From the much-loved, witty and excoriating voice of journalist
Nick Cohen, a powerful and irreverent dissection of the agonies,
idiocies and compromises of mainstream liberal thought.
Nick Cohen comes from the Left. While growing up, his mother
would search the supermarket shelves for politically reputable
citrus fruit and despair. When, at the age of 13, he found out that
his kind and thoughtful English teacher voted Conservative, he
nearly fell off his chair: 'To be good, you had to be on the
Today he's no less confused. When he looks around him, in the
aftermath of the invasion of Iraq, he sees a community of
Left-leaning liberals standing on their heads. Why is it that
apologies for a militant Islam that stands for everything the
liberal-Left is against come from a section of the Left? After the
American and British wars in Bosnia and Kosovo against Slobodan
Milosevic's ethnic cleansers, why were men and women of the Left
denying the existence of Serb concentration camps? Why is Palestine
a cause for the liberal-Left, but not, for instance, China, the
Sudan, Zimbabwe or North Korea? Why can't those who say they
support the Palestinian cause tell you what type of Palestine they
would like to see? After the 9/11 attacks on New York and
Washington why were you as likely to read that a sinister
conspiracy of Jews controlled American or British foreign policy in
a liberal literary journal as in a neo-Nazi rag? It's easy to know
what the Left is fighting against the evils of Bush and
corporations but what and, more to the point, who are they fighting
As he tours the follies of the Left, Nick Cohen asks us to
reconsider what it means to be liberal in this confused and
topsy-turvy time. With the angry satire of Swift, he reclaims the
values of democracy and solidarity that united the movement against
fascism, and asks: What's Left?"
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