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"Having led the West to victory in the Cold War, America faces an opportunity and a challenge.
"Does the United States have the vision to build upon the achievement of past decades?
"Does the United States have the resolve to shape a new century favourable to American principles and interests?
"[What we require] is a military that is strong... a foreign policy that boldly and purposefully promotes American interests... and a national leadership that accepts the United States' global responsibility."
Further, the process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some
catastrophic and catalyzing event like a new Pearl Harbor.
AEI's Program on International Economics encompasses international trade, globalization, and international financial and regulatory bodies (such as the World Trade Organization, World Bank, and the International Monetary Fund). Scholars in the Program on International Economics, including Claude Barfield, Philip I. Levy, Desmond Lachman, and Allan H. Meltzer, strongly favor free trade. Much of AEI's recent work on trade focuses on the Doha Development Round and why it has failed to gain traction.. The AEI Press has published several volumes on trade in services negotiations.
A Carlyle executive said the bin Laden family committed $2 million through a London investment arm in Carlyle Partners II Fund, which raised $ 1.3 billion overall. The fund has purchased several aerospace companies among 29 deals. So far, the family received $1.3. million back in completed investments and should ultimately realize a 40% annualized rate of return, the Carlyle executive said.
But a foreign financier with ties to the bin Laden family says the family's overall investment with Carlyle is considerably larger. He called the $2 million merely an initial contribution. "It's like plowing a field," this person said. "You seed it once. You plow it, and then you reseed it again."
A U.S. inquiry into bin Laden family business dealings could brush against some big names associated with the U.S. government. Former President Bush said through his chief of staff, Jean Becker, that he recalled only one meeting with the bin Laden family, which took place in November 1998. Ms. Becker confirmed that there was a second meeting in January 2000, after being read the ex-president's subsequent thank-you note. "President Bush does not have a relationship with the bin Laden family," says Ms. Becker. "He's met them twice."
Though Carlyle itself has won no contracts, the companies it has owned or controlled have done billions of dollars worth of business with the Pentagon. The Carlyle unit that brought in the largest share—$5.8 billion—was United Defense Inc., which manufactures combat vehicles, artillery, naval guns, missile launchers and precision munitions. United Defense also owns the country's largest non-nuclear ship repair, modernization, overhaul and conversion company, United States Marine Repair Inc. Its most famous product may well be the Bradley fighting vehicle. United Defense brought in more than 60 percent of Carlyle's defense business.
Carlyle took United Defense public in 2001; by April 2004 it had sold all its shares in the company.
United Defense has the widest product line of systems for land forces and a strong position in naval armaments. UDI, headquartered in Arlington, Va., is a leading US defense company which generated annual sales in 2004 of $2,292 million. It designs, develops and produces combat vehicles, artillery systems, naval guns, missile launchers and precision munitions, used by the U.S. Department of Defense and allies worldwide, and provides non-nuclear ship repair, modernization and conversion to the U.S. Navy and other U.S. Government agencies. UDI employs approximately 8,000 people in 25 locations in the U.S. and Sweden.
From its founding in 1987, the Carlyle Group has pioneered investing in the defense and national security markets, and through its takeover of companies with billions of dollars in defense contracts became one of the U.S. military's top vendors, ranking among better known defense firms like Lockheed Martin, Boeing Co., Raytheon Co., Northrop Grumman and General Dynamics.