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The Checkered Neocon History of Mansoor Ijaz, Instigator of Pakistan’s “Memogate”

As I noted yesterday, Josh Rogin has been doing outstanding work on the issue now rocking Pakistan, a memo purportedly sent from the highest levels of the Pakistani civilian government seeking US support for shutting down the branch of Pakistan’s ISI that deals with the Taliban and the Haqqani Network and weakening Pakistan’s military.  Now that Rogin has confirmed existence of the memo (and today has even provided a copy of it), I’d like to return to the figure who got this whole scandal started, Mansoor Ijaz.  Here is information Rogin dug up regarding Mansoor Ijaz back on November 8, when Michael Mullen was still denying existence of the memo:

This is only the latest time that Ijaz has raised controversy concerning his alleged role as a secret international diplomat. In 1996, he was accused of trying to extort money from the Pakistani government in exchange for delivering votes in the U.S. House of Representatives on a Pakistan-related trade provision.

Ijaz, who runs the firm Crescent Investment Management LLC in New York, has been an interlocutor between U.S. officials and foreign government for years, amid constant accusations of financial conflicts of interest. He reportedly arranged meetings between U.S. officials and former Pakistani Prime Ministers Benazir Bhutto and Nawaz Sharif.

He also reportedly gave over $1 million to Democratic politicians in the 1990s and attended Christmas events at former President Bill Clinton‘s White House. Ijaz has ties to former CIA Director James Woolsey and his investment firm partner is Reagan administration official James Alan Abrahamson.

In the mid-1990s, Ijaz traveled to Sudan several times and claimed to be relaying messages from the Sudanese regime to the Clinton administration regarding intelligence on bin Laden, who was living there at the time. Ijaz has claimed that his work gave the United States a chance to kill the al Qaeda leader but that the Clinton administration dropped the ball. National Security AdvisorSandy Berger, who served under Clinton, has called Ijaz’s allegations “ludicrous and irresponsible.”

Those are some pretty damning allegations.  Before moving to the detail from the source Rogin linked on Ijaz’s attempt to get $15 million from Pakistan in return for securing a positive vote in the House of Representatives for the Brown Amendment back in 1995, it’s worth getting the context for this bill.  From the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation: Read more

The NeoCons Make Unapologetic Call for McCarthyism against Muslims

One of the successors to the NeoCon organization PNAC, the Center for Security Policy, released a report the other day that makes an unapologetic call for trumped up McCarthyism targeted at Muslims.

The study rather humorously models itself on Team B–the alternate analysis Poppy Bush ordered up to paint the Soviet Union as an ongoing threat in 1976. They do so, apparently, in an effort to invoke St. Ronnie’s use of Team B’s “analysis” for electoral gain and ultimately to point to the usefulness of ideology to generate political support for foreign policy adventures. But nowhere do they bother to mention that Team B’s analysis was famously, embarrassingly wrong.

The effect of this authoritative alternative view was profound. Among others, former California Governor Ronald Reagan used the thrust of its findings to challenge détente and those in public office who supported this doctrine. Drawing on the thinking of Team B with regard to national security issues, Reagan nearly defeated President Gerald Ford’s bid for reelection in the 1976 primaries. Four years later, Reagan successfully opposed President Jimmy Carter, with their disagreement over the latter’s detentist foreign and defense policies towards Moscow featuring prominently in the former’s victory.

Most importantly, as President, Ronald Reagan drew on the work of Team B as an intellectual foundation for his strategy for destroying the Soviet Union and discrediting its ideology – a feat begun during his tenure and finally accomplished, thanks to his implementation of that strategy, several years after he left office.

Which is, I guess, CSP’s unapologetic endorsement of simply making shit up to create an enemy.

It’s stuff like this that led me to brand these clowns with the name “utilitarian postmodernists” some years back.

Normally, I wouldn’t pay these clowns any attention–they’ve got a long history of lying to support warmongering. But what really concerns me is the report’s insinuation that the country’s laws protecting speech–which were solidified in the process of protecting leftist speech–are too strong for their trumped up fight against Muslims.

Beginning in the 1960s, however, the Supreme Court drastically reinterpreted the First Amendment, gradually extending the original guarantee of American citizens’ right to engage in political speech, to include a constitutional protection to (a) subversive speech that could be construed as “advocacy,” rather than incitement to imminent lawlessness, and (b) the speech of non-Americans. Bowing to elite opinion, which scoffed at fears of communist penetration of our government and institutions, Congress (in such legislation as the 1965 Immigration Act, the 1978 McGovern Amendment, the 1989 Moynihan-Frank Amendment, and the 1990 Immigration Act) gutted the statutory basis for excluding and deporting individuals based on ideological beliefs, regardless of their subversive tendencies – at least in the absence of demonstrable ties to terrorism, espionage or sabotage.

Let us assume, again for argument’s sake, that there was some validity in the opinion elite’s critique that anti-communism went too far – and set aside the fact that such an assumption requires overlooking post-Soviet revelations that have confirmed communist infiltrations. The prior experience would not mean the security precautions that sufficed to protect our nation from communism are adequate to shield us from a totalitarian ideology cloaked in religious garb.

Such precautions are wholly inadequate for navigating a threat environment in which secretive foreign-sponsored international networks undermine our nation from within. That is especially the case where such networks can exploit the atmosphere of intimidation created by the tactics of their terrorist counterparts (including individual assassinations and mass-murder attacks on our homeland) in a modern technological age of instantaneous cross-continental communications and the increasing availability of mass-destruction weapons that allow ever fewer people to project ever more power.

We were wrong to let leftists exercise their free speech, these fearmongers say, in spite of the fact that our nation survived the Cold War. But the threat from Muslims is even stronger than the threat of a nuclear-armed Soviet Union. And so, they suggest, we must not only abridge the free speech of Muslims, but also change the law to allow deportations of those saying unpopular things.

So to sum up this latest stunt from the NeoCons: they unabashedly admit they intend to make shit up to sow fear of Muslims, and part of that will be targeting Muslims for deportation.