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BS: John Walker. What to do?

marty D 10 Dec 01 - 12:02 AM
Joe Offer 10 Dec 01 - 12:14 AM
Rolfyboy6 10 Dec 01 - 12:16 AM
Rick Fielding 10 Dec 01 - 12:06 PM
Kim C 10 Dec 01 - 01:55 PM
Gary T 10 Dec 01 - 01:59 PM
GUEST,AliUK on the works comp. 10 Dec 01 - 02:09 PM
GUEST,Claymore 10 Dec 01 - 02:11 PM
Steve in Idaho 10 Dec 01 - 02:13 PM
SINSULL 10 Dec 01 - 02:46 PM
Rick Fielding 10 Dec 01 - 03:52 PM
artbrooks 10 Dec 01 - 04:00 PM
GUEST,sc 10 Dec 01 - 04:23 PM
GUEST,Claymore 10 Dec 01 - 04:39 PM
Gareth 10 Dec 01 - 06:21 PM
Sorcha 10 Dec 01 - 06:45 PM
DougR 10 Dec 01 - 06:53 PM
AliUK 10 Dec 01 - 07:07 PM
tremodt 10 Dec 01 - 07:42 PM
DougR 10 Dec 01 - 09:18 PM
catspaw49 10 Dec 01 - 09:33 PM
GUEST,sc 10 Dec 01 - 09:37 PM
Amos 10 Dec 01 - 09:49 PM
catspaw49 10 Dec 01 - 10:09 PM
Celtic Soul 10 Dec 01 - 10:11 PM
Sorcha 10 Dec 01 - 11:04 PM
Janie 10 Dec 01 - 11:05 PM
GUEST,mgarvey@pacifier.com 10 Dec 01 - 11:16 PM
Amos 10 Dec 01 - 11:56 PM
Rick Fielding 11 Dec 01 - 12:05 AM
katlaughing 11 Dec 01 - 10:14 AM
DougR 11 Dec 01 - 01:32 PM
Whistle Stop 11 Dec 01 - 02:13 PM
annamill 11 Dec 01 - 02:20 PM
LoopySanchez 11 Dec 01 - 03:58 PM
annamill 11 Dec 01 - 04:08 PM
GUEST,Jenny the T 11 Dec 01 - 04:28 PM
AliUK 11 Dec 01 - 06:38 PM
Gary T 11 Dec 01 - 07:33 PM
Bobert 11 Dec 01 - 10:10 PM
catspaw49 11 Dec 01 - 10:28 PM
Bobert 11 Dec 01 - 11:20 PM
Lepus Rex 11 Dec 01 - 11:57 PM
Amos 12 Dec 01 - 12:06 AM
Lepus Rex 12 Dec 01 - 12:12 AM
heric 12 Dec 01 - 12:46 AM
Spud Murphy 12 Dec 01 - 02:17 AM
Wolfgang 12 Dec 01 - 10:27 AM
Rick Fielding 12 Dec 01 - 11:46 AM
annamill 12 Dec 01 - 01:08 PM
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Subject: John Walker. What to do?
From: marty D
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 12:02 AM

I've been trying to get more information on the John Walker situation, but it seems the Government is really embarrassed by this turn of events. I can't blame them. I've seen the clip where the CIA are trying to get him to talk but he appears to be a hard line fundamentalist and I suspect he's willing to die for Islam. Where do they go from here? Once they clean him up, maybe his lawyers will try to get him to renounce his beliefs, or say he was 'brainwashed'. Some of his friends even site his young age as a reason to go easy on him, but considering the average age of the other Taliban fighters I don't think that will wash. His father implies that he's just a misguided kid (naturally) who made a bad decision. I think this is going to be very devisive, and at a bad time too. Any thoughts?

marty


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 12:14 AM

Hi, Marty - I was wondering how much would come up, so I searched for "John Walker" afghanistan at www.google.com (click and see). There's quite a lot on the Internet that's already been indexed.
Confusing story, isn't it?
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Rolfyboy6
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 12:16 AM

I suspect that this will be a real show with all the worst of human behavior and self-righteous attitudes on display. Watch the scapegoatism develop. If the Bushites have political difficulties they will try to burn the kid. The war is ending too fast for them and they may well be frightened of the scenario that happened to George Bush Senior--win the war too long before the next election, have a recession, and lose the election. Lets hope that some way will be found for the kid not to become a political football. Damn Kids.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 12:06 PM

Being the political junkie I am, I've also been reading all I can about this case. What may even be more fascinating, is that apparently there are two more "Americans" caught fighting with the Taliban. I don't know, but I suspect the other two are probably of Arabic descent. Will they be treated in the same way as Walker?

