December 8, 2001


John Phillip Walker Lindh, the 20-year-old American, turned bin Laden-Al-Qaeda-trained Taliban fighter, is more likely a "made in the U.S.A" poster boy for an American tragedy than he is a traitor.

Four years before his fateful journey, Lindh was high school kid, from what appears to be a sterile family living in the California bastion of leftist anti-Americanism, who was given an assignment to read Malcolm X's autobiography, which set him on an unabated Islamic course through hate-America cultures in Yemen, Pakistan and Afghanistan to become a mortal enemy of his own country.

While fighting for the Taliban, young Lindh was taken prisoner but did not reveal himself as an American until after he was wounded in a bloody prison uprising. If he had done so, as he was interviewed by CIA agent Johnny "Mike" Spann outside the Qala-I-Jangi fortress, Spann's life might have been spared.

Still, prosecuting Lindh for treason might not be an appropriate in this case. Rather, there should be an indictment of a wrong-headed education establishment that undermines student's minds about America, and another against superficial, selfish interests and extreme elements of our society, which erode so many families and relationships.

One thing, however, is patently clear. Being taken into custody by his fellow Americans is probably the only reason Lindh survived summary execution by opposition Afghan forces.

Daniel B. Jeffs, founder
The Direct Democracy Center