Patrick J. Buchanan

Each Traditional-Nationalist Movement Has Common Cause

Demonstrators waving with flags at demonstration of the Austrian Identitarian Movement in Vienna, 2016. Credit: By Johanna Poetsch /Shutterstock

Asked to name the defining attributes of the America we wish to become, many liberals would answer that we must realize our manifest destiny since 1776, by becoming more equal, more diverse and more democratic—and the model for mankind’s future.

Equality, diversity, democracy—this is the holy trinity of the post-Christian secular state at whose altars Liberal Man worships.

But the congregation worshiping these gods is shrinking. And even Europe seems to be rejecting what America has on offer.

In a retreat from diversity, Catalonia just voted to separate from Spain. The Basque and Galician peoples of Spain are following the Catalan secession crisis with great interest.

The right-wing People’s Party and far-right Freedom Party just swept 60 percent of Austria’s vote, delivering the nation to 31-year-old Sebastian Kurz, whose anti-immigrant platform was plagiarized from the Freedom Party. Summarized it is: Austria for the Austrians!

Lombardy, whose capital is Milan, and Veneto will vote Sunday for greater autonomy from Rome.

South Tyrol (Alto Adige), severed from Austria and ceded to Italy at Versailles, written off by Hitler to appease Mussolini after his Anschluss, is astir anew with secessionism. Even the Sicilians are talking of separation.

By Sunday, the Czech Republic may have a new leader, billionaire Andrej Babis. Writes the Washington Post, Babis “makes a sport of attacking the European Union and says NATO’s mission is outdated.”

Platform Promise: Keep the Muslim masses out of the motherland.

To ethnonationalists, their countrymen are not equal to all others, but superior in rights. Many may nod at Thomas Jefferson’s line that “All men are created equal,” but they no more practice that in their own nations than did Jefferson in his.

On Oct. 7, scores of thousands of Poles lined up along the country’s entire 2,000-mile border—to pray the rosary.

It was the centennial of the Virgin Mary’s last apparition at Fatima in Portugal in 1917, and the day in 1571 the Holy League sank the Muslim fleet at Lepanto to save Europe. G. K. Chesterton’s poem, “Lepanto,” was once required reading in Catholic schools.

Each of these traditionalist-nationalist movements is unique, but all have a common cause. In the hearts of Europe’s indigenous peoples is embedded an ancient fear: loss of the homeland to Islamic invaders.

Europe is rejecting, resisting, recoiling from “diversity,” the multiracial, multicultural, multiethnic and multilingual future that, say U.S. elites, is America’s preordained mission to bring about for all mankind.

Indeed, increasingly, the indigenous peoples of Europe seem to view as the death of their nations and continent, what U.S. liberal elites see as the Brave New World to come.

To traditionalist Europeans, our heaven looks like their hell.

Thus Poles fall on their knees to pray to the Virgin Mary to spare them from threats of an Islamic future, as their ancestors prayed at the time of Lepanto, and of Vienna in 1683, when the Polish King John Sobieski marched to halt the last Muslim drive into the heart of Europe.

European peoples and parties are today using democratic means to achieve “illiberal” ends. And it is hard to see what halts the drift away from liberal democracy toward the restrictive right. For in virtually every nation, there is a major party in opposition, or a party in power, that holds deeply nationalist views.

European elites may denounce these new parties as “illiberal” or fascist, but it is becoming apparent that it may be liberalism itself that belongs to yesterday. For more and more Europeans see the invasion of the continent along the routes whence the invaders came centuries ago, not as a manageable problem but an existential crisis.

To many Europeans, it portends an irreversible alteration in the character of the countries their grandchildren will inherit, and possibly an end to their civilization. And they are not going to be deterred from voting their fears by being called names that long ago lost their toxicity from overuse.

And as Europeans decline to celebrate the racial, ethnic, creedal and cultural diversity extolled by American elites, they also seem to reject the idea that foreigners should be treated equally in nations created for their own kind.

Europeans seem to admire more, and model their nations more, along the lines of the less diverse America of the Eisenhower era, than on the America of 2017.

And Europe seems to be moving toward immigration policies more like the McCarran-Walter Act of 1950 than the open borders bill that Sen. Edward Kennedy shepherded through the Senate in 1965.

Kennedy promised that the racial and ethnic composition of the America of the 1960s would not be overturned, and he questioned the morality and motives of any who implied that it would.

So, why is liberalism dying?

Because it is proving to be what James Burnham called it in his 1964 “Suicide of the West” — the ideology of Western suicide.

What we see in Europe today is people who, belatedly recognizing this, have begun to “rage, rage, against dying of the light.”

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, “Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.”

 

20 comments

Is War With Iran Now Inevitable?

With his declaration Friday that the Iran nuclear deal is not in America’s national interest, President Donald Trump may have put us on the road to war with Iran.

Indeed, it is easier to see the collisions that are coming than to see how we get off this road before the shooting starts.

After “de-certifying” the nuclear agreement, signed by all five permanent members of the Security Council, Trump gave Congress 60 days to reimpose the sanctions that it lifted when Tehran signed.

If Congress does not reimpose those sanctions and kill the deal, Trump threatens to kill it himself.

Why? Did Iran violate the terms of the agreement? Almost no one argues that—not the UN nuclear inspectors, not our NATO allies, not even Trump’s national security team.

Iran shipped all of its 20 percent enriched uranium out of the country, shut down most of its centrifuges, and allowed intrusive inspections of all nuclear facilities. Even before the deal, 17 U.S. intelligence agencies said they could find no evidence of an Iranian nuclear bomb program.

Indeed, if Iran wanted a bomb, Iran would have had a bomb.

She remains a non-nuclear-weapons state for a simple reason: Iran’s vital national interests dictate that she remain so.

As the largest Shiite nation with 80 million people, among the most advanced in the Mideast, Iran is predestined to become the preeminent power in the Persian Gulf. But on one condition: She avoid the great war with the United States that Saddam Hussein failed to avoid.

Iran shut down any bomb program it had because it does not want to share Iraq’s fate of being smashed and broken apart into Persians, Azeris, Arabs, Kurds, and Baluch, as Iraq was broken apart by the Americans into Sunni, Shiite, Turkmen, Yazidis, and Kurds.

Tehran does not want war with us. It is the War Party in Washington and its Middle East allies—Bibi Netanyahu and the Saudi royals—who hunger to have the United States come over and smash Iran.

Thus the congressional battle to kill, or not to kill, the Iran nuclear deal shapes up as decisive in the Trump presidency.

Yet even earlier collisions with Iran may be at hand.

In Syria’s east, U.S.-backed and Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces are about to take Raqqa. But as we are annihilating ISIS in its capital, the Syrian army is driving to capture Deir Ezzor, capital of the province that sits astride the road from Baghdad to Damascus.

Its capture by Bashar al-Assad’s army would ensure that the road from Baghdad to Damascus to Hezbollah in Lebanon remains open.

If the U.S. intends to use the SDF to seize the border area, we could find ourselves in a battle with the Syrian army, Shiite militia, the Iranians, and perhaps even the Russians.

In Iraq, the national army is moving on oil-rich Kirkuk province and its capital city. The Kurds captured Kirkuk after the Iraqi army fled from the ISIS invasion. Why is a U.S.-trained Iraqi army moving against a U.S.-trained Kurdish army?

The Kurdistan Regional Government voted last month to secede. This raised alarms in Turkey and Iran, as well as Baghdad. An independent Kurdistan could serve as a magnet to Kurds in both those countries.

Baghdad’s army is moving on Kirkuk to prevent its amputation from Iraq in any civil war of secession by the Kurds.

Where does Iran stand in all of this?

In the war against ISIS, they were de facto allies. For ISIS, like al-Qaeda, is Sunni and hates Shiites as much as it hates Christians. But if the U.S. intends to use the SDF to capture the Iraqi-Syrian border, Syria, Iran, Hezbollah, and Russia could all be aligned against us.

Are we ready for such a clash?

We Americans are coming face to face with some new realities.

The people who are going to decide the future of the Middle East are the people who live there. And among these people, the future will be determined by those most willing to fight, bleed, and die for years and in considerable numbers to realize that future.

We Americans, however, are not going to send another army to occupy another country, as we did Kuwait in 1991, Afghanistan in 2001, and Iraq in 2003.

Assad, his army, and air force, backed by Vladimir Putin’s air power, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps of Iran, and Hezbollah, won the Syrian civil war because they were more willing to fight and die to win it. And, truth be told, all had far larger stakes there than did we.

We do not live there. Few Americans are aware of what is going on there. Even fewer care.

Our erstwhile allies in the Middle East naturally want us to fight their 21st-century wars, as the Brits got us to help fight their 20th-century wars.

But Donald Trump was not elected to do that. Or so some of us thought.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, “Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.”

Reagan Was Mocked and Underestimated, Too

Three decades ago, as communications director in the White House, I set up an interview for Bill Rusher of National Review.

Among his first questions to President Reagan was to ask him to assess the political importance of Barry Goldwater. Said Reagan, “I guess you could call him the John the Baptist of our movement.”

I resisted the temptation to lean in and ask, “Sir, if Barry Goldwater is John the Baptist, who would that make you?” What brings the moment back is Laura Ingraham’s new book: “Billionaire at the Barricades: The Populist Revolution from Reagan to Trump.” Thesis: Donald Trump is a conservative populist and direct descendant and rightful heir to Ronald Reagan.

To never-Trumpers this is pure blasphemy. Yet the similarities are there.

Both men were outsiders, and neither a career politician. Raised Democratic, Reagan had been a Hollywood actor, union leader and voice of GE, before running for governor of California.

Trump is out of Queens, a builder-businessman in a Democratic city whose Republican credentials were suspect at best when he rode down that elevator at Trump Tower. Both took on the Republican establishment of their day, and humiliated it.

Among the signature issues of Trumpian populism is economic nationalism, a new trade policy designed to prosper Americans first.

Reagan preached free trade, but when Harley-Davidson was in danger of going under because of Japanese dumping of big bikes, he slammed a 50 percent tariff on Japanese motorcycles. Though a free trader by philosophy, Reagan was at heart an economic patriot.

He accepted an amnesty written by Congress for 3 million people in the country illegally, but Reagan also warned prophetically that a country that can’t control its borders isn’t really a country any more.

Reagan and Trump both embraced the Eisenhower doctrine of “peace through strength.” And, like Ike, both built up the military.

Both also believed in cutting tax rates to stimulate the economy and balance the federal budget through rising revenues rather than cutting programs like Medicare and Social Security.

