WITH A VENGEANCE
also berates his fallen hero for not intervening in Rwanda,
and even calls for the revival of a military draft. This last
is done in the name of egalitarianism,
of course. As long as everybody fights and dies in a foreign
war, it's okay with Talbot: equality, in the liberals' litany,
is an absolute good. That all slaves are equal has never bothered
egalitarians in the past, and it troubles them even less now.
The post-9/11 left-liberal agenda is perfectly served by the
war fever. Even, amazingly, the anti-military agenda of the
Clintonians, which they never bother to hide.
a great deal of Talbot's screed is directed at Colin Powell,
the resident dove in an administration of hawks: Salon's editor echoes the neoconservative charge that Powell failed
to "finish the job" during the Gulf War. The Pentagon,
Talbot points out, is the most "isolationist" force
in American politics, and the generals (embodied by Powell),
in their reluctance to promiscuously intervene overseas, have
been the ones most traumatized by the "Vietnam syndrome."
The generals, in short, are cowards, and it's time our brave
liberals, like Talbot who avers that political leaders
must themselves be willing to personally fight the wars they
advocate, or else have their children as stand-ins
called them on it.
Lord! Is there nothing this opportunistic chameleon won't
say to satisfy his need to feel self-righteous? From "give
peace a chance" pacifism to more-macho-than-thou the
David Talbots of this world are in the forefront of every
how the new liberal dispensation conforms almost perfectly
with the neoconservative line on every foreign policy issue
since the Gulf War. Talbot recants marching against that war,
and goes on to embrace the Big Lie of Serb "exterminationism,"
without mentioning that the victims of the "genocide"
supposedly carried out by the Serbs in Kosovo turned out to
be a few hundred Kosovar terrorists. Talbot rejects the "pacifistic"
legacy that supposedly motivated him and his fellow peaceniks
to oppose the Vietnam War, and goes on to explain how he came
to be an advocate of projecting American military power as
a "civilizing" force in the world.
"give peace a chance" to "give war a chance"
is not that great a betrayal for our spineless 1960s-style
left-liberals, who never believed in anything but their own
specialness to begin with. It is just that specialness, after
all, which exempts them from having any moral compunctions
about such a shamelessly unprincipled reversal.
so Left Coast liberals who want to transform the whole world
into Marin county join with "compassionate" conservatives,
Barone, who can only be truly inspired by visions of "national
greatness": together they have created a new national
consensus in favor of Empire. And to think that this is only
Part I of Talbot's liberal interventionist manifesto! The
next installment, we are promised, will deal with the question
of whether (or, no doubt, how) to invade Iraq. Oh boy, one can hardly wait…
really, we needn't even read it: for Talbot, the dove sprouting
hawk feathers, lays the groundwork for imposing "democracy"
on the Middle East in the first part of his essay. According
to him, Saddam Hussein is "the most bloodstained and
dangerous dictator in power today." Somehow the remaining
Communist countries seemed to have slipped his mind. Is Saddam
really more demonic than the rulers of, say, North Korea?
What about China and Cuba? The dark lord of the Cuban
gulag is no less sinister than the Butcher of Baghdad
yet how come we don't hear any calls for a Bay of Pigs II
coming from Talbot's direction?
at the end of history, the conservative lion lies down with
the liberal lamb, and all are united in a single party: the
War Party. Left, Right, and center, all are marching off the
precipice, ready to sacrifice the remnants of our old Republic
because, after all, everything's
changed, and it's time to make the Big Change from
republic to Empire.
both wings of the same War Party are going along with this
massive US invasion of Central Asia should come as no surprise.
There has been virtually no debate over foreign policy for
some 25 years, and the whole purpose of the war consensus
is to make sure that this remains the case. There has been
a very effective campaign by the court intellectuals
the Andrew Sullivans and David Horowitz clones on the right,
and the Christopher Hitchens-David Talbot brigade on the left
to demonize any and all dissent. Anyone who breathes
so much as a word of criticism is immediately caricaturized
as a supporter of Al Qaeda, a Johnny Walker who ought to be
stood up against a wall and shot. And, who knows, before this
is all over, it just may come to that….
TIME WILL COME
for the opponents of the War Party, on the right as well as
the left, what hope is there, after all? The dogs of war are
unleashed, and the mob is howling down our message. Let them
howl, then. Our time will come. The military draft Talbot,
in his perverse nostalgia, pines for, would create a mass
movement in response, and wake up the young to the folly of
their elders. The cycle, having come full circle, would be
repeated again although, perhaps, this time with new
intensity, since the stakes are higher.
no mistake about it: what is at stake here is whether or not
the US is going to fight World War III. The propaganda campaign
to invade and conquer Iraq is, in effect, a proposal to invade
and conquer the entire Arab world: to start and "win"
a civilizational war in order to seize the the world's oil
supplies, appease the Israeli lobby and subjugate a
billion-plus Muslims in the process.
is madness, but who will dare to say it in the present atmosphere?
