A North Korean Defector Indirectly Confirms a Coup is Possible

In lieu of a North Korean defector’s recent statements and the collapse of the North’s primary nuclear testing site, my assessment of the North Korea crisis deserves additional commentary.

Using game theory I explained the objective of Kim’s quest for ICBMs has always been to deter America from intervening against him (and not for the sake using them in a suicidal nuclear war with the United States) and to domestically reinforce regime credibility –

At this stage the US and Kim are very close war. To understand why we look at each side’s goals and risk & reward incentive structures.

Kim does not want a war. If he wanted one he would have already used his existing arsenal to start it. Kim sees an ICBM as a deterrent that minimizes the risk his hostile actions invite American attacks by increasing the risk of retaliation for America. Shielded by the deterrent power of future ICBMs Kim can then afford to act more aggressively than ever before even if he never intends to commit suicide by launching a preemptive nuclear attack against America: ICBMs open opportunities for nuclear blackmail against the US, Japan and South Korea in exchange for military and economic concessions and agreements to look the other way at the North’s black market criminal activities.


I have also argued on game theory grounds the more the crisis escalates, the less likely Kim would be to back down for fear of giving an impression of weakness that would invite a military coup

…a new possibility comes into play:  Kim’s generals are incentivized to mount a coup (even if Kim at this point has backed himself too far into a corner to back down)  the more likely war becomes.

Previously, North Korean generals were hugely dissuaded  from mounting a coup against the ruling dynasty by a prisoner’s dilemma – even if their best collective option was to cooperate and plot an overthrow, the great individual risks and uncertainty to each general of getting caught (How would a sincere plotter know there are no informants within the small circle of coup plotters?  How would a sincere plotter know another sincere plotter wouldn’t be caught or change their mind at a key moment?) greatly discouraged such cooperation.

Now that they face a real chance of a nuclear war that will destroy them the risk of organizing a coup becomes more less risky, though by no means a statistical certainty.


My analysis was confirmed by recent statements made by a former North Korean diplomat who defected, Thae Yong Ho.

According to him, the ICBM program is meant primarily to deter America from ever attacking North Korea –

Kim also set forth a policy focused on achieving simultaneous development of the country’s weapons programs and the economy, a way to achieve visible results without engaging in risky economic reforms.

When Kim first took power, he toured the military units along the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ). “What he learned was (there was a) lack of preparedness for a possible war and (a lack of) high spirit, corruption, and obsolete conventional weapons,” Thae revealed, explaining that the nuclear and ballistic missile programs served as motivators for an unenthusiastic army. Thae suggested that an idle army is dangerous, exposing Kim to the threat of a military coup.

More importantly, though, Kim watched what happened in Libya, recognizing the risk of humanitarian intervention in the North Korean regime. He observed closely the Arab Spring incidents, as well as the fall of Muammar Gaddafi. “This had a strong influence on Kim Jong Un,” Thae suggested.

If there were an uprising in North Korea, “there is no doubt that Kim Jong Un would stamp it out mercilessly with his forces, with his tanks,” but that could trigger a response from the U.S. and South Korea. “If Kim is equipped with ICBM tipped with nuclear (warheads) then he can prevent that kind of humanitarian intervention,” Thae explained.


Thae also confirmed my point that Kim’s policies of instilling great fear into his own commanders in order to ward off a coup is deeply dependent on the success of his ICBM program.  The necessity of completing an ICBM program to Kim’s strategy for regime survival makes it very unlikely Kim will agree to nuclear disarmament since he equates disarmament with the destruction of his regime, either at the hands of his generals or by the American military.

Kim learned quickly that while he held the title of leader, many did not see him as the true head of the North Korean state. This realization, coupled with a budding paranoia and distrust, led to a serious change in the young dictator’s political thinking. He purged officials who were considered a threat, including members of his own family, and those that knew and leaked the details of his family history. Kim also targeted officials who lacked enthusiasm for the country’s future.

“He learned that whenever he convened a meeting … maybe 80 or 90 percent of the audience would sleep. So he learned that there was no enthusiasm – even in the elite group – on policy discussions.” Kim reportedly had a senior official executed last year for dozing off during a meeting.

Thae described the purges, which were brutal, as “unprecedented” in North Korean history.

