Magazine article The New American

Insider Rift over Iraq

Magazine article The New American

Insider Rift over Iraq

Article excerpt

By any suitable definition of the term, Brent Scowcroft is an Insider. A longtime member of the Council on Foreign Relations, Scowcroft was also a founding member of Kissinger Associates--the high-octane international consulting firm that played a key role in arranging deals facilitating Saddam Hussein's 1980s arms buildup. As national security adviser under the first President Bush (whom he describes as his best friend), Scowcroft was a primary architect of the first Gulf War. In that capacity Scowcroft was a colleague of future Vice President Dick Cheney, who at the time was secretary of defense. He had previously been a mentor to Condoleezza Rice, the future national security adviser and secretary of state.

In 2002, prior to the second Gulf War, Scowcroft published a Wall Street Journal op-ed column chastising the second Bush administration, warning that reigniting the conflict with Iraq would be a bloody and avoidable mess. Scowcroft and Bush the Elder came to be seen as representing the "realist" wing within the Power Elite, with the prominent figures surrounding Bush the Younger representing the radical, or "transformational," wing. The division between old-school establishmentarians and neo-conservative advocates of global democratic revolution has been thrust into the open by an October 31 feature story in The New Yorker entitled "Breaking Ranks: What Turned Brent Scowcroft Against the Bush Administration?"

Scowcroft spoke with the magazine about his growing alienation from his CFR-connected colleagues who man key posts in the second Bush administration. …

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