Category Archives: Reviews

Review:  David Horowitz, The Black Book of the American Left: Volume IV:  Islamo-Fascism and the War Against the Jews

In this spirited and savvy collection of recent essays and speeches, David Horowitz argues that progressives, that is, left of center politicians, journalists and intellectuals have contributed to “undermining the defense of Western civilization against the totalitarian forces determined to destroy it.” Specifically, the threat comes from “the holy war or jihad waged by totalitarian Islamists in their quest for a global empire.” (p.1) These essays, many of which are lectures at university campuses or reports about those lectures, will reinforce the views of those who already agree that “Western civilization” is a good thing, that Islamism is a form of totalitarianism and that its Jihad is quest for a “global empire.” They may not convince those who think Western civilization is another name for racism, imperialism and war, that totalitarianism is an ideological relic of the Cold War and that an otherwise peaceful and tolerant Islam has been “hijacked” by violent extremists who misconstrue its texts and their meanings. Yet they may strike a nerve with those liberals who think it is absurd to deny the clear links between Islamism and terror and who, especially after the murders in Paris in January, understand that Islamism is a threat to the liberal traditions of Western politics and culture.

This volume addresses a by now much discussed paradox of our political and intellectual life. In the immediate aftermath of the attacks of 9/11, the liberal intellectual Paul Berman in Terror and Liberalism made the compelling case that the Islamist ideology that inspired the Al Qaeda terrorists emerged from a profoundly reactionary set of ideas which had lineages to Nazism and fascism. In Germany, Matthias Kuentzel, in his Jihad and Jew-Hatred:  Nazism, Islamism and the Roots of 9/11 examined in more detail the illiberal views of the 9/11 terrorists as well as the political and ideological connections between Islamism and Nazism. A number of us historians have documented those connections. The irony of the years since 2001, and especially of the Obama years, is that, with some exceptions, much of the sharpest criticism of the reactionary nature of Islamism and defense of classically liberal values has not come from the historic home of anti-fascism among leftists and liberals. Rather, as the 55, mostly short essays in this collection indicate, that critique has migrated to centrists and conservatives or those who are now called conservatives.

“Islamophobia,” the longest essay in the collection is co-written with Robert Spencer, also importantly draws attention to the international connections of Islamist organizations in the United States. The authors write that “the purpose of inserting the term ‘phobia’ is to suggest that any fear associated with Islam is irrational” and thus to discredit arguments that suggest a connection between Islamism and terror as themselves forms of bigotry. Horowitz and Spencer connect this criticism of the concept to discussion of the organizational connections between the Muslim Brotherhood. In 2005, the FBI seized the Northern Virginia headquarters of the Holy Land Foundation, then the largest Islamic “charity” in the United States. In a trial in 2007 that led to the conviction of the Foundation’s leaders on charges of supporting a terrorist organization, the prosecution entered a seized a remarkable document entitled “An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Group in North America.”(18)  The group’s goal was the establishment of “an effective and stable Islamic Movement led by the Muslim Brotherhood, which adopts Muslim causes domestically and globally, and which works to expand the observant Muslim base, aims at directing and unifying Muslim’s efforts, presents Islam as a civilizational alternative, and supports the global Islam state wherever it is.”  Muslims, it continued “must understand their work in American is a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and Allah’s religion is made victorious over all other religions.” Horowitz and Spencer perform an important service in drawing attention to this document and to the political campaign that it has inspired.

The memo called for the creation of front organizations including the Muslim American Society, the Muslim Students Association, and the Islamic Society of North America, the Islamic Circle of North America, the Islamic Association for Palestine and the parent group of the Council on American-Islamic Relations or CAIR. Another front group identified in the Holy Land memo was the International Institute for Islamic Thought, said to have invented the term “Islamophobia.” Horowitz and Spencer’s discussion of CAIR’s “Islamophobia campaign” is particularly interesting. In the Holy Land case, the US Department of Justice named CAIR as an unindicted co-conspirator and produced evidence that it has received $500,000 dollars from the Holy Land Foundation to set itself up.  CAIR was created in 1994 as a spinoff of a Hamas front group, the Islamic Association for Palestine, a group that the US government shut down in 2005 for funding terrorism. CAIR has defined Islamophobia as “closed minded prejudice against or hatred of Islam and Muslims” and has described anti-terror measures adopted by the US government as forms of “prejudice” and “hatred.” The authors argue that the use of such terms has been an effective instrument in blunting or stifling criticism of Islamism.

On American university and college campuses, the Muslim Students Association and “Students for Justice in Palestine” have sponsored “Israel Apartheid Weeks.” In recent years, the MSA has been particularly active at the campuses of the University of California in Davis, Santa Barbara and Los Angeles in the anti-Islamophobia campaigns. Remarkably, such efforts have received support from coalitions of leftwing student groups active in student governments. The authors write that “perhaps the chief asset possessed by the jihadists is a coalition of non-Muslims-European and American progressives—who support the anti-Islamophobia campaign,” one that “had a venerable antecedent in the support that progressives provided to Soviet totalitarians during the Cold War.” (p.48) Again, the remarkable aspect of the current coalitions between Islamists and leftists was that these leftists were making common cause with organizations famous for anti-Semitism, subordination of women to second class status or worse and deep religious conviction, a set of beliefs at odds with some of the classic values of the radical left in the twentieth century. Then again, in view of the anti-Zionist campaigns of the Soviet Union and its allies during the Cold War and the hostility of the global radical left to Israel in recent decades, such “Red-Green” leftist-Islamist coalitions of recent years are not so surprising.

