Monday, November 9, 2009
FORT HOOD, THE AMERICAN MILITARY AND THE DO-GOODERS
Sick in the jihad
New York Post - 8th Nov 2009 3:25:38
The soldiers at Fort Hood had it coming, says a radical Muslim in Queens who travels to mosques around the city spreading anti-American hate and has sent a Get Well Soon message to the major behind the Texas massacre. An officer and a gentleman... more
Muslims fight to control Fort Hood attack fallout
MalaysiaNews.net - 6th Nov 2009 22:36:32
Hours after Major Nidal Malik Hasan was identified as the shooter in Thursday's attack at Fort Hood and with his motive still unknown, moderate and extremist Muslims began vying for control over the d... more
'Allahu Akbar!': The Wingnut Right Has the Jihad Nugget They've Been Hoping For [Fearmongering]
Gawker - 6th Nov 2009 8:04:19
The Associated Press is reporting that, according to Ft. Hood's commander, witnesses to yesterday's massacre say Maj. Nidal Hasan was shouting God is great in Arabic as he was firing on his fellow... more
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'Allahu Akbar!': The Wingnut Right Has the Jihad Nugget They've Been Hoping For
The Associated Press is reporting that, according to Ft. Hood's commander, witnesses to yesterday's massacre say Maj. Nidal Hasan was shouting "God is great" in Arabic as he was firing on his fellow soldiers.
FORT HOOD, Texas - Soldiers who witnessed the shooting rampage at Fort Hood that left 13 people dead reported that the gunman shouted "Allahu Akbar!" — an Arabic phrase for "God is great!" — before opening fire, the base commander said Friday.
Lt. Gen. Robert Cone said officials had not yet confirmed that the suspected shooter, Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, made the comment before the rampage Thursday.
And CNN has what it claims is security-camera footage of Hasan in a convenience store wearing Islamic garb on the day of the shooting:
If true, the above would seem to confirm what many on the wingnut right seemed to positively hope was the case last night—that Hasan's rampage was an act of Islamist terrorism, as opposed to the result of a breakdown or mental illness or the garden-variety insane rage and alienation that has inspired what seems like a mass killing every other month. We all know what first came to mind when Hasan's name was released yesterday. But we suppose a handy guide for finding the line that divides the Glenn Becks of the world from the rest of us is whether you reacted with dread at the idea that it may have been related, however murkily, to Islamism, or if you were filled with smug delight.
Here's some smug delight, from a horrible woman (via the Awl):
The moment I first heard about the mass murders at Fort Hood I knew in my bones that the shooter or shooters were Muslims.
Call me "Islamophobic," call me "psychic," call me what you will.
It now seems that there was only a single shooter: Major Malik Nidal Hasan, an American-born Muslim man of Palestinian/Jordanian descent, an American citizen who is an Army-trained physician-a psychiatrist to be exact-as well as a religious Muslim.
And here, from the Corner's Victor Davis Hanson, is a new meme watch: When a Christian or a Jew or any other kind of regular American blows a gasket and kills a bunch of people, there are a variety of reasons we can investigate as to the potential cause. When a Muslim does it, it's a personal jihad:
[I call it] al Qaedism, or the spontaneous rage of disaffected Muslims, who connect their own failures in some sense to generic radical Islamist sentiments, and act out that anger by running over the innocent (San Francisco or North Carolina), shooting Jews (the LAX or Seattle attacks), or shooting up malls or sniping. These are of course different from but in addition to the 24 organized plots that have been broken up since 9/11, four of them this year alone.
Maybe Hasan killed all those people because he thought Allah wanted him to. Maybe he did it because he wanted to exact revenge for perceived slights. Maybe he was a paranoid schizophrenic and thought they were lizard people. Maybe all of the above. We don't know. But if it was Islamism, this is the lesson that Hanson and his partisans want to take from it:
In other words, the narrative after 9/11 largely remains that Americans have given in to illegitimate "fear and mistrust" of Muslims in general. A saner approach would be to acknowledge that there is a small minority of Muslims who channel generic Islamist fantasies, so that we can assume that either formal terrorist plots or individual acts of murder will more or less occur here every three to six months.
A saner approach. No one, anywhere, has ever disputed that there is a small minority of Muslims—or any religious sect, for that matter—who subscribe to violent and extremist religious views. Make no mistake, this is an argument for legitimate fear and mistrust of "Muslims in general." Expect to see more like it.
