Victor Davis Hanson Private Papers

The Confederate Mind

Victor Davis Hanson // National Review

Progressives such as Elizabeth Warren resurrect the race-based thinking of the antebellum South: ‘One drop’ and you’re a bona fide minority.

Senator Elizabeth Warren has doubled down on her insistence that she is Native American.


In her past incarnations, she probably used that yarn in hopes of helping her win a law professorship at Harvard, which touted her as the law school’s first indigenous-American professor (and others apparently referenced her as Harvard Law’s “first woman of color”). She has refused to back down (and also refused to take a DNA test), even after Native American genealogists disputed her claim.

But what if indeed the pink and blond Warren were found to have 1/32nd or even 1/16th Native American “blood”? Why would that artifact magically make her “Indian,” much less a victim of something or someone, or at least outfitted with a minority cachet?

Does she have an idea of the absurdity of current progressive race obsessions and their creepy pedigrees? In wartime Western Europe, one of the justifications for making Jews wear yellow stars was that it was otherwise impossible to determine whether they were Jews at all, which of course made the entire Nazi edifice of supposed overt racial inferiority a nightmarish joke.

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Leave McMaster Be

Victor Davis Hanson // National Review

About every two months, there are rumors that Gen. H. R. McMaster might be let go as Trump’s national-security adviser (along with many other stellar appointees).

The world, however, is a much more logical and predictable place than it was 14 months ago. We’ve restored ties to the Gulf monarchies; Israel is again treated with respect. There is no talk any more of an ascendant ISIS caliphate. Ukrainians have been armed; Putin has had tighter sanctions slapped on him. NATO-member defense expenditures are up 5 percent. The U.S. military is being rebooted. Controversial moves, such as leaving the Paris climate accords and moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, are no longer controversial and are winning a consensus that such moves were overdue. The existential threat of a North Korean nuclear missile with the potential to hit the West Coast that was dropped on the nation last year is being dealt with through stepped up efforts to recalibrate missile defense, regional allied solidarity, historically tough U.N. sanctions, and a restored U.S. deterrence, rather than the old talk, talk, talk/give, give, give protocol of the “Agreed Framework,” “Six-Party Talks,” and “Strategic Patience” failures of the last 30 years.

The general doctrine of the National Security Council’s strategic blueprint — principled realism — is more or less a euphemism for the restoration of deterrence. Perhaps it is now less likely that Iran will send missiles in the direction of U.S. warships or take American sailors hostage or that U.S. diplomats in hostile countries will be subject to hearing loss. Much of that turnabout has been due, in various ways, public and private, to Trump’s national-security team of Mattis-Haley-Pompeo — and McMaster — who all have tried to define Trump’s Jacksonianism as an approach that is neither Obama recessional nor Bush-era preemptory nation-building. The appointment of Mike Pompeo at State solidifies that team.

On the principle that failure is punished and success rewarded, it makes no sense to lose someone integral to such progress, much less to chronically leak a wrongheaded move that would disrupt a successful team on the eve of dealing with both the North Korean threat and the various surreal side agreements and absurd protocols of the flawed Iran nuclear deal.

Lessons from Germany’s ‘Spring Offensive,’ 100 Years Later

Victor Davis Hanson // National Review

Germany lost World War I in a matter of months after near victory. The lessons from that defeat are still valuable today.

One hundred years ago this month, all hell broke loose in France. On March 21, 1918, the German army on the Western Front unleashed a series of massive attacks on the exhausted British and French armies.

German general Erich Ludendorff thought he could win World War I with one final blow. He planned to punch holes between the French and British armies. Then he would drive through their trenches to the English Channel, isolating and destroying the British army.

The Germans thought they had no choice but to gamble.

The British naval blockade of Germany after three years had reduced Germany to near famine. More than 200,000 American reinforcement troops were arriving each month in France. (Nearly 2 million would land altogether.) American farms and factories were sending over huge shipments of food and munitions to the Allies.

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03/13/2018 Angry Reader

From An Angry Reader:

You might have had that intolerable delay because of my son and I (sic). We’re (sic) you the old guy with the nasty glare? We are use (sic) to people like you. Did you ever hear the phrase, “liberty for all” or “equality for all?” You are a Trumpite, which means your (sic) special…How’s that working out for you? I love the Neo-Nazis, the draft deferments, porn stars, staff loyalty, the overt incompetency and overt racism. As a father of a son who is alive because of embryonic stem cell research and would sit in a pre-existing death care policy if you (sic) nutters had your way. By the way, science is real, empirical and not swayed by greed, racism or ignorance. The last three terms apply to you. You are a terrible historian, (sic) you are a Reactionary. And sorry you had to wait, asshole. Dos Vidanya, Stormy

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Swamp Things in the Russia Investigation

Victor Davis Hanson // American Greatness

“The Swamp” usually refers to the vast federal bureaucratic machinery of mostly unelected top officials who exercise influence and power without worry about the appearance of conflicts of interest. They are often exempt from the consequences of the laws and regulations that affect others. The chief characteristics of the swamp are the interlocking friendships, business relationships, marriages and partnerships in Washington, and their immune response against anyone who challenges them.

