Victor Davis Hanson Private Papers

Hanson: Elite media and pollsters ‘culpable’ for erosion of trust in institutions

Interview with Victor Davis Hanson via Fox News

Victor Davis Hanson: Election a choice between rule-changing and respect for constitutional norms

Victor Davis Hanson // Bozeman Daily Chronicle

In traditional presidential campaigns, the two major parties offer contrasting ideas and policies. The Democratic and Republican candidates barnstorm the nation to make their cases.

Not this year.

Democratic nominee Joe Biden is more or less a virtual candidate, mostly communicating from home via Zoom. He offers few detailed alternatives to the first four years of the Trump administration.

Instead, Biden is running on the idea that Donald Trump caused the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting economic recession, and that he’s responsible for violence in the streets.

But Biden rarely offers contrasting visions of what he would have done differently than the Trump administration — or, for that matter, major European countries that are now in worse economic shape and fighting another coronavirus spike.

Read the full article here

Dr. Victor Davis Hanson on Election 2020 & COVID

Interview with Victor Davis Hanson: “Democrats want to recalibrate America”

Four years ago, then-candidate Donald Trump promised an end to neo-con adventurism in the Middle East and to shift greater global responsibility to America’s NATO allies. Supporters and critics alike agree that, as president, Trump has followed through. Arguably, his “America first” strategy has brought greater stability even as it confounds the Beltway commentariat.

At home, however, America has never seemed more dived. Historian Victor Davis Hanson places the blame on Trump’s domestic enemies: “They tried to strangle his infancy in the cradle”. 

If Trump campaigns for the forgotten man, Hanson tells his story. Trump is their hero, Hanson their scribe. And unlike many of his academic peers, the classicist and military historian eschews the ivory tower, instead living close to the land and the people whose lives he chronicles.

When he’s not on tour selling his latest tome, the 67-year-old California native can be found on his grandmother’s farm in Selma, California. No mere gentleman farmer, he rises before dawn to cultivate his vines. He drives his pickup truck to school where he teaches immigrants and working-class students Greek and Latin. Back home on his farm, at the end of his day, Hanson locks himself in his study to write bestselling volumes on war and peace.

Should former Vice President Joe Biden and the Democratic Party sweep the elections next Tuesday, Hanson believes dire consequences await. He warns that Democrats “want to recalibrate America so that someone like Donald Trump can never be elected again.”

Read the full transcript here

Trumpism: Then, Now—and in the Future?

Victor Davis Hanson // American Greatness

What was, is, and will be the Trump agenda? 

Against all odds, what elected Trump in 2016 was a recalibration of American foreign and domestic policy—and the art of politicking itself.

Doctrine and Policy

In foreign affairs, the United States would no longer adhere to every aspect of the 75-year-old postwar order it created—given the world now bore little resemblance to the world of 1945. 

Prior bipartisan foreign policy had often ossified to the point of enhancing the power of our enemies, weakening our complacent friends, and terribly damaging our own power. When Trump entered office, ISIS was proving that it was hardly a “JV” organization. North Korea was recklessly testing missiles and bragging of its nuclear-tipped rockets pointed at our West Coast. 

Israel and the moderate Arab regimes were ostracized as part of the insane Obama empowerment of theocratic Iran and its quest for a radical crescent encompassing Syria, Lebanon, Hezbollah, and Hamas.

Read the full article here

Trump Won the Debate—But Won Bigly the Post-Debate

Victor Davis Hanson // National Review

There was a low bar for Joe Biden in the first debate, given his cognitive challenges. Because he exceeded that pessimism, he won momentum. 

In opposite fashion, there was similarly an expectation that a disruptive Donald Trump would turn off the audience by the sort of interruptions and bullying that characterized the first debate. 

He did not do that. He instead let a cocky Biden sound off, and thus more or less tie himself into knots on a host of topics, but most critically on gas and oil. So likewise Trump will gain momentum by exceeding those prognoses. 