The North Korean leader solidified his rule through a “reign of terror,” as Thae described it. The weapons program is a sign of strength for the regime.


The only item I find surprising is that as recently as 2016 there were still senior North Korean officials willing to nap during Kim’s meetings.  This just proves it is nearly impossible for millenials to be taken seriously, even when the millenial in question is a 32 year old dictator who routinely assassinates his own family members while threatening to plunge Northeast Asia into a nuclear winter.

The last bit of news is no less important.

During the collapse of North Korea’s primary nuclear testing site, 200 North Korean workers were killed.  The site remains a danger because if more of the now-destabilized mountain collapses radiation leaking from the site would spread across Northeast Asia.

It may be the threat of radioactive contamination poisoning Beijing’s already toxic-enough air that prompted China to further tighten its sanctions on North Korea.

The broader implication of this shift is that China may now be reassessing its risk-reward assumptions about the benefits of keeping North Korea as a balance to American power and the risk of further nuclear tests or war causing even greater environmental damage around China’s borders.

If the benefits of supporting North Korea are becoming outweighed by the risks, expect China to shift further against Kim.


23 thoughts on “A North Korean Defector Indirectly Confirms a Coup is Possible”

  1. You’d think it would be that easy.

    But it’s not so.

    Walking away from Kim’s profession is like leaving the mafia: If you manage to get out early enemies still come back looking to collect on past debts.

  2. What do you think of this:

    Thanks for reminding me of ‘mtraven’.

    He just doesn’t want to learn.

    Couple of Jewish references here.

    Those Jewish references jibe perfectly with French and British references – The French are not worried about being ethnically cleansed out of France, the British are not worried about being ethnically cleansed out of Britain, so why should the Jews be concerned if French Jews and British Jews are being cleansed out of France and Britain?

    Ok, this is not quite true. There are a number of French, British, and native Jews such as Melanie Phillips and Mark Steyn who have been sounding the alarm – and for whom Jews get no credit whatsoever from the basketcase American “altright” that keeps demanding our emissaries “Do something”.

    But the warnings go unheeded by establishment French, establishment Britons, and establishment Jews.

    For the Jews, adhering to secular norms has always taken precedence over genuinely Jewish interests.

    This certainly was the case during the Holocaust when establishment Jews like Felix Frankfurter were afraid to so much as ask a perfectly indifferent (perhaps hostile) FDR to do a bit more to halt the Final Solution, or, in the case of secular German Jews, to leave Germany until the last minute. Freud, for example, didn’t leave Austria until the late 1930s.

    Just as Jews barely raised their voice during the Holocaust for fear of what their secular peers may think, establishment Jews today like Dominique Strauss Kahn will not lift a finger to help their own kind so long as he still gets to attend sex parties with other EU elites.

  3. Useful.

    Why would something that late in the game be useful?

    The French Communist Party has been antisemitic since the late 19th century, with a brief hiatus from the status quo after Israel was founded. The centre Left was no better in terms of actions; they were just better at couching it in diplomatic jargon.

    Interesting things are happening in Saudi Arabia – thoughts?

    Too early to say.

    It could be any number of things.

  4. Read it quite a few years ago and it was a powerful indictment.

    I and Moldbug have wasted many, many, years carefully explaining the indictment against Jewish Liberals reads exactly like the rap sheet of crimes committed by gentile Liberals.

    i.e., Dominique Strauss Kahn and Pierre Moscovici think and act exactly or almost exactly like Jean Claude Trichet, Jacques Delors, Jean Monnet, Chirac, Christine Lagarde, Mitterand, and François Holland.

    Was there something inadequate about our so far unchallenged explanation?

    Because if there was a remotely plausible case against my position and Moldbug’ we would have seen someone mention it long ago.

    Obviously, we are not as well informed as you.

    Obviously not, or you would have already told me what the difference is between Strauss Kahn, Moscovici and their Gaullic tranzi counterparts like Jean Claude Trichet.

  5. You sound pissed off; not at us we hope?

    Some context.

    You are the first Jewish person we have ever (to our knowledge) communicated and communicated in depth with.

    However, despite the fact that Israel is a political football in my country the topic of the “Jews” is not one that is on the top of the agenda.

