Haven't seen this diaried today. But if it has been I'll delete this.
Yes, Jonah Goldberg, in an email to Editor & Publisher magazine, admits that he was wrong about the predictions he made in 2005 that Iraq would not be in a civil war, would have a viable constitution and that most Iraqis and Americans would think the war was worth it.
But, he says that because Juan Cole never accepted the bet, he doesn't have to pay. And he slams Jeff Cohen of Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting for suggesting he should pay up.
E&P this morning asked Goldberg for his response, and he e-mailed: "I offered the bet in a foolish fit of pique with Cole. ... Cole refused to take the bet. ... [Now] it seems that his fans want it both ways. They want to extol Cole as a prince for not accepting the bet, but they want me to be held accountable to it even though he never agreed to it. Countless blogs have been dishonest about this suggesting I owe Cole himself $1,000.
"Regardless, Cohen knows Cole never took the bet, but he's trying to muddy the waters. Indeed, I've admitted that Cole would have won. I've written that the Iraq War was a mistake. ... I join a long list of people whose expectations about the war and its handling turned out to be wrong in whole or in part. ... For the record, I still support staying there, because even if it was a mistake to go in when and how we did, that doesn't mean a precipitous withdrawal will make things better."
Will Goldberg still pay the $1,000?
"I will undoubtedly give more money to the USO and to similar charities in the future, as I have done in the past," he replied. "But I am adamantly opposed to jumping through hoops for the likes of Cohen and Co. Intellectual honesty requires that I admit that Cole would have won had he taken the bet. I have done that. ... I have no obligations to him or anybody else in this regard no matter how hard some people try to claim otherwise. ... When I give to charity, again, I will do it privately which is at it should be."
What a turd. If Goldberg had any class, he'd sent the USO a check for $1,000 this afternoon.