Christopher Hitchens


When it comes to Iraq and the war that took place following the bombing of the World Trade Centers in 2001, Hitchens largely supported the invasion and began using the term "islamofascism" as a means of describing a link between specific idealogical characteristics of current Islamist movements and fascist movements that were at their strongest in Europe during the early 20th century.

Many of his critics believed that these views clashed with his standard political ideologies and placed him as a neoconservative. However, Christopher Hitchens denied this entirely, stating that "I'm not any kind of conservative."

A few years later, in 2004, Hitchens saw that many neoconservatives did in fact support the act of the U.S. placing troops in Iraq and modified his beliefs to a certain extent where he then agreed that he is on the same side of neoconservatives in regards to modern foreign policy issues. It is because of the Iraq War that Christopher Hitchens basically agreed with President George W. Bush and much of what he said to justify the war in Iraq, despite the fact that the political views of Hitchens leaned far to the left in most aspects.

Hitchens was asked about his views on the five year anniversary of the invasion of Iraq and if he now believed that he was wrong. The column he wrote for Slate stated that:

"We were already deeply involved in the life-and-death struggle of that country, and March 2003 happens to mark the only time that we ever decided to intervene, after a protracted and open public debate, on the right side and for the right reasons. This must, and still does, count for something."
As such, it's clear that Hitchens still held his beliefs on the Iraq War to be the right ones.

It's important to remember that Christopher Hitchens unequivocally and demonstrably opposed the Vietnam War. In essence, he was never for or against war entirely. It came down to the intrinsic details of each conflict that arose. One of the primary reasons as to why Hitchens felt the need to support the Iraq War was due to the presence in Iraq of the Saddam Hussein regime.

His thoughts of Saddam were made quite clear in his later years, with him at one point stating that:

"Some peaceniks clear their throats by saying that, of course, they oppose Saddam Hussein as much as anybody, though not enough to support doing anything about him."
Hitchens apparent hatred of Saddam Hussein partially stemmed from the video Hitchens was once shown when Hussein was being sworn into power by the Ba'ath Party central committe. This video displayed the abhorrent cruelty of Saddam, so much so that Hitchens remarked "I am not sure that even Beria or Himmler would have had the nerve and ingenuity and cruelty to come up with that."