Hari vs. Liddy


Johann Hari, the bright young liberal-hawk columnist from London's Independent newspaper, locks horns with G. Gordon Liddy. Excerpt:

"So—where do we begin?" he says. I try to smile back and say as sweetly as I can, "How about with Adolf Hitler?"

Then later:

While the Nixon administration was spraying tonnes of napalm and poison over Vietnam, he complained the policy was "too soft." He says now, "I wanted to bomb the Red River dykes. It would have drowned half the country and starved the other half. There would have been no way the Viet Cong could have operated if we had the will-power to do that." […]

So all of the conventions created in the wake of the Second World War—the Geneva Conventions, the very concept of war crimes—these are all just polite fictions to be crumpled? "Of course. The Seventh Infantry Division in 1945 used to drive their tanks around with the heads of defeated Japanese solders displayed proudly on the front. That's what we need to train our present-day soldiers to be." […]

"The war in Vietnam was fought on the streets of America too," he says. "It was lost here at home, by people who didn't have the Will to win. We had to get the people who wanted America to lose." Including killing columnists? "If they were traitors as Jack Andersen was, directly helping the enemy, then yes."