Ledeen's ritual tip of the hat to Rice's unremarkable and superficial non-intellectual accomplishments - piano and working out - give way to lauding her attempt to blame the Iraq mess on the Iranians. This is a frame AEI can get behind. Yet for Rice it is merely a personal vehicle to deflect blame for U.S. incompetence — it is all the fault of Iranians. Yet she plays into Ledeen's hands by refusing to call for military action. Her intellectual incoherence Ledeen claims is revealed by her opposition to the Iran Freedom Act which snuck through Congress last Friday. Barbara Ledeen works for the Act's sponsor, Senator Rick Santorum. AEI remains unbowed.
If Card's “hit by the bus” notebook for cabinet replacements is an indication what Bolten might be thinking, a James Baker or Dan Choates would not be so inclined. Why would either man would stoop to replace Rumsfeld at this tardy date? Especially with the dysfunction elsewhere still in place. A Lieberman on the other hand would feel very much at home. Fully a Neocon in heart and soul, a member of the resurrected Committee on the Present Danger, etc., Lieberman would bring his own form of Joementum to OSD. We very much doubt, however, the uniformed military will roll over for soporific Lieberman.
It is true that the White House remains firmly in the AEI grip. Recall that the arrested Claude Allen's replacement in the White House domestic policy advisor's office came from AEI. But Tehran can thank Bob Woodward, Mark Foley and the possibility of a Democrat Congress for rendering much of this baying at the Moon.
Updated: 03-10-06: The Brits pull one rug out from under the U.S. schtick.