by and about Christopher Hitchens
Worth the Price
-Washington Post -March
"It's not enough that the Linda J. Bilmes and Joseph E.
begin their article in Sunday's Outlook section with an old
cliché (from Milton Friedman, as it happens) and then go on
make the breezy and easy assertion that "we've done the math."
Prince Valiant: Britain's Prince
Harry Should've Stayed in Afghanistan
-Slate March 11, 2008
"The extraordinary thing—and also the alarming
thing—about the hasty withdrawal of Prince Harry from his
front-line duties in Afghanistan is the way in which everybody seems to
assume that it was the only right thing to do. It was all very well,
apparently, for the junior of the two royal princes to share in the
risks and duties shouldered by his fellow soldiers in the Household
Cavalry, yet not for a moment longer than his valor could be kept a
secret. At that point, he was supposed to make a rapid exit and take
his valor with him."
“Hitch Bitch”: Where You Tell Christopher Hitchens
What You Think
February 29, 2008
"No V.F. contributing editor arouses more reader ire than
tireless columnist Christopher Hitchens. To accommodate the overflow of
outraged letters and e-mails sent to the magazine, VF Daily introduces
a new feature: Hitch Bitch. Readers seeking to weigh in on
Hitchens’s recent columns, books, and television appearances
invited to write to us at email@example.com."
Obama's magic fading as Hillary Clinton revives US presidential campaign
-Mirror March 05, 2008
"Barack Obama's magic fading as Hillary Clinton revives If
had been held last Friday, it might well have gone the other way, or a
different way. But something about the Obama magic seems somehow to
have curdled, or congealed into what some analysts call
“buyer’s remorse”. In a few short days,
world’s most charismatic candidate went straight from being
to do nothing wrong to being able to do very little right.US
Words Matter: Cliche, not
plagerism, is the problem with today's pallid political discourse
-Slate March 03, 2008
"One of the great moments among many in Martin Scorsese's
Driver is when we find the young Albert Brooks manning the phones in
the campaign office of the man we know (and he does not) to be a
double-dyed phony. On behalf of the empty and grinning Sen. Palantine,
he is complaining to a manufacturer of lapel buttons. "We asked for
buttons that said, 'We Are the People.' These say, 'We Are the
Serbs' Self-Inflicted Wounds: With Kosovo independent, Yugoslavia is
-Slate February 22, 2008
"Someone with a good memory of the conversation once told
Lord Carrington, then one of the "mediators" of the incipient
post-Yugoslavia war, came to the conclusion that Slobodan Milosevic was
a highly dangerous man. Well-disposed toward Serbia (as the British
establishment has always been), Carrington told the late dictator that
he understood Serb concerns about significant Serbian minorities in
Bosnia and Croatia. But why did Milosevic also insist on exclusive
control over Kosovo, where the Albanian population was approximately 90
President, Don't Forget Iran
-Wall Street Journal
February 19, 2008
"Dear Mr. President: A few months ago, it became possible
hear members and supporters of your administration going around
Washington and saying that the question of a nuclear-armed Iran "would
not be left to the next administration." As a line of the day, this had
the advantage of sounding both determined and slightly mysterious, as
if to commit both to everything and to nothing in particular"
Truth and Consequences: What is
the point of a paper of record that decides the untarnished record is
too much for readers?
-Slate February 18, 2008
"Do you ever wonder what is the greatest enemy of the free
press? One might mention a few conspicuous foes, such as the state
censor, the monopolistic proprietor, the advertiser who wants either
favorable coverage or at least an absence of unfavorable coverage, and
To Hell With the Archbishop of
CanterburyRowan Williams' dangerous claptrap about "plural
-Slate February 11, 2008
"In December 1931, George Orwell got himself arrested in
slums of East London in order to find out about conditions "inside,"
and then he wrote an essay about the people he met while in detention.
One of them was a buyer for a kosher butcher who had embezzled some of
his boss's money."
