Politics

Reason’s Nick Gillespie slams Bill Kristol, Charles Krauthammer

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Jeff Poor
Media Reporter

In an appearance on C-Span’s “Washington Journal” Sunday, libertarian Reason magazine editor Nick Gillespie slammed conservative pundits Bill Kristol and Charles Krauthammer for their foreign policy commentary.

Gillespie first reacted to a piece from Kristol, editor of the Weekly Standard, in which Kristol urged Congress to act quickly to authorize the Obama administration’s request for military action in Syria.

“Let’s be blunt, I’m friendly with Bill Kristol, but he’s no Winston Churchill,” Gillespie said. “He has essentially zero wins in his column. When I think of the foreign policy mastery that comes out of The Weekly Standard, which was an instrumental mouthpiece for the Bush administration, and before that they were calling for intervention throughout the Balkans — I mean, they have never in their short existence, they have never met a war that they didn’t like.”

“For all of his plaudits and things like that, he has no credibility on foreign policy,” Gillespie continued. “Every decision that he has pushed and urged on America — including before 9/11, to start getting really antagonistic militarily with China — has been wrong. And it’s about time that we stop paying that much attention to a kind of perspective on military action that’s coming out of The Weekly Standard.”

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Next, Gillespie reacted to remarks Krauthammer, columnist for the Washington Post, made Saturday after President Barack Obama announced his decision to bring the question of military intervention in Syria to Congress. Krauthammer said the president’s statement showed it was “amateur hour” at the White House, but Gillespie suggested people take a closer look at Krauthammer’s foreign policy record.

“I’m not sure what Charles Krauthammer can point to, to say, ‘Look, I said we should go into Iraq, and that’s a great thing,’ ‘We should go into Afghanistan, and that’s a great thing,’” Gillespie said. “You know, people who are interested in going to war are always in favor of war, and then they always criticize when war doesn’t go well. The fact of the matter is we need a better understanding of what went wrong in Iraq in two ways.”

“One was the actual administration of the occupation was completely disastrous and what was truly amateur hour under the Bush administration, but then also the conception of actually going into Iraq and going into Afghanistan in the way we went with the Pottery Barn kind of method where if we broke it, we had to rebuild it,” he continued. “Pundits, every once in a while, should be held accountable for their past recommendations. And these guys have a track record that is God-awful.”

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