General Zinni, what a Ninny

Joel Mowbray

12/31/2003 12:00:00 AM - Joel Mowbray

Discussing the Iraq war with the Washington Post last week, former General Anthony Zinni took the path chosen by so many anti-Semites: he blamed it on the Jews.

  Neither President Bush nor Vice-President Cheney—nor for that matter Zinni’s old friend, Secretary of State Colin Powell—was to blame.  It was the Jews.  They “captured” both Bush and Cheney, and Powell was merely being a “good soldier.”

  Technically, the former head of the Central Command in the Middle East didn’t say “Jews.”  He instead used a term that has become a new favorite for anti-Semites: “neoconservatives.”  As the name implies, “neoconservative” was originally meant to denote someone who is a newcomer to the right.  In the 90’s, many people self-identified themselves as “neocons,” but today that term has become synonymous with “Jews.”

  And if anybody should know better, it’s Gen. Zinni.  It is well-known that those who are labeled “neocons” within the administration—whether the number-two official at the Pentagon, Paul Wolfowitz, or undersecretary of Defense Doug Feith—are almost always Jews.

  Sadly typical is a Business Week article this May that identified Wolfowitz, Feith, Defense Policy Board member Richard Perle, former Reagan administration official Ken Adelman and Weekly Standard editor William Kristol—all Jews—as “neocons,” yet Cheney and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld—neither one Jewish—as simply “key allies.”  Policy beliefs and worldviews were not different between these two groups; only religion distinguishes them.

  Given that the “neocons” do not control the Departments of State or Defense nor the National Security Council—gentiles all head those agencies—and given that the White House is clearly run by non-Jews, how is it that Zinni claims that the “neocons” were responsible for the U.S. liberating Iraq?  As he explains to the Post, “Somehow, the neocons captured the president. They captured the vice president.”

  And the Post piece uses dramatic language when discussing Zinni’s views on the “neocons”:

  “The more he listened to Wolfowitz and other administration officials talk about Iraq, the more Zinni became convinced that interventionist ‘neoconservative’ ideologues were plunging the nation into a war in a part of the world they didn’t understand.”

  Zinni’s comments are eerily similar to those made by former Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad at the Organization of the Islamic Conference summit this October.  In a speech that drew a standing ovation from the leaders of Muslim nations in attendance, Mahathir remarked, “Today the Jews rule the world by proxy.  They get others to fight and die for them.”

  Since Jews make up roughly 2% of the American population and less than a fraction of one percent of the world’s—yet attract disproportionately more of the world’s bigoted venom—the only way to perpetuate the hatred of Jews that has existed for centuries is to blame them for controlling vital industries, “ruling the world by proxy,” or by “capturing” the leader of the free world and his likewise freely elected vice-president.

  Let’s suppose for a moment that Zinni, who could not be reached for comment, had no idea that “neocon” has become code for “Jew.”  At best, his statements were simply ludicrous.  Both Cheney and Bush had full knowledge of the unabated evil of Saddam Hussein—the former even having helped lead the Gulf War as the Secretary of Defense—and neither needed to be “captured” by anyone to understand the need to rid the world of Saddam’s tyranny.

  But now let’s suppose Zinni has at least minimal common sense and at least passively follows Washington politics.  In that instance, Zinni’s comments are not much different than Mahathir’s—and just as inaccurate.  As anyone with even a passing knowledge of the administration can tell you, the president and the vice-president were probably the two biggest advocates for liberating Iraq.  Even at the staff level, the majority of the leading “hawks” were gentiles such as National Security Adviser Condoleeza Rice and White House chief of staff Andrew Card.

  It’s a shame that someone who so honorably served his nation for three decades would tarnish his legacy with such idiotic remarks.  If he didn’t mean to use “neocon” as a code word for “Jew,” he should say so.  But if he meant to, then he should just shut up.