    If you pick history for high school, you have to cover pre-war Germany and the Holocaust, as we did. Apparently, we were the best student the teacher ever had and our essays won the history prize.

    After that, we have read the Dershowitz trilogy; a book about the European medieval persecution of the Jews (the Devil and the Jews); a book on the Palestinian suicide bombers (the Road to Martyrs’ Square) and the book mentioned above. Slim but useful reading.

    To us, Bernard Harrison rigorously explores the charges made against Israel, the pathological thinking and endless hypocrisies of the left and demolishes them. He also shows the clear parallels between old and new AS.

    We have always had a positive view of Jews and of Israel, but we are distant outsiders and so our emotions are not as engaged and it is not something that we spent have a great deal of time reading up on and arguing over.

    Ironically, it was not until UR that we encountered “right-wing” AS. Mostly it showed up in the comments and often it involved yourself arguing with those who defended the ZOG argument.

    Honestly, it was quite disturbing as we had to confront an argument that has, on its face, some plausibility. Plausibility, however, is not the same thing as truth.

    The main challenger for your argument and MM’s is Macdonald’s. The core of his argument rests on the assumption that group selection theory – drawn from biology – is valid. From what we understand of this issue, according to Dawkins, Pinker, Coyne and Dennett, GS is a bust out.

    In short, we think you and MM are right. The phenomenon of leftism occurs without the presence of Jews.

    The use of immigrants in a High Middle Low game occurred in my own country and it had nothing to do with any Jews.

    Bertrand de Jouvenel’s On Power maps out the logic of Power over hundreds of years and, again, the Jews played no part in it. Charles Tilly’s Capital State and Coercion reaches similar conclusions.

    Recently, we were re-reading our notes for a post that makes use of Europe: A History by A.N Davies (who was, incidentally, accused of AS) on the French Revolution and the parallels between the left then and now jumps right out at you. Again, no Jews.

    Even the adoption of Christianity by the Roman Empire had nothing to do with the Jews. It was Constantine and he did this for reasons of power that Jouvenel, Moldbug and Mesquita would understand all too well.

    Then there is Mao’s Cultural Revolution….

    Most people attribute bad things to bad people and not to impersonal causes. Children die of cancer because of bad Karma but not because of bad luck….

    Politics is a mind killer.

    Two final thoughts.

    Kissinger once wrote that a power that seeks absolute security can only lead to absolute insecurity for all other powers. The danger, the paradox and the tragedy is that many liberal-left Jews in America are, rightfully, concerned with their security and they (largely mistakenly and imprudently) fear and hate the gentiles who support and voted for Trump and who support the Alt-Right. However, their support for progressivism and their stout defense of it, along with their invective against Trump and Red State Americans, could well be laying the seeds of their own insecurity. It is a Thucydides trap.

    For instance, we think that part of the reason why Kristol kicked of the Neocon movement was that he sensed the danger to Jews coming from the New Left and Black Militancy. He was right about that. However, the overall result seems to have been self-defeating.

    We don’t know what role our own background as an “Atheist Protestant” has played in shaping our views. A lot of AS seems to have Catholic and Orthodox roots. Luther was a major AS, but beyond that….. (we do you think?).

    Jews have more to fear, much more in fact, from the left. If America ends up with a Democratic One Party State, you can be sure that Israel will goaded every day by black, female Muslims in the Administration and moves will be made to deal with Israel the way South Africa was.

    This will not happen, however. One thing about the Jews is that they don’t eat shit from anyone anymore and Israel is not – rightly – going to surrender.

    If push comes to shove, the Red Gov, backed by Israel, the Egyptian military and the new power emerging in Saudi Arabia, along with Poland, Japan and most of the rest of the world cheering on their support, will move against Blue.

    In any case, that is where we stand.



  6. Kissinger once wrote that a power that seeks absolute security can only lead to absolute insecurity for all other powers.

    Except, like Jews of the interwar period, Jews aren’t meaningfully concerned with their security anymore than Liberal gentiles are.

    The vast majority will pay lip service to it, say they support Israel, etc, but this is all very secondary to copying the urban secular culture they are surrounded by.

