The Secret History of How America's "Neo-Conservative" Trotskyites Came
to Power and Orchestrated the War
Against Iraq as the First Step in
Their Drive for Global Empire
By Michael Collins Piper
At the top left is an image of a statue of the Virgin Mary which an
Israeh army tank fired upon on March 14, 2002, shattering the nose and
slicing off the hands. The hated statue stood high above the Roman
Catholic Holy Family Hospital and Orphanage in Jerusalem adjacent to
a Vatican flag. The Israelis fired on the statue at close range. It was not an
accident. It was an act of hatred.
And hatred likewise is expressed in the violent image of the hanging
of Haman, taken from a Jewish religious artifact. One of the first of many
enemies of the Jewish people, Haman's assassination by execution is cel-
ebrated on the holiday of Purim, which — ^just coincidentally, it is said —
marked the onslaught of the war against Iraq, a point noted in Jewish
newspapers that referred to Saddam Hussein as a modern-day Haman.
At middle-level left is a relief from Rome's Arch of Titus, recalling
the sacking of Jerusalem by the Romans and the triumphant seizure of the
Jewish temple's menorah.
The fall of Jerusalem — one of the great disasters of Jewish history —
was another of the endless series of events marking the conflict of the
Middle East that is still being fought out today.
At mid-level right is Ariel Sharon, the brutal Israeli caesar whose
hard-line policies against the Christian and Muslim Palestinian Arabs are
highly popular among his fellow countrymen and much admired by most
American Jewish leaders and their allies in the neo-conservative move-
ment, despite significant grass-roots Jewish opposition notwithstanding.
Sharon's goal of achieving "Greater Israel" is part and parcel of the
neo-conservative agenda and the ultimate in hate and imperialism.
At the bottom, from left to right, are Paul Wolfowitz, Richard Perle,
William Kristol and Henry Kissinger, perhaps the most powerful figures
in the neo-conservative network that orchestrated the tragic U.S. war
against Iraq. The neo-conservative High Priests of War dream of estab-
lishing a world empire and intend to use America's young people as the
cannon fodder to accomplish their goal.
That is hate — and we must fight hate.
The Secret History of How America's
^Neo-Conservative'' Trotskyites Came to Power
and Orchestrated the War Against Iraq as the
First Step in Their Drive for Global Empire
By Michael Collins Piper
American Free Press
The High Priests of War
First Printing: February 2004
Second Printing: May 2004
Third Printing: August 2004
Fourth Printing: October 2004
Published by: American Free Press
645 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, Suite 100
Washington, D.C. 20003
Library of Congress Control Number: 2004092376
ISBN Number: 0-9745484-1-3
© 2004 by Michael Colhns Piper
To contact the author:
Michael Collins Piper
P.O. Box 15728
Washington, DC 20003
Tel: (202) 544-5977
Special thanks to John Tiffany for an excellent copy editing job, as
always. Looking for the best copy editor in the world? It's John. He'll
drive you crazy with his questions and his nit-picking, but he gets the job
done. (John can be contacted at email@example.com) Any errors in this
book are mine alone. It simply means I ignored John's sage advice.
Also thanks to Lamis Andoni for permission to quote from her excel-
lent exposition regarding the nefarious record of Bernard Lewis.
Special acknowledgment is due Bill and Kathleen Christison and
Anis Shivani whose hard-hitting commentary on counterpunch.org added
a great deal to my efforts.
The work of John Sugg at atlanta.creativeloafing.com is a "must" for
anyone interested in the intrigues of the powers-that-be.
And the importance of the work of Andrew Bacevich, particularly his
book, American Empire, cannot be overstated.
Thanks to those and many others who have dared to tackle the most
masterful intriguers ever to assume such immense power in America.
"The list of possible Bad Places does not begin with haunted houses and end
with haunted hotels; there have been horror stories written about haunted railroad
stations, automobiles, meadows, office buildings. The list is endless, and proba-
bly all of it goes back to the caveman who had to move out of his hole in the rock
because he heard what sounded like voices back there in the shadows. Whether
they were actual voices or the voices of the wind is a question we still ask our-
selves on dark nights."
— Horror Master Stephen King
The High Priests of War is a non-fiction book that resembles a Gothic horror
novel, a classic tale of a haunted house and the evil spirits that dwell within, the
story of a wealthy young king— scion of a famous family — ensconced in a state-
ly palace and endowed with great powers, yet surrounded, even possessed, by
malevolent demonic forces manipulating him from "back there in the shadows."
But the high priests of war exist in real life. The damage these neo-conserva-
tive war-mongers are doing to America and the world is immense.
If these neo-conservatives continue in their reign of ruin, we should not be
surprised to see the White House end up looking once again as it did after
being gutted by British torches in 1814: whether the consequence of a popu-
lar rebellion by angry patriotic Americans or the result of an attack by foreign
forces determined to stop dead the intrigues of the high priests of war.
One thing is certain: The time has come. Something has to be done . . .
Andrew St. Ge o r g e
October 25, 1923 - May 2, 2001
To the one and only
Andrew St. George
— The fearless journalist who pioneered coverage of the strange
intrigues of the neo-conservative warmongers long before they
came to be acknowledged by the major media as front-line players
on the global stage.
A valued friend and a memorable figure, a raconteur like no
other, a bon vivant and a loving husband and proud father, Andrew
was a mentor with a track record as an international correspondent
few could match.
Andrew's first-on-the- scene reportage exposed the neo-conser-
vatives as the genuine menace to world peace that they are.
— Michael Collins Piper
A United States Senator Speaks Out:
Why Americans are really dying in Iraq . . .
"With 760 dead in Iraq and over 3,000 maimed for life, home folks continue
to argue why we are in Iraq — and how to get out . . . Even President Bush
acknowledges that Saddam Hussein had nothing to do with 9-11. .. Of course
there were no weapons of mass destruction. Israel's intelligence, Mossad, knows
what's going on in Iraq. They are the best. They have to know. Israel's survival
depends on knowing. Israel long since would have taken us to the weapons of
mass destruction if there were any or if they had been removed. With Iraq no
threat, why invade a sovereign country? The answer: President Bush's policy to
secure Israel. "
—U.S. Senator Ernest E Hollings (D-S.C.)
Writing in The Charleston Post and Courier, May 6, 2004
(For making these forthright remarks, in a column in which he also specifi-
cally named several of the "high priests of war" desaibed in this book. Sen.
Hollings — a longtime friend of the U.S. military — was harshly denounced by the
Anti-Defamation League and a host of politicians eager to curry favor with the
Israeli lobby. Yet, just shortly before, a respected lewish newspaper. Forward, stat-
ed that Israel had benefited from the Iraq war — "uniquely" it said — and that
Israeli intelligence had provided information used by the Bush administration to
justify the invasion of Iraq. See below for what Forward said.)
Leading Jewish Newspaper Explains:
Israel ^'uniquely benefited'' from Iraq war . . .
"On the eve of the war, Israel was a quiet but enthusiastic supporter of
America's war plans. Saddam Hussein's military power, it was universally agreed,
made him one of the lewish state's most dangerous adversaries . . . His overthrow
was seen as eliminating Israel's most serious existential threat . . . [and Israel]
eagerly cooperated . . . sharing information on Iraqi capabilities and intentions
. . . meant to help the American action .... But because Israel uniquely benefit-
ed from a war that is inaeasingly controversial in America and around the world,
fears of speaking out have grown even stronger than they were before the war "
— The New York-based Jewish weekly Forward, April 16, 2004
Foreword: Authority Without Responsibility . . .
Although much has recently been written about the intrigues of the
neo-conservatives who rule the roost in the administration of George W.
Bush, The High Priests of War is by far the most comprehensive work on
the subject available today, particularly in that it explores the neo-conser-
vative agenda from a highly important historic perspective that has gen-
erally been ignored in the heat of current debate.
It can accurately be said that the author, Michael Collins Piper, was
one of the first journalists on the face of the planet to have recognized the
neo-conservative infiltration of the upper ranks of the American political
and intelligence mechanisms and then — as far back as the early 1980s —
began writing about the phenomenon.
Piper duly credits our mutual longtime friend and colleague, the late
Andrew St. George — to whom this book is dedicated — with having pio-
neered the first significant news reportage on the neo-conservatives, and
it can rightly be said that St. George is the literary "godfather" of this
Tackling the most important political problem of our age and skill-
fully analyzing its origins, naming names and describing the agenda and
the misdeeds of the highly astute and closely inter-connected group which
is dexterously pulling the strings that manipulate the marionettes on the
political stage. The High Priests of War is a landmark work.
The neoconservatives have accomplished the supreme political feat:
they have the authority but not the responsibility for the disastrous course
of American history, immune to their misdeeds and the responsibility
therefor, thanks to their controlled press.
Thus, as our country reels from disaster to disaster, the public is either
told by the press how wonderful it all is or replaceable politicians are
blamed for it while the neocons only tighten their hold.
This sordid scenario is unknown to all but a tiny handful of American
patriots. If a significant number of Americans can be awakened to the
political reality described by Michael Collins Piper so clearly in this
book, the exposure alone will put an end to the conspiracy.
— W. A. Carto
"Ifs time to declare war on
The High Priests ofWar'^
Although most — but certainly not all — American anti-communists
were sincere, it is vital to now face the sad and uncomfortable truth: the
Cold War was largely a fraud.
While the average American was being told to fear the Soviet Union,
America's biggest bankers and industrialists were engaged in extensive
trade and other lucrative deals with the Communist Party bosses. And the
U.S. government itself was making vast amounts of defense technology
and other data available to our purported rival. So yes, the Cold War was
very much a fraud.
To finally understand and accept that difficult reality makes it possi-
ble for us to reassess the globalist madness of the last 50 years and to pre-
pare for the real battle for survival that lies ahead.
Until Americans are finally prepared to acknowledge that the anti-
communist frenzy to which so many devoted their energies was effec-
tively so misdirected and fruitless, there is no sense in fighting any fur-
ther. For generations we were fighting perceived "enemies" abroad, but
the real enemy was here at home — infiltrating and seizing power in the
upper ranks of the American national security and intelligence apparatus.
As evidence put forth in this book makes clear, the Soviet threat —
however great it may have been at one point in time — was, in more recent
decades, clearly on the downward spiral, its strength diminishing.
However, the neo-conservative forces, eager to exploit fears of Soviet
power in order to play out their own parochial agenda, were exaggerating
both Soviet military might and Soviet intentions. And it must be said,
quite correctly, that the foundation of the neo-conservative agenda — from
the beginning — was not just the security, but also the imperial advance-
ment, of the state of Israel.
We must abandon the archaic rhetoric of the past and focus on the real
threat to America — and to the sovereignty of all nations and peoples: the
power-mad imperial forces that are bent on using American resources and
military might to enforce a global police state under the control of a select
few: the international elite and their bought- and-paid-for politicians,
unprincipled bureaucrats, and the media shills who glorify and attempt to
popularize the agenda of the would-be rulers of a Global Plantation that
its proponents have stylized as the New World Order.
Although The Spotlight was quite on the mark when it dared to sug-
gest, upon the fall of the Soviet empire, that "communism is dead," there
were those relentless hold-outs who refused to face it. "Oh no," cried the
John Birchers, "communism isn't really dead. It's just a ruse. The reds are
going underground, just waiting for the opportunity to strike."
The Birchers and their like-minded throwbacks still believe that Josef
Stalin is hiding in a Kremlin closet, ready to jump out and say "boo." Yet,
ironically, only now are the Birchers coming to recognize that the neo-
conservatives — whom they promoted for years in the pages of their jour-
nals such as Review of the News and The New American — are hardly con-
ventional "conservative patriots" in any sense of the term.
