Wednesday, February 9, 2005


US think tank: we are the world

A visit to the American Enterprise Institute site is like going to the homepage of the Israeli government. There seems to be a similar outlook on everything, from the Intifada and its coverage in the media to the policies that the world should be adopting to events in the Middle East. But, it's scary in a lot of ways. It tends to see the world as a service desk for the US.

I basically ignore whatever this "think tank" says, because one of its members is always on television here in Italy and is always spouting off the most ridiculous and unconfirmed claims, such as some Italian peace movements were condoning terrorism and the killing of American soldiers (oh, yes, and saying that it was a sixteen year old who informed him of this fact, by the way). But, unfortunately for many in the world, George Bush said on 26 February, 2003 , 'At the American Enterprise Institute, some of the finest minds in our nation are at work on some of the greatest challenges to our nation. You do such good work that my administration has borrowed 20 such minds.' So, what these folks say become US policy, and therefore global policy.

Just today, in an article on the site we see that James K. Glassman waxes poetic on the closer relations between the US and Europe. This is what he writes:

"But be clear: Europeans are not drawing closer to the United States because we're changing our policies to suit them.

As my American Enterprise Institute colleague, Danielle Pletka, wrote last week in the Financial Times: "Washington is setting not only the agenda but also the terms of debate." She says that Europe has moved toward the U.S. position on Iran as a nuclear threat, and on new leadership and democracy as preconditions for negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.

Left Bank intellectuals will still ridicule Bush, but, in this new world, they are becoming just as irrelevant as their counterparts in Manhattan and Hollywood."

It seems like irrelevancy is a very important feature for your interlocutors, critics and adversaries to have.This was the key word used by Israel to delegitimise Arafat, and now it's starting to set foot in Western bilateral relations between allied States and their political and intellectual leaders.

Europe isn't intended be an equal partner in the US visions of global imperialism. The US is setting the agenda, as well as even how any of the items can be discussed or debated. I find that more than a little scary and a good reason for Europe to begin to be more careful about becoming totally irrelevant, and not just the Lefties.

Another interesting book review of The Democratic Ideal (I wish I had time to read the whole site, it is a wealth of propaganda) by Joshua Muravchik states:

"Some skeptics warn that democracy may not prove to be a cure-all for terrorism. Perhaps, but the record so far shows that democracies rarely produce wars or terrorism, and at a minimum we can predict confidently that we will have less of both as democracy spreads."

Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't the US just produce a few wars recently? Haven't they got a few more waiting in the wings?


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