Robert Mueller’s investigation into alleged collusion between Russia and Donald Trump’s presidential campaign has proven the locus classicus of a dysfunctional and highly incestuous Washington culture—so much so that it borders on being a caricature of a Washington investigation.

The Origins of the Robert Mueller Appointment
How did it come about? Mueller’s acquaintance, former FBI Director James Comey (Mueller and Comey were lauded dating back to the Bush Administration as “brothers in arms”), has testified that he was so exasperated with the president that he leaked his own confidential and likely classified memos of presidential meetings to the press via a friend in order that it “might prompt the appointment of a special counsel.” It certainly did that. And mirabile dictu, the special counsel was soon none other than Robert Mueller with whom Comey had had a professional relationship in a variety of contexts for nearly 20 years. At some point, will one of Mueller’s staff have to depose him to ask whether he ever discussed the possibility of a special counsel appointment with Comey prior to Comey’s firing?

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The New Left Trumps the Old Right

Victor Davis Hanson // National Review

Anti-Semitism, racism, deception, and dirty tricks: For progressives, the ends justify the means.

‘White folks are going down. And Satan is going down. And Farrakhan, by God’s grace, has pulled the cover off of that Satanic Jew, and I’m here to say your time is up, your world is through.”

So spoke recently our Nietzschean Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan.

There is almost nothing new in his latest hate-filled accusations. Farrakhan in the past has praised Hitler and derided Judaism as a gutter religion. Yet I say “almost nothing new” because the 84-year-old Farrakhan is now empowered by a new generation of leftist, minority, and feminist activists such as Tamika Mallory, Carmen Perez, and Linda Sarsour, who coordinate marches with Farrakhan or ardently praise him.

Not long ago, Representative Danny Davis (D., Ill.) spoke up in behalf of Farrakhan, calling him  “an outstanding human being.” Davis went on to use an unfortunate choice of words: “The world is so much bigger than Farrakhan and the Jewish question.”

“The Jewish question”?

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The Rapid ‘Progress’ of Progressivism

Victor Davis Hanson // National Review

It leads to an endless race for equality and erodes prior rules.Not long ago I waited for a flight to board. The plane took off 45 minutes late. There were only two attendants to accommodate eleven passengers who had requested wheelchair assistance.

Such growing efforts to ensure that the physically challenged can easily fly are certainly welcome. But when our plane landed — late and in danger of causing many passengers to miss their connecting flights — most of the eleven wheelchair-bound passengers left their seats unassisted and hurried out. It was almost as if newfound concerns about making connections had somehow improved their health during the flight.  

Putin’s nuclear posturing part of effort to win back displeased public

This article is by a colleague of mine: Dr. Paul Gregory // The Hill

Vladimir Putin served up his election platform for his perfunctory March 18 re-election in his annual address to the two houses of Russia’s parliament on Thursday. Putin addressed two audiences — the Russian people and his external enemies, namely the U.S. and NATO.

Putin promised his domestic audience that, with him in the Kremlin, they can enjoy both guns and butter. He will maintain a strong military that can withstand any threat from the West, which Putin’s propaganda has convinced the Russian people is real.

Some three-quarters of Russians consider the U.S. a threat, and almost 60 percent fear NATO. True, military spending is up, but, with Putin’s wise leadership, living standards will rise, inflation will be dampened and poverty rates will fall.

Russia voters should be thankful to their president (according to him) for restoring Russia to its rightful status as a superpower, even though it meant a cost in terms of living standards…

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Strategika Issue 48: U.S. Military Policy in Afghanistan

Since the war in Afghanistan began in late 2001, three successive presidential administrations have claimed that the Taliban are on the verge of collapse, the Afghan military is close to securing the country, and Afghan leaders in Kabul are just one step away from providing legitimate governance.

Click here to read more at the Hoover Institution

Trump Syndromes

Victor Davis Hanson // National Review

Trump creates hysteria, both rabid antipathies and fervent support.

General chaos surrounds President Trump. Few dispute that. All argue over the origins, causes, and nature of these wild reactions to our president.

The Left’s Hatred

Take the Left’s loathing of Trump that arises from three sources.

First, Trump supposedly has no shame. The traditional leftist use of invectives such as “racist,” “sexist,” “homophobe,” and “nativist” appears to have had little effect on Trump — as it seems to have done on McCain (who in 2008 ruled out attacks on Obama’s personal pastor, the Reverend Jeremiah Wright) and Romney (who passed on standing down debate moderator and rank partisan Candy Crowley).

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