This twisting of history by Obama’s Defense Department is an abomination. While Jeh C. Johnson, the DOD’s General Counsel, bases this interpretation on a tortured reading of King’s reference to the Good Samaritan in his last speech (yeah, ‘cuz the Good Samaritan was packing military grade heat!), this is really typical for an America that has been defined more and more by the sort of bellicose militarism Dr. King abhorred. The key part of King’s Riverside speech is:
“This I believe to be the privilege and the burden of all of us who deem ourselves bound by allegiances and loyalties which are broader and deeper than nationalism and which go beyond our nation’s self-defined goals and positions. We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for the victims of our nation and for those it calls “enemy,” for no document from human hands can make these humans any less our brothers.”
It’s hard to believe that a guy who stood for speaking for the voiceless “victims of our nation” and who considered “enemies” to be his “brothers” would approve of drone attacks and black-site prisons at Bagram. For those interested in the real Martin Luther King Jr. and not the clever simulacrum of the man produced by Pentagon propaganda (like those animatronic bears at Disney’s Magic Kingdom) please go read the speech, “A Time to Break Silence,” delivered at Riverside Church, New York City on April 4, 1967.