Both believed in engaging with the superpower rival of the day — the Soviet Union in Reagan’s day, Russia and China in Trump’s time.

And both were regarded in this capital city with a cosmopolitan condescension bordering on contempt. “An amiable dunce” said a Great Society Democrat of Reagan.

The awesome victories Reagan rolled up, a 44-state landslide in 1980 and a 49-state landslide in 1984, induced some second thoughts among Beltway elites about whether they truly spoke for America. Trump’s sweep of the primaries and startling triumph in the Electoral College caused the same consternation.

However, as the Great Depression, New Deal and World War II represented a continental divide in history between what came before and what came after, so, too, did the end of the Cold War and the Reagan era.

As Ingraham writes, Trumpism is rooted as much in the populist-nationalist campaigns of the 1990s, and post-Cold War issues as economic patriotism, border security, immigration control and “America First,” as it is in the Reaganite issues of the 1980s.

Which bring us to the present, with our billionaire president, indeed, at the barricades.

The differences between Trump in his first year and Reagan in 1981 are stark. Reagan had won a landslide. The attempt on his life in April and the grace with which he conducted himself had earned him a place in the hearts of his countrymen. He not only showed spine in giving the air traffic controllers 48 hours to get back to work, and then discharging them when they defied him, he enacted the largest tax cut in U.S. history with the aid of boll weevil Democrats in the House.

Coming up on one year since his election, Trump is besieged by a hostile press and united Democratic Party. This city hates him. While his executive actions are impressive, his legislative accomplishments are not. His approval ratings have lingered in the mid-30s. He has lost half a dozen senior members of his original White House staff, clashed openly with his own Cabinet and is at war with GOP leaders on the Hill.

Moreover, we seem close to war with North Korea that would be no cakewalk. And the president appears determined to tear up the Obama nuclear deal with Iran that his own national security team believes is in the national interest.

Reagan was, as Trump claimed to be, an anti-interventionist. Reagan had no wish to be a war president. His dream was to rid the world of nuclear weapons. This does not sound like Trump in October 2017.

Steve Bannon may see the 25th Amendment, where a Cabinet majority may depose a president, as the great threat to Trump.

But it is far more likely that a major war would do for the Trump presidency and his place in history what it did for Presidents Wilson, Truman, LBJ and George W. Bush.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, “Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.”

 Tagged , , , . 32 comments

Trump Embraces the Culture War

Donald Trump on the campaign trail in March 2016. Credit:Windover Way Photography

To attend the Indianapolis Colts game where the number of the legendary Peyton Manning was to be retired, Vice President Mike Pence, a former governor of Indiana, flew back from Las Vegas.

With him in the stadium was his wife Karen. In honor of Manning, she wore a No. 18 jersey as “The Star Spangled Banner” began.

The Pences stood, hands over hearts. A dozen San Francisco 49ers took a knee. When the national anthem ended, Pence walked out. His limousine took him back to the airport to fly to LA.

“A stunt! That plane trip cost taxpayers $250,000,” wailed a media that was rarely critical of Michelle Obama’s million-dollar junkets with Sasha and Malia.

The president took credit for Pence’s walkout, tweeting, “I asked @VP Pence to leave stadium if any players kneeled.”

Pence’s statement: “I left today’s Colts game because President Trump and I will not dignify any event that disrespects our soldiers, our Flag, or our National Anthem.”

As Pence had left his press pool in the motorcade, and said he might not be too long, the walkout may not have been entirely spontaneous. But the game had been on Pence’s calendar for weeks.

What does this episode tell us?

In the culture wars, Trump has rejected compromise or capitulation and decided to defend the ground on which his most loyal folks stand.

Example: While The Washington Post was reporting Monday that Austin, Seattle, San Francisco, and Denver had now joined Los Angeles in replacing Columbus Day with Indigenous People’s Day, Trump issued a Columbus Day proclamation of bristling defiance.

“Five hundred and twenty-five years ago, Christopher Columbus completed an ambitious and daring voyage across the Atlantic Ocean to the Americas. … a remarkable and then-unparalleled feat that helped launch the age of exploration and discovery. The permanent arrival of Europeans to the Americas was a transformative event that … changed the course of human history and set the stage for the development of our great Nation.”

Columbus, said Trump, was a “skilled navigator and man of faith, whose courageous feat brought together continents and has inspired countless others to pursue their dreams and convictions — even in the face of extreme doubt and tremendous adversity.”

The Admiral of the Ocean Sea “was a native of the City of Genoa, in present day Italy, and represents the rich history of important Italian American contributions to our great Nation. … Italy is a strong ally and a valued partner,” said Trump.

His proclamation failed to mention indigenous peoples.

How did CNN receive it? Not at all well.

“Trump’s Praise of Columbus Omits Dark History,” ran the CNN headline. Lede sentence: “Never mind the disease and slavery wrought by Christopher Columbus’ voyage — or the fact that he didn’t actually ‘discover’ the New World.”

Trump’s proclamation closed a week in which he rolled back the Obamacare mandate requiring employers and institutions, against their religious beliefs, to provide contraceptives and abortion-inducing pills to employees.

Religious groups cheered. The ACLU fumed. The in-your-face defiance of the dictates of political correctness has solidified Trump’s base behind him.

And Americans are coming to accept our new reality: On the essentials of nationhood — ancestry, morality, faith, culture, history, heroes — we really are no longer one nation and one people.

All weekend, viewers of cable TV were treated to self-righteous wailing from the acolytes of Colin Kaepernick, patron saint of the 49ers, that “taking the knee” to protest racism and racist cops is a most admirable exercise of the First Amendment right to protest.

What Trump’s folks are saying in response is this:

“You may have a First Amendment right to disrespect our flag, or even to burn it, but you have no right to make us listen to you, or respect you, or buy tickets to your games, or watch you on Sunday.”

And with shrinking audiences watching NFL games, declining attendance, and advertisers beginning to bail, the NFL appears belatedly to be getting the message.

Jerry Jones, owner of one of the most valuable franchises in the league, has told players that anyone who does not show respect for the flag during the national anthem does not play that day for the Dallas Cowboys.

“President Trump has a duty to unite us, not divide us” is the mantra of our elites. Yet since the ’60s, it is these elites who have been imposing the social, moral, and cultural revolution the American people never voted for and which has by now divided us irretrievably.

Call them “deplorables” if you will, but Trump does seem to relish going out to defend the views, values, and beliefs of the people who put him where he is. He does not recoil from political conflict.

People who stand by you in a fight are not all that common in politics. When Trump exhibits this quality, he receives in reciprocity the kind of loyalty even his enemies concede he has.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, “Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.”

42 comments

The Dead Soul of Stephen Paddock

Mandalay Bay, scene of mass shooting, October 1, 2017, Las Vegas. Credit: Håkan Dahlström /Creative Commons

What was his motive? Why did he do it?

Why did Stephen Paddock, 64, rent rooms at the Mandalay Bay hotel, sneak in an arsenal of guns, a dozen of them converted to fully automatic, and rain down death on a country music concert?

“We will never know,” writes columnist Eugene Robinson.

“There can be no rational argument for mass murder … nothing can really explain the decision to spray thousands of concert-goers with automatic weapons fire, killing at least 59 and injuring hundreds more.”

But while there can be no justification for mass murder, there is an explanation. And like Edgar Allan Poe’s “Purloined Letter,” it is right there in front of us, in plain sight.

Having chosen to end his life, Paddock resolved to go out in a blaze of publicity. This nobody would leave this life as somebody we would have to remember. He would immortalize himself, as did Lee Harvey Oswald.

Reportedly, Paddock even filmed himself during his massacre.

Ex-Marine sniper Charles Whitman, who murdered his wife and mother, and then climbed up into the Texas University Tower in Austin, 50 years ago, to shoot down 46 people and kill 15, is the prototype.

Whitman’s slaughter ended after 96 minutes when a cop climbed up in that tower and shot him. Yet, half a century on, Whitman remains famous. Many of us can yet recall his name and face.

Like Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold before Columbine, and Dylan Roof before his sickening atrocity at the black church in Charleston, Paddock wanted to live on as one of the great mass murderers in U.S. history. And he has succeeded. We are today paying him in the currency he craved. He is famous, and we have made him so.

Monday, the president spoke at the White House on the “act of pure evil” Paddock perpetrated Sunday night. Network and cable TV anchors and correspondents stampeded to Las Vegas to dig into his background and motivation.

Commentators discoursed on the meaning of it all. Congress is aflame with demands for gun laws against “bump stocks” that turn semiautomatic AR-15s and AK-47s to fully automatic. Paddock’s deeds pushed Puerto Rico and North Korea out of the headlines. By Wednesday, Trump himself was in Vegas. Five days later, police and FBI are still searching for the “motive.”

Whatever caused Paddock to conclude that ending his life was preferable to living it is not the crucial question. Suicides are not uncommon in America. About 3 of every 4 are carried out by white males; 121 are committed daily, with gunshot a common method.

The real question is what turned Paddock into a psychopath without conscience or a moral code that would scream to him that what he was planning was pure evil.

Unlike ISIS terrorists who believe they are soldiers of Islam doing the will of Allah, and will achieve paradise for slaughtering infidels, Stephen Paddock did not believe anything like this.

He coolly and patiently plotted mass murder almost for sport. He rented a hotel suite with windows overlooking a coming country music concert, his fighting fort. He ferried in, over five days, half his home arsenal of 40-some guns, with the semi-automatic assault rifles modified to fire fully automatic. He installed cameras to alert him to when police were about to break in and kill him. Then he smashed the windows on his 32nd floor suite, and began firing for 12 minutes.

Paddock murdered 59 people he did not know and against whom he had no grievance. How did he come to be a man who treated fellow humans as vermin? And does this say something about our civilization?

In “The Brothers Karamazov,” novelist Fyodor Dostoevsky has his character Ivan say, “If God is dead, all things are permissible.”

What Ivan meant is that if God does not exist, the idea of God’s law, of heaven or hell as reward or punishment, is nonsense. And if it is, there is no man-made law that can deter men who have decided to “end it all.”

Consider. Nevada has a death penalty for the mass murder Paddock was preparing to commit. But as he had already decided to end his life after shooting scores of innocent people, no death penalty or any other threatened state punishment could deter him.

Why not carry out his atrocity and end his life knowing that, within days, all of America would know who Stephen Paddock was?

In Shakespeare, Hamlet declares, “Conscience doth make cowards of us all.” And so, fearing damnation, Hamlet recoils from ending his life or exacting revenge on the king he believes seduced his mother into complicity in the murder of his father.

