This article is not a partisan statement, although it unequivocally judges the rising tide of nationalism, isolationism, xenophobia, and anti-Islamic rhetoric occurring throughout the West. While anti-Islamic rhetoric and actions are integral to the scenario described herein, the characters are fictional and not analogous to any military or political figure currently in a position of authority or running for office. The political affiliation of the President in the scenario is deliberately unstated. No political party has a monopoly on or immunity from ugly ideas.
The concept for this article began with what I thought was a wildly unlikely hypothetical situation of military involvement in the internment of American citizens. Nationalistic, xenophobic discourse in Europe and the United States led me to wonder about the moral and constitutional implications of the military’s refusal to follow such guidance from civilian authorities, should it be directed.