Today in the Grudge Match: Buckley vs. Hitchens

William F. Buckley Jr. is out and about and is peeved that Christopher Hitchens is picking on poor Henry Kissinger.
If there was anyone on earth I could pick who does not need my rhetorical assistance, it would be Christopher Hitchens. But examining in such detail the work of an esteemed fellow as Mr. Buckley was a challenge I could not resist nonetheless.
I present the full text of his complaint in The National Review here in my traditional highlighted quotes, with my own rebuttals and commentary interspersed. (Dare I use the ‘F’ word?)
The War on Kissinger
He is the enemy, for reasons many of them obvious.
The desire to do something about Henry Kissinger is, for many, a popular pursuit; for some, an obsession. He is the enemy, for reasons many of them obvious: He is a Harvard intellectual who served Richard Nixon intimately and survived. And of course he was at the right hand of the president for three years of the reviled war in Vietnam. Resentment is certainly fostered by facial expressions seen as registering Shylockean self-satisfaction, and verbal adroitness that sometimes seems to be bent on squaring circles, a demeanor that enemies will liken to that of the Vicar of Bray, and advocating what they see as Johnnie Cochran explaining the innocence of O. J. Simpson.

He’s a pompous, irritating git, yes. But I don’t think that’s truly the reason many people think he belongs behind bars. There are a great many annoying individuals in the world; only a select few deserve actual criminal punishment.
The latest expeditionary force against the enemy was initiated by Christopher Hitchens, a learned and resourceful moralist of exhibitionist inclinations who picks his enemies with brio and, a few years ago, undertook a book to the effect that Mother Teresa was a mountebank. The Kissinger offensive was done in Harper’s magazine, and became a book. The call, no less, was to declare Henry Kissinger a war criminal and urge international courts to try him for, among other things, murder and kidnapping.
That was a tall order of Hitchens, perhaps even outdoing the call to defrock Mother Teresa

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