In Stephen Paddock, the conscience was dead. He was a dead soul, a moral nihilist, a post-Christian man in a post-Christian age, a monster.

Yet, we are going to see more such men, for we no longer have a convincing answer to that oldest of questions, “Why not?”

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, “Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.”

 Tagged , , . 56 comments

United In Tragedy—But For How Long?

“An act of pure evil,” said President Trump of the atrocity in Las Vegas, invoking our ancient faith: “Scripture teaches us the Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”

“Our unity cannot be shattered by evil. Our bonds cannot be broken by violence,” Trump went on in his most presidential moment, “and though we feel such great anger at the senseless murder of our fellow citizens, it is love that defines us today and always will. Forever.”

Uplifting words. But are they true?

Or will this massacre be like the Sandy Hook Elementary School slaughter of 20 children in Newtown, Connecticut, or Charleston massacre of black churchgoers by Dylan Roof—uniting us briefly in “sadness, shock and grief” only to divide us again and, more deeply, in our endless war over guns.

“In memory of the fallen, I have directed that our great flag be flown at half-staff,” said the president. As he spoke, the mind went back to yesterday afternoon where the NFL was roiled anew by athletes earning seven-figure salaries “taking a knee” in disrespect of that flag.

Also on Sunday, cable TV was given over to charges that Trump, attending a golf tournament in New Jersey, cared nothing about the suffering of “people of color” in Puerto Rico.

And we just closed out a summer where monuments honoring the explorers and missionaries who discovered the New World and the men who made the America we have been blessed to inherit have, along with those of Confederate soldiers, been desecrated and dragged down.

Only the 1960s, with Vietnam and the great cultural revolution, and the War Between the States from 1861-1865, rival this as a time of national disunity and civil discord.

To understand what is happening to us, we should look to Europe, where the disintegration appears more advanced.

Sunday, 4,000 national police, sent by Madrid, used violence to break up a referendum called by the regional government of Catalonia on secession. Nine in 10 of those able to cast a ballot voted to secede from Spain.

Televised pictures from Barcelona of police clubbing and dragging voters away from the polls, injuring hundreds, may make this a Selma moment in the history of Europe.

This is the first of the specters haunting Europe: the desire of ethnic minorities like Catalans in Spain and Scots in Britain to break free of the mother country and create new nations, as the Norwegians did in 1905 and the Irish did in 1921.

The second is the desire of growing millions of Europeans to overthrow the transnational regime that has been raised above them, the EU.

The English succeeded with Brexit in 2016. Today, almost every country in Europe has an anti-EU party like the National Front in France, which won 35 percent of the presidential vote in 2017.

Beyond the tribal call of ethnic solidarity is a growing resentment in Northern Europe at having to bail out the chronic deficits of the South, and in Southern Europe at the austerity imposed by the North.

The German elections underlined a new threat to European unity. The ruling coalition of Angela Merkel’s CDU and SPD suffered major losses. The Bavarian-based sister party of the CDU, the CSU, was itself shaken.

Angela Merkel as the new “leader of the West” in the time of Trump is an idea that has come and gone. She is a diminished figure.

Some 13 percent of the votes went to Alternative for Germany, a far-right party that, for the first time, will enter the Bundestag. In states of the former East Germany, the AfD ran second or even first.

What produced this right turn in Germany is what produced it in Hungary and Poland: migration from Africa and the Middle East that is creating socially and culturally indigestible enclaves in and around the great cities of Europe.

Europeans, like Trumpians, want their borders secured and closed to the masses of the Third World.

Germans are weary of 70 years of wearing sackcloth and ashes.

Race, tribe, borders, culture, history — issues of identity — are tearing at the seams of the EU and pulling apart nations.

We Americans may celebrate our multiracial, multiethnic, multilingual, multicultural diversity as our greatest attribute. But the acrimony and the divisions among us seem greater than ever before in our lifetimes.

Blacks, Hispanics, feminists, Native Americans, LGBT—all core constituencies of the Democratic Party—seem endlessly aggrieved with their stations in American life.

In the Republican Party, there is now a vast cohort of populist and nationalists who agree with Merle Haggard, “If you’re runnin’ down my country, man, You’re walkin’ on the fightin’ side of me.”

A massacre of Americans like that in Las Vegas may bring us together briefly. But what holds us together when issues of race, religion, ethnicity, culture, history and politics—our cherished diversity itself—appear to be pulling us ever further apart?

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.

 Tagged , , , , . 42 comments

When Judge Roy Moore Comes to Washington

Saint Patrick Catholic Church (Junction City, Ohio)stained glass, Ten CommandmentsBy Nheyob

When elected chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court in 2000, Judge Roy Moore installed in his courthouse a monument with the Ten Commandments that Moses brought down from Mount Sinai carved into it.

Told by a federal court his monument violated the separation of church and state, Moore refused to remove it and was suspended — to become famous as “The Ten Commandments Judge.”

Roy Moore is now the Republican candidate for the Senate from Alabama, having routed Sen. Luther Strange, whom President Trump endorsed and campaigned for.

Moore’s primary win is a fire bell in the night for GOP senators in 2018. And should he defeat his Democratic opponent, the judge will be coming to Capitol Hill, gunning for Mitch McConnell.

Yet it is the moral convictions of the candidate that make this an interesting race for all Americans. For Moore is a social conservative of a species that is almost extinct in Washington.

He believes that man-made law must conform to the “Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God,” as written in Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence.

If a law contradicts God’s law, it is invalid, nonbinding. In some cases, civil disobedience, deliberate violation of such a law, may be the moral duty of a Christian.

Moore believes God’s Law is even above the Constitution, at least as interpreted by recent Supreme Courts.

Homosexuality, an abomination in the Old Testament, Moore sees as “an inherent evil.” When the high court, in Obergefell v. Hodges, discovered a constitutional right to same-sex marriage, Moore, back on the Alabama court, defied the decision, was suspended again, and resigned.

Postmodern America may see the judge as a refugee from the Neolithic period. Yet, his convictions, and how he has stood by them, are going to attract folks beyond Alabama. And the judge’s views on God, man and law are not without a distinguished paternity.

In his “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” Dr. King wrote: “(T)here are two types of laws: there are just laws, and there are unjust laws. I would agree with St. Augustine that ‘An unjust law is no law at all.’…

“A just law is a man-made code that squares with the moral law, or the law of God. An unjust law is a code that is out of harmony with the moral law. To put it in the terms of St. Thomas Aquinas, an unjust law is a human law that is not rooted in eternal and natural law.”

In his Declaration, Jefferson wrote that all men are endowed by their “Creator” with inalienable rights, and among these is the right to life.

Many Christians believe that what the Supreme Court did in Roe v. Wade — declare an unborn child’s right to life contingent upon whether its mother wishes to end it — violates God’s law, “Thou shalt not kill.

Throughout our history, people acting upon such beliefs have defied laws, and are today celebrated for it.

Abolitionists, in violation of laws they believed immoral, set up the Underground Railroad to help slaves escape to freedom. King believed that laws imposing racial segregation violated the American “creed” that “all men are created equal” and acted on that belief.

Thomas More is considered by Catholics to be a saint and moral hero for defying Henry VIII’s demand, among others, that he endorse a lie, that the king’s marriage to Anne Boleyn was not adultery.

Early Christians accepted martyrdom rather than obey laws of the Caesars and burn incense to the gods of Rome.

After Hitler took power in 1933, he authorized the eradication of “useless eaters” in the Third Reich. Those who condemned these laws as violations of God’s law, and even attempted to assassinate Hitler in 1944, are today regarded as moral heroes.

Moore, should he win, is going to become an object of fascination in The Secular City. Yet his questions and concerns are those of the silent millions on the losing side of America’s culture war.

Is the USA still a good and Godly country when 55 million abortions have been performed with the sanction of law in 45 years?

Do court decisions that force Christians to act against their religious beliefs have to be obeyed? What is the duty of Christians in a paganized and perverted society?

What is taking place today is a growing alienation of one-half of the country from the other, a growing belief of millions of Americans that our society has become morally sick.

Christianity and the moral truths it has taught for 2,000 years have been deposed from the pre-eminent position they held until after World War II, and are now rejected as a source of law. They have been replaced by the tenets of a secular humanism that is the prevailing orthodoxy of our new cultural, social and intellectual elites.

If elected, Judge Moore, one imagines, will not be rendering respectfully unto the new Caesar.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, “Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.”

 Tagged , , , , , . 54 comments

NFL Conflict Mirrors the Country’s Divide

NFL game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Arizona Cardinals in Nov. 2007. (Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Jeff Storman)

“America refuses to address the pervasive evil of white cops killing black men, and I will not stand during a national anthem that honors the flag of such a country!”

That is the message Colin Kaepernick sent by “taking a knee” during the singing of “The Star Spangled Banner” before San Francisco ’49s games in 2016. No NFL owner picked up his contract in 2017. But a few players began to copy Colin and to “take a knee.”

Friday night in Alabama, President Trump raged that any NFL player who disrespects Old Glory is a “son of a b—-h” who ought to be kicked off the field and fired by his team’s owner. And if the owners refuse to do their patriotic duty, the fans should take a walk on the NFL.

And so the stage was set for NFL Sunday.

Two hundred players, almost all black, knelt or sat during the national anthem. The Patriots’ Tom Brady stood in respect for the flag, while locking arms in solidarity with kneeling teammates.

The Pittsburgh Steelers coach kept his team in the locker room. Steeler Alejandro Villanueva, an ex-Army Ranger and combat vet, came out and stood erect and alone on the field.

For NFL players, coaches, commentators, owners and fans, it was an uncomfortable and sad day. And it is not going to get any better. Sundays with the NFL, as a day of family and friends, rest and respite from the name-calling nastiness of American politics, is over.

The culture war has come to the NFL. And Trump will be proven right. Having most players stand respectfully during the national anthem, while locking arms with other players sitting or kneeling in disrespect of the flag, is a practice the NFL cannot sustain.

The mega-millionaire and billionaire owners of NFL franchises are going to have to come down off the fence and take a stand.

The issue is not the First Amendment. It is not whether players have a right to air their views about what cops did to Michael Brown in Ferguson, or Eric Garner in Staten Island, or Freddie Gray in Baltimore. Players have a right to speak, march in protest, or even burn the flag.

The question NFL owners are going to have to answer soon with a definitive “yes” or “no” is this: Do players, before games, have a right, as a form of protest, to dishonor and disrespect the flag of the United States and the republic for which it stands? Or is that intolerable conduct that the NFL will punish?

Trump is taking a beating from owners, players and press for being “divisive.” But he did not start this fight or divide the country over it.