Bushies to Human Enyoy: Shut Up -
In North Korea, it's almost impossible to separate nuclear policy from
-Slate February 04, 2008
"A few weeks ago, I wrote slightly disobligingly about Jay
Lefkowitz, the man who holds the new congressionally mandated post of
special envoy for human rights in North Korea. The North Korean state
does not recognize the concept of human rights and considers every one
of its citizens to be the property of the ruling family, so Lefkowitz's
job is admittedly an extremely difficult one, but I tried to call
attention to the way in which he (in his rather slender annual report
to Congress), and the administration in general, had gone somewhat
quiet on the subject of North Korea's famine-stricken slave society,
all the while involving themselves in "constructive engagement" with
"dear leader" Kim Jong-il on the question of nuclear facilities."
-World Affairs Journal
"A few months ago, it became possible to hear
supporters of your administration going around Washington and saying
that the question of a nuclear-armed Iran “would not be left
the next administration.” As a line of the day, this had the
advantage of sounding both determined and slightly mysterious, as if to
commit both to everything and to nothing in particular."
Rematch: Hitchens V. Boteach
- a report of the
January 30th debate by Alexander Zaitchik
-Hitchens Watch January
"The last time I saw Hitchens debate, the subject was
opponent the wide-tied British antiwar MP George Galloway. Outside
Baruch College before the event, Hitch worked the line handing out
Xeroxed fact sheets on his opponent—basically a collection of
Galloway’s stupidest comments and proven fabrications."
Fool Me Thrice: It should be no
surprise that the Clintons are playing the race card
-Slate Jaunary 28, 2008
"How can one equal Bill Clinton for thuggery and
when it comes to the so-called "race card"? And where does one even
start with the breathtaking nastiness of his own conduct, and that of
his supporters, in the last week? Barack Obama carries South Carolina
having made no sectarian appeal to any specific kind of voter, and the
best Clinton can say is that this is no better than Jesse Jackson
managed to do. Really? "
Hitchens, Carl Rove
(Audio 34:40 min Transcript
-The Hugh Hewitt Show
January 23, 2008
Hewitt: Hour 1 - Hugh talks with Vanity Fair columnist
Christopher Hitchens, and has him react to an odd exchange between Bill
Clinton and a CNN reporter in South Carolina. Hugh also talks with
political guru, Karl Rove.
Huck's Free Pass: Why are the
media ignoring Mike Huckabee's remarks about the Confederate Flag?
-Slate January 21, 2008
"In this country, it seems that you can always get an
going about "race" as long as it is guaranteed to be phony, but never
when it is real. Almost every day brings news of full-dress
media-oriented spats about Don Imus, Bob Grant, or the recent nonstory
about how some golf show had managed to mention Tiger Woods and the
word lynch in the same news cycle."
Impulses: Christopher Hitchens
-Washington Post January
Christopher Hitchens discusses his upbringing, being an
anti-theist, his contempt for the religious, the value of religion, the
trobule with Islam, and mortality without God with On Faith's Sally
Secret - Paul Scott's Raj Quartet reveals how sex doomed the British
-The Atlantic Monthly
"There are not as many theories about the fall of the
Empire as there once were about the eclipse of its Roman predecessor,
but one of the micro theories has always appealed to me more than any
of the macro explanations. And it concerns India. For the first century
or so of British dominion over the subcontinent, the men of the East
India Company more or less took their chances."
with Christopher Hitchens - Interviewed by Gregg LaGambina
-The A.V. Club December
"At the risk of fatwa and lightning bolts, The A.V. Club
recently visited Hitchens for a holiday-inspired conversation about
God, eggnog, Hanukkah, virgins, plastic trees, Kwanzaa, and of course,
There's something pathetic and embarrassing about our obsession with
Barack Obama's race
-Slate January 07, 2008
"To put it squarely and bluntly, is it because he is or is
because he isn't? To phrase it another way, is it because of what he
says or what he doesn't say? Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois is the
current beneficiary of a tsunami of drool."
