10/14/03: (ASSOCIATED PRESS) Pentagon adviser Richard Perle said Tuesday that the recent Israeli attack on an alleged training camp for Palestinian militants in Syria was long overdue and that he would not rule out U.S. military action against the Arab state.

Perle, a close adviser to U.S. President George W. Bush and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, spoke at a Jerusalem conference of conservatives from the United States and Israel.

"President Bush transformed the American approach to terrorism on Sept. 11, 2001, when he said he will not distinguish between terrorists and the states who harbor them," Perle said.

"I was happy to see that Israel has now taken a similar step in responding to acts of terror that originate in Lebanese territory by going to the rulers of Lebanon in Damascus."

Israel has said the training camp it targeted in an Oct. 5 airstrike was used by Islamic Jihad, a Palestinian militant group that had carried out a suicide bombing in the Israeli port city of Haifa two days earlier, killing 20 people.

Israel has accused Syria of allowing Palestinian militant groups to train and operate from its territory. The Israeli air strike was the first attack on Syrian soil in three decades.

Perle said he hoped the air strike reflected a new Israeli policy similar to the Bush doctrine.

"We have problems with the Syrians who continue to support terrorism. We have to find a way to get them to stop," Perle later told The Associated Press.

Asked whether this would include possible U.S. military action against Syria, he said: "Everything's possible."

Perle said it would not be difficult to commit forces to Syria despite heavy U.S. troop commitments to Iraq and the Korean peninsula, along with a continued presence in areas such as the Balkans and Liberia.

"Syria is militarily very weak," he said.

Perle stepped down from his position as chair of the Pentagon's Defense Policy Board this spring, following allegations that he had used his position with the Pentagon to further business deals in Singapore and the United States. He is still a member of the board.

Perle said that the Bush administration's "road map" to peace between Israel and the Palestinians by 2005 had failed, but that he supported the ideas Bush introduced in a speech on June 24, 2002.

In that speech, Bush outlined his vision for the creation of a Palestinian state alongside Israel, and called for a change in Palestinian leadership.

http://www.nowarforisrael.com

http://www.antiwar.com/justin/j100603.html



ISRAEL IS THE PROBLEM

Our problem….

This article appears in the October 17, 2003 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.

Cheney Behind New Mideast War Drive:

Return of 'Clean Break'

by Jeffrey Steinberg



With very little fanfare, in September David Wurmser moved over from the State Department office of arms control chief and leading war-party agitator John Bolton, to the Old Executive Office Building, working directly under Vice President Dick Cheney and his chief of staff Lewis "Scooter" Libby. Wurmser's move was highly significant, given that the former American Enterprise Institute and Washington Institute for Near East Policy neo-conservatives was one of the primary authors of the now-infamous 1996 "A Clean Break" document, which spelled out the current joint Mideast war strategy of the Ariel Sharon government in Israel and the Cheney cabal inside the Bush Administration in the United States.

Just days after Wurmser joined the Vice President's "shadow national security council," the Bush Administration—at Cheney's urging—made an abrupt shift in policy towards Syria, a shift that has now brought the entire Mideast region to the brink of war and chaos—worse, even, than the fiasco of the American occupation of Iraq, which military experts are increasingly describing as "our new Vietnam" (see page 60).

At an American Enterprise Institute event on Oct. 7, Leo Strauss acolyte William Kristol, the publisher and editor of the Weekly Standard, candidly admitted that he was miffed that the United States had not already moved beyond the Iraq war to the "next regime change" of "the next horrible" Middle East Arab "dictator"—Syrian President Bashar Assad.

'A Clean Break' Revisited

Turn the clock back seven years. On July 8, 1996, Richard Perle, currently a member, and formerly the head of the Defense Policy Board in the Don Rumsfeld Pentagon, delivered a document to the new Israeli Prime Minister, Jabotinskyite Benjamin Netanyahu. Perle, and a team of American neo-cons, had been tasked by Netanyahu—through the Israeli think tank, the Institute for Advanced Strategic and Political Studies (IASPS)—to draft a strategy for abrogating the Oslo Accords and overturning the entire concept of "comprehensive land for peace," in favor of a jackboot policy of U.S.-Israeli-Turkish raw military conquest and occupation.