Kaepernick did, and the players who emulated him, and the coaches and owners who refuse to declare whether insulting the flag is now permissible behavior in the NFL.

As Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said Sunday, team owners and Commissioner Roger Goodell have strict rules for NFL games. No NASCAR-type ads on uniforms. Restrictions on end-zone dances. All shirttails tucked in. Certain behavior on the field can call forth 15-yard penalties for unsportsmanlike conduct, or even expulsion from the game.

Our Supreme Court has denied coaches of public high school teams the right to gather players for voluntary prayer before games. Why not an NFL rule requiring players to stand respectfully silent during the national anthem, and, if they refuse, suspend them from play for that day?

Or will the NFL permit indefinite disrespect for the flag of the United States for vastly privileged players whose salaries put them in the top one percent of Americans?

If watching players take a knee on the gridiron before every game, in insult to the flag, is what fans can expect every week, Trump again is right: The NFL fan base will dissipate.

Sunday’s game exposed a clash of loyalties in the hearts of NFL players. Do black players stand in solidarity with Kaepernick? Do white players stand beside black teammates, if that means standing with them as they disrespect the flag under which hundreds of thousands of our soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines have died?

This conflict in loyalties among NFL players mirrors that of our country, as America divides and our society disintegrates over issues of morality, patriotism, race and culture.

We have been here before. At the Mexico City Olympics of 1968, gold and bronze medal-winning sprinters Tommie Smith and John Carlos each raised a black-gloved fist as a sign of solidarity with Black America, and not the nation they were sent to represent.

A month later, America elected Richard Nixon.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.

 

 Tagged , , , . 46 comments

Trump Signals Break From ‘Globaloney’ Transnationalism

If a U.S. president calls an adversary “Rocket Man … on a mission to suicide,” and warns his nation may be “totally destroyed,” other ideas in his speech will tend to get lost.

Which is unfortunate. For buried in Donald Trump’s address is a clarion call to reject transnationalism and to re-embrace a world of sovereign nation-states that cherish their independence and unique identities.

Western man has engaged in this great quarrel since Woodrow Wilson declared America would fight in the Great War, not for any selfish interests, but “to make the world safe for democracy.”

Our imperialist allies, Britain, France, Russia, Japan, regarded this as self-righteous claptrap and proceeded to rip apart Germany, Austria, Hungary and the Ottoman Empire and to feast on their colonies.

After World War II, Jean Monnet, father of the EU, wanted Europe’s nations to yield up their sovereignty and form a federal union like the USA.

Europe’s nations would slowly sink and dissolve in a single polity that would mark a giant leap forward toward world government — Alfred, Lord Tennyson’s “Parliament of man, the Federation of the world.”

Charles De Gaulle lead the resistance, calling for “a Europe of nation-states from the Atlantic to the Urals.”

For 50 years, the Gaullists were in constant retreat. The Germans especially, given their past, seemed desirous of losing their national identity and disappearing inside the new Europe.

Today, the Gaullist vision is ascendant.

“We do not expect diverse countries to share the same cultures, traditions, or even systems of government,” said Trump at the U.N.

“Strong sovereign nations let diverse countries with different values, different cultures, and different dreams not just coexist, but work side by side on the basis of mutual respect. …

“In America, we do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone, but rather to let it shine as an example for everyone to watch.”

Translation: We Americans have created something unique in history. But we do not assert that we should serve as a model for mankind. Among the 190 nations, others have evolved in different ways from diverse cultures, histories, traditions. We may reject their values but we have no God-given right to impose ours upon them.

It is difficult to reconcile Trump’s belief in self-determination with a National Endowment for Democracy whose reason for being is to interfere in the politics of other nations to make them more like us.

Trump’s idea of patriotism has deep roots in America’s past.

After the uprisings of 1848 against the royal houses of Europe failed, Lajos Kossuth came to seek support for the cause of Hungarian democracy. He was wildly welcomed and hailed by Secretary of State Daniel Webster.

But Henry Clay, more true to the principles of Washington’s Farewell Address, admonished Kossuth:

“Far better is it for ourselves, for Hungary, and for the cause of liberty that, adhering to our wise, pacific system, and avoiding the distant wars of Europe, we should keep our lamp burning brightly on the western shore as a light to all nations, than to hazard its utter extinction amid the ruins of fallen or falling republics in Europe.”

Trump’s U.N. address echoed Clay: “In foreign affairs, we are renewing this founding principle of sovereignty. Our government’s first duty is to its people … to serve their needs, to ensure their safety, to preserve their rights, and to defend their values.”

Trump is saying with John Quincy Adams that our mission is not to go “abroad in search of monsters to destroy,” but to “put America first.” He is repudiating the New World Order of Bush I, the democracy crusades of the neocons of the Bush II era, and the globaloney of Obama.

Trump’s rhetoric implies intent; and action is evident from Rex Tillerson’s directive to his department to rewrite its mission statement — and drop the bit about making the world democratic.

The current statement reads: “The Department’s mission is to shape and sustain a peaceful, prosperous, just, and democratic world.”

Tillerson should stand his ground. For America has no divinely mandated mission to democratize mankind. And the hubristic idea that we do has been a cause of all the wars and disasters that have lately befallen the republic.

If we do not cure ourselves of this interventionist addiction, it will end our republic. When did we dethrone our God and divinize democracy?

And are 21st-century American values really universal values?

Should all nations embrace same-sex marriage, abortion on demand, and the separation of church and state if that means, as it has come to mean here, the paganization of public education and the public square?

If freedom of speech and the press here have produced a popular culture that is an open sewer and a politics of vilification and venom, why would we seek to impose this upon other peoples?

For the State Department to declare America’s mission to be to make all nations look more like us might well be regarded as a uniquely American form of moral imperialism.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.

 Tagged , , , . 20 comments

What Truly Imperils a Free Society?

Memorial for shooting victim David McReynolds, 58, in Grant Park, Ga., in July 2012. Credit:/CreativeCommons/Jeff*

“The Barbarian cannot make … he can befog and destroy but … he cannot sustain; and of every Barbarian in the decline or peril of every civilization exactly that has been true.”

Hilaire Belloc’s depiction of the barbarian is recalled to mind as the statues honoring the history and heroes of the Republic and of the West continue to be vandalized and smashed.

A week ago, the statue of missionary and Catholic Saint Fr. Junipero Serra was beheaded at the Santa Barbara Mission he founded. A century-old Columbus statue in Central Park was defaced and spray-painted with: “Hate will not be tolerated.”

Baltimore’s monument to Francis Scott Key, who observed the bombardment of Fort McHenry on a British warship late in the War of 1812 and was inspired to write “The Star-Spangled Banner,” was covered in red paint. “Racist anthem” was written across it.

In Berkeley, home of the Free Speech Movement, the university last week had to spend $600,000 to protect an invited speaker of the college Republicans from being assaulted.

But St. Louis was where the real action was. Friday, a mob hurled rocks and bottles injuring 11 cops, leaving one with a broken jaw. They smashed windows at the mayor’s residence and marched miles to the Central West End to berate diners on patios of restaurants with the menacing chant: “Off the sidewalk. Into the street.”

Saturday, the mob invaded and shut down a suburban mall, and then smashed windows across a nightlife district.

The protesters rationale: rage at a not-guilty verdict in the murder trial of ex-cop Jason Stockley in the death of Anthony Lamar Smith — in 2011.

Stockley’s police van had been struck by Smith’s car, who had been nabbed in an alleged drug deal and led police on an 80-mile-an-hour chase, at the end of which Stockley emptied his gun in Smith.

Yet even Attorney General Eric Holder declined to investigate.

On Sunday, Black Lives Matter showed up at the St. Louis’ police headquarters chanting, “Stop killing us!” But if the killing of black folks is a legitimate grievance, we need to ask: Who is killing them?

Last year, there were 4,300 victims of shootings in Chicago and 762 deaths. How many of those shootings were by cops?

How many of those shootings, mostly of blacks, were acts of “terrorism by White supremacists, White nationalists, neo-Nazis, the Ku Klux Klan,” all of whom our ever-heroic Congress demanded that President Trump, in a joint resolution after Charlottesville, denounce.

Nowhere in the resolution was there any mention of Antifa, the “anti-fascist” fighters on the other side of the Charlottesville brawl, where a protester was run down and killed by a Nazi sympathizer.

What is it in their DNA that causes Republicans reflexively to sign on to a one-sided Democratic denunciation of President Trump for the sin of suggesting there were two parties to the Charlottesville brawl?

And are neo-Nazis really a threat to the republic?

In 1963, this writer was at Dr. King’s March on Washington, which began on the Monument grounds where George Lincoln Rockwell’s Nazis were yelling slurs. On the site where Rockwell’s Nazis stood, there stands today the African-American Museum.

When my father was a 21-year-old Al Smith Democrat in D.C. in the Calvin Coolidge era, scores of thousands of anti-Catholic Klansmen strode up Pennsylvania Avenue, and the national Klan numbered in the millions.

But is the KKK of today a serious threat to civil rights?

Lately, St. Louis and East St. Louis have boasted the highest murder rates in America. Is that the doing of white supremacists?

This morning we read there have been so many smashed and stolen bicycles that Baltimore is canceling its Bike Share program.

Did David Duke and his Klan friends steal all those bikes?

Who are the ones shouting down speakers? Who violently disrupts political rallies, on campuses and off? Who engages in mob violence after almost every police shooting of a black suspect? As for interracial assaults, rapes and murders, according to FBI crime statistics, these are primarily the work of black criminals against white victims.

The Justice Department should report on hate crimes by white racists. But from the stats, anti-white racism is far more common and far more manifest in crimes of violence. Who reports that truth?

Are Christian supremacists murdering Muslims in Europe, or are Muslim supremacists committing acts of terrorism in Europe and conducting genocide against Christians in the Middle East?

The left has been marinated in an ideology where the enemy is always to the right. People blinded by ideology, unable to see the true enemies of their civilization, end up losing it, and their lives as well.

“We sit by and watch the Barbarian,” wrote Belloc, “We tolerate him … We are tickled by his irreverence; his comic inversion of our old certitudes and our fixed creed refreshes us; we laugh. But as we laugh we are watched by large and awful faces from beyond; and on those faces there are no smiles.”

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.

 Tagged , . 14 comments

Trump Loves Cheers, But Will Regret Cozying up to Dems

“Having cut a deal with Democrats for help with the debt ceiling, will Trump seek a deal with Democrats on amnesty for the ‘Dreamers’ in return for funding for border security?”