Horowitz sees a parallel between the “secular messianic movements like communism, socialism and progressivism” and the religious creeds they replaced. “It is not surprising therefore, that the chief sponsors of the blasphemy laws and the attitudes associated with them have been movements associated with the political left. It is no accident that the movement to outlaw Islamophobia should be deeply indebted to the secular left and its campaign to stigmatize its opponents by indiscriminately applying repugnant terms to them like ‘racist.’”  The invention and application of the concept of Islamophobia “is the first step in outlawing freedom of speech, and therefore freedom itself, in the name of religious tolerance.”(55)

The remainder of this volume elaborates on these themes with twenty essays on Islamo-fascism, thirteen on the Middle East Conflict and eleven on “the Campus War against the Jews.” Horowitz’ reports on his many speeches at various campuses where some of the above mentioned Islamic organizations turn up to protest. There the front organizations of the Muslim Brotherhood, especially the Muslim Students Association, emerged to challenge his arguments about the links between Islamism and fascism. Two essays are particularly important—and depressing. In “Suicidal Jews” and “”Hillel”s Coalitions with Israel’s Enemies,” Horowitz describes instances in which liberal and left-leaning Jewish undergraduates turn their criticism towards him rather than towards the anti-Israeli activists on campus.

This fourth volume of Horowitz’s essays depicts the bizarre nature of our contemporary political culture in which leftists make common cause with Islamists, Israel is denounced as a racist entity while the anti-Semitism of the Muslim Brothers, Hamas and the government of Iran are non-issues for leftists, and the United States government refuses to state the obvious about the connection between Islamist ideology and the practice of terrorism. The defense of liberal principles has liberal advocates but as this valuable collection indicates the core of the defense has become a preoccupation of the center and right of American intellectual and political life. This volume is an important document of that endeavor.

Jeffrey Herf, Distinguished University Professor, Department of History, University of Maryland, College Park. His most recent book is Nazi Propaganda for the Arab World. His work in progress is entitled “At War with Israel: East Germany and the West German Radical Left, 1967-1989.”

Who Are Our Adversaries?

Explaining an Unusual Enterprise

by David Horowitz

I have just published the second in a projected nine-volume series of my collected writings called The Black Book of the American Left. The title pays homage to The Black Book of Communism, a celebrated European text documenting the crimes of the 20th century’s most notorious progressive experiment. While the original Black Book was a one-volume affair, the literary project I have undertaken is so large as to make it unique in today’s publishing world. Outside the category of literary fiction, so far as I can tell there are no nine-volume series by living authors.

So what prompted me to undertake so unwieldy an enterprise, which involves editing a million and a half words and arranging them into themed volumes? The seemingly obvious answer — one my adversaries will certainly seize on — is writer’s vanity. Who would not want to see his words in print and between hard covers? The more the better. But if you take a moment to think about it, this is not an unambiguous advantage and therefore does not provide so obvious an answer.

Over the course of a lengthy career I have written roughly 20 full-length books, six or seven of which I consider my best work and the writing I would like others to know me by. But already the 20 volumes threaten to bury some of the better writing I have done and create problems for readers who are seeking to acquaint themselves with my ideas. Where to begin? What to leave out? And given that this is the case, why add nine more volumes, containing a million and a half words, and risk having potential readers throw up their hands and say, “This is too much for me to sort out.” So the question better asked is this: What would The Black Book of the American Left contain that would significantly add to the work I had already done? What would prompt others to read it, and justify the two years of labor that went into the making of it?

The answer is in the nature of its contents and — equally important — in concerns I have had about the way conservatives have understood the phenomenon it describes. Five years into the Obama administration, most conservatives have little idea of the depth of its malignancy, or the fact that it is the product of decades of development that has transformed the Democratic party and created, as is rapidly becoming apparent, not only America’s nightmare but the world’s as well.

A good place to begin this explanation is by reporting that some readers have remarked critically on the fact that the articles in these volumes, which span some 30 years, have already appeared in print and can be located by a diligent web search. Why then bother arranging them in a new subject order and collecting them in themed volumes with titles like My Life & TimesProgressives, The Great Betrayal (Iraq), Culture Wars, Progressive Racism, and The Left in the Universities?

The answer is that these are not articles written on random subjects that happened to catch my fancy. Nor were they written as intellectual exercises that set out to explore various aspects of current issues. They are dispatches from a war zone, written to identify the nature, agendas, and long-term goals of a political movement of historic proportions that is also global in scope. Written in the heat of battle, they are here arranged in chronological order as the events took place, in order to provide a running account of the war itself.

