Fox News commentator Jonathan Hoenig on Saturday apologized for his comments about the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II.

In a discussion of profiling during the previous week’s broadcast of “Cashin’ In,” Hoenig said, “We should have been profiling on Sept. 12, 2001. Let’s take a trip down memory lane here. The last war this country won, we put Japanese Americans in internment camps. We dropped nuclear bombs on residential city centers. Yes, profiling would be at least a good start.”

Jonathan Hoenig
Jonathan Hoenig

In response to protests from Asian American leaders and organizations, including the JACL and Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, who said he was trying to justify a policy that the government has admitted was wrong, Hoenig said at the end of Saturday’s broadcast:

“I want to issue a sincere apology for my remarks on last week’s ‘Cashin’ In,’ which I believe were unfortunately misinterpreted. The internment of Japanese Americans during World War II was completely immoral. I’ve never defended it.

“In the context of our discussion on profiling, my point was to illustrate that profiling potential threats based on ideology could be a needed safeguard, and in the context of wartime, I believe being able to identify an enemy’s ideology, and be on the alert for it, is the first step to actually achieving peace.”

In a Sept. 25 post entitled “When Subtlety Is Lost” on his “Capitalist Pig” blog, Hoenig wrote, “It’s called ‘confirmation bias.’ People hear what they want to hear, instead of looking at the context and meaning of what was actually said.

“My comments regarding profiling on last week’s ‘Cashin’ In’ did not praise the internment of Japanese Americans — quite the contrary. The point was to illustrate the brutal lengths this country went to win that war.

“I do not believe nor did I ever suggest internment was moral or even effective, only that, historically, profiling potential threats based on ideology during a time of war would have never been questioned, let alone objected to.

“As I’ve repeatedly stressed on ‘Cashin’ In,’ I believe the proper way to address Islamic totalitarianism is to declare and undertake a total war, which, if capably led, would not require the violation of anyone’s individual rights.”

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  1. Just wanted to let you know that German Americans and Italian Americans were also interned in the U.S. During WWII. I am an American of German descent who was locked up at 12.
    There were more than 50 internment camps and detention centers which held Americans of German and Italian descent.

    Major, USAF Retired
    Tempe, AZ