Christopher Hitchens died on what is being called the last day of the Iraq war. He was a bitter atheist, a ferocious debater, and an eloquent spokesman for the American action to depose Saddam Hussein, “a conflict that he brought his unparalleled eloquence to defend because of his hatred of tyranny in all forms.”
I found the atheist Hitchens’s latter-day crusade against all believers gloomy. And unlike all those better-established conservative writers, the ones I can only envy from here underground, I can’t write of my personal friendship with the man, nor even that I ever met him.
But I am never going to forget the way I saw him describe, on C-SPAN or some such interview program, the way, in the wake of 9/11, George W. Bush, undertook overthrowing the butcher of Baghdad “with a certain brio.”
As Rabbi Shmuley Boteach says he prayed upon hearing of Hitchens’s passing, “Blessed is the true Judge.”