The short policy memo, which Netanyahu, and his successor-Likud Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, totally adopted as the core strategy of their administrations, spelled out a four-pronged attack on the peace process and the entire Arab world. It has become a self-evident truth that, since the Bush "43" and Sharon governments came into power simultaneously in early 2001, "A Clean Break" has been the guiding strategic doctrine of both—particularly following the irregular warfare attacks on New York and Washington on Sept. 11, 2001.

The Perle-Wurmser policy document demanded: 1) Destroy Yasser Arafat and the Palestinian Authority, blaming them for every act of Palestinian terrorism, including the attacks from Hamas, an organization which Sharon had helped launch during his early 1980s tenure as Minister of Defense. 2) Induce the United States to overthrow the Saddam Hussein regime in Iraq. 3) Launch war against Syria after Saddam's regime is disposed of, including striking Syrian military targets in Lebanon, and targets in Syria proper. 4) Parlay the overthrow of the Ba'athist regimes in Baghdad and Damascus into the "democratization" of the entire Arab world, including through further military actions against Iran, Saudi Arabia, and "the ultimate prize," Egypt (see Documentation following for the "Clean Break" report).

On Oct. 5, for the first time in 30 years, Israel launched bombing raids against Syria, targetting a purported "Palestinian terrorist camp" inside Syrian territory. The bombing immediately raised fears that Sharon is preparing a nuclear strike, most likely against Iran. A senior Israeli intelligence source told EIR that Sharon's action was clearly backed by the "pro-Sharon" crowd in Washington, led by Vice President Dick Cheney and Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz: "They continue to be committed to their basic plan: Destroy Iran and Syria, and make Israel the dominant power in the region, and drive the Palestinians across the Jordan River." The source added that there "is obviously an agreement in Washington to do nothing." In a press conference a day after the Israel attack on Syria, President George W. Bush said Sharon had the right to "defend his own people," and then added, "We would be doing the same thing."

'Clean Break' Who's Who

In addition to arch-chicken-hawk Richard Perle, the other participants in the "Clean Break" exercise now constitute the hard core of the neo-con apparatus poisoning the Bush Administration.

The principal author of "Clean Break" and a series of follow-on IASPS strategy papers elaborating the new balance of power schema for the Middle East, was David Wurmser, now in the Office of Vice President Cheney. Wurmser's wife, Meyrav Wurmser, another of the "Clean Break" authors, is the head of Middle East policy at the Hudson Institute, a neo-con hotbed, heavily financed by Lord Conrad Black, owner of the Hollinger Corporation and sugar-daddy to Richard Perle, who was installed by Black on the Hudson Institute board as soon as the London-based publisher poured a pile of cash into the think tank at the start of the Bush "43" Presidency. Meyrav Wurmser received her doctorate at George Washington University, by researching the life and works of Vladimir Jabotinsky, the founder of Revisionist Zionism and a self-professed fascist. Before coming to Hudson, she headed the Washington office of the Middle East Research and Investigation Project (MERIP), of Col. Yigal Carmon, a retired Israeli Army Intelligence careerist, who is hard-wired into the U.S.A. neo-con gang.

Meyrav Wurmser has taken the point in promoting the overthrow of the House of Saud and the American military occupation of the Saudi Arabian oil fields, through a string of Hudson Institute policy papers, commentaries, and seminars.

Hudson has also played a pivotal role in the drive for war against Syria and Lebanon, as spelled out in "Clean Break." On March 7, 2003, Hudson sponsored a forum addressed by Gen. Michel Aoun, who was Prime Minister of Lebanon from 1988-1990, and who is pushing a military action against Syria, right out of the pages of "Clean Break."