The same crowd that rattled its sabers against "the communist threat"
has now begun to substitute "the Islamic threat" as the new danger to be
vanquished. This comes as no surprise. For years, during the Cold War,
American "conservatives" (especially the Birchers) freely (and falsely)
declared repeatedly that the Palestine Liberation Organization was part of
a "Soviet-backed terror network," the facts notwithstanding.
And if truth be told, it is no accident that these myths about the PLO
received their widest propagation in the writings of a pro-Israel neo-con-
servative ideologue, Claire Sterling, whose now-infamous "study," The
Terror Network, became the virtual bible of the Israeli lobby in its cam-
paign to discredit the Palestinian nationalist cause.
Now, in the name of "fighting terrorism," the conservative anti-com-
munist stalwarts have lent their support to the establishment of a police
state here at home as a way of "safeguarding liberty."
In this regard, note that more than 50 years ago — in the early days of
the Cold War — that ex-CIA man William F. Buckley, Jr., the soon-to-be
self-appointed "leader" of the American "conservative" movement, laid it
on the line. Writing in Commonweal on January 25, 1952 Buckley said
that he was willing to support "Big Government" for "the duration [of the
Cold War] because — he proclaimed — only "a totalitarian bureaucracy
within our shores" could assure total victory over the communist menace.
The anti-communist Cold War is now over, but the anti-Islamic (so-
called "anti-terrorist") Hot War is now under way. And here on American
shores we have a new Department of Homeland Security aiming to run
roughshod on American liberties all in the guise of protecting those lib-
erties. Why should we be surprised?
The "communist threat" never lay within the Communist Party USA
which, as American Free Press pointed out, was controlled at the highest
levels by Morris Childs, an asset of J. Edgar Hoover's FBI: a Russian-
born Zionist, Childs soured on Soviet-style communism when he detect-
ed the echoes of traditional Russian nationalism under Stalin. No, the
Communist Party USA, was never a threat, although Hoover — a long-
time ally of the Zionist Anti-Defamation League — was manipulating the
tiny party for the covert agenda of his behind-the-scenes "advisors."
Nor did the communist threat lie even within the furthest "liberal"
reaches of the Democratic Party. It was not the New Deal or the Fair Deal
or Came lot or the Great Society — or Clintonism — that brought a unique
updated American-style brand of Bolshevism of the Trotskyite bent to
America. Instead, it was the "compassionate conservatism" of the man
seriously being hailed as "the New Ronald Reagan": George W. Bush.
It is no coincidence that — ^just days into the war against Iraq — the
"official" American organ of the Trotskyites — Partisan Review — closed
its doors. In truth, the little intellectual journal now had no more reason
to exist, for its aim of securing power had been accomplished through the
proverbial "back door."
This book presents a brief but detailed overview of the intrigues of the
neo-conservatives. Much more could be written, but it would perhaps
belabor the point. Nonetheless, it seems appropriate to conclude, at this
juncture, by saying quite simply:
It's Time to Declare War on the High Priests of War . . .
— Michael Collins Piper
The High Priests of War
The Secret History of How America's "Neo-Conservative"
Trotskyites Came to Power and Orchestrated the War Against Iraq
as the First Step in Their Drive for Global Empire
The report that follows is based on this foundation:
THAT the war against Iraq being waged by the American administra-
tion of President George W. Bush is not only contrary to traditional "con-
servative" American principles, but contrary to all principles of American
foreign policy during the last half-century;
THAT the war against Iraq is being waged for far more broad-rang-
ing purposes than "regime change" or "eliminating weapons of mass
destruction"; first and foremost, as part of an overall effort to establish the
United States as the sole international super-power, capable military and
economically, to suppress any nations and/or peoples who dare to chal-
lenge American hegemony;
THAT the war against Iraq is simply a first step in a long-standing,
wide-ranging plan to launch an even more aggressive move against the
entire Arab Middle East in order to "remake the Arab world" to secure
the survival of — and expand the power of — the state of Israel;
THAT the war against Iraq is only the initial target of this carefully
planned scheme and that, ultimately, other Arab and Muslim states are
slated for outright extinction or some form of occupation or control by
American military and political forces (in alliance with Israel);
THAT the war against Iraq and the plan for the subjugation of the
Arab people is quite simply a modified, modernized adaptation of the his-
toric Zionist dream of "Greater Israel," adjusted to meet the demands of
the international oil companies, which are, in turn, fully prepared to share
the aim of dominating the oil-producing states of the Arab world in part-
nership with the state of Israel;
THAT the war against Iraq was deliberately orchestrated by a small
but powerful network of hard-line "right wing" Zionist elements — the
self-styled "neo-conservatives" — at the highest levels of the Bush admin-
istration, skillfully aided and abetted by like-minded persons in public
policy organizations, think tanks, publications and other institutions, all
of which are closely interconnected and, in turn, linked to hard-line
"Likudnik" forces in Israel;
THAT the war against Iraq and the additional moves by the United
States against the Arab world that are slated to follow can be traced to
Zionist political intrigue inside the upper levels of the U.S. intelligence
community, reaching as far back as the early 1970s, and that many of the
same players involved in that activity are now guiding Bush administra-
tion policy today;
THAT the war against Iraq is an adjunct to the previously-declared
"war against terrorism" which was, in itself, part of a long-evolving and
carefully coordinated propaganda campaign founded on the theory that
terrorism is somehow an "Arab" trait.
This report will examine all of these aspects, citing a wide variety of
sources, and will focus largely on given facts that have received wide cir-
culation in the "mainstream" English-language press in the United States.
The facts will speak for themselves. At any time this report delves
into speculation or opinion, such views will be duly noted or otherwise
"If it were not for the strong support of the Jewish
community for this war with Iraq, we would not be doing
this. The leaders of the Jewish community are influen-
tial enough that they could change the direction of
where this is going, and I think they should."
— U.S. Congressman Jim Moran (Democrat of Virginia) speaking at
a public forum in his congressional district.^
Despite the very public frenzy in the United States that followed these
remarks by liberal Congressman Jim Moran, even the influential New
York-based Jewish newspaper, Forward, was forced to admit in its Feb.
28, 2003 issue that the role of the pro-Israel lobby and its adherents who
held high-level policy-making positions in the administration of President
George W. Bush were increasingly becoming a topic of public discussion.
Congressman Moran had simply summarized the issue in a few short but
Forward cited liberal American Jewish columnist Michael Kinsley
who wrote on Oct. 24, 2002 that Israel's central role in the American
debate over possible war with Iraq was "the proverbial elephant in the
room." Of that elephant, Kinsley added: "Everybody sees it, no one men-
tions it." Forward stated it flatly: "Kinsley was referring to a debate, once
only whispered in back rooms but lately splashed in bold characters
across the mainstream media, over Jewish and Israeli influence in shap-
Michael Collins Piper
ing American foreign policy."^
The Jewish newspaper noted that now, even "mainstream" American
publications, ranging from The Washington Post to The Economist and
even broadcast outlets such as CNN and MSNBC were featuring frank
and open discussion of the topic. According to Forward's assessment:
Many of these articles project an image of President Bush and Prime
Minister Sharon working in tandem to promote war against Iraq. Several of them
described an administration packed with conservatives motivated primarily, if
not solely, by a dedication to defending Israel.
A few respected voices have even touched openly on the role of American
Jewish organizations in the equation, suggesting a significant shift to the right on
Middle East issues and an intense loyalty to Sharon. Still others raise the notion
of Jewish and Israeli influence only to attack it as anti-Semitism.'
Yet, as if in confirmation of the basic thrust behind Congressman
Moran's comments, even Ari Shavit, writing on April 9, 2003 in Ha 'aretz,
the Israeli newspaper, declared simply: "The war in Iraq was conceived
by 25 neo-conservative intellectuals, most of them Jewish, who are push-
ing President Bush to change the course of history."*
In fact, as we will demonstrate, the historical record indicates —
beyond question — that the then-impending war on Iraq was indeed large-
ly the product of a long-standing — and carefully calculated and orches-
trated — plan. That this plan aimed to establish an American global hege-
mony based upon the geopolitical aims of a small, but influential, group
of policy makers inside the administration of President George W.
Bush — a group tied intimately, for nearly a quarter of a century, to the
grand design of a "Greater Israel," a longtime dream of the Zionist pio-
neers who founded the state of Israel and whose modern-day hawkish
"right wing" followers are increasingly influential in all areas of Israeli
society, particularly in the government realm.
This select group of Americans — now increasingly well known —
describe themselves as the "neo-conservatives." They constitute a virtual
"War Party" in America. They are unabashedly admiring and supportive
of the hard-line Likud bloc in Israel led by Ariel Sharon. These neo-con-
servatives have directed policy decisions inside the Bush administration
that have essentially placed the United States of America (under President
The High Priests of War
George W. Bush) in firm alliance with the Sharon regime in Israel.
The study we are about to undertake will provide a comprehensive
overview of the history and development of the neo-conservative net-
work, naming names and linking their policies to the elements in Israel
with which they are allied.
But it is important to recognize that, in many respects, the policies
that the neo-conservative "War Party" has been advancing are, from a his-
torical standpoint, much at variance with the traditional American out-
look. The policies of the "War Party" represent only a miniscule — albeit
forceful and influential — faction in America. Philip Golub, a journalist
and lecturer at the University of Paris VIII, has written of the neo-conser-
The neo-conservative right has been attempting, with varying success, to
establish itself as the dominant ideological force in the United States for more
than 25 years, especially in the definition of foreign policy.
Long thwarted by democratic process and public resistance to the national
security state, it is now on the brink of success, thanks to George Bush's disput-
ed electoral victory in 2000, and to II September 2001, which transformed an
accidental president into an American Caesar. President Bush has become the
neo-conservative vehicle for a policy that is based on unilateralism, permanent
mobilisation and "preventive war."
War and militarisation would have been impossible without 1 1 September,
which tipped the institutional balance in favour of the new right. Apart from such
opportunist motives as seizing the strategic chance to redraw the map of the
Middle East and the Persian Gulf, this choice reflects much more far-reaching
imperial ambitions . . .
This authoritarian project became feasible in the unipolar world after I99I,
when the US got a monopoly on the use of force in interstate relations. But it was
conceived in the 1970s, when the extremist coalition now in control was first
The aim is to unite the nation and secure US strategic supremacy worldwide.
The instruments are war and permanent mobilization, both requiring the constant
identification of new enemies and the establishment of a strong national securi-
ty state, which is independent of society.^
American author Michael Lind points out that the imperial dream
outlined by the neo-conservative clique "was opposed by the mainstream
U.S. foreign policy elite and by a majority of the American people, who
Michael Collins Piper
according to polls opposed U.S. military action in Iraq and elsewhere
without the support of allies and international institutions like the United
Nations. The foreign policy of the radical right was enthusiastically sup-
ported by only two groups in the United States — neo-conservative poli-
cymakers and intellectuals at the elite level, and Southern Protestant vot-
ers within the mass voting public."^
Despite widespread opposition — both in the United States and across
the globe — on March 17, 2003, American President George W. Bush for-
mally announced that a war upon Iraq was imminent. After many long
months of acrimonious debate, the American president declared that the
United States — allied with Britain and a handful of countries — would
effectively "go it alone," without the support of the world community.
Some critics would call to attention the fact that March 17 was the
eve of Purim, the traditional Jewish holiday celebrating the victory by the
ancient Jewish people over their hated enemy, Haman. However, not all
Jews — in America or elsewhere — lined up with the "neo-conservative"
clique, even though, in fact, most of the pivotal neo-conservative leaders
are indeed Jewish.