The Iowa Scam: The undemocratic
caucuses are a terrible way to choose a presidential candidate
-Slate December 31, 2007
"It is quite astonishing to see with what deadpan and
tone our press and television report the open corruption—and
flagrantly anti-democratic character—of the Iowa caucuses.
not enough that we have to read of inducements openly offered to
potential supporters—I almost said "voters"—even if
mini-bribes only take the form of "platters of sandwiches" and "novelty
items" (I am quoting from Sunday's New York Times). It's also that
campaign aides are showing up at Iowan homes "with DVD's that
[explain] how the caucuses work."
with Michael Krasny Interviews Christopher Hitchens
-KQED Forum with Michael
Krasny December 31, 2007
"Forum talks with author and journalist Christopher
Hitchens' latest books are "God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons
Everything" and "The Portable Atheist: Essential Readings for the
Non-Believer." He writes for Slate and is a contributing editor to The
Atlantic Monthly and Vanity Fair."
-Vanity Fair January 2008
"Meet Garech Browne, the Guinness heir whose father raised
in their drawing room. And Gavin Pretor-Pinney, founder of the Cloud
Appreciation Society. And the Marquis of Bath, with 64 mistresses he
calls “wifelets.” Tim Walker captures a cross
proud standard-bearers in Britain’s long tradition of
eccentricity as Christopher Hitchens explains why his native land often
seems like one big Monty Python skit."
Daughter of Destiny: Benazir
-Slate December 27, 2007
"The sternest critic of Benazir Bhutto would not have been
to deny that she possessed an extraordinary degree of physical courage.
When her father was lying in prison under sentence of death from
Pakistan's military dictatorship in 1979, and other members of her
family were trying to escape the country, she boldly flew back in. Her
subsequent confrontation with the brutal Gen. Zia-ul-Haq cost her five
years of her life, spent in prison."
This is Not A Test: It's
perfectly reasonable to reject a candidate because of his religious view
-Slate December 17, 2007
"Just before this gets completely out of hand and becomes
mantralike repetition, let us please recall what the careful phrases of
Article VI of the U.S. Constitution actually and very carefully and
The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of
the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial
Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be
bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no
religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office
or public Trust under the United States."
Abolish the CIA: Destroying the
interrogation tapes amounts to mutiny and treason
-Slate December 10, 2007
"It seems flabbergastingly improbable that President
Bush learned of the National Intelligence Estimate concerning Iranian
nuclear ambitions only a few days before the rest of us did, but the
haplessness of his demeanor suggested that he might, in fact, have been
telling the truth. After all, had the administration known for any
appreciable length of time that the mullahs had hit the pause button on
their program in late 2003, it would have been in a position to make a
claim that is quite probably true..."
Holy Nonsense: Mitt Romney's
windy, worthless speech
-Slate December 06, 2007
"Almost the only clever thing about Gov. Mitt Romney's
long-denied and long-delayed but obviously long-prepared "response" was
its location at the George H. W. Bush Presidential Library, which
allowed him to pose (prematurely, I'd say) in front of a presidential
seal as well as a thicket of American flags. Composed chiefly of
boilerplate, the windy speech raised the vexed question of the
candidate's religious affiliation—and thus broke the taboo on
mentioning it—without setting to rest any of the difficulties
that make it legitimate to raise the issue in the first place."
Hanukkah: The holiday celebrates the triumph of tribal Jewishs
-Slate December 03, 2007
"High on the list of idiotic commonplace expressions is
maxim that "it is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness."
How do such fatuous pieces of folk wisdom ever get started on their
careers of glib quotation? Of course it would be preferable to light a
candle than to complain about the darkness. You would only be bitching
about the darkness if you didn't have a candle to begin with. "
not all sweetness and light? Reviewed by
-Times Online October
"First of all, her name. It is emphatically not one of
pseudo-African monikers, such as Tawana, that some black American
parents inflict on their children. It comes from the musical direction
con dolcezza, or “with sweetness”."
