Monthly Archives: November 2012

Learning from Bill Whittle

Featured image Bill Whittle is a talented teacher. That’s not how he holds himself out, but he has an obvious gift for exposition. In the video below, from David Horowitz’s Restoration Weekend in Palm Beach earlier this month, Whittle offers political advice whose shrewdness I doubt, but not the underlying teaching. Whittle urges Republicans and conservatives to stand up for what we believe in while expressing doubt that Republican politicians “believe our »

America’s first socialist republic

Featured image We provided the platform launching Professor Paul Rahe into the blogosphere. He is one of the country’s most distinguished scholars, but he has also proved to be a natural blogger as well. He now posts regularly at Ricochet. In view of his study of Republics Ancient and Modern, Professor Paul Rahe is the academy’s foremost authority on the history of republics. Although his recent work on “soft despotism” (cited below) »

The pros and cons of the cease fire agreement

Featured image Let’s take a preliminary look at the advantages and disadvantages of the cease fire agreement, from an Israeli and traditional pro-Western perspective. There are two big advantages. First, the agreement puts an end, at least for now, to the bombardment of Israel. I suspect that Hamas was approaching the end of its ability effectively to bombard and, for this reason, was willing to agree to the cease fire. Even so, »

The Next Conservatives?

Featured image Lots of chatter on the blogosphere about David Brooks’s NY Times column yesterday on “The Conservative Future,” in which he singles out for special recognition several younger writers and thinkers on the right such as Ramesh Ponnuru, Reihan Salam, Jim Manzi, Megan McArdle, and Yuval Levin, among others.  Brooks also gives a partial typology of the various camps on the Right, starting with the “Paleoconservatives” who could be said to »

What oft was thought

Featured image The folks at Investor’s Business Daily opine on Obama’s “rubelike gaffes” in the course of the presidential tour of Burma, Thailand and Cambodia. Analyze this. IBD catches Obama receiving the kind of contempt that he himself usually specializes in dishing out to his presumed inferiors: On his trip to Cambodia, a country he claimed didn’t deserve a visit due to its strongman government, first lady Bun Rany greeted Obama with »

The Gaza disengagement in hindsight

Featured image Bret Stephens, one of my favorite commentators, acknowledges that he was wrong to support Israel’s disengagement from Gaza in 2005. Max Boot stops just short of such an admission. Thus prompted, I decided to check out what I wrote about disengagement from Gaza at the time. Here is what I said: Natanyahu [who had just resigned from the government in protest of leaving Gaza] is correct on the merits of »

Come home, Hillary

Featured image The bombing of the bus in Tel Aviv confirms the folly of attempting to negotiate a cease fire with Hamas at this time. If Israel wants to end attacks by Hamas for an extended period, it needs to defeat Hamas militarily. If Israel wants to show that the “Arab Spring” has not altered the Middle East to Israel’s detriment, it needs to defeat Hamas militarily. If Israel wants to maximize »

We interrupt this protest

Featured image Our friend Aussie Dave has posted the video below of Arab students protesting against Israel at Jerusalem’s Hebrew University yesterday. Their protest was interrupted by an air raid siren that caused the crowd to scatter. Dave comments that they “learned that Palestinian rockets don’t discriminate.” There is much that can be learned from this highly instructive video. Israel is a free country. Its Arab citizens are freer than Arabs in »

Murderers, media, mouthpiece

Featured image The Times of Israel reports along with other media outlets that a bus was blown up in central Tel Aviv and 21 were injured today. The Daily Mail story is vague on the responsibility for the attack. The Twitter feed of BBC Middle East Bureau Chief Paul Danahar, who is stationed in Gaza City, leaves no doubt that Hamas claims responsibility for the attack. Danahar seems to suggest that Israel »

That didn’t take long — Obama reverses himself on Israel

Featured image We gave Obama credit for his initial reaction to the conflict between Israel and Hamas, namely that Israel “has the right to defend itself” against attack and that the Israelis will make their own decisions about their “military tactics and operations.” We recognized, however, that Obama would likely back away from this line if the conflict dragged on for an extended period of time. As it turned out, Obama reversed »

Don’t Look Now, But . . . Is Economic Growth Over?

Featured image While everyone has his gaze fixed on the “fiscal cliff,” Paul drew our attention this morning to the fact that France is already mid-air after leaping of their version of the fiscal cliff.  And that’s only the beginning.  The can of European fiscal woes has been kicked so hard and so far down the road that they’re having to borrow new cans to kick from central bank recycling bins.  How »

Inhumanity In Gaza

Featured image If you took the world’s liberal media seriously, you might think that Hamas is a group of human rights activists whose worst sin is protesting against Israel’s “occupation.” Occupation of what? Not Gaza, obviously. But the truth is that Hamas is a brutal, inhuman terrorist organization–worse, a brutal, inhuman terrorist organization that is supported by many, perhaps most, inhabitants of Gaza. To see how subhuman Hamas is, watch this video. »

CBS News claims that Office of the DNI removed references to al Qaeda and terrorism

Featured image Citing “an intelligence source,” CBS News reports that the “Office of the Director of National Intelligence (DNI)” cut references to “al Qaeda” and “terrorism” from the unclassified talking points given to Ambassador Susan Rice on the Benghazi consulate attack, and did so with the agreement of the CIA and FBI. Neither the State Department nor the White House made these changes, according to CBS. But the DNI himself, James Clapper, »

France loses top credit rating

Featured image There has been plenty of speculation that France may become Europe’s next economic basket case. The Economist, for example, last week declared France a “time bomb at the heart of Europe.” The French government responded by calling the Economist’s crtique “sensationalist journalism” and claiming that it lacked “even-handedness.” However, Moody, presumably an even-handed, non-sensationalist outfit, has just downgraded France’s credit rating. It lowered the rating one notch, from Aaa to »

Israelis support air attacks but do not favor an invasion

Featured image The Israeli public overwhelmingly backs its government’s decision to launch operation Pillar of Defense in response to Hamas’ rocket attacks against southern Israel. A poll taken for the Israeli Center for Political Training found that 85 percent of Israelis believe embarking on the operation was the correct decision. Israelis divide, however, on the question of what should happen next. According to the same poll, 45 percent favor continuing the air »

Cold War history for left-wing dummies

Featured image I think that just about everything President Obama “knows” about American history comes from left-wing academics like American University professor Peter Kuznick, the co-author with Oliver Stone of The Untold History of the United States. The book is a companion to Stone’s Showtime series. At American University, incidentally, Kuznick teaches the “path-breaking course Oliver Stone’s America.” On Showtime, Stone presents Peter Kuznick’s America. They have got a circle of love »

Decision time for Israel

Featured image Israel apparently has succeeded in significantly degrading Hamas’ rocket capacity. Hamas continues to launch rockets into southern Israel, but for the first time in several days it launched none of the longer range missiles that can reach Jerusalem or Tel Aviv. Israel’s priority has been to take out these missiles and it seems to be succeeding. Unfortunately, Hamas is thought to retain thousands of missiles capable of reaching southern Israel. »