professional politician is a professionally dishonorable man. In
order to get anywhere near high office he has to make so many compromises
and submit to so many humiliations that he becomes indistinguishable
from a streetwalker."
H. L. Mencken
the curiosities of 9/11 was that, despite decades of affirmative action,
the New York Fire Department turned out still to be an Irish Catholic
regiment (with a dash of Italian), charging without flinching as their
priests gave General Absolution, a scene very familiar in British
Army history. The solidarity of that vital unit may very well have
derived from the fact that they were, in a [Steve] Sailerian
sense [a relatively inbred, extended family, i. e., a "race"], a band
Peter Brimelow, on www.vdare.com
great Christian humanist, the Dutchman Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536)
was famous for his hatred of war. In his Education
of a Christian Prince, he wrote that any ruler contemplating
a war should ask himself this:
I, one person, be the cause of so many calamities? Shall I alone
be charged with such an outpouring of human blood; with causing
so many widows; with filling so many homes with lamentations and
mourning; with robbing so many old men of their sons; with impoverishing
so many who do not deserve such a fate; and with utter destruction
of morals, law, and practical religion?
course, VP Cheney, wherever he may be at the moment, is far too
busy to worry about such trivial matters, what with all those military-industrial
interests he has to keep juggling. Secretary of defense von Rumsfeld
also has an overflowing plate. As for that nice, supposedly moderate
fellow, Colin Powell, even his autobiography shows that he long
since signed on to the logic of Total War.
leaves our president, George W. Bush. He seems a hale fellow well
met and even claims to be some sort of Christian. Perhaps someone
will ask him to take a good, this time very serious, look at the
questions posed by Erasmus. But probably not.
Joseph R. Stromberg
on TV I saw a commercial for the Navy: "Life, Liberty, and the pursuit
of anyone who threatens them."
I liked Jefferson’s version better.
Roderick L. Long
mainstream media have long ridiculed any challenge to the official
account of the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing as emanating from the
"fever swamps" of conspiracy theory. But here’s the Wall Street
Journal devoting the entire op-ed section of its September
5, 2002 edition to a piece proposing that there was a
John Doe #2 after all, and he was most likely you guessed
it an Iraqi intelligence agent.
Morrison dutifully reports "eyewitness accounts" collected by an
Oklahoma City TV reporter that identify Tim McVeigh’s accomplice
as Iraqi immigrant Hussain al-Hussaini.
who followed the case knows that McVeigh almost certainly did not
act alone. Doe #2 was probably Michael Brescia, an associate of
McVeigh and of the German operative Andreas Strassmeir, who may
himself have been a U.S. government agent.
Journal shies away from those deplorable "fever swamps,"
yet Morrison’s piece resembles closely the sort of effort we’d expect
an establishment organ to mock to bits. He provides no evidence
linking Saddam Hussein’s man to McVeigh, nor does he consider alternative
hypotheses on the identities of McVeigh’s likely accomplices. We
can only make a wild guess at any conceivable motive Saddam might
have had to blow up the Murrah Building, of all places. There are
all sorts of loose threads and even a reference to the personal
website of a previously unknown "espionage writer."
this is a new standard at the WSJ. If so, I look forward
to future exposés of Saddam Hussein’s role in the Waco massacre
and the crash of TWA Flight 800.
Peter G. Klein
a good name for our coming mission in Iraq: Operation Creating Recruits
for Al Qaeda.
looked over Bill Buckley’s one-thousandth book, the novel Nuremberg:
didn’t get much past page four, though, where Buckley refers to
a character whose "father served as cultural attaché for
Chancellor Hindenburg, in the last days of the Weimar Republic."
pretentious Bill. Writing of "Chancellor Hindenburg" is roughly
equivalent to writing of secretary of state Franklin D. Roosevelt.
Compared to that idiotic gaffe, it’s a minor point that in the Weimar
Republic cultural attachés did not serve any of the many
varying chancellors, but rather the German state.
writing a book of over 350 pages on German politics in the 30s and
40s and not knowing what office was held by Paul von Hindenburg,
the man who appointed Hitler as chancellor.
Bill just goes on and on and on. And why not? After all, he’s "the
conservative icon," isn’t he? But what does that say about today’s
The Passing Scene is edited by Ralph Raico.
© 2002 LewRockwell.com