RICHARD PERLE & WILLIAM KRISTOL
As American Jewish writer Stanley Heller pointed out in the days prior
to the attack on Iraq: "We owe it to Americans to tell them the whole truth,
that part of the war drive is being fueled by a wacko militarist clique from
Israel and its interlocking bands of American Jewish and Christian support-
ers."' In addition. Professor Paul Gottfried — an American Jewish academic
who calls himself a "conservative" but who objects strenuously to the activ-
ities of the self-styled "neo-conservatives" — added, writing elsewhere:
No one who is sane is claiming that all Jews are collaborating with [neo-con-
servative pro-war leaders such as] Richard Perle and [William] Kristol. What is
being correctly observed is a convergence of interests in which neo-conservatives
have played a pivotal role. At this point they control almost all [Washington,
D.C.] "conservative" think tanks, the "conservative" TV channel [pro-Zionist bil-
lionaire Rupert Murdoch's Fox News],r/!e Wall Street Journal, The New York
Post, and several major presses, together with just about every magazine that
claims to be conservative.*
Professor Gottfried's comments thus introduce us to two key names
that shall appear again and again in these pages: Richard Perle and
William Kristol. They are perhaps the two most influential of the "War
Party" neo-conservatives — by virtue of combined position, outreach and
financial clout. They are the central players who have been responsible,
in overwhelming part, for shaping the policies of the Bush administration
that have led to the current conflict in the Middle East involving the
deployment of American military forces against Iraq and the undeniably
disastrous occupation which has followed.
Although we shall learn much more about Perle and Kristol, a brief
introduction to the two neo-conservative figures is appropriate.
Often called "the Prince of Darkness," Richard Perle (who is Jewish)
has been active in pro-Israel causes in official Washington since the mid-
1970s when he was then an aide to powerful (now deceased) Sen. Henry
M. Jackson (D-Washington), a leading congressional supporter of Israel.
During that period, Perle was investigated on charges of espionage for
Israel. Later Perle became a lobbyist for Israeli arms interests and even-
tually was appointed by President Ronald Reagan to a key post in the
Department of Defense.
After leaving the Reagan administration, Perle remained active in
Washington, DC, enmeshed in a wide variety of institutions and organi-
zations, almost exclusively devoting his energies to advancing Israel's
cause, and particularly that of the Likud Party of Ariel Sharon. Of recent
date, Perle has maintained a special affiliation with the "neo-conserva-
tive" think tank known as the American Enterprise Institute.
However, when George W. Bush assumed the presidency, he named
Perle to head the Defense Policy Board, a little-known but influential
advisory board. It was from this post that Perle — utilizing his multiple
contacts with longtime associates named to high posts inside the Bush
administration itself — began making an active drive to advance the war
Although Perle resigned as chairman of the Defense Policy Board
just days after the firing of the opening guns against Iraq — following
allegations that he had conflicts of interest, stemming from his private
financial business dealings that intersected with official government poli-
cies upon which he had an impact and from which he stood to personal-
Michael Collins Piper
ly benefit — he remained a member of the board, and certainly its most
influential, until his formal resignation in March of 2004.
Considering all that we now know about Perle, it may be no coinci-
dence that as far back as 1986 it was reported that once, while on a visit
to Britain, Perle was introduced during a debate with then-Labor Party
leader Denis Healey as "the person in charge of World War III."? Some
Perle critics later suggested that the gentleman who made the remarks
may have been empowered with psychic abilities, considering the critical
role Perle has indeed played in sparking the American war against Iraq.
William Kristol (also Jewish) is equally influential, although in a dif-
ferent realm. As the son of an equally influential father, Irving Kristol —
once described as the "godfather" of the neo-conservative movement —
the younger Kristol parlayed his father's connections into a post as chief
of staff to Vice President Dan Quayle who served under the first President
Bush. But that was only Kristol's first step in his rise to vast power.
After the Bush-Quayle defeat by Bill Clinton in 1992, the younger
Kristol, through his own aggressive efforts — not to mention increasingly
favorable promotion of Kristol — by the major media, emerged as perhaps
the best known voice of the "neo-conservative" philosophy. He became
actively involved in setting up a well-funded and far-reaching public rela-
tions and information network, linked to numerous foundations and think
tanks with which his father had already been associated.
In addition to accepting an appointment as editor of Rupert
Murdoch's weekly national neo-conservative magazine. The Weekly
Standard, Kristol also founded his own organization. Project for the New
As we shall see, Kristol's own operations and activities meshed pre-
cisely — actually, interlocked — with those of Richard Perle. And as the
push for war against Iraq became increasingly more bellicose after
George W. Bush became president — and then, even more so after the 9-
1 1 terrorist attacks, which the neo-conservatives repeatedly sought to link
to Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein — Perle and Kristol worked ever more
closely, merging their own networks of influence to the point that the neo-
conservative philosophy became the guiding force behind the entire Bush
foreign policy making apparatus.
William Kristol — along with another close colleague, Robert
Kagan — has been the foremost publicist for the neo-conservative imperi-
al strategy. Their book, released in the year 2000, Present Dangers: Crisis
and Opportunity in American Foreign and Defense Policy, was a com-
prehensive statement of the neo-conservative point of view, featuring
essays by Perle — of course — and an assembly of other neo-conservative
"stars" associated with Kristol and Perle.
In a review of the book, former British diplomat Jonathan Clark
commented that: "If the book's recommendations were implemented all
at once, the U.S. would risk unilaterally fighting at least a five-front war,
while simultaneously urging Israel to abandon the peace process in favour
of a new no-holds-barred confrontation with the Palestinians."!"
Ironically, as Michael Lind, a foremost critic of the neo-conserva-
tives, has pointed out: "This turned out to be a prediction of the policies
that the administration of George W. Bush would adopt in the following
two years."" Lind notes: "The radical Zionist right to which [Perle and
Kristol] belong is small in number but it has become a significant force in
Republican policymaking circles."' ^ Lind adds that the chief concern of
many of those in this neo-conservative network is "the power and reputa-
tion of Israel."'^ He points out that they have waged vicious public rela-
tions campaigns against anyone who stands in their way — even including
prominent and influential American military leaders who have questioned
the neo-conservative policies.
THE ISRAELI CONNECTION
Thus, it is clear that the pro-Israel orientation of the neo-conserva-
tives has been a primary matter of concern in the formulation (and con-
duct) of the policies they have sought to implement.
And this raises the question as to how much influence the state of
Israel (and its American adherents, particularly in the neo-conservative
network) did indeed play in sparking the war against Iraq.
As we have seen, the role of Israel in the Iraq affair was a problemat-
ic one in terms of protecting Israel (and American Jews) from a possible
backlash by many Americans who resented the idea that perhaps U.S. pol-
icy was being predicated on the interests of Israel alone.
On November 27, 2002 The Washington Post reported that a group of
8 Michael Collins Piper
American political consultants who had previously advised Israeli politi-
cians had been hired by the Israel Project — described as "a group funded
by American Jewish organizations and individual donors" — to draft a
memo to American Jewish leaders and Israeli leaders as to the best means
by which to address the raging controversy over Iraq. The memo advised
them: "If your goal is regime change, you must be much more careful
with your language because of the potential backlash. You do not want
Americans to believe that the war on Iraq is being waged to protect Israel
rather than to protect America."i4 However, as Michael Lind reflected in
his new biography of President Bush, the influence of Israel and the neo-
conservatives is undeniable:
Under George W. Bush, the American executive branch and the government
of Israel were fused in a degree without precedent in American history. . . .
Bizarre as it seems, thanks to the influence of the Israeli model on neo-conser-
vatives in the Bush administration, the United States, the leading power in the
world, began acting as though it were an insecure and besieged international
pariah state, like Israel under the leadership of the Likud Party. '^
Writing in Time on Feb. 17, 2003, one of the most prominent of the
American neo-conservatives in the media, columnist Charles Kraut-
hammer, announced that the proposed war against Iraq "is not just to dis-
arm Saddam. It is to reform a whole part of the world . . . What the U.S.
needs in the Arab world is not an exit strategy but an entry strategy. Iraq
is the beckoning door . . ." Krauthammer frankly named the targets of the
neo-conservative war policy: "Iran, Saudi Arabia, Syria and beyond.""
In truth, published evidence indicates that the government of Israel
did indeed desire a U.S. assault upon Iraq — as a first step toward addi-
tional action against other perceived enemies of the state of Israel. On
February 18, 2003, the Israeli newspaper, Ha'aretz, reported that Israeli
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon was calling for the United States to move on
Iran, Libya and Syria after what was presumed to be the successful
destruction of Iraq by the United States — a view no different than that
expressed by the aforementioned Krauthammer.
Sharon said: "These are irresponsible states, which must be disarmed
of weapons of mass destruction, and a successful American move in Iraq
as a model will make that easier to achieve." The Israeli prime minister
told a visiting delegation of American congressmen that "the American
action [against Iraq] is of vital importance ."'''
The Israeli newspaper also reported that in meetings with Sharon and
other Israeli officials, U.S. Undersecretary of State John Bolton — one of
the key "neo-conservatives" inside the Bush administration who had been
promoting war against Iraq — had said, in the Israeli newspaper's words,
that Bolton felt that after Iraq had been dealt with "it would be necessary
thereafter to deal with threats from Syria, Iran and North Korea."'*
In addition, on Feb. 27, 2003, The New York Times freely reported that
Israel not only advocated a U.S. war on Iraq but that Israel also believed
that, ultimately, the war should be expanded to other nations perceived to
be threats to Israel. The Times stated:
Many in Israel are so certain of tlie riglitness of a war on Iraq tliat officials are
already thinking past that conflict to urge a continued, assertive American role in
the Middle East. Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz told members of the Conference
of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations last week that after Iraq,
the United States should generate "political, economic, diplomatic pressure" on
Iran. "We have great interest in shaping the Middle East the day after" a war, he
said. Israel regards Iran and Syria as greater threats and is hoping that once
Saddam Hussein is dispensed with, the dominoes will start to tumble."
And while there were American Jews, acting independently of the
established Jewish community leadership organizations, who opposed the
war against Iraq, there is no question that elite American Jewish organi-
zations closely tied to Israeli intelligence and the government of Israel
were firmly behind the drive for war. Those organizations were acting as
Jewish organizations, purporting to represent all Jewish Americans when
in fact they did not.
After the war erupted, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) of B'nai
B'rith — described by critics as a propaganda arm of Israel's clandestine
services, the Mossad — issued a statement. It declared: "We express our
support for the United States Government in its effort to stop Iraqi
President Saddam Hussein and the danger he poses to the stability and
safety of the region. The need to stop Saddam Hussein is clear.''^"
10 Michael Collins Piper
CRITICS RISE UP IN AMERICA
However, while the Israeli leadership and their neo-conservative
allies were calling for war, there were many Americans of all races,
creeds and colors who were standing up and declaring their opposition.
In the months of debate leading up to the American attack on Iraq,
Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) emerged as perhaps the most outspoken
and articulate congressional critic of the proposed war. He sounded out
multiple arguments against the war, ruling it totally unfounded and count-
er to all traditional American policy.'
Unilateral military action by the United States against Iraq is unjustified,
unwarranted, and illegal. . . .
Unilateral action on the part of the United States, or in partnership with Great
Britain, would for the first time set our nation on the bloodstained path of aggres-
sive war, a sacrilege upon the memory of those who fought to defend this coun-
try. America's moral authority would be undermined throughout the world. It
would destabilize the entire Persian Gulf and Middle East region . . .
Policies of aggression are not worthy of any nation with a democratic tradi-
tion, let alone a nation of people who love liberty and whose sons and daughters
sacrifice to maintain that democracy.
The question is not whether or not America has the military power to destroy
Saddam Hussein and Iraq. The question is whether we destroy something essential
in this nation by asserting that America has the right to do so anytime it pleases.
America cannot and should not be the world's policeman. America cannot
and should not try to pick the leaders of other nations. Nor should America and
the American people be pressed into the service of international oil interests and
arms dealers . . .
