Just as Hollywood liberals have a sweet spot for Socialist dictators like Hugo Chavez, there are those on the far right who just can’t say no to a good Fascist. It’s been a while since they had one. Franco and Salazar have been dead since the 70’s. Milosevic was too buffoonish and brutal to be minimally attractive.
I had expected that Buchanan, Ron Paul and Rand Paul would back off the pro-Putin antics now that he’s set himself up as a solid enemy of the US. So far only Rand Paul is doing it. He’s late, unconvincing, and entirely off-key. Meanwhile Pat Buchanan is racing in the opposite direction, channeling Charles Lindbergh and Henry Ford in a spirited defense of not only Putin, but the central tenets of Fascism.
In the estimation of this writer, Vladimir Putin is a blood-and-soil, altar-and-throne ethnonationalist who sees himself as Protector of Russia and looks on Russians abroad the way Israelis look upon Jews abroad, as people whose security is his legitimate concern.
Hmm…I wonder, what’s another term for a “blood and soil ethno-nationalist?” Something shorter, pithier, and dressed in a finely pressed brown shirt. And of course, the not-too-subtle tie-in to Israel is a fine rhetorical touch. The man is a pro. Leni Reifenstahl would be proud. So would Brent Bozell.
Even more unfortunate than Buchanan’s poor choice of allies is the effect this is going to have on the last remaining bastion of intelligent conservative thought. Buchanan has a stranglehold on The American Conservative. The thoughtful and intelligent writers at TAG have been a welcome counter to the increasingly paranoid bluster that has infected every other outlet of conservative thought in recent years. Fascism has always been their dirty little weakness and Buchanan is driving them straight off that cliff.
Read more from Buchanan’s most recent pro-Putin apology here, if only as a warning.