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I agree with much of Jake says, but would like to clarify one point.

I was not saying that the neocons are motivated by ideology.  And I certainly would not disagree with the suggestion that will-to-power is a very important part of what drives them (although I think this is not simply a matter of personal and group will-to-power, but also relates to a vision of a global order based upon unquestioned American dominance, with Israel and the U.K. as junior partners.)

My quarrel is simply with any view of the neoconservatives as clear-eyed realists.  I think ideology really does circumscribe the perceptions both of the American neocons, and of their European (particularly, but not exclusively) British fellow travellers.

Precisely because of this, the very great skill of the neocons in manipulating the United States political system -- and also the British -- generates results which are deeply counter-productive even in terms of their own objectives.

Precisely because the neocons' perceptions were distorted by ideology, they bought the snake oil which Chalabi sold them about the supposedly secular Shia providing the basis for a new U.S.- and Israel- friendly Iraq, which would be a dagger pointed at the heart of the clerical regime in Iran.

In fact, the result was a massive strengthening of that regime -- and this may have been a result which Iranian intelligence anticipated, and sought through Chalabi to achieve.  The strategic position both of the United States, and of Israel, has been massively weakened.

And now, the U.S. and Israel find themselves caught between the devil of accepting that if the Iranians do want to construct a nuclear capability, they may very well be unable to do anything about it -- and the deep blue sea of an attack on Iran whose results are incalculable.

At the same time, however strong AIPAC may appear to be, beneath the surface American support for Israel is beginning to come into question -- with the issue of 'dual loyalty' quite patently hovering in the background.

I completely accept that, in putting so many threads together, I made my diary both excessively long, and difficult to follow.  This may have been a mistake.  But I did so because I thought the different threads illuminated each other -- in part because the issue of ideologically-generated misconception is central to all of them.

The Litvinenko/Scaramella disinformation machine has managed to manipulate the British elite, with as much success as Chalabi manipulated the American -- precisely because people will persist in seeing Russian politics in terms of simplistic ideologically-generated visions, just as they saw Iraqi politics.

by djhabakkuk (david daught habakkuk at o two daught co daught uk) on Tue Jun 10th, 2008 at 08:56:00 AM EST
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