Although I greatly admire Hitchen's writings on atheism, let's not forget what a horrendous ass-hat he really was when it came to the Iraq war, neoconism, and the deaths of civilians. Hitchens would never let anyone else slide (see Mother Theresa, Princess Diana) on their moral misgivings and hypocrisies just because they're dead. How do you reconcile celebrating him with these unforgivable lapses in moral judgement?

http://www.salon.com/2011/12/17/christohper_hitchens_and_the_protoc...

http://gawker.com/5868761/christopher-hitchens-unforgivable-mistake 

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Well, gee, it's a little too soon to pronounce a final judgement on the war, isn't it? Wait 5 or 10 years and a lasting verdict will come into focus. Right now, about all you can say is you disagree with him, not that history shows he was wrong.

Like Zhou Enlai answered when asked about what he thought of the significance of the French Revolution: "It's too soon to tell".

Yes, the French Revolution was horrific, and yet all modern democracies can consider themselves its progeny, n'est ce pas?

Weeeeelll.. I've always found it's significance to be a bit overrated. There always seems to be rather cataclysmic events whenever humanity enters a new age, whether it was the entering of the industrial era, in which the French Revolution takes place, or the entry into the modern era on the eve of two world wars.

I personally prefer starting the analysis in 1848 to 1789 when drawing the outline of the world around us today. Your mileage may wary. :)

I pat your head. Your opinion is noted.

I'm also reminded of the fabulous castle Neuschwannstein in the Bavarian Alps. Built on the back of peasants by the mad kind Ludwig. He was a despot, but the result is a fairy tale castle open to the world. Was it worth it? If I had been a peasant back then, no. But for what we can enjoy today, yes!

Yes, the French Revolution was horrific, and yet all modern democracies can consider themselves its progeny, n'est ce pas?


Aside form the fact that the American experiment was in earnest prior to the French Revolution.

Your point is well taken, but don't forget that most subsequent democratic revolutions, and most major ones, were patterned more on the French violent overthrow than the American secession, making the French revolution the pattern-maker.

most subsequent democratic revolutions, and most major ones, were patterned more on the French violent overthrow than the American secession, making the French revolution the pattern-maker.

I honestly don't know if that is the case or not.  I'm inclined to think that perhaps something inbetween the two would make more sense.  Surely, the notoriety of the French Revolution would be lessened if it had spawned other democratic movements that matched it in its brutality. Perhaps not. 

@ Mike

"He [Hitchens] also helped promote the most atrocious war crime of my lifetime."

I can try to understand your position on the Iraq war but my question would be how do you balance the genocide being committed by a ruthless dictator on his own people and the western world's decision not to become involved? Innocent people are dying, regardless. Should the Idi Amin's and Pol Pot's of the world be simply ignored? Perhaps the answer is not black and white.

Well, you know, there are these "No more war" people who basically want a static world. The oppressed to continue oppressed, the slaves to remain slaves, and the free to enjoy eternal freedom. War is hell. It always has been, always will be. However, war remains a leading engine of change. Iraq has suffered, but it is better off than before.

As far as I know there was no great instance of genocide happening in Iraq at the time of the invasion. If you are referring to the gassing of the Kurds, the gas was supplied to Saddam by the very neocons that Hitchens embraced (Rumsfeld, Cheney, Wolfowitz) during the Reagan administration to be used against the Iranians (a point the Iranian gentleman who so vigorously defends Hichens should consider), The neocons fully embraced Hussein for years after the gassing. Genocide prevention was never cited by the administration as a reason for the invasion. 

I've never stated nor do I believe that there is never a reason to use military force. Attacking a sovereign nation that is not  posing an immediate threat has been considered a war crime since Hitler's invasion of Poland. This war was predicated on completely false reasoning and purposely manufactured intelligence. This was not just a crime against Iraq, but a crime against the American people. 

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