But far more importantly, the back-and-forth repartee will not matter other than Trump went toe to toe, but in a tough, dignified manner and beat Biden on points. Biden did not go blank — although he seemed to come close, often especially in the last 20 minutes. Had the debate gone another 30 minutes, his occasional lapses could have become chronic.

Read the full article here

The Radio Free Hillsdale Hour: Victor Davis Hanson, Ben Beier, & Anthony Swinehart

Strategika #68: Crisis in the Eastern Mediterranean

Turkey In The Eastern Mediterranean Crisis

Please read a new essay by my colleague, Soner Cagaptay in Strategika.

Three wars that Turkey is currently involved in, namely in Syria, Libya, and the South Caucasus, suggest that Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s foreign policy has settled into a new phase. Erdoğan is building a “mini Empire” by—often—simultaneously fighting and power- brokering with his Russian homologue, and to this end the Eastern Mediterranean provides ample opportunities for him.

Read the full article here.

It’s Not The Energy, Stupid!

Please read a new essay by my colleague, Zafiris Rossidis in Strategika.

In 2020, with the strong presence of American, Russian, French, Greek, Turkish, Egyptian, Italian, and even German warships, the Eastern Mediterranean has become one of the most militarized seas in the world.

Read the full article here.

Crisis In The Eastern Mediterranean

Please read a new essay by my colleagues, Barry Strauss in Strategika.

The Eastern Mediterranean, like the Middle East, is a tough neighborhood. The current standoff over natural gas rights among Greece, Turkey, and their respective allies is only the latest example.

Read the full article here.

The Unapologetic Bias of the American Left

Victor Davis Hanson // American Greatness

Some yearn for the ancient monopolistic days of network news, the adolescent years of public radio and TV, and the still reputable New York Times—when once upon a time the Left at least tried to mask their progressivism in sober and judicious liberal façades. 

An avuncular Walter Cronkite, John Chancellor, Jim Lehrer, or Abe Rosenthal at least went through the motions of reporting news that was awkward or even embarrassing to the Left. Their agenda was 1960s-vintage Great Society liberalism, seen as the natural evolution from the New Deal and post-war internationalism. Edward R. Murrow, the ACLU of old, and Free Speech Movement at Berkeley—these were their liberal referents. Those days are gone.

Yet even during the Obama years, when studies showed the president had received the most slanted media honeymoon in news history, overt media bias was, at least, as hotly denied as it intensified. There were still a few ossified, quarter-hearted efforts now and then to mention the IRS scandal, the surveillance of Associated Press reporters, the various scandals embroiling the Veterans Administration, General Service Administration, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, and the Secret Service. But even that thin pretense is over now, too.

Rejecting Objectivity 

What ended liberal dissimulation about slanted reporting is a new pride, or rather an arrogance, about bias itself. The new liberated defiance is something like, “We are biased. Damn proud of it. And what exactly do you plan on doing about it?”

Read the full article here

Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict adds to Putin’s headaches, West’s worries

An article by my Hoover colleague Dr. Paul Gregory in The Hill

The last thing Vladimir Putin needed is another hotspot in Russia’s “near abroad” — Russia’s term for the 14 republics that once were part of the old Soviet Union, along with the Russian Republic. 

In 2014, Putin boasted of an ambitious imperial restoration project; his plans included a “New Russia” encompassing parts of Ukraine and Belarus, along with a Eurasian Union (including, among others, Ukraine, Belarus and Kazakhstan) that eventually would grow to rival the European Union.

That was then. Now, Putin sees his vision fading as popular unrest and armed conflicts take hold in the former-USSR territories he had scheduled for restoration.

Putin’s vision of USSR restoration has suffered immense setbacks and continues to absorb damaging blows to his once-ambitious plans: The 2008 Five-Day War removed Georgia permanently from the Russian orbit. The 2014 annexation of Crimea and Russia’s occupation of Eastern Ukraine poisoned Russian-Ukrainian relations and finally established Ukraine as a nation independent of Russia.

Read the full article here

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