Your enemy’s enemy may not be a friend


Aside from “live and let live,” one of the neoconservatives’ most important guiding principles can be found in the old saying, “The enemy of my enemy is my friend.” The result of this has been no shortage of misadventures overseas. For example, under “Operation Cyclone,” the United States provided $7.4 billion in direct assistance to Pakistan to facilitate support of the Mujahideen during the Soviet–Afghan War (1979-1989) with “more than $20 billion in U.S. funds [being] funneled into the country to train and arm the Afghan resistance groups” with the sale of “non-U.S. arms to Pakistan for destination to Afghanistan [being] facilitated by Israel.” Similarly, during the Iran–Iraq War (1980-1988), President Reagan saw an opportunity to use Iraq against Iran, so he removed Iraq from the list of state sponsors of terrorism in February 1982 and normalized diplomatic relations in 1984 after they had been severed during the Six-Day War (1967). During that time, the United States also guaranteed $5 billion worth of agricultural loans for Iraq in addition to providing arms, intelligence, dual-use technology, and so on. As history has shown us, the United States was rewarded for its efforts with the Gulf War (1990-1991), Afghan War (2001-Present), War on Terror (2001-Present), and Iraq War (2003-Present); all seeing former “allies” turned against Americans.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at