Neoconservatives— The egalitarian social liberation movements of the 1960s and 1970s undermined the national consensus. Intellectual oligarchies and political institutions preserve democracy from mob rule. 

U.S. Foreign Policy--Attention, Right Face, Forward March, by Tom Barry and Jim Lobe. Looks at the role of neoconservative intellectuals and groups such as the Project for a New American Century in promoting the new militarism.

Khurram Husain, 2003, "Neocons: The Men Behind The Curtain," Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, November/December, Vol. 59, No. 6, pp. 62–71;

Some Thoughts on Neoconservatism by Chuck Grimes

Different Sectors of the Right See where the neocons fit.

The Necons

Excerpt from: Right-Wing Populism in America: Too Close for Comfort
by Chip Berlet and Matthew N. Lyons
New York: Guilford Press (2000)

p. 243-244.

After the 1988 election the New Right coalition began to break apart. When the Berlin Wall fell in 1989, the glue of anticommunism was no longer strong enough to bind together the voting blocs, organizations, and movements that constituted the New Right.

A particularly sharp fight developed between neoconservatives and self-styled “paleoconservatives.”  Neoconservatives, including many Jewish and Catholic intellectuals rooted in Cold War liberalism, clustered around publications such as Public Interest and Commentary and organizations such as the Committee on the Present Danger. They emphasized foreign policy, where they advocated aggressive anticommunism, U.S. global dominance, and international alliances. Although they attacked feminism, gay rights, and multiculturalism, “neocons” often placed less emphasis on social policy issues, and many of them opposed school prayer or a ban on abortion. In addition, many neocons supported limited social welfare programs and nonrestrictive immigration policies.

Paleoconservatives embraced traditionalist Christian morality, Eurocentric monoculturalism, isolationist nationalism, and a complete end to social programs. The Rockford Institute, the Ludwig von Mises Institute, and the Independent Institute were major paleoconservative havens.

Paleocons resented the influence of neocons such as Jean Kirkpatrick, Elliott Abrams, and William Bennett within the Reagan and Bush administrations, and they decried a neocon “takeover” of Old Right institutions such as the American Enterprise Institute and the Hoover Institution, as well as influential foundations such as Bradley, Olin, Scaife, and Smith Richardson.  Neoconservatives charged, rightly, that the paleocons were tainted with antisemitism and xenophobia.

The neocon–paleocon feud had smoldered since the mid-1980s, but it intensified in 1990 when President Bush massed troops in Saudi Arabia to fight a war with Iraq. Paleocons, as isolationists, generally opposed the action and warned of pro-Israeli “dual-loyalists” exerting too much influence over U.S. foreign policy. Neoconservatives, who were overwhelmingly interventionist and strongly pro-Zionist, supported the war and denounced many of their former partners in Cold War anticommunism as bigots and antisemites. Paleocon Patrick J. Buchanan further highlighted the divisions within the former New Right coalition with his campaigns for the Republican presidential nomination in 1992 and 1996, and his third party aspirations in 2000.

The Free Congress Foundation and the Heritage Foundation, New Right coalition builders, held a sort of middle position in the conflict between neocons and paleocons. Despite their cultural and ideological affinities with the paleocons, these organizations refused to abandon right-wing internationalism or pro-Zionism and leaned overall more to the neocon side of the dispute.

[Update: by 2002 the Free Congress Foundation had shifted more into the paleocon camp]


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