by Jeffrey Herf In October 2005 at an "Anti-Zionism" conference in Tehran, Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad famously quoted a remark from Iran's Ayatollah Khomeini, the founder of Iran's Islamic revolution, who said that Israel "must be wiped out from the map of the world." According to Iran's official news agency, Ahmadinejad then said: "And God willing, with the force of God behind it, we shall soon experience a world without the United States and Zionism." As Iran now gives clear evidence of seeking to build a nuclear bomb, the statement has taken on ominous implications.
Last year, Sylvester Stallone was looking for just the right location to film Rambo IV. As he told Entertainment Weekly recently, ''I called Soldier of Fortune magazine and said, 'What is the most critical man-doing-inhumanity-to-man situation right now in the world? Where is it?'" The actor was pointed not to Sudan, North Korea, or the Democratic Republic of the Congo, but to Burma, whose military dictators have committed virtually every human rights violation imaginable.
by Jeffrey HerfIn this age of terror fueled by the ideology of Islamic extremism, some old insights of the liberal historiography of the roots and nature of Nazism remain relevant. In works published in the 1960s and 1970s, two of Nazism's preeminent historians, George Mosse in this country, and Karl Dietrich Bracher, in the Federal Republic of Germany made a similar point about the political significance of ideological fanaticism.
David Sanger's informative piece in yesterday's New York Times (to which I linked yesterday) begins with a tiny mistake. The Bush administration thought that its policy of containing Mahmoud Ahmadinejad would keep him in New York and at the United Nations. But, Sanger asserts correctly, the Iranian president had a different plan, plan B. He did have that, and he exercised his freedom to speak (that he terrorizes citizens of his country into not exercising) at a deflated Council of Foreign Relations session at the Intercontinental Hotel. So far correct.
by Sanford Levinson Is the Republican Party "the party of torture?" A recent book by Ramesh Ponnuru is helpfully titled The Party of Death: The Democrats, the Media, the Courts, and the Disregard for Human Life. To my knowledge, no Republicans have suggested that there is anything over the top about that title.
by Sanford Levinson I wonder if anyone else finds it noteworthy that the ostentatiously self-identified "Dr. Bill Frist" is leading the fight against the McCain-Graham-Warner bill that would prevent the US from engaging in torture or other similar procedures not defined as such by the Administration (but identified as such by most of the rest of the world)? The first injunction of the Hippocratic Oath, after all, is "First, do no harm." Dr.
Captain Ty Wiltz normally oversees the narcotics division of the Plaquemines Parish Sheriff's Office. But, since Katrina hit, he has been leading a search and rescue team deep into the parish bayou, which begins just south of New Orleans and runs nearly 100 miles to the Gulf of Mexico.
by Jacob T. Levy Sometimes a given blog hits its stride in a way that makes it consistently important or even essential reading, but leaves others without much to say beyond, "Hear, hear." Because the blogosphere thrives on controversy or at least nitpicking, "Hear, hear" is kind of boring and not often said--and so sometimes the best posts aren't as linked to or as read as they should be. I'll say it.
by David GreenbergI've taken Casey Blake's advice and read Paul Baumann's review of Damon Linker's book The Theocons. Interestingly, Baumann cited the new book Building Red America by The New Republic's newly hired special correspondent, Tom Edsall (some of whose arguments are here). But Casey and I both heard Edsall speak the other night, when he said that most Democrats who try to invoke God or infuse their rhetoric with a religious sensibility wind up sounding inauthentic.