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Saturday, February 18, 2006

PNAC: Rebuilding America's Defenses - A Biopsy on Imperialism; Part I: Blueprint for Imperialism

by Sarah Meyer
Index Research
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1. Blueprint for Imperialism
2. Operation Imperialism, The ‘Enduring’ Mission
3. Appendix: Signatories to Rebuilding America’s Defenses


A superpower does not have moral imperatives. It has strategic imperatives. Its purpose is not to sustain the lives of other people, but to sustain itself. George Monbiot, The Moral Myth, 25.11.03.

The 19th century’s definitive treatise was Das Kapital (1848) by Karl Marx. The 20th century had two major expositions of principles. Adolf Hitler published Eine Abrechnung (A Reckoning) in 1925, and Die Nazionalosozialistische Bewegung (the National-Socialistic Movement) in 1926. Together, these books became known as Mein Kampf (My Struggle). In 1964, The People’s Republic of China published The Little Red Book, an iconic collection of quotations from the speeches and publications of Mao Tse Tung.

The 20th century ended with a blueprint for imperialism - not a book, but a website called The Project for the New American Century.1

We aim to make the case and rally support for American global leadership.2” PNAC Statement of Principles, 3 June 1997.

PNAC’s inception, formed by people known as ‘neo-conservatives,’3 was primarily focused on an arms build-up “for the preservation of peace (sic)” (p. 7), following a “decade of defense neglect.” (p. 16).


Within the PNAC website is a statement (2000) called Rebuilding America’s Defenses (pdf)
This document is based upon Vice President Cheney’s Defense Policy Guidance, drafted in 1992 by the Defense Department’s Paul Wolfovitz and Lewis Libby.

Michale Klare writes: “This (1992) document calls for proactive U.S. military intervention to deter and prevent the rise of a contending peer (or equal) competitor, and asserts that the United States must use any and all means necessary to prevent that from happening.” At the time, people were “horrified,” and the document was withdrawn; it is still not available. It was later incorporated into the September 2002 National Security Strategy of the United States of America (pdf)

A forthcoming book,4 Deadly Doctrine No 1 Strike First, subtitled Objectives and Operations of America’s Neoconservative Mafia, investigates the years of effort by Paul Wolfovitz and the “neo-conservative machinations” which culminated in the publication of the 2002 National Security Strategy. The author states that it is still “the country's guiding strategic military document.” The first chapter of this book can be read here

The PNAC thrust, of which Rebuilding America’s Defenses is the key document, is based on this 2002 document. The signatories5 “participated in at least one project meeting or contributed a paper for discussion.” Both Libby (now indicted) and Wolfovitz, (now receiving ‘entourage’ complaints at the World Bank) were founding members of PNAC as well as signatories to Rebuilding America’s Defenses.

This RAD document has recently been receiving more attention. Just as I am putting up this blog, for example, Peter Phillips describes the Global Dominance Group and its connection with PNAC / Rebuilding America’s Defenses.


The United States, says Rebuilding America’s Defenses, faces no global rival. America’s “grand strategy should aim to preserve and extend this advantageous position as far into the future as possible.” (p. 8)

“If an American peace is to be maintained, and expanded, it must have a secure foundation on unquestioned U.S. military preeminence.” (p. 16)

“To preserve American military preeminence, aggressive experimentation with new technologies, especially information technologies, is essential. The “revolution” in the American military transformation is again stressed. (p. 62)

The Enduring Mission: to “maintain military preeminence that is consistent with the requirements of a strategy of American global leadership with global missile defenses” which protect and control land, sea, air, space and cyberspace. (p. 63)

“Building an effective, robust, layered, global system of missile defenses is a prerequisite for maintaining American preeminence.” (p. 66)

“The price of American preeminence is that, just as it was actively obtained, it must be actively maintained.” (p. 85)

“If the United States is to maintain its preeminence – and the military revolution now underway is already an American-led revolution – the Pentagon must begin in earnest to transform U.S. military forces.” (p. 86)

“The maintenance of the American peace requires that American forces be preeminent when they are called upon to face very different adversaries in the future.” (p. 87)

