Andrew Sullivan on Neo Conservatism

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Ben Cohen
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By Ben Cohen

Andrew Sullivan skewers the ideology he once respected:

I took neoconservatism seriously for a long time, because it offered
an interesting critique of what's wrong with the Middle East, and
seemed to have the only coherent strategic answer to the savagery of
9/11. I now realize that the answer - the permanent occupation of Iraq
- was absurdly utopian and only made feasible by exploiting the psychic
trauma of that dreadful day. The closer you examine it, the clearer it
is that neoconservatism, in large part, is simply about enabling the
most irredentist elements in Israel and sustaining a permanent war
against anyone or any country who disagrees with the Israeli right.
That's the conclusion I've been forced to these last few years. And to
insist that America adopt exactly the same constant-war-as-survival
that Israelis have been slowly forced into. Cheney saw America as
Netanyahu sees Israel: a country built for permanent war and the
"tough, mean, dirty, nasty business" of waging it (with a few war
crimes to keep the enemy on their toes).

But America is not Israel. America might support Israel, might have
a special relationship with Israel. But America is not Israel. And once
that distinction is made, much of the neoconservative ideology
collapses.