The answer to that question, raised in my column a week ago, is in. Last night, President Donald Trump cut a deal with “Chuck and Nancy” for amnesty for 800,000 recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program who came here illegally as youngsters, in return for Democratic votes for more money for border security.

According to preening Minority Leader Pelosi, the agreement contains not a dime for Trump’s Wall, and the “Dreamers” are to be put on a long glide “path to U.S. citizenship.”

Trump denies this is amnesty, and says the Wall comes later.

Fallout? Among the most enthusiastic of Trump backers, disbelief, disillusionment and wonderment at where we go from here.

Trump’s debt-ceiling deal cut the legs out from under the GOP budget hawks. But amnesty would pull the rug out from under all the folks at those rallies who cheered Trump’s promise to preserve the country they grew up in from this endless Third World invasion.

For make no mistake. If amnesty is granted for the 800,000, that will be but the first wave. “There are reasons no country has a rule that if you sneak in as a minor you’re a citizen,” writes Mickey Kaus, author of “The End of Equality,” in The Washington Post.

“We’d be inviting the world. … (An amnesty) would have a knock-on effect. Under ‘chain migration’ rules established in 1965 … new citizens can bring in their siblings and adult children, who can bring in their siblings and in-laws until whole villages have moved to the United States.

“(T)oday’s 690,000 dreamers would quickly become millions of newcomers who may well be low-skilled and who would almost certainly include the parents who brought them — the ones who in theory are at fault.”

Trump is risking a breach in the dam. If the populists who provided him with decisive margins in Ohio, Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania feel betrayed, it’s hard to blame them.

Why did Trump do it? Clearly, he relished the cheers he got for the debt ceiling deal and wanted another such victory. And with the rampant accusations of a lack of “compassion” for his cancellation of the temporary Obama administration amnesty, he decided he had had enough heat.

It is not easy to stand up for long to the gale force winds of hostile commentary that blow constantly through this city.

Trump’s capitulation, if that is what turns out to be, calls to mind George H. W. Bush’s decision in 1990 to raise the Reagan tax rates in a deal engineered for him by a White House-Hill coalition, that made a mockery of his “Read my lips! No new taxes!” pledge of 1988.

For agreeing to feed the beast of Big Government, rather than cut its rations as Reagan sought to do, Bush was called a statesman.

By the fall of ’92, the cheering had stopped.

Can Trump not know that those congratulating him for his newfound flexibility will be rejoicing, should Bob Mueller indict his family and his friends, and recommend his impeachment down the road?

What makes pre-emptive amnesty particularly disheartening is that the Trump policy of securing the border and returning illegal immigrants to their home countries appears, from a Census Bureau report this week, to be precisely the prescription America needs.

In 2016, paychecks for U.S. households reached an average of $59,039, up 3.2 percent from 2015, a year when they had surged.

U.S. median household income is now at its highest ever.

Yet there are inequalities. Where the median family income of Asian-Americans is above $81,400, and more than $65,000 for white Americans, the median family income of Hispanic families is $47,675, and that of African-American households far less, $39,490.

Consider. Though black Americans are predominantly native-born, while high percentages of Hispanics and Asians are immigrants, from the Census numbers, Hispanics earn more and Asians enjoy twice the median family income of blacks, which is below where it was in 2000.

Still, black America remains steadfastly loyal to a party that supports the endless importation of workers who compete directly for jobs with them and their families. Writes Kaus, “The median hourly wage (of DACA recipients) is only $15.34, meaning that many are competing with hard-pressed, lower-skilled Americans.”

Looking closer at the Census Bureau figures, Trumpian economic nationalism would appear to have its greatest appeal to the American working class, a huge slice of which is native-born, black and Hispanic.

The elements of that policy?

Secure the border. Halt the invasion of low-wage workers, here legally and illegally, from the Third World. Tighten the labor market to force employers to raise wages in our full-employment economy. Provide tax incentives to companies who site factories in the USA. Impose border taxes on the products of companies who move plants abroad.

Put America and American workers first.

Will any amnesty of undocumented workers do that?

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.

 Tagged , , , , . 29 comments

Tribalism in Europe Marches on—But to What End?

Recently, a columnist-friend, Matt Kenney, sent me a 25-year-old newspaper with his chiding that my column had been given better play.

Both had run in The Orange County Register on June 30, 1991.

“Is there no room for new nations in the New World Order?” was my title, and the column began:

“In turning a stone face toward embattled Slovenia and Croatia, President Bush and Secretary of State James Baker have not only put America’s chips on the wrong horse. They have bet on a losing horse.

“Can the U.S. Government seriously believe that a Yugoslavia of such disparate peoples, all of whom wish greater freedom, most of whose republics wish to be free of Belgrade, is a viable nation?”

The State Department had denounced “these unilateral steps by Croatia and Slovenia” to break free: “As Secretary Baker made clear last Friday, we will neither encourage nor reward secession.”

Croatia and Slovenia are today free and members of NATO.

A month later in 1991, George H. W. Bush, in what Bill Safire dubbed his “Chicken Kiev” speech, warned that Ukraine’s desire to break free of Moscow manifested a “suicidal nationalism.”

Today, Ukraine is independent and the Bush-GOP establishment wants to send weapons to Kiev to fight pro-Russia secessionists.

As nationalism tore apart Yugoslavia and the USSR in the 1990s, and surged to propel British secession from the EU and Donald Trump’s triumph in 2016, that primal force appears on the march again.

Wrote the Wall Street Journal Monday:

“Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban barely mentions his political rivals as he campaigns for a fourth term. Instead, he is targeting the European Union and its biggest members. ‘Our fiercest opponents are not in Hungarian opposition parties,’ Mr. Orban said in a speech last week, ‘They are abroad … Berlin, Brussels.’

“In neighboring Poland,” the Journal goes on, “government rhetoric is even harsher. Politicians have one-upped each other in attacking France and Germany, arguing they are forcing multicultural liberal democracy on more traditional Poles.”

Not only in the east of Europe but also in the west, nationalism is surging. Wrote the New York Times Friday:

“The accelerating battle over Catalonia’s status hit warp speed this week. Catalan lawmakers voted to go ahead with an Oct. 1 referendum on separating from Spain. Spain’s constitutional court declared the vote suspended. And Catalan politicians said they would proceed anyway.”

Yesterday, thousands of Catalans paraded through Barcelona under a banner proclaiming “Goodbye, Spain!” It was the Catalan National Day, which commemorates the 1714 capture of Barcelona by Philip V, the first Bourbon monarch of Spain.

Spain’s wealthiest region, Catalonia believes it is being milked by Madrid for the benefit of regions that contribute far less.

The question being raised by Catalonia is one America has faced before. Do peoples in a democratic republic have a right to declare their independence, secede, and establish a new nation, as the 13 colonies did in 1776 and the Confederate States of America sought to do in 1861?

Though America was born of secession, the U.S. establishment since the Cold War has been far more trans-nationalist and globalist than a great champion of new nations. Perhaps that is because the New World Order proclaimed by Bush I in 1991 envisioned the U.S. as the benevolent global hegemon.

Another ethno-national secession may be declared even before the Catalans go to the polls Oct. 1.

The Kurdistan Regional Government has scheduled a referendum for Sept. 25—on independence from Iraq. Should it go forward, a massive vote to secede seems certain. And Kurds are relying on U.S. support. For they have sustained many casualties and shed much blood backing us in Iraq and Syria against the Islamic State.

Yet while our sentiments may cheer the cause of an independent Kurdistan, our national interests may call for caution.

For though the Kurds, 30 million in number, are probably the largest ethnic group on earth without a nation-state of their own, creating a Kurdish homeland could ignite a Middle East war the Kurds could lose as badly as did the Confederate States.

Why? Because, the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire at the Paris Peace Conference of 1919-1920 not only left millions of Kurds in Iraq, it left most of them in Turkey, Iran and Syria.

A free and independent Kurdistan carved out of Iraq could prove a magnet for the 25 million Kurds in Iran, Turkey and Syria, and a sanctuary for Kurd rebels, causing those nations to join together to annihilate the new country.

Then, there is Kirkuk, seized by the Kurds after the Iraqi army fled from an invading ISIS. The city sits on some of the richest oil deposits in Iraq.

Yesterday, Massoud Barzani, president of Iraqi Kurdistan, told the BBC that if the Kurds vote for independence and Baghdad refuses to accept it, they will forcibly resist any Iraqi attempt to retake the city.

Tribalism appears to be doing to the Bush New World Order what it did to Mikhail Gorbachev’s Soviet Union.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever. 

 

11 comments

Trump Dumps the Do-Nothing Congress

House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (Shutterstock)

Donald Trump is president today because he was seen as a doer not a talker. Among the most common compliments paid him in 2016 was, “At least he gets things done!”

And it was exasperation with a dithering GOP Congress, which had failed to enact his or its own agenda, that caused Trump to pull the job of raising the debt ceiling away from Republican contractors Ryan & McConnell, and give it to Pelosi & Schumer.

Hard to fault Trump. Over seven months, Congress showed itself incapable of repealing Obamacare, though the GOP promised this as its first priority in three successive elections.

Returning to D.C. after five weeks vacation, with zero legislation enacted, Speaker Paul Ryan and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell were facing a deadline to raise the debt ceiling and fund the government.

Failure to do so would crash the markets, imperil the U.S. bond rating, and make America look like a deadbeat republic.

Families and businesses do this annually. Yet, every year, it seems, Congress goes up to the precipice of national default before authorizing the borrowing to pay the bills Congress itself has run up.

To be sure, Trump only kicked this year’s debt crisis to mid-December.

Before year’s end, he and Congress will also have to deal with an immigration crisis brought on by his cancellation of the Obama administration’s amnesty for the “Dreamers” now vulnerable to deportation.

He will have to get Congress to fund his Wall, enact tax reform and finance the repair and renewal of our infrastructure, or have his first year declared a failure.

We are likely looking at a Congressional pileup, pre-Christmas, from which Trump will have to call on Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi, again, to extricate him and his party.

The question that now arises: Has the president concluded that working with the GOP majorities alone cannot get him where he needs to go to make his a successful presidency?

Having cut a deal with Democrats for help with the debt ceiling, will Trump seek a deal with Democrats on amnesty for the “Dreamers,” in return for funding for border security? Trump seemed to be signaling receptivity to the idea this week.

Will he give up on free-trade Republicans to work with Democrats to protect U.S. jobs and businesses from predator traders like China?

Will he cut a deal with Hill Democrats on which infrastructure projects should be funded first? Will he seek out compromise with Democrats on whose taxes should be cut and whose retained?

We could be looking at a seismic shift in national politics, with Trump looking to centrist and bipartisan coalitions to achieve as much of his agenda as he can. He could collaborate with Federalist Society Republicans on justices and with economic-nationalist Democrats on tariffs.

But the Congressional gridlock that exhausted the president’s patience may prove more serious than a passing phase. The Congress of the United States, whose powers were delineated in the late 18th century, may simply not be an institution suited to the 21st.

A century ago, Congress ceded to the Federal Reserve its right “to coin money (and) regulate the value thereof.” It has yielded to the third branch, the Supreme Court, the power to invent new rights, as in Roe v. Wade. Its power to “regulate commerce with foreign nations” has been assumed by an executive branch that negotiates the trade treaties, leaving Congress to say yea or nay.

Congress alone has the power to declare war. But recent wars have been launched by presidents over Congressional objection, some without consultation. We are close to a second major war in Korea, the first of which, begun in 1950, was never declared by the Congress, but declared by Harry Truman to be a “police action.”

In the age of the internet and cable TV, the White House is seen as a locus of decision and action, while Capitol Hill takes months to move. Watching Congress, the word torpor invariably comes to mind, which one Webster’s Dictionary defines as “a state of mental and motor inactivity with partial or total insensibility.”

Result: In a recent survey, 72 percent of Americans expressed high confidence in the military; 12 percent said the same of Congress.

The members of Congress the TV cameras reward with air time are most often mavericks like John McCain, Lindsay Graham and Jeff Flake, who will defy a president the media largely detest.

At the onset of the post-Cold War era, some contended that democracy was the inevitable future of mankind. But autocracy is holding its own. Russia, China, India, Turkey, Egypt come to mind.

If democracy, as Freedom House contends, is in global retreat, one reason may be that, in our new age, legislatures, split into hostile blocs checkmating one another, cannot act with the dispatch impatient peoples now demand of their rulers.

In the days of Henry Clay and Daniel Webster, Congress was a rival to even strong presidents. Those days are long gone.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.

 Tagged , , . 27 comments

Should Japan and South Korea Go Nuclear?

Moon Jae-in, president of South Korea. (Sagase48 / Shutterstock.com)

By setting off a 100-kiloton bomb, after firing a missile over Japan, Kim Jong Un has gotten the world’s attention.

What else does he want?

Almost surely not war with America. For no matter what damage Kim could visit on U.S. troops and bases in South Korea, Okinawa and Guam, his country would be destroyed and the regime his grandfather built annihilated.

“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting,” wrote Sun Tzu. Kim likely has something like this in mind.

His nuclear and missile tests have already called the bluff of George W. Bush who, in his “axis of evil” speech, declared that the world’s worst regimes would not be allowed to acquire the world’s worst weapons.

Arguably the world’s worst regime now has the world’s worst weapon, an H-bomb, with ICBMs to follow.

What else does Kim want? He wants the U.S. to halt joint military maneuvers with the South, recognize his regime, tear up the security pact with Seoul, and get our forces off the peninsula.

No way, says President Trump. Emerging from church, Trump added, “South Korea’s … talk of appeasement with North Korea will not work, they only understand one thing!”

On Monday, South Korea was accelerating the activation of the high-altitude missile defense implanted by the United States. Russia and China were talking of moving missile forces into the area. And Mattis had warned Kim he was toying with the fate of his country:

“Any threat to the United States or its territories, including Guam or our allies, will be met with a massive military response.”

As the United States can only lose from a new Korean war in which thousands of Americans and millions of Koreans could perish, the first imperative is to dispense with the war talk, and to prevent the war Mattis rightly says would be “catastrophic.”

China has declared that it will enter a new Korean conflict on the side of the North, but only if the North does not attack first.

For this and other reasons, the U.S. should let the North strike the first blow, unless we have hard evidence Kim is preparing a pre-emptive nuclear strike.

But if and when we manage to tamp down this crisis, we should ask ourselves why we are in this crisis. Why are we a party to this frozen conflict from 1953 that is 8,000 miles away?

The first Korean War ended months into Ike’s first term. Our security treaty with Seoul was signed in October 1953.

That year, Stalin’s successors had taken over a USSR that was busy testing missiles and hydrogen bombs. China was ruled by Chairman Mao, who had sent a million “volunteers’ to fight in Korea. Japan, still recovering from World War II, was disarmed and entirely dependent upon the United States for its defense.

What has changed in six and a half decades?

That USSR no longer exists. It split, three decades ago, into 15 nations. Japan has risen to boast an economy 100 times as large as North Korea’s. South Korea is among the most advanced nations in Asia with a population twice that of the North and an economy 40 times as large.

Since the KORUS free trade deal took effect under President Obama, Seoul has been running surging trade surpluses in goods at our expense every year.

The world has changed dramatically since the 1950s. But U.S. policy failed to change commensurately.

The basic question that needs addressing:

Why do we still keep 28,000 troops in South Korea as a trip wire to bring us into a second Korean war from its first hours, a war that could bring nuclear strikes on our troops, bases, and, soon, our nation?

We cannot walk away from our Korean allies in this crisis. But we should look upon the North’s drive to marry nuclear warheads to ICBMs as a wake-up call to review a policy rooted in Cold War realities that ceased to exist when Ronald Reagan went home.

Consider: North Korea devotes 25 percent of GDP to defense. South Korea spends 2.6 percent, Japan one percent. Yet these mighty Asian allies, who run annual trade surpluses at our expense, require us to defend them from a maniacal little country right next door.

After this crisis, South Korea and Japan should begin to make the kind of defense effort the U.S. does, and create their own nuclear deterrents. This might get Beijing’s attention, as our pleas for its assistance with North Korea apparently have not.

Already involved in land disputes with a nuclear-armed Russia and India, China’s dominance of Asia—should Japan and South Korea acquire nuclear weapons—begins to diminish.

“As our case is new,” said Abraham Lincoln, “we must think anew and act anew.”

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.

 Tagged , , , . 15 comments

On Display This Week Was America at Her Best

Texas National Guard soldiers conduct rescue operations in flooded areas around Houston, Texas, August, 27, 2017. (Photo by 1Lt. Zachary West, 100th MPAD)

Like 9/11, Hurricane Harvey brought us together.

In awe at the destruction 50 inches of rain did to East Texas and our fourth-largest city and in admiration as cable television showed countless hours of Texans humanely and heroically rescuing and aiding fellow Texans in the worst natural disaster in U.S. history.

On display this week was America at her best.

Yet the destruction will not soon be repaired. Nearly a third of Harris County, home to 4.5 million people, was flooded. Beaumont and Port Arthur were swamped with two feet of rain and put underwater.

Estimates of the initial cost to the Treasury are north of $100 billion, with some saying the down payment alone will be closer to $200 billion. In inflation-adjusted dollars, the cost of Harvey will exceed that of the Marshall Plan, which rebuilt Europe after World War II.

Though the country has appeared united since the storm hit, it is not likely to remain so. Soon, the cameras and correspondents will go home, while the shelters remain full, as tens of thousands of people in those shelters have only destroyed homes to return to.

When the waters recede, the misery of the evacuees left behind will become less tolerable. Then will come the looters and gougers and angry arguments over who’s to blame and who should pay.

They have already begun. Republicans who balked at voting for the bailout billions for Chris Christie’s New Jersey after Hurricane Sandy ravaged the coast in 2012 are being called hypocrites for asking for swift and massive federal assistance to repair red state Texas.

And whereas George W. Bush soared to 90 percent approval after 9/11, no such surge in support for Donald Trump appears at hand.

Indeed, the sneering and sniping began on his first visit to Texas.

He failed to celebrate the first responders, they said. He failed to hug any of the victims. He failed to show empathy. First lady Melania Trump wore spiked heels boarding Marine One for Texas.

A prediction: The damage done by Harvey—as well as the physical, psychic and political costs—will cause many to echo the slogan of George McGovern in 1972, when he exhorted the country to “come home, America.”

The nation seems more receptive now, for even before Harvey, the media seemed consumed with what ails America.

The New York and D.C. subway systems are crumbling. Puerto Rico is bankrupt. Some states, such as Illinois, cannot balance their budgets. The murder rates are soaring in Baltimore and Chicago. Congress this month will have to raise the debt ceiling by hundreds of billions and pass a budget with a deficit bloated by the cost of Harvey.

And the foreign crises seem to be coming at us, one after another.

Russia is beginning military maneuvers in the Baltic and Belarus, bordering Poland, with a force estimated by some at 100,000 troops — Vladimir Putin’s response to NATO’s deployment of 4,000 troops to the Baltic States and Poland.

The U.S. is considering sending anti-tank missiles to Kiev. This could reignite the Donbass war and bring Russian intervention, the defeat of the Ukrainian army and calls for U.S. intervention.

In the teeth of Trump’s threat to pour “fire and fury” on North Korea, Kim Jong Un just launched an intermediate-range ballistic missile over Japan. Trump’s answer: U.S. B-1Bs make practice bombing runs near the demilitarized zone. Reports from South Korea indicate that Kim may soon conduct a sixth underground test of an atomic bomb.

War in Korea has never seemed so close since Dwight Eisenhower ended the Korean War with an armistice more than 60 years ago.

Despite the opposition of his national security team, Trump is said to be ready to repudiate the Iranian nuclear deal in October, freeing Congress to reimpose the sanctions lifted by the deal.

This would split us from our NATO allies and, if Iran ignored the new U.S. sanctions or began anew to enrich uranium, force Trump’s hand. Is he, are we as a country, ready for another trillion-dollar war, with Iran, which so many inside the Beltway seem so eager to fight?

The U.S. and Turkey have urged Iraq’s Kurds to put off their nonbinding referendum on independence Sept. 25. The vote seems certain to endorse a separate state. A Kurdistan, seceded from Baghdad, would be a magnet for secession-minded Kurds in Turkey, Syria and Iran, 30 million in all, and present a strategic crisis for the United States.

Along with the steady growth of entitlement spending, the new dollars demanded for defense, the prospect of new wars and the tax cuts the White House supports, Hurricane Harvey should concentrate the mind.

Great as America is, there are limits to our wealth and power, to how many global problems we can solve, to how many wars we can fight and to how many hostile powers we can confront.

The “indispensable nation” is going to have to begin making choices. Indeed, that is among the reasons Trump was elected.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.

 

8 comments

GOP Coalition Has Gone to Battle Stations—Against Itself

Gage Skidmore / Flickr; Tony Alter / Flickr

Wednesday morning, Nov. 9, 2016, Republicans awoke to learn they had won the lottery. Donald Trump had won the presidency by carrying Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. All three states had gone Democratic in the last six presidential elections.

