Ilan Goldenberg has it all figured out

I wish I did. Anyway, Goldenberg writes the following on Democracy Arsenal of a Norman Podhoretz – Fareed Zakaria mini-debate on CNN:

In six minutes of News Hour footage you can boil down the entire argument over Iran between the crazies (Podhoretz) and the sane people (Zakaria). Notice especially, Podhoretz’s repeated references to Hitler. The “what would Hitler do” argument, which is often accompanied by the classic “You are worse than Chamberlin argument” is the oldest rhetorical trick in the book. Fortunately, I just don’t think that a country with a GDP the size of Florida’s represents the same threat as the industrial behemoth that was Germany.


Hmmm… Yes, I heard Podhoretz say some of that, but I also heard him questioning the policy of deterrence in the case of Iran by differentiating between Stalinist/Maoist regimes and the Mullahs on religious grounds. The Mullahs have a specific apocalyptic theology, which Goldenberg chooses to ignore. Do the Mullahs believe all this themselves? Khomeini himself most likely did. But now? Goldenberg must be betting they’re just kidding – or just weekend believers. He could be right, for all I know. But he could be wrong too. Then his attack on Podhoretz as “crazy” would seem itself crazy, wouldn’t it?

(The original video is on Goldenberg’s site, though it seems have been redacted.)


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