Friday, October 21, 2005

The cover story of a recent New Republic was a scathing review by David Rieff of Robert Kaplan's jingoistic new book, Imperial Grunts. (You can read the review here, via Ocnus.Net.) Rieff begins by saying this about another jingoistic writer of the past:

The French writer Jean Larteguy is largely forgotten now, but in the late 1950s and early 1960s his novels chronicling and celebrating the French paratroopers' fight against Vietnamese and Algerian revolutionaries, first for empire and then for a metropole stretching from Normandy to the Sahara, were immensely popular. These books, which were very skillfully written, had titles such as The Mercenaries, The Centurions, and The Praetorians, all evocative of the comparison that was central to Larteguy's vision: the French troops as latter-day Roman centurions holding the line against the barbarians...
It was hardly surprising that rootless Paris cosmopolitans, homosexuals, self-serving politicians, and traitorous leftists tended to be the villains in Larteguy's books, and far more so than the revolutionaries whom his commandos were fighting.

(Emphasis mine.)

That doesn't surprise me at all. As I've said in the past, the #1 enemy of modern American right-wingers is American liberalism, not any foreign foe. The American right rails against the Clintons and Ted Kennedy and leftist college professors and supporters of gay marriage far more than it does toward the perpetrators of the 9/11 atrocities. It's interesting to note that there's a precedent for this.

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