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Black Tie International:
The 2009 Mightier Pen Luncheon
 


 The 2009 Mightier Pen Luncheon

    Photos by: Joyce Brooks


 

Tova Leidesdorf, Georgette Mosbacher, Barbara Winston and Charlene Haroche, Luncheon-Chair
Tova Leidesdorf, Georgette Mosbacher, Barbara Winston and Charlene Haroche, Luncheon-Chair

 

Barbara Winston and Frank J. Gaffney, Jr., President & CEO

Barbara Winston and Frank J. Gaffney, Jr., President & CEO
Center for Security Policy

 

Father John Sheehan, SJ with Honoree, Norman Podhoretz

Father John Sheehan, SJ with Honoree, Norman Podhoretz

 

Mrs. Pat Donner, Alex Donner and Kate Edmonds Donner

Mrs. Pamela (Cushing) Donner, Alex Donner and Kate Edmonds Donner, the New York Director for the Center for Security Policy

 

Sharon Bush

Sharon Bush

 
 

Liz Peek, David Webb and Christine Brim, Senior Vice President for Policy and Program Management, Center for Security Policy

Liz Peek, David Webb and Christine Brim, Senior Vice President for Policy and Program Management, Center for Security Policy

 
 

Laurence C. Leeds, Jr., Georgette Mosbacher and

Laurence C. Leeds, Jr., Georgette Mosbacher and
Chuck Scarborough

 
 

Joyce Brooks, Herbert I. London, Ph.D., and Barbara Winston

Joyce Brooks, Herbert I. London, Ph.D., President Hudson Institute and Barbara Winston

 
Andrew McCarthy, Former prosecutor for the 1993 WTC bombing - National Review Online - Recipient of the 2008 Mightier Pen Award and author of "Willful Blindness" with Christine Brim

Andrew McCarthy, Former Prosecutor for the 1993 WTC Bombing - National Review Online - Recipient of the 2008 Mightier Pen Award and author of "Willful Blindness" with Christine Brim

 
Robert R. Rothenberg

Robert R. Rothenberg

 
Peter Graefe

Peter Graefe

 
John Wohlstetter, Senior Fellow Technology & Democracy Project, Discovery Institute

John Wohlstetter, Senior Fellow Technology & Democracy Project, Discovery Institute

 
Lisa Slavin and Sophie Haddad, Chair of the Regents Council, Center for Security Policy

Lisa Slavin and Sophie Haddad, Chair of the Regents Council,
Center for Security Policy

 

On Tuesday, December 15 in New York City’s legendary ‘21’ Club, the Center for Security Policy honored Norman Podhoretz with its Mightier Pen Award. The Mightier Pen Award was inaugurated in 2001 in recognition of individuals who have, through their published writings, contributed both to the public appreciation of the need for robust U.S. national security policies and the perpetuation of military strength as indispensable ingredients in international peace.

Norman Podhoretz is editor-at-large of Commentary Magazine, where he served as editor-in-chief from 1960-1995. He has written hundreds of articles for many major American periodicals, lectured at many universities and before many civic and religious groups on foreign policy, American culture, and Jewish affairs.

Mr. Podhoretz was introduced by his longtime associate at Commentary, Neal Kozodoy, as America's "most hated intellectual”— a reference to the intensely vituperative response from his ‘ex-friends’ on the left since he made his ideological break with them some thirty years ago. "In 'breaking ranks' with the left.," Mr. Kozodoy noted, "he committed so traitorous an act to the intellectual class to which he belonged, that he could never be forgiven, but instead must be eternally and repeatedly consigned to the flames."

Mr. Kozodoy identified another source of the left's strident animus for Mr. Podhoretz. "Running like a crimson thread through every word penned by Norman's Mightier Pen is a disposition, a sentiment, a conviction. The most galling conviction of all.. unabashed, unapologetic, unalloyed, unambiguous, unconstrained and unqualified love of the United States."

Both in his prepared remarks and in answering questions, Mr. Podhoretz addressed the issue of Iran and its quest for nuclear weapons and, specifically, recent American diplomatic history that, he believes, will make a confrontation inevitable.  

He cited now-discredited the 2007 National Intelligence Estimate as a politicized document designed to preclude any moves by the Bush Administration to stop Iran's advance. The Estimate was, "a different kind of bomb... obviously designed to blow up the near-universal consensus that had flowed from the conclusions reached by the intelligence community itself in its 2005 NIE." On the effect of that 'bomb,' Mr. Podhoretz said, "what had been politically very difficult for Bush to do, now became impossible."

With regards to the Obama Administration, Mr. Podhoretz believes it has "adopted the mistaken belief that, 'we could learn to live with an Iranian bomb.'" He recounted a recent debate with writer Fareed Zakaria who expressed this view paradigmaticly. "If Bush was prevented from acting by exterior forces, the obstacles that prevent Obama from acting are lodged in his own mind and heart. It is next to inconceivable that he will take military action against Iran."

"Deterrence could not be relied upon with a regime ruled by Islamofascist revolutionaries who not only are ready to die for their beliefs, but cared less about protecting their people than about the spread of their ideology and their power. If the Mullahs got the bomb... it was not they who would be deterred, but we."

Looking towards Jerusalem, Mr. Podhoretz assessed the likelihood of an Israeli first strike on Iranian nuclear facilities.
"With time running rapidly out, only the Israelis can save us all from a nuclear Armageddon. I believe the Israelis are prepared to do it; I also believe that Barack Obama is prepared to stop them, and that he may succeed in doing so. In that case, G-d help the Israelis and the rest of us as well."

As a recipient of the Mightier Pen, Mr. Podhoretz joins some of America’s most influential and beloved political writers—including William F. Buckley, Jr., Mark Helprin, Charles Krauthammer, and Mark Steyn.

For more information on the Mightier Penn Award and the Center for Security Policy please visit www.SecureFreedom.org.

 
 
 
 

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joyce@blacktiemagazine.com

 
 
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