Founded by the American Jewish Committee in 1945 under the editorship of Elliot E. Cohen (editor from 1945 to 1959), Commentary magazine developed into the leading postwar journal of Jewish affairs. The periodical strove to construct a new American Jewish identity while processing the events of the Holocaust, the formation of the State of Israel, and the Cold War. In its heyday, the magazine was edited by Norman Podhoretzfrom 1960 to 1995. Besides its strong coverage of cultural issues, Commentary provided a strong voice for the anti-Stalinist left. Podhoretz, originally a liberal Democrat turned neoconservative, moved the magazine to the right and toward the Republican Party in the 1970s and 1980s.
Commentary has been described by Benjamin Balint as the "contentious magazine that transformed the Jewish left into the neoconservative right", while, according to historian and literary critic Richard Pells, "no other journal of the past half century has been so consistently influential, or so central to the major debates that have transformed the political and intellectual life of the United States."
Nu lägger jag mer vikt vid sakfrågorna är något annat. Så det faktum att Commentary tycks ha rört sig från att vara en plattform för en antistalinistiska, judisk vänster, till en neokonservativ opinionsbildare, spelar en underordnad roll när jag nu börjat läsa den. Jag tycker att den mycket nyktert analyserar den kulturrevolutionära situation som råder i USA och som får många fundament att falla (inte bara statyerna och andra symboler utan något grundläggande demokratiskt som lämnar plats för gatans parlament).
I en mycket intressant artikel, skriven av Abe Greenwald, läser jag:
The fact that 62 percent of the public is currently scared to speak its mind on political matters suggests that a majority of Americans already entertain some doubt about what’s going on in the country. This is deeply encouraging, but of no use unless they decide to speak out. It is essential that conservatives continue to vigorously challenge the revolution at every turn. But if sanity and reason reside only on a small island called conservatism, the country will not survive. On this point, therefore, the most hopeful sign on the horizon is the new and growing tranche of writings from journalists and thinkers who are not associated with the political right but who nonetheless have a clear sense of the great wrong being done in the name of justice and equality.
People as different as Bari Weiss, Andrew Sullivan, John McWhorter, Thomas Chatterton Williams, and Matt Taibbi have written firmly and incisively about the civil unrest and thought-policing that threaten to derail the American project. These are writers with a large readership, and their work can strike minds on the left with the power of epiphany. Their coming forward to say what others won’t makes it easier for more liberal Americans to stand up and declare themselves against the chaos. Thus, regardless of their opposition to certain conservative principles, they should be encouraged and welcomed as allies in this most pressing matter.