Author Archives: Victorhanson

Victor Davis Hanson is the Martin and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow in Residence in Classics and Military History at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, a professor of Classics Emeritus at California State University, Fresno, and a nationally syndicated columnist for Tribune Media Services. He is also the Wayne & Marcia Buske Distinguished Fellow in History, Hillsdale College, where he teaches each fall semester courses in military history and classical culture.

He recently published an historical novel The End of Sparta (2012), a realistic retelling of Epaminondas invasion and liberation of Spartan-control Messenia. In The Father of Us All (2011), he collected earlier essays on warfare ancient and modern. His upcoming history The Savior Generals(2013) analyzes how five generals in the history of the West changed the course of battles against all odds.

He was awarded the National Humanities Medal in 2007 and the Bradley Prize in 2008.

Hanson, who was the fifth successive generation to live in the same house on his family’s farm, was a full-time orchard and vineyard grower from 1980-1984, before joining the nearby CSU Fresno campus in 1984 to initiate a classical languages program. In 1991, he was awarded an American Philological Association Excellence in Teaching Award, which is given yearly to the country’s top undergraduate teachers of Greek and Latin. Hanson has been a National Endowment for the Humanities fellow at the Center for Advanced Studies in the Behavioral Sciences, Stanford, California (1992-93), a visiting professor of classics at Stanford University (1991-92), a recipient of the Eric Breindel Award for opinion journalism (2002), an Alexander Onassis Fellow (2001), and was named alumnus of the year of the University of California, Santa Cruz (2002). He was also the visiting Shifrin Professor of Military History at the U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland (2002-3). He received the Manhattan Institute’s Wriston Lectureship in 2004, and the 2006 Nimitz Lectureship in Military History at UC Berkeley in 2006.

Hanson is the author of hundreds of articles, book reviews, scholarly papers, and newspaper editorials on matters ranging from ancient Greek, agrarian and military history to foreign affairs, domestic politics, and contemporary culture. He has written or edited 17 books, including Warfare and Agriculture in Classical Greece (1983; paperback ed. University of California Press, 1998); The Western Way of War (Alfred Knopf, 1989; 2d paperback ed. University of California Press, 2000); Hoplites: The Ancient Greek Battle Experience (Routledge, 1991; paperback., 1992); The Other Greeks: The Family Farm and the Agrarian Roots of Western Civilization(Free Press, 1995; 2nd paperback ed., University of California Press, 2000);Fields without Dreams: Defending the Agrarian Idea (Free Press, 1996; paperback, Touchstone, 1997; The Bay Area Book reviewers Non-fiction winner for 1996); The Land Was Everything: Letters from an American Farmer (Free Press, 2000; a Los Angeles Times Notable book of the year); The Wars of the Ancient Greeks (Cassell, 1999; paperback, 2001); The Soul of Battle (Free Press, 1999, paperback, Anchor/Vintage, 2000); Carnage and Culture (Doubleday, 2001; Anchor/Vintage, 2002; a New York Times bestseller); An Autumn of War (Anchor/Vintage, 2002); Mexifornia: A State of Becoming (Encounter, 2003),Ripples of Battle (Doubleday, 2003), and Between War and Peace (Random House, 2004).

A War Like No Other: How the Athenians and Spartans Fought the Peloponnesian War, was published by Random House in October 2005. It was named one of the New York Times Notable 100 Books of 2006. Hanson coauthored, with John Heath, Who Killed Homer? The Demise of Classical Education and the Recovery of Greek Wisdom (Free Press, 1998; paperback, Encounter Press, 2000); with Bruce Thornton and John Heath, Bonfire of the Humanities (ISI Books, 2001); and with Heather MacDonald, and Steven Malanga, The Immigration Solution: A Better Plan Than Today’s (Ivan Dee 2007). He edited a collection of essays on ancient warfare, Makers of Ancient Strategy (Princeton University Press, 2010).

Hanson has written for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, International Herald Tribune, New York Post, National Review, Washington Times, Commentary, The Washington Post, Claremont Review of Books, American Heritage, New Criterion, Policy Review, Wilson Quarterly, Weekly Standard, Daily Telegraph, and has been interviewed often on National Public Radio, PBS Newshour, Fox News, CNN, and C-Span’s Book TV and In-Depth. He serves on the editorial board of the Military History Quarterly, and City Journal.

Since 2001, Hanson has written a weekly column for National Review Online, and in 2004, began his weekly syndicated column for Tribune Media Services. In 2006, he also began thrice-weekly blog for Pajamas Media, Works and Days.

Hanson was educated at the University of California, Santa Cruz (BA, Classics, 1975, ‘highest honors’ Classics, ‘college honors’, Cowell College), the American School of Classical Studies, Athens (regular member, 1978-79) and received his Ph.D. in Classics from Stanford University in 1980. He divides his time between his forty-acre tree and vine farm near Selma, California, where he was born in 1953, and the Stanford campus.