If the United States proceeds with a first strike policy, then we will have
taken upon our nation a historic burden of committing a violation of internation-
al law, and we would then forfeit any moral high ground we could hope to hold.^i
Quite remarkably, even after the war actually began, Kucinich
refused to be silent, refusing to be bullied into supporting the war under
the guise of "supporting the troops" — a popular catchphrase that has his-
torically been used to convince Americans to support an unpopular war
after American troops have been formally committed to action.
Undaunted by accusations of being "unpatriotic," etc, Kucinich said:
I support the troops. But, this war is illegal and wrong. I do not support this
mission. I will not vote to fund this Administration's war in Iraq. This war is
killing our troops. This war is killing innocent Iraqi civilians. This war must end
now. It was unjust when it started two weeks ago, and is still unjust today. The
U.S. should get out now and try to save the lives of American troops and Iraqi
citizens. Ending the war now and resuming weapons inspections could salvage
world opinion of the United States. The greatest threat to the United States at this
time is terrorism, which this war will breed. ^2
Kucinich was not the only American public official to take a daring
public stand against the war — but he was certainly one of the most forth-
right and outspoken.
Just as American troops began their assault on the Arab republic, the
longest serving member of the U.S. Senate — and the former leader of the
Senate Democrats — Sen. Robert Byrd of West Virginia delivered a blis-
tering address on the Senate floor, declaring the war to be totally at odds
with traditional American policy. He said, in part:
Today I weep for my country. I have watched the events of recent months
with a heavy, heavy heart. No more is the image of America one of strong, yet
We proclaim a new doctrine of preemption which is understood by few and
feared by many. We say that the United States has the right to turn its firepower
on any corner of the globe which might be suspect in the war on terrorism. We
assert that right without the sanction of any international body. As a resuh, the
world has become a much more dangerous place. We flaunt our superpower sta-
tus with arrogance.
When did we become a nation which ignores and berates our friends? When
did we decide to risk undermining international order by adopting a radical and
doctrinaire approach to using our awesome military might? How can we aban-
don diplomatic efforts when the turmoil in the world cries out for diplomacy?23
Clearly, although the neo-conservatives hardly reflected the thinking
of many Americans of many political persuasions, they did indeed reflect
a particular brand of philosophy and one indubitably bound up with the
hard-line imperial agenda of Israel's Likud.
And with that in mind, it is appropriate to begin examining the nature
of the neo-conservative network that rules the roost in official Washington
under the administration of George W. Bush.
12 Michael Collins Piper
THE NEO-CONSERVATIVE NETWORK
On December 13, 2002, Counterpunch magazine, published by mav-
erick Irish-born American-based journalist Alexander Cockburn, featured
an article raising the questions of "the Bush administration's dual loyal-
ties" and provided a fascinating overview of the neo-conservative net-
work that ultimately led America to war. The authors were Bill and
Kathleen Christison, a husband-and-wife team of former veteran U.S.
Central Intelligence Agency analysts. They cited the Israeli sympathies of
top neo-conservative policy makers inside the Bush administration, point-
ing out that — indeed — these neo-conservatives were closely aligned with
the ideology of the Likud bloc in Israel. Their summary of the "cast of
characters" among the neo-conservatives is precise and worth noting:
Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz leads the pack. He was a pro-
tege of Richard Perle, who heads the prominent Pentagon advisory body, the
Defense Policy Board. Many of today's neo-conservatives, including Perle, are
the intellectual progeny of the late Senator Henry "Scoop" Jackson, a strong
defense hawk and one of Israel's most strident congressional supporters in the
Wolfowitz in turn is the mentor of Lewis "Scooter" Libby, now Vice
President Cheney's chief of staff who was first a student of Wolfowitz and later
a subordinate during the 1980s in both the State and the Defense Departments.
Another Perle protege is Douglas Feith, who is currently undersecretary of
defense for policy, the department's number-three man, and has worked closely
with Perle both as a lobbyist for Turkey and in co-authoring strategy papers for
right-wing Israeli governments.
Assistant Secretaries Peter Rodman and Dov Zakheim, old hands from the
Reagan administration when the neo-cons first flourished, fill out the subcabinet
ranks at Defense. At lower levels, the Israel and the Syria/Lebanon desk officers
at Defense are imports from the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, a
think tank spun off from the pro-Israel lobby organization, AIPAC.
Neo-conservatives have not made many inroads at the State Department,
except for John Bolton, an American Enterprise Institute hawk and Israeli pro-
ponent who is said to have been forced on a reluctant Colin Powell as undersec-
retary for arms control. Bolton's special assistant is David Wurmser, who wrote
and/or co-authored with Perle and Feith at least two strategy papers for Israeli
Prime Minister Netanyahu in 1996.
Wurmser's wife, Meyrav Wurmser, is a co-founder of the media- watch web-
site MEMRI (Middle East Media Research Institute), which is ran by retired
Israeli military and intelligence officers and specializes in translating and wide-
ly circulating Arab media and statements by Arab leaders. A recent investigation
by The Guardian of London found that MEMRI's translations are skewed by
being highly selective. Although it inevitably translates and circulates the most
extreme of Arab statements, it ignores moderate Arab commentary and extrem-
ist Hebrew statements.
In the vice president's office, Cheney has established his own personal
national security staff, run by aides known to be very pro-Israel. The deputy
director of the staff, John Hannah, is a former fellow of the Israeli-oriented
On the National Security Council staff, the newly appointed director of
Middle East affairs is Elliott Abrams, who came to prominence after pleading
guilty to withholding information from Congress during the Iran-contra scandal
(and was pardoned by President Bush the elder) and who has long been a vocal
proponent of right-wing Israeli positions. Putting him in a key policymaking
position on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict is like entrusting the henhouse to a
Probably the most important organization, in terms of its influence on Bush
administration policy formulation, is the Jewish Institute for National Security
Affairs (JINSA). Formed after the 1973 Arab-IsraeU war specifically to bring
Israel's security concerns to the attention of U.S. policymakers and concentrat-
ing also on broad defense issues, the extremely hawkish, right-wing JINSA has
always had a high-powered board able to place its members inside conservative
U.S. administrations. Cheney, Bolton, and Feith were members until they entered
the Bush administration. Several lower level JINSA functionaries are now work-
ing in the Defense Department.
Wolfowitz himself has been circumspect in public, writing primarily about
broader strategic issues rather than about Israel specifically or even the Middle
East, but it is clear that at bottom Israel is a major interest and may be the prin-
cipal reason for his near obsession with the effort, of which he is the primary
spearhead, to dump Saddam Hussein, remake the Iraqi government in an
American image, and then further redraw the Middle East map by accomplish-
ing the same goals in Syria, Iran, and perhaps other countries.
But his interest in Israel always crops up. Even profiles that downplay his
attachment to Israel nonetheless always mention the influence the Holocaust, in
which several of his family perished, has had on his thinking. One source inside
the administration has described him frankly as "over-the-top crazy when it
comes to Israel." Although this probably accurately describes most of the rest of
the neo-con coterie, and Wolfowitz is guilty at least by association, he is actual-
ly more complex and nuanced than this.^^
1 4 Michael Co l l in s Pip e r
The Christisons pointed out that a New York Times Magazine profile
of Wolfowitz by the Times' Bill Keller cites critics who say that "Israel
exercises a powerfiil gravitational pull on the man"25 and notes that as a
teenager Wolfowitz lived in Israel during his mathematician father's sab-
batical semester there. In addition, his sister is married to an Israeli.
Keller even somewhat reluctantly acknowledges the accuracy of one char-
acterization of Wolfowitz as "Israel-centric." However, the Christisons
note, "Keller goes through considerable contortions to shun what he calls
'the offensive suggestion of dual loyalty' and in the process makes one
wonder if he is protesting too much.""
So the facts about the neo-conservative clique governing Bush admin-
istration policies are very clear. However, much of the mainstream media
in America initially hesitated to emphasize the remarkable linkage and
longtime associations of this clique of like-minded political power bro-
kers. The independent media in America — such as the Washington-based
American Free Press, among the foremost — that did dare to mention the
prominent role of the "neo-cons" were often attacked as "conspiracy the-
orists" and even as "anti-Semites," among many similar terms often used
to confuse the issue and thereby redirect attention away from the intrigues
of Israel and its American lobby.
THE TRUTH EMERGES IN THE US MEDIA
Nonetheless, once the long-planned "neo-conservative"-orchestrated
war against Iraq was safely under way, a front-page article in the March
21, 2003 issue of the pro-war Wall Street Journal admitted the truth. The
headline in the article was straightforward: "A New Mideast — President's
Dream: Changing Not Just Regime but a Region. A Pro-U.S., Democratic
Area Is a Goal That Has Israeli and Neo-Conservative Roots." The article
began by declaring frankly: "As he sends American troops and planes into
Iraq, President Bush has in mind more than changing a country. His
dream is make the entire Middle East a different place, and one safer for
The article proceeded to describe the power of the pro-war neo-con-
servative network surrounding Richard Perle and his collaborator,
William Kristol. The article summarized the events leading up to the deci-
sion by President Bush to wage war against Iraq and the role of the neo-
conservatives in that process.
Just three days later, on March 24, 2003, the New York Times pub-
lished a similar overview, declaring that the doctrine of preemptive war
advocated by the neo-conservatives had its roots in the early 1990s.
(However, as we shall see, the overall neo-conservative agenda goes back
much further than that.) The Times article cited an un-named administra-
tion official as saying of the Iraq war: "This is just the beginning ."^s
THE EX-COMMUNISTS BECOME NEO-CONSERVATIVES
To understand the political orientation of the "neo-conservatives" and
their agenda, it is critical to recognize not only the important role played
today by the aforementioned William Kristol but also that of his father
and mother and their associates who are central to the story of the devel-
opment of the neo-conservative power bloc in America.
Although today Kristol is perhaps the best known of the neo-conser-
vative voices in the media, he is much more than that. Not only is the
chief public relations strategist — some might say "propagandist" — for the
neo-conservatives, but he is also the scion of a powerful husband-and-
wife team of American Jewish writers — self-described "ex-
Trotskyites" — Irving Kristol and Gertrude Himmelfarb. The senior
Kristol — along with a handful of other like-minded thinkers — is general-
ly hailed as the primary founding force behind the neo-conservative
According to the American Jewish weekly. Forward, the small "most-
ly Jewish"" group of "New York Intellectuals"'" operating in the senior
Kristol's sphere of influence were "known to insiders as "The
Family.' "'' — a designation that suggests to those schooled in the intrigues
of the Cold War, perhaps some cryptic, almost cult-like bond, even a clas-
sic communist "cell."
And indeed, there is a Cold War connection to Kristol and "The
Family," for — during the period from the 1930s to the 1950s — they were
disciples of Leon Trotsky, the Bolshevik revolutionary, and arch critics of
Trotsky's fierce rival, Josef Stalin, who emerged as leader of the Soviet
Union after forcing Trotsky into exile. However, as years passed, starting
16 Michael Collins Piper
in the late 1950s and especially in the 1960s, their political philosophy
began, it is said, to "evolve." Yet, there are those who would say that the
ex-Trotskyites are anything but "ex" at all; that, instead, they remain tried
and true Trotskyites who have adapted their traditional philosophy to
modern concerns, events, and political realities.
Michael Lind, author of a new biography of President George W.
Bush, has noted the origins of this tightly-knit core then surrounding
Kristol and in years to come and explains their shift in viewpoint:
Neo-conservatives were not traditional conservative Republicans. Most had
been liberal or leftist Democrats; some had originally been Marxists. Many were
Jewish and had broken with the Democratic left because of leftist hostility to
Israel's occupation of Arab land after 1967 and the hostility of many Black
Power militants to both Jewish-Americans and Israel. Ronald Reagan was the
first Republican president that many neo-conservatives had voted for.
