Rep. Peter King (R-NY) is in the news this week for demanding that journalists who publish leaks about national security be arrested and prosecuted. On Fox News just now, he called for Glenn Greenwald specifically to be prosecuted for publishing the documents former NSA contractor Edward Snowden leaked to The Guardian.
Considering his history of supporting the Irish Republican Army and its obscene violence, it's not exactly surprising that King wants to use guns to silence people. It is somewhat surprising (to me, at least) that anybody takes him seriously in light of his record of support for the IRA, and that bookers continue to put his thuggish mug in front of a camera.
As Greenwald put it just now, "Only In America can a renowned and devoted terrorism supporter like Peter King be the arbiter of national security and treason."
"We must pledge ourselves to support those brave men and women who this very moment are carrying forth the struggle against British imperialism in the streets of Belfast and Derry," Mr. King told a pro-I.R.A. rally on Long Island, where he was serving as Nassau County comptroller, in 1982. Three years later he declared, "If civilians are killed in an attack on a military installation, it is certainly regrettable, but I will not morally blame the I.R.A. for it."
But that was so long ago, you might say. In response, I'll direct you to former Reasoner Michael Moynihan's piece on how King hasn't changed:
There are a few King quotes in circulation, recycled and repeated in every story about his previous support for armed republicanism (of the Irish variety), though no one has dug up a transcript of his debate with brave former IRA member-turned-supergrass Sean O'Callaghan, who King compared to Benedict Arnold (and Adams to George Washington). Nor has it been pointed out that after the IRA's famously savage 1985 attack on theNewry RUC barracks, which even they admitted was deserving of criticism, King issued a statement reaffirming his support for the terrorist group.
But it is often argued that he rethought his position on the IRA—and the morality and efficacy of murdering political opponents—after the 9/11 attacks; a line King's Republican apologists have uncritically accepted. After the gruesome 2005 murder of Robert McCartney, in which IRA knuckle draggers beat and stabbed the father of two to death in a Belfast pub, King warned those outraged by the savage attack against a "rush to be too sanctimonious." And now The Guardian writes that "the congressman dismisses attempts to draw a parallel between IRA and al-Qaida, arguing that the IRA never carried out attacks on US soil, and that his only loyalty was to the US," though curiously fails to provide a quote from King.
In other words, he's not sorry for supporting the IRA. So while his committee recounts heart-wrenching stories of victims of Islamic terrorism, I offer to loan King my copy of Lost Lives, a detailed account of how every victim of "the Troubles" died and who was responsible for their murder.
Keep King's record in mind whenever he flaps his jowls about terrorism.