If I were asked to boil down neoconservatism to its essential elements—that is, those that have remained consistent over the past nearly 50 years—I would cite the following:
a Manichean view of a world in which good and evil are constantly at war and the United States has an obligation to lead forces for good around the globe.
a belief in the moral exceptionalism of both the United States and Israel and the absolute moral necessity for the U.S. to defend Israel’s security.
a conviction that, in order to keep evil at bay, the United States must have—and be willing to exercise—the military power necessary to defeat any and all challengers. There’s a corollary: force is the only language that evil understands.
the 1930s—with Munich, appeasement, Chamberlain, Churchill—taught us everything we need to know about evil and how to fight it.
democracy is generally desirable, but it always depends on who wins.