There’s a great back and forth currently going on between eXile philosophical godfather John Dolan and the neoconservative dean of The American University of Iraq – Sulaimani, John Agresto–a former Reagan appointee who’s attempting to run an American-esque university system in Iraq with our tax money. And when we say back and forth, we mean Dolan is tearing him to shreds.
The battle started a couple of months ago, when Dolan returned from teaching at Sulaimani after being fired by Agresto. Dolan alleges that Agresto fired him after digging up pieces he’d written for the eXile that were critical of neoconservatives and the war in Iraq. That’s actually a mild description–as Dolan doesn’t really allege things, he drops rhetorical daisy cutters on anything he doesn’t like. Read the piece and you’ll see what I’m talking about.
Agresto responded personally to Dolan’s piece, writing a followup piece called “John Dolan: Academic Fraud” on a student site for the American University of Iraq- Sulaimani. The piece accused Dolan of lying about his treatment at the hands of University, and dug up old quotes, often satirical, from Dolan to put him in a bad light.
Needless to say, for anyone who reads The eXiled, Dolan responded.
Well, we all know where to start with Viet Nam-age super-patriot Republicans like Agresto: Where were they when America needed them at Khe Sanh? It’s a rhetorical question, of course; you know, I know, my neighbor’s dog knows, everybody in the country knows that none of these worthless warmongering hypocrites ever got closer to the Viet Cong than humming “The Ballad of the Green Berets” like Bill Murray in Caddyshack.
That’s just an assumption, of course. But a real pro, a competent slanderer, always checks out his facts first. So we’d go online to see where Agresto was when the Bouncing Betty’s were going off…and—oho! What’s this? Not only did John Agresto never serve in Viet Nam, but he actually went to Canada like a goddamn hippie deserter! Agresto graduated from college in 1967, which makes him the perfect age to be killed or crippled in a stinking rice paddy for the glory of America. After losing that undergrad immunity in ’67, Agresto burrowed back into grad school and in 1971 went to Canada to wait out the war with the other draft-dodgers, teaching at U. Toronto under the, er, wing of Allan Bloom, cultural critic and serial rapist of male students he found attractive enough to, ah, mentor. As Bloom used to tell his pal Saul Bellow, “I just can’t stay away from the boys.” Agresto was one of Bloom’s boys long enough to worm his way into the Reagan administration, working as a commie-sniffer dog at the NEH for giants of American culture like Bill Bennett and Lynne Cheney.
It gets worse. Agresto should have just shut his mouth after Dolan’s first piece. If he knew anything about The eXile, he’d know that he’s now going to be the beneficiary of at least three years of vicious online harassment, libel and slander. Attempting to defend himself only made the target bigger.
Should be fun for the rest of us.