One Person's Opinion

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Monday, August 30, 2004
 
COMING NEXT WEEK, AN ARTICLE BY OLIVER NORTH, DENYING THAT ARMS WERE SOLD TO IRAN IN THE 1980'S:
You know, you would think that National Review would know better than to run an item in its blog, expressing skepticism that Israel could possibly be spying on the US's internal Iran policy debates, written by Michael Ledeen, a pro-Likud neoconservative who reportedly organized back-channel communications between Bush Administration neoconservatives and an infamous shady Iranian arms dealer who played a crucial role in the Iran-Contra scandal. (Nowhere on the National Review site have I found any disclosure of Ledeen's obvious conflict of interest with respect to his post.)

You would especially think that National Review would be cautious about allowing Ledeen to post his thoughts on this issue when Ledeen refused to comment to the Washington Monthly when they reported on Ledeen's activities.

I don't know about you, but to me, a denial that a wrongful act took place, made by someone who is sympathetic to the ideological goals of the suspect, and who organized a blatant attempt to subvert official policy relating to the same subject matter as the suspect's alleged wrongdoing, is not particularly credible as is. But when that person is directly asked to comment to the publication who breaks the story, refuses to do so, and then publishes his denial (i.e., a comment that should have been made to the reporters who broke the story when they asked him to comment) in a sympathetic, ideological publication that will not criticize him or note his obvious conflicts of interest, I don't think it's entitled to any weight at all. In fact, these circumstances make me almost certain that Ledeen is being dishonest and is avoiding commenting in a venue where he might face uncomfortable questions. Shame on National Review for allowing him to get away with this.


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