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Who Will Write Dangerous Nationalists?

John Tabin is right: Sullivan is wrong to call AmSpec paleocon.  To its credit, AmSpec has various perspectives in it, including some paleo or at least paleo-friendly articles, but criticising bad, tendentious neocon readings of history does not in and of itself make anyone or anything paleocon.  But Sullivan is especially wrong to call it that because of this review of Kagan’s Dangerous Nation.  As Mr. Tabin correctly points out, Angelo Codevilla is wildly, intensely hawkish and hegemonist; he is one of those people who will bear the label imperialist as a badge of honour.  No one who has any sense of the various factions and arguments on the American right would ever confuse a Codevilla piece with anything related to paleos.  The Codevilla piece is mostly unobjectionable, which I find shocking to admit, since I normally feel myself breaking out in hives on those occasions when I have read Codevilla in the past.  It turns out that Kagan has written such a terrible book about American history and foreign policy that it even offends the historical sensibilities of a Claremont man.  That takes some real doing.   

Update: In case the absurdity of the paleo-Codevilla equation wasn’t completely obvious, here is the assessment of the elder Pod of Codevilla and the “superhawks”:

On the Right though it obviously is, this neighborhood of superhawks is as distant from the precincts of paleoconservatism as it is from the redoubts of the anti-American Left.

about the author

Daniel Larison is a senior editor at TAC, where he also keeps a solo blog. He has been published in the New York Times Book Review, Dallas Morning News, World Politics Review, Politico Magazine, Orthodox Life, Front Porch Republic, The American Scene, and Culture11, and was a columnist for The Week. He holds a PhD in history from the University of Chicago, and resides in Lancaster, PA. Follow him on Twitter.

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