Already the idealogues from both sides of the issue are stating their case...."string him up",.....or "make him a poster boy for troubled kids of today".

I swear, if he gets a Press Agent..watch out!

Rick


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Kim C
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 01:55 PM

Back in the old days they called it treason and punishment was relatively swift. Ask Benedict Arnold if you don't believe me.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Gary T
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 01:59 PM

There are bad decisions, and then there are bad decisions. Even a "kid" should know that taking up arms against your homeland is quite serious.

What bothers me the most about this fellow is his admiration for the Taliban's "pure Islamic" governing. Surely he knew how atrociously his cohorts--and possibly he--treated various people. For someone to accept--nay, endorse--that, I find despicable. I feel no sympathy for him.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: GUEST,AliUK on the works comp.
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 02:09 PM

Hmmm...waht a dilemma! Or is it? I mean the guy is not some fresh-faced sophomore. He made a conscious decision to take up arms with his brother Talebans(sic), it just so happens that he is of American-European descent.He is a prisoner of war and should be treated as such, just as the allied troops would be if they were captured by the Taleban. How many Allied soldiers are of Arabic descent? The guy is a religious mercenary, instead of fighting for money he is fighting for something that binds much tighter, religious ideology.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: GUEST,Claymore
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 02:11 PM

Actually, as one who has participated in numerous special court martials, some generals and uncountable boards, while in the Corps, the really interesting question for me will be where they bring him ashore, if they do not decide he has effectively renounced his citizenship, and hand him back over to the Northern Alliance. Though I won't go into the doctrine of "Poorly caught, Well tried," (which some of the more vociferous would do well to understand), Federal jurisdiction will attach where Traitor John lands.

Most cases involving spying, etc. are tried at the Federal Courthouse in Alexandria, VA as that is where the DC airports are located. After several complicated cases were tried in front of Washington juries (which even the Washington Post, called "the most ignorant in the world") cases were routinely diverted to Alex.

You might recall that in the case of the last person to stain the White House, the prosecutor, Ken Starr, had one of the Lewinsky conversations taped in Northern VA so as to give him a predicate act to use in indicting Clinton in VA instead of DC where the population is black and Democratic. But here's the rub.

Suppose TJ is brought back to New York? It might be the only time that New Yorker's have to face their vaunted liberalism. And Bush can simply say "I put the question to those who suffered the most". If TJ gets off lightly, New York might suffer a second Ground Zero. If he gets the pointed stick, it will be the first time since their enacted but unused death penalty actually gets used.

If he's brought back to Alexandria, he'll be tried at a Court House that is six miles from the Pentagon, with a jury pool that is 60% military connected. And Virginia has the second highest death penalty rate in the nation.

I think the best bet would be to turn him over to the Northern Alliance. Since I understand that one of the penalties for traitors in "Ghan" is death of the traitors relatives, I can't imagine TJ's lawyer daddy getting in the way of a rather ad hoc tribal judicial system. But then again, it was the justice system that TJ wanted the world to have...


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Steve in Idaho
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 02:13 PM

Yes it is Kim C - and as a mercenary he also has no rights.

Misguided kid - give me a break

Steve


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: SINSULL
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 02:46 PM

I predict that within two weeks we will all be praying for Elian Gonzales to return to the front pages.

This young man seems to see himself as a warrior and martyr for Islam. My personal hope is that he is returned to the United States for trial and that his youth is taken into consideration.

Claymore, with or without the death penalty for John Walker, New York might still suffer a "second Ground Zero". I thought we all realized that.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 03:52 PM

I think the point I was trying to make is that WHATEVER is decided, he'll become the number one topic on all the late night shows,(like Elian and Monica and Chandra) and all America will debate the points we're discussing. My guess is that he'll have some kind of amazing conversion while in prison, get six months, and hopefully disappear into obscurity.

