Tag Archive: foreign-policy: Social Memory Complex

Guess the journal, liberals

Which anti-American, anti-war magazine published an article that frames Obama's foreign policy decisions in the following "blame America" terms?

The sad truth is everything we are seeing we have already seen. Despite presidents who come and go, permanent war is a hallowed American institution. Start if you will with the War of 1812, the invasion of Mexico, and the carnage of a Civil War. Move to the mass murder of Native Americans and theft of their property, the killing, torture, and prison camps in the Philippines, then the blood-drenched 20th century. The 21st likewise dawns red. It never changes. Doves protest, hawks rule, ordinary people pay the penalty. All wars are "just."

Hint: it's also the same magazine Time called "the most anti-Bush magazine of the [past] decade."

Here's the answer. The biggest element missing from the anti-war movement is the anti-war part. Instead, you get a coalition of exotic interest groups around culture war and identity politics. Wake up - that's a language neocons speak easily (as long as the criticism can be focused beyond our borders; see the women's rights arguments for the Iraq invasion).

But as the article goes on to explain, there's a rich history of antiwar conservatism (see Bill Kauffman on this topic) rooted in American traditions and sensibilities. And it took a monumental upset in the conservative movement to override the prejudices and side projects of the modern, liberal, supposedly anti-war characters in this country. Shameful.

Written on Monday, March 15, 2010
Tags: liberalism, conservatism, foreign-policy, obama, bush