Other authors of the 1996 war scheme were: Douglas Feith, now Assistant Secretary of Defense for Policy, and the overseer of the Office of Special Plans "information warfare" unit, which was instrumental in the black propaganda campaign to sell President Bush and the U.S. Congress on the Iraq war; and Charles Fairbanks, Jr., a longtime friend and disciple of Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, dating back to their graduate studies under Leo Strauss at the University of Chicago. Fairbanks is now at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies.

From Words to Warfare

On Sept. 16, just as David Wurmser was going to Cheney's office to replace Eric Edelman, a longtime Wolfowitz protégé now tapped to be the new U.S. Ambassador to Turkey, the Syria war drive was seriously launched. Chief arms control provocateur John Bolton was given the green light to testify before a House International Relations subcommittee hearing on Syria and Lebanon. That testimony had been held up for several months, as the result of a direct intervention by the Central Intelligence Agency, which issued a highly unusual white paper challenging many of Bolton's planned allegations of Syrian current involvement in terrorist operations and pursuit of weapons of mass destruction.

The fact that Bolton was given the go-ahead to Capitol Hill signalled that Cheney had scored a tactical victory over those in the Bush Administration who were promoting a dialogue with Damascus. In fact, Bolton's provocative testimony undercut quiet efforts, then under way, to establish fresh channels of cooperation between the United States and the Assad government.

The day after Bolton's appearance, the same House subcommittee continued the anti-Damascus rant, by hosting General Aoun and rabid chicken-hawk Daniel Pipes, who demanded an immediate confrontation with Syria.

This public display of venom in Washington was all the signal that Ariel Sharon needed. On Oct. 5, Israeli Air Force jets bombed a Palestinian camp deep inside Syrian territory, ostensibly in retaliation for an Islamic Jihad suicide bombing in Haifa the day before. However, the Sharon war cabinet had approved a Syrian bombing six weeks earlier. The Bolton appearance and the promotion of Wurmser into Cheney's inner sanctum just served as the green light.

To make the linkage between the Israeli actions and the Cheney-led Bush Administration tilt even even more transparent, on Oct. 8 the White House announced that it would no longer oppose Congressional passage of the Syrian Accountability and Restoration of Lebanese Sovereignty Act, the equivalent to the 1998 Iraq Liberation Act which set in motion the drive towards war against Saddam Hussein.

This time, Sharon and Cheney do not intend to wait five years to get their war. Unless they are stopped, their timetable is to have Israel launch war on Syria by November 2003. And heaven help the American GIs in Iraq if Sharon and Cheney get their way. As Lyndon LaRouche has demanded, "Beast-man" Cheney needs to be dumped from power within the next 30 days; and, along with him, the entire neo-con cabal. As Bush "41" and Karl Rove must understand by now, Cheney and his gang of "Clean Break" fanatics are the albatross around George W. Bush's neck, and time is running out.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Bush's War Plan Is Scarier Than He's Saying: The Widening Crusade

by Sydney H. Schanberg

October 15 - 21, 2003: (Village Voice) f some wishful Americans are still hoping President Bush will acknowledge that his imperial foreign policy has stumbled in Iraq and needs fixing or reining in, they should put aside those reveries. He's going all the way—and taking us with him.

The Israeli bombing raid on Syria October 5 was an expansion of the Bush policy, carried out by the Sharon government but with the implicit approval of Washington. The government in Iran, said to be seeking to develop a nuclear weapon, reportedly expects to be the next target.

No one who believes in democracy need feel any empathy toward the governments of Syria and Iran, for they assist the terrorist movement, yet if the Bush White House is going to use its preeminent military force to subdue and neutralize all "evildoers" and adversaries everywhere in the world, the American public should be told now. Such an undertaking would be virtually endless and would require the sacrifice of enormous blood and treasure.

With no guarantee of success. And no precedent in history for such a crusade having lasting effect.

People close to the president say that his conversion to evangelical Methodism, after a life of aimless carousing, markedly informs his policies, both foreign and domestic. In the soon-to-be-published The Faith of George W. Bush (Tarcher/Penguin), a sympathetic account of this religious journey, author Stephen Mansfield writes (in the advance proofs) that in the election year 2000, Bush told Texas preacher James Robison, one of his spiritual mentors: "I feel like God wants me to run for president. I can't explain it, but I sense my country is going to need me. . . . I know it won't be easy on me or my family, but God wants me to do it."

