ROSIE O’DONNELL says she loves George Bush.
"I am in full support of the President…" she announced on a Los Angeles radio talk show, Thursday. "Honey, I love him now! He is our President. We are at war."
With these words, Rosie joined the growing ranks of leftwing celebrities who have ostentatiously embraced patriotism in recent weeks.
I suppose it’s natural to rally around the flag during wartime. But there’s something about these born-again jingoes that gives me the creeps.
Part of the problem is that I just don’t believe them.
Entertainers like Rosie have their careers to consider. They cannot afford to end up like Bill Maher, the host of ABC’s Politically Incorrect, whose disrespectful remarks about the military cost him advertisers and affiliates.
More to the point, leftists have always been experts at lying low and blending in with the crowd. In post-September 11 America, waving the flag is the surest camouflage available.
In his autobiography Radical Son, former ‘60s radical David Horowitz describes how his parents concealed their Communist agenda beneath a smokescreen of innocuous, civic activism.
Like agents of a secret service, they operated on a "need to know" basis, making it a rule never to discuss their real politics, to identify their associates, or to reveal their Party activities to any outsider… To a stranger encountering them, they were idealists and registered Democrats who did their citizen part, volunteering in tenants’ councils and PTAs, and working for goals that ordinary people could understand and support. But these organizations were fronts for other, more serious purposes, serving them as recruiting grounds for the agendas they only revealed later on.
Horowitz’s parents referred to this charade as their "mass work" bonding with the masses by pretending to share their views.
Such "mass work" was especially crucial during wartime. The Communist Party secretly despised Franklin D. Roosevelt as an evil capitalist. But it sought the people’s trust by pretending to admire America’s beloved war leader.
Is Rosie O’Donnell playing the same game? When she praises George Bush, is she too engaging in "mass work?"
It’s a smart move for leftists to play the hawk right now. It wins public sympathy, keeps them off FBI watchlists and obscures their anti-American agenda.
But while they’re waving flags and screaming "Death to bin Laden!", rest assured, they are watching and waiting. One day soon they will spot weakness. And then they will pounce.
It happened in Russia 84 years ago.
When the Tsar declared war on Germany in 1914, legions of anarchists, socialists and Bolsheviks suddenly rolled up their banners, put away their bombs and flocked to Mother Russia’s defense.
Workers who had been toppling streetcars, cutting down telegraph poles, raising barricades and brandishing red flags in the streets of St. Petersburg only days before, now filled the slums and factories with cries of, "For faith, Tsar and country!" and "For the defense of Holy Russia!"
Workers and peasants volunteered by the thousands for military service.
The usually rebellious Duma or parliament passed the Tsar’s military budget unanimously, in a single day. Duma member and future revolutionary leader Alexander Kerensky remarked, "War was declared and all of a sudden not a trace was left of the revolutionary movement. Even the Bolshevik members of the Duma were forced to admit though somewhat sullenly that it was the duty of the proletariat to cooperate in the defense."
Their patriotism did not last long, however.
Russia’s born-again patriots stabbed their Motherland in the back only three years later. With the war going badly, and winter food supplies failing, they saw their chance.
Radical revolutionaries siezed the government, surrendered to Germany, launched a bloody civil war and plunged the country into 70 years of Marxist hell.
All they had needed was one moment of weakness. And it came soon enough.
America too has weaknesses.
On September 26, the mayor of Cincinnati was forced to declare a two-day state of emergency and curfew not to combat foreign terrorists, but to defend the city from black rioters.
Meanwhile, left-leaning journalists such as Gregory D. Stanford of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel murmur sotto voce complaints about the sudden "taboo" concerning "the manner in which George W. Bush siezed the White House" a taboo Stanford himself breaks by suggesting that "the U.S. Supreme Court rejiggered the lock to fit Bush’s key."
Yes, we have weaknesses. And, like Russia in 1914, we can ill afford them.
Be watchful, Americans. Be wary. Today’s instant patriots may be tomorrow’s traitors.