In the beginning, there is Chomsky. "It's tempting to go back to the beginning. "The beginning goes pretty far back, but it is useful to think about some aspects of American history that bear directly on current U.S. policy in the Middle East. "The U.S. is a pretty unusual country in many ways. "It's maybe the only country in the world that was founded as an empire. "It was an infant empireas George Washington called itand the founding fathers had broad aspirations. "The most libertarian of them, Thomas Jefferson, thought that this infant empire should spread and become what he called the 'nest' from which the entire continent would be colonized. "That would get rid of the 'Red,' the Indians as they'd be driven away or exterminated. "The Blacks would be sent back to Africa when we don't need them anymore and the Latins will be eliminated by a superior race." Does American history, with its settler colonialist mentality, resonate with US support for Israel's current policies in the occupied territories? Is today's "Iranian Threat" the latest manifestation of John Quincy Adams's grand strategy of security through expansion, the belief "...that you can't really have security until you control everything"?