Commentary

The Rise and Continued Influence of the Neocons. The Project for the New American Century (PNAC)

The Rise and Continued Influence of the Neocons. The Project for the New American Century (PNAC)

“My film itself is essentially… was tracking the neocon influence and how the neoconservatives from the Bush era that pushed the Iraq war, that constructed the blueprints for the Iraq war, how they also were the earliest pioneers pushing this Russiagate Cold War 2.0 mentality.” – Robbie Martin, from this week’s program.

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Robert Kagan. William Kristol. Paul Wolfowitz. Richard Perle. John Bolton. Elliott Abrams. Gary Schmitt. These are a few of the names generally associated with a strain of far-right political thought called neoconservatism. [1][2]

Politically, the neocons favour a world in which the United States adopts a much more aggressive military posture, and utilizes its military might to not only contain terrorist and related threats to its security, but force regime change in regions like the Middle East. They further take on the task of ‘nation-building’ all in the name of creating a safer world for ‘democracy.’ It was the neocons who promoted the stratagem of pre-emptive military action. [3]

The neocons enjoyed a robust period of influence under the Bush-Cheney administration. The 9/11 attacks and the triggering of a ‘war on terrorism’ enabled a series of foreign policy choices, most notably the War on Afghanistan and the War on Iraq, which aligned with the aims and aspirations of the group once referred to by President George Bush Sr. as the ‘crazies in the basement.'[4]

The neocons did not vanish with the departure of the Bush Republicans from office, and the rise of Obama. Indeed, the clout of this group and their grip on power is arguably as strong as ever. Not only did they continue to shape the U.S. foreign policy establishment, but they have managed to alter what constitutes acceptable public and media discourse within the world’s remaining superpower. The trajectory of neocon influence in Washington is explored in depth in the documentary series, A Very Heavy Agenda, by independent journalist and film-maker Robbie Martin.

In part one of a special two part interview by Global Research News Hour guest contributor Scott Price, Martin describes the inspiration behind making the film, the post 9/11 atmosphere in which the neocons flourished, and the neocons’ role in fostering the new Cold War mentality which contributed to the smearing of his better-known sister, former RT host Abby Martin.

This feature is followed by an interview with writer, ecological campaigner, and Deep State researcher Mark Robinowitz. Originally recorded and aired in January 2018, Robinowitz helps delineate the factions of power shaping the outcome of the 2016 presidential election, as well as the players within the National Security State, including the neocons, that appear to be manipulating him and his presidency, possibly maneuvering him towards an impeachment within the next year.

Robbie Martin is a journalist, musician and documentary film-maker. He is co-host with his sister Abby Martin of Media Roots Radio.  A Very Heavy Agenda can be streamed or purchased hereSoundtrack for Film and music for these series from Fluorescent Grey (Robbie Martin).

Mark Robinowitz is a writer, political activist, ecological campaigner and permaculture practitioner and publisher of oilempire.us as well as jfkmoon.org. He is based in Eugene, Oregon.

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Transcript – Interview with Robbie Martin, July 2018

Global Research: Through the late 20th and early 21st century, the neoconservatives loomed large in American foreign policy…the war on terror, the war in Iraq, the Bush administration. In 2018, it may seem that their power and influence has waned, but in fact, many of these neoconservatives still hold influence, and their legacy has had a much larger impact on politics and society.

In this Global Research News Hour special, we talk with journalist, filmmaker, and musician Robbie Martin on his 3-part documentary, A Very heavy Agenda. This film series covers the rise and continued influence of the neoconservatives. In Part 1, Robbie talks about the artistic and political influence for A Very Heavy Agenda and some of the early history of the war on terror.

Talking more broadly about the documentary, what was.. sort of the genesis of the idea for A Very Heavy Agenda? The documentary has a very distinct style and you don’t do a lot of editorializing. So what was the inspiration for all that? And why did you choose the kind of… this topic and the kind of technique that you were using for this documentary film?

Robbie Martin: I think I probably should give a shout out to filmmaker Adam Curtis right off the top, because I don’t give him enough credit when I talk about the inspiration for this film. As you may know, or if you’re not familiar with it…but he made a film series called The Power of Nightmares during the Bush administration that was sort of charting the neoconservative influence in the Bush administration and before, and how they’ve sort of mirrored the Wahhabist, Islamic, you know, fundamentalists and Al Qaeda figures by using what Adam Curtis described as the Power of Nightmares, that by concocting these nightmare fantasy scenarios, you could gain power, and people like Dick Cheney and Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz were able to do that by spinning these hysterical fear-mongering tales about, oh, what would happen if a bio-terrorist attack happened? You know what would happen if terrorists attacked the World Trade Centers?

That was a big inspiration for me during the Bush administration. It sort of helped me become more politically aware. It made me question a lot of things after 9/11 and having to do with the Iraq war. But over time, i just became sort of just, oh the neocons, they’re the people who were mainly behind the Iraq war. They’re sort of an evil class of foreign policy makers in DC who really want war at every opportunity. And that’s just how I thought of them throughout the years.

It wasn’t until my sister, Abby Martin, and for those listening who aren’t aware of this, my sister actually had a show on the Russian-owned television channel, Russia Today America out of DC from the years around 2012 to, I think, early 2015.

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