Confronting the Spin on the Fort Hood Massacre
It is sad and disturbing commentary on the state of American culture when the facts surrounding an event, such as the slaughter that took place at Fort Hood, can not only be manipulated to facilitate a political ideology but blatantly ignored in the pursuit of a political agenda. In the face of the most potent enemy the United States and the free world has ever know – aggressive and violent radical Islam – our leaders and members of the mainstream media are doing just that; manipulating the truth to facilitate an agenda, and we are all in danger because of it.
By now, everyone in the world knows the details surrounding the massacre at Fort Hood, Texas. US Army Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, in committing not only an act of terrorism but an act of treason, perpetrated the most deadly terrorist act on American soil since the attacks of September 11, 2001. Actions and statements made by Hasan prior to his murderous spree indicate beyond doubt that he was not only opposed to US military action in the Iraqi and Afghan theaters and that he felt it was appropriate for Muslims in those countries to kill US and NATO soldiers in response to “the infidel occupiers,” but that he made a purposeful and premeditated choice to execute his jihad. Yet, President Obama, his spokespeople and members of the mainstream media are hyping the “backlash against Muslims” sentiment while completely ignoring – and in some cases arguing against – the mountain of evidence that points to the fact that Hasan was a radical Islamist and a jihadist.
Four Qualifications for Terrorism
Alan Colmes erroneously cited a definition for the word “terrorism” as used by Webster’s Dictionary during a recent stint on The O’Reilly Factor. While Webster’s is a wonderful resource for everyday use in divining the meaning of words, where terrorism is concerned it falls short.
Terrorism is, effectively, a classification of a type of violent act. The National Counterterrorism Center uses the definition provided in Title 22 US Code § 2656f (d) (2):
“…the term ‘terrorism’ means premeditated, politically motivated violence perpetrated against noncombatant targets by subnational groups or clandestine agents;…”
The NCTC specifically states in its 2008 Report of Terrorism that this definition includes:
“…military personnel and assets outside war zones and war-like settings.”
In addition, and from a clinical perspective, terrorism is distinguished from other acts of violence, and from war, by always having these four characteristics:
▪ Terrorists violate the rules of modern warfare, as established in the Geneva Conventions and Hague Conventions; they can also be “sub-state groups” who can’t declare war legitimately.
▪ The goal of those who employ terrorism is almost always, without exception, to achieve political change.
▪ The targets of those who employ terrorism are symbolic of the political issue in question.
▪ That acts of terror are designed specifically to be sensational, to get attention from the public and especially the media
When examining the actions taken by Hasan, both on the day of the shootings and before, each of the criteria in the officially recognized definition for terrorism has been satisfied:
▪ It was premeditated: Hasan acquired non-government issued firearms to use for the attack and he began, days earlier, to give away all of his personal belongings.
▪ It was politically motivated: Hasan was acting in defense of his political beliefs – as well as his religious beliefs – where Muslims and Muslim nations were concerned as is evidenced in many of his statements provided in a medical lecture at Walter Reed Hospital.
▪ It was an act of violence against non-combatants: While the location of the attack was indeed a military base the victims were unarmed and Hasan knew they would be.
▪ It violated the Geneva and Hague Conventions: Hasan fired on unarmed people and non-military personnel.
▪ His targets were symbolic: Hasan targeted US military personnel at a military base that is one of the primary embarkation points for troop deployment, thus the symbolism of an attack against US military might and ability.
▪ His attacks were sensational.
With all of these facts – all obvious and overt – presented to the American people, law enforcement, our elected officials and the mainstream media, it is an act of dishonesty to pretend that the actions taken by Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan on November 5, 2009, were anything but an act of terrorism.
Hasan Is Obviously ‘Pro-Choice’
The argument over whether Hasan’s mental state played a significant part in his terrorist act against his colleagues and fellow soldiers has been championed by the mainstream media and some in the Obama Administration. Some are advancing the laughable theory that Hasan was suffering from “Post Traumatic Stress Disorder,” even though Hasan had never been deployed to any active theater. Further, Hasan was schooled as a psychiatrist who specialized in treating soldiers with serious personal injuries and PTSD.
It is more likely and, in fact, probable, in light of Hasan’s own words, that he made a purposeful choice to follow his Islamic faith in that way of a fundamentalist. His statement that he is “a Muslim before I am an American,” lends credence to this notion, as do several of his other statements:
“It’s getting harder and harder for Muslims in the service to morally justify being in a military that seems constantly engaged against fellow Muslims…”
“If Muslim groups can convince Muslims that they are fighting for God against injustices of the ‘infidels’; ie: enemies of Islam, then Muslims can become a potent adversary ie: suicide bombing, etc…” [sic]
“Fighting to establish an Islamic State to please God, even by force, is condoned by the Islam…”
“Muslim Soldiers should not serve in any capacity that renders them at risk to hurting/killing believers unjustly…”
And one slide in his visual presentation to colleagues at Walter Reed Hospital presented:
“We love death more then [sic] you love life!”
Disturbingly, and unreported in the mainstream media, Osama bin Laden is quoted as having said:
“We love death. The US loves life. That is the big difference between us.”
The chances of Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan not being of sound mind during the events of November 5, 2009, are distantly remote given the statements he made over the years. The shootings at Fort Hood weren’t a case of PTSD or a person who “just snapped,” they weren’t even the actions of a coward who was refusing to go to war. They were the actions of someone who made a clear and decided choice to champion his religion – fundamentally – over his nationality. Hasan chose to be a jihadist and to kill US military personnel in the name of Islam; in the name of Allah; ergo, his use of “Allahu Akbar,” the takbir.
