Ain’t that sweet. Janet Napolitano is “very contrite” over her department’s warning that returning vets might join right-wing militias. Reports the Washington Post:
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano apologized directly today to Commander Dave Rehbein, head of the American Legion, after a recently leaked DHS intelligence report suggested that right-wing extremist groups might recruit military veterans returning from overseas deployments. The 45-minute meeting occurred at DHS headquarters in Washington this afternoon.
A detailed account of the meeting from the American Legion states that “Hunched forward with head bowed, the Secretary of Homeland Security looked the National Commander of The American Legion straight in the eye and said, very quietly, ‘I’m sorry, Dave.'”
“The report was not worthy of this department, or of veterans,” Napolitano said to Rehbein, according Legion spokesman Craig Roberts, who attended the meeting. “It was very badly written and should never have been released,” she said.
The secretary “was very contrite” and that both her words and body language reflected her sincerity, Roberts said in an interview.
In her own written statement after the meeting Napolitano said, “We connected meaningfully about the important issues that have emerged over recent days, and I offered him my sincere apologies for any offense to our veterans caused by this report.”
At one level it is good that the usual Washington game still plays out even when the slur is made against the Right. Whatever Napolitano’s personal feelings, politics forced her to make the pilgrimage to the American Legion.
But the fact that she allegedly “connected meaningfully,” whatever that means, with Legion officials cannot disguise the fact that the department report reflects what some on the Left really imagine–if you don’t believe in the Leviathan state taxing and spending all your money, and you have some connection to guns (whether in or out of the military), you are a threat to a liberal social order. We saw the same mindset with the TSA’s grilling of the employee of Ron Paul’s Campaign for Liberty because he was carrying cash from a conference he had organized.
Napolitano contrite. We’ll see. How long do you think before the Department of Homeland Security launches its next attack on individual liberty?