THE NEOCON AEI GRAND PLAN….Phil McCombs has a pretty interesting article in today’s Washington Post about the whole neocon agenda for international affairs. The interesting thing, however, is that he never uses the word “neocon.” It’s the same cast of characters, but in his article they’ve all morphed into members of the AEI mafia:

You could see it one recent morning as 20 protesters marched in front of the nondescript downtown Washington office building where the American Enterprise Institute is located.

Their chant, reminiscent of the Vietnam era: “Hey hey! Ho ho! Richard Perle has gotta go!” Perle is an avuncular guy based at AEI whose job is to sit around and think, and talk with other thinkers — like Cohen and Woolsey — about global strategy. Which is just what he’s doing inside, in a “Black Coffee Briefing” on “The Road to War and Beyond.”

….In short, if there’s a new American Imperium, the AEI group is its intellectual Praetorian Guard. Some 20 AEI scholars serve in the Bush administration, and though Cohen isn’t on today’s panel, he’s a member of AEI’s Council of Academic Advisers, present in spirit.

McCombs also gives us a good rundown of the whole “World War IV” meme that’s so popular these days.

(What’s that? Did you miss a war during your American history class? No, no, not at all, it’s just that all the cool kids know that the Cold War was World War III, which upgrades our current War on Terror to World War IV. It’s an easy mistake to make, so don’t blame yourself for not getting it, but you better read McCombs’ article if you want to catch up in time for the final.)