Beinart, Peter 1971-
Beinart, Peter 1971-
Born 1971; married; children: a son. Education: Yale University, B.A., 1993; University College, Oxford, M.Phil., 1995.
Home—Washington, DC. Office—New Republic, 1331 H St. N.W., Ste, 700, Washington, DC 20005.
Writer, journalist, broadcaster. New Republic, Washington, DC, summer intern, 1993, managing editor, 1995-97, senior editor, 1997-99, editor, 1999-2006, editor-at-large, 2006—. Makes regular appearances on a variety of news and talk shows on CNN, ABC, C-SPAN, and NPR. Brookings Institute, guest fellow; public speaker.
Rhodes scholar, Oxford University.
The Good Fight: Why Liberals—and Only Liberals—Can Win the War on Terror and Make America Great Again, HarperCollins (New York, NY), 2006.
Contributor to periodicals, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Boston Globe, Atlantic Monthly, Newsweek, Time, and Reader's Digest. Writes a monthly column for the Washington Post, and the "TRB" column for the New Republic, reprinted in the New York Post.
Editor-at-large for the magazine the New Republic, journalist Peter Beinart enlarged upon an article he wrote in response to the Democratic defeat in the 2004 election. That article, "A Fighting Faith: An Argument for a New Liberalism," argued that Democrats should put forward a mission statement that advocates an old-fashioned and hard-headed liberalism, the sort of foreign policy that presidents such as Harry Truman and John F. Kennedy espoused during the Cold War. This would be a policy of increased spending on foreign aid and defense. Beinart also took to task the left wing of the Democratic Party for focusing too much attention on criticism of the Bush administration at the expense of taking the terrorist threat more seriously. This article, well received, was expanded into the 2006 book, The Good Fight: Why Liberals—and Only Liberals—Can Win the War on Terror and Make America Great Again, in hopes of providing a policy agenda for the Democratic party in 2006.
The book won positive reviews in periodicals devoted to literary criticism, but, predictably, in more partisan magazines or at the hands of more partisan critics, reviews were sharply divided along political lines. Thus, Vanessa Bush, reviewing The Good Fight in Booklist, found that it offered a "thoughtful perspective." A Kirkus Reviews critic summed up that Beinart advised "civil rights at home and anti-jihadism abroad" in this "cri de guerre that seems tailor-made for … the DNC." Similarly, a Publishers Weekly reviewer called The Good Fight a "stimulating manifesto."
Reviewing the same book in the Atlantic Monthly, onetime liberal columnist Christopher Hitchens, a strong advocate for the war in Iraq, noted, "In his wishful and overconfident subtitle, where he asserts that only liberals can win this war, Beinart vainly tries to split a difference." For Hitchens, Beinart's book title actually translated into "Hillary [Clinton] in 2008." Hitchens further noted that this was "a prospect some distance short of a liberal dream." Fred Kaplan, writing in the conservative Washington Monthly, likewise observed, " [The Good Fight is] a thoughtful, provocative, well-written book—but, ultimately, muddled and unsatisfying." Kaplan also found Beinart's concept of Cold War liberalism "somewhat mythical." On the other hand, Ruth Conniff, writing in the liberal Progressive magazine noted, "My biggest beef with Beinart's book is that he downplays the contributions of scruffy revolutionaries to fundamental social change."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
American Prospect, June, 2006, Michael Tomasky, "Not So Fast," review of The Good Fight: Why Liberals—and Only Liberals—Can Win the War on Terror and Make America Great Again, p. 53.
Atlantic Monthly, May, 2006, Christopher Hitchens, "Blood for No Oil!," review of The Good Fight, p. 133.
Booklist, June 1, 2006, Vanessa Bush, review of The Good Fight, p. 21.
Foreign Affairs, July-August, 2006, Richard Holbrooke, "How Democrats Can Defeat Terrorism and Win Elections," review of The Good Fight, p. 170.
Kirkus Reviews, April 15, 2006, review of The Good Fight, p. 387.
Library Journal, July 1, 2006, Michael O. Eshleman, review of The Good Fight, p. 91.
National Review, July 3, 2006, Richard Lowry, "Not Ready Yet," review of The Good Fight, p. 45.
Policy Review, August-September, 2006, Peter Berkowitz, "War-Torn Democrats," review of The Good Fight, p. 69.
Progressive, August, 2006, Ruth Conniff, "The Great Liberal Debate," review of The Good Fight, p. 42.
Publishers Weekly, April 10, 2006, review of The Good Fight, p. 63.
Washington Monthly, July-August, 2006, Fred Kaplan, "Cold Comfort," review of The Good Fight, p. 42.
Keppler Speakers Web site,http://www.kepplerspeakers.com/ (November 15, 2006), "Peter Beinart."
New Republic Online,http://www.tnr.com/ (November 15, 2006), "Editor-at-Large Peter Beinart."
United Features Syndicate Web site,http://www.unitedfeatures.com/ (November 15, 2006), "Peter Beinart by Peter Beinart."*