Category Archives: recovering communists

The gagged Hitchens

Screen Shot 2015-05-14 at 08.18.54A strange disappearance, behind which there is something probably disreputable

Britain’s Mail on Sunday newspaper has silenced its best columnist, Peter Hitchens. His columns have been spiked. The skewering was timed to coincide with the British general election.

The spike: destination of Hitchens’s last two columnsIt is speculated that the newspaper, recognising the commercial imperative of identification with the winning side, has gagged Hitchens so as to ensure that readers do not follow his (wise) advice, which has long been that right-thinking, decent people ought to desist from voting for the corrupt Tories.

In the republic of the Rothermeres, Hitchens has become an unperson.

According to the magazine Private Eye, Hitchens is ‘now talking to his lawyers’.

Screen Shot 2015-05-14 at 08.22.35

In the run-up to the election and after, suddenly absent. Why?


This is a disgrace because Hitchens is a writer and broadcaster of a high order. He is also personally admirable for having the guts to admit that his youthful communist leanings were dangerous, murderous folly.

Dalrymple writes that Hitchens has

undergone a real and painful repentance for all that he formerly was and did.


has discovered that it is he, and not just the world, that was and is imperfect and that therefore humility is a virtue, even if one does not always live up to it.

The first sentence of Hitchens’ 2010 book The Rage Against God reads,

Screen Shot 2015-05-14 at 08.25.36I set fire to my Bible on the playing fields of my Cambridge boarding school one bright, windy spring afternoon in 1967.

One senses, writes Dalrymple,

the deep — and, in my view, healthy — feeling of self-disgust with which he wrote this, for indeed it describes an act of wickedness.

Hitchens does not believe, says Dalrymple,

that man can live by his own individual reason alone.

He believes that

something else is necessary and inevitable.

From the magazine Private Eye

From the magazine Private Eye