Former aide to challenge Ron Paul in GOP primary after 9/11 comments

Awesome. He has a long, lucrative career ahead of him giving lectures about the one-world government being organized by Ben Bernanke. Let’s see to it that it begins as soon as possible.

I am calling on Ron Paul to resign his seat, sooner rather than later. Otherwise Congressional District 14 voters from Victoria to Galveston will appear to be endorsing his treachorous, and near treasonous views on foreign policy.

I am sure I speak for many CD 14 voters, and certainly the vast majority of CD 14 Republicans, when I say, Ron Paul, it’s time for you to exit the stage…

I am this morning, declaring my candidacy for Congress in the GOP primaries against Ron Paul. If he does not resign his seat, and if another Republican candidate does not declare against him, I will run a balls-to-the-wall campaign for Congress in Texas CD 14.

I saw more than one person apologize for Paul’s remarks this morning on grounds that he wasn’t defending Al Qaeda’s motivations last night, merely stating them as they’ve been articulated by Bin Laden. Really? No moral benediction whatsoever, huh? Let’s check the transcript, right after the subject of 9/11 was introduced:

We don’t understand the irrationality of Middle Eastern politics. So right now we’re building an embassy in Iraq that’s bigger than the Vatican. We’re building 14 permanent bases. What would we say here if China was doing this in our country or in the Gulf of Mexico? We would be objecting. We need to look at what we do from the perspective of what would happen if somebody else did it to us. (Applause.)

He’s careful to preface that bolded part, you’ll note, with an obligatory nod to “irrationality,” yet somehow he ends up at a position which he doesn’t seem to think is so irrational. They simply did what we would have done, didn’t they? Then he goes on:

I’m suggesting that we listen to the people who attacked us and the reason they did it, and they are delighted that we’re over there because Osama bin Laden has said, “I am glad you’re over on our sand because we can target you so much easier.”

Jonah Goldberg deals with that argument:

Ron Paul anointed Osama bin Laden the authentic expression of the entire Middle East…

There are far, far, far more Arabs and other Muslims who did not become terrorists because of our actions in the Middle East. But their “perspective” accounts for nothing in Paul’s analysis. The upshot seems to be that our foreign policy must always be held hostage to whichever group of murderers decides to get pissed off at us.

Quite so. Jalal Talabani hasn’t hijacked any planes; why listen to him? And another good point:

If you actually listen to more authentic voices than bin Laden’s — both democratic activists and Islamist bad guys — you’ll find that one of the real reasons “they hate us” is that we support their corrupt rulers and dictators (in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and elsewhere). Ron Paul’s vision of foreign policy would do nothing to dissuade that impression, because he wants to be “friends” with everybody, starting with those very same dictators.

Yeah, that’s actually the Muslim Brotherhood’s main grievance with the United States. We’re keeping them out of power by propping up Mubarak’s secular dictatorship; the day he falls, the floodgates of democracy will open and the Islamic paradise can at last be founded in Cairo. What’s Captain Nonintervention’s solution to that dilemma? Do we back Mubarak and further antagonize the Islamists? Or do we pull the trap on him, let Egypt go fundie, and make “friends” with the not very libertarian shari’a-ist cretins who’ll take over, notwithstanding the implications their rise to power would have for another war with Israel and the implications that would have for a regional war? The truly amazing thing about Paul’s foreign policy, if you take it seriously, is that it has no moral component whatsoever. Presumably he would even have formalized relations with the Taliban prior to 9/11, lest we lose any “friends.” In fact, Jonah notes Paul’s reference after the debate to “bad policy over 50 years” that’s led to anti-Americanism, which Jonah takes to be a reference to the Cold War. Is it? He seemed to be talking about the Middle East at the time. Isn’t he referring to something else?

The most irritating thing, and the thing that earns Paul so much contempt from centrist conservatives, I think, is that he’s willing to challenge Bush’s assertions — to an O’Donnellesque extent — while taking Bin Laden’s entirely at face value. Osama says he’s aggrieved by the UN sanctions on Iraq? Well then it must be true. It can’t possibly be that, like so many other messianic lunatics with designs on power, he’s using a populist pretext to mask his own imperial ambitions, can it? Let’s ask Bernard Lewis:

In the Muslim perception there has been, since the time of the Prophet, an ongoing struggle between the two world religions, Christendom and Islam, for the privilege and opportunity to bring salvation to the rest of humankind, removing whatever obstacles there might be in their path. For a long time, the main enemy was seen, with some plausibility, as being the West, and some Muslims were, naturally enough, willing to accept what help they could get against that enemy. This explains the widespread support in the Arab countries and in some other places first for the Third Reich and, after its collapse, for the Soviet Union. These were the main enemies of the West, and therefore natural allies.

Now the situation had changed. The more immediate, more dangerous enemy was the Soviet Union, already ruling a number of Muslim countries, and daily increasing its influence and presence in others. It was therefore natural to seek and accept American help. As Osama bin Laden explained, in this final phase of the millennial struggle, the world of the unbelievers was divided between two superpowers. The first task was to deal with the more deadly and more dangerous of the two, the Soviet Union. After that, dealing with the pampered and degenerate Americans would be easy…

Stage One of the jihad was to drive the infidels from the lands of Islam; Stage Two–to bring the war into the enemy camp, and the attacks of 9/11 were clearly intended to be the opening salvo of this stage.

And indeed, just today, an Al Qaeda front group threatens to attack France for the interventionist sin of electing a leader not to AQ’s liking.

Exit question: Is Tony Blair the anti-Paul?