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September 17, 2004

Justin Raimondo: Neo-paleocon

Another political post here. I'll get around to that Fukuyama article one day.

In my previous post about Chechnya, I showed how the neoconservatives reject criticism from what I call the "Blame America [or Israel] First" lobby. Namely, the criticism that terrorist attacks conducted on America or Israel are the result of numerous grievances, primarily the following:

1. US support for oppressive governments in the Middle East
2. US support for Israel in the Arab-Israeli wars and Israeli-Palestinian conflict

Thus, the neocons are staunchly pro-American and pro-Israeli, and believe (correctly) that the [Islamist] terrorists are out to rebuild the caliphate, destroy America, Israel, and the West, and to impose Islam upon most, if not all, of the world.

However, on the issue of Russia, the neocons are the exact opposite. They are strongly pro-Chechen, and regularly reject, or attempt to de-emphasize, the fact that Chechnya is now a jihadist haven. They blame Russian policies for the terrorism in a manner similar to the way the "Blame America First" lobby blames America. In this case, the neocons are the "Blame Russia First" lobby.

An interesting reversal has taken place on the anti-war right, it appears. Justin Raimondo, the editor of Antiwar.com, has emerged as a staunch defender of Russia.

Raimondo has written numerous articles blaming the policies of the US towards the Middle East, in particular its support for Israel. He believes that the [Islamist] terrorists have legitimate grievances against America, and is generally in agreement with the "Blame America First" lobby. His site even regularly links to far-left sites who share similar opinions regarding terrorism and US policies.

In comes Russia. In his latest article, "Putin, the Patriot," states

It's no joke to the Russians, who are reeling under the impact of the worst terrorist attack since 9/11. . . The Beslan massacre was almost certainly carried out by Chechen and Ingushetian bandits led by Shamil Basaev, who call themselves "separatists" but don't seem to have any real political program other than a nihilistic devotion to violence for its own sake. . . Whomever is subsidizing these terrorists has one goal in mind: the destabilization of the Putin regime and the further atomization of the former Soviet Union.

Replace "Chechen" and "Ingushetian" with "Afghani" and "Arab," "Shamil Basaev" with "Osama bin Laden," "Putin" with "Bush," and "Soviet Union" with "United States," and Raimondo begins to sound like a neocon. What a reversal!

Ladies and gentlemen, I introduce you to Justin Raimondo, a new species of political analyst: the neo-paleocon, a paleoconservative who takes the exact opposite approach to international relations that the neoconservatives do.

Interesting times we live in.

Update:

More of Raimondo taking the exact opposite position of the neocons. Neocons claim that Tiananmen Square was a pro-democratic demonstration that was repressed by a tyrannical "communist" regime. Raimondo claims that it was the beginning of a Maoist counterrevolution against the pro-capitalist reforms made by the regime, and that repressing it was a necessity.

Posted by Arcane at 05:06 PM