Mansfield also reports: "Aides found him face down on the floor in prayer in the Oval Office. It became known that he refused to eat sweets while American troops were in Iraq, a partial fast seldom reported of an American president. And he framed America's challenges in nearly biblical language. Saddam Hussein is an evildoer. He has to go." The author concludes: " . . . the Bush administration does deeply reflect its leader, and this means that policy, even in military matters, will be processed in terms of the personal, in terms of the moral, and in terms of a sense of divine purpose that propels the present to meet the challenges of its time."

Some who read this article may choose to view it as the partisan perspective of a political liberal. But I have experienced wars—in India and Indochina—and have measured their results. And most of the men and women who are advocating the Bush Doctrine have not. You will find few generals among them. They are, instead, academics and think-tank people and born-again missionaries. One must not entertain any illusion that they are only opportunists in search of power, for most of them truly believe in their vision of a world crusade under the serious, and they now have power at the top.

I believe that last week's blitz of aggressive speeches and spin by the president and his chief counselors removed all doubt of his intentions.

"As long as George W. Bush is president of the United States," Vice President Cheney told the friendly Heritage Foundation, "this country will not permit gathering threats to become certain tragedies." The president himself must tell us now what this vow entails.

The public relations deluge by Bush, Cheney, Secretary of State Colin Powell, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld seemed to be aimed at denying any policy fumbles and insisting that the liberal press was ignoring the positive developments in Iraq.

Mr. Cheney, the president's usual attack dog, aimed his sharpest and most sneering words at those who offer dissent about the administration's foreign and economic policies. Perhaps seeking to stifle such criticism, he raised the specter of terrorists acquiring weapons of mass destruction that "could bring devastation to our country on a scale we have never experienced. Instead of losing thousands of lives, we might lose tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of lives in a single day of horror." His implication was that Saddam Hussein in particular had presented this threat—when virtually all the available intelligence shows that Iraq's weapons programs had been crippled or drastically diminished by UN inspections and economic sanctions imposed after the first Gulf war in 1991.

But beyond all the distortions and exaggerations and falsehoods the Bush people engaged in to rally public support for the Iraq war, what I have never understood, from the 9-11 day of tragedy onward, is why this White House has not called on the American people to be part of the war effort, to make the sacrifices civilians have always made when this country is at war.

There has been no call for rationing or conservation of critical supplies, such as gasoline. There has been no call for obligatory national service in community aid projects or emergency services. As he sent 150,000 soldiers into battle and now asks them to remain in harm's way longer than expected, the president never raised even the possibility of reinstating the military draft, perhaps the most democratizing influence in the nation's history. Instead, he has cut taxes hugely, mostly for affluent Americans, saying this would put money into circulation and create jobs. Since Bush began the tax cutting two and a half years ago, 2.7 million jobs have disappeared.

All this I don't understand. If it's a crisis—and global terrorism surely is—then why hasn't the president acted accordingly? What he did do, when he sent out those first tax rebate checks, was to tell us to go shopping. Buy clothes for the kids, tires for the car—this would get the economy humming. How does that measure up as a thoughtful, farsighted fiscal plan?

In effect, George Bush says, believe in me and I will lead you out of darkness. But he doesn't tell us any details. And it's in the details where the true costs are buried—human costs and the cost to our notion of ourselves as helpers and sharers, not slayers. No one seems to be asking themselves: If in the end the crusade is victorious, what is it we will have won? The White House never asked that question in Vietnam either.

For those who would dispute the assertion that the Bush Doctrine is a global military-based policy and is not just about liberating the Iraqi people, it's crucial to look back to the policy's origins and examine its founding documents.

