How exactly is Chas Freeman less ideological than, say, Elliott Abrams? Or Doug Feith? I think the views of both men are totally legitimate and worthy of debate. I also think the last few years, to all but those wiht blinders on, have all but destroyed the cogency of their arguments. But I would not have regarded their intense support for maximalist Likudnik policies as somehow "abhorrent" or an "abomination." And I do not recall a masssive, hysterical campaign to prevent them from being included in the Bush foreign poliicy apparatus. Moreover, their views were echoed throughout the administration - and were rarely, if ever, challenged from within. Freeman, on the other hand, is balanced by many traditional "whatever-Israel-wants" advocates in the Obama administration.
The difference between the Bush and Obama administrations is that there was almost no intellectual diversity in the former. This, I suspect, is why so many neocons are demanding Freeman's head. They want to suppress any debate and any lee-way in reframing America's role in the Middle East away from the last eight years. But guess what: Obama was not elected to be Bush II. He was elected in part to recallibrate our foreign policy, especially with respect to the Muslim world. He shouldn't allow himself to be bullied this soon - by fanatics who have done so much damage to this country's and Israel's interests.
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