The GOP had won both houses of Congress. Party control of governorships and state legislatures rivaled the halcyon years of the 1920s.

But not everyone was jubilant. Neocons and Never-Trumpers were appalled, and as morose as they had been since the primaries produced a populist slaughter of what GOP elites had boasted was the finest class of presidential candidates in memory.

And there was this sobering fact: Hillary Clinton had won the popular vote. Her margin would rise to near three million, making this the sixth in seven presidential elections that the GOP lost the popular vote. Trump had cracked the Democrats’ “blue wall,” but a shift of 70,000 votes would have meant a third straight GOP defeat.

Seven months into the Trump presidency, the promise of a new Republican era has receded.It is not because Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer have proven to be such formidable adversaries, but because the GOP coalition has gone to battle stations—against itself.

Trump has taken to disparaging Senate Leader Mitch McConnell for failing to pass health care reform, though the decisive vote to kill the bill came from John McCain, who, for his own motives and to media cheers, torpedoed McConnell’s effort and humiliated his party.

And as Allan Ryskind writes in The Washington Times, McConnell is responsible for Neil Gorsuch being on the Supreme Court. Had Mitch not kept his troops in line to block a Senate vote on President Obama’s election-year nominee, Judge Merrick Garland, there would have been no vacancy for Trump to fill with Gorsuch.

McConnell is also indispensable to the Trump-GOP effort to repopulate federal appellate courts with disciples of Antonin Scalia.

What purpose is served by the coach trashing his quarterback—in midseason?

Undeniably, Congress, which the voters empowered to repeal Obamacare, reduce tax rates and rebuild America’s infrastructure, has thus far failed. And if Congress fails to produce on tax reform, the GOP will have some serious explaining to do in 2018.

As for Trump, while public approval of his performance is at record lows for a president in his first year, he has fulfilled some major commitments and has had some major achievements.

He put Gorsuch on the court. He pulled out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Paris Climate Accord. He persuaded NATO allies to put up more for defense. He approved the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines.

Border security is markedly better. The economic news has been excellent: Record run-ups in the stock market, near full employment, growth approaching the 3 percent he promised. The coal industry has been liberated, and the Trump folks are renegotiating NAFTA.

Yet the divisions over policy and the persona of the president are widening. Trump is disliked and disrespected by many in his own party on Capitol Hill, and much of the Republican media proudly despise him.

And that form of bribery so familiar to D.C. trashing one’s president at the coaxing of the press, in return for plaudits to one’s “courage” and “independence”— is openly practiced.

More critically, there are disputes over policy that again seem irreconcilable.

Free-trade Republicans remain irredeemably hostile to economic nationalism, though countries like China continue to eat our lunch. In July, the U.S. trade deficit in goods was $65 billion, an annual rate of more than $780 billion.

Interventionists continue to push for confrontation with Russia in the Baltic States and Ukraine, for more U.S. troops in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, for scrapping the nuclear deal with Iran.

On social issues, the GOP seems split, with many willing to soft-peddle opposition to same-sex marriage and abortion and wait on a Supreme Court that ignited the culture wars to reverse course with new Trump appointees.

Even Cabinet members and Trump aides have let the media know they sharply dissent from Trump’s stand in the Charlottesville brawl. And the coming clash over statues of Confederate soldiers and statesmen is likely to split Northern and Southern Republicans.

The white working class that provided Trump’s his margins in the Middle West wonders why affirmative action, reverse discrimination at their expense, has not been abolished.

As for Speaker Paul Ryan and others committed to entitlement reform—paring back Social Security and Medicare benefits, while raising the contributions of the well-to-do to ensure the long-term solvency of the programs—they have not been heard from lately.

What seems apparent is that the historic opportunity the party had in January, to forge a coalition of conservatives and populists who might find common ground on immigration, trade, border security, spending, culture and foreign policy, is slipping away.

And the battle for the soul and future of the GOP, thought to have been suspended until 2020, is on once again.

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, “Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.”

22 comments

What Still Unites Us?

Decades ago, a debate over what kind of nation America is roiled the conservative movement.

Neocons claimed America was an “ideological nation” a “creedal nation,” dedicated to the proposition that “all men are created equal.”

Expropriating the biblical mandate, “Go forth and teach all nations!” they divinized democracy and made the conversion of mankind to the democratic faith their mission here on earth.

With his global crusade for democracy, George W. Bush bought into all this. Result: Ashes in our mouths and a series of foreign policy disasters, beginning with Afghanistan and Iraq.

Behind the Trumpian slogan “America First” lay a conviction that, with the Cold War over and the real ideological nation, the USSR, shattered into pieces along ethnic lines, it was time for America to come home.

Contra the neocons, traditionalists argued that, while America was uniquely great, the nation was united by faith, culture, language, history, heroes, holidays, mores, manners, customs and traditions. A common feature of Americans, black and white, was pride in belonging to a people that had achieved so much.

The insight attributed to Alexis de Tocqueville—”America is great because she is good, and if America ceases to be good, she will cease to be great”—was a belief shared by almost all.

What makes our future appear problematic is that what once united us now divides us. While Presidents Wilson and Truman declared us to be a “Christian nation,” Christianity has been purged from our public life and sheds believers every decade. Atheism and agnosticism are growing rapidly, especially among the young.

Traditional morality, grounded in Christianity, is being discarded. Half of all marriages end in divorce. Four-in-10 children are born out of wedlock. Unrestricted abortion and same-sex marriage — once regarded as marks of decadence and decline — are now seen as human rights and the hallmarks of social progress.

Tens of millions of us do not speak English. Where most of our music used to be classic, popular, country and western, and jazz, much of it now contains rutting lyrics that used to be unprintable.

Where we used to have three national networks, we have three 24-hour cable news channels and a thousand websites that reinforce our clashing beliefs on morality, culture, politics and race.

Consider but a few events post-Charlottesville.

“Murderer” was painted on the San Fernando statue of Fr. Junipero Serra, the Franciscan who founded the missions that became San Diego, San Francisco, San Juan Capistrano and Santa Clara.

America’s oldest monument honoring Columbus, in Baltimore, was vandalized. Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia called for Robert E. Lee’s statue to be removed from Capitol and replaced by—Pocahontas.

According to legend, this daughter of Chief Powhatan saved Captain John Smith from being beheaded by throwing herself across his neck. The Chief was a “person of interest” in the disappearance of the “Lost Colony” of Roanoke Island, among whose missing was Virginia Dare, the first European baby born in British America.

Why did Kaine not call for John Smith himself, leader of the Jamestown Colony that fought off Indian attacks, to be so honored?

In New Orleans, “Tear It Down” was spray-painted on a statue of Joan of Arc, a gift from France in 1972. Besides being a canonized saint in the Catholic Church and a legendary heroine of France, what did the Maid of Orleans do to deserve this?

Taken together, we are seeing the discoverers, explorers and missionaries of North America demonized as genocidal racists all. The Founding Fathers are either slave owners or sanctioners of slavery.

Our nation-builders either collaborated in or condoned the ethnic cleansing of Native Americans. Almost to the present, ours was a land where segregationists were honored leaders.

Bottom line for the left: Americans should be sickened and ashamed of the history that made us the world’s greatest nation. And we should acknowledge our ancestors’ guilt by tearing down any and all monuments and statues that memorialize them.

This rising segment of America, full of self-righteous rage, is determined to blacken the memory of those who have gone before us.

To another slice of America, much of the celebrated social and moral “progress” of recent decades induces a sense of nausea, summarized in the lament, “This isn’t the country we grew up in.”

Hillary Clinton famously described this segment of America as a “basket of deplorables… racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic…bigots,” and altogether “irredeemable.”

So, what still unites us? What holds us together into the indefinite future? What makes us one nation and one people? What do we offer mankind, as nations seem to recoil from what we are becoming, and are instead eager to build their futures on the basis of ethnonationalism and fundamentalist faith?

If advanced democracy has produced the disintegration of a nation that we see around us, what is the compelling case for it?

A sixth of the way through the 21st century, what is there to make us believe this will be the Second American Century?

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, “Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.”

 Tagged , . 60 comments

Is Trump’s Agenda Being Eclipsed?

“I have not become the King’s First Minister in order to preside over the liquidation of the British Empire,” said Winston Churchill to cheers at the Lord Mayor’s luncheon in London in November 1942.True to his word, the great man did not begin the liquidation.

When his countrymen threw him out in July 1945, that role fell to Clement Attlee, who began the liquidation. Churchill, during his second premiership from 1951-1955, would continue the process, as would his successor, Harold Macmillan, until the greatest empire the world had ever seen had vanished.

While its demise was inevitable, the death of the empire was hastened and made more humiliating by the wars into which Churchill had helped to plunge Britain, wars that bled and bankrupted his nation.

At Yalta in 1945, Stalin and FDR treated the old imperialist with something approaching bemused contempt.

War is the health of the state, but the death of empires.

The German, Austro-Hungarian, Russian and Ottoman empires all fell in World War I. World War II ended the Japanese and Italian empires — with the British and French following soon after. The Soviet Empire collapsed in 1989. Afghanistan delivered the coup de grace.

Is it now the turn of the Americans?

Persuaded by his generals — Mattis at Defense, McMasters on the National Security Council, Kelly as chief of staff — President Trump is sending some 4,000 more U.S. troops to Afghanistan to augment the 8,500 already there.

Like Presidents Obama and Bush, he does not intend to preside over a U.S. defeat in its longest war. Nor do his generals. Yet how can we defeat the Taliban with 13,000 troops when we failed to do so with the 100,000 Obama sent?

The new troops are to train the Afghan army to take over the war, to continue eradicating the terrorist elements like ISIS, and to prevent Kabul and other cities from falling to a Taliban now dominant in 40 percent of the country.

Yet what did the great general, whom Trump so admires, Douglas MacArthur, say of such a strategy?

“War’s very object is victory, not prolonged indecision.”

Is not “prolonged indecision” what the Trump strategy promises? Is not “prolonged indecision” what the war policies of Obama and Bush produced in the last 17 years?

Understandably, Americans feel they cannot walk away from this war. For there is the certainty as to what will follow when we leave.

When the British left Delhi in 1947, millions of former subjects died during the partition of the territory into Pakistan and India and the mutual slaughter of Muslims and Hindus.

When the French departed Algeria in 1962, the “Harkis” they left behind paid the price of being loyal to the Mother Country.

When we abandoned our allies in South Vietnam, the result was mass murder in the streets, concentration camps and hundreds of thousands of boat people in the South China Sea, a final resting place for many. In Cambodia, it was a holocaust.

