Fox white nationalist (there, I’ve been redundant and repeated myself) Tucker Carlson once called Iraqis “semiliterate primitive monkeys,” managing to be racist, anti-Arab and Islamophobic all at once.
Now Carlson is posing as an anti-racist. Funny thing, though. He isn’t out there apologizing for his racism against Iraqis.
Then there was that time when Carlson advocated for the odious anti-Semitic “replacement theory” that rich Jews are bringing in immigrants to the US to “replace” “white people:”
“Now, I know that the left and all the little gatekeepers on Twitter become literally hysterical. If you use the term replacement, if you suggest that the Democratic Party is trying to replace the current electorate, the voters now casting ballots with new people, more obedient voters from the third world, but they become hysterical, because that’s, that’s what’s happening actually.”
“Democrats” (he means rich Jews) are not bringing in immigrants to replace “white people.”
Carlson is objecting to Gen. Mark Milley’s remarks before Congress in which the general said he wanted to understand the roots of white rage.
“Hard to believe that man wears a uniform. He’s that unimpressive.
Notice he never defined white rage, and we should know what it is. What is white rage?
Well . . . it’s one of those diseases that only affect people with certain melanin levels. It’s a race-specific illness.”
This sort of allegation is called gaslighting, an attempt to convince the victim that they heard something different than they did.
Milley was not saying that only whites suffer from rage. He was saying that some whites suffer from rage, and he wants to understand why. One of the whites who suffers from rage is Tucker Carlson. I know why he does. It is a very good paycheck for a privileged white trust fund baby, and it also helps his bosses, the Murdochs, whip up further white rage.
Since Carlson says he doesn’t know what white rage is, here’s a clip that might illustrate the phenomenon for him. Some white rage involves attacking and brutalizing the police, as at the Capitol insurrection:
“So Mark Milley reads Mao to understand Maoism, he reads communists to understand communism. But, interestingly, he doesn’t read white supremacists to understand white supremacy. Why not? Go to the source. He’d be fired for that instantly, and that’s the one thing he doesn’t want. So he reads about White rage as if it’s totally real. It’s a medical condition.”
Carlson’s twisted logic is on full display here.
First, he accuses Milley of not reading the white supremacists in the same way he read Mao, to understand the enemy. So he seems to be admitting that white supremacy exists and is an enemy of the United States just as Maoism was. And he admits that supremacists write pamphlets justifying their ideology.
Then he says that Milley would be fired for reading those white supremacist tracts.
Then he denies that white rage exists at all.
But if it doesn’t exist, what drives the white supremacists? If it doesn’t exist, why did Tucker demand Milley read them?
It is a clear sign of the decline of the American Right that where once it would have lambasted Milley for reading Mao and Marx, it now skewers him for not also having read Timothy McVeigh.
Why does Milley care about white rage? It is a problem in his own ranks. In 2017 at Charlottesville, the Neo-Nazi who rammed his car into Heather Heyer and killed her for protesting Fascism had tried to join the U.S. Army and washed out of basic training.
Travis Tritton wrote at the Washington Examiner at the time,
” The Army chief of staff, Gen. Mark Milley, said early Wednesday morning his service will not tolerate “racism, extremism or hatred” among its soldiers and that it is “against our values and everything we stood for since 1775.”
This week, it was learned that the man accused of driving a vehicle into counterprotesters, killing one of them, failed out of Army basic training two years ago.”
The killing of Heather Heyer, about which Carlson has never complained, might just be an example of the white rage he insists does not exist (or which he insists does not exist on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays, but the rancid pamphlets of which he demands we read on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays).
Carlson then went for the big ratings with a schoolboy rant against Milley, “He is not just a pig, he is stupide.”
Wikipedia informs us,
“Milley graduated from Princeton University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in politics in 1980 after completing a 185-page-long senior thesis titled “A Critical Analysis of Revolutionary Guerrilla Organization in Theory and Practice”. Milley also holds a Master of Arts degree in international relations from Columbia University and another Master of Arts degree in national security and strategic studies from the Naval War College. He is also an attendee of the MIT Center for International Studies Seminar XXI National Security Studies Program.”
I’ve lectured at the Seminar XXI Program and only the brightest and most promising young officers are even invited.
So, Princeton BA and MAs from Columbia and the Naval War College.
There are things Milley can be criticized for, including his stroll in combat fatigues with Trump for the Bible photo op. His intelligence, however, is not one of them.
Carlson was kicked out of a Swiss boarding school, did a BA at Trinity College, then applied to join the CIA but was rejected. Maybe not the brightest bulb in the chandelier.
Also, Milley is a decorated war hero whereas Carlson is a pampered chickenhawk.
In the end, Carlson’s fit of pique is based on the position that criticizing white supremacy is a form of racism. The illogic and bad faith of this position reeks like the garbage outside the Fox “News” studio in New York. Even worse, it reeks like the garbage inside the Fox studios.
Editor’s Note: This essay originally appeared on June 27, 2021, on Informed Comment: Thoughts on the Middle East, History and Religion, a website featuring commentary by Professor Juan Cole. It was reproduced here with the consent of Professor Cole.