Who are these neo-conservatives? Pat Buchanan tells all
March 30, 2003 12:10 PM   Subscribe

Who are these neo-conservatives? Pat Buchanan tells all.
posted by Voyageman (20 comments total)
One of the worst things about slinging the "anti-semetic" moniker around is the work it takes to refute such claims. The ADL is keen on this, and uses it with great tactic. Sometimes with good reason, other times seemingly for selfish intent. Generally, the "anti-semetic" anathema is hurled with little supporting credits, leaving it up to the accused to take time and effort to explain the charges away.

An example: is this post anti-semetic? What would the ADL say?

Disclaimer: This post has nothing to do with Pat Buchanan, and does not reference him in any way, other than this disclaimer, and being associated with the FPP.
posted by four panels at 12:36 PM on March 30, 2003

Please see this thread on Buchanan and Neo-Cons....

This is basically a double post.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 12:46 PM on March 30, 2003

if Buchanan makes more sense then the Prez, it's a sure sign that things are fucked up
posted by delmoi at 1:00 PM on March 30, 2003

Steve: seems like this post is about the same sort of issue, but the link is not in the post you cited. So, how is it a double post?

And, on the same note, calling a post double when it isn't makes it look like you're just trying to derail this thread before it even starts. I'd suggest that complaints like yours should be taken to MeTa....
posted by bshort at 1:01 PM on March 30, 2003

I agree with most of that article. We truly must be living in bizarre times.

Remember it was Blair who pushed Bush to announcing his "blueprint for peace" in Israel, just a few days before the start of the war. In Europe, Israel/Palestine is usually seen as the most pressing issue in the Middle East. It's only America which has this curious blind spot towards Israel.
posted by salmacis at 1:17 PM on March 30, 2003

Don't forget that neocons aren't just the jewish right wing -- they are also made of up evangelical Christians (i.e. Bush Jr. -- but not Bush Senior.) It's a freaky symbiotic religious/political relationship. The Evangelicals need Israel to exist in order to bring about the end of the world - and Israel needs the Evangelicals... for... um... free nukes, I guess.

Buchanan just gets handed the anti-semite label any time he opens his mouth - regardless of it he's talking about neocons or what he watched on tv last night - because he is a ragging anti-semite.

He does make valid points about the Bush Doctrine and the Neocons - but it makes my skin crawl to agree with him.

Sadly though - one can't be against the Israeli government with out being anti-semetic (at least I haven't found a way.)

On the bright side... won't it be great when Iraq is a democracy and we won't have to support Israel anymore? Talk about a tax break!
posted by wfrgms at 1:21 PM on March 30, 2003

sadly, it's an old story: "double loyalty", American Jews serving in the Israeli military etc.

and the "loyalty thing" apparently goes in cycles for America, like it did during the Cold War, and it becomes even more poignant now (who knows what loyalty tests will be required from Arab Americans when/if Al Qaeda strikes again on a 9-11 scale)

of course, Buchanan (with his checkered past when it comes to dealing with the Holocaust and Israel and foreigners) is hardly the best man to raise such issues, but there is a very unpleasant habit by a small minority of Likud supporters, i.e. pulling a Johnnie Cochran-style stunt and scream "anti-Semite" whenever under attack is a very bad habit and pretty dishonest, too

the very heavy US funding of Israel turned it almost into the 51st American State, and that further complicates the issue (not to mention details like the Pollard case)
posted by matteo at 1:22 PM on March 30, 2003

Who are these neo-conservatives?

Here are some of them. Heh.
posted by homunculus at 1:26 PM on March 30, 2003

(rooting for the right to splinter further)
posted by jragon at 1:32 PM on March 30, 2003

For more of the conflict between the neocons and the paleocons, read David Frum's recent piece, along with a response by Sam Francis.

It's unfortunate that the political climate is such that, as wfrgms notes, criticizing the Israeli government or the Bush administration's policy towards that government gets you grouped with Buchanan.

Isn't it ironic when the US, ostensibly the great melting pot, supports increased balkanization both in Europe and in the Middle East? Shouldn't we be supporting coalition governments where both sides, the Israelis and the Palestinians, are forced to work together and share power? Instead, the Bush administration supports independant states for both ethnic groups. It seems to me that approach legitimizes the violence and the endless cycle of bulldozing and suicide attacks.

Prediction: The Kurd controlled region in Iraq, Iran, and Turkey will be the next Palestine.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 1:33 PM on March 30, 2003

Buchanon, when not advocating building a barbed wire fence around the United States, does make some compelling arguments. It´s difficult to refute his idea that the US is more than willing to fight wars that benefit Israel and harm America than vice versa. The question is, why does this make sense? If the US attacked England on behalf of Northern Ireland would we be anti-catholics for complaining? Why do a fistful of neo-conservatives get to decide the fate of the US and a large part of the world anyway?

