Daily Beast Demonstrates Our Success

On 10/17/17, The Daily Beast (hardly a friend of the London Center) had this to say about our center:

  • “But still some important themes emerge from the white papers, books and speeches that London Center fellows produce, and taken together they provide a possible template for how the Trump administration will proceed in its foreign policy, especially if Trump sheds some of his current minders and reverts back to the kind of people who were advising him during the campaign and the transition.”
  • “The London Center tends to not support a runaway military buildup, fearful that deficits strain national security as much as an enemy abroad would. There is a consistent through-line on most of the London Center fellows writing that the existing international institutions, like NATO, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank are failing, and new multilateral but limited institutions should arise in their place.

“London and his stable of fellows call for a foreign policy stance somewhere between the neoconservative interventionist tendencies of the Bush administration and non-interventionist backlash to that led by Rand Paul and others. London calls for what he has termed “Defense Condominiums” in global hotspots, micro-alliances of friendly nations convened by the U.S. to counter global rivals, such as a South Korean/Japanese/Vietnamese/Taiwanese alliance in southeast Asia to confront a rising China and a bellicose North Korea, or an alliance between Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan to counter Iran.”

“I am not an isolationist, nor am I an internationalist. My feeling is that the United States has gone through a very difficult period as a result of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, and we have to think of something between unilateral investment of American blood and treasure in certain parts of the world, and at the same time the avoidance of what is happening on the international front,” London said. “The notion that our choices are isolation or war strikes me as not understanding the alternatives. There is a possibility of creating defense arrangements where nations with similar points of view come together and provide the military assets that are necessary for stabilization.”

  • “London saw this vision reach its fullest reckoning in Trump’s speech in Riyadh, when he called on Middle Eastern leaders to combat “a crisis of Islamic extremism” and hailed their efforts in countering the rise of Iran. The speech shared many ideas with a London Center white paper that called for a “Gulf and Red Sea Treaty Organization” that would act as a Sunni NATO with American support.”

“According to London, former White House spokesman Sean Spicer sent him a letter thanking him for producing the white paper. “If you read the speech and you read our statements, they are almost exactly the same,” London said. “So I feel very confident in saying we played a role.”

  • “There is an awareness of human nature that they have that makes them unique in the think tank world,” said one senior Hill aide who has sat in on several of the London Center sessions. “Their kind of thing is that we don’t need to send 200,000 troops into Syria and turn it into a bicameral legislative constitutional Jacksonian democracy, or anything like that, but that we need to identify realistic goals that we can accomplish that will shore up American security.”
  • “Egypt has been a very reliable ally to the U.S. in the Middle East, and the London Center has seen that relationship go down the drain under the Obama administration,” said Michael Morgan, am Egyptian-born London Center senior fellow whom London has described as his adopted son and who hosts a weekly TV program broadcast in Egypt called “American Pulse.” “Sisi took back the country after it was hijacked by the Muslim Brotherhood, and Herb was able to see very clearly from the outset that a stable Egypt was in America’s interests and central to a stable Middle East.”
  • “A senior White House official, who wasn’t authorized to speak publicly, confirmed that administration officials are in regular contact with fellows from the London Center.”

“There aren’t very many folks in the conservative foreign policy world who have their kinds of views,” the official said. “They are really unique in that sense.”

“For London, this last year has been a pleasant surprise. After a long career on the periphery of conservative intellectual thought, he has gathered up a rogue collection of fellow travelers who suddenly find themselves in the center of power. Depending on how the wheel turns in the administration, many of their ideas and policy recommendations could become central to how the White House conducts foreign policy.”

“You talk to people at the Council on Foreign Relations, where I am a member, and probably 80 percent of them, on the left and the right, opposed Trump. They have become so ossified in the views they have about the past, that they can’t consider the changes that are occurring on the world stage,” London said. “Many of them just can’t accept Trump. I can.”