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America's Know-Nothing Policymakers

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Donnachaidh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-14-11 08:56 AM
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America's Know-Nothing Policymakers
http://www.counterpunch.org /

The United States is attacking Libya based on vague hopes that peace will triumph after the NATO bombing ceases. There are plenty of reasons to doubt whether a few hundred cruise missiles will beget harmony in the Libyan desert. But one of the biggest mistakes would be to assume that U.S. government policymakers understand what they are doing.

The American media have already uncorked surprises, such as the facts that the Libyan opposition is a ragtag mob, not an army, and that Qaddafis opponents include organizations formally labeled as terrorists by the U.S. government. But this is only the tip of iceberg of official idiocy.

The latest follies are part of a long bipartisan tradition. In the decades since John F. Kennedys inauguration, foreign-policy makers have become Washingtons leading con men. Even though Whiz Kids and Dream Teams have dragged America into one debacle after another, the media and politicians still defer to the latest batch of Best and Brightest professors and appointees.

The U.S. invasion of Iraq was based on little more than a few phrases backed up by almost boundless ignorance. Paul Bremer, the chief of Iraqs Coalition Provisional Authority, admitted in his memoirs that he didnt know anything about Iraq when stepping down from Kissinger Associates to become Americas proconsul, Georgetown University professor Derek Leebaert observed in his new book, Magic and Mayhem. Adam Garfinkle, who worked as a speechwriter for both Secretary of State Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice, said in 2007, No one in a senior position in this administration seems to have the vaguest notion of modern Middle Eastern history.

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