    For instance, we think that part of the reason why Kristol kicked of the Neocon movement was that he sensed the danger to Jews coming from the New Left and Black Militancy. He was right about that. However, the overall result seems to have been self-defeating.

    The neocons did not leave any lasting political structures as FDR did with the New Deal, so their opinion is not relevant. The early ones like Irving Kristol were fairly standard Reagan Republicans with a focus on the urban issues of their time. Later ones such as Bill Kristol blew their credibility with Iraq.

    If America ends up with a Democratic One Party State, you can be sure that Israel will goaded every day by black, female Muslims in the Administration and moves will be made to deal with Israel the way South Africa was.

    They already witnessed something like this in the Obama administration but didn’t care. If they did, they had plenty of reason to turn against him in 2012.

    The assumption they care about their security is where your analysis falls apart because it isn’t supported by action.

  7. There are sufficient and decisive reason for liberal Jews to support immigration

    Are you paying any attention to my points?

    I showed, and have links, showing MacDonald’s thesis Jews used immigration in the 1965 act were distortions of MacDonald’s own sources.

    Polls of Jews show they do not support immigration:


    In contrast to many religious leaders, most members think immigration is too high.

    Jews: 50 percent said it is too high; 5 percent said is too low; 22 percent just right.


    The survey asked its Jewish respondents: “A new law in Arizona gives police the power to ask people they’ve stopped to verify their residency status. Supporters say this will help crack down on illegal immigration. Opponents say it could violate civil rights and lead to racial profiling. On balance, do you support or oppose this law?”

    The result was a slim majority in favor of the law: 52 percent to 46 percent.

  8. If Jews support immigration, why is MacDonald seemingly lying about the sources he uses in his immigration chapter:


    For example, Dr. Barry Mehler, an educator at Ferris State University, noted that MacDonald had claimed that “…Jewish opposition to the 1921 and 1924 legislation (to limit immigration) was motivated less by a desire for higher levels of Jewish immigration than by opposition to the implicit theory that America should be dominated by individuals with northern and western European ancestry.” MacDonald based this on a dissertation entitled “American Jewry and United States immigration policy, 1881-1953” by Sheldon Morris Neuringer.[who?] Nueringer’s thesis posited that Jewish opposition in 1921 and 1924 to the anti-immigration legislation at the time was due more to it having the “taint of discrimination and anti-Semitism” as opposed to how it would limit Jewish immigration. Mehler stated “It seems to me Mr. MacDonald is misrepresenting Mr. Neuringer in this case and I posted my query hoping that a historian familiar with the literature might have a judgment on MacDonald’s use of the historical data.” [35]

  9. And not only lying throughout the immigration chapter, but apparently systematic lying throughout the book such as his apparent misquoting of David Irving (the actual quote from Irving’s book Uprising which I looked up merely says Hungarian “functionaries” kept mistresses, did not mention whether the mistresses were gentiles or not, and then goes on to discussing sex surveys of the general Hungarian population).

    It seems MacDonald, who is the only “scholarly” source for the blood libel Jews support immigration, has a problem quoting his sources accurately.

    I assume you have some evasions/half-baked excuse for this apparent lie of his?



    In 2001, David Lieberman, a Holocaust researcher at Brandeis University, wrote a paper entitled Scholarship as an Exercise in Rhetorical Strategy: A Case Study of Kevin MacDonald’s Research Techniques, where he noted how one of MacDonald’s sources, author Jaff Schatz, objected to how MacDonald used his writings to further his premise that Jewish self-identity validates anti-Semitic sentiments and actions. “At issue, however, is not the quality of Schatz’s research, but MacDonald’s use of it, a discussion that relies less on topical expertise than on a willingness to conduct close comparative readings”, Lieberman wrote. Lieberman accused MacDonald of dishonestly made up lines from the work of British Holocaust denier David Irving. Citing Irving’s Uprising, which was published in 1981 for the twenty-fifth anniversary of Hungary’s failed anti-Communist revolution in 1956, MacDonald asserted in the Culture of Critique:

    “The domination of the Hungarian communist Jewish bureaucracy thus appears to have had overtones of sexual and reproductive domination of gentiles in which Jewish males were able to have disproportionate sexual access to gentile females.”

