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  • 15

    A Tale of Two Normans
    General; Posted on: 2007-10-30 06:36:00 [ Printer friendly / Instant flyer ]
    Podhoretz and Finklestein

    by Paul Gottfried

    Unlike some of my respondents, I am not surprised that Norman Podhoretz in his latest book goes after the isolationist Right. For years Norman has been looking frenetically over his right shoulder, e.g., denouncing Taftites and representatives of the pre-neocon Right, a practice going back to Commentary’s spats with the Buchananites at the end of the Cold War and to its swipes at right-wingers who were perceived as being insufficiently supportive of the Israeli government.

    But even more interesting than the fact that the older generation of neoconservatives have always believed they were in a dogfight with the hated “paleoconservatives” is the way the liberal establishment and the reconstructed conservative movement have kept us out of the public debate. The reviewers of Podhoretz’s most recent book did not want to mention our guys, even if Podhoretz did; just as the antiwar leftist media continue to treat paleo opponents of the Iraqi War as non-existent or beneath contempt. If it were our partisans against theirs, that is, the neocons and their hacks, we might be able to hold our own.

    Unfortunately it is the liberal side that helps to preserve the reputation of the neoconservatives as the only intelligent and relatively humane opposition to the Left. For those who seek more proof, look at the commentary “Saying the Unsayable” by British left-of-center journalist Andrew Stephen in the New Statesman (September 13, 2007). Although this commentary pretends to be about the Walt-Mearsheimer exposé of the American Jewish lobby, it quickly turns into a rant against the “far-right, libertarian congressman” Ron Paul. Supposedly, when Paul noted that the “neoconservatives” played a major role in getting the US to invade Iraq, he was “saying the unsayable,” by “resorting to coded language.”


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