So. Chris Hitchens got beat up in Beirut by a bunch of thugs because he defaced a billboard of a maybe-Syrian nationalist political party. He is really, really proud of this fact.

Don't get us wrong! It's cool enough. It helps a bit with the "drunken radical leftist provocateur" cred that Hitch has lost as he's aged and supported the dumbest president ever. He's gallivanting along one of Beirut's most chic street, shopping for the missus, he claims, when he comes across a swastika, which he promptly begins to deface, until he is set upon by thugs!

I have barely gotten to the letter k in a well-known transitive verb when I am grabbed by my shirt collar by a venomous little thug, his face glittering with hysterical malice. With his other hand, he is speed-dialing for backup on his cell phone. As always with episodes of violence, things seem to slow down and quicken up at the same time: the eruption of mayhem in broad daylight happening with the speed of lightning yet somehow held in freeze-frame. It becomes evident, as the backup arrives, that this gang wants to take me away.

Oh man, he collared Hitch and then called for back-up? Was this a fascist young thug or a New York cop? The whole incident actually sounds kind of funny, with Hitch failing to interest an actual cop and climbing in and out of taxis with his assailants, with the actual "beating" part not transpiring until he's hit from behind outside a cafe, at which point passersby intervene and Hitch manages to finally get a cab.

But the rest of his Vanity Fair piece is less fun. Hitch goes to a Hezbollah rally, and in order to properly express his disdain for these fanatics, he compares it to "a Shiite-Muslim mega-church" with "an onstage Muslim Milli Vanilli orchestra and choir," because trashy God-loving American culture is what Hitch really despises, even more than those fascists.