FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Hitchens in the Dock

by JACK McCARTHY

In the final decade before his demise, the late Christopher Hitchens had become the Phil Spector of American politics. Ala Spector, even his hair looked crazy.

After injecting himself into the Clinton-Lewinsky affair,  “Hitch 22” appeared on some network show looking, humorist Harry Shearer hilariously noted on his radio program, “Le Show”, “like he just rolled out of bed at the homeless shelter.”  He was drunk, hair going every which way, and as he angrily ranted about Clinton’s adulterous affair, he couldn’t stop blinking.

Hitchens’ evolution from young Trot, to eloquent dashing columnist for the liberal Nation magazine, to frothing war monger and volunteer mouthpiece and cheerleader for the Bush-Cheney junta’s plot to take the U.S. to war has been well-chronicled from Ian Buruma in the New York Review of Books, the website “Hitchenswatch”(which humorously noted, “We watch him so you don’t have to”) to the pages of CounterPunch.

But surely in the future the gold standard  for the deconstrucion of Hitchens will be Richard Seymours’ “Unhitched: The Trial of Christopher Hitchens.”

The title of course is an ironic reference to Hitchens  book, “The Trial of Henry
Unhitched_zps5d3882c3Kissinger.”

But now, posthumously, it’s Hitchens’ turn in the dock.

Seymour’s book, part of Verso’s “Counterblast,” series,  is a thoroughly documented prosecutors brief and demonstrates why in a fair and just world Hitchens, who conspired with the likes of Ahmed Chalabi to start a most unnecessary war, would stand trial with Bush, Cheney and Paul Wolfowitz as an accused war criminal.

Seymour’s meticulous, Chomsky-esh detailing of the Hitchens saga was chided in the Washington Post for lacking “style” and being harshly biased. But, hey, this is a trial and Seymour as the chief prosecutor is supposed to  be biased.

Frankly, my favorite part of the book is the cover photo of Hitchens in mad hatter mode.

One can’t help but wonder what would be going through Hitchens head, were he still amongst the living, reading about  Secretary of State John Kerry warning Iraq to quit allowing Iran to use Iraqi airspace to assist the Assad regime in putting down a rebellion.

My guess is, unlike former Bush speech writer David “Axis of  Evil” Frum, Hitchens would continue to dissemble.

According to Glenn Greewald in The Guardian, for March 18, Frum not only laments how things have turned out in Iraq, but also admits in a Newsweek column that previous denials to the contrary, the war was very much about oil.

A newly contrite Frum also reveals that the real “axis of evil” was a secretive meeting with Ahmed Chalabi–in the apartment of Christopher Hitchens to discuss strategy for starting a war.

In the final analysis, the best characterization of Hitchens came from the man who knew him best: Alexander Cockburn. In a long ago Nation column, writing even before Hitchens became “just another right -wing porker,” Alex noted that more and more Hitchens had “postures” not “principles.”

The Trial of Christopher Hitchens demonstrates in lush detail that in the matter of Christopher Hitchens its case closed.

Jack McCarthy is former managing editor of the Florida Flambeau, contributing editor to Online Journal, and a proud contributor to Counterpunch. Can be reached at jackm32301@yahoo.com

 

 

Jack McCarthy is a writer in Tallahassee, Florida. He can be reached at jackm32301@yahoo.com

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

Weekend Edition
March 24, 2017
Friday - Sunday
Michael Hudson
Trump is Obama’s Legacy: Will this Break up the Democratic Party?
Eric Draitser
Donald Trump and the Triumph of White Identity Politics
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Nothing Was Delivered
Paul Buhle
The CIA and the Intellectuals…Again
Andrew Levine
Ryan’s Choice
Joshua Frank
Global Coal in Freefall, Tar Sands Development Drying Up (Bad News for Keystone XL)
Anthony DiMaggio
Ditching the “Deep State”: The Rise of a New Conspiracy Theory in American Politics
Rob Urie
Boris and Natasha Visit Fantasy Island
John Wight
London and the Dreary Ritual of Terrorist Attacks
David Rosen
Why Did Trump Target Transgender Youth?
Vijay Prashad
Inventing Enemies
Ben Debney
Outrage From the Imperial Playbook
Michael J. Sainato
Bernie Sanders’ Economic Advisor Shreds Trumponomics
Bill Willers
Volunteerism; Charisma; the Ivy League Stranglehold: a Very Brief Trilogy
Lawrence Davidson
Moral Failure at the UN
Pete Dolack
World Bank Declares Itself Above the Law
Nicola Perugini - Neve Gordon
Israel’s Human Rights Spies
Patrick Cockburn
From Paris to London: Another City, Another Attack
Ralph Nader
Reason and Justice Address Realities
Ramzy Baroud
‘Decolonizing the Mind’: Using Hollywood Celebrities to Validate Islam
Colin Todhunter
Monsanto in India: The Sacred and the Profane
Louisa Willcox
Grizzlies Under the Endangered Species Act: How Have They Fared?
Norman Pollack
Militarization of American Fascism: Trump the Usurper
Pepe Escobar
North Korea: The Real Serious Options on the Table
Brian Cloughley
“These Things Are Done”: Eavesdropping on Trump
Sheldon Richman
You Can’t Blame Trump’s Military Budget on NATO
Carol Wolman
Trump vs the People: a Psychiatrist’s Analysis
Stanley L. Cohen
The White House . . . Denial and Cover-ups
Farhang Jahanpour
America’s Woes, Europe’s Responsibilities
Joseph Natoli
March Madness Outside the Basketball Court
Bruce Mastron
Slaughtered Arabs Don’t Count
Ayesha Khan
The Headscarf is Not an Islamic Compulsion
Pauline Murphy
Unburied Truth: Exposing the Church’s Iron Chains on Ireland
Ron Jacobs
Music is Love, Music is Politics
Christopher Brauchli
Prisoners as Captive Customers
M. Shadee Malaklou
An Open Letter to Duke University’s Class of 2007, About Your Open Letter to Stephen Miller
Robert Koehler
The Mosque That Disappeared
Franklin Lamb
Update from Madaya
Dan Bacher
Federal Scientists Find Delta Tunnels Plan Will Devastate Salmon
Barbara Nimri Aziz
The Gig Economy: Which Side Are You On?
Kollibri terre Sonnenblume
Marines to Kill Desert Tortoises
Louis Proyect
What Caused the Holodomor?
Max Mastellone
Seeking Left Unity Through a Definition of Progressivism
Charles R. Larson
Review: David Bellos’s “Novel of the Century: the Extraordinary Adventure of Les Misérables”
David Yearsley
Ear of Darkness: the Soundtracks of Steve Bannon’s Films
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail