Saturday, June 23, 2007

Today's Example of the Dolchstoßlegende

First, the blurb by Kevin Drum:

STAB IN THE BACK WATCH....Here's the latest from Instapundit, in its entirety:

IN THE MAIL: Col. Buzz Patterson's War Crimes: The Left's Campaign to Destroy Our Military and Lose the War on Terror.

I don't think that the left wants to lose the war on terror, exactly — they just want Bush to lose the war on terror. I suspect, however, that Patterson's theme is one that we'll hear more in the future, especially if things go badly in Iraq.

Oh yes indeedy, I too expect we'll be hearing more of this in the future, especially if things go badly in Iraq. Lots more.

You can almost smell the stink of desperation from the pro-war crowd. The next couple of years is going to be a nonstop frenzy of books, articles, TV shows, op-eds, radio segments, blog posts, and white papers about how everyone except George Bush and his enablers were responsible for our catastrophe in the Middle East. Anyone will do, as long as it's not them.

As I've noted before, the Dolchstoßlegende is a rhetorical device that dates back to the various Nazi propagandists during the Weimar era, as a way of blaming Socialists, Jews, etc., for the German loss in WWI. The Dolchstoßlegende later served the Nazis to suppress dissent upon taking power in the early 1930s. The same approach has been taken by a number of right-wing types over the years, including the post-Vietnam War era in the US (one can find some early pop cultural usage in the 1980s Rambo movies). No doubt, we've already seen the Dolchstoßlegende rear its ugly head over the last couple years (primarily by Republicans) as it has become increasingly obvious that their beloved Iraq War has been nothing short of a disaster, and I'm expecting its practitioners to become ever more shrill and violent in their rhetoric in the coming months and years.

See also, INSTAPUTZ.

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