    Lieberman, who noted that MacDonald is not a historian, debunked those assertions, concluding, “(T)he passage offers not a shred of evidence that, as MacDonald would have it, “Jewish males enjoyed disproportionate sexual access to gentile females.”[38]

  10. Comments accusing Jews of supporting immigration will be deleted until you address evidence Kevin MacDonald, who is the one responsible for promulgating this seeming lie, engaged in academic fraud.

    How do you explain those misquotes?

  11. Haven’t read enough of the man to comment on your charge of lying and don’t want to address it.

    However, from what we have read it seems crystal clear that he is an Anti-Semite.

    [Edited by the moderator]

  12. I will not answer any further questions about Jews and immigration until I get a straight answer on whether he’s lying about what his sources said.

    The accusation is no longer going to be entertained when the evidence is potentially fraudulent. Especially after I spent years bringing up alleged academic fraud by MacDonald at Moldbug’s and never got a straight answer once about them.

    To proceed, the evidence will have to be validated, otherwise I’m dismissing the accusation.

  13. Ok, we have read the material provided and have done some extra curricular reading as well, along with some thought.

    Short answer:

    Yes, he is lying.

    Long answer:

    Lieberman’s analysis and evaluation is sound in our judgement. The only criticism we have is that it does not go far enough.

    A long time ago, we read a piece by Christopher Hitchens on Irving and we looked at him first, after reading Lieberman. We read the Wiki page and then read long sections from the case that historian, Richard J. Evans constructed:


    From what we have read, it is powerful, rigorous and utterly demolishes Irving. The man is a Holocaust denier and a Hitler apologist. Beyond that, he cannot be trusted as a “historian” or as a man.

    After that, we were interested in learning when CoC was written and we would then compare it to the date of the Irving libel case. To our surprise, CoC came out three years after the start of the trial. However, Irving had been in bad odor for at least a decade or more before that. Furthermore, we were also shocked to learn that Irving invited MacDonald to speak at the hearing (as an expert witness?).

    In addition, MacDonald read the case that Evans constructed and yet still agreed to support Irving. Here is what he said:

    “I should say, however, that after I agreed to testify on behalf of Irving, I was horrified to read the report written by Cambridge University historian Richard Evans and several research associates on Irving. This massive report, written on behalf of the defense, is a scathing summary of alleged misrepresentations and misinterpretations by Irving spanning over his entire career. I expressed my reservations to Irving and he assured me that he would be able to defend himself against these allegations (see Appendix 2). He stated that “I have a clean conscience, but I am not sure how to bring that across” and then provided me with several detailed examples where the Evans report misrepresented his writings. As a result, I felt that he was playing by the rules of scholarly discourse. Nevertheless, the judge clearly agreed with Evans that Irving had indeed engaged in scholarly malfeasance, and I have no reason to doubt his judgment on this matter.”

    Yet later, he says:

    “Having read almost the entire Evans report, I was convinced that in fact Evans had nothing positive at all to say about Irving. Indeed, Evans reiterates Lipstadt’s assertion that Irving is not a historian at all. Again, I was confirmed in my belief that testifying for Irving was entirely appropriate.”


    Now, from these facts, we make the inference that MacDonald’s use of Irving as a source reveals something distinctly bad about him. When we relate these facts and the inference to the wider context of Irving’s work and of MacDonald’s the judgement we form of MacDonald’s intellectual and moral character is negative.

    Here are two additional reasons for this claim:

    1: Despite reading Evans and stating that he had “no reason to doubt” the judge’s “judgement” he later claims that it was still “entirely appropriate” for him to have supported Irving.

    Inference: he willingly supported and had no regrets in supporting Irving; therefore, either he did not care or he choose to support Irving because he viewed him as an ally.

    2: Despite his view (by implication of his agreement with the judge) that Irving had made many “misrepresentations” and “misinterpretations” “throughout his career” he still, three years later, made use of Irving as a source for his claim concerning Hungarian Jews. (Again, a source that was of slipshod character).

    Inference: gross intellectual irresponsibility and conduct that is ethically indefensible.

    Lieberman’s criticism of Irving’s sources and the judgments he forms from them are sound and one does not have to be a historian to understand this. Nevertheless, the claim that MacDonald advances, which are supposed to be based on Irving’s work, are not only not supported by the sources but, at least, are misrepresentations of it.

