Almost immediately after news of the name of the shooter at Ft. Hood was made public, the left and the media girded it’s loins and prepared to do battle, to defend Major Nidal Hasan, the Army psychiatrist who killed 13 and wounded 31 more before being brought down by two civilian police officers. Not defending the killing of course; that was beyond the abilities of even the New York Times to pull off, but defend him from his own motives.
The Nation was first out of the box with it’s defense: Any mention of Major Hasan’s religion was Islamophobia. Of course I’m suspicious of any word that tries to medicalize an opinion. That’s like saying some opinions are akin to a mental illness. That’s not even two steps away from an old Soviet psychiatric hospital. Phobias are of course irrational fears, so I’ll let the reader determine if they think any suspicion about a radical islamist ideology is “irrational” or not. Certainly Janet Napolitano, Homeland Security Secretary, seems to be more worried about an anti-Muslim backlash than the current anti-infidel one.
That’s different of course from plain old prejudice and bigotry. Which of course, you can also be accused of for noting that Hasan said “allu akbar” before his rampage. If a Christian says something like, “in the name of Jesus Christ the Redeemer, take that!” and opens up on a crowd of innocents, we don’t question that the gunman probably had some sort of religious motivation. Allu Akbar? Nothing to see here, move along…
Speaking of Allu Akbar, CNN tried to edit that phrase right out of it’s coverage. As the milblog Mudville Gazette demonstrates, CNN went back and re-edited the article that interviewed PVT Joseph Foster, who heard MAJ Hasan yell “Allah[sic] Akbar!” to try to imply that Foster may or may not have heard it. CNN, hard at work with the defense team already.
Almost immediately after news of the shooting began, the internet began to buzz with the name of …Timothy McVeigh. Why McVeigh? What does McVeigh have to do with this incident? Nothing of course except… religious extremism? Yes, apparently, in the collective mind of the left, McVeigh is some sort of Christian Terrorist; a factum that had never came out during the investigation or trial. McVeigh, although raised Catholic, variously identified himself as either agnostic or atheist. Apparently having blond hair is enough to have your religion classified as Christian in the minds of the American left. I’m sure Christian ministers from Sao Paulo to Nairobi will be surprised by this.
McVeigh makes a poor defense for Hasan though, even by the standards of the left, but hey, if you throw enough stuff on the wall, some of it should stick. But what’s stickier than McVeigh is just being plain crazy. Dr. Phil made exactly that point when he asked, “how far out of touch with reality do you have to be to kill your fellow Americans . . . this is not a well act.” Alan Colmes, normally a not-too-crazy liberal, made essentially the same point on the O’Reilly Factor:
COLMES: It’s an isolated incident. It’s one guy who went crazy.
CROWLEY: It’s about closing Gitmo.
COLMES: No, it’s not.
CROWLEY: It’s about matriculating these guys into the criminal justice system.
COLMES: It’s about.
CROWLEY: Come on, Alan.
COLMES: .you’ve got an incredible overreaction to one crazy person.
CROWLEY: He was not crazy. And he’ll tell you he’s not crazy.
CROWLEY: He’s just like Zacarias Moussaoui stood up in a U.S. court and said, I’m not crazy, I’m al Qaeda. And this is typical American B.S.
O’REILLY: I don’t know why.
CROWLEY: .which is exactly what it is .
O’REILLY: Colmes, I don’t know why you’re saying he’s crazy. He seems to be lucid.
COLMES: Oh, (INAUDIBLE). So someone who commits an act like this is not crazy?
O’REILLY: Well, look, then every murderer would be crazy.
COLMES: Yes, I think you’re going to do something like this, you’ve got a crazy (INAUDIBLE).
O’REILLY: Okay, so you couldn’t convict any killer on anything. They’d always get off on insanity.
COLMES: No, I wouldn’t necessarily get you off on insanity. But the claim, if you’re going to do something like this, you got a screw loose.
So if by definition, anyone who kills is crazy, well, nobody is guilty I suppose.
Of course, there’s crazy and then there’s crazy. The New York Times firmly came down on a more damning indictment of the stress of military deployment driving Hasan to his act of ter—oops sorry, I mean acting out from profound stress. Now I don’t want to minimize the stress of a deployment, I’ve experienced it myself, but Major Hasan, unlike the troops he would have counseled, wasn’t going to be thrown in the midst of a firefight in Afghanistan. In all likelihood he would have been safely ensconced at Bagram AFB or one of the larger posts and in would probably never have heard a shot fired in anger (unless the war goes much more badly for us). And Major Hasan, with no wife and children, wasn’t affected by one of the most stressful parts of deployment: separation from a spouse and children. As far as military deployments go, Hasan’s would have been much more comfortable and danger free than the vast majority of troops he would have been sent there to support.
So everyone is carefully tiptoeing around the motives. The President, who was quick out of the gate in determining the motives of a police officer towards a Harvard professor, suddenly feels that we “cannot fully know” the motive.
But no, let’s not rush to judgment. The left would never do that would they? Not like with the Holocaust Museum shooter that the left immediately blamed on right wing talk radio, but who turned out to be a hater of neo-cons, Bush, and McCain, and of course, was a 9/11 truther. If he was listening to anything it sounds like it was Air America.
And of course the hanging of the census worker in Kentucky with the word “FED” scrawled on his body. With no suspect in sight, the left had no problem targeting again, the right wing, and Glenn Beck. Of course now, the case looks a little different, and police are thinking that this was not a murder at all.
The Army Chief of Staff, General George Casey, made clear that whatever the motive, the Army will continue to worship the gods of political correctness, “as horrific as this tragedy was, if our diversity becomes a casualty, I think that’s worse.”
Really? Diversity is more important than preventing massacres?
As for me, if someone described as a devout Muslim kills 13 and wounds 31 while shouting Allu Akbar, and thinks that non-Muslims should be set on fire, had contact with a radical, jihad promoting imam in Yemen, and had been described by colleagues, as expressing anti-American views, then I think there is a problem.
An Army that is so diverse that it allows enemies and people in direct opposition to the Army mission and the United States is a little too diverse in my opinion. Does the Army really need to be diverse enough to include Jihadi’s, guerrillas, and traitors to the United States? Whew, that’s one big tent!