Welcome to Pat Buchanan’s mind
By Bob Harris
IN HIS NEW BOOK, A Republic, Not an Empire, Pat Buchanan says that Britain and France were wrong to go to war with Germany in 1939. He also says that Hitler was not a threat to the United States.
This is news?
Pat Buchanan says a lot of things. All of this is on the record:
Pat has called Holocaust survivors’ memories “group fantasies of martyrdom.”
Pat calls the U.S. Congress “Israeli-occupied territory,” complaining that foreign policy is dominated by Jews.
Pat complained recently that there are too many Jews and Asians at Ivy League schools.
Pat wrote the section of Ronald Reagan’s speech at Bitburg, the cemetery in which Nazi SS troops were buried, calling the Nazi soldiers “victims just as surely as the victims in the concentration camps.”
Pat has written, along with those who deny the Holocaust ever happened, that carbon monoxide from diesel engines could not have killed 850,000 Jews at Treblinka.
Pat has called for closing the Justice Department office that prosecutes Nazi war criminals.
Pat says Hitler himself was “an individual of great courage” and “extraordinary gifts,” even “a soldier’s soldier,” in spite of his genocidal habits.
Pat thinks illegal immigrants ought to be deported . . . except for John Demjanjuk, the accused Nazi guard who admittedly entered America illegally in 1952. Pat has also argued against the deportation of Estonian war criminal Karl Linnas and for restoring the U.S. citizenship of Nazi scientist Arthur Rudolph.
In his autobiography, among Pat’s heroes are the “soldier-patriots” Francisco Franco and Augusto Pinochet. Franco was the dictator of Spain. Pinochet was the dictator of Chile.
Both overthrew democracies and suppressed dissent with violence, using anti-communism as a rationale.
ON THE SUBJECT of democracy itself, Pat says that “like all idolatries, democratism substitutes a false god for the real, a love of process for a love of country” and that “if the people are corrupt, the more democracy, the worse the government.”
Pat once said that sanctions against South Africa were “destroying the [region’s] one working economy . . . because it doesn’t adopt an idiotic ‘One man, one vote’ regimen.”
Regarding apartheid, Pat even questioned that “white rule of a black majority is inherently wrong. Where did we get that idea? The Founding Fathers did not believe this.”
Pat called Dr. Martin Luther King “one of the most divisive men in contemporary history.” He also wrote a memo to Nixon saying that integration would result in “perpetual friction, as the incapable are placed consciously by government side by side with the capable.”
On homosexuality, Pat has written “its rise almost always is accompanied, as in the [pre-Hitler] Weimar Republic, with a decay of society.”
Pat has also written that “homosexuals appear literally hell-bent on Satanism and suicide” and that “AIDS is nature’s retribution for violating the laws of nature.”
See? Pat Buchanan says a lot of things.
Pat even told CNN last week that “there’s not a trace of bigotry in my heart.”
THE PEOPLE who know Pat best think otherwise. William Buckley, Pat’s longtime friend and mentor, once wrote a 20,000-word essay concluding it was “impossible to defend Pat Buchanan against the charge” of anti-Semitism.
Newspaper columnist William Safire, a colleague of Pat’s from both the Nixon White House and a lifetime of punditry, has essentially concurred.
Former Republican presidential candidate Alan Keyes has angrily confronted Buchanan staffers for appealing to racism.
Ex-education czar William Bennett has described Pat’s politics as “flirting with fascism.”
And now Sen. John McCain concludes that Pat Buchanan’s views are somewhat outside the mainstream.
This is news?
What should be news is how few other mainstream figures are willing to do the same.
From the September 30-October 6, 1999 issue of the Sonoma County Independent.
© Metro Publishing Inc.