    However, this judgment is a very low bar. Given the context of the work, the character of the man (Irving) who supplied the source and the nature of the claim, MacDonald has acted irresponsibly. It is an inflammatory, provocative, libel. As this is supposed to be a scholarly work, MacDonald’s claim is evidence of conduct unbecoming of a scholar.

    Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence and claims of the nature that MacDonald made here must be supported by strong evidence. Since the claim is inflammatory, MacDonald also had an ethical responsibility to get the facts as much as he had an epistemic one. Indeed, when placed within the context of all of MacDonald’s work and the history of antisemitism his claim here is grossly irresponsible and partisan.

    This is but one strand or one issue, however. Nevertheless, as the saying goes “birds of a feather flock together”, one has to now doubt the intentions, arguments and evidence of MacDonald’s work as a whole regarding Jews.

    In short, the man can no longer be trusted as a scholar on this issue. This is the conclusion we have formed after reviewing the evidence and reflecting upon it.

    Is he lying?

    A lie is an intentionally stated falsehood.

    We think, however, that MacDonald’s sins are worse than mere lying however. We have argued that he has acted ethically and intellectually irresponsibly; that he has chosen to build his claim upon the work of a man who is clearly a Nazi; one whose work is riddled with fraud, abuse and grave errors and whose sources (on this issue) are only “anecdotal”. MacDonald then builds on that weak and dubious foundation a claim that is not supported by the text for nefarious and prejudicial purposes.

    In addition, we also find fault with MacDonald’s “weaselly” rhetoric and irresponsible use of logical qualifiers. It is our belief that if MacDonld was made to defend himself, his rhetoric allows him a means of “plausible deniability”.

    The claim:

    ““The domination of the Hungarian communist Jewish bureaucracy thus appears to have had overtones of sexual and reproductive domination of gentiles in which Jewish males were able to have disproportionate sexual access to gentile females.””

    We note the words “appears”, “overtones”, “disproportionate” and the logical connective “thus”.

    For ethically serious charges, one must use clear, unambiguous language.

    Correct example: We put it to you that X is a serial child rapist and this court will demonstrate this grave charge with copious fact and rigorous logic and you, the jury, will form a judgment that the defendant is guilty beyond all responsible doubt.

    Incorrect example: Well, it perhaps seems – at least to me anyway – that it may look like X has acted in ways that have overtones of improper and potentially criminal behavior regarding children; at least, that was my impression from what I was told by Y even though they did not allege this, at least not directly, but which, indeed, left me with that impression and it is this impression, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, that we wish you to also form.

    What does MacDonald mean by the word “thus”? What kind of argument is this logical connective supposed to be operating in?

    Is it a deductive argument?


    Is it an abductive argument?


    If it is an argument then, it must be an inductive one.

    Let’s assume that his inference is one drawn from a sample of sexual acts.

    Firstly, as Lieberman argues, the evidence provided by Irving is not only insufficient to support MacDonald’s claim but the claim that Irving himself makes.

    Irving is using anecdote; he is not using any social science statistics; indeed, he does not even have a body of testimony. Finally, the claim made by the factory worker is dubious because the factory worker would not be in a position to know.

    Thus, there is not even a premise from which a conclusion can be drawn from.

    The alternative explanation, at best, is that Macdonald assumed, given his background “knowledge”, that Jewish males were having disproportionate access to gentile females because “this is how Jews behave”. At worst, however, MacDonald simply made up the claim for his own nefarious purposes.


    Firstly, we apologize for giving off a bad vibe and to appear evasive. We confess that we find this stuff “creepy” and our reading has only reinforced this feeling. This is one of the very few areas that we find ourselves uncomfortable with. By that, we mean the Nazis and, secondly, the overall claims of MacDonald. We told you earlier that it was not until UR that we encountered “right-wing” antisemitism. The feeling we initially had was one of discomfort, for it “appeared” to contradict what we believed and what we have been schooled to believe.

    Again, to use our favorite example, George Soros is a character that fits the worst kind of stereotype of Jews. He is a man that could have come from Nazi version of a James Bond novel.

