On Valentine’s Day, Christopher Hitchens was in Lebanon, and on an evening out on the town, he appears to have encountered a wall poster of the Syrian Social Nationalist Party, an anti-Semitic, fascist admiring national party that sports this Nazi swastika-echoing political flag:
Hitchens appears to have taken out a pen and boldly written on the poster, “Fuck the SSNP”—and some admirers of the party saw his gesture and assaulted him for it.
I admire Hitchens’s courage to push back against fascism and anti-Semitism. But there is some irony here. Hitchens, who coined the term “Islamo-Fascism”—and has defended its use—was in a Muslim country and assaulted, not by “Islamic fascists,” but by nostalgic admirers of a literal, old-style kind of fascism. The Syrian Social Nationalist Party is a secular party.
Read more about the assault here.