Wednesday, April 11, 2018

“And So the Purges Began”

The New Republic reminds us:
In the early days of National Review, the magazine occasionally published anti-war libertarians like John T. Flynn and Murray Rothbard (who also helped Buckley with his 1957 book Up from Liberalism). But Flynn and Rothbard were Cold War doves who believed that the militarization of America was as serious a threat as the welfare state. This put them at odds with National Review hawkish stance on foreign policy; co-founder L. Brent Bozell Jr., for instance, once said that the U.S. may have an “obligation” to launch a pre-emptive nuclear war against the Soviet Union. By the late 1950s, Flynn and Rothbard found they were no longer welcome in the pages of National Review...

For Murray Rothbard, the history of National Review was largely a story of exclusion. “And so the purges began,” Rothbard recounted in a 1992 article. “One after another, Buckley and the National Review purged and excommunicated all the radicals, all the nonrespectables. Consider the roll call: isolationists (such as John T. Flynn), anti-Zionists, libertarians, Ayn Randians, the John Birch Society, and all those who continued, like the early National Review, to dare to oppose Martin Luther King and the civil-rights revolution after Buckley had changed and decided to embrace it.”
-Robert Wenzel  

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