But Who Was Right—Rudy or Ron?

It was the decisive moment of the South Carolina

Hearing Rep. Ron Paul recite the reasons for Arab and
Islamic resentment of the United States, including 10
years of bombing and sanctions that brought death to
thousands of Iraqis after the Gulf War, Rudy Giuliani
broke format and exploded:

"That`s really an
extraordinary statement, as someone who lived through
the attack of 9-11, that we invited the attack because
we were attacking Iraq. I don`t think I have ever heard
that before, and I have heard some pretty absurd
explanations for Sept. 11. "

"I would ask the
congressman to withdraw that comment and tell us what he
really meant by it." [Transcript]

The applause for Rudy`s rebuke was thunderous—the
soundbite of the night and best moment of Rudy`s

After the debate, on Fox News` "Hannity and Colmes,"
came one of those delicious moments on live television.
As Michael Steele, GOP spokesman, was saying that Paul
should probably be cut out of future debates, the
running tally of votes by Fox News viewers was showing
Ron Paul, with 30 percent, the winner of the debate.

Brother Hannity seemed startled and perplexed by the
votes being text-messaged in the thousands to Fox News
saying Paul won, Romney was second, Rudy third and
McCain far down the track at 4 percent.

"I would ask the congressman to … tell us what
he meant,"
said Rudy.

A fair question and a crucial question.

When Ron Paul said the 9-11 killers were "over
here because we are over there,"
he was not excusing
the mass murderers of 3,000 Americans. He was explaining
the roots of hatred out of which the suicide-killers

Lest we forget, Osama bin Laden was among the
mujahideen whom we, in the Reagan decade, were aiding
when they were fighting to expel the Red Army from
Afghanistan. We sent them Stinger missiles, Spanish
mortars, sniper rifles. And they helped drive the
Russians out.

What Ron Paul was addressing was the question of what
turned the allies we aided into haters of the United
States. Was it the fact that they discovered we have
freedom of speech or separation of church and state? Do
they hate us because of who we are? Or do they hate us
because of what we do?

Osama bin Laden in his declaration of war in the
1990s said it was U.S. troops on the sacred soil of
Saudi Arabia, U.S. bombing and sanctions of a crushed
Iraqi people, and U.S. support of Israel`s persecution
of the Palestinians that were the reasons he and his
mujahideen were declaring war on us.

Elsewhere, he has mentioned

, the secret British-French deal that
double-crossed the Arabs who had fought for their
freedom alongside Lawrence of Arabia and were rewarded
with a quarter century of British-French imperial
domination and humiliation.

Almost all agree that, horrible as 9-11 was, it was
not anarchic terror. It was political terror, done with
a political motive and a political objective.

What does Rudy Giuliani think the political motive
was for 9-11?

Was it because we are good and they are evil? Is it
because they hate our freedom? Is it that simple?

Ron Paul says Osama bin Laden is delighted we invaded

Does the man not have a point? The United States is
now tied down in a bloody guerrilla war in the Middle
East and increasingly hated in Arab and Islamic
countries where we were once hugely admired as the first
and greatest of the anti-colonial nations. Does anyone
think that Osama is unhappy with what is happening to us
in Iraq?

Of the 10 candidates on stage in South Carolina, Dr.
Paul alone opposed the war. He alone voted against the
war. Have not the last five years vindicated him, when
two-thirds of the nation now agrees with him that the
war was a mistake, and journalists and politicians left
and right are babbling in confession, "If I had only
known then what I know now …"

Rudy implied that Ron Paul was unpatriotic to suggest
the violence against us out of the Middle East may be in
reaction to U.S. policy in the Middle East. Was
President Hoover unpatriotic when, the day after Pearl
Harbor, he wrote to friends,

"You and I know that this continuous putting pins in
rattlesnakes finally got this country bitten."

Pearl Harbor came out of the blue, but it also came
out of the troubled history of U.S.-Japanese relations
going back 40 years. Hitler`s attack on Poland was naked
aggression. But to understand it, we must understand
what was done at Versailles—after the Germans laid down
their arms based on

Wilson`s 14 Points.
We do not excuse—but we must

Ron Paul is no TV debater. But up on that stage in
Columbia, he was speaking intolerable truths.
Understandably, Republicans do not want him back,
telling the country how the party blundered into this
misbegotten war.

By all means, throw out of the debate the only man
who was right from the beginning on Iraq.



Patrick J. Buchanan

no introduction
readers; his book

State of Emergency: The Third World Invasion and
Conquest of America

can be ordered from