Yes, awarding the Peace Prize to virtual any US president is a contradiction in terms. But does Cockburn have to totally mangle history in piling on his damning evidence?
Regarding Wilson: (1) By bringing the United States into WWI, he undoubtedly hastened that dreadful bloodbath. (2) His advocacy of eugenics had nothing to do with the 1924 Immigration Act, which was motivated by racism and the Red Scare; the act greatly lessened the numbers of immigrants but did not "bar" Jews "and other suspect genetic material." (3) Wilson did not promote "ethnic nationalism" at the Versailles summit, which, in any case, was hardly the "motive force for the Final Solution." (I'd lay the blame on scientific racism and a deformed Aryanism.).
Regarding Carter, thanks to Cockburn for pointing out the US's key role in starting Afghanistan's continuing three decades-old civil war. However, he deliberately omits the fact that the "progressive" Afghan government was controlled by an old-line Communist Party that ruled with violent ruthlessness.
Printing columns with such false or extremely biased historical statements undermines their larger truth, as well as the overall credibility of The Nation.
Daniel P. Jones
Oct 20 2009 - 5:19am