Reports that an estimated 2,000 Europeans have joined jihadists fighting for territory in Syria and Iraq are a reminder that feelings of loyalty are not givens and can be diverted away from one’s place of origin.
Rudy Giuliani has made much of his time as mayor of New York, but a growing number of his former lieutenants are speaking out about his dictatorial ways. As one former city commissioner put it: “People used to say that if Mayor Koch said, ‘Let’s kill all 12-year-olds, everyone working around him would freely tell him, ‘You’re crazy,’ but if Mayor Giuliani said it, then everyone would say, ‘Brilliant, Rudy! Have you thought of killing 13-year-olds, too?’ ”
Loyalty to the Bush administration trumped qualifications and know-how among the people sent to rebuild postwar Iraq. Guess who screened the candidates? James O’Beirne, husband of the National Review’s Kate O’Beirne.
As Andrew Sullivan says, “so many pundits married to so many party officials - it gets hard to keep them straight at times.”