Conspiracy vultures descend on Fort Hood shootings

Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, the presumed gunman in the deadly Fort Hood shootings, worshipped at Dar al-Hijrah mosque in Great Falls, VA, led by a radical imam said to be a “spiritual adviser” to three of the apparent 9-11 hijackers—two of whom attended the mosque at the same time as Hasan, the UK’s Sunday Telegraph reported Nov. 7. The funeral of Hasan’s mother was held there in May of the same year, 2001. The preacher at the time was Anwar al-Awlaki, an American-born Yemeni scholar who was banned from addressing a meeting in London by video link this August because he is accused of supporting attacks on British troops and backing terrorist organizations.

Al-Awlaki moved from the west coast to become imam at Dar al-Hijrah in January 2001. Three months later presumed 9-11 hijackers Nawaf al-Hamzi and Hani Hanjour began attending his services. A third hijacker attended his services in California. (A Nov. 9 commentary on al-Awlaki’s blog heartwarmingly states, “Nidal Hassan Did the Right Thing.”)

The annoying conspiranoids at Citizens for Legitimate Government seize on this to editorialize on the “Manchurian Candidate-style” nature of the Fort Hood massacre. Pretty funny, eh? As we’ve noted before, this is kind of like a Rorschach test. The right wing will look at the same facts and see evidence of the inherent evil of Islam. (See this choice bit of salivation from the Camden County Conservative Examiner). Each are convinced that their interpretation is not only right, but the only obvious one.

CLG also links to a Nov. 7 Reuters report from Hasan’s grandfather asserting that “it is impossible that he would do something like that.” Under the headline “Curiouser and Curiouser”, CLG adds:

Major Hasan’s name appears on page 29 of The George Washington University Homeland Security Policy Institute’s ‘Thinking Anew—Security Priorities for the Next Administration’ —Proceedings Report of the HSPI Presidential Transition Task Force – April 2008 – January 2009.

We fail to see what’s so curious about it. Is it unlikely that an army psychologist would attend such an event? Is it the sort of affair where a “Manchurian Candidate” is likely to be programmed?

CLG also adds—without providing links, dates or headlines for the CNN citations:

* CNN: Over one hundred shots were fired in the attack. (Logic dictates that ‘over one hundred shots’ were not fired by a single individual, surrounded by military personnel and special police forces.)
* CNN: FBI was investigating Major Nidal Hasan six months ago.

We’ll be more convinced about the unlikelihood of one shooter getting off over 100 shots when we hear it from a forensic specialist. And we’ll be more convinced that the FBI investigated Hasan when we actually see the CNN story. (A Google News search does not turn it up.)

CLG is more than welcome to reply.

See our last posts on 9-11 conspiranoia and the struggle within Islam.

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  1. Fort Hood Rorschach test
    A case in point. The far-right WorldNetDaily also noted Maj. Hasan’s participation in the Presidential Transition Task Force (“Shooter advised Obama transition”)—but concludes not that this means he was a Manchurian Candidate, but that Obama is in league with radical Muslims. A tip of the hat to the liberal Washington Independent for pointing out that—contrary to the implication of both CLG and WorldNetDaily—the Task Force in question actually had no link whatsoever to either the Obama transition team or the Homeland Security department. It was merely another think tank issuing verbiage. The Homeland Security Policy Institute and its “Presidential Transition Task Force” have no more to do with the Obama team or Homeland Security by virtue of their ostentatious names than the wacky WorldNetDaily has to do with a legitimate newspaper by virtue of calling itself a “daily.”

    The HSPI has posted the following statement on its front page:

    In his capacity as Disaster & Preventive Psychiatry Fellow at the Uniformed Services University School of Medicine, Nidal Hasan registered (“RSVP’d”) to attend as an audience member a number of Homeland Security Policy Institute (HSPI) events in the period June 2008 to February 2009. All of these events were open to the public. At no time has Nidal Hasan been affiliated with HSPI or The George Washington University.

    CLG, in its teaser text for the blurb on the affair, breathlessly proclaims, “Video surfaces of alleged shooter, Major Nidal Hasan, attending Homeland Security Task Force conference.” WorldNetDaily also links to the MSNBC broadcast of C-SPAN footage that briefly shows Hasan’s face in the audience at the confab. But CLG can’t even be bothered to get the event’s name right. The non-existent “Homeland Security Task Force” is a sloppy conflation of the HSPI and its self-appointed “task force.” File under “much ado about nothing.”