While the foreign policy of the traditional Republican establishment reflect-
ed the fear of international disorder of the business elite, neo-conservative strat-
egy reflected the crusading ideological fervor of former Wilsonian liberals [refer-
ring to former American President Woodrow Wilson who was a proponent of
American interventionism abroad] and former Marxist revolutionaries, com-
bined, in the case of many Jewish neo-conservatives, with an emotional ethnic
commitment to the well-being of Israel.32
ISRAEL AND THE NEO-CONSERVATIVES
American Jewish scholar, Benjamin Ginsberg, has described the cen-
tral role of Israel's security in the thinking of the neo-conservatives and
on their political activities during the last quarter of the 20th century:
Neo-conservative Jewish intellectuals were instrumental during the 1970s and
1980s in developing justifications for increased defense spending, as well as linking
American military aid to Israel to the more general American effort to contain the
Israel was portrayed as an American "strategic asset" that could play an impor-
tant role in containing Soviet expansion into the Middle East.
A number of Jewish neo-conservatives became active in [lobbying] for increased
levels of defense spending and the strengthening of America's defense capabilities
against what they asserted was a heightened threat of Soviet expansionism.^^
A similar, although less friendly, assessment of the neo-conservatives
was put forth in 1986 by famed American novelist Gore Vidal.
Responding to allegations that he (Vidal) was "anti-Semitic" because of
his criticism of the unusual degree to which American Jewish "neo-con-
servatives" were attached to Israel — more so than to America — Vidal
called the neo-conservatives "empire lovers" and charged that there was
one reason why these ex-Trotskyites were now so enamored of American
In order to get [United States] Treasury money for Israel (last year $3 bil-
lion), pro-Israel lobbyists must see to it that America's "the Russians are com-
ing" squads are in place so that they can continue to frighten the American peo-
ple into spending enormous sums for "defense," which also means the support of
Israel in its never-ending wars against just about everyone. To make sure that
nearly a third of the Federal budget goes to the Pentagon and Israel, it is neces-
sary for the pro-Israel lobbyists to make common cause with our lunatic right.34
At the time, however, Vidal had no idea how powerful the neo-con-
servatives would ultimately become. But, Vidal remains an outspoken
critic of U.S. and Israeli imperialism, and is one of the most highly
regarded English-language novelists in the world today.
Whatever their recognition among "intellectual" circles, the "neo-
conservative" elements were virtual strangers (and still remain so) to the
broad audience of American citizens. In fact, probably the first time the
term "neo-conservative" was introduced to a wide-ranging national
American audience was in the Nov. 7, 1977 issue of Newsweek, published
by the same company that publishes The Washington Post newspaper.
By 1979, the first full-length book study of the "neo-conservatives"
was issued by author Peter Steinfels. Entitled The Neo-Conservatives:
The Men Who Are Changing America 's Politics, this book described neo-
conservatism as "a distinct and powerful political outlook [that had]
recently emerged in the United States."'^
The author hailed Irving Kristol, father of William Kristol, as "the
standard bearer of neo-conservatism"' ^ and focused largely on Kristol and
fellow intellectuals who were shaping the neo-conservative point of view.
The book painted neo-conservatism as a newly-developing philoso-
phy and largely focused on its domestic political outlook. Remarkably,
1 8 Michael Co l l in s Pip e r
very little of the book was even devoted to the neo-conservative foreign
policy agenda, despite the fact that the neo-conservatives were, from the
beginning, heavily focused on foreign policy. However, Steinfels did note
that the neo-conservatives were, quite naturally, as ex-Trotskyites, hostile
to the Soviet Union of Josef Stalin and his legacy.
However, the author did note the fact that there were many rumors
swirling around Kristol, specifically the allegation that as far back as the
1950s, Kristol had been receiving subsidies from the American Central
Intelligence Agency (CIA).
THE CIA AND THE NEO-CONSERVATIVES
In fact, as a far more recent volume. The Cultural Cold War: The CIA
and the World of Arts and Letters, by Frances Stonor Saunders reveals,
the circles in which Kristol was a key player — surrounding a group
known as the Congress for Cultural Freedom (which existed from 1950 to
1967) and the American Committee for Cultural Freedom (which existed
from 1950 to 1957) — were indeed funded by the CIA. The author exhaus-
tively investigated the activities of Kristol and his associates and has con-
firmed that Kristol owed much of his early fame and publicity to support
from American intelligence. ^^
According to a 1986 study by Sidney Blumenthal, a Jewish-American
reporter for The Washington Post who later became a top advisor to
President Bill Clinton, Irving Kristol was known as "the Godfather" of
the neo-conservative movement to whom others went seeking sinecures
and funding. Kristol "could arrange offers from institutes and foundations
[so lucrative] that no conservative would refuse."
One of Kristol's proteges, Jude Wanniski — who has since largely bro-
ken with the "neo-cons" — was quoted as describing Kristol as "the invis-
ible hand" behind the neo-conservative movement.^* Blumenthal noted
that Kristol's power was such that it could be compared to "a circuitry of
influence that blinks like a Christmas tree when he plugs in."^' In fact,
through his magazines. The National Interest and The Public Interest,
Kristol has expanded his influence, not only within Republican Party
ranks but within the public arena as a whole.
Noting the Trots kyite origins of the "neo-conservatives," Sidney
Blumenthal assessed the nature of the "neo-conservative" migration
into — some might say "invasion of — the Republican Party, saying: "The
neo-conservatives are the Trotskyites of Reaganism, and Kristol is a
Trotskyite transmuted into a man of the right."4o
All of this having been noted for the record, the fact is that today,
William Kristol — son of neo-conservative "godfather" Irving Kristol — is
carrying on the family's legacy, one that reaches back to the internecine
philosophical struggles of the Bolshevik era and the Cold War between
the United States and the Soviet Union that followed. The younger Kristol
is, beyond any question, in his own right, one of the most powerful opin-
ion-makers on the face of the planet today.
THE MURDOCH CONNECTION
Acting as a self-appointed "conservative leader," Kristol, whom, as
we have noted, is publisher and editor of billionaire Rupert Murdoch's
Weekly Standard magazine, has consistently called for U.S. intervention
abroad, particularly as a means to advance the interests of the state of
Israel — a stand congruent with Murdoch's own known sympathies for the
hard-line Likud bloc in Israel. (Murdoch himself is of partial Jewish
descent, from his mother's side, although this detail has often gone un-
mentioned in even "mainstream" accounts citing Murdoch's infatuation
with the Zionist cause.)
Over the years a variety of critics have alleged that Kristol's sponsor,
Murdoch, is essentially a long-time media representative — a highly-paid
"front man" — for the combined forces of the Rothschild, Bronfman and
Oppenheimer families who, with Murdoch, were referred to by critics as
far back as the early 1980s as "The Billionaire Gang of Four."
This clique of billionaires are tied together not only by a mutual asso-
ciation in international financial affairs but also by their Jewish heritage
and a devotion to promoting the interests of the state of Israel. They are
also widening their control and influence over the American media with
Murdoch's operations being perhaps the most public.
20 Michael Collins Piper
KRISTOL'S MEN IN THE BUSH WHITE HOUSE
In fact, Kristol's personal tentacles inside all reaches of the Bush
administration are immense. On March 19, 2002 The Washington Post
described Kristol's wide-ranging and intimate ties to key White House
insiders. Noting that one Joseph Shattan had been hired as a speechwriter
for the president, the Post added, pointedly:
Shattan, who worked for Kristol when he was Vice President Dan Quayle's
chief of staff, will join Bush speechwriter Matthew Scully and [Vice President]
Cheney speechwriter John McConnell, both of whom also worked under Kristol
on the Quayle staff. Fellow Bush speechwriter Peter Wehner worked for Kristol
when he was chief of staff to then-Education Secretary William Bennett [himself
a protege of Kristol's father, Irving Kristol], while National Security Council
speechwriter Matthew Rees worked for Kristol at The Weekly StandardA^
In effect, many of the very persons writing the official speeches and
public statements for not only the president and the vice president, but
also other key foreign policy makers, owed their patronage to Kristol.
However, the Post noted, Kristol's influence, went beyond that. Others
inside the Bush administration also owed their loyalty to Kristol:
Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham is a Kristol acolyte from the Quayle
days while drug control policy chief John Walters worked under Kristol at the
Education Department. Jay Lefkowitz, the new director of Bush's Domestic
Policy Council, was Kristol's lawyer. Other Kristol pals include National
Security Council Director Elliott Abrams, Cheney Chief of Staff I. Lewis
"Scooter" Libby, Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, Undersecretary of
State John Bolton and Leon Kass, the head of Bush's bioethics panel. The tenta-
cles reach into [Bush's personal inner circle]: AI Hubbard, a close Bush friend,
was Kristol's deputy on the Quayle staff. ''^
What makes all of this so particularly remarkable is that Kristol him-
self backed Bush's Republican primary opponent, Arizona Sen. John
McCain, a feverish supporter of Israel, in the 2000 presidential campaign.
As such, it might be said, Kristol — initially, perhaps, somewhat of an
"outsider" in Bush circles — very much became an "insider" — and one
with incredible and un-rivaled influence.
One of Kristol's critics noted the massive promotion that Kristol
received in the American media, commenting as early as 1996 that Kristol
was, "by quite some distance, the most widely quoted private citizen in
the media [and, as a consequence] the most important strategist in the
Republican Party ."43
What this means, essentially, is that when the major American media
wanted to promote a particular idea or viewpoint, newspaper reporters
and broadcast journalists turned to Kristol for his "neo-conservative"
point of view — often to the exclusion of better-known, more respected,
and more knowledgeable individuals. Some say that this is no coinci-
dence, considering what is perceived to be a strong pro-Israel bias on the
part of the major media.
With William Kristol acting as an articulate and forceful media func-
tionary, the "neo-conservative" forces inside the Bush administration
have had a powerful ally who, in turn, has extremely lucrative
resources — and international connections of influence — supporting him.
As such, in the wake of the 9-11 terrorist attacks, when the Bush
administration geared up to respond to the assault on America, Kristol
and his neo-conservative forces began rallying to broaden the U.S.
response against the prime suspect. Islamic fundamentalist leader Osama
bin Laden, into an all-out assault on the Arab and Muslim worlds.
Initially, Secretary of State Colin Powell seemed to be the one well-
known figure in the Bush administration who stood in the way of an
American imperial policy hinging on a war against Iraq.
Joined by the military's Joint Chiefs of Staff in urging a cautious
approach to the crisis, Powell was being confronted inside the Bush
administration by a tightly-knit group of hard-driving warmongers trying
to run roughshod over the administration's stated policy and determined
to subvert it for their own ends.
While Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz was the Israeli
lobby's key point man inside the Bush administration pushing for an all-
out assault on key Arab states such as Iraq and Syria — not to mention the
Islamic Republic of Iran — his efforts were being ably promoted by the
efforts of William Kristol and his "neo-conservative" political and propa-
22 Michael Collins Piper
KISSINGER AND KRISTOL
In its Sept. 24, 2001 issue, the Washington-based American Free
Press gave a capsule summary of Kristol's background, noting that he is
a member of the secretive Bilderberg group, funded jointly by the
Rockefeller and Rothschild financial empires. Kristol is also a member of
the Council on Foreign Relations, which is perhaps "the" elite American
policy making group — the American affiliate of the Rothschild-funded
London-based Royal Institute of International Affairs.
An investigation by the American Free Press uncovered further
details about the Kristol family's wide-ranging contacts. With former
Secretary of State Henry Kissinger serving on their board of directors, the
Kristols operate a company known as National Affairs, Inc., which issues
two publications. The National Interest and The Public Interest.
Much of their company's funding comes from the Lynde and Harry
Bradley Foundation, with which the younger Kristol was previously asso-
ciated. In fact, this foundation — as we'll see further — is known for its
generous funding of anti-Arab and anti-Islamic propaganda causes.
