"...what about others such as the Somali “militants” who may wish to do us harm but have not actually done so? Are we certain that they have the capability of mounting some kind of attack? Absent any overt act, is there a point at which antipathy toward the United States, even hatred, becomes a capital offense?" Robinson
It seems to me that war has become a permanent state of existence in the minds of many of those who make their living from war. I am not referring here to the sworn warriors who bear the many burdens of war. No, I am referring to the war profiteers, those who make the instruments of destruction and those whose theses, journal articles, diisertations, books, and "advice" fuel the juggernaut. The money to be made from such endeavors is splendid and the 'gift that keeps on giving."
The civilian defense "intelligentsia" occupy a world of their own in; universities, think tanks, federally funded research institutes, and associated journalism. They are, in many ways, a closed club. I notice that many of these people do not have interests outside their trade. Film, literature, the arts, these things are thought of as frivolous distractions from the serious business of reading each others' papers, and stroking each other at meetings. As in any pseudo scholarly grouping, the level of "group think" is striking. The main thing in any such guild is to remain acceptable to the consensus, and so consensus must be sought, even if the consensus is a proclivity for killing.
It is also striking that few of these people have ever done war. They usually think that their research trips are equivalent to combat service. Amusing. pl