The Unz Review: An Alternative Media Selection
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Reading John Derbyshire, Sam Francis, and Israel Shamir
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As a webzine specializing in providing convenient access to controversial and marginalized writers and thinkers, whether of the Right or Left, we are very pleased to announce that we have made arrangements to include the works of John Derbyshire, Israel Shamir, and Sam Francis, all of whom at one time or another were purged for their provocative words.

Derbyshire is probably the best known of these, at least to American readers, and suffered his fate most recently, having been fired a couple of years ago as a longtime and popular National Review columnist for making controversial remarks elsewhere on the sort of racial issues that often constitute the “third rail” in American public life. One of the oddities of his fate was that over the decades, a large number of other NR writers seem to have made similar or even far more egregious remarks, but remain gainfully employed at that publication. Indeed, about a year after the Derb’s defenestration, the celebrated Victor Davis Hanson wrote a column making almost identical arguments, and did so on the NR website itself, but without any apparent negative consequences. Presumably having “paleoconservative leanings” means that one lacks a supportive NR faction, while one’s ideological opponents are always looking for an excuse to attack and destroy.

Twenty or thirty years ago, purged pundits simply disappeared down the memory hole, but the Internet now provides a variety of alternate outlets, though usually less well paying ones, and NR‘s loss quickly became VDare‘s gain, as Derb continued providing his perspectives in that webzine. We are happy to now have been authorized to republish his columns going forward, although with a few days of time-delay for the full text and are also republishing his older columns in restricted form.

A very similar fate for very similar reasons had earlier been suffered by the late Sam Francis, one of the leading paleoconservative theorists in America, and a top opinion editor at The Washington Times, then a leading national force in the conservative movement. Despite winning numerous journalist awards and serving as an adviser to the presidential campaigns of Pat Buchanan, Francis lost most of his public outlets when he was purged for having the wrong associations, and his large body of accumulated writings have mostly disappeared from the Internet. We are very glad to have been authorized to make these available on our website by the Fitzgerald Griffin Foundation that controls their rights. So far we have located almost 500 of his columns and hope to add additional ones in the future.

ORDER IT NOW

Finally, over the weekend we published another long discussion of the Russia-Ukraine conflict by Israel Shamir, a piece that attracted a good deal of discussion and comment. As always, his analysis provided a wealth of important factual detail totally missing from the MSM coverage, and although I myself do not have the expertise to evaluate his claims, but many of them seem to ring true and certainly appear reasonably plausible. I first encountered Shamir a few years ago when his columns began occasionally appearing on Counterpunch, and in several cases was very impressed when his views on Russia and President Putin were completely borne out while those of our entire corpus of elite American media pundits were not. As I once noted to the late Alexander Cockburn, it’s an odd situation when some Internet commentator totally unknown to me is directly contradicting the on-the-scene reporting of the Gray Lady’s Moscow Bureau and I tend to believe the former is correct, which indeed turned out to be the case.

We are now providing hundreds of Shamir’s past articles, covering a range of controversial subjects, mostly on the Israel/Palestine conflict and on Russia.

In each of these cases, individual readers can judge for themselves on a case-by-case basis the cogency and credibility of the arguments being presented, but simply having them available for exploration should help provide a very welcome corrective to the ideological framework maintained by our organs of the elite mainstream media.

 
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  1. It is no secret that political correctness has destroyed freedom of speech. In publications, in universities, in the work place. Racism is the usual charge. But I always say this: IT IS NEVER RACIST TO TELL THE TRUTH. Religious belief and opinion are also out of bounds. IT IS NEVER BIGOTRY TO TELL THE TRUTH. Real or imagined sexual comment is also out of bounds, but I have no slogan for that.

    There is, however, nothing wrong with simple civility. Some people are vulgar and vicious and think free speech will save them. We need people with common sense, not ideological blinders, to know the difference.

  2. fnn says:

    I hope Sam Francis’ Chronicles material will once again be made available.