The nature of these conflicts as part of an ongoing war was, in my view, scarcely recognized by conservatives at the time, and has still not fully sunk in. Conservatives have rarely approached the individual conflicts with the seriousness they deserve, describing their adversaries as “liberals” — as if they subscribed to the principles of Lockean individualism, tolerance, and political compromise. Only with the advent of the Obama administration have some conservatives begun to connect the dots of origins and outcomes and to grasp the real nature of the national transformation that their adversaries intend.

It is for this conservative audience — a constituency on whom the American future depends — that I undertook to put together The Black Book of the American Left. It is first of all a narrative map of the battles fought over the last 40 years and — it must be said – lost, almost every one. The Black Book contains a record as complete as any likely to be written of the struggle to resist a Communist-inspired Left that was not defeated in the Cold War but took advantage of the Soviet defeat to enter the American mainstream and conquer it, until today its members occupy the White House.

It is an often overlooked but immensely significant fact that during the Cold War the vast majority of American progressives supported the Communist enemy, working as apologists, appeasers, and enablers for a global movement openly dedicated to the destruction of their country. At the time, the progressive movement was much smaller than it is now and was opposed by mainstream Democrats whom progressives referred to derisively as “Cold War Liberals.” In 1968, progressive activists staged a riot at the Democratic Party convention. The riot was overtly designed to destroy the electoral chances of Hubert Humphrey, regarded as the Cold War Liberal in Chief because of his support for the Vietnam War.

The Progressive Party, was formed in 1948 to challenge the cold war liberalism of Harry Truman and was in fact controlled by the Communist Party. The so-called New Left that emerged in the Sixties did not represent a clean break with communism and was not, in fact, a “new” left but a continuation of the old. It developed a modernized, deceptive political rhetoric — calling itself “populist” and even “liberal” — but it was mobilized behind the same malicious anti-individualist, anti-capitalist, and anti-American agendas as the Communist movement from which it sprang.

After the convention riot of 1968, this neo-Communist Left marched off the streets and into the Democratic party, and over the next decades took commanding positions in the party’s congressional apparatus, and eventually its national leadership. As it acquired power, it gradually shifted its self- identification from “liberal” to the bolder “progressive,” a designation shared by most leaders of the Democratic Party today. The betrayal of the Vietnamese by the “Watergate” Democrats, the appeasement of Latin American Communists (now firmly entrenched throughout the hemisphere and allied with our enemy Iran), the betrayal of the Iraqis and the sabotage of the war on terror, the traducing of the civil-rights movement and its transformation into a mob led by the racial extortionists Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton (the latter now the president’s chief adviser on race), the subversion of the modern research university and the conversion of its liberal-arts divisions into doctrinal institutes for training American youth in the radical party line known as political correctness, the rise of a campus fascism aligned with Islamic Jew haters and genocidal terrorists, the political undermining of the public-health system during the AIDS epidemic which led to half a million avoidable deaths — all these were crucial battles lost during the 40 years that preceded the White House reign of Barack Obama. All are documented in the pages of these volumes in week-by-week accounts of the arguments and conflicts that accompanied them.

The narrative of these developments is the substance of The Black Book of the American Left. Its fruit is an understanding that the movement now in motion to dismantle the American system, and bring this country to its knees, is no overnight phenomenon and is not the result of misguided idealisms or misunderstandings that can be easily repaired. The adversary cannot be dissuaded, because what drives him is a religious mission on which his identity and quest for a meaningful life depend. He can be stopped only by a political counterforce that is determined and organized, and — most importantly — that understands the gravity of the threat it faces.

How far are conservatives from understanding the gravity of the situation they are in? This question was brought home to me the other day as I watched Senator Tom Coburn, easily one of the most decent men in Washington, being interrogated by an unusually frustrated Brian Lamb about his friendship with Barack Obama. That Senator Coburn, a staunch conservative, would relate to the president on a personal level despite their political differences did not bother me. What bothered me was how profoundly the senator misread Obama, how he failed to understand the malice behind either his mendacity or his systematic efforts to dismantle America’s constitutional system and disarm us before our enemies. “He has good intentions,” Coburn assured the exasperated Lamb.

In this exchange, Senator Coburn was the picture of American innocence, unable to connect the contempt Obama has shown for the American people and their civil order with his readiness to betray America’s troops in the field and its interests abroad, with his embrace of the Muslim Brotherhood and appeasement of Iranian Hitlerites, with his supine posture toward Russian aggression in the heart of Europe. Conservatives’ conflict with Obama is not about different understandings of the facts among colleagues guided by good intentions.

I wanted to ask Coburn whether he thinks the sadistic murderer Fidel Castro, who has turned his nation into an island prison, is also possessed of good intentions and human graces. The director Steven Spielberg, himself a good man, called the eight hours he spent with Castro “the greatest day of my life.” Does this flapdoodle have any real-world significance when it comes to dealing with the radical Left? Unless they are Islamic fanatics, the zealots of the Left do not usually come at you as fire-breathing demons. They come to help. Do you think for a moment that Castro could carry on those nine-hour speeches about Cuba’s glorious socialist achievements if he did not at least half-believe his own fantasies? Obama and Castro are socialist missionaries. For that very reason, the evil they do far exceeds anything achievable by tinhorn tyrants. They are advocates of a cause that turns a blind eye toward the millions of corpses and the wrecked continents of the recent past while attacking the democratic foundations of what remains of a free-market, free-world community of nations, beginning with Israel and the United States. That is their evil and their crime: their will to do it all over again, as if the human calamities they inspired never took place.

The Black Book of the American Left is a look into the psyche of these missionaries through the battles they have waged over the last 40 years — battles that have brought them into the command structures of the American leviathan. It provides a picture of how they think and it analyzes the why; it draws aside the veil of “good intentions” to reveal the malice underneath. That is its utility, and the main reason I am putting these volumes together. But it would not be candid of me if I did not mention another. By way of explication, I will quote from the general introduction to the work:

“It is almost a certainty that no other “book” will be written like this one, since it can only have been the work of someone born into the Left and condemned Ahab-like to pursue it in an attempt to comprehend it. Yet it is not simply a project of monomania, as my adversaries will suggest, but of discovery — an attempt not only to understand a movement but to explore its roots in individual lives, including my own. While I hope this book may be useful to those fighting to defend individual freedom and free markets, I do not deceive myself into believing that I have finally set the harpoon into the leviathan, a feat that is ultimately not possible. Progressivism is fundamentally a religious faith, which meets the same eternal human needs as traditional faiths, and for that reason will be with us always. In the last analysis, the progressive faith is a Gnosticism that can only be held at bay but never finally beaten back to earth.”

Rebel With a Better Cause – By John Fonte

[To order The Black Book of the American Left: Volume 1 – My Life and Times, click hereVolume 2: The Progressivesclick here.]

This article is reprinted from Claremont Review of Books.

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A review of The Black Book of the American Left: The Collected Conservative Writings of David Horowitz, by David Horowitz

Volume I: My Life and Times

Volume II: Progressives

Does any conservative understand the American Left better than David Horowitz? A “red-diaper” baby raised by Communist parents, Horowitz was a founding father of the New Left by virtue of being co-editor (with Peter Collier) of its flagship journal, Ramparts. The Left’s indifference to Communist bloodbaths in Vietnam and Cambodia, and to Black Panther murders at home, led Collier and Horowitz to reconsider, embrace anti-Communism, and support President Ronald Reagan’s Central American policy. Their “Second Thoughts” project of 1987, a venue for other ex-leftists to criticize their old politics and its new champions, bequeathed Destructive Generation (1989) by Collier and Horowitz, and the establishment of the Center for the Study of Popular Culture. After Collier became founding editor of Encounter Books, the Center was renamed the David Horowitz Freedom Center, whose activities include the online FrontPage Magazine.

Readers who seek a moving story of the intertwined unfolding of a life and a political sensibility should read Horowitz’s autobiographical Radical Son: A Generational Odyssey (1997). The author’s “fearless capacity for self-examination,” Christopher Caldwell wrote when it was published, allowed Horowitz “to forge a new career as the kind of person his parents had no doubt warned him against.” Now, The Black Book of the American Left offers, as the subtitle says, the Collected Conservative Writings of David Horowitz—articles, essays, and speeches on a wide range of political figures and topics, gathered together for the first time. Projected to fill ten volumes, two have been published: My Life and Times, and Progressives. Volume III, on America’s response to 9/11 and jihad, is scheduled for publication later this year. Continue reading Rebel With a Better Cause – By John Fonte

Review: The Black Book of the American Left, Volume II by Janice Flamengo, PJ Media

The first volume of David Horowitz’s nine-volume The Black Book of the American Left focused on the author’s personal journey out of the leftist faith and its community of adherents — a courageous, disorienting rejection of all he had once believed — and into a reasoned and pragmatic conservatism that has been his creed ever since. Analyzing the various forms of delusion, bad faith, and pathological self-hatred that leftism inspires and demands, the essays in that volume chronicled Horowitz’s decades-long crusade to unmask progressive fantasies to reveal their devastating real-world consequences. In documenting the monumental failures of leftist regimes and the illogic of leftist ideology, Horowitz’s writings have made a vital contribution to the conservative movement in America.

In the second volume of his oeuvre, Horowitz turns his attention to individual progressive, showcasing the destructive extremism and Communist roots of their so-called liberal beliefs (actually the opposite of “liberal” in both philosophy and political tactics) and revealing the deep anti-Americanism that has become a part of the Democratic agenda. Here, Horowitz documents the historical falsifications and distortions of purpose necessary to the left’s salvationist program. In essay after essay, his acute understanding of the leftist passions he once shared is arrestingly on display. Continue reading Review: The Black Book of the American Left, Volume II by Janice Flamengo, PJ Media

On Horowitz’s New Book: Progressives – Paul Hollander

I.

David Horowitz is one of the rare human beings, and handful of former Sixties radicals, who made an unequivocal break with his longstanding political beliefs and commitments. Unlike many former radicals who renounced some of the questionable means used in the pursuit of their political agenda but refused to distance themselves from the purported ideals, Horowitz rejected the ideals as well. In the meantime, most of the former Sixties radicals, or even some Sixties moderates, have continued to cling nostalgically to what they consider to be admirable goals embedded in their youthful idealism and legitimated by the irresistible appeal of good intentions.

Horowitz can claim further distinction on account of being an exceptionally knowledgeable guide to all varieties of the American left and his understanding of these movements and the mentalities of their adherents. It helps that he has been familiar with many individuals representing or associated with the same movements. Also unusual, even among the fully disillusioned, that ever since his break with his political past, Horowitz has devoted his life to renouncing and combating his former political illusions, commitments and affiliations. In doing so he was willing to risk the over-politicization of his own life, and the weakening of the boundaries between the personal and the political realm. He has also made it easier for his many critics to claim that his crusading spirit bears some resemblance to those of his former comrades and adversaries.

For reasons not obvious, more of the former supporters of the Soviet Union (of The God That Failed variety) and of Western communist movements of the past were willing and able to reexamine and publicly discard their previous convictions and illusions than those of the Sixties generation. The latter, while distancing themselves from the Soviet model, idealized Third World communist systems such as those of China, Cuba and North Vietnam. I am not sure why that has been the case but I surmise that since the Sixties radicals had more widespread and enduring subcultural or group support (especially on the campuses) than their predecessors of the 1930s, they had a lesser need to reexamine and reevaluate their beliefs. It is always easier to persist in convictions, even in wrongheaded ones, if they are widely shared. Moreover, the agenda of the Sixties radicals was broader, encompassing not only sympathy for the idealized and misperceived communist systems noted above, but also popular domestic causes such as the anti-Vietnam war protest, civil rights and women’s liberation. The presence of this large, supportive, quasi-communal subculture made it easier to squelch the impulse to engage in political soul-searching or “second thoughts.” As Horowitz puts it,

[T]he secret of the left’s longevity, its ability to withstand the discrediting of its idea, to ignore the millions of its victims, and thus to renew itself in the next generation…is the creation of a culture…and of a living community that perpetuates its myths…In 2003, the Rosenberg grandchildren can take pride in their heritage a being the heirs of Communists and spies, and receive encouragement and praise from “an international community of support.” [267-268]

Continue reading On Horowitz’s New Book: Progressives – Paul Hollander

The Black Book of the American Left: Volume 2 — The Progressives – Barbara Kay

The Black Book of the American Left, Volume I: My Life and Times dwelt heavily on author David Horowitz’s personal journey from the hard left as a “red diaper” child of Communists to leadership in the New Left movement. We followed the anguished transitional trajectory that began with Horowitz’s reflections on the New Left’s role in America’s Vietnam defeat, and his visceral recoil from the criminal excesses of the Black Panther Party. These attacks on his settled convictions provoked profound self-interrogation, leading to an intellectual pivot away from the theories, antipathies and loyalties that had for so long defined his identity.

Volume II surveys the wreckage blotting the landscape of “progressivism,” a barrier island to Communism’s landmass. Here we find the unbroken bridge linking Communism to the received wisdom of the vast majority of academics in the West, who download them into vulnerable students en masse. The Marxist vision that sustained Stalin’s supporters in the 1940s and 1950s is alive and well in the post-colonialist and identity obsessions of postmodern theorists. Utopians then, utopians still, Horowitz finds their vision of social justice is still attended by the same suppression of “incorrect” thought and speech, the same self-righteousness, the same illiberalism in dealing with critics and apostates that were – are – the hallmarks of Communism.

Progressives may refer to themselves as “liberals,” but that is a misnomer Horowitz strenuously proscribes. Classical liberalism in our culture was largely vanquished in the counter-cultural revolution, though the odd grey-haired academic adherent pops into view now and then, seeming baffled by what has become of the noble assumptions of his youth.  Referring to leftists as liberals launders their intellectual and political lineage. Real liberals – especially liberal scholars – don’t excommunicate their peers for deviating from the party line. Communists did; New Leftists did (as Horowitz learned first hand when he left the movement and his entire circle of “friends” renounced him); and progressives still do.

Take the case of feminist scholar Aileen Kraditor, Professor Emerita of History at Boston University. Aileen who? Precisely Horowitz’s point.  Even though much of my journalistic effort is spent in exposing the misandry and other cultural crimes springing directly from feminist theories, I had never heard of Aileen Kraditor prior to seeing her name in Volume I of The Black Book (she is mentioned again in Volume II).

According to Horowitz, Kraditor, a feminist historian in good – even iconic – standing during the years she was a card-carrying Communist,  was virtually “disappeared” from the feminist movement when she renounced Communism. Horowitz provided a mere thumbnail sketch, praising her work, and explaining why this once-admired scholar of the suffragette movement now languishes in near-obscurity, but it was enough to pique my curiosity.

Continue reading The Black Book of the American Left: Volume 2 — The Progressives – Barbara Kay

David Horowitz Exposes Why Progressives Must Lie: Spyridon Mitsotakis

Originally published at www.breitbart.com.

In his book Disinformation, Ion Mihai Pacepa, the highest-ranking Soviet Bloc official ever to defect to the United States, describes the Soviet intelligence practice called “framing” – changing someone’s or something’s past to suit present political needs.

The Soviets perfected this into a science. Jamie Glazov, editor of FrontPageMag.com, detailed a personal encounter with this Marxist science when he described a 1971 document KGB chairman Yuri Andropov wrote about Jamie’s father, Soviet dissident Yuri Glazov:

Yuri Andropov is discussing the operation to put the drugs and the documents into the apartment and then five pages later is discussing my father being a drug trafficker and a spy. You see, there’s a self-intoxication here. You create the lie and then somewhere along the process you begin to believe that lie that you yourself have created, and this is a very fascinating phenomenon.

Jamie’s boss, David Horowitz, lived this lie for many years. He knows that without lies, the ideology of the left would cease to exist. This is the central truth Horowitz relentlessly reinforces in Progressives, Volume II of The Black Book of the American Left.

Continue reading David Horowitz Exposes Why Progressives Must Lie: Spyridon Mitsotakis

WSJ: Notable and Quotable – “What it Means to be a Conservative”

Reposted from WSJ.com

Jan. 13, 2014 7:36 p.m. ET

From “The Black Book of the American Left” (2013), by David Horowitz:

To be a conservative is first to understand that there is no solution to the dilemmas of the human condition. Second, it is to understand that to escape these dilemmas, human beings will inevitably embark on desperate quests for redemptions in this life. These redemptions, in turn, will require holy wars to purge the world of demons—of those who do not share their faith, and who stand in their way. In this regard, totalitarian Islam is really no different in its heart from totalitarian socialism or progressivism, even though the latter are secular and the former is pursued in the name of a vengeful and malignant God. Both seek to cleanse mankind of its irreparable imperfections.

To remain free beings, we are continually forced to defend ourselves and our breathing space, against the efforts of the redeemers to perfect us—against the armies of the saints who are determined to make the world a better place than it can ever be. That is how I see the political wars we face, and why they will never end.

The Weekly Standard: “A Good Fight”

Reposted from http://www.weeklystandard.com/articles/good-fight_771511.html

David Horowitz is a political thinker and cultural critic who enjoys challenging leftist shibboleths. His main contribution to contemporary political discourse is a passionate commitment to an outspoken, unabashed, myth-breaking version of conservatism. If communism was the triumph of mendaciousness, he argues in this poignant collection of writings, conservatism cannot accept the proliferation of self-serving legends and half-truths.

This makes his public interventions refreshingly unpredictable, iconoclastic, and engaging. He is a former insider, and his views have the veracity of the firsthand witness. Horowitz knows better than anybody else the hypocrisies of the left, the unacknowledged skeletons in its closet, and its fear to come to terms with past ignominies. He is an apostate who sees no reason to mince his words to please the religion of political and historical correctness. His masters are other critics of totalitarian delusions, from George Orwell to Leszek Kolakowski; in fact, Horowitz’s awakening from his leftist dreams was decisively catalyzed by the illuminating effect of Kolakowski’s devastating critique of socialist ideas. Unlike his former comrades, however, Horowitz believes in the healing value of second thoughts.

Vilified by enemies as a right-wing crusader, Horowitz is, in fact, a lucid thinker for whom ideas matter and words have consequences. His break with the left in the late 1970s was a response to what he perceived to be its rampant sense of self-righteousness, combined with its readiness to endorse obsolete and pernicious utopian ideals. Born to a Communist family in Queens, Horowitz flirted with the Leninist creed as a teenager but found out early that the Communist sect was insufferably obtuse and irretrievably sclerotic. He attended Columbia, where he discovered Western Marxism and other non-Bolshevik revolutionary doctrines. From the very beginning, he had an appetite for heresy.

He joined the emerging New Left and went to England, where he became a disciple and close associate of the socialist historian Isaac Deutscher, author of once-celebrated biographies of Stalin and Trotsky. Thanks to Deutscher, Horowitz met other British leftists, including the sociologist Ralph Miliband (father of the current leader of the Labour party). Consumed by revolutionary pathos, he wrote books, pamphlets, and manifestoes, denounced Western imperialism, and condemned the Vietnam war.

Once back in the United States, he became the editor, with Peter Collier, of Ramparts, the New Left’s most influential publication. In later books, Horowitz engages in soul-searching analyses of his attraction to the extreme radicalism of the Black Panthers and other far-left groups. Under tragic circumstances—a friend of his was murdered by the Panthers—he discovered that these celebrated antiestablishment fighters were fundamentally sociopaths. What followed was an itinerary of self-scrutiny, self-understanding, and moral epiphany. He reinvented himself as an anti-Marxist, antitotalitarian, anti-utopian thinker.

Obviously, David Horowitz is not the first to have deplored the spellbinding effects of what Raymond Aron called the opium of the intellectuals. Before him, social and cultural critics (Irving Kristol, Norman Podhoretz, Nathan Glazer, to name only the most famous ones) took the same path; Bertolt Brecht’s Marxist mentor, Karl Korsch, broke with his revolutionary past in the 1950s. Even Max Horkheimer, one of the Frankfurt School’s luminaries, ended as a conservative thinker. As Ignazio Silone, himself a former Leninist, put it: The ultimate struggle would be between Communists and ex-Communists.

In Horowitz’s case, however, it is a struggle waged by an ex-leftist ideologue against political mythologies that have made whole generations run amok. Like Kolakowski and Václav Havel, Horowitz identifies ideological blindness as the source of radical zealotry. He knows that ideologies are coercive structures with immense enthralling effects—indeed, what Kenneth Minogue called “alien powers.” Putting together his fervid writings is, for him, a duty of conscience. He does not claim to be nonpartisan and proudly recognizes his attachment to a conservative vision of politics. But he is a pluralist: He refuses the idea of infallible ideological revelation, admits that human beings can err, and invites his readers to exercise their critical faculties. He does not pontificate.

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WND: “A Life Transformed”

Reprinted from WND.com.

David Horowitz’s “The Black Book of the American Left: Collected Conservative Writings” should be read by every American who loves his country. This book is a unique wake-up call to the truth that America is being infected by the bubonic plague of Marxism, which once contaminated the author himself.

In the 1970s, David climbed to the very top of the American leftist movements. Later he understood that Marxism was a lie – the first step toward stealing and killing – and after that he dedicated the rest of his life to warning others that Marxism was endangering American freedom and democracy. A Rasmussen Reports poll shows, indeed, that nowonly 53 percent of Americans prefer capitalism to socialism.

One of the most popular night clubs in New York City is the Soviet-themed KGB Bar. The place, adorned with the Soviet flag and a picture of “Comrade Lenin,” is jammed by a new generation of Marxist writers who read from their work. Just weeks ago this giant city overwhelmingly elected (73 percent of the votes) an openly Marxist mayor, and Seattle got a new council member who proudly stated that she wore “the badge of socialist with honor.” Russia’s post-Soviet newspaper Pravda, which knew that socialism was just a smiling mask for Marxism, chafed: “It must be said that like the breaking of a great dam, the American descent into Marxism is happening with breathtaking speed, against the backdrop of a passive, hapless sheeple, excuse me dear reader, I meant people.”

America is still not really aware that Marxism is infecting the country because our main media have gone to great lengths to hide this truism, and because neither the Republican Party nor the tea party has called attention to the looming dangers of Marxism. Our main media are also deep-sixing the fact that the only thing Marxism ever left behind it is countries that ended up looking like trailer camps hit by a hurricane, and Marxist leaders roasting in Dante’s Inferno – all of them, from Trotsky to Stalin, from Khrushchev to Brezhnev, from Tito to Enver Hoxha, along with Mátyás Rakosi, Sékou Touré, Nyeree, Ceausescu and Hugo Chavez.

David Horowitz was born into a family of devoted Marxists, had Marxism in his blood and pursued a successful career as a Marxist activist, writer and journalist. In 1974, some of his Marxist comrades – leaders of the Black Panther Party – murdered a bookkeeper whom David had recruited to keep the accounts of a Panther school he had helped create. That horrible crime hit home and persuaded David to forsake his highly successful leftist career and to move over onto the other side of America’s political barricade.

The David Horowitz Freedom Center and its FrontPage Magazine, created by David in 1988, marked the beginning of his anti-Marxist crusade, which has never stopped. His book “The Professors: The 101 Most Dangerous Academics in America” (2006) and his Academic Bill of Rights (ABR) marked another milestone in his life: the beginning of his still-vigorous campaign against Marxist indoctrination at American universities. (Full disclosure: Although I have never met David, I do collaborate with his FrontPage Magazine, and I have repeatedly expressed my admiration for his break with Marxism. David had also publicly praised my split with communism.)

In the preface to “The Black Book of the American Left,” the first of a nine-volume memoir, David Horowitz wrote that “for better or worse, I have been condemned to spend the rest of my days” fighting Marxism, “from which I have separated myself.” In May 1989, he and two other former prominent Marxists, Ronald Radosh and Peter Collier, went to Poland to attend a conference calling for the end of Communism. There, David told the Polish dissidents: “For myself, my family tradition of socialist dreams is over. Socialism is no longer a dream of a revolutionary future. It is only a nightmare of the past. But for you, the nightmare is not a dream. It is a reality that it is still happening. My dream for the people of socialist Poland is that someday you will wake up from your nightmare and be free.” A few months later, the Roundtable talks between the Polish government and the Solidarity-led Polish dissidents led to the first semi-free elections in the Soviet bloc.

On Nov. 9, 1989, when I watched on television as the Berlin Wall was being torn down, my eyes were misty. I was so incredibly proud to be an American. The whole world was expressing its gratitude to the United States for its 45 years of successful Cold War against the Soviet evil. “Communism is dead!” I heard people shout. Indeed, Communism was dead as a form of government. But it soon proved that Marxism, which had just celebrated its 141st birthday, had survived.

French philosopher Jacques Derrida, who once claimed he had broken with Marxism but confessed to still being choked with emotion whenever he heard the Internationale, reminded us that the first noun in Marx’s “Communist Manifesto” is specter: “A specter is haunting Europe, the specter of Communism.” According to Derrida, Marx began “The Communist Manifesto” with specterbecause a specter never dies. David Horowitz concurred. “After Stalin’s death,” he writes in his memoirs, his parents – who had dedicated their whole lives to Marxism – learned that “they served a gang of cynical despots who had slaughtered more peasants, caused more hunger and human misery, and killed more leftists like themselves than all the capitalist governments since the beginning of time. … I was 17 at that time, and at the funeral of the Old Left I swore to myself I would not repeat my parent’s fate. … But my youth prevented me from comprehending what the catastrophe had revealed. I continued my fantasy of the socialist future. When a New Left began to emerge a few years later, I was ready to believe that it was a fresh beginning and eager to assist at its birth.”

David Horowitz now documents that a new generation of Americans, one that is not being taught history anymore and knows little if anything about our country’s long fight against Marxism, is giving this heresy – which killed over 90 million people – another lease on life. In 2008, the Democratic Party portrayed the United States as a “decaying, racist, capitalist realm,” unable to provide medical care for the poor, to rebuild her “crumbling schools,” or to replace the “shuttered mills that once provided a decent life for men and women of every race,” and it pledged to change it by drastically increasing taxes on the American rich, American businesses and their owners, in order to finance programs for the poor. This is Marxism at its best. In “The Communist Manifesto,” Marx painted capitalism as “a decaying, racist realm,” and pledged to eradicate it by advocating 10 “despotic inroads on the rights of property,” which became known as the “Ten Planks of the Communist Manifesto.” Among them: a heavy progressive or graduated income tax; abolition of all rights of inheritance; abolition of property.

If you know the “Manifesto,” as David does, you will think Marx himself wrote the Democratic Party’s economic program, which contains all of the above planks of Marxism. If you don’t know the “Manifesto,” glance through “The Black Book of the American Left.” Young people, as David was when he ignored Stalin’s unprecedented crimes, believe in free lunches. No wonder that during the 2008 election campaign, the U.S. Democratic Party easily filled entire stadiums with young people who demanded that the wealth of the United States be redistributed. Some of those electoral gatherings looked to me like Ceausescu’s revival meetings – over 80,000 young people were gathered in front of the now-famous Greek temple resembling the White House that had been erected in Denver, to demand that America’s wealth be redistributed. The Democratic Party won the White House and both chambers of the U.S. Congress.

People have come to look kindly upon the “redistribution of wealth,” but David Horowitz convincingly demonstrates that this is the quintessence of Marxism, and that Marxism always ended in economic collapse. I concur. “Stealing from capitalism is moral, Comrades,” I heard Khrushchev say during the 1959 “six-day vacation” he spent in Romania. “Don’t raise your eyebrows, Comrades. I intentionally used the word steal. Stealing from our enemy is moral, Comrades.” “Stealing from capitalists is a Marxist duty,” Romania’s president, Nicolae Ceausescu, sermonized during the years I was his national security adviser. “Capitalists are the mortal enemies of Marxism,” I heard Fidel Castro preach in 1972, when I spent a vacation in Cuba as guest of his brother, Raul. “Killing them is moral, comrades!”

In my other life I rose to the top of a Marxist entity – the Soviet empire – which was created by redistributing the wealth of its people, and I had to start my life from scratch, as David did, to escape its tyranny. Redistribution of wealth is disguised stealing – the next step toward killing – and stealing and killing became national policies on the day Soviet Marxism was born. Immediately after the revolution of November 1917, the Soviet Marxists confiscated the imperial family’s wealth, seized the land owned by the rich Russians, nationalized Russian industry and banking, and killed most of the property owners. In 1929, by forcing the peasants into collective farms, the Soviet Marxists stole away their land, along with their animals and agricultural tools. Within a few years, virtually the entire Soviet economy was running on stolen property. When people began protesting the theft, the Marxists transformed the Soviet Empire into a tyrannical police state. Over 20 million people were killed to keep that gulag empire quiet. In the long run, however, theft and crime do not pay even when they are committed by a superpower. The 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union is strong proof to that.

On Feb. 7, 2009, the cover of Newsweek magazine proclaimed: “We Are All Socialists Now.” That was also what Ceausescu’s newspaper Scînteia proclaimed when he changed Romania into a monument to Marxism. Two years after seizing power, the U.S. Democratic Party’s Marxism produced the same results as the Ceausescu’s Marxism did – at a U.S. scale. Over 14 million Americans lost their jobs, and 41.8 million people went on food stamps. GDP growth dipped from 3-4 percent to 1.6 percent. The national debt rose to an unprecedented $17 trillion, and it is projected to reach $18 trillion by 2019. Scînteia went bankrupt. Newsweek was sold for one dollar.

So, let call a spade a spade: it is Marxism we are talking about. Marxism in America!

“The Black Book of the American Left” could not have come to life at a better time. Understanding that Marxism is a lie, and that lying is the first step toward stealing and killing, is what America needs right now.

Lt. Gen Ion Mihai Pacepa is the highest-ranking Soviet bloc official ever to defect to the West. In 1989 Romanian president Nicolae Ceausescu was executed at the end of a trial whose main accusations came out of Pacepa’s book “Red Horizons,” republished in 27 countries. His latest book, “Disinformation,” co-authored with professor Ronald Rychlak, was published last June by WND.