The internment wars take a turn for the worse

A week or two ago, I offered this comment on Michelle Malkin’s book In Defense of Internment. I highly recommended the book and found it persuasive on a number of important scores, but disagreed with Michelle to the extent that she argues the internment ultimately was justified.
Michelle has engaged in a long-running debate with historian Greg Robinson and law professor Eric Muller over the her revisionist claims regarding the internment. Robinson and Muller fired their opening salvo when Muller was guest-blogging on the Volokh conspiracy. Muller even enlisted Power Line briefly and, we thought, somewhat unfairly in a post called With Friends Like These (scroll to Aug. 23). Michelle’s take on where the debate stands now, as well as links to some of Muller’s latest points, can be found here.
Now, a group called the Historians’ Committee for Fairness has denounced Michelle’s book and alleged that Michelle’s “appearance on numerous television and radio shows and her comments during these appearances regarding her book represent a blatant violation of professional standards of objectivity and fairness.” The Committee goes on to demand that the television and radio shows on which Michelle has appeared “formally apologize to the Japanese Americans who have been slandered by Ms. Malkin’s reckless presentation and invite a reputable historian to present a more even-handed view of the evidence.” Robinson and Muller are both members of the Committee. The letter in question appears on Muller’s blog.
Eugene Volokh, proprietor of the blog where the debate began, does a nice job of explaining how the historians’ rhetoric makes their substantive rhetoric look like an effort to “guard professional turf.” Michelle’s view of the Committee’s letter is here.


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