The Bush Doctrine did get its birth push from Iraq—specifically from the outcome of the 1991 Gulf war, when the U.S.-led military coalition forced Saddam Hussein's troops out of Kuwait but stopped short of toppling the dictator and his oppressive government. The president then was a different George Bush, the father of the current president. The father ordered the military not to move on Baghdad, saying that the UN resolution underpinning the allied coalition did not authorize a regime change. Dick Cheney was the first George Bush's Pentagon chief. He said nothing critical at the time, but apparently he came to regret the failure to get rid of the Baghdad dictator.

A few years later, in June 1997, a group of neoconservatives formed an entity called the Project for the New American Century (PNAC) and issued a Statement of Principles. "The history of the 20th Century," the statement said, "should have taught us that it is important to shape circumstances before crises emerge, and to meet threats before they become dire." One of its formal principles called for a major increase in defense spending "to carry out our global responsibilities today." Others cited the "need to strengthen our ties to democratic allies and to challenge regimes hostile to our interests and values" and underscored "America's unique role in preserving and extending an international order friendly to our security, our prosperity and our principles." This, the statement said, constituted "a Reaganite policy of military strength and moral clarity."

Among the 25 signatories to the PNAC founding statement were Dick Cheney, I. Lewis Libby (Cheney's chief of staff), Donald Rumsfeld (who was also defense secretary under President Ford), and Paul Wolfowitz (Rumsfeld's No. 2 at the Pentagon, who was head of the Pentagon policy team in the first Bush presidency, reporting to Cheney, who was then defense secretary). Obviously, this fraternity has been marinating together for a long time. Other signers whose names might ring familiar were Elliot Abrams, Gary Bauer, William J. Bennett, Jeb Bush, and Norman Podhoretz.

Three years and several aggressive position papers later—in September 2000, just two months before George W. Bush, the son, was elected president—the PNAC put military flesh on its statement of principles with a detailed 81-page report, "Rebuilding America's Defenses." The report set several "core missions" for U.S. military forces, which included maintaining nuclear superiority, expanding the armed forces by 200,000 active-duty personnel, and "repositioning" those forces "to respond to 21st century strategic realities."

The most startling mission is described as follows: "Fight and decisively win multiple, simultaneous major theater wars." The report depicts these potential wars as "large scale" and "spread across [the] globe."

Another escalation proposed for the military by the PNAC is to "perform the 'constabulary' duties associated with shaping the security environment in critical regions."

As for homeland security, the PNAC report says: "Develop and deploy global missile defenses to defend the American homeland and American allies, and to provide a secure basis for U.S. power projection around the world. Control the new 'international commons' of space and 'cyberspace,' and pave the way for the creation of a new military service—U.S. Space Forces—with the mission of space control."

Perhaps the eeriest sentence in the report is found on page 51: "The process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event—like a new Pearl Harbor."

Apparently for the neoconservative civilians who are running the Iraq campaign, 9-11 was that catalyzing event—for they are now operating at full speed toward multiple, simultaneous wars. The PNAC documents can be found online at newamericancentury.org.

In the end, the answers lie with this president—and later maybe with Congress and the American voters. Is he so committed to this imperial policy that he is unable to consider rethinking it? In short, is his mind closed? And if so, how many wars will he take us into?

These are not questions in a college debate, where the answers have no consequences. When a president's closest advisers and military planners are patrons of a policy that speaks matter-of-factly of fighting multiple, simultaneous, large-scale wars across the globe, people have a right to be told about it.

In his new book, Winning Modern Wars, retired general Wesley Clark, a candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination, offered a window into the Bush serial-war planning. He writes that serious planning for the Iraq war had already begun only two months after the 9-11 attack, and adds:

"As I went back through the Pentagon in November 2001, one of the senior military staff officers had time for a chat. Yes, we were still on track for going against Iraq, he said. But there was more. This was being discussed as part of a five-year campaign plan, he said, and there were a total of seven countries, beginning with Iraq, then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Iran, Somalia and Sudan. . . . I left the Pentagon that afternoon deeply concerned."

A five-year military campaign. Seven countries. How far has the White House taken this plan? And how long can the president keep the nation in the dark, emerging from his White House cocoon only to speak to us in slogans and the sterile language of pep rallies?

