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Bill Maher: Some in Army ‘Are Psychopaths...It’s the One Place Where You Can Kill People for Free’

Bill Maher just can’t resist denigrating those who choose to join our military forces. Catching up with a comment from his Friday night show on HBO, when discussing what motivates soldiers to want to re-join their units and what they miss when back in civilian life, war correspondent Sebastian Junger explained: “The soldiers aren’t psychopaths, they don’t miss killing, they don’t miss getting killed, but what they miss is that sense of meaning and the bond...”

To which, Maher countered: “Well, some of them are psychopaths. I mean, let’s be honest. Some people join the Army because it’s the one place where you can kill people for free. Where you’re not charged with murder.”

Maher at least conceded: “I’m not saying that’s the main component of it, but I mean that is some attraction.”

Audio: MP3 clip

Junger, making an appearance to plug his Thursday night HBO documentary on a colleague killed in Libya, Which Way is the Frontline from Here: The Life and Times of Tim Heatherington, gently pushed back: “There are probably psychopaths in every population. But the guys that I knew out there actually were, they were incredibly aware of the Afghans because they knew if they alienated the local population they would be in more danger. And they were really, really careful, actually.”

From the Friday, April 5 Real Time with Bill Maher:

SEBASTIAN JUNGER: Everything has a kind of intensity. The soldiers aren’t psychopaths, they don’t miss killing, they don’t miss getting killed, but what they miss is that sense of meaning and the bond that arises in that situation. You know, platoon, most of the guys in a platoon would risk their life for everyone else in the platoon. You can’t recreate that back home and that’s what they miss.

BILL MAHER: Well, some of them are psychopaths. I mean, let’s be honest. Some people join the Army because it's the one place where you can kill people for free. Where you're not charged with murder. I'm not saying that's the main component of it, but I mean that is some attraction

JUNGER: There are probably psychopaths in every population. But the guys that I knew out there actually were, they were incredibly aware of the Afghans because they knew if they alienated the local population they would be in more danger. And they were really, really careful, actually.

-- Brent Baker is Vice President for Research and Publications at the Media Research Center. Click here to follow Brent Baker on Twitter.