April 06, 2003
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A Reader Reports Academic Evidence On Diversity vs. Social Capital
From: An Army Reader
This article ( "Immigrant Soldiers - officials estimate there are 31,000 foreign nationals serving in US Military," Wall Street Journal, April 4) suggests a couple of things.
(1) The U.S. Armed Forces, particularly the Army and Marines, are growing more like the regulars of the 19th century, with lots of foreigners among the long service personnel. Phil Sheridan's NCO aide was, for instance, a 30-year veteran from Ireland who never bothered to become a citizen. These people frequently make good soldiers. But their loyalty is to the service not the country. They would have no qualms about turning their weapons on U.S. citizens. A hundred years ago this meant some strikers might get fired on. Today what you see being unleashed on Iraq could be used on some place in the U.S. if the will of the central government was being thwarted. Just imagine something like the Klamath water dispute turning into armed resistance and you have a good scenario. The Republicans might have sense enough not to push things to that point, but the ilk of Hillary are bound to occupy the White House one day and who can tell where their combined green agenda, civilian disarmament passions and generalized hatred for average normal Americans would take them?
(2) The number of potential sleeper agents is certainly increased with hosts of foreigners in the ranks.
Increasingly the U.S. Armed Forces are becoming the Imperial Legions (PC version).
Not exactly what the Founders had in mind.
Peter Brimelow comments: Immigration Enthusiast Central must have put out a bulletin on this argument du jour – exasperated readers are sending us lots of examples from the parrot press. As usual, it depends for its effectiveness on the parrot press's continuous and constant suppression of countervailing stories that show immigrants in a bad light – immigrant crime, immigrant terrorism (even when immigrant soldiers are implicated), immigrant failure to assimilate. This is what I called in Alien Nation "America's One-Way Immigration Debate."
As "An Army Reader" shows, this argument also depends on total historical ignorance. The British Empire did very well with its Irish Catholic regiments (click here for a wonderful picture of the Munster Fusiliers receiving Absolution before the annihilating battle at Rue de Bois in 1915). This did not mean however, that there were no political problems in Ireland. Nor do immigrant soldiers in the U.S. Army mean there is no problem with America's immigration policy.