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^



"The Gun and the Olive Branch: The Roots

of Violence in the Middle East" by

David Hirst (August 2003) newly updated

thru The Nation Press. Available on

www.Amazon.com for .57. MUST READ.











Pentagon official (JINSA/PNAC Zionist Extremist Richard Perle): US may take action against Syria

10/14/03: (ASSOCIATED PRESS) Pentagon adviser Richard Perle said Tuesday that the recent Israeli attack on an alleged training camp for Palestinian militants in Syria was long overdue and that he would not rule out U.S. military action against the Arab state.

Perle, a close adviser to U.S. President George W. Bush and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, spoke at a Jerusalem conference of conservatives from the United States and Israel.

"President Bush transformed the American approach to terrorism on Sept. 11, 2001, when he said he will not distinguish between terrorists and the states who harbor them," Perle said.

"I was happy to see that Israel has now taken a similar step in responding to acts of terror that originate in Lebanese territory by going to the rulers of Lebanon in Damascus."

Israel has said the training camp it targeted in an Oct. 5 airstrike was used by Islamic Jihad, a Palestinian militant group that had carried out a suicide bombing in the Israeli port city of Haifa two days earlier, killing 20 people.

Israel has accused Syria of allowing Palestinian militant groups to train and operate from its territory. The Israeli air strike was the first attack on Syrian soil in three decades.

Perle said he hoped the air strike reflected a new Israeli policy similar to the Bush doctrine.

"We have problems with the Syrians who continue to support terrorism. We have to find a way to get them to stop," Perle later told The Associated Press.

Asked whether this would include possible U.S. military action against Syria, he said: "Everything's possible."

Perle said it would not be difficult to commit forces to Syria despite heavy U.S. troop commitments to Iraq and the Korean peninsula, along with a continued presence in areas such as the Balkans and Liberia.

"Syria is militarily very weak," he said.

Perle stepped down from his position as chair of the Pentagon's Defense Policy Board this spring, following allegations that he had used his position with the Pentagon to further business deals in Singapore and the United States. He is still a member of the board.

Perle said that the Bush administration's "road map" to peace between Israel and the Palestinians by 2005 had failed, but that he supported the ideas Bush introduced in a speech on June 24, 2002.

In that speech, Bush outlined his vision for the creation of a Palestinian state alongside Israel, and called for a change in Palestinian leadership.

http://www.nowarforisrael.com

http://www.antiwar.com/justin/j100603.html



ISRAEL IS THE PROBLEM

Our problem….





^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Bush's War Plan Is Scarier Than He's Saying: The Widening Crusade

by Sydney H. Schanberg

October 15 - 21, 2003: (Village Voice) f some wishful Americans are still hoping President Bush will acknowledge that his imperial foreign policy has stumbled in Iraq and needs fixing or reining in, they should put aside those reveries. He's going all the way—and taking us with him.

The Israeli bombing raid on Syria October 5 was an expansion of the Bush policy, carried out by the Sharon government but with the implicit approval of Washington. The government in Iran, said to be seeking to develop a nuclear weapon, reportedly expects to be the next target.

No one who believes in democracy need feel any empathy toward the governments of Syria and Iran, for they assist the terrorist movement, yet if the Bush White House is going to use its preeminent military force to subdue and neutralize all "evildoers" and adversaries everywhere in the world, the American public should be told now. Such an undertaking would be virtually endless and would require the sacrifice of enormous blood and treasure.

With no guarantee of success. And no precedent in history for such a crusade having lasting effect.

People close to the president say that his conversion to evangelical Methodism, after a life of aimless carousing, markedly informs his policies, both foreign and domestic. In the soon-to-be-published The Faith of George W. Bush (Tarcher/Penguin), a sympathetic account of this religious journey, author Stephen Mansfield writes (in the advance proofs) that in the election year 2000, Bush told Texas preacher James Robison, one of his spiritual mentors: "I feel like God wants me to run for president. I can't explain it, but I sense my country is going to need me. . . . I know it won't be easy on me or my family, but God wants me to do it."