  3. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Ok…this website is getting weirder. What i’m most interested in at this point is what Unz’s political views are.

  4. anon • Disclaimer says:

    Sam Francis and John Derbyshire are, at minimum, credible writers with an interesting and relevant point of view. Same with Steve Sailer.

    Israel Shamir is an embarrassment to anybody that associates with him. Even the notoriously anti-Israel writer Norman Finkelstein says of Shamir: “He has invented his entire personal history. Nothing he says about himself is true.” Ali Abuimah and Hussein Ibish, notorious pro-Palestinians, thought he was anti-Semitic.

    Either Unz is ignorant (but 214 IQ!) or he’s upset at his (Jewish) parents for having him out of wedlock and denying him a normal childhood home and he’s lashing out. Either way, an embarrassment.

  5. NB says: • Website

    It’s not some aberration that Unz is proud to be adding Israel Shamir as a columnist; this is exactly what I’ve come to expect from Unz.

    To be clear, I disagree with your characterizations of Derbyshire and Sailer. (I don’t know who Sam Francis was.)

  6. anon: be careful or you will accused of character assassination in the case of Shamir. Some here regard bizarre views as signs of intelligence!

  7. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    NB, point taken about Shamir, but please take your jewish victimology elsewhere. From reading your twitter, it’s quite clear that almost all of your political views are motivated by the maxim “is it good for the jews?” As an american citizen, you should be asking “is it good for America?”

    If you won’t accept my advice, then please move to israel.

    Thank you.

  8. Dennis Dale says: • Website

    Ok…this website is getting weirder. What i’m most interested in at this point is what Unz’s political views are.

    No, it got weirder with that comment. Who cares what Ron Unz’ political views are? If he declares the site devoted to marginalized but worthy authors then that’s how the site shall be judged. And pulling Sam Francis from the memory hole is noble cause enough to endure Mr. Shamir, even if he was all anon and NB say he is–cause anyone who’s full of it is only a danger to stupid people.

  9. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    “No, it got weirder with that comment. Who cares what Ron Unz’ political views are? If he declares the site devoted to marginalized but worthy authors then that’s how the site shall be judged. And pulling Sam Francis from the memory hole is noble cause enough to endure Mr. Shamir, even if he was all anon and NB say he is–cause anyone who’s full of it is only a danger to stupid people.”

    Credibility matters. If I say worthwhile things and surround myself with malicious, dishonest, hateful people, I should not be surprised when others discount the worthwhile things I say.

  10. Unpopular, marginalized opinion may be interesting or may be dumb. There should be a sifting out among such opinion: keep those views which are stimulating, challenging, interesting; excise those which are simply the product of hatred, paranoia, or insanity. It should be possible to do this.

  11. Glad to learn that The Unz Review will be including the writings of John Derbyshire and Sam Francis.

    Why not consider doing the same for the writings of the late great Joseph Sobran? The rights to them are also probably held by that same Fitzgerald Griffin Foundation.

  12. A good example of what I mean is the contributions of Mike Whitney. Clearly paranoid.

  13. Dennis Dale says: • Website

    Unpopular, marginalized opinion may be interesting or may be dumb. There should be a sifting out among such opinion: keep those views which are stimulating, challenging, interesting; excise those which are simply the product of hatred, paranoia, or insanity. It should be possible to do this.

    Not just possible but easy–you can read something else with a mere click of the mouse. Beyond that, what are we talking about? Oh, right, the “sifting” of opinion, which is really about who chooses the screen. Me, I like mine a little rawer.

    But why is it the language is the same, whether it’s progressives or rightists seeking to purge the offensive: “hateful”, “malicious”, “insanity”, etc? If Shamir is full of it–and not having read him I don’t pretend to know (but his recent article here seems at least devoid of malice or mental illness)–then submit him to a proper drubbing in comments. Then his inclusion here exposes him to criticism he might not otherwise receive, what with so much of the Internet made up of little echo-chambers.

