To the editor: It's certainly understandable that Jonah Goldberg would want to put the term "neoconservative" out to pasture. He thinks all conservatives are really neocons now anyway. ("It's time to put the term 'neocon' out to pasture," Opinion, Jan. 5)
But the real reason a conservative would want to retire "neocon" is because the term conjures up the absolute fiasco of the Republican regime that ran the country from 2001-09.
It's hard for neocon sympathizers to criticize President Obama or former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for the increasing debacle in the Middle East without being reminded that the neocons started the ball rolling in the first place with the invasion and occupation of Iraq. Obama may have made mistakes since then, but at least he's not President Bush or Dick Cheney or John Bolton or Richard Perle or any number of Iraq war supporters.
So for Goldberg, the best solution is to make "neocon" go away.
Philip Brimble, Los Angeles
To the editor: How is it that Goldberg can write an entire column on neoconservatives and fail to mention the Project for the New American Century's 1997 treatise, "Rebuilding America's Defenses: Strategies, Forces, and Resources for a New Century"?
This document clearly laid out an unapologetically aggressive stance for regime change around the world to further the interests of the United States, especially in the Middle East.
For Goldberg to claim that "the idea that self-identified neocons are uniformly more 'pro-war' than other conservatives is ludicrous" without considering the impact of this important neoconservative document on our foreign policy at the beginning of the 21st Century is, well, ludicrous.
Conservatism comes in many flavors. Some are quite isolationist in nature; neoconservatism is not one of them.
Eric Fitzgerald, Topanga