Saturday, May 28, 2005

LRC pick
What happened to the antiwar movement?
By Joseph Sobran
‘The Movement’ (not just the antiwar part) of the 1960s was an instrument of great evil but thinking men as diverse as Mr Sobran and even the late obscure Fr Seraphim (Rose) see that in some ways it had a point: some changes are good.

(Admitting that apparently wasn’t good enough for the Movement itself, though, which in its spoiled baby-boomer arrogance thought it had the charism of infallibility, and a dumb blind faith in ‘change’ no different from the older generation’s mistakes.)

There was the understandable romantic reaction to the early 20th century’s cold, sterile secular faith in technology, etc. (hippies going to communes to bake bread and have babies as the funny, pithy Camille Paglia observed) and the antiwar movement, which unlike in the late 1960s is marginalized if seen or heard at all.

(I’ve been on about six antiwar marches and mostly what I see are ageing boomers representing history’s leftovers — such as silly Commie front groups — and the loud ‘Free Mumia’ idiots*.)

Based on what the common man thought he knew at the time Vietnam seemed to make sense, if you really thought there was a global Communist threat. Iraq doesn’t, unless you believe like the government really wants you to (despite PC pro forma remarks to the contrary) that all Arabs are alike.

Many people don’t remember that Vietnam was an example of liberal foreign policy given added selling power by the Cold War: nation-building, exporting democracy, blah blah. Liberal poster boy JFK upped US involvement there. (Read The Quiet American: after the French lost at Dien Bien Phu, the Europeans had it sussed before the Gulf of Tonkin battle was faked.)

And the authentic, peace-loving Right — on the way out since World War II and being given a death-blow in mainstream discourse by CIA employee Bill Buckley and his National Review — including strident anti-Communists, were divided about it.

Famous anti-Communist Arcbishop Fulton Sheen famously came to oppose the war.

Even the John Birch Society were split on the issue.

(The Communists won Vietnam’s civil war and Asia dominoed a little but the world didn’t after all. Communism collapsed from its own internal contradictions as wise men like Murray Rothbard thought it would.)

Today the liberals, both of the Democratic and the neocon varieties, are doing it again.

*Here is that story.

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