While, as noted, Irving Kristol has long been a key player inside the
influential "neo-conservative" American Enterprise Institute, his son
William Kristol maintained at least two other primary public relations
outlets of his own:
1) Empower America, co-founded by Kristol with two former
Congressmen, Jack Kemp (R-N.Y.) and Vin Weber (R-Minn.), and for-
mer Education Secretary William Bennett — three non-Jews, incidental-
ly — all known for their enthusiastic and loudly and often stated devotion
to the pro-Israel cause; and
2) Kristol's more recent venture, the newly-formed Project for the
New American Century, an unabashedly internationalist pressure group
calling for the exercise of American military might abroad, particularly in
pursuit of measures designed to advance the interests of Israel.
Just one week after the 9-1 1 terrorist attack on the United States — in
conjunction with neo-conservative Deputy Defense Secretary Paul
Wolfowitz's campaign inside the Bush administration to broaden the war
against terrorism to include efforts to crush Arab and Islamic states that
are perceived by Israel to be its enemies — William Kristol issued a call to
arms signed by a host of foreign policy luminaries, echoing Wolfowitz.
These luminaries, in turn, used their connections through the academic,
media and policy-making establishments to pressure the Bush adminis-
tration for the action Wolfowitz demanded.
THE TANGLED WEB OF RICHARD PERLE
Most influential among Kristol's collaborators who signed that letter
is the ubiquitous Richard Perle, the former Reagan era assistant secretary
of defense for international security policy. In fact, Perle is perhaps the
singular driving force behind a closely-knit group (including Wolfowitz)
whose origins in the modern-day national security establishment go back
to the 1970s when Perle was a top aide to the late Sen. Henry M. Jackson
Perle and one of his closest collaborators, Stephen J. Bryen, first
appeared on the Washington scene as highly influential U.S. Senate
staffers. Perle was a top aide to then-Sen. Jackson, chairman of the piv-
otal Senate Armed Services Committee. Bryen was a senior aide to then-
Sen. Clifford Case (R-N.J.), a high-ranking GOP member of the Senate
Foreign Relations Committee.
Both Jackson and Case were known as ardent public advocates for
Israel. But behind the scenes, their two assistants were busy providing
"special services" to the tiny, yet powerful. Middle East state.
In 1970, after the National Security Council ordered a wiretap of the
Israeli Embassy in Washington, Perle was revealed to be passing classi-
fied information to an officer of the Israeli embassy. Although then-CIA
Director Stansfield Turner angrily demanded that Jackson fire Perle,
Jackson refused, lending fuel to the fire of long-standing speculation that
the Israeli lobby had a "hold" over the veteran lawmaker.
By 1975 Jewish-American journalist Stephen Isaacs, a writer for The
Washington Post, was noting in his book, Jews and American Politics, that
Perle — along with another top Jewish congressional staff member, Morris
Amitay, who later headed the American Israel Public Affairs Committee,
or AIPAC, a top lobby for Israel — "command[ed] a tiny army of
Semitophiles on Capitol Hill and direct Jewish power in behalf of Jewish
24 Michael Collins Piper
THE TEAM B AFFAIR
But Perle's influence reached far beyond the halls of Congress. Not
only was he a key "inside" player on behalf of the Israeli lobby on Capitol
Hill, but during the mid-1970s he also played a critical part in the selec-
tion of a formal body — officially known as "Team B" — that functioned as
a purportedly "independent" advisory council on intelligence estimates
relating to Soviet aims and capabilities.
In fact, the members of Team B were bound by their determination to
make every aspect of U.S. foreign policy geared toward policies that
would prove beneficial to Israel.
To understand what is happening in our world today as a consequence
of the rule of the neo-conservatives in official Washington, it is critical to
understand the geopolitical events surrounding the history of the group
known as Team B.
Although Team B was debated and discussed at the highest levels, it
was not until the late Andrew St. George, an eminent international corre-
spondent, formerly associated with Life magazine, began writing about its
history in the pages of a maverick national weekly newspaper The
Spotlight, that the story of Team B reached a widespread audience.
Team B emerged in the mid-1970s at which time hawkish factions in
the Israeli government were lobbying hard in Washington for more arms
aid and cash infusions through the U.S. foreign aid program. Loyal sup-
porters of Israel such as Sen. Jackson argued that Israel needed more mil-
itary might to protect the Middle East against "Soviet aggression" — an
argument that delighted hard-line anti-communists in both political par-
ties. Israel was playing the "Soviet card" to the utmost.
The Israelis were arguing vehemently against detente for they feared
that cooperation between the United States and the Soviet Union could
result in joint actions by the two super-powers that could prove inimical
to Israeli interests.
As such, it was in 1974 that University of Chicago Professor Albert
Wohlstetter accused the CIA of systematically underestimating Soviet
missile deployment. Wohlstetter — a widely known architect of U.S.
nuclear strategy — also happened to be Richard Perle's longtime intellec-
tual mentor.45 In fact, the relationship was even closer: growing up in Los
Angeles, Perle was a high school friend of Wohlstetter's daughter.
Based largely on Wohlstetter's opening gun, Perle and other pro-
Israel activists on Capitol Hill and in official Washington began attacking
the CIA and demanding additional inquiry into the CIA's analysis of
Soviet strength. Perle used the offices of Sen. Jackson — who was angling
for the Democratic Party's presidential nomination in 1976, primarily
financed by American Jewish backers — as the "headquarters" for the
attack on the CIA.
However, U.S. intelligence analysts were scoffing at Israel's alarmist
cries. Led by senior analysts in the Office of National Estimates, they
reassured the White House that, at least for the moment, the Soviets had
neither the intent nor the capability to attack a major target of vital U.S.
interest, such as the oil-rich Gulf states.
Nonetheless, Israel's Washington allies maneuvered in an effort to
counter-balance the findings of the Office of National Estimates. Under
political pressure from Senator Jackson and other supporters of Israel,
President Gerald Ford agreed in mid- 1976 (while George Bush was serv-
ing as CIA director) to institute a so-called "audit" of intelligence data
provided by the CIA's own National Intelligence Officers (soon to be
called the "A-Team"] by a committee of "independent" experts — known
as the "B-Team."
However, the newly-established and ostensibly "independent"
group — B-Team — headed by Harvard professor Richard Pipes, a
Russian-born devotee of the Zionist cause, became an outpost of Israeli
(Years later Pipes' son, Daniel Pipes, would emerge as one of the neo-
conservative network's leading anti-Arab and anti-Muslim propagandists,
operating a well-funded think tank, the Middle East Institute — operating
closely with Perle. In the summer of 2003, President George W. Bush
named the younger Pipes to the federally-sponsored U.S. Peace Institute,
despite the widespread objections of many persons who viewed Pipes to
be a bigoted hate-monger with a single-minded political agenda.)
In any case, Richard Perle was largely responsible for the selection of
the Team B membership. Paul Wolfowitz was among those selected for
Team B because of Perle's recommendation. Likewise with veteran diplo-
mat Paul Nitze, among other prominent members of the team selected.
26 Michael Collins Piper
Anne Hessing Cahn, a later student of the Team B affair, has written
that "There was an almost incestuous closeness among most of the B
Team members ,"46 quoting Perle as saying, that "The Jewish neo-conser-
vative connection sprang from that period of worries about detente and
Israel."^' Robert Bowie, former CIA deputy director for national intelli-
gence, described the efforts of Team B as "a fight for the soul of the
Republican party, for getting control of foreign policy within one branch
of the party."*'*
In the meantime, John Paisley, recently retired from the CIA, was
appointed by CIA Director Bush to act as the CIA's liaison between the
CIA's own in-house "Team A" and the Israeli -influenced "Team B."
Meade Rowing ton, a former U.S. counterintelligence analyst quoted by
Andrew St. George in The Spotlight on Feb. 5, 1996 noted: "It soon
became clear to Paisley that these cosmopolitan intellectuals were simply
trying to discredit the CIA's recommendations and replace them with the
alarmist view of Soviet intentions favored by Israeli estimators."*'
By early 1978 the B-Team had finished its review of the CIA's pro-
cedures and programs and issued a lengthy report that was harshly criti-
cal of almost every finding U.S. intelligence had made in previous years
about Soviet military power and its intended uses.
The Israeli-influenced B-Team report said that the Soviets were
secretly developing a so-called "first-strike" capability, because Soviet
strategic doctrine assumed that such a sneak attack would make them the
winners of a nuclear exchange with the United States. The B-Team dis-
missed the estimates of analysts who held that Moscow was unlikely to
start a nuclear conflict unless attacked. In the end, of course, the B-Team
findings prevailed and the direct consequence was that there was a virtu-
al revival of the arms race and a massive new infusion of U.S. military and
other aid to Israel during the 1980s.
Drawing on what critics charged (and which proved to be) fraudulent
estimates provided by Israeli intelligence — the foundation of the B-
Team's report was the warning that the Soviet Union was fast running out
of its petroleum supplies.
As a consequence, the B-Team forecast that beginning in 1980 Soviet
oil production would suffer critical shortfalls, forcing Moscow to import
as much as 4.5 million barrels a day for its essential needs. Starved for
oil — the Israeli disinformation claimed — the Soviets would invade Iran or
another oil-rich Gulf state even if it meant a nuclear confrontation with
the United States.
Although the team's final report was secret, with access reserved for
a handful of government leaders, John Paisley reportedly got his hands on
a copy of the report in the summer of 1978 and set to work writing a
detailed critique that would destroy this Israeli disinformation. But
Paisley was murdered before he could ever complete his task.
According to Richard Clement, who headed the Interagency
Committee on Counter- Terrorism during the Reagan administration: "The
Israelis had no compunction about 'terminating' key American intelligence
officials who threatened to blow the whistle on them. Those of us familiar
with the case of Paisley know that he was killed by the Mossad. But no one,
not even in Congress, wants to stand up and say so publicly."5o
Solid evidence compiled over the years by a variety of independent
critical researchers in and out of government — many of them Jewish, by
the way — indicates that the Zionist intriguers on Team B did indeed exag-
gerate Soviet imperial designs and military strategy as Paisley and other
unbiased analysts contended.
TEAM B MOVES TO TAKE COMMAND
In the end, the behind-the-scenes Team B experiment inside the upper
ranks of the US intelligence community laid the groundwork for the mod-
ern-day "neo-conservative" network that ultimately assumed control of
the Bush administration beginning in 2001.
Writing in his scholarly (if vaguely -admiring) study of the neo-con-
servatives — The Rise of Neoconservatism: Intellectuals and Foreign
Ajfairs — John Ehrman reports that the rejuvenation of the Cold War-era
"blue ribbon" group known as the Committee on the Present Danger was
a direct outgrowth of the Team B process, essentially a public relations
approach to disseminating the Team B geopolitical outlook.^'
Professor Benjamin Ginsberg notes in his history. The Fatal
Embrace: Jews & the State, a study of the Jewish role in American polit-
ical affairs, that veteran diplomat Paul Nitze of "Team B" fame and for-
mer Under Secretary of State Eugene Rostow were among the founders
28 Michael Collins Piper
of the new Committee, along with former Treasury Secretary Charls
Walker who was then serving as a lobbyist for defense contracting firms
that helped supply financing for the committee. The committee's general
counsel was Max Kampelman, a high-powered Washington figure known
as a key player in the Israeli lobby. Ginsberg candidly described the
nature of the organization:
The Committee on the Present Danger, in effect, was an alliance between
cold warriors . . . who believed in the need to contain the Soviet Union . . . the
defense industry . . . which had an obvious pecuniary interest in heightened lev-
els of defense spending, and pro-Israel forces who had come to see high levels
of defense spending and an interventionist U.S. foreign policy as essential to
Israel's survival and who hoped to make support for Israel an element of
America's effort to contain the Soviet Union.
