The Bipartisan Push for Internment Camps

On Friday, Franklin Graham posted this on his Facebook page:

Four innocent Marines (United States Marine Corps) killed and three others wounded in ‪#‎Chattanooga‬ yesterday including a policeman and another Marine–all by a radical Muslim whose family was allowed to immigrate to this country from Kuwait. We are under attack by Muslims at home and abroad. We should stop all immigration of Muslims to the U.S. until this threat with Islam has been settled. Every Muslim that comes into this country has the potential to be radicalized–and they do their killing to honor their religion and Muhammad. During World War 2, we didn’t allow Japanese to immigrate to America, nor did we allow Germans. Why are we allowing Muslims now? Do you agree? Let your Congressman know that we’ve got to put a stop to this and close the flood gates. Pray for the men and women who serve this nation in uniform, that God would protect them.

Also on Friday, former Democratic Presidential candidate Wes Clark said this in an interview:

We have got to identify the people who are most likely to be radicalized. We’ve got to cut this off at the beginning.  There are always a certain number of young people who are alienated.  They don’t get a job, they lost a girlfriend, their family doesn’t feel happy here and we can watch the signs of that. And there are members of the community who can reach out to those people and bring them back in and encourage them to look at their blessings here.

But I do think on a national policy level we need to look at what self-radicalization means because we are at war with this group of terrorists.  They do have an ideology. In World War II if someone supported Nazi Germany at the expense of the United States, we didn’t say that was freedom of speech, we put him in a camp, they were prisoners of war.

So, if these people are radicalized and they don’t support the United States and they are disloyal to the United States, as a matter of principle fine. It’s their right and it’s our right and obligation to segregate them from the normal community for the duration of the conflict.  And I think we’re going to have to increasingly get tough on this, not only in the United States but our allied nations like Britain, Germany and France are going to have to look at their domestic law procedures.

Interestingly, both comments were made in the wake of an attack that defies easy labeling, both according to the law and the absence of evidence of anything but depression. But nevertheless, the Chattanooga attack seemingly made it okay to talk about doing something we claim to have forsworn after our World War II experience. This, at a time when the number of people killed in Islamic terrorist attacks in the US since 9/11 still numbers in the tens.

Marcy has been blogging full time since 2007. She’s known for her live-blogging of the Scooter Libby trial, her discovery of the number of times Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was waterboarded, and generally for her weedy analysis of document dumps.

Marcy Wheeler is an independent journalist writing about national security and civil liberties. She writes as emptywheel at her eponymous blog, publishes at outlets including the Guardian, Salon, and the Progressive, and appears frequently on television and radio. She is the author of Anatomy of Deceit, a primer on the CIA leak investigation, and liveblogged the Scooter Libby trial.

Marcy has a PhD from the University of Michigan, where she researched the “feuilleton,” a short conversational newspaper form that has proven important in times of heightened censorship. Before and after her time in academics, Marcy provided documentation consulting for corporations in the auto, tech, and energy industries. She lives with her spouse and dog in Grand Rapids, MI.

9 replies
  1. scribe says:

    There was an article in today’s paper about some small town in Texas trying to prevent the Islamic center of some county or other from buying land and putting in a cemetery so the Muslim dead can be buried in accordance with their religious precepts. Apparently, they figure that if the dead can be buried there, the next step will be a madrasa and then it’s only a few seconds before they’re overrun with Sharia-quoting bomb-throwers stealing their innocents and killing those who resist. And they’re dirty, too. http://www.yourhoustonnews.com/courier/news/state-briefs-texas-residents-condemn-plan-for-muslim-cemetery/article_aca04e86-fe80-5fc8-84e8-c9ca9664f5b8.html
    .
    No one seems to find any problem with the fundie Jews from Kiryas Joel funneling money and votes to Democrats in return for which and suddenly finding their desired development plans and variances sliding through like butter (no quid pro quo, of course). http://www.capitalnewyork.com/article/albany/2015/07/8572342/filings-show-kiryas-joel-money-flowed-cuomo-after-veto
    .
    As usual, the lead guy on this Texas thing appears to be the local fundie Protestant minister. (Someone once said that a large percentage of rural ministers tend to be farm boys who have an aversion to work and favor talking.) Some of the locals have threatened to dump pig’s blood and heads on the proposed site, to keep the Muslims away. Last I checked, that probably violates either the public health code or possibly the environmental laws on dumping hazardous waste. Not that these Great Americans would be prosecuted for it. http://www.buzzfeed.com/stephaniemcneal/texas-residents-threaten-to-dump-pigs-blood-on-site-of-propo#.giRK1ypKVo
    I’m sure the good Rev. Meeks will step up to expose his religious larnin’ for all to see.

    But, more seriously, this call for detention camps is just the latest evidence of the abject failure of policy and practice by the USG, of the primacy of fear in what passes for political discussion, and another step down the road to the totalitarian police state our governing classes lust after.

    • scribe says:

      I’m a little surprised the good Gen. Clark didn’t say it would be a good idea to put the Muslims in camps where their presence could both be concentrated and more carefully observed. Just to prevent them from contaminating ‘murcan society.
      .
      Stars on one’s shoulders do not a genius make. In fact, the opposite is more often true.

  2. galljdaj says:

    I believe some internment camps are very necessary in the USA! I also believe the Muslim Community is not the group to be ‘punished’ by such camps.

    The virtually World Wide Perps are US politicians and leaders in Our Govt and Military, that are acting in behalf of the 1% of US Citizens.

  3. orionATL says:

    insanity approaches in small steps.

    these deaths are a sad loss but represent a miniscule security threat. what a great opportunity, though, to expand the war on terror so that it further encroaches on american soil, cf, palestine, gaza.

  4. Ryan says:

    Say what you want about internment camps, but we treated the Japs better than anyone currently sentenced for life imprisonment for drug crimes and housed in overcrowded general pop units.

  5. Les says:

    What’s interesting is that Wes Clark got away with what he said, and there was absolutely no other panelist on that show to contradict his statements. That seems to be the case with many of these “news” shows where all the Pentagon-paid experts speak with a single voice.

    It’s too bad how far freedom has declined in this country, especially press freedom. If this was still the 80’s, the Benghazi-Syria disclosure would’ve blown up into another Iran-Contra scandal. Instead of talking about a few shooters here and there, we would have had public outrage over the covert recruitment and arming of terrorist groups. In the UK media, they openly reported on the embedding of their special forces in the Libyan militia groups.

    • Bill Michtom says:

      “It’s too bad how far freedom has declined in this country”

      But that makes us safer! No freedoms and we won’t be hated for them!

      The war on GWOT is working. Now, everyone, stop looking under your beds, OK?

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