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I've decided to write about the founding fathers in hopes that looking into their lives will put our times into perspective. John Adams is one of the Founding Fathers and Presidents that I have always admired. Partly due to his reverence for the Consitution and his will that drove the fledgling republic forward. He had principles and stuck by them, even if it cost him a second term. Being a lawyer John Adams used his brains and energy to instill an honor in his society for the burgeoning republic's sense that it is a society built on law and justice. Continue reading
Posted Dec 6, 2010 at American Future
It's been a long time since I've posted on Iraq -- I've been busy with Europe. These two articles (especially the first one) from the New York Times attracted my attention: A major Sunni umbrella group called on its members on Monday to register for the next round of elections and take part "despite our reservations." Adnan al-Dulaimi, the head of the group, called the Sunni Endowment, said in a briefing in Baghdad that clerics would be asked to issue fatwas, or religious rulings, essentially ordering Sunnis to vote in elections. Among its other functions, the Sunni Endowment is charged with oversight of Sunni Arab mosques and holy sites throughout Iraq, giving it wide influence among clerics. "I ask all Sunni people to register their names for the next election, because we are in a political battle that depends on the vote," he said . . . Perhaps as significant as his call for voting, Mr. Dulaimi explicitly renounced violence as a way for the Sunnis to regain power. Syrian security forces clashed early Monday in the hills overlooking Damascus with men believed to be militants connected to Iraq's insurgency, the official Syrian news agency SANA reported. Some of the militants were believed to have been former bodyguards for Saddam Hussein, the report said, but it gave no further details and did not say how it was known who they were or where they might have escaped to afterward . . . It was the second clash in as many days between the Syrian authorities and people believed to be militants, perhaps from the same group . . . Continue reading
Posted Dec 6, 2010 at American Future
A year ago, an article by Lawrence Kaplan in The New Republic profiled Bolton, calling him a "walking repudiation of neoconservatism." Here's some excerpts: Within the first year after his State Department appointment, he had engineered America's withdrawal from the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty, established a harder line against North Korea and Iran, scuttled a draft protocol on enforcing the Biological Weapons Convention, waged a successful campaign to oust the chief of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, and set the stage for America's abandonment of the International Criminal Court (ICC). What makes him so capable? The secret to Bolton's record is that, in a foreign policy team divided roughly between ideologues with no managerial skills and managerial types with no ideas, Bolton is that rare commodity: an operator and an ideologue. There's nothing "neo" about him: Rather than echoes of Daniel Patrick Moynihan, one hears from Bolton echoes of the postwar conservatism of the early National Review, of Barry Goldwater (who Bolton campaigned for), of Jesse Helms--who once boasted, "John Bolton is the kind of man with whom I would stand at Armageddon." What separates Bolton from the neocons is that he doesn't share their idealism: "I am pro-American," Bolton has said. "That means defending American interests as vigorously as possible and seeing yourself as an advocate for the U.S. rather than as a guardian of the world itself." Like his neoconservative counterparts at the Pentagon, he believes that, absent the robust assertion of U.S. power, a fundamentally Hobbesian international scene will erode. Unlike them, he does not believe the spread of American ideals can ameliorate this condition. Continue reading
Posted Dec 6, 2010 at American Future
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Dec 6, 2010