Rick


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: artbrooks
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 04:00 PM

Kim c said: "Back in the old days they called it treason and punishment was relatively swift. Ask Benedict Arnold if you don't believe me." Arnold fled to the British, was commissioned general in their army, and lived until 1801. Hope we have better luck this time.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: GUEST,sc
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 04:23 PM

Sorry, no use in me applyin' for this position. I can't cause I don't fit the job description...

Oughta be somebody here qualified, though. So many without sin, it seems - available to cast that first stone.

-sc


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: GUEST,Claymore
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 04:39 PM

Actually the more pertinent case might be John Brown, who was captured, tried, convicted, and hung within one month, (although I suspect that, had Arnold been caught, the time would be relatively the same.)

And Rick, while I agree that he'll be a topic on bitch-counter-bitch cable shows, he'll get a lot more than six months. My standing start guess is death, with a Bush commutation to life without parole. He'll also have to be kept in solitary, as any lifer in prison can get his commissary paid for the rest of his life, by sympathetic outsiders, if he can just gut TJ with a sharp spoon.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Gareth
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 06:21 PM

Questions?

Did J W leave the USA on a USA passport ?

If so, does not the USA passport have an endorsement regarding giving up US citizenship upon joining an Armed Forced owing allegiance elsewhere ?

If he is not a US citizen, how can he be tried for treason. No leave him to the Afghan people to deal with.

Gareth


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Sorcha
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 06:45 PM

I don't know that we can do anything. "They" are going to be doing all the doing.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: DougR
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 06:53 PM

I think he will be delt with by the U. S. military. I wouldn't predict how, though.

Using his age as an excuse for his treason doesn't hold water though. How old do you imagine the U. S. Marines he was fighting are? Probably the majority are under the age of 20. Many in the anti-Taliban forces may be much younger.

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: AliUK
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 07:07 PM

Well let me cast another stone ( as I have already cast my first one. If he was left to Afghan ( Northern Alliance) justice it wouldn't make much different because the Afghans change sides more often than Giselle Bunchen changes clothes. So all he would do is swear allegience to the Northern Alliance and he would be OK. So if he has given up his US citizenship ( as Gareth surmises) then he should be on his little prayer mat right this moment promising Allah everything to be turned over to the Afghans.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: tremodt
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 07:42 PM

JW could have been conscripted to fight like the Polish in world war 11 that were forced to fight with the Germans they fought us but we did did not do anything to them he is a mixed up kid give him a break

do not let him off scot free but give him some time nehind bars


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: DougR
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 09:18 PM

Hmmm. ro 1sin: Give him a break? From all I've seen and read, he wasn't conscripted as you suggest he might have. He's a kid alright, but so are the Marines he was trying very hard to kill while fighting with the Taliban!

Give him a break. Sure.

Question: Suppose one of our own had gone to the other side during the heat of battle. Should he have been given a break?

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: catspaw49
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 09:33 PM

Does anyone actually know if Walker gave up his US citizenship? Either through defection or through violation of passport regulation, does anyone actually know at this point?

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: GUEST,sc
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 09:37 PM

Folks,

I made my share of mistakes as a young man. I took things that did not belong to me. I struck people in anger. I used drugs. Got drunk a few times. I was arrested in 69 for MJ - good for life in prison at that time where I lived. But I was aquitted due to constitutional issues. I outgrew the rebel inside (maybe) and raised a family and paid taxes and did the WASP thing. Heck, I even considered voting Republican once.

This is not a psychopathic killer we're talking about. It's a deeply religious young man, led astray by religious zealots. (I've been there too - thank you but no, GTA).

I'm not saying this young man should go free but, damn, killing him is extreme. We aren't even certain he was shooting at us. Can't we wait 'til all the facts are in? Then give him time to meditate and mature in a place from which he can harm no one?


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Amos
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 09:49 PM

Please bear in mind also that he left the country long before the clash between the United States and the Taleban was an issue; he did not join an enemy force after the U.S. declared it an enemy as far as I have seen. So the question is WHEN he joined the Taleban. There is also a critical issue about the legal nature of treason when a war has been declared only by executive mandate, and not by legislative act. It is absolutely true that a warlike condition existed; but in terms of law the question of what war is and when it officially occurs has to be answered. It is possible the "cult" he joined was a civilian body entirely when he got drawn into it, rather than a military body.