Mitt the Mormon: Why Romney needs
to talk about his faith
-Slate November 26, 2007
"Mitt Romney appears to think that, in respect of the
beliefs of his church, he has come up with a twofer response. Not only
can he decline to answer questions about these beliefs, he can also
reap additional benefit from complaining that people keep asking him
about them. In a video response of revolting sanctimony and self-pity
last week, he responded to some allegedly anti-Mormon "push poll" calls
in Iowa and New Hampshire by saying that it was "un-American" to bring
up his "faith," especially "at a time when we are preparing for
Thanksgiving," whatever that had to do with it."
Inveriews: Christopher Hitchens
"Christopher Hitchens is a contrarian and author.
contributing editor at Vanity Fair and Slate, and this past year he
released his controversial book God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons
This interview took place in a Shul (A place of prayer for Jews) and it
is customary for even non-believers to wear a yarmulke on the premises."
Martin Amis is no racist
-The Guardian November
"Ronan Bennett's clumsy tirade against Martin Amis in G2
Monday will not have been a complete waste of space if it allows us to
revisit the words "discriminate" or "discrimination". In a public
quarrel that originated between two professors of English (Amis and
Terry Eagleton) it ought not to be necessary to remind people that
these terms are, at root, complimentary."
Something To Give Thanks For:
Good news from Iraq
-Slate November 19 2007
"A few weeks ago, in Britain's Prospect magazine, the
foreign editor, Bartle Bull, published a bold essay saying that the
high tide of violence in Iraq was essentially behind us and that the
ebb had disclosed some interesting things. First, the Iraqi people as a
whole had looked into the abyss of civil war and had drawn back from
the brink. Second, the majority of Sunni Arabs had realized that their
involvement with al-Qaida forces was not a patriotic "insurgency" but
was instead a horrific mistake and had exposed their society to the
most sadistic and degraded element in the entire Muslim world."
Excerpt from 'Portable Atheist'
"One is continually told, as an unbeliever, that it is
old-fashioned to rail against the primitive stupidities and cruelties
of religion because after all, in these enlightened times, the old
superstitions have died away. Nine times out of ten, in debate with a
cleric, one will be told not of some dogma of religious certitude but
of some instance of charitable or humanitarian work undertaken by a
Norman Mailer: Remembering the
pint-size Jewish fireplug
-Slate November 11, 2007
"Culture," said Norman Mailer, pugnaciously, in 1981, "is
a little risk." Admittedly, he was uttering these words at a rather
chaotic press conference, just after a tripwire-dangerous convict for
whose release he had so ardently campaigned had stabbed a harmless
waiter to death. But I remember admiring Mailer's audacity even as I
slightly whistled at his promiscuity, and I suppose that no
appreciation of the man is really possible without taking a comparative
survey of both those capacities. I find I have to add that it's quite
surprisingly difficult to picture the cultural scene without him. "
Last, Christopher Hitchens Describes His Infamous Waxing
-New York's Magazine
Daily Intelligencer November 08, 2007
"Today's "Rush & Molloy" reminds us, as if we
that some poor lady had to wax Christopher Hitchens's balls this year.
This, we have noticed, is the most well-publicized hair removal since
Britney took hold of a razor in a prison-grade beauty salon."
Christopher Hitchens on Thomas
Paine's 'Rights Of Man'
- by Richard Brookhiser
Tribune November 09, 2007
"Earlier this year, the Atlantic Monthly Press began to
a series of books on "books that changed the world." Now comes "Thomas
Paine's 'Rights of Man': A Biography," an examination by the journalist
and polemicist Christopher Hitchens."
Isolationism Isn't the Answer:
Jihadists aren't in Afghanistan - or Iraq - because we are there.
-Slate November 05, 2007
"I call your attention to the front-page report in the
New York Times in which David Rohde, writing from the Afghan town of
Gardez, tells of a new influx of especially vicious foreign fighters.
Describing it as the largest such infiltration since 2001, Rohde goes
on to say, "The foreign fighters are not only bolstering the ranks of
the insurgency. They are more violent, uncontrollable and extreme than
even their locally bred allies."