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Ron Paul and his gang of foreign policy cranks

Recently I posted about how former Republican Congressman Ron Paul had recruited former Democratic Congressman Dennis Kucinich for his anti-interventionist Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.

It gets worse. Much worse.

Writing at The Daily Beast, James Kirchick– who in 2008 exposed poisonous bigotry in Paul-sponsored newsletters– notes:

As difficult as it was then to believe that Paul had no role in the production of newsletters written in his own name and which netted his family over $1 million per year, or that he did not even know who was writing them, it is now impossible to extricate Paul from the extremist views of his hangers-on. That is because Paul, who retired from Congress in January, has decisively thrown in his lot with a bevy of conspiracy theorists, cranks, and apologists for some of the worst regimes on the planet.

Among those joining Ron Paul’s institute are:

–John Laughland of the amusingly named British Helsinki Human Rights Group. We focused on them back in 2004, when they sided with Ukraine’s Kremlin-backed president Viktor Yanukovych, who attempted to steal the 2004 election. They have also denied the Srebrenica genocide while supporting Slobodan Milosevic, Aleksander Lukashenko and basically every other undemocratic regime backed by Russia.

–9/11 conspiracy theorists Andrew Napolitano and Eric Margolis.

–Neo-Confederate Walter Block, who blames America’s current foreign policy difficulties on Abraham Lincoln.

–Michael Scheuer, a former CIA officer, who has called American Jews a “fifth column” aimed at subverting American foreign policy in the interests of Israel.

Asked about some of these people and their beliefs, the institute’s executive director Daniel McAdams replied: “Dr. Paul is not horrified by diversity.”

Kirchick observes:

It’s a strange definition of “diversity” that has no moral qualms associating itself with genocide denial and apologies for tyranny. But it cannot surprise anyone at this point that the sorts of things that horrify decent people do not horrify Ron Paul.

Ron Paul’s son Rand, a senator from Kentucky, is considered a leading (if so far unannounced) candidate for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination– he leads an early poll in New Hampshire.

Rand Paul delivered a foreign policy speech in February in which, The Washington Post reported, “the differences between he and his father were much more about tone and emphasis than about substance.”

With this collection of cranks surrounding his father, he may need to make a clean break.

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