If Martin Cothran is to be believed (and naturally he isn’t):
The paleocons, almost as a matter of definition, opposed the war [in Iraq], and opposed it harshly.
I opposed the war in Iraq, and opposed it harshly, so “almost as a matter of definition,” I’m a almost paleocon, just like Pat Buchanan, and unlike William F. Buckley, who only opposed the war tepidly, and that was only after it actually started.
In my newfound (almost) paleo-conservative state, I can say with (almost) no underlying political animus that Pat Buchanan, (almost) ally though he may be, is an anti-Semite and a Holocaust denier, and the rest of my paleoconservative kin would do well to avoid citing him, or at least to skip citing him on Holocaust Remembrance Day (or Israeli Independence Day, for that matter).
I note with interest that Conservapedia does not list William F. Buckley as a neo-conservative. Probably because Buckley, while happy to ally with neocons when it was politically useful, regarded them as wrong on their central issue, foreign policy. In a 2005 interview, Buckley denounced “[t]he neoconservative hubris, which sort of assigns to America some kind of geo-strategic responsibility for maximizing democracy.” Despite this disagreement, Buckley worked with neocons because his goal was not to divide the conservative movement, but to unite it for maximum political effect.
Thus, he had no political advantage to gain by charging Pat Buchanan with anti-Semitism, unless it were a valid charge that might weaken conservatism by association. In fact, in 1991 Buchanan’s anti-Semitism was already stunningly obvious, and failing to denounce it would have left Buckley and conservatism writ large to be tarred along with Buchanan. So, just as Buckley distanced himself from anti-Semitism at the American Mercury, and just as he parted ways with the lunatic fringe of the John Birch movement early on, he called out Pat Buchanan on his anti-Semitism. In doing so, he hoped to prevent the taint from Buchanan’s Holocaust denial and anti-Semitism from spreading to the rest of his movement.
This is a project Cothran has no interest in. He’s content to wrap himself up in defending Buchanan’s anti-Semitic and Holocaust denying comments. Cothran continues to ignore the basis of Buckley’s assessment of Buchanan’s anti-Semitism, as he ignores ADL’s denunciation of Buchanan’s anti-Semitism, and extensive reporting by historians and reporters close to Buchanan which shows him happy to repeat and elaborate upon Holocaust denial, shows him to have defended Nazi war criminals whether they protested their innocence or not (NB, this involves more than just Demjanjuk), and shows him to misrepresent history in order to absolve Hitler of responsibility for what Jewish deaths he cannot denying having happened in Nazi Germany (all the while denying that they were gassed).
Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the Republican Party of 2009: desperate to embrace the anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial of Pat Buchanan, but unwilling to tolerate any dissent on tax rates from Arlen Specter.