A Human Pattern

by Jay Nordlinger

Response To...

Cooking the Intelligence on ISIS

Below, Arthur Herman has an excellent and infuriating post headed “Cooking the Intelligence on ISIS.” It includes these sentences:

Now we know why Democrats were so insistent somebody had to be cooking the intelligence about Saddam Hussein’s WMD’s. It’s because that’s what they would have done themselves to fit their policy line.

Forgive the self-reference, but I couldn’t help thinking of something I had in a column this week — the second of two columns about Dana Perino and her wonderful new book:

Putin was convinced that Bush fired Dan Rather. Bush tried to tell him otherwise: CBS News is a corporate entity, not a governmental entity, etc. To no avail. Putin insisted on saying in public that Bush fired Rather.

I think of David Pryce-Jones, and what he has said about the Arabs: They cannot believe that you haven’t done what they themselves would do. Or that you would not do what they themselves would do.

This is a problem. Interesting, but a significant problem.

Someone once told me a story about Cambodian refugees in California. They were pulled over for speeding (or a broken tail light or something). They got out of the car and knelt with their hands behind their heads, waiting, evidently, to be executed.

It’s what they knew back home.

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