Last week, Columbia University assistant professor Dr. Nicholas De Genova, one of several speakers at an anti-war “teach-in” stated that, “the only true heroes are those that find ways that help defeat the US military.” This being bad enough, he went on to say that he hoped to see a “million Mogadishus” – a reference to the deadly 1993 firefight in the capitol of Somalia that cost the lives of 19 American soldiers as well as nearly 3000 Somalis. Now, it is one thing to be against this war as many Americans are. It is something completely different to advocate the death and mutilation of US soldiers. Even other professors who were involved with the event were appalled by his comments. Columbia History professor Dr. Eric Foner, one of the event’s organizers stated shortly after the event, “If I had known what he was going to say, I would have been reluctant to have him speak.” Foner later even went so far as to call De Genova’s comments, “idiotic.”
I think “idiotic” is too mild; I think that it should be stated here that Dr. De Genova is an anti-American traitor, in my humble opinion, anyway. While I think expressing disagreement with our being at war is perfectly acceptable for whatever one’s reason is, expressing your desire to see US forces defeated and mutilated by a regime as brutal and tyrannical as Saddam’s, is not the expression of one who is a loyal American. They are the expressions of one who is against not only the policy, but against the nation itself. They are in fact the thoughts of one who is giving moral support to Saddam Hussein. To Slobodan Milosevic. To Mohammed Farah Adid. To everyone we have ever fought against.
Of course, I don’t expect those that believe that their pursuit of being an intellectual outweighs practical reality to agree with me. They probably think his comments were valid. For his part, De Genova claims his comments were taken out of context with no consideration “of the perspective that framed the remark.” Perhaps the distinguished doctor should have articulated his meaning more clearly. I won’t make that mistake here. Dr. De Genova, you are a traitor. If the bitter taste of that is unpalatable to you, I am truly sorry-you should have thought about that before you opened your mouth.
Scott Wacholtz is a senior majoring in political science. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.