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American Enterprise Institute
William Kristol, Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz
William Kristol, Richard Perle and Paul Wolfowitz
The American Enterprise Institute (AEI) is another home to many leading neo-conservatives in Washington.

It counts several of the key policy shapers in the White House among its members, including former chair of the Defence Policy Board Richard Perle.

Other notable luminaries in the group include Newt Gingrich, the former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Michael Ledeen, who is close to the White House and former Bush speechwriter David Frum.

In fact, President George W Bush himself lavished praise on the group at one of the AEI's dinners which he attended in early 2003.

The group says it is "dedicated to preserving and strengthening the foundations of freedom" through scholarly research, open debate, and publications.

Black coffee briefing

According to its website, the foundations of freedom include preserving private enterprise, political institutions, a strong foreign policy and national defence.

The group has become well known for its "black coffee briefings" in which key neo-conservatives gather to explain their thinking to the world.

They regularly attract large crowds of journalists and diplomats to these meetings, as these people know that the thinking of the AEI often mirrors that of the White House.

The AEI was founded in 1943 and is based in Washington. Its research covers topics from economics and trade to social welfare and from government tax to foreign policies.

It does publish reports on a wide range of subjects, and in 1998 called for the International Monetary Fund to be abolished unless it agreed to far -reaching reforms.

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