Refining the neo-con concession speech

The neo-con grip on America's foreign policy continues to weaken. The most recent evidence: a Weekly Standard article by former Rumsfeld advisor David Schenker, who is now a senior fellow at WINEP (Washington institute for Near East Policy), whose Board of Advisors included Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz. In it, he expresses frustration with Syria's ability to "run the U.S. table", serving as an obstacle to the neo-cons' grand designs for the Middle East.
"To be sure, the administration has tried to ratchet up pressure. But its policy has suffered from inconsistency, even ambivalence...After years of threats and condemnations, what has Washington really accomplished with regard to Damascus? Precious little.

Despite the administration's rhetorical campaign against Syria, Washington is in no rush to up the ante with Damascus...the sad reality is that with just over 900 days to go and attention focused on Iran, Iraq, and Hamas, the clock is running out..."
Schenker's article basically admits to the neo-cons' political base: Look guys, we've bitten off more than we can chew, and sorry, but our plan to change the whole Middle East is just not realistic. Some of his colleagues will be furious at such a revelation. This is a proto-concession speech.

Well, the neo-con plot was never realistic to begin with. As the Bush Administration's policies, shaped by this misguided vision, continue to play out in the Middle East, we should definitely expect more such frustration expressed, and continued infighting from within the neo-con ranks.

But the Presidential Primary season of 2008 is the time for true conservatives to tear down the scaffolding that the neo-cons have built around the GOP's "big tent". These idealogues need to find a new home. A recent LA Times article says:

"This new crop of liberal hawks calls for expanding the existing war against terrorism, beefing up the military and promoting democracy around the globe. the crusading Republican neoconservatism espoused by Weekly Standard Editor William Kristol and others lies in the smoking rubble of Baghdad, a new generation of Democrats wants to dust off and rehabilitate those traditional Democratic principles, which they believe were hijacked by the Bush administration.
The new Democratic hawks, like the old neoconservatives of the 1970s, represent an insurgency, a direct challenge to the establishment."
It's time to let Lieberman and Clinton and Obama and Feinstein and those liberal hacks deal with the neo-cons. Good luck. The GOP has had enough of their ideology.


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