Why is Pat Buchannon more rational than the president of the US?
posted by sic at 2:08 PM on March 30, 2003

Why do a fistful of neo-conservatives get to decide the fate of the US and a large part of the world anyway?

because right after 9/11, in those terrible hours and days when everybody (WH included) was scared shitless and had no idea at what the next moves could be, the neocons were the only guys around with something resembling a well-thought out Plan to deal with the whole sorry mess (the inept CIA sure didn't).

the neocons had good friends in high places, perfect hawkish Cold War-era credentials, and a Plan (pretty crap plan, we're starting to notice now. but what the hell, at least they had something when that something was badly needed).

sometimes timing (and luck) is everything
posted by matteo at 3:15 PM on March 30, 2003

I am an American and I am a Jew. I am neither anti-American nor an Antisemite,nor even a self-hating Jew, which is what the folks at ADL tend to call people with views like mine. I, for most of my life have thought of myself as a liberal or, more recently, a progressive - but not particularly a Democrat. Pat Buchanan is certainly not someone who I admire, although I have, when I have listened to him, thought that he was at least an honest man.

Now, I find that he has spelled out to a constituency quite different from those who read the sort of commentaries I am in the habit of reading, the same basic story that has frightened me since well before 9/11. The only thing he has omitted is the Armegeddon scenario - but then he is a good Catholic - and probably figures it's not worth getting Christianity mixed up in the argument at this stage - since his case as stated is already pretty damning.

Of course, Perle has now at least been forced to resign his post -- that may be a start. I can only think wishfully - of Eisenhower's intervention with Joe McCarthy and dream that Bush might be able to do the same with his crew. Oh my, if wishes were horses.....
posted by donfactor at 3:43 PM on March 30, 2003

I don't know. I'll accuse the neocons of many things, but of starting this whole strategy for the sake of the state of Israel? Likudniks? I don't think so. I think they're wrong, but I think they're genuinely doing this because they think it'll lead to greater security for American citizens and corporations.
posted by namespan at 4:14 PM on March 30, 2003

Namespan, it's been widely reported they are commonly referred to as Likudniks in Washington, for some reason or other....

Perle hasn't really been forced to resign, he's just moved out of the limelight. Just as Halliburton became too hot to receive all of the fat government contracts. Apparently the chicken hawk neocons don't like to be under the microscope, they prefer to lurk. After all, Perle is known as the "prince of darkness". Oh and Cheney will squeeze the golden goose for all it is worth, he'll just have to use a different front.

Jesus, what a bunch of scumbags.
posted by sic at 5:02 PM on March 30, 2003

As I think about it, I fear that these guys whether or not they are scumbags are serious about their beliefs and they have both money and connections. The only way to stop them, so far as I can see, is to keep publicizing them, but in a way that doesn't' t loop back and discredit the democratic/non-imperialistic point of view. If you read the papers and magazines where articles appear under authoritative bylines you will see quite a few pieces that argue that Iraq must be our substitute for OPEC, that the UN is irrelevant, that Iraq needs to be divided into three countries before we go after Syria, Iran and Saudi Arabia, etc. Those Iraquis coming home from Jordan can be forgiven for thinking that America is an invader rather than a liberator. They can read it in the English language press. What is needed is to discredit these ideas, not just debate them.

That is, unless you believe in an Imperial America
posted by donfactor at 7:55 PM on March 30, 2003

Sadly though - one can't be against the Israeli government with out being anti-semetic (at least I haven't found a way.)

Erp? Sure one can--same way you can dislike Bush without hating Americans, or disagree with the pope without having irrational biases against Catholics. (I realize those aren't exact analogies--just trying to get both politics and religion in there.) I don't mean to be flippant about it, but it seems to me that this is only an issue because some people like to tell those who dislike the Israeli government that they must be anti-semites. You don't have to believe them.
posted by hippugeek at 11:25 PM on March 30, 2003

I think the current Israeli government is short-sighted and repressive. How does that make me anti-Semitic?

I don't think that my thoughts on the current Israeli government's lack of vision and commitment to creating positive solutions come from any idea I have about some inherent "Jewish nature" or any other essentialist perception of Israeli government officials based on ethnic and religious stereotypes.

Rather, my opposition to the current Israeli government is based on the public statements, recent actions, and past records of key elected and appointed officials.
posted by Sidhedevil at 12:04 AM on March 31, 2003

Putting aside the pro or anti this or thatk a very simple fact remains: the war we are now in was just about unanimously voted upon by the entire Congress, and that suggests that to point to this or that group is plain silly. If you oppose the war, then ask how your senators and congressmen voted.
posted by Postroad at 5:18 AM on March 31, 2003

On Buchanan: Even a broken clock is correct twice a day. This is one of those times. Another was when he said that all those old Jewish ladies in Palm Beach could never have been voting for him.

On Israel: It's time they became self-sufficient. Ten billion a year, not including private monies from the US? Total population of Israel is about 7 million. That's a lot of money per capita! Yes, Likudniks and right wing evangelicals do rule the roost currently and both put ideology ahead of common sense.
posted by nofundy at 5:19 AM on March 31, 2003

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