“Enemies of Society”nby Arthur M. Ecksteinn’The essential matter of history is not what happened but what people thoughtnor said about it.”n— Frederic MaitlandnDestructive Generation: SecondnThoughts About the Sixtiesnby Peter Collier and David HorowitznNew York: Summit Books;n338 pp., $19.95nIn the late summer of 1985, the SannFrancisco Bay area celebrated then40th anniversary of VJ Day and the endnof Worid War II. Part of the celebrationnconsisted of a cavalcade of AmericannNavy vessels around the Bay; this commemorativencavalcade, however, wasnshadowed by a squadron of small pleasurenboats defiantly flying the Japanesenflag. These boats were the forces ofn”The Berkeley Peace Fleet” —nprotesting the celebration. A story hardnto believe, perhaps, but true (I witnessednit myself): to the AmericannHard Left, it seems that any enemy ofnAmerican society will do — even Japanesenfascism.n”Any enemy of American societynwill do”: this is the brutal point ham-nArthur M. Eckstein is a professor ofnhistory at the University of Marylandnat College Park.n30/CHRONICLESnmered home again and again in thencollection of essays that make up thendisturbing new book by Peter Colliernand David Horowitz, DestructivenGeneration: Second Thoughts Aboutnthe Sixties. Long-time editors of thenradical magazine Ramparts, Colliernand Horowitz are also (for instance)nthe men who introduced Jane Fonda tonAmerican far-left politics. Again, whennJean Genet held his momentousn”summit meeting” with the Black Panthersn(at the home, of course, of anStanford professor), it was natural thatnCollier and Horowitz would be there.nIn other words, when they write aboutnthe Movement, they write from theninside.nBasically, they make two grimnpoints. First, within the context ofnAmerican society at home, they arguenthat the New Left has historically defendednand then identified with violentncriminality. Criminals were originallynthought of as social victims rather thannsocial predators, then seen as valiantnMiltonian rebels, and finally viewed asnthe militant, military vanguard of thenRevolution. Parallel with this sequencenof intellectual degradation, the Newn’P’fr’^n4i#.jnnnLeft itself—which of course was overwhelminglynwhite and bourgeois innorigin — went from peaceful protest tonviolent protest to outright terrorism.nSecond, within the context ofnAmerica’s relationships with the world,nthe New Left has historically slid fromnsympathy for the alleged “victims” ofnthe United States into outright identificationnwith the proclaimed internationalnenemies of the United States. Thenparadigm here was provided by thenemotional tie between AmericannMarxism and the Soviet Union duringnthe 1930’s; but that relationship wasnsoon being spookily recapitulated innthe relationship between the New Leftnand Vietnam, Cuba, and Maoist Chinanin the 60’s, and Nicaragua in then70’s and 80’s. What has been especiallyndisheartening since about 1975 hasnbeen the reemergence of the old-linenCommunist Party of the USA as annintellectual and political force withinnthe movement. Hence the many recentnleftist historical studies in whichnthe Stalinist party hacks of the 30’s arenportrayed as heroic American dissidents;nhence the sinister role playednby the Worid Peace Council (an oldn