All these points need legal clarification, especially the question of whether he actually legally renounced his citizenship. If he did, and did so before the "state of warlike relationships against terrorism" was defined (around 15 September I think), then it is even harder to see how treason enters into the equation.

I would like to see him forgiven his foolishness if only for his parents' sake; but I don't have the details of what he has actually done in specific. That makes it hard to see the rights of the matter, doesn't it?

A


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: catspaw49
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 10:09 PM

.........but I don't have the details of what he has actually done in specific. That makes it hard to see the rights of the matter, doesn't it?

Which is exactly the point which Sorcha made also. We don't have the whole story here by any means.

sc......An outstanding post. Thank you.

And why are we all willing to say he made a tragic mistake? Because we don't have the same beliefs as Islam? The Taliban may be completely horrific, but Jim Jones wasn't a cup of tea either now was he? People follow a belief and often are carried away by charismatic personalities to do all kinds of strange things, some extreme and murderous. But if the man had the belief, he had the belief. When was the last time you mad a bad decision beforehand? sc tells of his experiences and I'm sure at the time he didn't say, "Gee, I think I'll fuck up!" 35 or 40 years ago, a lot of people at 18 had to make decisions and we all did the "right" thing at the time. Later, in retrospect, we sit around and discuss our decisions and can see they had good parts, bad parts, or both.

Why not wait a bit before we hang this young man?

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Celtic Soul
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 10:11 PM

Oh my gawd. I am about to show how utterly secluded I am living life right now.

I thought this had to do with someone having a drinking problem, or maybe a recipe thread.

Sheesh...I need to buy a paper once in awhile. :/


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Sorcha
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 11:04 PM

'Spaw, I love it. "gee, I think I'll fuck up" as opposed to
"gee, I really did fuck up".
"Charismatic personalities"--doesn't that say it all? Take a new look at JFK and others in this light.

Even in my "idiot, tokin', droppin', Rebel years", I had sense enough to turn down a proopsal from a fundamentalist Muslim Iraqi.......I knew what would be required when I was transported to Iraq. He harassed, he stalked, he lurked--I just kept calling 911. His Visa was finally revoked. The "knowing" is what education is really all about.

Choose your religion, choose your culture, but be damn sure you know what you are choosing.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Janie
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 11:05 PM

JW may be a poor besotted misguided soul led astray by a "cult." Problem is...one can probably make the same argument about 90% of the terrorists in the world and most of the Taliban. Misquided, mixed up or not, we each of us have to be responsible for the choices we make. In this country we are legally accountable by age 18 in most instances. I haven't followed this story very closely, but I am not aware that Mr. Walker has expressed any sense of having been misquided and in fact said that he ultimately supported the 9-11 attacks.

I actually don't have an opinion about what should happen with him (at least for now.) I was unaware there were possibly two more Americans, but I think Rick asks a very good question re: will they receive different consideration (not just from the government but also from the talking heads and in other public discussion) if they are not ethnic WASPS?


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: GUEST,mgarvey@pacifier.com
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 11:16 PM

handcuff him to Jane Fonda and try them together. Give them the same sentance. mg


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Amos
Date: 10 Dec 01 - 11:56 PM

Last I heard the other two claimants had never been American citizens; they were Taleban Arabs who spoke passable English.

A.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 12:05 AM

Yah, Janie. My point exactly. I think public (and media) outcry will overide whatever the Govt. or Military want to do. And please forgive me for being so cynical (I'm always 'positive and up-beat' in my music posts) but I think whatever his next "physical image" is, will go a long way towards determining his fate. My guess is he'll appear soft-spoken, penitent, and 'cute'. That'll cut him a lot of slack on this continent.

Personally, I knew lots of kids years ago who adopted Eastern religions, became fanatically 'anti-materialist', and went off to foreign climes to 'find themselves'. The difference is that they didn't find themselves smack dab in the middle of a war.

Rick


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: katlaughing
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 10:14 AM

Celtic Soul, don't feel badly, I thought the same thing.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: DougR
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 01:32 PM

Right, Rick, and they didn't choose a side that opposed your own country.

