Parts Catalog Accessories Catalog How To Articles Tech Forums
Call Pelican Parts at 888-280-7799
Shopping Cart Cart | Project List | Order Status | Help



Go Back   PeachParts Mercedes-Benz Forum > General Discussions > Off-Topic Discussion

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 02-22-2006, 02:02 PM
H2O2's Avatar
Empty Vessel
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Ladeluftkühlerstadt
Posts: 1,429
Oopsie, Francis wants off the bus

"Leninists!" Cries Neo-Con Nabob, Suing for Divorce
by Jim Lobe


WASHINGTON - Francis Fukuyama, best known for his post-Cold War essay proclaiming the historic inevitability of liberal democracy, "The End of History", argued in the Times article that neo-conservatives so badly miscalculated the myriad costs of the Iraq war that they may have empowered their two foreign policy nemeses -- realists, who disdain democracy promotion; and isolationists, who oppose foreign entanglements of almost any kind.

Even more provocatively, Fukuyama called the Standard's editor, William Kristol, his ideological sidekick, Robert Kagan, and their neo-conservative comrades who led the drive to war in Iraq "Leninist" in their conviction that liberal democracy can be achieved through "coercive regime change" or imposed by military means.

"(T)he neoconservative position articulated by people like Kristol and Kagan was ...Leninist; they believed that history can be pushed along with the right application of power and will," according to Fukuyama. "Leninism was a tragedy in its Bolshevik version, and it has returned as farce when practiced by the United States."

"Neoconservativism, as both a political symbol and a body of thought," he went on, "has evolved into something I can no longer support."

Fukuyama's break with the neo-conservatives marks the latest -- albeit among the most spectacular -- fracture in the ongoing splintering of the Republican foreign policy elite that has included aggressive nationalists, such as Vice President Dick Cheney; the Christian Right; traditional realists in the mold of former President George H.W. Bush; as well as neo-conservatives.

His divorce from the movement is particularly remarkable given his long and close friendship -- dating back to his college days -- with former deputy defence secretary (and now World Bank President) Paul Wolfowitz, perhaps the neo-conservative movement's most idealistic luminary. He also played a role in the development of the unilateralist Project for the New American Century (PNAC), an organisation founded in 1997 by Kristol and Kagan and designed to forge an alliance between the neo-conservatives, the Christian Right, and aggressive nationalists in the run-up to the 2000 elections.

Along with Cheney, Wolfowitz and Pentagon chief Donald Rumsfeld, Fukuyama was one of just two dozen PNAC charter members. He also signed a 1998 PNAC letter to then-President Bill Clinton urging him to "undertake military action" aimed at "removing Saddam Hussein and his regime from power".

Indeed, as late as Sep. 20, 2001, nine days after 9/11, he signed another PNAC letter to Bush that also called for Hussein's ouster "even if evidence does not link Iraq directly to the attack". Anything less, the letter argued, "will constitute an early and perhaps decisive surrender in the war on international terrorism".

Despite those hawkish antecedents, Fukuyama had second thoughts even before the Iraq invasion, particularly about the democratic messianism and unilateralism with which the "war on terror" was being conducted.

In a December 2002 Wall Street Journal article, he warned that "the idealist project" of transforming the region may "come to look more like empire pure and simple" and that "it is not at all clear that the American public understand that it is getting into an imperial project as opposed to a brief in-and-out intervention in Iraq".

But by late 2004, he was writing that anyone -- particularly neo-conservatives -- who believed that the situation in Iraq would become sufficiently stable after elections in early 2005 for U.S. troops to begin withdrawing was "living in fantasyland".

And one year later, Fukuyama was already warning that failures in Iraq were paving the way for a return to U.S. isolationism. He believed that the Abu Ghraib prison scandal, coupled with Washington's failure to marshal international support for its efforts in Iraq and its incompetence in stabilising the country, had largely destroyed its credibility as a "benevolent hegemon" to which the world, Kristol and Kagan confidently predicted, would willingly, if not eagerly, defer.

