More from Horowitz against the Libyan intervention and “Responsibility to Protect”

I went over to FrontPage Magazine to see if David Horowitz had continued in his new-found opposition to the Muslim democratization project. The answer is a qualified yes. He has written about it, but very little. At “David’s Blog,” I found just two items posted on the subject in the month since his conversion. Most recently this, dated March 29:

Bill Kristol Drinks the Kool Aid

Here is Bill Kristol’s comment on the speech the President gave last night justifying his aggression in the name of humanitarian values against Libya (yah I know Moammar is a bad guy) but not say Iran or Syria, or for that matter the terrorist enclaves of Gaza and the West Bank which are not even sovereign states:

“The president was unapologetic, freedom-agenda-embracing and didn’t shrink from defending the use of force [which is undoubtedly why he deferred to the kleptocracies of the UN, surrendered command over American troops to a Canadian general and basically washed his hands of responsibility for any mess that may ensue—DH].”

Where to begin? It looks pretty clear at this point that Obama has pushed aside an American ally in Egypt (yah I know he’s a bad guy) and paved the way for the rule of the Muslim Brotherhood, the fountainhead of all terrorism in the Middle East, Iraq and Afghanistan. In Libya Obama is supplying weapons to graduates of Guantanamo and veterans of the holy war against America in Afghanistan. His “freedom-agenda-embracing” stance doesn’t appear to preclude pressing the only democracy in the Middle East’s back to the wall. The Obama Doctrine, “responsibility to protect,” which means a license to invade another country not in self-defense but to enforce some vague “humanitarian” standard is a blank check for imperial intervention anywhere and everywhere. This is the doctrine that muddle-headed progressives who abhor the very existence of nation states may embrace. It is certainly the delusion that led Woodrow Wilson to destabilize Central Europe and set up World War II. But it is not a doctrine that conservatives who understand that rights do not exist without nation states to enforce them (and that there are precious few that are willing to do so, and none in the Middle East besides Israel) should be applauding.

And I found this, dated March 25:

Ominous Signals on Libya: A Response to Andrew Sullivan

Andrew Sullivan takes exception to my observations that we are on a fool’s errand in Libya and a dangerous one. The other day I took issue with neo-conservatives who had learned nothing from failed attempts to create Western-style democracies in Muslim cultures. I had pointed to recent experiences in Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon and Gaza (let alone Turkey) and warned that our military invasion of Libya could lead to the creation of an al-Qaeda aligned totalitarian state. Here is how the Atlantic’s Andrew Sullivan characterized these thoughts:

“It looks as if David Horowitz has left the neocons and become an anti-Islam nationalist; …. he looks at the eruption in the Middle East and wants the dictators back.”

Nice spin Andrew.

First, I am not against people whose religion is Islam. I’m just a pragmatic realist who notes that in fifteen hundred years Islamic cultures have a very poor track record in creating democracies and that the emerging Islamic movements in the Arab Middle East are without exception totalitarian, jihadist and also Jew-hating, women-hating and gay-hating. These realities are apparently not enough to deter Andrew from supporting the exceptionally deceptive aggression, which is being led (sort of) by the dithering amateur in the White House in an audaciously deceptive campaign to put the Libyan rebels in power. As it happens at least one rebel commander already has been identified as a Guantanamo alumni (thank you liberals) and a jihadist veteran of the war in Afghanistan against us. How many more such rebel commanders might there be? Andrew doesn’t know (and neither does his leader) but that does not deter his hair trigger slander of a critic of this misguided war.

Obama’s war has been “authorized” as an effort to establish a “no-fly” zone in Libya to prevent Libyan airstrikes against civilians. But everyone knows this is a lie. The Libyan air force has already been destroyed but the strikes go on because the real agenda is to help the (al-Qaeda?) rebels to win. Despite Obama’s assurance that there would be no American ground troops, there are reports that ground troops are already being sent in. To “protect civilians” does Obama propose to occupy the country and ensure that the rebels do not establish a regime more bloodthirsty than the present one? Is he interested in insuring that a new regime would not be a terrorist state as in Gaza and Lebanon, or would not ally with al-Qaeda, whom Gaddafi at least opposed? Andrew will of course twist this into a claim that I am pro-Gaddafi. For the record I wish that some brave Libyan or secret agent would kill him. What I do not want to see is the American military invading Libya with no idea of what they are doing or why, which is the position into which the present commander-in-chief—“a classic pragmatic realist conservative” in Andrew’s wonderland—has put them.

The doctrine under which Hillary Clinton persuaded Obama to invade a sovereign country and thereby to disregard his Secretary of Defense (an actual pragmatist on Obama’s ship of state) is called “Responsibility to Protect.” It is the invention of NSC adviser Samantha Power and her patron George Soros. Soros describes the doctrine like this:

“If governments abuse the authority entrusted to them and citizens have no opportunity to correct such abuses, outside interference is justified. By specifying that sovereignty is based on the people, the international community can penetrate nation-states’ borders to protect the rights of citizens.”

The right to “penetrate nation-states’ borders.” Now where have we heard this excuse for a big power stomp on a little nation before? Czechoslovakia 1938 perhaps? Wasn’t Hitler, by his own lights, protecting the rights of German-speaking citizens at the time? If Obama really means to protect the rights of Libyans he would have to occupy the country for a decade, rewrite its constitution, re-educate its population and institute a democratic educational system. Is that what Sullivan really wants—or has he just not thought this through?

I’m glad Horowitz is saying this. But it is surpassingly strange—almost Orwellian—to see him saying it, after he spent almost a decade passionately advocating in favor of Bush’s Muslim democratization policy which was fundamentally indistinguishable from Obama’s Muslim democratization policy. Given the way Horowitz feels now, why didn’t he feel that way in the past? Why didn’t he write in, say, 2006 or 2004 or even 2003:

If Bush really means to advance democracy for the Iraqis he would have to occupy the country for a decade, rewrite its constitution, re-educate its population and institute a democratic educational system. Is that what Norman Podhoretz and William Kristol really want—or have they just not thought this through?

Posted by Lawrence Auster at April 21, 2011 09:28 AM | Send

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