Ret. General Wesley Clark proposes bringing back internment camps for ‘radicalized’ Americans

970903-D-9880W-028 Gen. Wesley Clark, U.S. Army, supreme allied commander Europe, briefing the Pentagon press Sept. 3, 1997, on the current situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina. DoD photo by R. D. Ward.

In an interview with MSNBC following the mass shooting at two military facilities in Chattanooga, Retired General Wesley Clark said, “We are at war… on a national policy level, we need to look at what self-radicalization means.  We must identify the people who are most likely to be radicalized, so they can be segregated from the community for the duration of the conflict.”

During 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,” he said.

According to his new proposal, any political dissident that the government deemed “radical” would be rounded up.

San Francisco Examiner, February 1942. Photo credit: Wikipedia
San Francisco Examiner, February 1942. Photo credit: Wikipedia

That would include, according to Counter Current News, the “tens of thousands of U.S. citizens who have been placed on terror watch lists and the infamous FBI “No Fly List” who have never been convicted of any crime, and in most cases have never been arrested or questioned.”

“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,” Clark said, “We’ve got to cut this off at the beginning.”

Clark goes on to say that this shouldn’t only be considered here in the States, but the allied nations like Britain, Germany and France should also be looking at their domestic law procedures.

Heart Mountain Relocation Center, Heart Mountain, Wyoming. Residents of Japanese ancestry, at the Heart Mountain Relocation Center, were quick to grasp the recreational advantages of Wyoming's cold weather. Ponds were constructed and flooded, and former Californians, to whom ice skating was a new sport, were enthusiastically nursing bruises and enjoying the sport. Photo credit: Wikipedia
Heart Mountain Relocation Center, Heart Mountain, Wyoming. Residents of Japanese ancestry, at the Heart Mountain Relocation Center, were quick to grasp the recreational advantages of Wyoming’s cold weather. Ponds were constructed and flooded, and former Californians, to whom ice skating was a new sport, were enthusiastically nursing bruises and enjoying the sport. Photo credit: Wikipedia

According to the Intercept, “The comments were shockingly out of character for Clark.” In an interview with reporter Murtaza Hussain earlier this year, Clark spoke out strongly against “the politics of fear” and eroding democratic institutions and norms. At that time, he also restated his criticism of the excesses committed by Bush-era neo-cons under the banner of fighting terrorism.

In 2004, Clark’s campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination was highly critical of the Bush administration’s excessive response to the 9/11 attacks.

Hussain says, the outcry on social media over Clark’s comments is not surprising. “That radicalization itself is a highly amorphous and politically malleable concept only makes this proposal more troubling,” he said.

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