FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Ledeen’s Big Score

?

David Frum had some good news for Michael Ledeen in the March 4 edition of his National Review Online diary.

“Michael Ledeen has earned his $25 million after all. TIME reports that members of bin Laden’s family found refuge in Iran after 9/11, though it insists (despite Michael) that the Evil One himself continues to hide in unpoliced areas of Pakistan.”

That could be true. Who can say? That’s the problem with what Washington called “foreign entanglements”; they eventually become indistinguishable, and the inevitable result is that every country in the world is an adversary. Ledeen has a habit of finishing columns with reminders that America is under mortal threat by “murderous mullahs” in Iran, and therefore he is an important cog in the machine facilitating direct US control of Southwest Asia. Frum comes about as close as one can in polite society to actually saying that when he says the following:

“Remember how after 9/11 we were treated to a whole flood of expertise all aimed at convincing us that it was impossible that the various terror-states could cooperate? Sunni Muslims, we were told, don’t cooperate with Shiites, secularists don’t cooperate with religious extremists, and so on and on and on. But nobody seems to have informed the Shiite Revolutionary Guard that it cannot cooperate with al Qaeada. It seems to be cooperating with a will. So can we hear, please, fewer glib assertions that al Qaeda would never, ever cooperate with Iraq?”

“Cooperating with a will”, runs Frum’s phrase, as if there is any other way to cooperate. It never occurs to Frum that true international cooperation stems from the ability to believe that there are shared goals. Perhaps that’s because Frum, Ledeen, and others believe that there is no difference between convincing a party that the US shares its interests and the US paying that party off for the sake of superficial compliance.

Or, better still, for the sake of appearance. If the Bulgarian leadership gets paid enough, they appear to be allies. Same with the Qataris and the Kuwaitis, and Spain’s President Lopez, who looked more like a hostage than a head of state when he shared a stage with Bush last month to endorse the Iraqi operation.

A trickle-down approach to coalition building if I’ve ever seen one. Buy off the elites, let them enforce the would-be international consensus. Let the people of the less significant nations know that the US has every right to use their resources for causes they violently oppose. This isn’t your father’s conservatism. Is it?

Such lofty philosophical concerns really don’t matter to men like David Frum, however. Frum asserts that Ledeen has earned his $25 million, and one has to suppose he’s right. If Ledeen gets his way and the US military goes into Iran for regime change, the profits for US contractors undoubtedly will dwarf what Ledeen has made for spinning the myth of the murderous mullahs.

That $25 million? A finder’s fee, really. Ledeen found a country on which he could focus neocon ire and then found a pretext for it. If Ledeen’s words are heeded, and the US military turns Iran into a battlefield, then his paymasters likely will conclude that the aforementioned sum would be a bargain at twice the price.

ANTHONY GANCARSKI is a regular contributor to CounterPunch, and accepts emails at anthony.gancarski@attbi.com

 

More articles by:

ANTHONY GANCARSKI is a regular CounterPunch columnist. He can be reached at Anthony.Gancarski@attbi.com

Weekend Edition
January 18, 2019
Friday - Sunday
Melvin Goodman
Star Wars Revisited: One More Nightmare From Trump
John Davis
“Weather Terrorism:” a National Emergency
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Sometimes an Establishment Hack is Just What You Need
Louisa Willcox
Sky Bears, Earth Bears: Finding and Losing True North
Robert Fisk
Bernie Sanders, Israel and the Middle East
Robert Fantina
Pompeo, the U.S. and Iran
David Rosen
The Biden Band-Aid: Will Democrats Contain the Insurgency?
Nick Pemberton
Human Trafficking Should Be Illegal
Steve Early - Suzanne Gordon
Did Donald Get The Memo? Trump’s VA Secretary Denounces ‘Veteran as Victim’ Stereotyping
Andrew Levine
The Tulsi Gabbard Factor
John W. Whitehead
The Danger Within: Border Patrol is Turning America into a Constitution-Free Zone
Dana E. Abizaid
Kafka’s Grave: a Pilgrimage in Prague
Rebecca Lee
Punishment Through Humiliation: Justice For Sexual Assault Survivors
Dahr Jamail
A Planet in Crisis: The Heat’s On Us
John Feffer
Trump Punts on Syria: The Forever War is Far From Over
Dave Lindorff
Shut Down the War Machine!
Mark Ashwill
The Metamorphosis of International Students Into Honorary US Nationalists: a View from Viet Nam
Ramzy Baroud
The Moral Travesty of Israel Seeking Arab, Iranian Money for its Alleged Nakba
Ron Jacobs
Allen Ginsberg Takes a Trip
Jake Johnston
Haiti by the Numbers
Binoy Kampmark
No-Confidence Survivor: Theresa May and Brexit
Victor Grossman
Red Flowers for Rosa and Karl
Cesar Chelala
President Donald Trump’s “Magical Realism”
Christopher Brauchli
An Education in Fraud
Paul Bentley
The Death Penalty for Canada’s Foreign Policy?
David Swanson
Top 10 Reasons Not to Love NATO
Louis Proyect
Breaking the Left’s Gay Taboo
Kani Xulam
A Saudi Teen and Freedom’s Shining Moment
Ralph Nader
Bar Barr or Regret this Dictatorial Attorney General
Jessicah Pierre
A Dream Deferred: MLK’s Dream of Economic Justice is Far From Reality
Edward J. Martin
Glossip v. Gross, the Eighth Amendment and the Torture Court of the United States
Chuck Collins
Shutdown Expands the Ranks of the “Underwater Nation”
Paul Edwards
War Whores
Alycee Lane
Trump’s Federal Government Shutdown and Unpaid Dishwashers
Martha Rosenberg
New Questions About Ritual Slaughter as Belgium Bans the Practice
Wim Laven
The Annual Whitewashing of Martin Luther King Jr.
Nicky Reid
Panarchy as Full Spectrum Intersectionality
Jill Richardson
Hollywood’s Fat Shaming is Getting Old
Nyla Ali Khan
A Woman’s Wide Sphere of Influence Within Folklore and Social Practices
Richard Klin
Dial Israel: Amos Oz, 1939-2018
Graham Peebles
A Global Battle of Values and Ideals
David Rovics
Of Triggers and Bullets
Elliot Sperber
Eddie Spaghetti’s Alphabet
January 17, 2019
Stan Cox
That Green Growth at the Heart of the Green New Deal? It’s Malignant
David Schultz
Trump vs the Constitution: Why He Cannot Invoke the Emergencies Act to Build a Wall
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail