September 13, 1999


It started in Bosnia, reached a crescendo in Kosovo, and now is completed in the case of East Timor: the complete transformation of the War Party. Called "hawks" in the US, during the dark days of the Cold War, and traditionally lampooned in England as "Colonel Blimps," these characters created a whole antiwar movement simply as a reaction to their murderous arrogance and repulsive personalities. Richard "Tricky Dick" Nixon, who became an archetype of human evil during the sixties, Robert McNamara, who used pseudo-scientific jargon to rationalize mass murder of Vietnamese civilians, and General Curtis E. LeMay, who ran with arch-segregationist George Wallace for vice president in 1968 and bellowed that he wanted to "bomb Vietnam back to the Stone Age." These guys were great villains, the best recruiters for the antiwar movement. Oh, for the good old days of General LeMay, who at least was honest about what it was he wanted and, indeed, what he represented: the spirit of the Stone Age incarnated in the modern world.


Those days, alas, are gone forever. Militarism, like every other institution in our rotten culture, has gone politically correct. The War Party has modernized, updated and streamlined itself, and, most importantly, it has learned to speak a different language: the language of "human rights," multiculturalism, and loony leftism. The "hawks" and the Colonel Blimps of old are gone, replaced by such notables as Rep. Barney Frank and Noam Chomsky.


Rep. Frank, until recently famous for his taste in call-boys, has now become one of the leading lights of the War Party. Having succeeded, at least in part, in his crusade for gays in the military, Frank has recently seemed all too eager to show how this new gay-friendly army can perform in action, so to speak. "An army of lovers can never be defeated" or so the ancient Greeks thought, and during the Kosovo war the leading congressional voice of Greek love could hardly wait to put this old adage to the test. Now he takes to the House floor and bellows that "the government of Indonesia should be made to understand the terrible consequences it will pay if it continues the barbarous oppression of the people of East Timor." Ah, and what price is that? Frank is fuzzy on the details, but clear about the moral "right" of the U.S. to intervene, unilaterally if necessary:


"To those who say we must withhold, let us look at Serbia and Kosovo. The moral case for an international force intervening in East Timor is as great as the moral case was in Kosovo, and the legal case is greater. We ignored Serbia's claim of sovereignty over Kosovo and gave in to the moral imperative to save people. In Indonesia, the government in power held a referendum. Overwhelmingly, in the face of great intimidation, the brave people of East Timor voted for independence. That gives us an even stronger right to send a multinational force in there."


Is it a hate crime to remember that Frank was charged, some years ago, with allowing a prostitution ring to be run out of his home? His live-in lover of the time, apparently an entrepreneurial type, used Frank's home and office to operate a male bordello – with Frank's knowledge if not his permission. Now, all my nice liberal readers are no doubt saying to themselves: "Oh, come on now, Justin! How is any of this relevant to the matter at hand?" I'll tell you how: because Frank has now poses as a moralist. There is no case for US intervention in East Timor, only a "moral case," as Frank puts it. Is it wrong to question the bona fides of this self-proclaimed moralist?


But that's not all: What is the basis of this moral claim on the US military, anyhow? Well, it seems they had an election in East Timor, and they voted on it, and so you see it's all settled: we have to go in. One can only wonder where it will all end. Will province after province the world over vote to secede from the "oppressive" (i.e. poor) motherland, and place themselves under the protection of the US and the UN?


I have another question: Much moral weight is given to the fact that the East Timorese voted for independence in a referendum, but how come only they get to vote on the matter? Since the United States is going to wind up sending the troops and paying the bills, how come we don't get to vote – and I don't mean in Congress, but in a popular referendum, just like the East Timorese? Well then, let's hear it: All those in favor of setting up another US protectorate, this time in South Asia, yet another mini-quagmire from which there is no escape, say "Aye!"


If such a vote were ever taken, the nays would be deafening – which is why it will never happen, short of a second American revolution. In the meantime, the elites in government and the media (or do I repeat myself?) determine what is best for the world in our name. And as their policies become more bizarre, more disconnected from any genuine American interest, so the spokesmen for the War Party take a turn for the worst. An even better example than the "moralist" Barney Frank, the nation's leading sodomite on Capitol Hill, is the nation's leading leftist curmudgeon, none other than the ferociously antiestablishment Professor Noam Chomsky, who has made a career out of blaming "Western imperialism" for all the world's problems. Now, without acknowledging any change in his position, Chomsky has made a complete turnabout, and openly calls on the evil Western imperialists to send in the Marines, to wit:


"If changing the former green light to a new red light does not suffice, Washington and its allies have ample means at their disposal: termination of arms sales to the killers; initiation of war crimes trials against the army leadership – not an insignificant threat; cutting the economic support funds that are, incidentally, not without their ambiguities; putting a hold on Western energy corporations and multinationals, along with other investment and commercial activities. There is also no reason to shy away from peacekeeping forces to replace the occupying terrorist army, if that proves necessary. Indonesia has no authority to 'invite' foreign intervention, as President Clinton urged, any more than Saddam Hussein had authority to invite foreign intervention in Kuwait, or Nazi Germany in France in 1944 for that matter. If dispatch of peacekeeping forces is disguised by such prettified terminology, it is of no great importance, as long as we do not succumb to illusions that prevent us from understanding what has happened, and what it portends."


