Last night President Obama hosted a dinner of "foreign policy experts" to get advice about his ISIS plans. Among the guests were Sandy Berger, a man who got caught stealing federal documents; Strobe Talbott a man whose employer receives major funding from the terrorist-funding government of Qatar, and Zbigniew Brzezinski a man who was involved in creating both the Islamist state of Iran and the Taliban.
According to the NY Times:
Two of the guests — Stephen J. Hadley and Richard N. Haass — worked for the George W. Bush administration and have direct experience with the Iraq war and its chaotic aftermath. Mr. Hadley was national security adviser to Mr. Bush in 2007, when his administration undertook the troop surge in Iraq. Mr. Haass was director of policy planning at the State Department during preparations for the war in 2003.Let's start with Mr. Talbott president of the Bookings institute, as reported over this past weekend:
Now the president of the Council on Foreign Relations, Mr. Haass recently criticized what he views as Mr. Obama’s overstretched foreign policy. “There is a growing mismatch between the rhetoric and the policy,” he said. “The world has proved to be a far more demanding place than it looked to this White House a few years ago.”
Two of the other guests, Samuel R. Berger and Zbigniew Brzezinski, advised Democratic presidents during foreign crises: Mr. Berger, while Bill Clinton was weighing airstrikes in Bosnia and Kosovo; Mr. Brzezinski, while Jimmy Carter was dealing with the Iran hostage crisis.
Mr. Obama also invited three veterans of his administration who were involved in counterterrorism policy: Tom Donilon, a former national security adviser; Michele Flournoy, the former No. 2 official at the Pentagon; and Michael J. Morell, a former deputy C.I.A. director.
Rounding out the table were Strobe Talbott, the president of the Brookings Institution, who served in Mr. Clinton’s State Department, and Jane Harman, a former Democratic congresswoman from California who now runs the Woodrow Wilson Center.
The NY Times reports that Qatar who provides funding to ISIS and Hamas (and gives sanctuary to Hamas leaders) agreed last year to make a $14.8 million, four-year donation to Brookings, which has helped fund a Brookings affiliate in Qatar and a project on United States relations with the Islamic world.Does Qatari money skew Mr. Talbott's opinions? According to the Times report some of the Brookings' analysis is skewed but who knows what the guy will do when advising the president. However, if you were president and creating a guest list for advice would you take that chance?
In 2002 Sandy Berger smuggled classified documents out of the National Archives that detailed his boss's efforts to thwart terrorist threats to the millennium celebrations. The crime cost Berger $50,000, 100 hours of community service, his security clearance, and his law license.
The Berger episode gnaws at [recently retired Archives Inspector General Paul] Brachfeld because the former top official abused his privileges and because Berger's actions might have robbed the 9/11 Commission of key details related to its probe of the terror plot. Brachfeld says Berger was given "unique privileges" just "because he was Sandy Berger.Again, if you were president would you invite someone who stole documents to protect his ex-boss?
How about Zbigniew Brzezinski? He was National Security Adviser for the president with the worst foreign policy record in history (until now) Jimmy Carter.
One "achievement" of Carter/Brzezinski foreign policy is the fact that we now have a bunch of Islamic crazies running Iran who are want to control the entire Middle East. When and if these nuts ever their hands on "the bomb" the countless deaths that will result from his actions will also be part of why we remember Jimmy Carter and Zbigniew Brzezinski.
In 2007 there was an interesting analysis in the JPost about Carter and Iran that said in part:
Carter viewed Khomeini as more of a religious holy man in a grassroots revolution than a founding father of modern terrorism. Carter's ambassador to the UN, Andrew Young, said "Khomeini will eventually be hailed as a saint." Carter's Iranian ambassador, William Sullivan, said, "Khomeini is a Gandhi-like figure." Carter adviser James Bill proclaimed in a Newsweek interview on February 12, 1979 that Khomeini was not a mad mujahid, but a man of "impeccable integrity and honesty."The Shah, on the other hand had the Peanut President down pat. He told his personal confidant, "Who knows what sort of calamity he [Carter] may unleash on the world?"
Carter never got it that Khomeini, a cleric exiled to Najaf in Iraq from 1965-1978, was preparing Iran for revolution. Proclaiming "the West killed God and wants us to bury him," Khomeini's weapon of choice was not the sword but the media. Using tape cassettes smuggled by Iranian pilgrims returning from the holy city of Najaf, he fueled disdain for what he called gharbzadegi ("the plague of Western culture").