Texas Counts the ‘Fetus’
Another of the fallacies being foisted on the American people is that Hasan’s shooting victims number thirteen (13).
One of Hasan’s victims, Francheska Velez, 21, who had just returned for her overseas deployment, was six months pregnant at the time of her murder. This is significant for more than the obvious reason.
In the State of Texas, if a pregnant woman is murdered and her child dies as well, the assailant is charged with both the murder of the Mother and the murder of the child. In 2007, a Texas state appeals court upheld a state law that protects pregnant mothers and their unborn children from acts of violence. It is because of this law that Hasan should be charged with fourteen (14) counts of premeditated murder, not thirteen (13).
So, why won’t the mainstream media and the Obama Administration use the correct number – fourteen (14) – when referring to the victims of this massacre? Because they would then have to admit that an unborn baby, pursuant to Texas law, is a human being worthy of the right to life as established “unalienable” by our US Constitution. Should either the mainstream media or the Obama Administration establish the precedent – nationally, due to the fact that this happened on federal land in the form of a US military base – that the unborn have a right to life, constitutionally, and the entire pro-choice movement is set back to zero.
By the authority of Texas law, the accurate number of murders that took place at the hand of Maj. Nidal Malik Hassan is fourteen (14). It is cowardly and pathetically ideological for the mainstream media, the President and his administration to ignore this truth, this fact, this moral accuracy.
Political Correctness Kills
So, why did this all have to happen? Why could all of the “red flags” exist without any definitive action having been taken by the FBI or the US Army? The truth of the matter is that none of this had to happen. Fourteen (14) people would still be alive today if it wasn’t for the ideological cancer that is political correctness.
Because of political correctness federal authorities failed to categorize Hasan as a potential threat to national security. Further, in another stunning bit of denial, the wheel chalks weren’t even under the tires of the government plane that brought FBI investigators to Fort Hood before they issued a statement saying “terrorism was not involved in this shooting.” The obvious question begging to be asked is this: Based on what? Before the FBI had even gathered the first shred of evidence it discounted terrorism. Why, because classifying a violent act perpetrated by a fundamentalist Muslim as “terrorism” isn’t politically correct.
And because of political correctness, the US Army refused to act on the concerns of several of Hasan’s colleagues that brought to light his penchant for radical Islam. Several of Hasan’s colleagues stated that he was vehement in his defense of Islam to the point of taking the side of jihadists engaged in combat against American soldiers. This information was provided to superior officers but because Islam has been erroneously declared the “religion of peace” it isn’t politically correct to accuse a fundamentalist Muslim of committing a terrorist act when he shoots people as he screams “Allahu Akbar.”
Islam is the only religion existing today with religious tenets that validate killing to advance the religion. All one has to do is to take the time to read the Quran and Hadith to understand that Islam is a religion of conquest that condones violence in its version of proselytization. In using violence – and sometimes deadly violence – against non-believers or “sinners” within the religion (which can range from a woman talking to an unrelated man to drawing a picture of Muhammad), how can anyone justify calling Islam the religion of peace? The only justification comes by way political correctness.
Political correctness has kept the federal government, law enforcement and the mainstream media from being honest about several terrorist plots against military installations right here in the United States.
▪ Jihadists targeted Fort Dix.
▪ A jihadist shot a military recruiter in Arkansas.
▪ Two jihadists targeted a US Navy base which docks nuclear submarines in South Carolina.
▪ And now Fort Hood.
In light of the Fort Hood massacre we can now say with absolute certainty that because of political correctness, fourteen (14) people are dead. Political correctness kills.
And In the End…
Perhaps we are naïve. Maybe the falsely elevated self-esteem fostered in a generation of me-first, gimme-mine, golly-I’m-great, narcissistic ideologues has left us unable to recognize true evil when it stares us in the eye; has left us unable to recognize an enemy attack – or a number of enemy attacks (whether plotted, attempted or completed) – even as it occurs. In light of the denial of the facts by our mainstream media, law enforcement and federal leadership the argument for naiveté can be successfully advanced.
Or maybe we have foolishly allowed disingenuous and dangerous people to establish a shadow set of cultural norms – antithetical to constitutionally legislated public law – in political correctness. And perhaps these people don’t really have the best interests of the country at heart. Maybe, just as Nidal Malik Hasan put his religion above his country, the politically correct have put their ideology above their country, above national security and above you and me.
No matter how you assemble the pieces, our nation has suffered the first terrorist attack since September 11, 2001, in the massacre at Fort Hood. It was perpetrated by a radical Islamist executing jihad and it happened on Pres. Obama’s watch. Fourteen (14) people are dead and no amount of politically correct spin can bring them back.
About Frank Salvato
Frank Salvato is the Executive Director and Director of Terrorism Research for BasicsProject.org a non-profit, non-partisan, 501(c)(3) research and education initiative. His writing has been recognized by the US House International Relations Committee and the Japan Center for Conflict Prevention. His organization, BasicsProject.org, partnered in producing the original national symposium series addressing the root causes of radical Islamist terrorism. He is a member of the International Analyst Network. He also serves as the managing editor for The New Media Journal. Mr. Salvato has appeared on The O’Reilly Factor on FOX News Channel, and is a regular guest on talk radio including on The Captain’s America Radio Show airing on AM1220 WSRQ and on the Internet catering to the US Armed Forces around the world and on The Roth Show with Dr. Laurie Roth syndicated nationally on the USA Radio Network. His opinion-editorials have been published by The American Enterprise Institute, The Washington Times & Human Events and are syndicated nationally. He is occasionally quoted in The Federalist. Mr. Salvato is available for public speaking engagements.