Fukuyama's latest article, "After Neoconservatism", is essentially an elaboration of these ideas in a more comprehensive form, as well as a plea for a more modest and classically "conservative" foreign policy that, without abandoning "the neoconservative belief in the universality of human rights", will also be conducted "without its illusions about the efficacy of American power and hegemony to bring these ends about".

To Fukuyama, as to foreign policy realists among both Republicans and Democrats, events of the past few months, particularly the victory of Islamists in elections in Iraq and the Palestinian territories, as well as their strong showing in Egypt, has bolstered his critique of the neo-conservatives' project in the Middle East.

In his view, the way in which the Cold War ended created among neo-conservatives like Kristol and Kagan "an expectation that all totalitarian regimes were hollow at the core and would crumble with a small push from outside" -- and that Hussein's Iraq would be no different.

"The war's supporters seemed to think that democracy was a kind of default condition to which societies reverted once the heavy lifting of coercive regime change occurred, rather than a long-term process of institution-building and reform," according to Fukuyama.

He noted that that expectation helps explain "the Bush administration's incomprehensible failure to plan adequately for the insurgency that subsequently emerged in Iraq".

The administration and its neo-conservative backers also assumed, mistakenly, that the rest of the world would accept Washington's unilateralism, including pre-emptive war, because, as a "benevolent hegemon", Washington would be seen as both more virtuous and more competent than other countries.

These delusions have come at a very high cost, according to Fukuyama, who, notwithstanding the sweeping pro-democracy rhetoric in which both Bush and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice continue to indulge, "the neo-conservative moment appears to have passed".

But Fukuyama is most concerned that these failures may spur an "anti-neoconservative backlash that coupled a sharp turn toward isolation with a cynical realist policy aligning the United States with friendly authoritarians".

"What American foreign policy needs is not a return to a narrow and cynical realism, but rather the formulation of a 'realistic Wilsonianism' that better matches means to ends," he wrote in what appears to be a bid to delineate a new foreign policy consensus -- some already call it "neo-realism -- around which centrist Republicans and Democrats can rally.

Indeed, in the prescriptive part of his essay, he calls for "reconceptuali(sing) …foreign policy in several fundamental ways" that are broadly compatible with ideas put forward by critics in both parties.

These include "demilitaris(ing)" the "global war on terrorism" by focusing more on winning "hearts and minds;" relying less on "coalitions of the willing" and more in multilateral mechanisms "that can confer legitimacy on collective action;" and placing more emphasis on "rule of law and economic development," as well as democracy promotion, which "in the Middle East is not a solution to the problem of jihadist terrorism; in all likelihood it will make the short-term problem worse, as we have seen in the case of the Palestinian election bringing Hamas to power."

"Neoconservativism, whatever its complex roots, has become indelibly associated with concepts like coercive regime change, unilateralism and American hegemony," according to Fukuyama. "What is needed now are new ideas, neither neoconservative nor realist, for how America is to relate to the rest of the world."

Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 02-22-2006, 02:10 PM
Banned
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 1,449
He's right. Pat Buchanan is sounding pretty reasonable to me these days.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 02-22-2006, 02:12 PM
MedMech
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
I won't bother pastEing anything long winded but http://www.google.com/search?sourceid=navclient-ff&ie=UTF-8&rls=GGGL,GGGL:2005-09,GGGL:en&q=the+death+of+liberalism
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 02-23-2006, 09:59 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 18,355
Quote:
Originally Posted by H2O2
[B]


"Neoconservativism, whatever its complex roots, has become indelibly associated with concepts like coercive regime change, unilateralism and American hegemony," according to Fukuyama. "What is needed now are new ideas, neither neoconservative nor realist, for how America is to relate to the rest of the world."
What are these complex roots he refers to? Regime change, unilateralism and US hegemony seem to pretty much encompass the imperialism of the neo-cons.

