“On November 5, 2009, [Major Nidal] Hasan entered the Fort Hood deployment center. He carried two pistols. He jumped on a desk and shouted ‘Allahu Akbar!’ – Arabic for ‘God is great!’ Then he opened fire, killing twelve U.S. soldiers and one DoD employee, and injuring forty-two others.”
That narrative is from the recently released William Webster report on the Fort Hood massacre. The Federal Bureau of Investigation was tracking Hasan but failed to prevent his murderous rampage. The report gives some clues for that failure, such as the diagnosis of the problem:
“The Fort Hood shootings are a grim reminder that violent radicalization is a persistent threat to the United States and its citizens and residents. Radicalization – whether based on religious, political, social, or other causes – challenges the capability and capacity of the FBI and other members of the U.S. Intelligence Community to identify, collect, analyze, and act on accurate intelligence in time to detect and deter those who would commit violence.”
So the problem is not anti-American hatred, jihad, terrorism or political murder. The problem is “violent radicalization.” The report adds:
“Although highly publicized terrorist plots and acts – and the Fort Hood shootings – have referenced Islam, violent radicalization transcends any one religion – and, indeed, religion – and can find causes in political, social, environmental, and other contexts. The FBI’s report on terrorist acts in the U.S. between 1980 and 2005 identified 318 events (including bombings, arson and malicious destruction, and shootings); only 7% of those events were attributed to Islamic extremists.”
That declaration deserves a spot-weld. An official report on a mass murder by an Islamic extremist, who praised Allah as he killed American troops, goes out of its way to downplay the role of militant Islam in violence. The report is freighted with bureaucratic filler and blacked out in parts, but it does provide emails that Major Hasan sent to Anwar al-Awliki, a noted jihadist killed last year in a drone strike. In these emails, here quoted as he wrote them, Hasan comes across as eager to kill Americans but in need of religious justification for such action.
“There are many soldiers in the us armed forces that have converted to Islam while in the service,” Hasan wrote.
“There are also many Muslims who join the armed forces for a myriad of different reasons. Some appear to have internal conflicts and have even killed or tried to kill other us soldiers in the name of Islam i.e. Hasan Akbar, etc. Others feel that there is no conflict. Previous Fatwas seem vague and not very definitive. Can you make some general comments about Muslims in the u.s. military. Would you consider someone like Hasan Akbar or other soldiers that have committed such acts with the goal of helping Muslims/Islam (Lets just assume this for now) fighting Jihad and if they did die would you consider them shaheeds. I realize that these are difficult questions but you seem to be one of the only ones that has lived in the u.s. has a good understanding of the the Qur’an and Sunna and is not afraid of being direct.”
In another email, Hasan said:
“If the Qur’an it states to fight your enemies as they fight you but don’t transgress. So, I would assume that suicide bomber whose aim is to kill enemy soldiers or their helpers but also kill innocents in the process is acceptable. Furthermore, if enemy soldiers are using other tactics that are unethical/unconscionable than those same tactics may be used.”
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