Here’s his latest screed from The Spectator, in which he basically accuses Chomsky, and the anti-war left in general, of hypocrisy and indifference to suffering, because they haven’t spoken out more against the Russian occupation of the Crimea:
I normally wouldn’t comment on such an article, because Nick Cohen attacking Chomsky, and the anti-war left in general, is akin to Socialist Worker publishing an article saying something like ‘That Trotsky was a pretty good bloke, wasn’t he?’. That is, utterly expected and unremarkable.
Essentially, Cohen doesn’t buy the argument that Chomsky has often made in trying to justify his focus on the crimes of the U.S. and it’s allies: namely, that these are the ones he is most responsible for, and the ones he is most likely to be able to influence.
Indeed, he calls the argument an ‘isolationist view’; equivalent to the ‘right-wing belief that we should not give aid to the poor world’; and a view which ‘rules out the idea of solidarity’.
He doesn’t even attempt to demonstrate why this should necessarily be the case – his rebuttal seems like a string of grasping non-sequiturs to me, quite frankly – and the idea that Noam Chomsky has ever ‘ruled out the idea of solidarity’ is simply absurd, as anyone who has considered his life’s work honestly must know.
No doubt Cohen will next be telling Syrians who are protesting the crimes of the Assad regime that, given far more people have died in the Democratic Republic of Congo over the last decade, their relative silence in regards to that conflict is very suspicious. And that the fact they’ve instead chosen to focus on the crimes of their own government basically makes them indifferent to the suffering of the Congolese, and hypocritical.
Or maybe he’ll be telling Russians protesting the Russian invasion of Crimea that, because it’s been relatively bloodless to date, they might be better served focusing on the crimes being committed by Israel in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, and the fact they don’t makes them indifferent to the suffering of Palestinians, and hypocritical.
Because that’s the basic internal logic of his argument. And if it’s good for the goose, then surely it should be good for the gander as well.
Or, y’know, maybe he’s just trying to deflect from his own apologetics for the criminal invasion-cum-mass murder in Iraq, and various other grubby Western wars, by continuing to jab his blood stained little finger at people far less complicit in major atrocities than he is.