Mansfield also reports: "Aides found him face down on the floor in prayer in the Oval Office. It became known that he refused to eat sweets while American troops were in Iraq, a partial fast seldom reported of an American president. And he framed America's challenges in nearly biblical language. Saddam Hussein is an evildoer. He has to go." The author concludes: " . . . the Bush administration does deeply reflect its leader, and this means that policy, even in military matters, will be processed in terms of the personal, in terms of the moral, and in terms of a sense of divine purpose that propels the present to meet the challenges of its time."

Some who read this article may choose to view it as the partisan perspective of a political liberal. But I have experienced wars—in India and Indochina—and have measured their results. And most of the men and women who are advocating the Bush Doctrine have not. You will find few generals among them. They are, instead, academics and think-tank people and born-again missionaries. One must not entertain any illusion that they are only opportunists in search of power, for most of them truly believe in their vision of a world crusade under the serious, and they now have power at the top.

I believe that last week's blitz of aggressive speeches and spin by the president and his chief counselors removed all doubt of his intentions.

"As long as George W. Bush is president of the United States," Vice President Cheney told the friendly Heritage Foundation, "this country will not permit gathering threats to become certain tragedies." The president himself must tell us now what this vow entails.

The public relations deluge by Bush, Cheney, Secretary of State Colin Powell, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld seemed to be aimed at denying any policy fumbles and insisting that the liberal press was ignoring the positive developments in Iraq.

Mr. Cheney, the president's usual attack dog, aimed his sharpest and most sneering words at those who offer dissent about the administration's foreign and economic policies. Perhaps seeking to stifle such criticism, he raised the specter of terrorists acquiring weapons of mass destruction that "could bring devastation to our country on a scale we have never experienced. Instead of losing thousands of lives, we might lose tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of lives in a single day of horror." His implication was that Saddam Hussein in particular had presented this threat—when virtually all the available intelligence shows that Iraq's weapons programs had been crippled or drastically diminished by UN inspections and economic sanctions imposed after the first Gulf war in 1991.

But beyond all the distortions and exaggerations and falsehoods the Bush people engaged in to rally public support for the Iraq war, what I have never understood, from the 9-11 day of tragedy onward, is why this White House has not called on the American people to be part of the war effort, to make the sacrifices civilians have always made when this country is at war.

There has been no call for rationing or conservation of critical supplies, such as gasoline. There has been no call for obligatory national service in community aid projects or emergency services. As he sent 150,000 soldiers into battle and now asks them to remain in harm's way longer than expected, the president never raised even the possibility of reinstating the military draft, perhaps the most democratizing influence in the nation's history. Instead, he has cut taxes hugely, mostly for affluent Americans, saying this would put money into circulation and create jobs. Since Bush began the tax cutting two and a half years ago, 2.7 million jobs have disappeared.

All this I don't understand. If it's a crisis—and global terrorism surely is—then why hasn't the president acted accordingly? What he did do, when he sent out those first tax rebate checks, was to tell us to go shopping. Buy clothes for the kids, tires for the car—this would get the economy humming. How does that measure up as a thoughtful, farsighted fiscal plan?

In effect, George Bush says, believe in me and I will lead you out of darkness. But he doesn't tell us any details. And it's in the details where the true costs are buried—human costs and the cost to our notion of ourselves as helpers and sharers, not slayers. No one seems to be asking themselves: If in the end the crusade is victorious, what is it we will have won? The White House never asked that question in Vietnam either.

For those who would dispute the assertion that the Bush Doctrine is a global military-based policy and is not just about liberating the Iraqi people, it's crucial to look back to the policy's origins and examine its founding documents.

The Bush Doctrine did get its birth push from Iraq—specifically from the outcome of the 1991 Gulf war, when the U.S.-led military coalition forced Saddam Hussein's troops out of Kuwait but stopped short of toppling the dictator and his oppressive government. The president then was a different George Bush, the father of the current president. The father ordered the military not to move on Baghdad, saying that the UN resolution underpinning the allied coalition did not authorize a regime change. Dick Cheney was the first George Bush's Pentagon chief. He said nothing critical at the time, but apparently he came to regret the failure to get rid of the Baghdad dictator.