From being the leading critic of US interventionism on the Left – and, by the way, a leading apologist for the crimes of leftist regimes in Southeast Asia – Chomsky now urges the former "colonialists" to use their power, economic and military, to secure East Timorese independence. Not only that, but he denies that there is any parallel to Kosovo on the grounds that the Indonesian invasion was never legitimate and went unrecognized by the UN. But the UN recognizes the old colonial power, Portugal, as the legal suzerain of East Timor – is that what Chomsky supports, a return to Portuguese rule? There is indeed an East Timorese faction that advocates reunion with Portugal, but it is somewhat startling to imagine that the world's leading opponent of Western colonialism has become a publicist for this position.


Of course, what Chomsky and his leftist pals over at Z Magazine really want is for the leftist Fretilin guerrilla insurgency to come to power, and they are perfectly willing to throw the "principle" of non-interventionism overboard in order to achieve "socialism" – even if it is socialism on one-half of a tiny impoverished island. Note the militant tone of the above quote: If we must "prettify" intervention, then so be it – but let's get on with it, he bellows. Who does this pipsqueak pinko college professor think he is – General Curtis "Bombs Away" LeMay?


Oh, and don't worry about any "illusions" we might have, Noam – especially when it comes to "humanitarians" such as yourself, whose blindness to the crimes of the Khmer Rouge is well-known. That a similar case of moral astigmatism afflicts you when it comes to the crimes of the leftist Fretilin is not all that surprising. And, oh yes, we know all too well "what has happened," Noam, as well as what it "portends" for the future. What has happened is that you have sold out the cause of peace and nonintervention – assuming you ever embraced it – and will spend the rest of your career as a leftist "curmudgeon" calling for the US to intervene on behalf of your favorite leftist rebels. Naturally, Noam's preferred instrument is the United Nations, but in an emergency situation – and in a radio interview, referring to the situation in East Timor, Chomsky declared that "there isn't much time to do anything about it" – the new interventionists of the Left are willing to take what they can get.


It isn't just Chomsky, and his tiny band of crunchy-granola leftists, who have sold out the cause of peace and opposition to US intervention. At least in Australia, a mass leftist warmongering movement has – frighteningly enough – taken to the streets. On September 11, the Agence France Presse reports that more than 20,000 protesters poured into the streets of Sydney, Australia, in support of "urgent action" in East Timor. Leftist speakers representing the unions and the left-wing of the opposition Labor Party denounced the "gutless" Australian government for not intervening forcefully fast enough. Screaming belligerent slogans such as "Howard You Coward" and "East Timor – Blood on Howard's Hands," the warlike socialists broke into Prime Minister John Howard's Sydney office.


Yelling "UN in, Indonesia out," the assorted leftists smashed the sliding glass doors until they gave way and occupied the office for all of five minutes. Instead of being arrested, they were allowed to leave voluntarily, and did so without incident. Boy, how times have changed: yesterday, the radical left was getting busted for defying the war machine, but now that they have taken up the cause of war as their own they get treated quite differently by the cops, escorted in and out of their various "protests" by a cordon of ever-so-helpful and kindly officers. How cozy!


Even more disgusting was the hyperventilated rhetoric coming from the speakers' platform, where a whole bevy of leftist politicos, union thugs, and "solidarity activists" held forth for a solid five hours. One by one they called for Howard to bring out the troops, bomb Jakarta to a smoking ruin, and boycott all Indonesian products – a slogan particularly popular with the unions, who would ban all South Asian exports to Australia if they could. The head of the largest trade union in the country threatened Australian retailers with picket lines and worse if they dared stock Indonesian goods. The unions were there in force, and effectively shut the whole city down while their leaders whipped the crowd into a war frenzy fraught with racist overtones and permeated with protectionist poison. Never mind all this nonsense about waiting for the UN, the US, or least of all Indonesian permission, speaker after speaker declared: in short, why not start a war with Indonesia, and be done with it?


Here the real character of the Left as authoritarian and naturally glorying in war comes out in all its ugliness. Here is the real face of the socialist movement. That the adherents of class war changed so readily and easily into advocates of plain old ordinary nation-to-nation war is shocking only to those whose historical memory doesn't extend much further back than the Vietnam war.