Reads as if he is trying to save his reputation by distancing himself from the failures of his friends.
__________________
1977 300d 70k--sold 08
1985 300TD 185k+
1984 307d 126k--sold 8/03
1985 409d 65k--sold 06
1984 300SD 315k--daughter's car
1979 300SD 122k--sold 2/11
1999 Fuso FG Expedition Camper
1993 GMC Sierra 6.5 TD 4x4
1982 Bluebird Wanderlodge CAT 3208--Sold 2/13
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 02-23-2006, 10:12 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 18,355
Quote:
Originally Posted by MedMech
"ssence of Liberalism

Liberalism is an all encompassing and interchangeable term for such seemingly diverse groups and organizations as anti-capitalism, Nazism, Communism, and Socialism in the tradition of institutional hedonism represented by evil groups such as NAMBLA. Liberals crave power and are will to inflict any evil on society or tell any lie to gain and maintain power and thus control. Liberalism plus power adds up to a ruling elite as toxic as any form of oppressive government the world has known. Bill Clinton, Pol Pot, Joseph Stalin, Adolph Hitler, Mao were liberals devoted to make themselves or their kind world rulers. They play by no rules; lack moral standards; and no human life is valuable while they strive for world domination. The state is their God. A freeman is anathema to them. They spin tales designed to entrance the gullible. They appeal to the emotions of those who can't conceptualize in order to gain power for advancing their evil agenda."

???????
__________________
1977 300d 70k--sold 08
1985 300TD 185k+
1984 307d 126k--sold 8/03
1985 409d 65k--sold 06
1984 300SD 315k--daughter's car
1979 300SD 122k--sold 2/11
1999 Fuso FG Expedition Camper
1993 GMC Sierra 6.5 TD 4x4
1982 Bluebird Wanderlodge CAT 3208--Sold 2/13
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 02-23-2006, 10:33 PM
H2O2's Avatar
Empty Vessel
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Ladeluftkühlerstadt
Posts: 1,429
Quote:
Originally Posted by kerry edwards
What are these complex roots he refers to? Regime change, unilateralism and US hegemony seem to pretty much encompass the imperialism of the neo-cons.

Reads as if he is trying to save his reputation by distancing himself from the failures of his friends.
Those are my thoughts, exactly--sort of a 'rats deserting a sinking ship' phenomena. He's dumping an ideology that's proven in light of reality to be an abject failure, so he's shopping around for a new one.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 03-09-2006, 11:30 PM
H2O2's Avatar
Empty Vessel
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Ladeluftkühlerstadt
Posts: 1,429
Published on Thursday, March 9, 2006 by the Independent / UK
At Last, the Warmongers are Prepared to Face the Facts and Admit They Were Wrong
by Rupert Cornwell

It has taken more than three years, tens of thousands of Iraqi and American lives, and $200bn (£115bn) of treasure - all to achieve a chaos verging on open civil war. But, finally, the neo-conservatives who sold the United States on this disastrous war are starting to utter three small words. We were wrong.

The second thoughts have spread across the conservative spectrum, from William Buckley, venerable editor of The National Review to Andrew Sullivan, once editor of the New Republic, now an influential commentator and blogmeister. The patrician conservative columnist George Will was gently sceptical from the outset. He now glumly concludes that all three members of the original "axis of evil" - not only Iran and North Korea but also Iraq - "are more dangerous than when that term was coined in 2002".

Neither Mr Buckley nor Mr Sullivan concedes that the decision to topple Saddam was intrinsically wrong. But "the challenge required more than [President Bush's] deployable resources," the former sadly recognises. "The American objective in Iraq has failed."

For Mr Sullivan, today's mess is above all a testament to American overconfidence and false assumptions, born of arrogance and naïveté. But he too asserts, in a column in Time magazine this week, that all may not be lost.

Of all the critiques however, the most profound is that of Francis Fukuyama, in his forthcoming book, America at the Crossroads. Its subtitle is "Democracy, Power and the Neo-Conservative Legacy" - and that legacy, Mr Fukuyama argues, is fatally poisoned.

This is no ordinary thesis, but apostasy on a grand scale. Mr Fukuyama, after all, was the most prominent intellectual who signed the 1997 "Project for the New American Century", the founding manifesto of neo-conservatism drawn up by William Kristol, editor of the Weekly Standard, the house journal of the neo-conservative movement.

The PNAC aimed to cement for all time America's triumph in the Cold War, by increasing defence spending, challenging regimes that were hostile to US interests, and promoting freedom and democracy around the world. Its goal was "an international order friendly to our security, prosperity and values".