  14. Voltaire says:

    Boy, just the mention of Israel Shamir’s name makes the Israel first-ers appear out of no where and start frothing at the mouth. Shamir certainly must be doing something right to elicit such venom! This also means that Shamir’s writings must be particularly effective and deserve a much wider audience.

    The reason for this absolute hatred should be obvious. After all, he, along with Gilad Atzmon, are at the absolute top of the of ADL/SPLC hate lists.

    I think that Shamir and Atzmon must be proud of these listings as well they should.

    (Gatekeeper) Ali Abuimah and (Gatekeeper) Hussein Ibish. Aren’t these the same guys who also criticized Gilad Atzmon’ book “The Wandering Who” even though neither of them had actually read it. Nothing unique here. This was done merely to appease their controllers and to protect the the funding they receive from George Soros/Israel affiliated front groups.

    This sort of faux criticism was sort of a remake of the time when leftist icon and Gatekeeper Noam Chomsky was called in to criticize John Mearsheimer’s and Stephen Walt’s book on the Israel lobby on Gatekeeper Amy Goodmans’s show Democracy Now. He also hadn’t bothered to read the book that he felt qualified to criticize and dismiss.

  15. fnn says:

    Boy, just the mention of Israel Shamir’s name makes the Israel first-ers appear out of no where and start frothing at the mouth.

    Funny how nobody cares that he says that both the Holodomor and the Cambodian genocide are Cold War myths created by the Western capitalists.

  16. Ron Unz says:

    All this vacuous back-and-forth about the credibility of Israel Shamir seems a little silly to me.

    I’ve only read a handful of his articles and those generally seemed quite good, though I noticed a crucial error in one and I was extremely skeptical of his analysis in another. But I certainly can’t vouch for the other 98% of his writings, and I’m certainly too busy with my own work to read them myself.

    Indeed, one reason I was eager to make his archives conveniently available on The Review was so that others could sift through the material and help determine his reliability. I just checked and over 250 of his articles totaling nearly 600,000 words are now just a mouse-click away. So I’d urge the pro-Shamir and anti-Shamir partisans to go at it and assist me in making up my own mind.

  17. There are more than a few unexamined status quo balloons that need puncturing. Having felt betrayed by NRO, the spectacle of them eating their own was not observed without a sense of schadenfreude. In the Derb matter, I thought they all got what they deserved. So whether Shamir or Derbyshire, let’s see if they manage to hoist themselves on their own petard, or someone else’s. As long as there’s more light than heat.

  18. DM says:

    I second the suggestion to include Joe Sobran’s writings. Alexander Cockburn helped Norman Podhoretz and Midge Decter get Sobran fired from National Review by criticizing Sobran for writing a positive piece on Instauration, a magazine edited by Wilmot Robertson. (Wilmot Robertson’s writings would be a good addition as well.)

    Shamir is okay. He sends mixed signals on race. Sometimes he’ll say things like “I’ve never met a racist in my life.” But at another moment he will act like the typical anti-racist hypocritical white progressive by criticizing whites who don’t like all the third world immigration coming into Europe.

    Derbyshire is a bit of a flake.

    The Australian Peter Myers has an interesting website (and mailing list) called Neither Aryan Nor Jew. But like Shamir he tends to be hypocritical on race issues.

  19. On Shamir.
    Why must he, or anyone else, be always right or always wrong? This seems to be the worst sort of ideological straight jacket. Why do so many of the commenters here feel obliged to decide all opinions of a person by a single thumbs up or thumbs down?

    The same person can of course be right about one thing and wrong about another, right at one time and wrong at another.

    Take Henry Kissinger, wrong and criminal on the installation of Pinochet and on the green light for Indonesian actions in East Timor. But right in pursuing Detente and in his evaluation of China, the future of US China relations and the outlook for world peace in his superb book, On China.

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