It wasn't all that long ago – from the perspective of history, that is – that the Left was agitating for US entry into World War II with the same vehemence that Chomsky & Co. now call for US entry into the South Asian quagmire. The Commies of yesteryear wanted American troops to open up what they called a "second front," in order to take the pressure off the great socialist fatherland, the Soviet Union, which was fighting desperately for its survival. If the Soviets and the Nazis had been allowed to destroy each other, Communism would not have emerged from the war as a viable movement, never mind triumphant over all of Eastern Europe. In alliance with American Anglophiles, and certain business interests, the Communists in the US and their army of fellow travelers were the biggest warmongers on the block. And as it was then, so it shall be again ...


Only, this time, there is no Soviet Union to save, no Kremlin whose orders are taken without question or dissent. There is just the World's Only Superpower, the one-and-only United States of America, and the essentially hollow shell of the UN. "Idealists" like Chomsky want to fill the UN shell with substance, and dream of an international army – consisting of American troops serving under foreign commanders, in obedience to the principles of multiculturalism and internationalism – enforcing the will of the UN in every corner of the globe. Others dream of a US empire, unilaterally imposing its will on a resentful world. The ends are the same: left and right-internationalists differ only in the means, the instrument, to accomplish their common goal. That is what international politics and the foreign policy debate in this country has come down to.


And here is where the secessionist angle comes into play. For secession is not exactly a principle that one would expect statists of any persuasion to embrace, and indeed as a principle it is popular on the anti-statist Right. But worshippers at the altar of the UN, such as Chomsky and his ilk, are for secession on the grounds that breaking down the nation-state is in itself a good thing. Nationalism has long been the enemy of socialist movements everywhere: if a one-world socialist government is your goal, then nationalists are your natural enemies, and will fight you every step of the way. Internationalists can support secession on the strategic grounds of "divide and conquer": if the nations of the world are reduced to tiny statelets, then who will stand against their New World Order?


The pattern could not be clearer: from the Caucasus to the Balkans to the sprawling archipelago of South Asia, the internationalists are supporting the atomization of the existing nation-states. A world splintered into thousands of principalities, "autonomous regions," and city-states is far easier for a single superpower to dominate than a collection of relatively larger and potentially unruly rivals.


I wonder, though, when it comes the turn of the US, whether Americans will take kindly to the prospect of national dissolution in favor of some purportedly higher international authority. This principle of internationalism, applied consistently, leads logically to the concept of a referendum held by the citizens of, say, California or Texas on the question of whether they prefer autonomy, independence, or continued "oppression" at the hands of the US government – which after all conquered both territories from Mexico in an act of imperialist aggression no less blatant than that committed by Indonesia against East Timor in 1975. Of course we can count on Noam Chomsky, and probably Barney Frank, to come down on the side of the rebels – who by that time will be able to claim the insurgents represent the "will of the majority" due to the demographic consequences of uncontrolled immigration, both legal and illegal. But what about the rest of the country? Are they ready for the Disunited States of America?


Speaking of immigration, Peter Brimelow reveals in his excellent book, Alien Nation, a conversation he had with Wall Street Journal editor Robert L. Bartley, in which the latter declared that nothing can be done about illegal immigration because "the destiny of Europe has already been decided in North Africa [because of the population explosion there]." Brimelow replied: "'That's a poor look-out for the nation-state.'" "'Oh yes,' he said calmly, 'I think the nation-state is finished.'" [p. 292.]


With internationalism triumphant, from the Wall Street Journal to Z Magazine, will anyone mourn the loss of our national sovereignty, when the time to surrender it comes? Wake up, Americans: It isn't just loony lefties like Chomsky, and the pathetic lisping Barney Frank, who would willingly switch their allegiance to some supranational authority in the brave new world of the internationalist future. When the time comes to sell the heritage of the Founders down the river – in the name of multiculturalism, "human rights," and the "right" of self-determination, of course – the business elites along with the socialist college professors and their student spawn, will do it without regrets and without looking back. United, at last, in a common project, globalists of the left and the right will merge into a mighty coalition – and we can see, in the present "crisis," how and why it is already beginning to take shape.

Check out Justin Raimondo's article, “China and the New Cold War”

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Justin Raimondo is the editorial director of He is also the author of Reclaiming the American Right: The Lost Legacy of the Conservative Movement (with an Introduction by Patrick J. Buchanan), (1993), and Into the Bosnian Quagmire: The Case Against US Intervention in the Balkans (1996). He is an Adjunct Scholar with the Ludwig von Mises Institute, in Auburn, Alabama, a Senior Fellow at the Center for Libertarian Studies, and writes frequently for Chronicles: A Magazine of American Culture. He is the author of An Enemy of the State: The Life of Murray N. Rothbard (forthcoming from Prometheus Books).


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