The New York Sun is a decidedly neoconservative paper, known for its rabid defense of Israel and its advocacy of lower taxes. But sometimes you can get lulled by its Metro coverage, or its decent, if staid, arts coverage. Today, though, managing editor Ira Stoll reviews lead neocon Norman Podhoretz's new book World War IV, and Stoll's perspective should put any illusions about the paper's true colors to rest. In Stoll's mind, the war in Iraq is about overthrowing a fascist regime—nothing more, nothing less—and the echoes of the U.S.'s too-late involvement in World War II are very loud. And by that logic, President Bush should be hailed as a hero, not a warmonger, the thousands of Iraqi civilian and U.S. soldier deaths be damned.
In the end, though, like the patriotic American he is, Mr. Podhoretz comes out on the side of thinking that "the American people of this generation" do have it in us to defeat the Islamofascists as previous generations of Americans defeated the Nazis in World War II and the Communists in World War III. My own prediction is that it will happen quicker than Mr. Podhoretz thinks it will, though I can understand the reasoning behind wanting to prepare the American public for a long struggle.
Part of the reason a victory may come quicker than many expect is that the same Internet and televisions that beam images of defeat into American living rooms and propaganda into enemy tents and caves are able too to spread images of voting in Iraq and anti-Syrian protests in Lebanon and the words of pro-democracy dissidents in Iran and of the abuses of the ruling mullahs. If every American would read "World War IV," President Bush's approval rating would soar; when it is translated and published in Arabic and Farsi, it will be a sign that victory is drawing near.