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Yoo at Berkeley: I’m ‘A Shining Beacon of Capitalism and Democracy Surrounded by a Sea of Marxism’

Carol J. Williams profiles John Yoo, who provides some of the most deliciously boastful quotes this side of a James Bond movie. He’s done, he thinks, with the

Tyrese Griffin
News
Last updated: Jul 31, 2020 | Mar 29, 2010

Carol J. Williams profiles John Yoo, who provides some of the most deliciously boastful quotes this side of a James Bond movie. He’s done, he thinks, with the campaign to prosecute him for his advice during the Bush years: “I hope that this closes this chapter in trying to use criminal and ethical charges to carry out political fights against the policy of a past administration.” But he has the most fun tweaking his colleagues and his academic environment.

“I think of myself as being West Berlin during the Cold War, a shining beacon of capitalism and democracy surrounded by a sea of Marxism,” Yoo observes, sipping iced tea in the faculty club lounge, a wan smile registering the discomfort of colleagues walking by en route to the bar.

He sees his neighbors as the human figures of “a natural history museum of the 1960s,” the Telegraph Avenue tableau of a graying, long-haired, pot-smoking counterculture stuck in the ideology’s half-century-old heyday.

“It’s like looking at the panoramic displays of troglodytes sitting around the campfire with their clubs. Here, it’s tie-dye and marijuana. It’s just like the 1960s, with the Vietnam War still to protest.”

Troglodytes!

Tyrese Griffin | Tyrese started her education in the performing arts at the prestigious Alexander Hamilton Academy in Los Angeles. She returned to civilian life after serving in the United States Army as a tracked vehicle operator, and started writing short stories and screenplays, as well as directing short films and music videos. She has published six novels, which have sold over 200,000 copies, as well as audiobooks and short stories for anthologies, and has earned several awards.

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