The Ten Worst U.S. Purveyors of Antisemitism, #6: Patrick Buchanan


Here’s Pat Buchanan in 1990, not long before the First Iraq War:

There are only two groups that are beating the drums for war in the Middle East—the Israeli Defense Ministry and its amen corner in the United States.

Here he is in 2004:

[N]eoconservatives…Perle and Wolfowitz and Wurmser and the others, working with Netanyahu, had an agenda for war with Iraq that was going nowhere.

9/11 happens, and they put this agenda before a president, who in my judgment was untutored, as his father was not. Reagan would not have done this. I don’t think his father would have done this.

They captured Rumsfeld, and they captured Cheney, and I think they captured the president….

Also in 2004:

Who would benefit from these endless wars in a region that holds nothing vital to America—save oil? … Who would benefit from a “war of civilizations” with Islam? Who other than these neoconservatives and Ariel Sharon?

In 2008:

Israel and its Fifth Column in this city seek to stampede us into a war with Iran….

And here he is on December 11, 2013:

One wonders if Netanyahu and his amen corner in Congress have considered the backlash worldwide should they succeed in scuttling Geneva and putting this nation on the fast track to another Mideast war Israel and Saudi Arabia may want but America does not.

In psychological terms, this is called obsession. In ideological terms, it’s called antisemitism. It casts Jews as a uniquely powerful, malign, manipulative group.

Sprinkled through Buchanan’s writings one can find derisive references to the non-Israelis and non-Jews who were hawks on Iraq in the 1990s, or on Iraq in the 2000s, or are hawks on Iran today—Donald Rumsfeld, Richard Cheney, George W. Bush, William Bennett, the Wall Street Journal, James Woolsey, John Bolton, Lindsey Graham, and Trent Franks are a few.

In Buchanan’s telling they are all in thrall to Israel, the source of all evil and the only threat to America emanating from the Middle East. No one, not even a president, a defense secretary, can think for himself; anyone who has ever been a hawk on any of those three issues has never had a valid argument but has instead been corralled by the Jewish lust for war.

Nothing has ever made Buchanan think otherwise. Not 9/11; not Iran’s 2011 attempt to assassinate the Saudi ambassador in a Washington restaurant; not its ongoing record of anti-American terror; not its whole parliament joining in “Death to America” chants on November 3, 2013; not its continuing work on ICBMs; not dire warnings on its nuclear progress by groups like the IAEA and the ISIS (in the Jews’ pocket?); not statements by Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei like “our people say ‘Death to America,’ and this is like saying ‘I seek God’s refuge from the accursed Satan….’”

Not the fact that the U.S.-led coalition for the First Iraq War included Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Syria, Morocco, Oman, the UAR, Qatar, Pakistan…all members of the “amen corner”? Not the fact that American Jews are mostly left-liberal doves and 70 percent of them opposed the Second Iraq War. Not the fact that Ariel Sharon advised George Bush against that war.

But Pat Buchanan’s type of antisemitism has never been trumped by facts.


It is not a good sign when someone seems to need moral tutoring about Hitler, the Holocaust, and the Jews, and makes statements that are perilously close to, or actually cross, the boundary of the legitimate.

Back in 1977 Buchanan wrote in the St. Louis Globe-Democrat:

Those of us in childhood during the war years were introduced to Hitler only as a caricature.… Though Hitler was indeed racist and anti-Semitic to the core, a man who without compunction could commit murder and genocide, he was also an individual of great courage, a soldier’s soldier in the Great War, a leader steeped in the history of Europe, who possessed oratorical powers that could awe even those who despised him. But Hitler’s success was not based on his extraordinary gifts alone. His genius was an intuitive sense of the mushiness, the character flaws, the weakness masquerading as morality that was in the hearts of the statesmen who stood in his path.

Great courage, extraordinary gifts, genius. Although Buchanan also mentions some negative traits, that has the clear ring of admiration—profound admiration—for the Führer; while it is “the statesmen” who evoke Buchanan’s real animosity.

In 1990 Buchanan penned a New York Post column passionately defending war criminal John Demjanjuk (acquitted in Israel on a technicality in 1993, convicted in Germany in 2011). From Hitler-admiration it is not a huge psychological leap to Holocaust denial, and Buchanan engaged in it here, writing derisively about the Treblinka death camp that “diesel engines do not emit enough carbon dioxide to kill anybody” and saying Holocaust survivors had “group fantasies of martyrdom and heroics.”

Then there was Buchanan’s 2008 book Churchill, Hitler, and the Unnecessary War, which claimed that Hitler did not want World War II and it was really Britain that brought it about.

From such a mindset it is, again, not a big leap to statements such as this one in 2007:

If you want to know ethnicity and power in the United States Senate, 13 members of the Senate are Jewish folks who are from 2 percent of the population.

Could it be that those thirteen were engaged citizens who made good impressions on the voters of their respective states? Not for Buchanan, who again sees sinister “power” at play. Up with Hitler, down with Jews.PJ-Buchanan-3

In 1991 William F. Buckley wrote: “I find it impossible to defend Pat Buchanan against the charge that what he did and said during the period under examination amounted to anti-Semitism.” Unfortunately, Buchanan’s antisemitism has not been enough to put him beyond the bounds of decency. Unlike cruder characters such as David Duke or Gordon Duff, Buchanan writes well and knows how to use antisemitism to tweak sensibilities and provoke within a veneer of serious analysis.

So Buchanan, despite losing his gig at MSNBC, remains a star of the airwaves and the internet to this day. Though shunned by much of the conservative camp, his “Jews are dragging us into war” rants continue to run on major sites like World Net Daily and Townhall. But make no mistake: Patrick Buchanan is a significant voice of antisemitism.