I do not know whether or not he renounced his citizenship, or if he lost his citizenship. Haven't the foggiest at this point.

DougR


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Whistle Stop
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 02:13 PM

First, we should figure out the facts, so we're not all just talking out of our hats. Then, we should figure out the legalities, which will tell us whether he should be charged with treason or some other offense.

Assuming we conclude that he is not insane, and that he willingly took up arms against the US, we should prosecute him to the fullest extent of the law. He's young, but old enough to know better. I don't see any justification in letting him off just because we've got a soft spot for American kids.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: annamill
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 02:20 PM

I have a question about this whole thing. What exactly was the crime? Being an American? I only ask because we let all the other Taliban fighters GO HOME!!! Unless, of course, they were foreigners. I guess John falls into that catagory, but then why isn't he being treated like all the other foreign fighters. Why is he being brought home for trial? We didn't bring any of the others "home".

He made the decision, didn't he? Maybe it just happened too fast. I don't think any of the lowly Taliban knew what was planned and I don't think John knew either. All of a sudden, he's fighting his homeland. Wha happened?? He was there. What was he going to say? Hey! I can't be in this fight, I'M AN AMERICAN.. oops, dead!

I don't know. Just another decision I am unsure about.

Love, Annamill


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: LoopySanchez
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 03:58 PM

Johnny Taliban was interrogated by Mike Spann a few short hours before the prisoners rioted and took up arms against Spann and the other Americans guarding them. He knew that weapons had been smuggled in, and was aware of what was about to happen, yet didn't tell the Americans anything. Mike Spann died as a result of his actions. That is MURDER, pure and simple. Anyone who tries to use psychology to figure out his reasons for doing what he did is too concerned with making sure their heart bleeds a bright enough shade of red everyone else to see, and not concerned enough with justice. Somebody tell me where I'm wrong. Try to use logic and not "feelings" in the explanation. The only "feelings" I have are ones of sympathy for Spann's widow.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: annamill
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 04:08 PM

LS, You don't think he was kept separate from his comrades? Just asking.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: GUEST,Jenny the T
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 04:28 PM

This young man has landed himself in Big Trouble, for sure, but I'm not inclined to line up with the "shoot him now, talk about it later" crowd just yet.

Joining in with a foreign fight is a tradition of long standing in the U.S.--Yanks fought against the Fascists in Spain, flew with the RAF early in WWII, and flew with the Chinese against Japan. John Paul Jones himself helped establish the Czarist navy. We've provided idealists and mercenaries galore to causes good and bad for two centuries.

Young Mr. Walker started out the same as all the others--he joined the Taliban well before September 11. Keep in mind that we were not at war with the Taliban at the time, nor were the Taliban responsible for knocking down any American buildings--the Taliban's fight was with the Northern forces. In any case, at the time he joined up, our own government was on good terms with the Taliban--at least we were willing to give them a pile of drug-war money.

So, as of September 10, no problem and no treason, as long as he took no oaths that would negate his citizenship. And even at that, the US gov't has found it possible to forgive such oaths when it suited them (speaking of our boys in the RAF again).

His position turned terrible indeed after September 11, though--or more aptly, somewhat later, when the US decided to begin pummeling the Taliban. Seems to me he was well screwed whatever he did at that point--stay and fight, or try to get out of there--either way was most likeliest to buy him a bullet in the head.

If he wanted to be a Loyal American, he should've taken the bullet trying to get out of there, but I can't really blame him for not going that route. After all, when you've been part of a fighting unit, you build up an intense loyalty to your buddies. The result: he made himself an enemy of his home country.

Any of the aforementioned participants in foreign wars could have ended up just the same if the US had fallen in on the opposite side. That they are regarded as heroes now is due mainly to luck that their ideals and US politics agreed in the end.

So what do we do with him? What did we do with the 'brainwashees' from the Korean war? With 'collaborators' like William Garvey after Vietnam? With German- and Japanese-americans who ended up in the wrong uniform?

We mostly didn't shoot 'em. And this kid doesn't need to be shot now. That's just asinine.

