The McCarthyite left

At Jim Sleeper’s suggestion, I checked out the “history news network” web site where Professor Gilmore’s rather personal anti-war comments appear. As I noted yesterday, her comments are as Little Trunk reported them.
The site itself is not for the faint of heart. It includes such articles as “How South Koreans Can Save Themselves From Bush’s Madness,” “Shiites in Revolt: Why Paul Wolfowitz Is in a State of Shock,” and my favorite, “Nicholas de Genova Explains What He Meant When He Called for a Million Mogadishus.” However, I also found this piece by a history professor named John Moser called “McCarthyism: This time It’s Found a Home on the Left.” Moser explains that “in the context of the current war, the essence of McCarthyism — that is, hatred of the ‘the Establishment’ and espousal of conspiracy theories — is today almost the exclusive domain of certain elements of the antiwar Left. Instead of ‘Red-baiters,’ they might more appropriately be called ‘Red, White, and Blue-baiters’.” Among the McCarthy-style conspiracy theories Moser points to are the claim that American foreign policy is secretly being made by Texas oil companies or, more strikingly, by Israel, and references to the allegedly “stolen” election of 2002. Moser acknowledges that, unlike the McCarthyites, the paranoid left of today generally does not try to silence its opponents by accusing them of treason. They are largely content to hurl about terms like “racist” and “imperialist.” But Moser notes that the accusations of ulterior motives directed at Richard Perle, for example, do have a decidedly McCarthyite feel to them. But I suppose Moser is a “neo-Stalinist” for pointing this out.


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