The Forgotten Americans

Obama’s coalition is held together only by his personal mythography.

by Victor Davis Hanson // National Review Online

Meet the Snobocrats

Jonathan Gruber’s disdain for the proverbial masses is thematic of the last six years.

by Victor Davis Hanson // National Review Online

Explaining Away Obama

by Victor Davis Hanson // PJMedia

Photo via PJMedia

Photo via PJMedia

The only mystery about the last six years is how much lasting damage has been done to the American experiment, at home and abroad. Our federal agencies are now an alphabet soup of incompetence and corruption [1]. How does the IRSever quite recover [2]? Will the Secret Service always be seen as veritable Keystone Cops? Is the GSA now a reckless party-time organization [3]? Is the EPA institutionalized as a rogue appendage of the radical green movement with a director who dabbles in online pseudonyms [4]? Do we accept that the Justice Department dispenses injustice or that the VA can be a lethal institution for our patriots? Is NASA now a Muslim outreach megaphone [5] as we hire Russia, the loser of the space race, to rocket us into orbit?

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A Moral Primer

Obama’s legacy: government-induced chaos at home, moral equivalence abroad.

by Victor Davis Hanson // National Review Online

Thank You

SMH 1 9Thank all of you so much for your kind messages and thoughts in these difficult times. You are all the only reason that I write, and your comments have brought our family such solace in untold ways.

Sincerely your friend, 

Victor Davis Hanson 

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Susannah Merry Hanson: Obituary

Image 17Susannah Merry Hanson

Susannah Merry Hanson, age 27, passed away suddenly on November 13 in Los Angeles, California after a brief illness.

She was born in Selma, California on December 31, 1986.  She is survived by her mother Cara Webb Hanson of Clovis and Santa Cruz; her father Victor Davis Hanson of Selma; her older sister Pauline Davis Hanson Steinback, brother-in-law Shane Steinback and their daughters Maeve and Lila Steinback of Santa Cruz; and her brother William Frank Hanson of Clovis.

She is also survived by her maternal grandparents Armond and Tawana Webb of Coarsegold, and uncles and aunts Alfred and Karen Hanson of Selma, Nels and Vicki Hanson of San Luis Obispo, Maren Nielsen and Rory Robertson of Fresno, Dan and Cheryl Webb of Woodbridge, and Brenda Morton of Madera. Read more →

The End of NATO

Image credit: Barbara Kelley

Image credit: Barbara Kelley

by Victor Davis Hanson // Defining Ideas

Declaring the North Atlantic Treaty Organization dead has been a pastime of analysts since the end of the Cold War. The alliance, today 28-members strong, has survived 65 years because its glaring contradictions were often overlooked, given the dangers of an expansionist and nuclear Soviet Union and its Warsaw Pact subjects.

From its beginning, NATO had billed itself as a democratic Western bastion against Soviet totalitarian aggression—if not always in practice then at least in theory. NATO never had much problem keeping Greece and Turkey in the alliance despite their occasionally oppressive, rightwing military dictatorships, given the strategic location of both and the need to keep the pair’s historical rivalries in-house. If the alliance’s exalted motto “animus inconsulendo liber” (“A free mind in consultation”) was not always applicable, NATO still protected something far better than the alternative.

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Voting ‘no’ on Obama’s immigration policies

by Victor Davis Hanson // TSM

Immigration reform activists in Washington, D.C., July 7, 2014. (Win McNamee/Getty)

Immigration reform activists in Washington, D.C., July 7, 2014. (Win McNamee/Getty)

Everyone finds a lesson in the Republican midterm tsunami.

One message was that so-called comprehensive immigration reform and broad amnesty have little national public support. Polls have long shown that, but so do last week’s election results.

Candidates in swing states who promised amnesties got no edge from such opportunistic posturing.

Candidates who pandered to identity groups and played the ethnic card lost in most cases.

Voters in liberal Oregon overwhelmingly rejected driver’s licenses for undocumented immigrants.

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Obamacare Architect Exposes Progressive Totalitarianism

by Bruce S. Thornton // FrontPage Magazine

Jonathan Gruber-MSNBC

Jonathan Gruber-MSNBC

Professor Jonathan Gruber of MIT, who designed the Affordable Care Act, used to be the symbol of the Democrats’ technocratic bona fides, and an example of how big government with its “scientific” experts can solve social and economic problems from health care to a warming planet. Yet a recently publicized video of remarks he made at a panel in 2013, along with 2 other videos in the same vein, has now made him the poster child of the elitist progressives’ contempt for the American people, and their sacrifice of prudence and reason to raw political power.

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Obama Midwifes a Nuclear Iran

by Bruce S. Thornton // FrontPage Magazine

Khamenei and Obama via Breitbart.com

Khamenei and Obama via Breitbart.com

The news that President Obama has sent a secret letter to Iranian leader Ayatollah Khamenei––apparently promising concessions on Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for help in defeating ISIS–– is a depressing reminder of how after nearly 40 years our leaders have not understood the Iranian Revolution. During the hostage crisis of 1979, Jimmy Carter sent left-wing former Attorney General Ramsay Clark to Tehran with a letter anxiously assuring the Ayatollah Khomeini that America desired good relations “based upon equality, mutual respect and friendship.” Khomeini refused even to meet with the envoys.

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