The Hanx Blix of columnists

St. Paul Pioneer Press editorial board member and columnist D.J. Tice has written to draw our attention to the war-day column of New York Times Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Thomas Friedman: “D-Day.” In columns like this one, Friedman seems to have mastered the politician’s art — the art of Bill Clinton — of simultaneously talking out of both sides of his mouth in words that add up to a nullity.
Tice puts it this way: “Friedman is the oracle of the half-hearted left because he is the Hans Blix of commentators. He keeps himself safe by delivering something for everyone in his assessments. In the end this aids only those who are served by public uncertainty — the cowards and the ruthless. But it also flatters the vanity of those who mistake their ambivalence for sophistication.
“Friedman’s final pre-war piece today is a classic of smug gutlessness. He wants to see Saddam ousted. But he’s disgusted with Bush. He’s also ashamed of the French. So where does he stand? Everywhere and nowhere. He’s adamant only that everybody’s a beast or a fool except Tom. Whatever happens, he’ll have been proven right.”


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