Carter pressured the Shah to make what he termed human rights concessions by releasing political prisoners and relaxing press censorship. Khomeini could never have succeeded without Carter. The Islamic Revolution would have been stillborn. Gen. Robert Huyser, Carter's military liaison to Iran, once told me in tears: "The president could have publicly condemned Khomeini and even kidnapped him and then bartered for an exchange with the [American Embassy] hostages, but the president was indignant. 'One cannot do that to a holy man,' he said." Here is the lesson for today:The Carter/Brzezinski belief that every crisis can be resolved with diplomacy - and nothing but diplomacy is wrong. And it's a nasty habit that Obama picked up.
Some governments are totally evil and must be openly confronted and defeated. Khomeini had the help of the PLO in Iran that alone should have been a big hint about Khomeini. The PLO supplied weapons and terrorists to murder Iranians and incite mobs in the streets. No wonder Yasser Arafat was hailed as a friend of Khomeini after he seized control of Iran and was given the Israeli Embassy in Teheran, where PLO flag now flew overhead.
As National Security Adviser for Jimmy Carter Zbigniew Brzezinski was instrumental in creating the policies that brought us the War on Terror by inciting the Soviet Union to invade Afghanistan and helping to create both the Taliban and al Qaeda.
US aid to the mujahideen Islamic insurgency started, six months before the Soviets invaded Afghanistan with the intention of making it more likely for the USSR to attack Afghanistan to support its puppet government. Brzezinski admitted as much in a 1998 interview.
According to the official version of history, CIA aid to the Mujahadeen began during 1980, that is to say, after the Soviet army invaded Afghanistan, 24 Dec 1979. But the reality is completely otherwise. As Brzezinski described:
That secret operation was an excellent idea. It had the effect of drawing the Soviets into the Afghan trap.... The day that the Soviets officially crossed the border, I wrote to President Carter "We now have the opportunity of giving to the Soviet Union its Vietnam War."Brzezinski got his wish, and once the Soviets invaded he sprung into action.
We immediately launched a twofold process when we heard that the Soviets had entered Afghanistan. The first involved direct reactions and sanctions focused on the Soviet Union, and both the State Department and the National Security Council prepared long lists of sanctions to be adopted, of steps to be taken to increase the international costs to the Soviet Union of their actions. And the second course of action led to my going to Pakistan a month or so after the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, for the purpose of coordinating with the Pakistanis a joint response, the purpose of which would be to make the Soviets bleed for as much and as long as is possible; and we engaged in that effort in a collaborative sense with the Saudis, the Egyptians, the British, the Chinese, and we started providing weapons to the Mujaheddin, from various sources again - for example, some Soviet arms from the Egyptians and the Chinese. We even got Soviet arms from the Czechoslovak communist government, since it was obviously susceptible to material incentives; and at some point we started buying arms for the Mujaheddin from the Soviet army in Afghanistan, because that army was increasingly corrupt.Unfortunately the unexpected result of his policy was the creation of the Taliban and its alliance with al Qaeda. After the Soviets withdrew, the mujaheddin who got their initial financing during the Carter Administration thanks to Brzezinski began to fight each other for power.
After several years of civil war, a new armed group began with the backing of Pakistan. Known as the Taliban this radical group entered the fray. By 1996, with backing from the Pakistani ISI, the Military of Pakistan, and al-Qaeda, the Taliban had controlled most of the country. At the same time in May 1996 Sudan, which had been the home of al Qaeda, told bin Laden he would never be welcome to return, therefore the Taliban offered bin Laden the opportunity to re-locate its headquarters to Afghanistan. Al-Qaeda enjoyed the Taliban's protection and build up its network from there. All thanks to the peanut President and his national security adviser.
Oh BTW about the Camp David accords, widely seen as Jimmy Carter's big foreign policy achievement. The truth is when Sadat went to Jerusalem and Israel and Egypt began bi-lateral talks, Carter objected. He didn't care that the peace process already begun by Sadat and Begin might lead to peace, Carter wanted his "Geneva Peace Process" plan or nothing.
Thankfully Carter couldn't stop the approaching peace train. Within days after the Sadat visit Israeli journalists were allowed into Cairo, breaking a symbolic barrier, and from there the peace process quickly gained momentum.
If our president is basing his ISIS plans on advice from a man who got caught stealing federal documents, a man whose employer receives major funding from the terrorist-funding government of Qatar, and a man who was involved in creating both the Islamist state of Iran and the Taliban we are definitely screwed.