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What's the threat?

cwjerome

Diamond Member
Sep 30, 2004
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Many conservatives see the world in WWIV terms where WWIII was the cold war (and the US won it) and WWIV is the "war" against Islamic jihadism. This conflict more resembles the cold war than WWII... a clash of opposing ideologies. It's seen as lasting a long time and it's a fight for survival. Only one side can win. Only the ultimate spread of American cultural/democratic capitalism by way of force if necessary will make the US safe.

But now there's some new thought. Taken from an OP-Ed, I had a chance to read Robert Kagan's (a neoconservative if there ever was one) "The Return of History" and he says we are not in WWIV... we are in WW.5, or pre-WWI. He describes a world that has returned to the national-interest power politics by major players of the early 20th century.

He makes some pretty good observations and comparisons. However, he does not dismiss Islamic terrorism/theofacism but it does take a backseat to managing the new interest-based power struggles between established and rising powers. He also doesn't deviate from the need for a "muscular" US involvement throughout the world.

This political (neoconservative) division is analogous to the discussions within non-political realms (the intelligence community) concerning strategic policy.

Anything thoughtful to add here?

EDIT: Found LINKto OP-ED
 

Farang

Lifer
Jul 7, 2003
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Would probably help if you linked to the op-ed you are referring to.

I'm not sure if there is as great of a split as you suggest. I think most understand that international (that is, intercountry) relations are the most important aspect of foreign policy, and that fringe groups that engage in terrorism are more of a mess made of the nation-state system that we were handed after imperialism. The reason it seems so many focus on Islamic terrorists as a grave threat and don't talk so much about say, Russia's incursions to former Soviet satellites, is more because it doesn't play as well politically. They are all advocating a strong America that dictates the direction of global policy, the only difference I see is what they might focus on in their speeches and platforms. September 11 provides great political cover to put Islamic terrorism at the forefront, but such cover isn't as easily available for other more important conflicts we have with the interests of other nations.
 

cwjerome

Diamond Member
Sep 30, 2004
4,345
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Originally posted by: Skoorb
Link?

I think terrorism and its impact on the world is grossly overblown.
I agree with neoconservatives in general about the clash of ideologies and believe the Islamic Issue will be a significant concern for years to come. It's bigger than the simple "some people are angry at the way the US behaves." Yes, it's much larger than that. Regardless if you think the US response since 9/11 is overblown, you should not dismiss this major clash of ideas and its potential for great worldwide harm.

So I agree with the basic neocon premise, however where I differ with traditional neocon thinking is how the US should respond. As a superpower on the correct side of history I'm all for seeking to shape the world to our preferences and interests. But there are decent, better ways to do this rather than a inflexible system a hardlines, threats, and military incursions.

 

bamacre

Lifer
Jul 1, 2004
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Originally posted by: Skoorb
Link?

I think terrorism and its impact on the world is grossly overblown.
It is overblown because those in power see it as an opportunity, something to abuse, and from which to gain.
 

ElFenix

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Mar 20, 2000
101,626
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europe, china, north america, and india do resemble the old great power setup of the late 1800s/early 1900s and even the interwar period.
 

Lemon law

Lifer
Nov 6, 2005
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Where does very idea of any remaining neocon credibility come from? It least for the USA, neocons have cost us at least two trillion in money, mire us in two quagmires, has increased the size of the terrorist threat, and have almost totally alienated 1.4 billion Muslims against us. Emboldening our enemies and alienating our allies.

The fact is that neocons have not a single success to point to. And have build nothing positive or lasting. They merely exploit fear to gain power.

And once we realize that there theories are totally failed, its time to take the next step which is open up the garbage pail, and get rid of them
 

palehorse

Lifer
Dec 21, 2005
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Originally posted by: cwjerome
So I agree with the basic neocon premise, however where I differ with traditional neocon thinking is how the US should respond. As a superpower on the correct side of history I'm all for seeking to shape the world to our preferences and interests. But there are decent, better ways to do this rather than a inflexible system a hardlines, threats, and military incursions.
:thumbsup:
 

cwjerome

Diamond Member
Sep 30, 2004
4,345
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Originally posted by: GroundedSailor
Link? So we can all read what you have read before putting our 2 bits in?
A random editorial in The Arizona Republic I read maybe 3-4 months ago that mentioned Kagan's book. I'll try and find a link.
 

bamacre

Lifer
Jul 1, 2004
21,030
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Originally posted by: cwjerome
As a superpower on the correct side of history I'm all for seeking to shape the world to our preferences and interests. But there are decent, better ways to do this rather than a inflexible system a hardlines, threats, and military incursions.
What would you say are those ways?
 

Harabec

Golden Member
Oct 15, 2005
1,371
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Do you think mankind has what it takes to progress to the next "level"?
If not, I'm afraid threats, wars and power struggles will be how you "win", just as it's been for the last 3 thousand years.

Other than that, there is no REAL threat (seen any giant alien ships hovering above? :p), only made-up threat. That can be unwillingness to share resources, political ideas, religious ideas, anything.
 
Jun 26, 2007
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Originally posted by: The Green Bean
Originally posted by: Skoorb
Link?

I think terrorism and its impact on the world is grossly overblown.
And that overblowing is what's causing most of the impact.
This is one of the few (if any other) times that i will agree with you but not for the same reasons.

The fear that was caused by terrorism definently was the tool that was used so that leaders could and are getting away with their own agendas built on that fear, that includes Pakistans deals with the Taliban, the Iraq war and the various laws in various countries that definently infringes on the rights of the population.

Pakistan should fear the win of Obama because he's not going to play softball when it comes to dealing with the real cause of terrorism which is stationed inside of Pakistans (disputed) territory.

You'd be much better of with McCain who wants to "sit down and talk" with his "ally" in Pakistan (can you hear the McSame shout in that one?) while he publically stated that he would refuse to sit down with Spains government, a country that has troops in Afghanistan and is a NATO ally.
 

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