I emailed Rashid Khalidi earlier about McCain's suggestion that going to his going-away party was like attending a neo-Nazi event, and he emailed back just now that while he's not talking to the press himself, Harpers writer Scott Horton had today rebutted "a few of the stupider and more outrageous things said about me."
He referred me to Horton's defense.
Horton goes after Khalidi's National Review critics, whom McCain is following, on several specific points -- that he was a PLO spokesman, founder of a Chicago social service group, or Obama family babysitter -- and concludes:
Of course, Khalidi has been involved in Palestinian causes. [National Review writer Andrew] McCarthy ought to ask John McCain about that, because McCain and Khalidi appear to have some joint interests, and that fact speaks very well of both of them. Indeed, the McCain"Khalidi connections are more substantial than the phony Obama"Khalidi connections McCarthy gussies up for his article. The Republican party’s congressionally funded international-networking organization, the International Republican Institute"long and ably chaired by John McCain and headed by McCain’s close friend, the capable Lorne Craner"has taken an interest in West Bank matters. IRI funded an ambitious project, called the Palestine Center, that Khalidi helped to support.
Khalidi served on the Center’s board of directors. The goal of that project, shared by Khalidi and McCain, was the promotion of civic consciousness and engagement and the development of democratic values in the West Bank. Of course, McCarthy is not interested in looking too closely into the facts, because they would not serve his shrill partisan objectives.
I have a suggestion for Andy McCarthy and his Hyde Park project. If he really digs down deep enough, he will come up with a Hyde Park figure who stood in constant close contact with Barack Obama and who, unlike Ayers and Khalidi, really did influence Obama’s thinking about law, government, and policy. He is to my way of thinking a genuine radical. His name is Richard Posner, and he appears to be the most frequently and positively cited judge and legal academic in… National Review.
By Ben Smith 12:44 PM