“Global leadership is not something exercised at our leisure, when the mood strikes us or when our core national security interests are directly threatened; then it is already too late. Rather, it is a choice whether or not to maintain American military preeminence, to secure American geopolitical leadership, and to preserve the American peace.” (p. 88)

2. Operation Imperialism: The Enduring Mission

Brian Bogart, in an excellent essay, wrote: “Our dilemma stems from the postwar adoption of a military-based rather than a people-based economy. This policy, authored by Wall Street's Paul Nitze, is embodied in NSC-68, a document signed by President Truman in 1950.” This, says Bogart, is where America “took the wrong road.” Nitze’s ideas (until he recanted prior to dying) are joined at the hip with Cheney, Wolfovitz, (Darth Vader) Perle, Rumsfeld.

Bogart quotes Dwight Eisenhower, upon leaving office in January 1961:

"In the counsels of Government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the Military Industrial Complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists, and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes."

Eisenhower’s farewell speech is shown in a film Why We Fight, “which examines the modern American military machine and the modern American militaristic mindset.” A ‘Real’ video of this film can be seen here

Gore Vidal recently wrote that he had been “credited” as being the first to “heretically refer” to the United States as an empire. Aged 80, he can now be treasured for his egotism and applauded for his historical awareness. In President Jonah, he discussed, with intelligence and humour, the present Bush administration’s “antipathy toward democracy.”
Listen to the radio broadcast.

In case there are still some who balk at the United States being called an ‘empire,’ the OED’s definition of empire is: “From French: imperium; from Latin: imperator. Absolute sway, supreme control; an extensive territory, especially an aggregate of many states.”

The plan for America’s empire is on the web. Anyone can read it. The phrases preserve and extend, as far into the future as possible, expanded, visible expression of the extent of America’s status as a superpower, preeminence … these phrases define America’s intent.

There are other documents to look through, too. Just in case some think all Americans are naïve - unaware of the results their actions - read, for example, Ralph Peter's article, Constant Conflict in the 1997 US Army War College Quarterly.

“There will be no peace. At any given moment for the rest of our lifetimes, there will be multiple conflicts in mutating forms around the globe. Violent conflict will dominate the headlines, but cultural and economic struggles will be steadier and ultimately more decisive.”

The pathological problem with the neoconservatives is that they are myopic - unwilling to see, or hear criticism of, what conflicts with their ambition. They do not care how many people are killed. Morality does not exist in their corporate quest.

In March 2003, George Monbiot wrote: “Those who support the coming war with Iraq refuse to see that it has anything to do with US global domination.”

Ghali Hassan also expresses the thoughts of many in our world.

“The Bush Administration, its vassals and the mass media adopted the cliché of “democracy” to justify the invasion and the mass murder of hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraqi men, women and children. However, from the outset of the invasion and occupation of Iraq, the U.S. objective was conspicuous; to destroy Iraq, install a puppet government and pillage the nation’s resources.”

The new 2006 Quarterly Defense Review (QDR)6 20 year plan (pdf) is presently causing much web discussion. The official issues, statements, debates, and commentaries are found here or one can read the key points here

This ‘QDR’ document opens with the statement, “The United States is a nation engaged in what will be a long war.”

Robert Dreyfus says the new QDR is the “Bush administration’s ultimate Plan for Empire,” which is “generational in scope.” This is not a “reassessment,” nor an “admission that the US has started something it cannot finish,” as suggested by Simon Tisdall in 7 February’s Guardian.

The PNAC document states very clearly, p. 8, “America’s “grand strategy should aim to preserve and extend this advantageous position as far into the future as possible.” Mr. Rumsfeld has simply found a new jingo-phrase, in true corporate fashion. The "new goals" are discussed in Rebuilding America’s Defenses in various places. The word “transformation” is frequently used, for which the need for more money7 is strongly emphasized.

