Iraq Veterans against the war (Photo by Bill Hughes)
“A ‘Neocon’ is neither new or conservative, but old as Babylon and evil as Hell.” – Edward Abbey
Being an unrepentant Neocon, such as William (Bill) Kristol, means having never to say you’re sorry. To qualify, you need to be an ideologue, who also has paid no price for recklessly cheerleading 4,488 U.S. troops to their deaths in the illegal and immoral Iraq War, plus another 32,223 who were seriously wounded (2003-2011).
It also helps to have a significant media platform and not to give a good hoot about how many innocent Iraqis died via the U.S.-led invasion and/or the occupation of that country. (Try an estimated 655,000.)
By the way, false prophet, Kristol: Our troops found “No” Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq.
Let me formally introduce – William Kristol, age 67, out of New York City, now Northern Virginia, warmonger extraordinaire, ultra-conservative, and currently editor at large of “Bulwark” magazine.
For years, we’ve heard Kristol on the TV/Cable/Network shows making outrageous statements, like this one: “The war in Iraq could have terrifically good effects throughout the Middle East.” (09/18/2001).
The other day, May 20, 2020, Kristol was the subject of a puff piece profile in the “Washington Post,” by reporter KK Ottesen. The article made no mention of Kristol’s disgusting role in promoting the Iraq War. Instead, he was given the opportunity to rip President Donald Trump on how he has been mismanaging the coronavirus crisis. (Well, heck, everybody knows that.)
There was also no mention by the reporter of the possible real reasons that Kristol was dumping on Trump. One could be that during the 2016 presidential campaign, Trump had trashed Kristol’s and the Neocons’ support of the Iraq War.
And, also Trump has indicated he doesn’t have any plans to reignite another of Kristol’s favorites schemes -“a Cold War with Russia.” These are just two of the reasons the “Neocons, like Kristol, can’t stomach Trump,” according to the commentator, JP Sottile, of the “Consortium News.”
The idea that Kristol is some kind of genuine dissenter and is opposing Trump because he’s concerned about the quality of his leadership is pure nonsense. The “Washington Post” allowed Kristol to use the paper for this dubious exercise and it has no one to blame but itself.
During last year’s Democratic presidential primary, Kristol took a swipe at the candidate, Sen. Bernie Sanders, and posted a tweet that said: “#Never Sanders.” The popular anti-war candidate responded to Kristol: “Have you apologized to the nation for your foolish advocacy of the Iraq War? I make no apologies for opposing it.” Sanders then added this zinger: “I will do everything in my power to prevent a war with Iran.”
The Neocon replied: “I will defend my views on Iraq…as you defend yours.” Sen. Sanders underscored how Kristol had called for regime change in Iraq as early at 1998; and that Kristol also predicted the conflict would last “only two months;” and that he had repeatedly argued for the Bush-Cheney Gang to send in more troops. As early at 2006, Kristol was urging the U.S. to bomb Iran’s nuclear facilities, asking, “Why wait?”
Flashback: The first time I laid eyes on the cunning Neocon, Kristol was at a pro-Iraq War rally held on the National Mall, on April 12, 2003, in Washington, D.C. G. Gordon Liddy and the late, ex-U.S. Sen. Fred Thompson (R-TN) were there, along with some other Right Wing types.
What was really weird about the whole affair was the appearance of that so-called comedian, Ben Stein. He showed up on a huge video screen endorsing the war. It should have had “a warning label” on it!
I recall a lady in the modest crowd of about fifty at that event saying of Kristol: “Oh, look how small he is!” She was right. Kristol is, indeed, on the very short side. I’d say that he comes in at about 5 ft. 4 or 5 inches. It seems that, as a result of his tiny body frame, his head appears more massive than it really is. The rally was boring. I didn’t stay long.
In a way, Kristol reminded me, in a physical sense, of the late actor Peter Lorre. Whether Kristol has a “Little Man (Napolean) Complex,” or not, I will leave to the experts in the field. All I know for sure is that he’s a relentlessly angry, pusher of costly and unnecessary wars.
(During the Iraq War, there were countless protest actions mounted by ten of thousands of splendid antiwar activists across the country. Many of them were held on the National Mall, and other sites in our nation’s capital.)
Here is another gem from Kristol: “The first two battles of this new era are now over. The battles of Afghanistan and Iraq have been won decisively and honorably.” (April 28, 2003) And, then there is this whopper from the slippery Neocon: “The Iraqi elections of Jan. 30, 2005…could be a key moment…perhaps the key moment so far…in vindicating the ‘Bush/Cheney Doctrine’ as the right response to 9/11.” (March 7, 2005)
Of course, it wouldn’t be fair to leave out this one from Kristol: “It is much more likely that the situation in Iraq will stay more or less the same, or improve, in either case, Republicans will benefit from being the party of victory.” (Nov. 30, 2005)
As a result of an onslaught of Kristol’s articles and media appearances in support of the Iraq invasion, the “Washington Post’s” Richard Cohen dubbed the conflict: “Kristol’s War!” Right on, Mr. Cohen.
The estimated cost of the Iraq War to the U.S. taxpayers runs to a high of around $1.7 trillion!
If Kristol has any regrets with respect to his amoral advocacy for the Iraq War (which was launched by the Bush-Cheney Gang based on a pack of rotten lies) and/or about the staggering U.S. casualties in Iraq, I have never heard him express them.
If Kristol has any empathy for the innocent Iraqi dead and wounded, the Iraqi women and children who have suffered and are continuing to suffer from that conflict, along with the tens of thousands of Iraqi homes that have been destroyed, and also for those 3.8 million Iraqis made into refugees, then he’s kept those kinds of feelings to himself.
(The other amazing thing about Kristol is how he’s repeatedly able to get his distorted views on our televisions and in our newspapers. It’s like he has to only press a button and there he is. It is all so – Orwellian!)
In any event, when the name of William Kristol, the Neocon, is mentioned, I think callous indifference to human life and suffering.
The next time the Neocon Kristol visits the Arlington National Cemetery, over in Virginia, to honor our Iraqi War dead, will be his FIRST! Despite all of the above, he continues to argue for a U.S.-led attack on Iran. Kristol insists: “Invading Iran is not a bad idea!”
If warmongering isn’t a Hate Crime and/or a Hate Speech, then maybe it should be. (Peace Movement, please copy.) That would give the heartless Kristol something to think about when he advocates for the launching of yet another monstrosity, like the Iraq War.
Bill Hughes is an attorney, author, actor and photographer. His latest book is “Byline Baltimore.” It can be found at: https://www.amazon.com/William-Hughes/e/B00N7MGPXO/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1