They hate us for our freedoms

As the U.S. imprisons numerous innocent Yemenis, a National Review writer proposes that we slaughter them.

By Glenn Greenwald
Published January 1, 2010 12:02PM (EST)

(updated below)

National Review's Cliff May, yesterday:

A Bipartisan Proposal

Step (1): Return all Gitmo detainees to Yemen.

Step (2): Use Predator missiles to strike the baggage-claim area 20 minutes after they arrive.

Just an idea.

Virtually all of the 90 Yemeni detainees currently at Guantanamo have been imprisoned for years despite never having been charged with any crime.  Roughly half of them have been officially "cleared for release" -- meaning even the U.S. Government believes they did nothing wrong or pose no danger to the U.S.  Two weeks ago, the Obama administration, to its credit, released 6 Yemeni detainees -- after years in captivity -- because a federal court was about to grant their habeas petition on the ground that there is no evidence to justify their detention.  In response, people like John McCain, Joe Lieberman and Dianne Feinstein are demanding with a monarchical wave of the hand that all Yemenis be kept imprisoned anyway and not released, and according to this morning's New York Times, the Obama administration now plans to hold the rest of them indefinitely.

That's bad enough on its own terms (and as Yemen exerpt Gregory Johnsen pointed out, it's well known in Yemen that we're imprisoning numerous innocent Yemenis at Guantanamo, which -- like much of what we do -- substantially helps Al Qaeda).  But Cliff May thinks we should take them all, including all the innocent ones, and just slaughter them -- and do so in the most cowardly way possible:  by dropping a missile on them from the air while they're standing there, unarmed and unsuspecting.  And if he suggested this murderous proposal only in humor, that's so warped it might actually be worse.

Remember:  radical Islamists -- unlike us -- are uncivilized, bloodthirsty and have no regard for human life or well-established conventions of Western civilization.  And they hate us not for what we do or who we are, but because we're so Free and Good.

* * * * *

Juan Cole details 10 good stories from 2009 from the Muslim world that, he says, you likely never heard about.


UPDATE:  So predictably -- and, indeed, as I explicitly predicted here -- whenever right-wing fanatics like Cliff May have one of their twisted, sociopathic statements highlighted, they'll immediately (and cowardly) claim it was all just a "joke," and then turn themselves into a victim by screeching that anyone who objected to what they said must be a humorless, politically correct Leftist who wants  to control their speech.  Right on cue, May now claims that when he proposed that we slaughter 90 Yemeni detainees, he was just joking.  It was, you see, a "parody," and he accuses me of wanting to "outlaw humor" and being a "humorless leftist ideologue" because I highlighted what he wrote.

In what possible way is there anything humorous about what May wrote?  It's a "parody" of what exactly?  Of the bloodthirsty mentality that governed this country for the last decade and which defines his political movement?  As Andrew Sullivan notes, May's statement is "a neo-fascist sentiment" and "a function of surrendering to barbarism, not fighting it."  I'd say that it's actually a manifestation of the barbarism that we frequently display while steadfastly pretending that only others do (those Muslims over there).

Glenn Greenwald

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