Trump, however, was elected to end America’s involvement in Middle East wars. And if he has been persuaded that he simply cannot liquidate these wars — Libya, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Afghanistan — he will likely end up sacrificing his presidency, trying to rescue the failures of those who worked hardest to keep him out of the White House.

Consider the wars, active and potential, Trump faces.

Writes Bob Merry in the fall issue of The National interest:

“War between Russia and the West seems nearly inevitable. No self-respecting nation facing inexorable encirclement by an alliance of hostile neighbors can allow such pressures and forces to continue indefinitely. Eventually (Russia) must protect its interests through military action.”

If Pyongyang tests another atom bomb or ICBM, some national security aides to Trump are not ruling out preventive war.

Trump himself seems hell-bent on tearing up the nuclear deal with Iran. This would lead inexorably to a U.S. ultimatum, where Iran would be expected to back down or face a war that would set the Persian Gulf ablaze.

Yet the country did not vote for confrontation or war.

America voted for Trump’s promise to improve ties with Russia, to make Europe shoulder more of the cost of its defense, to annihilate ISIS and extricate us from Mideast wars, to stay out of future wars.

America voted for economic nationalism and an end to the mammoth trade deficits with the NAFTA nations, EU, Japan and China.

America voted to halt the invasion across our Southern border and to reduce legal immigration to ease the downward pressure on American wages and the competition for working-class jobs.

Yet today we hear talk of upping and extending the U.S. troop presence in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria, of confronting Iran, of sending anti-tank and anti-aircraft weapons to Ukraine to battle pro-Russia rebels in the east.

Can the new custodians of Trump’s populist-nationalist and America First agenda, the generals and the Goldman Sachs alumni association, be entrusted to carry it out?

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, “Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.”

 Tagged , , , , . 24 comments

America’s Second Civil War

Civil War statue toppled by protesters in Durham N.C. this week. (You Tube)

“They had found a leader, Robert E. Lee — and what a leader! … No military leader since Napoleon has aroused such enthusiastic devotion among troops as did Lee when he reviewed them on his horse Traveller.”

So wrote Samuel Eliot Morison in his magisterial “The Oxford History of the American People” in 1965.

First in his class at West Point, hero of the Mexican War, Lee was the man to whom President Lincoln turned to lead his army. But when Virginia seceded, Lee would not lift up his sword against his own people, and chose to defend his home state rather than wage war upon her.

This veneration of Lee, wrote Richard Weaver, “appears in the saying attributed to a Confederate soldier, ‘The rest of us may have … descended from monkeys, but it took a God to make Marse Robert.'”

Growing up after World War II, this was accepted history.

Yet, on the militant left today, the name Lee evokes raw hatred and howls of “racist and traitor.” A clamor has arisen to have all statues of him and all Confederate soldiers and statesmen pulled down from their pedestals and put in museums or tossed onto trash piles.

What has changed since 1965?

It is not history. There have been no great new discoveries about Lee.

What has changed is America herself. She is not the same country. We have passed through a great social, cultural and moral revolution that has left us irretrievably divided on separate shores.

And the politicians are in panic.

Two years ago, Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe called the giant statues of Lee and “Stonewall” Jackson on Richmond’s Monument Avenue “parts of our heritage.” After Charlottesville, New York-born-and-bred McAuliffe, entertaining higher ambitions, went full scalawag, demanding the statues be pulled down as “flashpoints for hatred, division, and violence.”

Who hates the statues, Terry? Who’s going to cause the violence? Answer: The Democratic left whom Terry must now appease.

McAuliffe is echoed by Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam, the Democratic candidate in November to succeed McAuliffe. GOP nominee Ed Gillespie wants Monument Avenue left alone.

The election is the place to decide this, but the left will not wait.

In Durham, North Carolina, our Taliban smashed the statue of a Confederate soldier. Near the entrance of Duke University Chapel, a statue of Lee has been defaced, the nose broken off.

Wednesday at dawn, Baltimore carried out a cultural cleansing by taking down statues of Lee and Maryland Chief Justice Roger Taney who wrote the Dred Scott decision and opposed Lincoln’s suspension of the right of habeas corpus.

Like ISIS, which smashed the storied ruins of Palmyra, and the al-Qaida rebels who ravaged the fabled Saharan city of Timbuktu, the new barbarism has come to America. This is going to become a blazing issue, not only between but within the parties.

For there are 10 Confederates in Statuary Hall in the Capitol, among them Lee, Georgia’s Alexander Stephens, vice president to Jefferson Davis, and Davis himself. The Black Caucus wants them gone.

Mount Rushmore-sized carvings of Lee, Jackson and Davis are on Stone Mountain, Georgia. Are they to be blasted off?

There are countless universities, colleges and high schools like Washington & Lee named for Confederate statesmen and soldiers. Across the Potomac from D.C. are Jefferson Davis Highway and Leesburg Pike to Leesburg itself, 25 miles north. Are all highways, streets, towns and counties named for Confederates to be renamed? What about Fort Bragg?

On every Civil War battlefield, there are monuments to the Southern fallen. Gettysburg has hundreds of memorials, statues and markers. But if, as the left insists we accept, the Confederates were traitors trying to tear America apart to preserve an evil system, upon what ground do Democrats stand to resist the radical left’s demands?

What do we do with those battlefields where Confederates were victorious: Bull Run, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville?

“Where does this all end?” President Trump asked.

It doesn’t. Not until America’s histories and biographies are burned and new texts written to Nazify Lee, Jackson, Davis and all the rest, will a newly indoctrinated generation of Americans accede to this demand to tear down and destroy what their fathers cherished.

And once all the Confederates are gone, one must begin with the explorers, and then the slave owners like Presidents Washington, Jefferson and Madison, who seceded from slave-free Britain. White supremacists all.

Andrew Jackson, Henry Clay of Kentucky and John Calhoun must swiftly follow.

Then there are all those segregationists. From 1865 to 1965, virtually all of the great Southern senators were white supremacists.

In the first half of the 20th century, Woodrow Wilson and FDR carried all 11 states of a rigidly segregationist South all six times they ran, and FDR rewarded Dixie by putting a Klansman on the Supreme Court.

While easy for Republicans to wash their hands of such odious elements as Nazis in Charlottesville, will they take up the defense of the monuments and statues that have defined our history, or capitulate to the icon-smashers?

In this Second American Civil War, whose side are you on?

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.

 Tagged , , , , . 109 comments

If We Erase Our History, Who Are We?

When the Dodge Charger of 20-year-old Nazi sympathizer James Alex Fields Jr., plunged into that crowd of protesters Saturday, killing 32-year-old Heather Heyer, Fields put Charlottesville on the map of modernity alongside Ferguson.

Before Fields ran down the protesters, and then backed up, running down more, what was happening seemed but a bloody brawl between extremists on both sides of the issue of whether Robert E. Lee’s statue should be removed from Emancipation Park, formerly Lee Park.

With Heyer’s death, the brawl was elevated to a moral issue. And President Donald Trump’s initial failure to denounce the neo-Nazi and Klan presence was declared a moral failure.

How did we get here, and where are we going?

In June of 2015, 21-year-old Dylann Roof gunned down nine Christians at an evening Bible study in Charleston’s Emanuel AME Church. A review of Roof’s selfies and website showed him posing with the Confederate battle flag.

Gov. Nikki Haley, five years in office, instantly pivoted and called for removal of the battle flag from the Confederate war memorial on the State House grounds, as a “deeply offensive symbol of a brutally offensive past.”

This ignited a national clamor to purge all statues that lionize Confederate soldiers and statesmen.

In Maryland, demands have come for removing statues and busts of Chief Justice Roger Taney, the author of the Dred Scott decision. Statues of Gen. “Stonewall” Jackson, President Jefferson Davis and Robert E. Lee have been pulled down in New Orleans.

After Charlottesville, pressure is building for removal of the statues of Lee, Jackson, Davis and Gen. “Jeb” Stuart from historic Monument Avenue in Richmond, capital of the Confederacy.

Many Southern towns, including Alexandria, Virginia, have statues of Confederate soldiers looking to the South. Shall we pull them all down? And once all the Southern Civil War monuments are gone, should we go after the statues of the slave owners whom we Americans have heroized?

Gen. George Washington and his subordinate, “Light Horse Harry” Lee, father of Robert E. Lee, were slave owners, as was Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe and Andrew Jackson. Five of our first seven presidents owned slaves, as did James K. Polk, who invaded and annexed the northern half of Mexico, including California.

Jefferson, with his exploitation of Sally Hemings and neglect of their children, presents a particular problem. While he wrote in the Declaration of Independence of his belief that “all men are created equal,” his life and his depiction of Indians in that document belie this.

And Jefferson is both on the face of Mount Rushmore and has a memorial in the U.S. capital.

Another term applied to the “Unite the Right” gathering in Charlottesville is that they are “white supremacists,” a mortal sin to modernity. But here we encounter an even greater problem.

Looking back over the history of a Western Civilization, which we call great, were not the explorers who came out of Spain, Portugal, France, Holland and England all white supremacists?

They conquered in the name of the mother countries all the lands they discovered, imposed their rule upon the indigenous peoples, and vanquished and eradicated the native-born who stood in their way.

Who, during the centuries-long discovery and conquest of the New World, really believed that the lives of the indigenous peoples were of equal worth with those of the colonizers?

They believed European Man had the right to rule the world.

Beginning in the 16th century, Western imperialists ruled much of what was called the civilized world. Was not the British Empire, one of the great civilizing forces in human history, a manifestation of British racial superiority?

And if being a segregationist disqualifies one from being venerated in our brave new world, what do we do with Woodrow Wilson, who thought “Birth of a Nation” a splendid film and who re-segregated the U.S. government?

In 1955, Prime Minister Churchill, imperialist to the core, urged his Cabinet to consider the slogan, “Keep England White.”

Nor is a belief in the superiority of one’s race, religion, tribe and culture unique to the West. What is unique, what is an experiment without precedent, is what we are about today.

We have condemned and renounced the scarlet sins of the men who made America and embraced diversity, inclusivity and equality.

Our new America is to be a land where all races, tribes, creeds and cultures congregate, all are treated equally, and all move ever closer to an equality of results through the regular redistribution of opportunity, wealth and power.

We are going to become “the first universal nation.”

“All men are created equal” is an ideological statement. Where is the scientific or historic proof for it? Are we building our utopia on a sandpile of ideology and hope?

Nevertheless, on to Richmond!

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of a new book, Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.

 Tagged , , , . 91 comments
← Older posts