Friday, July 23, 2004

Committee on the Present Danger Off to Rocky Start

Journalist Laura Rozen demonstrated the power of the internet when she did a quick google search and posting on her War and Piece blog about the third go-round of the Committee on the Present Danger.

Launched with a Tuesday Washington Post column by Senators Joe Lieberman and John Kyl, honorary chairs of the group, and a full page ad in the New York Times, the new CPD invoked the memory of its 1950 predecessor which attacked the missile gap and the 1970s effort which opposed the SALT treaty and urged a nuclear buildup.

This time in this third incarnation, we intend to focus the committee on the present danger our generation faces: international terrorism from Islamic extremists and the outlaw states that either harbor or support them. The Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks awoke all Americans to the capabilities and brutality of our new enemy, but today too many people are insufficiently aware of our enemy's evil worldwide designs, which include waging jihad against all Americans and reestablishing a totalitarian religious empire in the Middle East. The past struggle against communism was, in some ways, different from the current war against Islamist terrorism. But America's freedom and security, which each has aimed to undermine, are exactly the same. The national and international solidarity needed to prevail over both enemies is also the same. In fact, the world war against Islamic terrorism is the test of our time.

Liebarmann and Kyl said their group was made up of Americans with diverse views. That turned out to be an understatement when Rozen did her research.

She found that

The managing director of this - uh - effort, Peter Hannaford, has been lobbying for some of the world's nasties, I noticed in some recent reporting. Including for Austria's Nazi-nostalgic Jorg Haider and the Austrian Freedom Party, and some African dictators, too.

Also Algeria, and the People's Republic of China.

in 2002, Haider made a solidarity visit to Saddam's Iraq, met with the dictator himself, Tariq Aziz and others. Apparently, they all had a merry time denoucing Zionism and Saddam suggested they "develop relations" between his ruling Baath party and Austria's Freedom Party.

By Thursday, Hannaford had resigned from this CPD post.

According to the New York Sun "the founding publisher of the American Spectator and a member of the second Cold War iteration of the Committee on the Present Danger, R. Emmett Tyrrell, said Mr. Hannaford was a “great Reaganite” and a “wonderful friend of freedom.”

Rozen notes that some prominent conservative and neo-conservative hawks hesitated to sign on. Equally prominent in their absence are "liberal hawks."

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