Neocons in the Democratic Party

Discussion in 'Politics' started by KenH, May 29, 2006.

  1. KenH

    KenH
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    Looks like neoconservatism is trying to return to the place of its birth.


    Neocons in the Democratic Party

    Like Kennedy and Truman, Democratic neocons want to beef up the military and won't run from a fight.

    By Jacob Heilbrunn

    May 28, 2006

    Don't look now, but neoconservatism is making a comeback — and not among the Republicans who have made it famous but in the Democratic Party.

    A host of pundits and young national security experts associated with the party are calling for a return to the Cold War precepts of President Truman to wage a war against terror that New Republic Editor Peter Beinart, in the title of his provocative new book, calls "The Good Fight."

    The fledgling neocons of the left are based at places such as the Progressive Policy Institute, whose president, Will Marshall, has just released a volume of doctrine called "With All Our Might: A Progressive Strategy for Defeating Jihadism and Defending Liberty." Beinart's book is subtitled "Why Liberals — and Only Liberals — Can Win the War on Terror and Make America Great Again." Their political champions include Connecticut Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman and such likely presidential candidates as former Virginia Gov. Mark Warner and Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack, who is chairman of the Democratic Leadership Council.

    This new crop of liberal hawks calls for expanding the existing war against terrorism, beefing up the military and promoting democracy around the globe while avoiding the anti-civil liberties excesses of the Bush administration. They support a U.S. government that would seek multilateral consensus before acting abroad, but one that is not scared to use force when necessary.

    These Democrats want to be seen as anything but the squishes who have led the party to defeat in the past. Interestingly, that's how the early neocons saw themselves too: as liberals fighting to reclaim their party's true heritage — before they decamped to the GOP in the 1980s....

    Vietnam, remember, was a liberal, not a conservative, war, undertaken by warrior intellectuals who were liberal at home but saw falling dominoes everywhere around the world. (The same lack of nuance plagues the Bush administration, which has been trying to depict a global kind of Islamic totalitarianism, when the foe, as in the Cold War, is really more diffuse and less of a monolith than American leaders are prepared to believe.)

    The Moveon.org types are hardly prepared to go down without a fight. At the moment, with no end to the imbroglio in Iraq in sight, they — the populist left — are poised for their greatest influence in the party since the McGovern era.

    The new Democratic hawks, like the old neoconservatives of the 1970s, represent an insurgency, a direct challenge to the establishment. And if they are to revamp the party, they will have to do a lot more than simply evoke the ghost of Truman and Co.

    Still, it is amusing to see that at the very moment when hawkish realists are trying to extirpate the neocon credo in the Republican Party, it's being revived in the Democratic Party that first brought it to life.


    - more at http://tinyurl.com/m3doo
     
    #1 KenH, May 29, 2006
    Last edited: May 29, 2006

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