JtT


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: AliUK
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 06:38 PM

Well here goes another stone. OK so the guy ( I refuse to cal him a kid as he is above the age of consent and an adult) converts to Islam and goes of to Afghanistan or wherever he went off to first and then Lo and behold he's in the middle of a war fighting against his former countrymen and their allies. The difference between smoking a little pot and taking up arms against others is a little wide to come into the same sphere as this ( even if it did constitute a long prison term at the time). Consciously joining an armed force and lifting up your weapons against YOUR country is treason. I was on the perifery of similar thoughts many years ago ( in the UK and the terrorists at the time were the iRA) though I sympathised with their cause, I did NOT sympathise with their means and always felt that a peaceful, political solution was the only way forward. The question with this man is the fact that he willingly went to war to defend HIS (adopted) country and HIS faith. I haven't seen Muhammed Ali taking up arms, is he not also a moslem? The example drawn with Jim Jones os another thing altogether, this was a cult ( along with those other idiots that topped themselves across the wold, including Waco which is a whole other story). This is an organised religion. What right has John Walker got as an American citizen? None. Because he renounced it just as I have renounced my British citizenship. He chose to become what he is just as I have. He is an Afghan and should be treated as such. But ishe a terrorist? I think that this is the question we are all missing.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Gary T
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 07:33 PM

Is he a terrorist? Not that we know of. He's a combatant.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Bobert
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 10:10 PM

It's not as much a question of what is become of John Walker but of all the Taliban who are taken prisoner. I belive we missed a wonderful opportunity to make history, rather than repeat it, after 9-11. Rather than declare war less than 48 hours after the attacks, we could have called for an international summit on peace and anti-terrorism. With the world's sentiments for the United Sates at it's highest level in history we could have shamed leaders who might otherwise support violence to get their particular greivences on the table to have to participate in a world dialog. Well, we missed that opportunity. Our next opportunity is right around the corner. How we deal with prisoners will say a lot about what we are about in terms of our beliefs of the sanctity of life and our collective hopes for the future. Killing these folks after some kind of tribunal is as barbaric as the events of 9-11 and will do no more than justify those events...


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: catspaw49
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 10:28 PM

Ali, I was trying to make the point as you did, but much better I might add, that doing things as Walker did is a conscious decision and as far as I can tell at this point, hge is more Taliban than "American" and should be treated in the same way. The idea that becasue he's an american, it's now treason......it doesn't wash.

As to the Taliban and the conduct of the "war"....Bobert, you old hick, I could not agree more. We had a great chance to go for peace and also to take down the Taliban by proceeding with deliberation, building true coalitions, squeezing the financial and political elements like a python, and generally making ourselves into benevolent knights on white horses. Then when the need for fighting came, which it probably still would have, we would have had the world really behind us. Time was on our side, but Americans have classically not been patient people. Many felt we waited too long as it was.

There are still too many unanswered questions of fact about the Walker situation. If the scenario Loopy Sanchez portrays is true, the real question is still what are we going to do with the rest, not just Walker. Does anyone really know what his status is? Still too many unanswered questions.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Bobert
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 11:20 PM

Treat him exactly the way that the other Taliban fighters are treated....but no killing. That's the difference. Examine alternatives. Think of how America's kids will read this chapter of history in about 20 years and think of how we would like for these kids to think about our courage to defeat the past and dare to change history, rather than repeat it. Either life counts or it doesn't. There ain't a lot of middle ground on this one...


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Lepus Rex
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 11:57 PM

Well, I'm with the 'he's not a traitor, he's a combatant' group, I guess. I think some people need to think beyond the "Hey, he sided with those violent, swarthy fellows who are fond of exotic headwear! Terrorist! Traitor!" type headlines. The Taleban have plenty of faults, but they aren't terrorists. The Taleban didn't crash any planes. Mullah Muhammad Omar didn't mastermind anything other than his own downfall. (Oops! He's not really all that bright, you see...) Hillbillies, folks. Not terrorists.

So, this Walker guy went to Afghanistan to fight for the Taleban government, and that's all he did when the U.S. invaded his adopted homeland. How's that make him a traitor? He'd be a traitor if he'd have switched sides and fought for the U.S., but then he'd be a HERO, I s'pose. :P

On a related subject... "The American Taleban." Grr. If I hear a CNN anchor refer to Mr.Walker as "The American Taleban" ONE MORE TIME, I will drive down to CNN headquarters in Klanistan, hunt down Bill Hemmer, bitch-slap him until that stupid fucking toupee falls off, and then CALMLY explain to him that 'Taleban' is PLURAL. If you feel the need to give the guy a cutesy label, call him "The American Taleb," you IGNORANT MULE-BLOWING BASTARD. Aaaaarrrgh.

