Michael Ledeen

From Academic Kids

Michael Ledeen (born August 1, 1941) is an expert on U.S. foreign policy, contributing editor to the National Review and the Jewish World Review, and a resident scholar (Freedom Scholar) at the American Enterprise Institute. Ledeen was a founding member of the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs and he continues to serve on the JINSA Board of Advisors.

Ledeen holds a PhD from the University of Wisconsin, where he specialized in the comparative history of German and Italian fascism. One of Ledeen's principle mentors was the German-born historian George Mosse. Ledeen's political ideas are said to have influenced or inspired the Bush administration. He is a staunch neoconservative.

Ledeen advocates notions of "total war" and "creative destruction" in the service of democracy, a view some critics disparage as "totalitarian".

Ledeen was a major figure in the biggest foreign policy scandal of the Ronald Reagan administration. As a secret agent of National Security Adviser Robert C. McFarlane, Ledeen vouched for Iranian arms dealer Manucher Ghorbanifar, and along with Oliver North, met with Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres, and officers of Mossad and the CIA to arrange the illegal weapons-for-hostages deal with Iran that would become known as Iran-Contra scandal.1

He was also a vocal proponent of the theory that the Bulgarian Secret Service was behind the plot to assassinate Pope John Paul II, a theory that was later rejected by the Italian Courts.

Regarding regime change in the Middle East, in 2002 Ledeen criticized the views of former National Security Adviser Brent Scowcroft, writing:

He fears that if we attack Iraq "I think we could have an explosion in the Middle East. It could turn the whole region into a caldron and destroy the War on Terror." One can only hope that we turn the region into a cauldron, and faster, please. If ever there were a region that richly deserved being cauldronized, it is the Middle East today. If we wage the war effectively, we will bring down the terror regimes in Iraq, Iran, and Syria, and either bring down the Saudi monarchy or force it to abandon its global assembly line to indoctrinate young terrorists. That's our mission in the war against terror.2

In September 2002, Ledeen's book, The War Against the Terror Masters (ISBN: 031230644X) was published.


References

  • [1] (http://www.fas.org/irp/offdocs/walsh/) FINAL REPORT OF THE INDEPENDENT COUNSEL FOR IRAN/CONTRA MATTERS Volume I: "Investigations and Prosecution", Lawrence E. Walsh, Independent Counsel, 4 August 4 1993, Washington, D.C.
  • [2] (http://www.nationalreview.com/ledeen/ledeen080602a.asp) Michael Ledeen, "Scowcroft Strikes Out," National Review, 6 August 2002.


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