September 13, 2003

Wolfowitz Redux

With Paul Wolfowitz on the Hill last week doing the Senate Armed Services Two-Step, I re-read this Paul Wolfowitz primer I posted on 9 March 2003. It’s possibly more relevant now than it was then; I’ve posted the primer in its entirety in the extended entry.

Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz has been a very influential advisor of Republican foreign policy since the Gulf War, and in his current role, is a central advisor to the President and in many ways an author of the administration’s stance on Iraq. He is also unknown to most Americans, working in the shadows of the more visible Rumsfeld and Powell. Given his influence on the administration and distinct philosophy regarding foreign policy, In the public interest I want to offer a brief Wolfowitz web profile:

  • Here is the transcript of a foreign policy address Wolfowitz made at the Council for Foreign Relations in New York on 23 January 2003. The content of the address is interesting as a summary of the Bush position, but reveals nothing new. The Q&A that follows, however, is very interesting, especially in some of the questions Wolfowitz fields from the New York press. Also interesting is this statement about how the Bush approach to Iraq influences its approach to North Korea:
We have not one, but 17, U.N. Security Council resolutions to deal with the problem of Iraq. We’re at a point of real decision, and if we lose that point, the credibility not only of the United States but of the entire world body is going to go down the tubes. We haven’t yet even been able to bring the North Korean issue to the Security Council, much less have a resolution. When we do — and I think we will, and I think we should, and I think we’re going to — our credibility and the credibility of the Security Council will be greatly increased if we have managed — peacefully or, if necessary, by force — to enforce the will of the U.N. expressed in 1441.

  • Here is the transcript of an interview Wolfowitz gave PBS’ NewsHour on 14 September 2003, just three days after the WTC and Pentagon attacks. It reflects how early his perspective was shaping the Bush counter-terrorism policy, as does this statement:
The policies of the last 20 years, whether you think they were carried out effectively or ineffectively, obviously don’t work. This is not going to be a problem solved by locking somebody up and putting them in jail. It’s not going to be solved by some limited military action. It’s going to take, as the President has said and Secretary Rumsfeld has said, a broad and sustained campaign against the terrorist networks and the states that support those networks. (Again, he made this statement only three days after the attacks.)
  • Frontline has this interview with Wolfowitz regarding the administration’s stance on missile defense … it also reflects much about his overall perspective toward U.S. foreign policy.
  • And finally, in January 2002 Wolfowitz offered this interview to the New York Times, in which he offers thoughts on pursuing terrorism across a much broader range of countries and regimes than just Iraq and North Korea.

If you are serious about understanding Bush foreign policy, you have to better understand Wolfowitz. And if you want to better understand Wolfowitz, each of these links is worth the read.

Posted by Avocare at September 13, 2003 01:37 PM | TrackBack
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