I’m not sure, but I think the launch of Keep America Safe (KAS) — the new neoconservative front group headed by Bill Kristol and Liz Cheney — means that there are now more neoconservative front groups than there are actual neoconservatives.
In February we had the launch of the Foreign Policy Initiative, an attempt to reboot and rebrand the neoconservative Project for the New American Century (PNAC) after all of PNAC’s claims about the great benefits to be derived from American invasions and occupations of various foreign countries were revealed as so much bong smoke. FPI kicked off with a conference on Afghanistan described by board member Bob Kagan as “a bipartisan love-fest.” That love had clearly evaporated by the time of FPI’s sparsely attended conference last month, as it had become clear that President Obama wasn’t completely sold on neoconservative solutions to an Afghanistan crisis largely created by neoconservative incompetence.
From its website and comments from its two heads, it looks like KAS will essentially function as the street-fighting arm of the more “serious,” policy-oriented FPI, kind of like the Jaysh al-Mahdi functioned as the militia wing of the Sadrist trend, except that the Sadrists actually represent a genuine constituency, and aren’t just a few dozen people with a stack of cash and a bunch of think tanks and magazines run out of a couple of DC offices. If history is any guide, the latest neocon effort will be far less concerned with actually getting the policy right than it will with scoring partisan political points and finding new venues for Bill Kristol to say clever and outrageous things that turn out to be completely wrong.