Each of these allies had a stake in asserting that Soviet expansion represent-
ed a "clear and present danger" to the United States. For cold warriors, this was
political gospel as well as a route through which they hoped to return to power
in the bureaucracy. For the defense industry, this was the key to high profits. For
the Israel lobby, opposition to the USSR was a rubric tlirough which to justify
the expansion of American military and economic assistance to Israel.^^
Ginsberg pointed out that during the 1980 election campaign, the members
of the committee became active in Ronald Reagan's presidential election effort
and thus, the committee "became the vehicle through which the alliance of cold
warriors, defense contractors, and pro-Israel groups became part of the Reagan
coalition and gained access to the govemment."^^
Ultimately, as noted by American historian, Richard Gid Powers,
Reagan brought no less than sixty members of the Committee into his
administration, including its founders, Paul Nitze and Eugene Rostow,
who were placed in the most critical arms control positions."
The New York Times went so far as to assert that the Committee's
influence amounted to "a virtual takeover of the nation's national securi-
At the time the Reagan administration assumed office, many of the
same personalities involved in the activities of the Committee on the
Present Danger established yet another "blue ribbon" committee with
motivations parallel to the operations of the Committee on the Present
Known as the Committee for a Free World, this new entity, founded
by Midge Decter, wife of yet another ex-Trotskyite-turned-"neo-conser-
vative," Norman Podhoretz, included among its members such individu-
als as Elliott Abrams, Gertrude Himmelfarb (wife of Irving Kristol and
mother of William Kristol) and Michael Ledeen, all of whom, today, are
part of the "Perle-Kristol network." Notably, one of those who helped
raise funds for this committee was Donald Rumsfeld, who is now prose-
cuting the U.S. war against Iraq as Defense Secretary in the George W.
Bush administration. ■'''5
The bottom line of all of this, as Team B critic Anne Hessing Cahn
put it, is that "When Ronald Reagan got elected, Team B became, in
essence, the A Team."" And the impact of Team B's false estimates is still
affecting America into the beginning of the 21st century, not only in terms
of foreign policy, but in domestic policy as well. Ms. Cahn notes:
For more than a third of a century, perceptions about U.S. national security
were colored by the view that the Soviet Union was on the road to military supe-
riority over the United States. Neither Team B nor the multibillion dollar intelli-
gence agencies could see that the Soviet Union was dissolving from within.
For more than a third of a century, assertions of Soviet superiority created
calls for the United States to "rearm." In the 1980s, the call was heeded so thor-
oughly that the United States embarked on a trillion-dollar defense buildup.
As a result, the country neglected its schools, cities, roads and bridges, and
health care system. From the world's greatest creditor nation, the United States
became the world's greatest debtor, in order to pay for arms to counter the threat
of a nation that was collapsing. ^^
Certainly, there is no question that the institution of Team B and its
resulting impact on US policy laid the groundwork for the future drive for
power that brought the neo-conservatives (who had been groomed by
Richard Perle through the Team B process) into outright control of poli-
cy in the George W. Bush administration beginning in 2001.
And in those heady years of the Reagan era — and the rise of the Team
B group — what turned out to be a pivotal event that would have immense
future ramifications was the appointment of none other than Richard
Perle as assistant secretary of defense for international security policy and
Perle 's subsequent recruitment as his own deputy his close friend and for-
mer Capitol Hill crony, Stephen J. Bryen.
And therein lies a story in and of itself . . .
30 Michael Collins Piper
THE PERLE-BRYEN SPY SCANDAL
Although Perle and Bryen achieved immense power as high-level
political appointees in the Reagan administration, their rise was nearly
derailed by a scandal that erupted just two years prior to Reagan's elec-
tion to the presidency. A complete understanding of this scandal is criti-
cal to understanding precisely how closely wed to the government of
Israel that the Perle network truly is.
Let us begin by noting that in the era of the Team B intrigue (the mid-
1970s) — Perle left Senator Jackson's staff and began engaging in the pri-
vate arms business, setting up many lucrative deals between the Pentagon
and Soltam, one of Israel's premier weapons firms.
Meanwhile, Perle's Capitol Hill associate, Stephen J. Bryen, was
under observation by the FBI beginning as early as 1977 when he was
suspected of using his post as a Senate Foreign Relations Committee
staffer to obtain classified Pentagon information, particularly related to
Arab military matters, that the Defense Intelligence Agency suspected
Bryen was turning over to the Israelis.
Then, on March 9, 1978, Bryen was overheard in a private conversa-
tion over breakfast with four Israeli intelligence officials at the coffee
shop of the Madison Hotel in Washington. It was clear, based on the con-
tent of his conversation, that he was providing the Israeli officials with
high-level military information.
What was so amazing, however, was that Bryen (an American and a
U.S. government employee) was heard continually referring to the U.S.
government as "they" and to use the pronoun "we" when referring to
his — and the Israeli government's — position. Little did Bryen know that
an American of Arabic descent, who had been active in Arab-American
affairs and lobbying on the Middle East issue, would recognize him
(Bryen) and actually understand the sensitive nature of the conversation
that Bryen was conducting with the Israeli officials.
The Arab-American businessman, one Michael Saba, reported the
matter to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. In due course, a full-scale
FBI inquiry into Bryen evolved to the point that the Justice Department
(which oversees the FBI) assembled a 632-page file on Bryen's activities.
The U.S. Attorney handling the investigation, Joel Lisker (an American of
the Jewish faith) recommended that Bryen be indicted on felony charges
of having not only been an unregistered foreign agent for Israel but also
of having committed espionage on behalf of Israel.
The scandal finally broke (to a limited degree) in the American
media, with the liberal journal, The Nation, making the allegation that
Bryen had routinely taken orders from Zvi Rafiah, a counselor at the
Israeli Embassy. In fact, it was ultimately learned, Rafiah was not just an
embassy counselor. He was the U.S. station chief for the clandestine serv-
ices division of Israel's intelligence agency, the Mossad.
Despite all this, Bryen was not indicted. Instead, Bryen was told to
"quietly" depart from the Senate Foreign Relations Committee staff,
which he did. Appropriately, Bryen promptly set up shop in Washington,
D.C. as a publicist and lobbyist for Israel as the director of a group known
as the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA).''^
Ultimately, as we have seen, when Republican Ronald Reagan was
elected president with firm support from the neo-conservative Jewish
network, Perle and Bryen moved back into the upper ranks of the U.S.
government policy making establishment — despite the scandal.
Perle was named Assistant Secretary of Defense for International
Security Policy and quickly moved to bring in Bryen as his deputy for
international economic trade and security policy. However, Perle became
quite controversial for his own involvement with Israeli defense interests.
On April 17, 1983 The New York Times published a major story point-
ing out that there were ethics questions surrounding Perle's work for
Zoltam, the major Israeli defense firm. Precisely at the time Perle entered
the Defense Department he had accepted a $50,000 fee from Shlomo
Zabludowitz, the founder of Zoltam, for work that he had done on behalf
of the firm. Then, nearly a year later, while serving in the Defense
Department, he urged the Secretary of the U.S. Army to consider doing
business with Zabludowitz. Questions were raised as to whether this was
a violation of U.S. laws governing the ethics of public officials, but Perle
essentially escaped censure.
Ironically, similar ethics questions were raised about Perle's private
business dealings in the days leading up to — and immediately after — the
launch of the U.S. war against Iraq in March of 2003 — some 20 years
later. However, neither in 2003 (nor as previously) were serious questions
32 Michael Collins Piper
raised about the more inflammatory accusations involving possible espi-
onage by Perle and his friend and colleague Bryen on behalf of Israel.
In any event, Perle and Bryen became influential during the Reagan
administration. In 1984, Business Week magazine noted of Perle: "To
ensure that his views prevail, Perle has built up a powerful backstage net-
work of allies in Washington."6o By 1986 The Washington Post was quot-
ing a senior U.S. State Department official as saying that Perle was "the
most powerful man in the Pentagon"" — even more powerful than his
actual superior, then-Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger.
This, however, did not prevent independent newspapers such as the
aforementioned Spotlight, whose investigative journalist Andrew St.
George pioneered coverage of the Bryen affair, from attempting to bring
the matter to widespread public attention, assisted by the Arab-American
businessman, Michael Saba, who had first seen and overheard Bryen's
leak of classified information to the Israeli agents.
Nor did it prevent Saba and Arab- American organizations from con-
tinuing to lobby for a full-force inquiry into both the Bryen affair itself
and the shadowy circumstances that led to the shelving of the Justice
Department's intended prosecution of Bryen. Although Saba published a
detailed book outlining the activities of Perle and Bryen, entitled The
Armageddon Network, the Reagan administration (under pressure from
the Israeli lobby) refused to "come clean" and investigate the Bryen affair
In fact, the stench surrounding the matter became so putrid that even
a "mainstream" newspaper such as The Boston Globe was moved to assert
editorially on Aug. 28, 1986: "Stopping espionage, maintaining a balance
in relationships with Israel and its Arab neighbors, and avoiding even a
hint of Israeli interference in formulation of US policy are all crucial to
American interests in the Middle East. The Bryen case, which raised
doubts on all counts, needs to be cleaned up." '- In recent years, virtually
the only major publication to even recall the Bryen affair is the
Washington, DC-based American Free Press.
ISRAEL AND THE CHINA CARD
So it was that Perle and Bryen remained influential — and unbridled —
during their years in the Defense Department under Republican Ronald
Reagan. Yet, interestingly, during that period, despite their much per-
ceived hard-line "anti-communism," Perle and Bryen emerged as perhaps
the two chief promoters of Israel's lucrative (but largely little known)
arms exports to communist China.
On Jan. 25, 1985, the very pro-Israel Washington Times reported that
"Perle, the [Reagan] administration official most responsible for trying to
deny US weapons technology to [Soviet-bloc] communist countries is
said to favor the Israel-China arms link. Also said to favor the traffic is
Stephen Bryen . . ."
To many American conservatives — traditional anti-communists — this
was significant, particularly in light of Perle's reputation as an "anti-com-
munist." However, on May 21, 1984, Business Week magazine reported
that a congressional aide had said of Perle: "He's not a virulent anti-com-
munist; he is a virulent anti-Soviet."
At the time, Perle's critics found significance in this comment, noting
that, indeed, many of the "neo-conservatives" were, in fact, ostensibly
"reformed" Trotskyites and that, perhaps, the "neo-conservative" war
against the Soviet Union was hardly more than a continuation of an ide-
ological battle that had begun between Josef Stalin and his chief rival,
Leon Trotsky, and which continued to rage between their followers, even
after Stalin and Trotsky were no longer alive.
It may not be a coincidence that former Republican Vice President
Nelson Rockefeller once created a stir by actually calling Perle a "com-
munist."63 As cynics noted, although Rockefeller apologized, the outspo-
ken and well-informed billionaire may have known something that most
people did not.
JINSA— THE NEO-CONSERVATIVE WAR MACHINE
During the succeeding years, as Perle and Bryen continued to remain
active in pro-Israel circles in Washington, their power and influence was
heralded in The Wall Street Journal in an article entitled, "Roles of Ex-
Pentagon Officials at Jewish Group Show Clout of Cold-Warrior, Pro-
34 Michael Collins Piper
Israel Network." The article described what the Journal called a "tight lit-
tle circle [that] illustrated an enduring network of Cold War conservatives
and pro-Israel interests in Washington." Although the Cold War was over,
the Journal noted, "their political and governmental ties are a source of
influence for pro-Israeli forces. "S"*
The article related the activities of the group known as the Jewish
Institute for National Security Affairs (or JINSA), which Perle's associ-
ate, Stephen Bryen, founded just prior to serving under Perle in the
Reagan administration. (During Bryen's government hiatus, JINSA was
run by Bryen's wife Shoshana). Describing JINSA's influence, the
With little fanfare, JINSA itself has carved out a niche by both cultivating
closer U.S. -Israeli military ties and urging U.S. Jews to vote for a strong defense
at home. Building support in the Pentagon is a high priority. Under a program
called "Send a General to Israel," hundreds of thousands of dollars in tax-
deductible contributions bankroll an annual tour of Israel by retired U.S. gener-
als and admirals. They exchange views with Israeli officials and tour strategic
areas like the Golan Heights."^^
Not by coincidence JINSA today (as noted earlier) is one of the prime
movers in the "neo-conservative" circles governing policy in the Bush
administration. Not only Vice President Dick Cheney, but Deputy Under
Secretary of Defense Douglas Feith were associated — as we have seen —
with JINSA prior to assuming office.
