Sam Smith, 2006 – The New Republic, purveyor of cheap paradigms to the Washington elite, has included some of your editor’s comments on the current crisis in its “Idiocy Watch,” described as “our attempt to keep up with all the dumb and outrageous things being said and written about America and the terrorists.”
The words in question – “The World Trade Center disaster is a globalized version of the Columbine High School disaster. When you bully people long enough they are going to strike back,” – were delivered in a speech to a Green Party conference.
For a two sentence summation of a half century of Middle East policy it’s not all that bad. It certainly compares favorably to the deadly and disastrous advice the New Republic has been giving on the subject. Hear, for example, what comforting words NR’s Martin Paretz had to say back in 1982. He advised Israel to deliver Palestine a “lasting military defeat” that would “clarify to the Palestinians in the West Bank that their struggle for an independent state has suffered a setback of many years.” Then “the Palestinians will be turned into just another crushed nation, like the Kurds or the Afghans,” and the Palestinian problem – which “is beginning to be boring” – will be resolved.”
The New Republic staff, rather than describing as “idiots” those urging a rational response, could better use their time apologizing for their part in creating the crisis that America now faces. And while they’re it, they might explain how those crushed Afghans came back to life.