  2. When Maj. Hasan aimed his…
    When Maj. Hasan aimed his weapon(s) doubtful if he cared who was on the Left or the Right.

    He told people that he was a Muslim first and an American second. He also told others that Islamic law should replaced the US Constitution. In Europe this kind of sentiment is heard a lot more – from people who believe in the supremacy of Islam over all else – some who are prepared to die for their beliefs.

    1. You provide no sources or links…
      …for your assertions. Anybody can just say stuff. How about some documentation?

      And we certainly hope that your grammar is better on your Islamophobic website than it is here.

  3. It seems Maj. Hasan did come to the FBI’s attention…
    From the Dallas Morning News, Nov. 9:

    Rep. Peter Hoekstra of Michigan, the ranking Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, said U.S. intelligence agencies intercepted between 10 and 20 e-mails from Hasan to al-Awlaki beginning in late 2008. He said al-Awlaki – living in Yemen since 2002 – responded to Hasan at least twice.

    The responses seemed “innocent,” Hoekstra told The Washington Post. But “for me, the number of times that this guy tried to reach out to the imam was significant.”

    Hoekstra wrote FBI Director Robert Mueller and high-ranking government officials over the weekend to complain that “serious issues exist with respect to the performance of U.S. intelligence agencies in connection with what appears to have been a terrorism-related attack at Fort Hood.”

    The FBI acknowledged late Monday that Hasan came to the attention of one of its Joint Terrorism Task Forces in December as it pursued an unrelated investigation.

    Agents who reviewed communications between Hasan and the unidentified subject of that investigation decided that they were “consistent with research being conducted by Maj. Hasan in his position as a psychiatrist” at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., an FBI statement said.

  4. What about major Hasan’s individual agency?
    The shooting happened just a day after the despicable House Resolution 867 in which 355 congresspersons voted to condemn report by justice Richard Goldstone which stated that Israel, too, committed war crimes in Gaza. Goldstone has a long and rich experience of fair and just treatment of issues where crimes against humanity were committed from South Africa, to Rwanda, Yugoslavia, and Argentina. Only Serbian fascists like Vojislav Seselj attacked Goldstone so fiercely as did the US Congress. Maybe this was the trigger for Major Hasan? Indeed, why would he condone such travesty of justice?
    Also, he posted on the blog (under his name, and that name is not that super-common in this country, so how can now media speculate about how could anyone know that this was him?) how suicide bombings are in certain aspects similar to the soldier sacrificing himself by jumping on the exploding grenade to protect lives of other fellow soldiers (in the case of the bomber, he sacrifices himself for the wider community). Maybe the shooting was a weird reality-tv psychological test? Which the US army-men miserably failed: they let him reload 3 times, fire 100+ bullets, kill 13 people, and NOBODY jumped on him and sacrificed himself for the benefit of others, until that female civilian cop entered the picture.
    He went to military in defiance of his parents. Then he became observant Muslim out of sense of guilt, when his parents die. Then he was heckled as a Muslim in the military after 9/11. And he did not want to go to war.
    Whatever the motive, he was one nutcase – and as a psychiatrist he was supposed to treat people with psychological problems caused by military deployment stress? While he could not cope with not being able to find a girlfriend that would wear hijab and pray 5 times a day? Even at the mosque they thought he was odd. How is that his supervising officers didn’t see this coming?

  5. Police killed in “ambush” outside US Air Force base
    From the London Times, Nov. 30:

    Four police officers were shot dead in a cold-blooded ambush at a coffee shop on the edge of a US Air Force base in America’s Pacific Northwest on Sunday.

    The four uniformed officers, one of them a woman, were gunned down while working on their laptop computers as they prepared for work around 8:30am local time. They were all wearing bullet-proof vests and their marked patrol cars were parked outside.

    The shooting took place at the Forza coffee shop, just across the street from the McChord Air Force Base outside Tacoma, Washington state, 35 miles south of Seattle…

    Around 200 officers from different agencies assisted in the search for the gunman, and road blocks were set up in the area as an intensive manhunt got underway. Officers took a police dog into a nearby apartment complex.

      1. Because its a quote
        I don’t think they are “scare quotes”—I just think they are making clear that that’s what the authorities are calling it.

        1. perception is reality in headlines
          They read as scare quotes. AFAICT the facts of the shooting are pretty straight forward.
          The quotes make it seem otherwise.

          1. The London Times engaging in conspiranoia?
            I don’t think so. As Freud said of bananas, sometimes a quote mark is just a quote mark.

            (BTW, I took the headline, quotes and all, directly from the London Times account.)