The "League Of Democracies": Conservatism In Disguise
April 25, 2008
Earlier this week, I described John McCain's "League of Democracies" as an attempt to create a world order based on moral clarity--to sideline the UN and divide the world into "good" and "bad" states, much as President Bush's coalition of the willing did. It seemed McCain was simply dressing those fundamentals up in banal Cold War rhetoric about alliances and internationalism. Now, here's Charles Krauthammer on the proposal: "What I like about it, it's got a hidden agenda," Krauthammer said March 27 on Fox News.
Quick Thoughts On Promising To Nuke Iran*
April 16, 2008
A couple thoughts on the debate question about extending U.S. security guarantees to Israel in light of Iran's nuclear development: 1) Since when did George Stephanopolous start taking cues from Charles Krauthammer? (Cf. the link and comment thread for an interesting discussion of Krauthammer's position on deterrence and Israel.) 2) It's not clear whether Hillary's answer--that Iran needs to understand "an attack on Israel will incur massive retaliation"--is a Clintonian parse.
So Iran Is Deterrable After All?
April 11, 2008
Joe Klein makes some good points in response to Charles Krauthammer's column today, which argues that the U.S. should explicitly commit itself to a full retaliatory response upon Iran in the event that Iran decides launch a nuclear attack against Israel. What surprised me about Krauthammer's column, though, is the apparent concession that Iran can probably be deterred from nuking Israel in the first place: How to create deterrence? The way John Kennedy did during the Cuban missile crisis.
The Fifth Columnist
January 24, 2008
This fall, New York Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. launched a search for a new conservative columnist. It had been nearly three years since William Safire had retired from his weekly column in 2005, and Sulzberger’s initial replacement, libertarian John Tierney, lasted just 20 months before abandoning his column.
Meow, Round 68,482,913
November 20, 2007
It turns out that getting hip to op-ed squabbles in which the combatants don't dare speak each others' names makes reading the morning paper a lot more fun. Now we have Anne Applebaum going at it with Charles Krauthammer in the Post. This weekend, Krauthammer trumpeted that the state of our international alliances is, in fact, strong: When the Democratic presidential candidates pause from beating Hillary with a stick, they join in unison to pronounce the Democratic pieties, chief among which is that George Bush has left our alliances in ruins. ...
April 24, 2007
No, not the one who's back under investigation.
Do As I Say...
April 20, 2007
"What can be said about the Virginia Tech massacre?" writes Charles Krauthammer in the Post today. "Very little. What should be said? Even less." But there are, of course, column inches to be filled. Krauhammer bemoans the fact that "in today's supercharged political atmosphere, there is the inevitable rush to get ideological mileage out of the carnage"; he then, inevitably, rushes to get ideological mileage out of the carnage. His first target is gun-control advocates who've leapt on the tragedy.
April 13, 2007
Anyone who's worked in journalism for any period of time has faced situations where an article he's working on is superseded by events prior to publication (say, Mark Warner announces he's not running for president just as a writer is putting the finishing touches on a big piece about his candidacy). So, I'm willing to give Charles Krauthammer the benefit of the doubt and assume that today's op-ed, "The Surge: First Fruits," was largely written before yesterday's bomb attacks on the parliament building and Sarafiya bridge.
March 30, 2007
Charles Krauthammer bashes Democrats who call Afghanistan the site of "the real war" on terror. I'm sure it's true that Democrats prefer talking about Afghanistan to Iraq because it's an easier moral case. But Krauthammer's argument is built around an awfully glib view of Afghanistan's strategic value. Thought experiment: Bring in a completely neutral observer -- a Martian -- and point out to him that the United States is involved in two hot wars against radical Islamic insurgents.
Lowering The Standard
March 23, 2007
Charles Krauthammer's op-ed in today's Post offers a remarkable glimpse into the evolution of conservatives' moral philosophy on the U.S. attorney firings. He begins by recommending Alberto Gonzales's ouster--not because there has been a scandal, mind you, but because he has allowed the appearance of one where there is "none." ("How could he allow his aides to go to Capitol Hill unprepared and misinformed and therefore give inaccurate and misleading testimony? [my itals]" he asks, employing every euphemism for "lie" he can get his fingers on.) Why was there no scandal? Because "U.S.