Dana has a valid point at Delaware Watch that racist observations come out of Pat Buchanan's writing, and he is also arguably a homophobe.
I don't want the man to be President or hold any other elected office. I despise his take on domestic politics.
That having been said, I'm in agreement with Libertarian Girl, who notes what Buchanan wrote before we invaded Iraq:
With our MacArthur Regency in Baghdad, Pax Americana will reach apogee. But then the tide recedes, for the one endeavor at which Islamic people excel is expelling imperial powers by terror or guerrilla war.
They drove the Brits out of Palestine and Aden, the French out of Algeria, the Russians out of Afghanistan, the Americans out of Somalia and Beirut, the Israelis out of Lebanon. We have started up the road to empire and over the next hill we will meet those who went before. The only lesson we learn from history is that we do not learn from history.
Why pay attention to Buchanan? Two reasons that I can think of--at least one of which dovetails with Tyler's earlier post about the PBS special on Bush's War:
1) Because it is important to remember that it takes the entire political spectrum of belief in a representative democracy to keep our government in line. We get the foreign policy we get in part because our elected leaders hold their fingers in the wind and willingly (yes, this includes the Democrats) play on our fears to get more power and influence. It should have been blindingly obvious that any foreign policy to which virtually the same exact objections were registered by the far right (Buchanan) and the far left (Chalmers Johnson) is something we needed to take a second look at.
2) And because, despite his other flaws, Buchanan's understanding of the rise and fall of empires and societies across the course of history is--if viewed through a conservative prism--exceptionally well argued and does not take liberties with the facts as historians understand them.
For better or worse, both Buchanan and Johnson see what even our most strident opponents of the Iraq war do not: the legacy of the Cold War has been the quiet establishment of an American Empire. Empires never last. There are only two ways an empire can end. The most usual is for greater and greater strains to be placed upon it until the whole edifice crashes down of its own weight--with catastrophic consequences for the citizens. Or--and this has never occurred before--a people committed to a republican form of government could actually force their government to draw back from the imperialistic brink.
I think the second is unlikely; I also believe it is our only choice.