A few years later, in June 1997, a group of neoconservatives formed an entity called the Project for the New American Century (PNAC) and issued a Statement of Principles. "The history of the 20th Century," the statement said, "should have taught us that it is important to shape circumstances before crises emerge, and to meet threats before they become dire." One of its formal principles called for a major increase in defense spending "to carry out our global responsibilities today." Others cited the "need to strengthen our ties to democratic allies and to challenge regimes hostile to our interests and values" and underscored "America's unique role in preserving and extending an international order friendly to our security, our prosperity and our principles." This, the statement said, constituted "a Reaganite policy of military strength and moral clarity."

Among the 25 signatories to the PNAC founding statement were Dick Cheney, I. Lewis Libby (Cheney's chief of staff), Donald Rumsfeld (who was also defense secretary under President Ford), and Paul Wolfowitz (Rumsfeld's No. 2 at the Pentagon, who was head of the Pentagon policy team in the first Bush presidency, reporting to Cheney, who was then defense secretary). Obviously, this fraternity has been marinating together for a long time. Other signers whose names might ring familiar were Elliot Abrams, Gary Bauer, William J. Bennett, Jeb Bush, and Norman Podhoretz.

Three years and several aggressive position papers later—in September 2000, just two months before George W. Bush, the son, was elected president—the PNAC put military flesh on its statement of principles with a detailed 81-page report, "Rebuilding America's Defenses." The report set several "core missions" for U.S. military forces, which included maintaining nuclear superiority, expanding the armed forces by 200,000 active-duty personnel, and "repositioning" those forces "to respond to 21st century strategic realities."

The most startling mission is described as follows: "Fight and decisively win multiple, simultaneous major theater wars." The report depicts these potential wars as "large scale" and "spread across [the] globe."

Another escalation proposed for the military by the PNAC is to "perform the 'constabulary' duties associated with shaping the security environment in critical regions."

As for homeland security, the PNAC report says: "Develop and deploy global missile defenses to defend the American homeland and American allies, and to provide a secure basis for U.S. power projection around the world. Control the new 'international commons' of space and 'cyberspace,' and pave the way for the creation of a new military service—U.S. Space Forces—with the mission of space control."

Perhaps the eeriest sentence in the report is found on page 51: "The process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event—like a new Pearl Harbor."

Apparently for the neoconservative civilians who are running the Iraq campaign, 9-11 was that catalyzing event—for they are now operating at full speed toward multiple, simultaneous wars. The PNAC documents can be found online at newamericancentury.org.

In the end, the answers lie with this president—and later maybe with Congress and the American voters. Is he so committed to this imperial policy that he is unable to consider rethinking it? In short, is his mind closed? And if so, how many wars will he take us into?

These are not questions in a college debate, where the answers have no consequences. When a president's closest advisers and military planners are patrons of a policy that speaks matter-of-factly of fighting multiple, simultaneous, large-scale wars across the globe, people have a right to be told about it.

In his new book, Winning Modern Wars, retired general Wesley Clark, a candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination, offered a window into the Bush serial-war planning. He writes that serious planning for the Iraq war had already begun only two months after the 9-11 attack, and adds:

"As I went back through the Pentagon in November 2001, one of the senior military staff officers had time for a chat. Yes, we were still on track for going against Iraq, he said. But there was more. This was being discussed as part of a five-year campaign plan, he said, and there were a total of seven countries, beginning with Iraq, then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Iran, Somalia and Sudan. . . . I left the Pentagon that afternoon deeply concerned."

A five-year military campaign. Seven countries. How far has the White House taken this plan? And how long can the president keep the nation in the dark, emerging from his White House cocoon only to speak to us in slogans and the sterile language of pep rallies?

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^



"The Gun and the Olive Branch: The Roots

of Violence in the Middle East" by

David Hirst (August 2003) newly updated

thru The Nation Press. Available on

www.Amazon.com for .57. MUST READ.



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