And this brings our discussion of the early years of the neo-conser-
vative movement full circle, up to the events that occurred between Sept.
11, 2001 and the opening guns of the war against Iraq.
With his longtime friend Paul Wolfowitz working inside the Bush
administration, promoting all-out war against Israel's perceived enemies,
Perle joined William Kristol in assembling what amounts to a second-
generation version of "Team B" that is nothing less than a "War Party."
In the wake of the 9-11 attacks, Perle and Kristol hammered out a let-
ter to the president echoing Wolfowitz' call for all-out war against Iraq,
Iran and Syria, not to mention the Palestinian Hezbollah. To supplement
their effort, they called upon a bevy of "neo-conservative" operatives —
along with a handful of "liberals" — to join them in signing the letter.
THE WAR PARTY— NAMING SOME NAMES
Although the list of signers is bipartisan and includes a number of
persons identified with the "liberal" philosophy, the one thread of consis-
tency is that, candidly, while most of persons on the list happen to be
Jewish, those who are not have still been long-standing and enthusiastic
members of what traditional American conservative Pat Buchanan, a crit-
ic of the neo-conservatives, called "Israel's Amen Corner" in official
All of the signers, likewise, have longstanding and intimate connec-
tions to the Kristol family network and their allies in the sphere of influ-
ence surrounding Richard Perle from the old "Team B" days of the 1970s.
They are indeed the "war party." What follows is a virtual "who's who"
of the imperial war party.
Gary Bauer. Another longtime satellite of Irving Kristol and his son
William (with whom he shared an interest in a vacation condominium),
Bauer has been a strong and unswerving advocate for Israel inside the
American "Christian Right" movement through his leadership of the
Family Research Council.
William J. Bennett. Bennett's entire career in official Washington
has come with the patronage of the Kristol family, ranging from his post
as chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities and then as
secretary of education under President Ronald Reagan and as "drug czar"
under President George H. W. Bush. Bennett is a co-director of a Kristol-
sponsored "think tank" known as Empower America, founded in 1991. In
return for Irving Kristol's sponsorship, Bennett gave William Kristol his
first high-level job in government, naming him chief of staff at the U.S.
Department of Education.
Eliot Cohen. The director of the Center for Strategic Education at the
[Paul] Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) — of which
former deputy secretary of defense Paul Wolfowitz served as dean, prior
to his return to the Defense Department — Cohen is the author of a new
book devoted to the subject of "Israel's security revolution."
Midge Decter. The wife of Council on Foreign Relations figure
Norman Podhoretz [see below] and a widely-promoted media figure in
her own right, Decter is the mother of John Podhoretz who has been a
36 Michael Collins Piper
deputy editor of The Weekly Standard, of which Wilham Kristol is editor
Thomas Donnelly. The deputy director of Wilham Kristol's Project
for the New American Century, and a former executive editor of The
National Interest, a "neo-conservative" journal founded by Kristol's
father, Irving Kristol, Donnelly is a veteran military correspondent who
was trained at the Johns Hopkins' University's SAIS, where (as noted pre-
viously) Paul Wolfowitz served as dean prior to returning to the Defense
Hillel Fradkin. An outspoken Zionist who is a "resident fellow" at
the American Enterprise Institute and an adjunct professor of government
at Georgetown University, Fradkin is the Washington director of the
Israeli-based Shalem Center which describes itself as a "research institute
for Jewish and Israeli social thought." Fradkin has also served as a vice
president of the Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation, a "conservative"
foundation which has provided millions of dollars in funding to myriad
pro-Israel (and anti-Arab and anti-Islamic) groups and projects. Of
course, it is no coincidence that, in earlier years, William Kristol had been
associated with this foundation and continues to be a major player in
directing its affairs.
Frank Gaffney. A major player in the Perle-Kristol sphere, Gaffney
is the "hawkish" director of the Center for Security Policy — a Washington
think tank known for what has been described as support for "extreme
right-wing Israeli causes," and which includes Richard Perle on its board
of advisors. Gaffney himself worked alongside Perle on the staff of Sen.
Henry M. Jackson when Perle was active in establishing "Team B" and
operating as an asset in place for Israel. Gaffney's board of directors also
includes former American-Israel Public Affairs Committee director
Morris Amitay, as well as former Navy Secretary John Lehman [see
below]. Gaffney's CSP receives funding from the Irving I. Moskowitz
Foundation which has supported real estate takeovers in Israel associated
with Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and from the aforementioned
Kristol-influenced Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation. Gaffney spe-
cializes in training pro-Israel interns for insertion into public policy-mak-
ing posts in government and providing pro-Israel-oriented propaganda for
distribution in Republican and "conservative" circles. Gaffney is a wide-
ly-quoted columnist who writes for the "neo-conservative" Washington
Reuel Marc Gerecht. A former Middle Eastern specialist in the
CIA's directorate of operations ("black ops") division, Gerecht's writing
is featured in Kristol-associated publications such as The Weekly Stan-
dard. He is protege of Richard Perle.
Michael Joyce. Little known to the general public, Joyce, yet anoth-
er protege of Irving Kristol, is a former school teacher who has risen to
power through his involvement with a number of well-heeled foundations
known for sponsoring pro-Israel causes, including the Olin Foundation —
funded by chemical and munitions interests — which has sponsored anti-
Islamic propaganda by writer Steven Emerson (a widely-cited "authority"
on "Islamic terrorism" and the (again, aforementioned) Lynde and Harry
Bradley Foundation, of which he (Joyce) was the longtime director. The
Bradley Foundation has been a major font of funding for National Affairs,
Inc., the Kristol family-associated enterprise that publishes The National
Interest and The Public Interest magazines.
Donald Kagan. A widely-published historian with an interest in the
history of warfare and an advocate — like William Kristol — of flexing
American military power worldwide, Kagan is a professor of classics and
history at Yale University.
Robert Kagan. The son of Donald Kagan, mentioned above, he is
director of William Kristol's Project for the New American Century, a
senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, and
also a contributing editor of Kristol's Weekly Standard and writes a regu-
lar monthly column for the Washington Post where he consistently touts
a staunch pro-Israel line and advocates U.S. meddling abroad. (Robert
Kagan's brother, Frederick Kagan, has also emerged as a leading figure in
the neo-conservative power network as well.)
Charles Krauthammer. A well-known television "talking head" and
nationally-syndicated newspaper columnist, Krauthammer, who was
trained as a psychiatrist, seems obsessed with devoting all of his waking
hours writing and talking about the need for the United States to devote
its energies to the preservation of Israel and the destruction of Israel's
enemies. His venom for critics of Israel is perhaps unmatched.
John Lehman. A former National Security Council (NSC) advisor to
3 8 Michael Co l l in s Pip e r
then-Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, Lehman went on to serve as
Navy Secretary during the Reagan administration and as deputy director
of the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency where he was close-
ly associated with the intimate pro-Israel circles surrounding Paul
Wolfowitz and Richard Perle. British journalist Claudia Wright notes that
before he became Navy Secretary Lehman "was well-known in Israeli
military circles, sat on the board of a Philadelphia think tank run by
American supporters of Israel, and operated a highly profitable defense
consulting company with business ties to the Israeli arms industry." Along
with Perle, and other Kristol family cronies previously mentioned,
Lehman is a member of the board of advisors of the Center for Security
Policy [See Frank Gaffney, above].
Martin Peretz. The stridently pro-Israel publisher of the "liberal"
New Republic, Peretz declared in the Sept. 24 edition of his magazine
that, in the wake of the terrorist attacks on 9-11 that "we are all Israelis
now." Very much an ally of the neo-conservatives, Peretz has long been
recognized as a key figure in a network of top-level publishers and media
figures allied with one goal in mind: promoting the cause of Israel.
Norman Podhoretz. A Council on Foreign Relations member and a
key figure in the influential New York chapter of the American Jewish
Committee and its "liberal-turned-conservative" Commentary magazine,
Podhoretz is another "ex-Trotskyite" who emerged as one of the leaders
of the pro-Israel neo-conservative crowd in association with Irving
Kristol. His son, John Podhoretz, was a colleague of William Kristol as
deputy editor of the Rupert Murdoch-financed Weekly Standard.
Stephen J. Solarz. A former longtime member of the House of
Representatives where he was a major legislative legman for the interests
of Israel, Solarz is now a high-powered international consultant. While in
Congress, Solarz played a major role (in league with Paul Wolfowitz, then
serving in the Reagan administration) in the overthrow of former
Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos when the Asian leader attempted
to assert his nation's sovereignty.
Vin Weber. A former member of the House of Representatives where
he was an energetic (non- Jewish) supporter of Israel, Weber was a co-
founder of William Kristol's Empower America and in the 2000 presi-
dential campaign was a top advisor to Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.). While
in the House, Weber helped sabotage an effort to force a congressional
investigation of Israel's terroristic 1967 attack on the U.S.S. Liberty which
resulted in the murder of 34 American sailors and the maiming of 172
others. Weber is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Marshall Wittmann. Although he is Jewish, Wittman was the direc-
tor of legislative affairs for the pro-Israel Christian Coalition. Wittmann's
advocacy of "National Greatness Conservatism" — that is U.S. meddling
overseas and the flexing of U.S. military might on Israel's behalf — has
been promoted in the pages of William Kristol's Weekly Standard.
While this is a representative overview of many of the people in the
Perle-Kristol network, it is by no means complete. But it does illustrate
the amazing power and influence that Kristol and his associates — The
High Priests of War — have assembled.
Kristol's magazine. The Weekly Standard, is the officially recognized
media voice for this combine, to the point that although its actual circu-
lation is quite small Kristol's magazine is generally recognized by most
other major media as certainly one of the most influential publications in
America — bar none.
It was not so extraordinary then, that, on March 17, 2003 — the day
before the United States launched the war against Iraq, Kristol was able
to brag in a signed editorial in The Weekly Standard that "obviously, we
are gratified that the Iraq strategy we have long advocated . . . has become
the policy of the U.S. government.''^*
Just one day later, on March 18, as the war began. The Washington
Post reminded its readers how influential Kristol was, noting that the
Post's columnist, Richard Cohen, had once declared the looming conflict
to be "Kristol's War." The Post wrote of Kristol that with U.S. forces on
the verge of bombing Baghdad, "this would seem to be Kristol's
For the beleaguered people of Iraq and for the American and British
soldiers who died in pursuit of the neo-conservative war aims — and for
the American taxpayers, who must pay the bills — it was not their
moment, however much Kristol and company may have rejoiced.
40 Michael Collins Piper
ABANDONING TRADITIONAL AMERICAN POLICY
We have seen how this new form of "conservative imperialism" with
roots in the ranks of an elite group of "former" Trotskyite leftists — who
have transformed into Republican "neo-conservatives" — has taken hold
of the reins of power at the highest ranks of the administration of
President George W. Bush. This conservative imperialism is the founda-
tion upon which the current war against Iraq is based and upon which
future imperial American wars in the Middle East and elsewhere are like-
It is these neo-conservatives who support a modern-day brand of impe-
rialism — the concept of U.S. interventionism and meddling abroad. The
ongoing war against Iraq is the culmination of a long-standing drive by the
neo-conservatives who view the war as the first step in a long -ranging plan
to not only "remake the Arab world," but also to establish the United States
as the sole world power, unquestioned in military and economic might.