The war on Iraq, spuriously justified by the supposed threat posed by Saddam's WMD, was the test run of this theory. It was touted as a panacea for every ill of the Middle East. The road to Jerusalem, the neo-cons argued, led through Baghdad. And after Iraq, why not Syria, Iran and anyone else that stood in Washington's way? All that, Mr Fukuyama now acknowledges, has been a tragic conceit.

Like the Leninists of old, he writes, the neo-conservatives reckoned they could drive history forward with the right mixture of power and will. However, "Leninism was a tragedy in its Bolshevik version, and it has returned as farce when practiced by the United States."

But was it not Mr Fukuyama who claimed in his most celebrated work, The End of History and the Last Man, that the whole world was locked on a glide-path to liberal, free-market democracy? Yes indeed. But that book, he points out, argued that the process was gradual, and must unfold at its own pace.

But not only were the neo-cons too impatient. A second error was to believe that an all-powerful America would be trusted to exercise a "benevolent hegemony". A third was the gross overstatement of the post 9/11 threat posed by radical Islam, in order to justify the dubious doctrine of preventive war.

Finally, there was the blatant contradiction between the neo-cons' aversion to government meddling at home and their childlike faith in their ability to impose massive social engineering in foreign and utterly unfamiliar countries like Iraq. Thence sprang the mistakes of the occupation period.

Some, however, are resolutely unswayed. In the latest Weekly Standard, Mr Kristol accuses Mr Fukuyama of losing his nerve - of wanting to "retrench, hunker down and let large parts of the world go to hell in a handbasket, hoping the hand-basket won't blow up in our faces."

Christopher Hitchens, the one-time Trotskyist turned neo-con fellow traveller and eternal polemicist, derides Mr Fukuyama for "conceding to the fanatics and beheaders the claim that they are a response to American blunders and excesses," and for yearning for a return of Kissingerian realism in foreign affairs.

The fact, however, remains that future Bush policymakers who signed the PNAC nine years ago are now mostly gone. Paul Wolfowitz, the war's most relentless and starry-eyed promoter, has moved on to the World Bank, silent about the mess he did so much to create. Richard Perle, leader of the resident hawks department at the American Enterprise Institute think-tank here, has vanished from the scene. Lewis Libby meanwhile has stepped down as Vice-President Dick Cheney's chief of staff, to focus his energy on staying out of jail.

Yet another signatory was Zalmay Khalilzad, now the US ambassador to Iraq. This week even he - Afghan born and the one original neo-con who had the region in his blood - admitted that the invasion had opened "a Pandora's box" that could see the Iraq conflict spread across the entire Middle East.

Those left in the administration - primarily Mr Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld, the Defence Secretary, are not so much neo-conservatives as "Hobbesian unilateralists", concerned to protect and advance US national interests in a lawless and violent world, whatever it takes.

As for Condoleezza Rice, never a signed-up member of the movement but mostly sympathetic to it when she was the President's security adviser - she has metamorphosed from hawk into pragmatist with her move from the White House to the State Department.

It is on George Bush's lips that neo-conservatism most obviously survives - in the commitment to spreading freedom and democracy that he proclaims almost daily, and most hubristically in his second inaugural in 2005 that promised to banish tyranny from the earth.

But even the extravagant oratory of that icy January day cannot obscure the irony of America's Iraq adventure. The application of a doctrine built upon the supposed boundlessness of US power has succeeded only in exposing its limits.

Thus chastened, Mr Fukuyama now wants to temper the idealism of the neo-conservative doctrine with an acceptance that some things are not so easy to change, and that the US must cut its cloth accordingly. He calls it "realistic Wilsonianism". A better description might be neo-realism. And if that brings a smile to the face of a certain former US high priest of realism with a pronounced German accent, who can blame him?

© 2006 Independent News and Media Limited

Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On




All times are GMT -4. The time now is 03:18 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2018 Pelican Parts, LLC - Posts may be archived for display on the Peach Parts or Pelican Parts Website -    DMCA Registered Agent Contact Page