    We admit that we have reluctance to read MacDonald in a deep way, but we tried to get the overall jist of what he was saying.

    Now that we have read a little deeper, thanks to your prodding, we see him in a very different light.

    A Jewish person could only conclude, given the nature of MacDonald’s own work, that MacDonald sees Jews as an existential enemy and can thus only return the favor in kind.

    MacDonald’s work is, therefore, by definition, antisemitic. It is antisemtic because, firstly, it ascribes properties to Jews that have a long history, though now put in the language of evolution (is this not what the Nazis did?).

    But what is really dangerous and difficult in MacDonald is that his work does have plausible elements within it.

    For instance, there is the work of Paul Gottfried. See:


    Yet, as he himself notes, the issue is complex and not at all one-sided:





    Gottfried disagrees with MacDonald and does not blame all Jews. However, he does say:

    “Verbeeten is examining the general cultural and social influence of a particular ethnic subgroup, not the atypical behavior of individuals who form limiting cases. One might also expect, all things being equal, that Jewish refugees from the Nazis would exhibit sympathy for the Left as the presumed enemy of the enemy from whom they fled.

    Yet the general trend is there.”


    “The story of Eastern European Jews who immigrated to America in the beginning of the twentieth century is a story of “self-marginalization.” The more dramatically Eastern European Jews progress socio-economically, the more strenuously they identify with “marginalized groups” and seek to undermine the white Christian majority population. And though he takes care to guard against charges of being Politically Incorrect, David R. Verbeeten’s The Politics of Non-Assimilation: Three Generations of Eastern European Jews in the United States in the Twentieth Century (De Kalb: NIU Press, 2017) is a goldmine of sociological evidence revealing this critically important phenomenon which so many scholars are happy to ignore.”

    So this is a difficult intellectual, ethical, political and emotional problem and it is one that non-Jews find very difficult speaking about.

    Earlier, we mentioned our discomfort over discovering MacDonald (and Gottfried for that matter) and our discomfort is the feeling of creeping horror over the possibility that some of the world’s most intelligent, wealthy and powerful people have it in for YOU. So, there is both horror but also the first feelings of paranoia but also anger at (felt) betrayal and mounting despair at the possibility.

    But these are emotions.

    One has to carefully consider the matter and to do that one has to discipline one’s emotions. This, for many people, is easier said than done. In a different post, you said that what happens is “confirmation bias” and this, indeed, is playing a role in the matter. However, for us, there is also an element of tragedy – a Thucydidean tragedy.

    What can be done?

    Well, the thing that must be done is to talk. That is what we are doing here and we thank you for that because we are learning things and sharing perspectives that we would not be able to see otherwise. You have helped us see MacDonald more clearly than before by forcing us to look.


  14. Lieberman’s analysis and evaluation is sound in our judgement. The only criticism we have is that it does not go far enough.

    This is why I insisted on halting the entire conversation on this point.

    David Irving’s malfeasance is isolated to himself and his own little island of Holocaust denialism.

    The dubious quality of MacDonald’s work, however, poses a broader problem that extends to the American altright and paleo right because MacDonald’s arguments – unlike Irving’s – have been willfully made the center of well over 90% of all negative altright and paleocon comments about Jews.

    Paleocons, it seems to me, have tried to camouflage their on-the-sly endorsement of MacDonald’s work with a pseudo-intellectual “good cop” routine to contrast themselves with MacDonald’s “bad cop”. As the altright continues its spiral on Twitter into Neonazi idiocracy, MacDonald’s theories are supported without anything resembling the finely-worded qualifications of paleoconservatives.

    Nevertheless, it remains true that paleocons are guilty of enabling, defending, and promoting MacDonald.

    By doing so, they are risking their own, already shaky, credibility by tying it to a delusional charlatan whose defining work can be easily annihilated by any below than average researcher who does nothing more than turn the quotes of MacDonald’s source material against MacDonald.

    The altright might not have any moral or intellectual credibility left to defend, but paleoconservatives have invested time maintaining an air of intellectual and moral superiority over the rest of the American right.

    So long as they choose to remain tied to MacDonald, they will be (rightfully) tied to the quality of his work.

    In addition to this risk to their credibility, they also waste time antagonizing Jewish talent.

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