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Did we vote for war?

Tribune-Review
| Tuesday, November 18, 2014 9:00 p.m.

“How do you like the Journal’s war?”

So boasted the headline of William Randolph Hearst’s New York flagship in 1898 when the United States declared war on Spain. While Hearst’s Journal was a warmongering sheet, it did not start the war.

Yet the headline comes to mind reading The Wall Street Journal, whose editorial pages seem to have concluded that on Nov. 4, America voted for new wars in the Middle East and beyond.

On Nov. 13, The Journal’s op-ed page was given over to Mark Dubowitz and Reuel Marc Gerecht of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD). Assuming nuclear talks with Iran conclude unsuccessfully by the Nov. 24 deadline, they write, we have four options.

Two involve continued or tougher sanctions. The other two are a pre-emptive war featuring U.S. air and missile strikes on Iran’s nuclear facilities or a U.S. attack to bring down Bashar Assad’s regime.

But taking down the Syrian regime also could lead to a slaughter of Christians and Alawites, an al-Qaida-ISIS takeover in Damascus, war with Iran and attacks on U.S. forces in Iraq and across the Middle East.

Which raises a question: What is this FDD?

Answer: A war party think tank that in 2011 took in $19 million from rabidly pro-Israel givers, according to Philip Weiss of the Mondoweiss website and Eli Clifton of Salon.

Among them, Home Depot’s Bernard Marcus gave $10.7 million, hedge fund billionaire Paul Singer, $3.6 million. Sheldon Adelson, the Vegas casino kingpin, chipped in $1.5 million.

Last year at Yeshiva University, Adelson, who pumped $150 million into the 2012 campaign, said the U.S. should fire a nuclear missile into the Iranian desert as a warning to end Iran’s nuclear program or the next atom bomb would be dropped on Teheran.

This billionaires boys club wants to buy U.S. foreign policy and a U.S. war on Iran. And the propagandists of FDD are paid to produce that war, in which they will not be doing the fighting and dying.

Back to The Journal. On Nov. 15, its lead editorial declared that the great “question before President Obama and Europe is how to stop the Napoleon of the Kremlin.”

Vladimir Putin is Napoleon? Putin is 62. By age 40, Napoleon’s empire encompassed nearly all of Europe.

Putin has reacquired Crimea, which belonged to Russia before the United States was a nation and is about the size of Vermont.

The Journal hails the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s 18-0 vote to arm the Ukrainians and urges Congress to do the same. And what would be the result of U.S. heavy weapons arriving in Kiev? Would Putin recoil in shock and awe and scurry out of Crimea?

Probably not, as The Journal itself concedes, “In 15 years running Russia, Mr. Putin has never stood down.”

Since Nov. 4, The Journal and its neocon allies have been cawing for U.S. troops to fight ISIS in Iraq and Syria, for U.S. airstrikes on Assad’s regime, for bombing Iran and for arming Ukraine to fight the Russians in a war that Kiev would surely lose.

Is this what the Grand Old Party has on offer — endless war?

Pat Buchanan is the author of the new book “The Greatest Comeback: How Richard Nixon Rose From Defeat to Create the New Majority.”

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