Same with "Talebans." STOP IT. PLEASE STOP IT.

:)

---Lepus Rex


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Amos
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 12:06 AM

Geeze Rex, you're getting awful picky about clarity of communication here. Isn't the important thing that we kill them?? Let's stay focused here!!!

A.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Lepus Rex
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 12:12 AM

You're absolutely right, Amos. I've lost sight of the true path. I'm taking an overdose of Ari Fleischer and going straight to bed. :)

---Lepus Rex


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: heric
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 12:46 AM

When I skimmed the first few posts, I found it hard to get interested in the whole subject. But then it never crossed my mind that anyone would be thinking about killing him! Never crossed my mind. It just seemed likely that he would have his citizenship revoked. That's a very serious penalty if you have no other citizenship. In my mind I was wondering if they would do something so serious to him. But killing him??? I can't imagine.


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Spud Murphy
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 02:17 AM

When I worked in Afghanistan in 1947-48 the partitioning of India was going on and resulted in the War in Kashmir(Which isn't over yet) There was an employee of MKA at that time working at Girishk (100 miles west of Kandahar) who jumped his contract and joined the Pakistan Army as a Colonel. At that time I was working on a survey crew quartered in the town of Torkham, in the Khyber Pass.

This man was an American citizen who had joined the Canadian army in 1939 and was decorated for valour at Dieppe while with a Canadian Commando Bn. After Dieppe he was mustered out of the Canadian Army and enlisted in the U.S. Army Airborne, (101st Bn., I suppose, because he was decorated again at Bastogne)

Eventually, this man became persona non grata to both the Indians and the Pakistanis and several attempts were made on his life. His troubles in that regard stemmed from the fact that at that time the issues of partition were not fully resolved, as I guess they still aren't, butIndia and Pakistan still shared the same Grandfather back in Jolly Olde England and the touchy diplomatic situation that was created by partition and the Kashmir situation wasn't being helped by having an American soldier of fortune at large in the war zone.

I met him in Karachi where we were both staying at the Bristol Hotel; I, my contract completed, waiting out my steamship transportation back to America, and he awaiting the disposition of the matter of his citizenship. The ruling as I understood it at the time was direct and simple: Bear arms for another country and your citizenship in the U.S. is forfeit. Perod. He had reached the point where nobody, including Canada and Great Britain, wanted him and the U.S. was refusing to allow him entry. But, what about his service time in the Canadian Army? Or subsequently, in the U.S. Army?

Unfortunately, my ship hove in to port about then and I left Pakistan before the thing was resolved, so I can't report to you what the outcome was, although a fellow worker of MKA thatI ran into later thought the U.S. took him back out of compassion for the Brits and to avoid international embarrassment. When I left on the steamship he gave me a letter to be mailed from New Orleans when I got there, addressed to his family in Ohio.

I don't think there really are any rules. I think these things are all negotiable, Depending on the politics involved, who your friends are, and in those days, the colour of your skin.

Spud


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Wolfgang
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 10:27 AM

Should Mr. Walker be treated as the other Taleban are?
Lord Haw-Haw was treated differently from (other) German radio announcers after the war. Each country has always made a difference between combatants fighting for their own country or fighting with the enemy against their own country.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 11:46 AM

I noticed today that the "conversion" I mentioned earlier may already be taking place. This from CNN: Apparently he's "warned" America to be prepared for a biological warfare attack that "will" happen before Sunday. So either he's seeing the "error of his ways",(can Pat Robertson be far behind?) or they beat it out of him with a stick. Either way, for a simple Taliban grunt, he seems to be very well informed about their military strategy. I'm seeing serious "spin" goin' on here folks.

Rick


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Subject: RE: BS: John Walker. What to do?
From: annamill
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 01:08 PM

Rick, I was just reading on the CNN site that the info he was giving were only rumors he had heard, and the American Government is taking the knowledge with the grain. (of salt)

L.A.


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