ABSTRACT: Neoconservatism, with its emphasis on an assertive United States foreign policy, became politically prominent during the Reagan presidency and later during George W. Bush’s administration. In the wake of Iraq, libertarians and non-interventionist conservatives have called for a rethinking of American foreign policy and an end to preemptive military strikes. The candidacy of Ron Paul and the rise of the liberty movement are currently seen as outside of the conservative mainstream. Paul’s view favouring noninterventionist foreign policy, however, is not an aberration. In fact it has deep roots in the American conservative intellectual tradition. The paper analyzes the rhetoric between neoconservatives and libertarians leading up to and after the invasion of Iraq, demonstrates the deep division in American conservatism and explains the rise of the liberty movement in the United States.
AUTHOR: Marcus Witcher (firstname.lastname@example.org) earned a BA from the University of Central Arkansas where he majored in history and minored in economics. He earned his MA from the University of Alabama in 2013 and is working on his PhD. Most of his research focuses on political and economic history and he plans to write his dissertation on the rise of modern conservatism in the United States.
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