Picking up on the word “long,” a reporter asked if Iraq would be a “long war” at the press conference, Mr. Rumsfeld said, “No I don’t think Iraq will be a long war.” Brigadier General Kimmitt talked about “reposturing” (not in OED) forces, and said the US would “not maintain any long term bases in Iraq.”8

In January ’06, President Carter said: “What I believe is that there are people in Washington now, some of our top leaders, who never intend to withdraw military forces from Iraq and they're looking for ten, 20, 50 years in the future.”

We must insist on the US Government’s definition of “long” in each instance.

Sohbet Karbuz asks: United States Department of Defense … or Empire of Defense? He gives 5 essential US Department of Defense facts.
Fact 1: The US DoD is one of the world’s largest landlords
Fact 2: If the DoD were a country it would be 17th in the world’s GDP ranking.
Fact 3: The US DoD is the largest oil consumer in the US, and 31st largest in the world.
Fact 4: American GI is the most energy-consuming soldier ever seen on the field of war
Fact 5: The US military is the biggest purchaser of oil in the world.
Dr. Karbuz asked me to add Fact 6: The Department of Defense is the world’s largest employer, (p. 75) directly employing more than three million people. He gives an excellent list of footnote references. The article is a ‘MUST READ,’ here

Q. How ‘long’ will it take to dismantle the present Bush administration’s empire? Will there be a viable future?


Roger Barnett, U.S. Naval War College
Alvin Bernstein, National Defense University
Stephen Cambone10, National Defense University, Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence
Eliot Cohen, Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University
Devon Gaffney, Cross Donors' Forum for International Affairs Thomas Donnelly, Project for the New American Century, American Enterprise Institute
David Epstein, Office of Secretary of Defense, Net Assessment
David Fautua, Lt. Col., U.S. Army
Dan Goure, Center for Strategic and International Studies
Donald Kagan, Yale University
Fred Kagan, U. S. Military Academy at West Point
Robert Kagan,11 Carnegie Endowment for International Peace; Washington Post writer
Robert Killebrew, Col., USA (Ret.)
William Kristol, The Weekly Standard
Mark Lagon, Senate Foreign Relations Committee
James Lasswell, GAMA Corporation I.
Lewis Libby, Dechert Price & Rhoads, Assistant to the President
Robert Martinage, Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessment Phil Meilinger, U.S. Naval War College
Mackubin Owens, U.S. Naval War College,
Foreign Policy Research Institute
Steve Rosen, Harvard University, ex-Director of Foreign Policy Issues, awaiting trial
Gary Schmitt, Project for the New American Century, board of directors, U.S. Committee on NATO, author
Abram Shulsky, The RAND Corporation
Michael Vickers, Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessment Barry Watts, former director of Northrop Grumman Corporation, author of The Military Use of Space: A Diagnostic Assessment
Paul Wolfowitz, Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University, now World Bank President
Dov Zakheim, System Planning Corporation, left DoD 2004

[1] See William Rivers Pitt, The Project for the New American Century
[2] Italics throughout are mine unless otherwise noted
[3] For a list of 50 people described as ‘neoconservatives’, see here. Numbers vary from 320 (Bogart) – 400 (Phillips)
[4] Books: Imperial Designs by Gary Dorrien is a recommended book. Rise of the Vulcans, by James Mann, who is, I believe, a member of the PNAC clan.
[5] See Appendix
[6] Earlier QDR reports can be seen at: 1997, 2001 and 2005.
[7] To be discussed in a later PNAC blog.
[8] See upcoming Part II, US Enduring Special Interests
[9] For further details on signatories, search name at and at
[10] See The Secret World of Stephen Cambone, Rumsfeld’s Sorcerer, by Jeffrey St. Clair, an excerpt from his new book, Grand Theft Pentagon
[11] Author of Of Paradise and Power: America and Europe in the New World Order, from, which comes the famous quote: “Americans are from Mars and Europeans are from Venus: They agree on little and understand one another less and less.” His wife is Victoria Nuland, the present US deputy chief of mission to NATO.

Why the United States “extends” and “expands” will be discussed in Part II: PNAC: REBUILDING AMERICAS DEFENSES. “Special Interests.”

The URL to PNAC: Rebuilding America’s Defenses, Part I is

Sarah Meyer:
can be reached at:

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