Wednesday, March 09, 2005

In Defense of Paul Wolfowitz

In his Tuesday New York Times column, David Brooks stands up for one of the most unjustly villified individuals in recent American history:

Let us now praise Paul Wolfowitz. Let us now take another look at the man who has pursued - longer and more forcefully than almost anyone else - the supposedly utopian notion that people across the Muslim world might actually hunger for freedom.

Let us look again at the man who's been vilified by Michael Moore and the rest of the infantile left, who's been condescended to by the people who consider themselves foreign policy grown-ups, and who has become the focus of much anti-Semitism in the world today - the center of a zillion Zionist conspiracy theories, and a hundred zillion clever-Jew-behind-the-scenes calumnies.


If the trends of the last few months continue, Wolfowitz will be the subject of fascinating biographies decades from now, while many of his smuggest critics will be forgotten. Those biographies will mention not only his intellectual commitment but also his personal commitment, his years spent learning the languages of the places that concerned him, and the thousands of hours spent listening deferentially to the local heroes who led the causes he supported.

Giving Wolfowitz His Due

As Brooks points out, Paul Wolfowitz is a decent, dedicated public servant who has been a tireless advocate of fostering democracy throughout his career. With democratic change now coming to the Middle East, Wolfowitz's frequently mocked vision is looking more and more prescient. I too suspect that he will be remembered with honor long after Michael Moore and his ilk have become footnotes to history.


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