Perry's Pals: Neocons And Sharia Panickers

Josh Rogin takes a look at Rick Perry's foreign policy brain trust, and quotes a Perry adviser who says he'd be a "hawk internationalist."

"He will distinguish himself from other Republicans as a hawk internationalist, embracing American exceptionalism and the unique role we must play in confronting the many threats we face," one foreign policy advisor with knowledge of Perry's thinking told The Cable. "He has no sympathy for the neo-isolationist impulses emanating from some quarters of the Republican Party."

Here's the list Rogin compiles:

The experts that he has reached out to include former Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Doug Feith, former NSC strategy guru William Luti, former Assistant U.S. Attorney and National Review columnist Andrew McCarthy, former Pentagon official Charles "Cully" Stimson, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Europe Daniel Fata, former Pentagon China official Dan Blumenthal, the Heritage Foundation's Asia expert Peter Brookes, and former U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Zalmay Khalizad.

This is a pretty neoconservative list, with one significant exception: McCarthy, who has written that "What really increases terrorist recruitment is invading Muslim countries, killing Muslims there, and staying to try to build Western democracies."

What McCarthy adds to Perry's slate is a paranoid disdain for individual rights and due process, a commitment to the crackpot conspiracy theory that American Muslims are trying to establish sharia law in the United States, unequivocal support for torture, and the lunatic belief that President Barack Obama is doing the bidding of the Muslim Brotherhood. So not only is Perry taking advice from the people who brought you the Iraq war, he's listening to someone who rejects the only redeeming tenet of Bush's foreign policy, a refusal to endorse the idea that the extremist Islam of Osama bin Laden is the correct one. 

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