Ed Driscoll

Pat's Completely Lost it

Charles Johnson is livid over a recent Pat Buchanan op-ed titled “Was the Holocaust Inevitable?”, and I can’t say I blame him. Key passage from Buchanan here:

That Hitler was a rabid anti-Semite is undeniable. “Mein Kampf” is saturated in anti-Semitism. The Nuremberg Laws confirm it. But for the six years before Britain declared war, there was no Holocaust, and for two years after the war began, there was no Holocaust.Not until midwinter 1942 was the Wannsee Conference held, where the Final Solution was on the table.

That conference was not convened until Hitler had been halted in Russia, was at war with America and sensed doom was inevitable. Then the trains began to roll.

And why did Hitler invade Russia? This writer quotes Hitler 10 times as saying that only by knocking out Russia could he convince Britain it could not win and must end the war.

Hitchens mocks this view, invoking the Hitler-madman theory.

“Could we have a better definition of derangement and megalomania than the case of a dictator who overrules his own generals and invades Russia in wintertime … ?”

Christopher, Hitler invaded Russia on June 22.

The Holocaust was not a cause of the war, but a consequence of the war. No war, no Holocaust.

Did I read that passage correctly? It’s the fault of England and America entering the war that the Holocaust occurred? And if they hadn’t, Europe and its Jews would have lived happily ever after under Nazi rule? Even though Germany’s euthanasia experiments predate the outbreak of WWII? And the systematic killing of Jews in Europe and Russia predates the Wannsee conference? And in Mein Kampf, Hitler wrote that he wished thousands of Jews had been gassed in WWI?

While Pat at least acknowledges (grudgingly?) that the Holocaust took place, he’s rapidly going down the path already traveled by David Irving.

A few months ago, shortly after William F. Buckley’s death, Jonathan Tobin wrote:

Long after he chased the Birchers out of NR, Buckley found himself forced to confront the issue again. When longtime colleagues Pat Buchanan and Joseph Sobran used their bully pulpits on the right to bash Israel and stigmatize Jews for their support for the state, it was again Buckley who took on the haters.Buckley repudiated Sobran’s writing, which he labeled anti-Semitic, and pushed him off the magazine’s masthead.

As the issue continued to percolate in the aftermath of the Persian Gulf war in December 1991, he devoted an entire issue of the magazine to an essay titled “In Search of Anti-Semitism” (which was also the title of the book he later published on the same subject), in which he took on Buchanan, who was preparing an insurgent run for the White House against the first President Bush.

His conclusion was damning: “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, whatever it was that drove him to say and do it,” Buckley wrote.

At the time, I doubt even WFB knew something like this was coming from Buchanan.