Thursday, April 08, 2004

The Bush Plan for the Middle East -- Bring on the Funk, Bring on the Rapture Peace Plan, we don't need no stinkin' peace plan! Jeebus is a comin'. Go through the necessary "Salon Premium" ads and read this article. Yet another long-time Republican insider, one who voted Bush in 2000, leaves disgruntled over the use of Religious Ideological Imparatives in foreign diplomacy and how Rice and Powell are their weak-kneed enablers. On April 4, Bush delivered a speech calling for a "two state" solution, but without any details, and sent Secretary of State Colin Powell to the region. Leverett traveled with him. Powell gained agreement for the basic outline of the original plan, but just as he was to announce his breakthrough in a press conference Rice intervened, instructing him not to discuss any political process and that the whole burden of accountability must be put on the Palestinians and none on the Israelis. In private, Powell seethed but did not fight Rice. Rice had crumbled in the face of internal political opposition from the neoconservative armada. "In the end, the neoconservatives in the Pentagon and the vice president's office, plus Karl Rove's political shop, prevailed," Leverett told me. The American Jewish lobby was less a factor than the religious right of Christian Zionists, an electoral bloc in Bush's base, represented internally by Rove. Rove emerges not simply as a fixer or tactician, but as a foreign policy decision-maker aligned with the neocons by means of this connection.
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