Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan administration. He was Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal editorial page and Contributing Editor of National Review. He is coauthor of The Tyranny of Good Intentions. He can be reached at: PaulCraigRoberts@yahoo.com
The Defanging of America: Reality-Based Community Overthrows History’s Actors
“We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality – judiciously, as you will – we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.” Bush White House aide explaining the New Reality
The New American Century lasted a decade. Financial crisis and defeated objectives in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Georgia brought the neoconservative project for American world hegemony crashing to a close in the autumn of 2008.
The American neoconservatives are the heirs of Leon Trotsky. Their dream of American “Full Spectrum Dominance”–US military and economic superiority over any possible combination of states–is matched in ambition only by the early 20th century Trotskyite dream of world Communist revolution.
The neocons used September 11, 2001, as a “new Pearl Harbor” to give power precedence over law domestically and internationally. The executive branch no longer had to obey federal statutes, such as the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act or honor international treaties, such as the Geneva Conventions. An asserted “terrorist threat” to national security became the cloak which hid US imperial interests as the Bush Regime set about dismantling US civil liberties and the existing order of international law constructed by previous governments during the post-war era.
Perhaps the neoconservative project for world hegemony would have lasted a bit longer had the neocons possessed intellectual competence.
On the war front, the incompetent neocons predicted that the Iraq war would be a six-week cakewalk, whose $70 billion cost would be paid out of Iraqi oil revenues. President Bush fired White House economist Larry Lindsey for estimating that the war would cost $200 billion. The current estimate by experts is that the Iraq war has cost American taxpayers between two and three trillion dollars. And the six-week war is now the six-year war.