Was Fort Hood Terror or Something Worse?
“It’s not a question of security per se, but of political correctness gone haywire.” Ralph Peters, US Army Retired and Military Analyst
We should not get caught up in whether Major Nidal Malik Hasan was a terrorist or not. He may not have been Al Qaeda, but at the moment he opened fire on innocent, mostly unarmed people at Fort Hood, that was a terrorist act. There was initial relief when it was reported he was dead. Most of us knew if Maj. Hasan survived, then the talk would be about him and not the great human loss he caused. Later, we found out he had survived.
It was a hard reality to grasp that the shooter was a soldier of rank, a trained medical professional. Then, after hours of spinning the news, I began to wonder, how this could have happened in our Army.”
Initial reaction from my contacts inside the military was swift. There are concerns about Muslim officers and enlisted soldiers and the extent they are not treated the same as their non-Muslim counterparts. They believe the politically correct “Power Point generals” don’t want to treat Muslim soldiers just like everyone else.
Ralph Peters, a retired Army officer and military analyst, said, “It’s not a question of security per se, but of political correctness gone haywire. Had Major Hasan been a white Christian or Jew, his butt would’ve been out on the street years ago. But Muslims are a protected species in our military.” Peters went on to say, “Radical Muslim chaplains? Still on duty. Muslim psychiatrist (of all things) praises suicide bombers on the web and tries to convert his patients to Islam? Hush-hush. And so we have 51 patriots (not merely 44, as previously reported) gunned down, with 13 dead. And our president and his generals won’t even use the word "terror," let alone the phrase "Islamist terror." Political correctness killed those Americans at Ft. Hood as surely as did the Muslim fanatic who pulled the trigger.”
The military service should be a protected class with high standards. They are the last line of defense of this republic. The military services owe it to us, and to their members, to root out any people like Major Hasan. This is political correctness in its worst form.
In a pool report from AP reporters in the field wrote, “In retrospect, the signs of Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan’s growing anger over the U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan seem unmistakable. But even people who worried his increasingly strident views were clouding his ability to serve the U.S. military could not predict the murderous rampage of which he now stands accused.” While they may not have been able to predict it, they sure as hell shouldn’t have kept this man in the Army dealing with any soldiers on any level.
There are multiple reports of Hasan stating the war on terror was "a war on Islam" and he struggled with what to tell fellow Muslim solders that had their doubts about fighting in Islamic countries. At that moment, he should have been moved or discharged. If you can’t support the mission, you shouldn’t be in the Army.
Dr. Val Finnell studied public health with Hasan at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland in 2007-2008. He observed Hasan’s growing anti-American sentiment and said, “The system is not doing what it’s supposed to do. He at least should have been confronted about these beliefs, told to cease and desist, and to shape up or ship out." Finnell noted Hasan persistently complained about perceived anti-Muslim sentiment in the military and injected his politics into courses where they had no place.
The Army has a duty to follow its own Warrior Ethos. It says, “I am an American Soldier. I am a Warrior and a member of a team. I serve the people of the United States and live the Army Values. I will always place the mission first. I will never accept defeat. I will never quit. I will never leave a fallen comrade. I am disciplined, physically and mentally tough, trained and proficient in my warrior tasks and drills. I always maintain my arms, my equipment and myself. I am an expert and I am a professional. I stand ready to deploy, engage, and destroy the enemies of the United States of America in close combat. I am a guardian of freedom and the American way of life. I am an American Soldier.”
We now know the names of the 13 killed. Pvt. Francheska Velez of Chicago, Illinois was 3 months pregnant. The Army did not follow the Warrior Ethos for these Fort Hood soldiers and one civilian. The people who knew about Maj. Hasan and did nothing did not do their duty and they will have to live with that. I hope the Army and military services learn from this. It is a privilege to be in the uniformed serviced of the United States of America. They can take care of the threats that come from the outside, but they need the commitment from their command to protect them from the inside.
Rest in Peace to the victims of the Fort Hood massacre and Godspeed to those injured so that they will recover quickly and completely. Let this tragedy be the catalyst to fix the culture of political correctness that infects the military services. They can’t win any war in a politically correct environment.