The War Party is hoping that they can set the terms of the
debate, and that, therefore, no real debate will ever occur.
What they want is to intimidate any potential opposition from
consolidating, and, if necessary, even illegalize most opposition
to their war plans. While this latter may seem far-fetched,
or even completely out of the question, think of how quickly
that could change if another terrorist attack is carried out
WARNING, AND A GUIDE TO ACTION
are but a few steps away from imposing martial law in this
country, and, if that comes, there will be opposition: the
blood of the Founders has not been entirely diluted. Of one
thing you can be sure: this final transition to Empire will
not take place without a furious fight. Whether victory is
likely for the partisans of our old Republic, or even possible,
is the kind of speculation that every writer should avoid,
unless he is ready, willing and able to go in for writing
novels. In the present circumstances, all I can do is cite
the prescient words of Garet
Garrett, which must serve as a warning and a guide to
you have to face is that the cost of saving the Republic may
be extremely high. It could be relatively as high as the cost
of setting it up in the first place, one hundred and seventy-five
years ago, when love of political liberty was a mighty passion,
and people were willing to die for it."
that mighty passion can be rekindled, or has flickered out
beyond hope of revival, is a subject for a book, rather than
a mere article. But remember that the passion of a few can
over come the apathy, lethargy, and ignorance of the many,
and that in any battle worth fighting it is always the most
passionate who will likely win out. I can say, without oversimplifying
matters, that the American people will never fight for Empire,
and that a war for conquest can only be disguised as a war
for vengeance, or justice, for so long. So, to the antiwar
movement, left and right, I can only say: be patient. Our
moment has not yet arrived. Until it does, let us expose the
lies of the War Party and get ready for the day when the people
are ready to hear the truth. That day, I reckon, is not far.
us also take consolation in the undoubted truth that the antiwar
movement is a lot better off without Talbot and his fellow
greybearded hippies. It was they, after all, who gave the
movement its wimpish, wishy-washy tie-dyed look: let them
celebrate the alleged "liberation" of Afghan women
by the US and its pet "freedom fighters" of the
moment, and fatuously declare, as Vanity Fair's resident socialist
did, that Afghanistan has been "bombed out of the Stone
Left is merely doing what comes naturally: warmongering is
one of their most sacred traditions. It was, after all, the
American Communist Party that beat the war drums the loudest
just prior to our entry into the last world war. It was the
Commies and their tens of thousands of fellow travelers at
the time who denounced the antiwar movement as "Hitler's
fifth column" and called for their prosecution as "traitors"
well before Pearl Harbor. This leopard never really changed
its spots, except superficially, and is now rapidly reverting
to its natural coloration: a screaming blood-bright red.
IS THE HEALTH OF THE STATE
as Randolph Bourne famously averred, is the health of the
State. Every giant step on the road to centralized government
and state socialism was taken under the pretext of a "wartime
emergency," and every attempt to increase government
power is invariably declared to be a "war." The
"war on drugs," the "war on poverty,"
the "war on teenage pregnancy," the list of social
engineering schemes launched in the style of a military campaign
describes practically all of the major failed government boondoggles
of the past forty years.
wartime the State is all-powerful and its legitimacy is unquestioned
except in defeat. Government officials can get away
with anything in the name of winning a war
and so the idea is to declare one as often
as possible. The Left's almost religious faith in the power
of government to cure practically all social ills is ideally
suited to a time of perpetual crisis, dislocation, and fear.
Big Government, once thought to be totally discredited, is
now making an amazing comeback and that's why Talbot
and the folks at Salon have suddenly seen the light and learned to love the bomb.
NOTE: DELISO GOES TO MACEDONIA!
a grand "anti-terrorist" alliance goes on a hunt
for Muslim terrorists, what is forgotten is that the US was
and still is backing these very same Muslim terrorists in
southeastern Europe. Al Qaeda was and still is a
presence in the Balkans, where bin Laden's "mujahedeen"
fought side-by-side with Bosnian Muslim military units and
the Kosovo Liberation Army: one has difficulty believing that
few arrests recently made in Bosnia even scratched the
surface of the Evil One's underground assets in the region.
So I am pleased to report that Chris Deliso, a very
talented and knowledgeable scholar of Byzantine civilization
whose writings have often graced our pages, is traveling to
Macedonia the center of the Balkan maelstrom
within days. He will be sending us reports from that now-forgotten
battlefield, so look for his byline: this is going to be very interesting….
of $50 or more will get you a copy of Ronald Radosh's out-of-print
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