Quote Of The Day – Richard Perle Redux

By Justin Gardner | Related entries in Dumb Things Said By Smart People, Foreign Policy, History, Partisan Hacks, Quotes

“There is no such thing as a neoconservative foreign policy.”
- Richard Perle talking to a gathering sponsored by National Interest magazine.


Dana Milbank digs through this nonsense…

So what about the 1996 report he co-authored that is widely seen as the cornerstone of neoconservative foreign policy? “My name was on it because I signed up for the study group,” Perle explained. “I didn’t approve it. I didn’t read it.”

Mm-hmm. And the two letters to the president, signed by Perle, giving a “moral” basis to Middle East policy and demanding military means to remove Saddam Hussein? “I don’t have the letters in front of me,” Perle replied.

Right. And the Bush administration National Security Strategy, enshrining the neoconservative themes of preemptive war and using American power to spread freedom? “I don’t know whether President Bush ever read any of those statements,” Perle maintained. “My guess is he didn’t.”

Gotta love the logic, eh?

Just because Bush doesn’t read it means that the neoconservative foreign policy doesn’t exist.

Brilliant stuff.

Steve Benen points out that the folks at the talk found it equally amusing…

It was apparently quite a performance, which literally drew laughter when Perle insisted, “I’ve never advocated attacking Iran.” He added that he doesn’t “accept” the notion that there’s even a “neoconservative school of thought,” and said his book, “An End to Evil,” is actually a text devoted to realism. “There’s hardly an ideology in that book,” Perle said.

As Milbank reminds us, the book argues, “There is no middle way for Americans: It is victory or holocaust. This book is a manual for victory.” No, no ideology there.

Apparently, at the end of yesterday’s event, the moderator thanked Perle for being there: “You certainly kept us all entertained.”

And scene.

This entry was posted on Friday, February 20th, 2009 and is filed under Dumb Things Said By Smart People, Foreign Policy, History, Partisan Hacks, Quotes. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

4 Responses to “Quote Of The Day – Richard Perle Redux”

  1. Adi Lene Says:

    lol, right just because he “din’t read it” come on

  2. mw Says:

    The best thing you can do with a guy like Perle is laugh him off the stage.

  3. sobe Says:


  4. Sara Says:

    mw Says: “The best thing you can do with a guy like Perle is laugh him off the stage.”

    …and follow it with a shoe aimed at his posterior.

Leave a Reply


You must ALWAYS fill in the two word CAPTCHA below to submit a comment. And if this is your first time commenting on Donklephant, it will be held in a moderation queue for approval. Please don't resubmit the same comment a couple times. We'll get around to moderating it soon enough.

Also, sometimes even if you've commented before, it may still get placed in a moderation queue and/or sent to the spam folder. If it's just in moderation queue, it'll be published, but it may be deleted if it lands in the spam folder. My apologies if this happens but there are some keywords that push it into the spam folder.

One last note, we will not tolerate comments that disparage people based on age, sex, handicap, race, color, sexual orientation, national origin or ancestry. We reserve the right to delete these comments and ban the people who make them from ever commenting here again.

Thanks for understanding and have a pleasurable commenting experience.

Related Posts: