What Ron Paul Thinks of America … It seemed improbable that the best-known American propagandist for our enemies could be near the top of the pack in the Iowa contest, but there it is. Ron Paul's supporters are sure of one thing: Their candidate has always been consistent—a point Dr. Paul himself has been making with increasing frequency. It's a thought that comes up with a certain inevitability now in those roundtables on the Republican field. One cable commentator genially instructed us last Friday, "You have to give Paul credit for sticking to his beliefs." He was speaking, it's hardly necessary to say, of a man who holds some noteworthy views in a candidate for the presidency of the United States. One who is the best-known of our homegrown propagandists for our chief enemies in the world. One who has made himself a leading spokesman for, and recycler of, the long and familiar litany of charges that point to the United States as a leading agent of evil and injustice, the militarist victimizer of millions who want only to live in peace. – WSJournal
Dominant Social Theme: Ron Paul's rhetoric is increasingly verging on the treasonous.
Free-Market Analysis: To us, this is a very disturbing article (see excerpt above). We have long admired Ms. Rabinowitz for her unrelenting reporting of phony child-abuse incarcerations throughout the United States back in the 1980s. For a while, rogue prosecutors were putting innocent people in jail based on the testimony of three-year-olds and Rabinowitz's high-profile reporting put a stop to some of the worst abuses.
She emerged from those reportorial episodes covered in glory and deservedly so. But what has she done now, especially with this article, to confuse her myriad supporters who once admired her bravery and clarity? Why does she come close – closer than any other major journalist in our view – to calling this gentle man, Ron Paul (left), a traitor?
As usual, it seems Dr. Paul's anti military-empire rhetoric draws the most ire. A prominent public person can almost guarantee attacks if he or she begins to criticize America's military-industrial complex. Especially if that person is perhaps a heartbeat away from winning the Republican nomination for the upcoming presidential election.
And thus it is. As Dr. Paul has experienced more success, he has come under withering fire. He has been attacked as a racist for material in some 25-year-old newsletters he neither wrote nor read and now, apparently, in Ms. Rabinowitz's eyes, he is verging on the traitorous, though he is a fine and admirable man. Here's some more from her article:
Hear Dr. Paul on the subject of the 9/11 terror attacks—an event, he assures his audiences, that took place only because of U.S. aggression and military actions. True, we've heard the assertions before. But rarely have we heard in any American political figure such exclusive concern for, and appreciation of, the motives of those who attacked us—and so resounding a silence about the suffering of those thousands that the perpetrators of 9/11 set out so deliberately to kill …
There can be no confusions about Dr. Paul's own comments about the U.S. After 9/11, he said to students in Iowa, there was "glee in the administration because now we can invade Iraq." It takes a profoundly envenomed mindset—one also deeply at odds with reality—to believe and to say publicly that the administration of this nation brought so low with grief and loss after the attack had reacted with glee.
There are, to be sure, a number of like-minded citizens around (see the 9/11 Truthers, whose opinions Dr. Paul has said he doesn't share). But we don't expect to find their views in people running for the nation's highest office.
This is astonishing rhetoric. Unpack it a bit (including our initial excerpt). "[His] silence about the suffering of those thousands that the perpetrators of 9/11 set out so deliberately to kill" … "Profoundly envenomed mindset" … "It seemed improbable that the best-known of American propagandists for our enemies could be near the top of the pack in the Iowa contest." …
It is in this last statement that Ms. Rabinowitz seems to come closest to accusing Ron Paul of outright treason. In a prime editorial slot at one of the world's most prestigious newspapers, a member of the board (her) calls a top US presidential candidate one of the "best-known propagandists for our enemies."
Is this a deliberate warning shot across the bow of Dr. Paul's increasingly successful campaign? It comes at a time when the Congress has passed a new "National Defense Authorization Act" (NDAA) that further empowers the executive branch to lock up US citizens for life at Guantanamo Bay or other military prisons – without charge and without trial.
Here's some language within the recently passed final NDAA text: "Section 1021: Authority of the Armed Forces to Detain Covered Persons… Congress affirms that the authority of the President … includes the authority for the Armed Forces … to detain covered persons," which includes "a person who was a part of or substantially supported al-Qaeda, the Taliban, or associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners, including any person who has committed a belligerent act …" and may detained "under the law of war without trial until the end of the hostilities authorized by the Authorization for Use of Military Force."
Ms. Rabinowitz states that Ron Paul is one of the US's "best known propagandists for our enemies." Now read her statement above in context of the NDAA language, where it is stated that someone may be subject to indefinite military detention if they are deemed a "covered person," solely at the president's discretion.
Pretty broad, eh ("committed a belligerent act")? As we pointed out in an article entitled "NDAA, Smell of Fear," those passing this legislation know full well what the ramifications are. It is fear, in our view, that motivates such radical legislation – fear that there will be an uprising against what is now occurring. Does Ms. Rabinowitz's vocabulary somehow reflect this fear?
Are the timing of the bill and Ms. Rabinowitz's editorial merely coincidental? We would argue that the bill is so vague that Ms. Rabinowitz could be seen as making a case for accusations against Dr. Paul even if she didn't mean to.
For the record, Ms. Rabinowitz may believe every word she says is patriotic and valid, but there are many even at the top levels of politics and the military who would disagree with her. They are on the record in myriad publications and posts.
There have been books written by people involved with the 9/11 Commission, for instance, that challenge many of its conclusions. And there are plenty of military members and international observers (and intelligence officers) who will maintain that by attacking so many countries in the Middle East and Africa the US has done more harm than good when it comes to self-defense.
The ongoing use of depleted uranium weapons is said to have poisoned hundreds of thousands, even millions – and regardless of Ms. Rabinowitz's defense of NATO action, the suffering from so many wars lasting so long is bound to be developing more (not fewer) enemies for the West, and the US, in particular. Ron Paul is not the only one making these points, and one could argue he is doing so as a patriotic American.
One of our articles (an interview, actually) pointed out that the US's military-industrial complex and CIA has illegally built a vast Gulag in Africa and the Middle East, using the existing facilities of various countries that then seemingly do Western Intel's bidding.
The interview pointed out that there were basically no al Qaeda members in these jails, from what we could see, but that putting so many falsely accused young men in prison for questioning was only contributing to anger and violence, to the point where such young people would be willing to turn themselves into bomb-carrying suicides. We were not making these statements to be "unpatriotic," but to point out how US military and intelligence policy has strayed from common sense in many ways.
The whole point of an independent media and political process is to ensure that all sides of an issue are debated and a consensus can be reached that citizens will support and contribute to. Societies are apt to fragment and degrade when such conversations are blocked.
Hopefully, Ms. Rabinowitz's language was chosen within the context of emotionality and not with a precision that would somehow imply that candidate Ron Paul's language was in some sense treasonous. Such a perspective would represent an alarming ratcheting up of a disturbing dialogue now taking place in the US – and Europe as well.