In the Cold War Americans learned that not only was the Communist Party U.S.A. a wholly owned subsidiary of Joseph Stalin's Comintern, that party had deeply infiltrated the U.S. government and Hollywood. In the late '40s and early '50s, America was convulsed over communist penetration of our institutions.
Martin Luther King Jr. was wiretapped by J. Edgar Hoover at the direction of JFK and Attorney General Robert Kennedy because he refused to dump an adviser, Stanley Levison, who was a communist and thought to be a Soviet spy.
Were the Kennedys being "repressive and xenophobic"?
If we were apoplectic that Soviet-funded communists were seeking to influence our culture and politics, why ought not other countries, with cultures and institutions far different from our own, react even as we did?
In the stricter societies of the Islamic world, governments have enacted laws regarding alcohol, premarital sex, divorce, abortion, homosexuality, gay marriage and religious conversions different from any such laws in the U.S.A.
In some of those countries, such activities can produce floggings, amputations, stonings and beheadings. In many of these countries, children are indoctrinated in the Islamic faith in government-supported schools. Not here.
We may deplore this, but where do we get the right to intervene in the internal affairs of these countries if they do not threaten us?
And are we really consistent in our democracy promotion?
How many U.S.-funded agents of Freedom House, NED, IRI and NDI are in Bahrain demanding elections that would permit the Shia majority to dump the king and oust our 5th Fleet from its Persian Gulf base?
How would we react if Riyadh funneled billions of petrodollars into organizations and agents to finance Wahhabi madrassas and assist local Muslim communities in the U.S.A. with their efforts to enact sharia law?
What lies behind U.S. interventions in the internal affairs of countries all over the world?
There is, first, the residual Cold War mindset. What we did for Solidarity in Poland was right and successful, and we cannot give up this tool of democracy just because the Cold War is over.
Second, there is the arrogance of power, the End-of-History babble about democracy being the last, best hope of earth to which all nations should aspire -- and if they don't, give them a kick in that direction.
Once the most admired of nations, America is no longer so.
Why not? Because of our compulsive interventions, military and political, in the internal affairs of nations that are none of our business.
Defund the American Comintern, and bring the outside agitators home.
Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of "Suicide of a Superpower: Will America Survive to 2025?" To find out more about Patrick Buchanan and read features by other Creators writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators webpage at www.creators.com.
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