Krauthammer acknowledges that the “Arab Spring” has led to Islamist rule
Charles Krauthammer, the most overrated individual in American punditry, the man with the guru-like, expressionless face who is treated as a sage at the “conservative” National Review Online and “conservative” Fox News, has tacitly admitted that the “Arab Spring,” which he and his fellow neocons began pushing in January 2011, has empowered “Islamism,” i.e., Islamic rule. I say tacitly, because nowhere in his article does he mention that the Arab Spring he is now calling a disaster was pushed by himself. How many times have I said that when neocons change their position, they never admit it—they never admit that until five minutes ago they were the advocates of the policy they are now condemning?
Thus le sage Krauthammer (my take-off on Voltaire’s respectful description of John Locke as le sage Locke) writes at NRO:
[T]he Arab Spring is a misnomer. This is an Islamist ascendancy, likely to dominate Arab politics for a generation.Then this:
Hence the Arab Spring, serial uprisings that spread east from Tunisia in early 2011. Many Westerners naïvely believed the future belonged to the hip, secular, tweeting kids of Tahrir Square. Alas, this sliver of Westernization was no match for the highly organized, widely supported, politically serious Islamists who effortlessly swept them aside in national elections.He concludes:
The only thing we can be sure of today … is that Arab nationalism is dead and Islamism is its successor. This is what the Arab Spring has wrought. The beginning of wisdom is facing that difficult reality.I would say that the beginning of wisdom is to admit one’s mistakes and change one’s way of thinking. Neither of which Krauthammer has done. He speaks of the “many Westerners [who] naïvely believed the future belonged to the hip, secular, tweeting kids of Tahrir Square,” without pointing out that he was a leading voice among those Westerners. How can such a man maintain a minimal reputation for intellectual honesty, let alone be seen as embarking on the “beginning of wisdom”?
Paul Mulshine at the Newark Star Ledger is also having none of Krauthammer’s second thoughts. He writes:
The same guy who helped cheerlead the Bush team into “liberating” the entire Mideast—and who just a few months ago was urging the Obama team to go into Syria—is now espousing the exact opposite policy.Mulshine continues:
[Krauthammer] claims to decry the dewy-eyed optimism he once embraced:Of course, they got it from Krauthammer and the other neocons.
But the real problem with Chuck can be seen at the end of his column: He’s just not very smart:That’s something that any 12 year old with a normal IQ could understand. But as Mulshine has just shown, Krauthammer still doesn’t get it. He still thinks that “genuine democracy,” i.e., democratic elections producing and maintaining a liberal regime that protects individual rights, is possible in a Muslim state. So despite his admission that the Arab Spring hasn’t worked out, he still subscribes to the underlying illusions that led him to support the Arab Spring.
The man is and remains an ideological idiot. But in our idiot pundocracy, he remains le sage Krauthammer.
I don’t have the transcript of Limbaugh’s remarks. But they are worth listening to. He says some good things, about how the Arab Spring idea was wrong from the start, how it has among other things unleashed persecution of Christians, and how the neocons haven’t taken accountability for their terrible error. But notice at the same time how tentative and even apologetic he sounds in his criticisms of the democracy-spreaders.
Also, at the very moment I was complimenting Limbaugh for the somewhat thoughtful things he said about the mistakes and the lack of accountability of the democracy promoters, I came across another recent remark of his that reminds us that he will never rise permanently above the level of a moronic Republican cheerleader. On the question of Condoleezza Rice as vice presidential candidate, he said yesterday:
I, frankly, don’t care right now. If I may be blunt, I don’t care who the veep is. [emphasis added.] It’s all about Obama to me, folks, and I don’t think it matters. I think we’re gonna be able to get turnout to get rid of this guy no matter what.
And on February 10, 2011, Krauthammer warned that in order to prevent the Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamists from taking power in the newly democratic Egypt, the U.S. must help empower the secular liberals. The obvious fact, never noticed by The Sage, is that under a system of democratic elections, the Islamist-majority country of Egypt will elect Islamists to power, regardless of anything the U.S. does to help the secular liberals.
There is an archive of Krauthammer’s columns at the Washington Post. Anyone who wants to delve further into his support for the “Arab Spring,” especially in the first half of 2011 when Arab Springmania was at its height, need only peruse these links.
You wrote, “How many times have I said that when neocons change their position, they never admit it—they never admit that until five minutes ago they were the advocates of the policy they are now condemning?”
When you got to the end of your second paragraph, I wondered where you were heading with this. When I read your third paragraph, I thought, “Bingo.”JC in Houston writes:
I agree, I think Krauthammer is an overrated neocon mouthpiece. I went to the Wikipedia page about Krauthammer out of curiosity and learned a few things (not that Wikipedia is the most reliable of sources). Krauthammer wrote articles for the New Republic and was a speechwriter for Walter Mondale in 1980, not the best credentials for being a conservative. His conservatism became suspect to me many years ago when he wrote a column opposing some liberal gun control effort. He stated in the column that he agreed that only police and military should possess guns, but that opponents should respect the Constitution and move for repeal of the Second Amendment first. That column has always stayed in my memory. What’s distressing if you read the Wikipedia article is how many fellow pundits laud him as the “most influential conservative in America,” etc. This particular passage from the Wikipedia article also seems to sum up his agenda:
Posted by Lawrence Auster at July 14, 2012 03:17 PM | Send