Neo-Con Secret Session on "Iran Confrontation" Follows Cheney's Mideast Trip; Iraq War Genius" Bernard Lewis To Speak"
<body><div id="article"><tr><td height="28" valign="middle" width="184"></td><td valign="middle" width="185"></td></tr><h1>Neo-Con Secret Session on "Iran Confrontation" Follows Cheney's Mideast Trip; Iraq War Genius Bernard Lewis To Speak</h1><p>May 23, 2007 (LPAC)--Journalist Jim Lobe has exposed (in LobeLog) a meeting underway now in the Bahamas, by leading neo-Cons, to plot a new "confrontation" strategy on Iran. The meeting is to include Gulf and Middle East specialists, at Westin's luxurious Our Lucaya Resort on Grand Bahama Island. The meeting takes place May 30 to June 1, Lobe writes. It is organized by the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), a neo-con outfit set up two days after 9/11. The "policy workshop" over the Memorial Day weekend, is to discuss U.S. strategy for confrontation with Iran.</p><p>Lobe's report quotes from the invitation letter sent out by FDD president Clifford May, which says the the workshop, entitled "Confronting The Iranian Threat: The Way Forward," will gather "30 or so leading experts who will analyze the implications of Iran's activities, the diplomatic challenges, military and intelligence capabilities, the spread of its ideology within and beyond its borders, and other issues, including the prospects for democratization in the Islamic world, energy security and other related issues that face policymakers in the United States, Europe and the Middle East."</p><p>Among the experts invited are "Under Secretary of State for Democracy and Global Affairs, Paula Dobriansky; the hard-line Iran country director in the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) and Office of Special Plans (OSP) alumna, Ladan Archin; the recently-departed State Department Coordinator of Counterterrorism, Amb. Henry Crumpton; the former Deputy Assistant Secretary for Intelligence and Analysis at the Treasury Department, Matthew Levitt, who is now with the pro-Israel Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP). The administration's new UN Ambassador, Zalmay Khalilzad, has also been invited, although his duties as next month's Security Council president may make it difficult for him to travel. In any case, his spouse, Cheryl Benard, who directs the RAND Center for Middle East Public Policy, is confirmed," Lobe reports. "Uri Lubrani, the chief Iran advisor to Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, is also expected to participate."</p><p>Furthermore, the inventor of the "clash of civilizations" doctrine, British Foreign Office veteran and "crusader" Bernard Lewis, will open the meeting with a speech on Iran's regional ambitions. "Rob Sobhani ... who helped found, along with Michael Ledeen and several other AEI fellows, the Coalition for Democracy in Iran in 2002, has also been invited, as has one of Lewis' most devoted protégés, AEI fellow and former Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) operative, Reuel Marc Gerecht," according to Lobe.</p><p>Finally, invitees include anti-proliferation expert Henry Sokolski, vice president of the neo-Conservative American Foreign Policy Council (AFPC) and author of the rather sensationalist <em>Tehran Rising</em> . Journalists from the Wall Street Journal, like Bret Stephens, and Matt Kaminski, as well as London Times editor Gerard Baker, have also been invited, as well as Amir Taheri.</p></div></body>