by Nick Cohen
Fourth Estate, 2007, 400 pp., $26.00
The pro-invasion left was always a small battalion, made up almost entirely of journalists and intellectuals who believed toppling the Taliban and Saddam Hussein was a good idea—even if the only leader available to lead the charge was George W. Bush. Yet almost since the first statue of Saddam fell to the ground, it has been losing troops—to the antiwar side, to a sullen AWOL silence, or to despair. So far, there have been retractions from Peter Beinart, Norman Geras, David Aaronovitch, and more; only a few lone fighters remain, like Japanese troops hiding in the forest, unaware their war has been lost. Now, with What’s Left?, the most substantial work by a pro-war left intellectual has been published, and we can ask, Did this strange niche in Anglo-American politics—of which I was a part, for a time—produce any enduring insights?
British columnist Nick Cohen was always one of the most gifted—and unexpected—of pro-war polemicists. In 2003 he was the most prominent left-wing critic of To...
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