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2002 Thinking through Internment

Thinking through Internment

Thinking through Internment: 12/7 and 9/11, 28 AMERASIA 42-50 (2002) (peer-reviewed).

  • reprinted in 9 ASIAN L.J. 195 (2002) and in ASIAN AMERICANS ON WAR AND PEACE 55-63 (RUSSELL C. LEONG & DON T. NAKANISHI, EDS. 2002).


The terrorist attacks on 9-11 have frequently been analogized to Pearl Harbor. In many ways, the analogy is apt. Just as that attack launched us into World War Il, the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon have launched us into a new kind of war against terrorism. But waging this sort of borderless war poses great risks, not only to the soldiers commanded to fight but also to core American values. In this way, Pearl Harbor raises other disturbing memories, those of the internment. In this essay, Professor Kang draws lessons from the internment of Japanese Americans to the current war on terror.

  • Keywords: internment, terrorism, civil liberties, 9-11, profiling
  • [download published version @ SSRN]