Charles Austin Beard: The Historian as American Nationalist

A PROGRESSIVE HISTORIAN Charles A. Beard (1874-1948) was a central figure in the American historical profession in the first half of this century. Born into a substantial Midwestern family in Indiana, he studied at Spiceland Academy, a Quaker institution. He spent 1898-1902 at Oxford University. He returned to the United States and by 1904 had … Continue reading “Charles Austin Beard: The Historian as American Nationalist”


Last week Agence-France Presse, the French news agency, reported that U.S. and British air strikes killed two civilians and injured seven in an air strike on what an Iraqi spokesman said were civilian facilities in northern Iraq. The US military said the strikes had hit military targets as a response to anti-aircraft fire. The week … Continue reading “IRAQ MILITARY BUILDUP”

Southern Critics of Intervention: Part III

As noted in a previous column, Southerners have gotten a reputation for belligerence at home and abroad. To combat this unfortunate generalization, I continue my survey of Southerners who have been critics – to some degree or another – of interventionist foreign policy and empire. Tom Watson, whose views on the Spanish-American War and the … Continue reading “Southern Critics of Intervention: Part III”

Some Thoughts on the Killings in Armenia – Who did it and Why?

The slaying of 8 prominent politicians in Armenia on 27th October including the prime minister, Vazgen Sarkisian, and speaker of the parliament, Karen Demirchian, took the Western media completely by surprise. Experts seemed to be thin on the ground – CNN provided a young lady from the Economist Intelligence Unit who squirmed in discomfort when … Continue reading “Some Thoughts on the Killings in Armenia – Who did it and Why?”

Southern Critics of Intervention: Part II

POST NO BELLUMS The Confederate States of America did not last long enough as a going concern to produce a tradition in foreign affairs. The main issue facing the Confederates was self-defense against Mr. Lincoln’s armies. This left little time for debates about intervening or not intervening in other country’s affairs or supporting other secessionist … Continue reading “Southern Critics of Intervention: Part II”

Southern Critics of Intervention: Part I

OLD TIMES THERE ARE NOT FORGOTTEN With due care, it is possible to rent a film set in the American South which is not given over to bewailing endless Evil and Corruption of the sort that logically requires permanent occupation by the Army of the Potomac. These days, it’s not just high-minded leftists or former … Continue reading “Southern Critics of Intervention: Part I”

Buchanan, The Good War, and Ironclad Orthodoxies

AN UNCIVIL WAR The controversy over Patrick J. Buchanan’s A Republic, Not an Empire is most remarkable. One could expect a presidential candidate’s critics to use his words against him – “Oh, that mine enemy had written a book.” What is odd is the way Buchanan’s critics handle his disagreements with conventional history. Good manners … Continue reading “Buchanan, The Good War, and Ironclad Orthodoxies”

War Drums Over Colombia

A tattoo of war drums over Colombia has begun and can be expected to increase in volume and frequency. National Public Radio’s "Morning Edition” has been doing a five-part series on "the crisis in Colombia.” The first few reports have had some decent reporting and managed to convey at least some sense that the issues … Continue reading “War Drums Over Colombia”