And when Scott Roeder kills a doctor, it's not because of his "extremist Christian beliefs," it's because he's either extremely pro-life or because he's a "concerned citizen." Balls. #nidalmalikhasan
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I wish the network news dinks would really assert the fact the biggest enemy we face in the U.S. are loons inside of the U.S.
Anti-Obama folks hoarding guns and ammo and showing up at rallies with assault rifles? Now this?
Also, everything points to this guy being a known problem who was shuffled around by his supervisors. When he should have been kicked out of the military to begin with.
It's seems like only yesterday (actually, it was Monday) that Virginia Foxx R-NC was telling me that I had less to fear from Islamic terrorists than from the Democrats' healthcare bill. At this point in the week, is that still an acceptable statement? Perhaps she'd feel differently if Ft. Hood were in her district. Or if she had a soul.
I'm not sure why this has to be something that joins the long list of things liberals and conservatives fight over. It sucks when people kill for religion. It sucks when people kill because they can't get laid. It sucks when people kill because they get picked on at school. It sucks when people kill because they feel socially ostracized. It sucks when people kill so they can get their picture on the news. It sucks when people kill because their boss made them work overtime. It sucks when people kill because a TV host told them the government was going to take away their guns. It sucks when people kill because the IRS is unconstitutional blah blah fucking blah.
To me, I'm bored senseless by the "why" of the nihilistic disregard for human life displayed by all these fuckers, the absolute narcissism of thinking your "reasons" trump anyone else's right to continue living. Fuck no.
Muhammad told you to kill your fellow soldiers? Fuck him. Jesus wanted you to invade a country and take out a few hundred thousand civilians? Fuck him. Lord Krishna order you to torch that mosque and take back your temple? Fuck him and fuck your temple. Fuck your mosque, your church, your synagogue, your scripture, your holy places and your heritage. Fuck your cause.
@Mediahohoho: Yours is an entertaining rant, but devoid of any legit intellectual value. Empty calories, like gulping down a soda that feels satisfying in the moment but has zero nutritional value. You're bulldozing over the complex meaning and purpose of religious affiliation with a storm of F words. I'm not sure how this makes us smarter, not Fox News-dumber, but whatever. #nidalmalikhasan
@snugbug: "You're bulldozing over the complex meaning and purpose of religious affiliation with a storm of F words."
That's not at all what she's doing. If killing isn't a service your god asks of you then your god isn't an asshole!
But, arguably, it's not your god but you whose the asshole in that equation, right? So god's off the hook! Unless even the good gods are as much a projection of their believers as the bad ones--something that does go toward understanding the complexities of religious affiliation, but not one that the religiously affiliated would appreciate. Too bad. #nidalmalikhasan
@Mediahohoho: I don't think your rant is "devoid of any legit intellectual value". It is making a great point, of being tired of hearing about the Whys of murder, as if there is a philosophical/religious excuse for randomly killing strangers/coworkers/passersby/etc. No need for a sympathetic psychological/sociological history of major religions to make the point. Maybe part of the problem is that organized religion gets far too much sympathy. #nidalmalikhasan
@Bulkington: Very good. Exactly. God is never the problem; man/womankind is. We invented God and then proceeded to put words into his mouth. I realize this last statement doesn't make much logical sense--you need to read it as a koan of some sort. I specialize in koans, you see. #nidalmalikhasan
@Bulkington: What the fuck are you people even talking about? Who are you saying this to? It astounds me that what amounts to little more than a quasi-poem scrawled in the margins of a Psychopathic Records notebook could be called a "comment of the century." So you've demonstrated that you can be despondent about shit. Awesome. Let's pat ourselves on the back some more. We've done a great job here.
It's bullshit like this that makes embarrassed to be an atheist, sometimes. But then, there are short-sighted nitwits in every group that reflect badly on the whole, amirite?
Anyway, the serious point to make is, it's monumentally stupid to boil down something like this to simple religion. It's never that simple. The foulest thing about this whole mess is that no one will learn from it. Islamic nationalism / militarism has little to nothing to do with Islam, and everything to do with elements of regional cultures violently resisting western encroachment. The idea of a global network of religious extremist only kind of came into reality after 9/11, when the Bush Administration became the proverbial bull in the china shop of the Middle East. The seeds of it were sewn long before that, in Cold War politicking and CIA meddling, in the side effects of American economic imperialism. This is all international politics.
"Al Qaeda" didn't spring from whole cloth. They were a locally-focused group who, after failing as a popular movement (fancy that, a bunch of devout muslims not deciding democratically to submit to ultraconservatives!) decided they'd use violence against their regional states, and ultimately came to the (probably accurate) conclusion that they would never come to power with Western nations involved in local events.
But the point is, it's kind of ridiculous and typical of lazy atheists to think that a person just picks up a holy book and becomes a violent warrior of faith. Yes, there is history behind it. Yes, there is sociology behind it. There's got to be an explanation why there are some muslims who never murder anyone and some who have the desire to murder everyone. It's grotesque and dishonest to paint them with the same brush.
What if we find out that this particular murderer was not part of a terrorist cell, but acted on his own spontaneously? It would make more sense to assume that there was something about his job, something about the war that pushed him irrevocably to the edge. But that's too difficult to think about, isn't it? Best to just sever that Gordian Knot. What's the worst that can happen? Yeah, fuck this nebulously defined group of astounding breadth. Punk rock!
@Mediahohoho: Oh no, I didn't miss it. You're angered by religiously inspired violence. We (well, at least I) was just reacting to the fact that you seem to have condemned entire religions & their base on account of the actions of a handful of cuckoo fringe lunatics that identified themselves as followers. Fair? Also, I'm never satisfied. Never, ever. Gimme more! #nidalmalikhasan
@snugbug: No, it was more in the line of stating my opinion that neither religion nor any of the other aforementioned reasons ascribed to mass murderers matter, are cogent or need to be dwelt upon by as serious elements of thoughtful discourse. I thought it was obvious.
For the record, my problem with religions has everything to do with their hijackers, the fundamentalists, who use these dogmas for their own selfish, narcissistic purposes. I think most people in all religions couldn't really give a shit, go through the motions and are embarrassed by their co-religionists' misuse of their various dogmas.
And I reiterate my opinion that anyone who undertakes the murder of unsuspecting, unarmed people really doesn't have an excuse grounded in any wothwhile philosophical or metaphysical paradigm because it is, by definition, an act of insanity. To me, Charles Whitman, Tim McVeigh and this prick have nothing to say to me because they're all just nuts.
But again, I'm not here to harsh on anyone who gets off on feeling intellectually superior to me. It's the least I can do, right? #nidalmalikhasan
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So if the guy shooting up Orlando right now turns out to be a Christian, can that be used as a rallying cry to disenfranchise all Christian men from mainstream America? If only people realized how friggin similar all the three Abrahamic faiths are, this would really be a moot point by now. #nidalmalikhasan
@saralapua: Don't go tellin' Good Christian Americans that, they'll turn the shotgun on you for that kind of anti-Jesusing. Wait... #nidalmalikhasan
I recall here in Salt Lake the time after a young Bosnian man went on a shooting spree in a local mall, killing several people and injuring others. He was muslim, and it didn't take long before people were crying for his connections to radical Islam to be investigated. Turned out there was nothing at all to that idea, and fortunately local law enforcement made that very clear. That said, he was a white kid (which was in itself apparently mind-blowing for people around here - a muslim that looks exactly like your kid?? Impossible!). I'm sure if had not been a white kid from a European country people would not have been quite so willing to let that side of the story go, despite a total lack of evidence that that was a factor. #nidalmalikhasan
"Call me "Islamophobic," call me "psychic," call me what you will."
The first thing that comes to mind is "racist." Hope you're not offended. #nidalmalikhasan
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Here's the thing, and I am making no judgements on which side is right or wrong, I just think this is extremely interesting:
If someone killed a bunch of people, and said God told him too, and his name was Bubbah Lee Johnson, we would label him schizophrenic and give him medical treatment. Still prison, of course, but people would say he has an obvious mental disorder. Change Bubbah Lee Johnson to Muhammed Al Sherik, and people will immediately say, "those Muslims, they are dangerous, etc etc." If anyone suggested, oh that man is just suffering from schizophrenia, no one would accept that as an explanation. #nidalmalikhasan
@mrsdracomalfoy: Same thing happens with "honor killings." A few months ago some white British man murdered his wife after she updated her Facebook profile to say she was single. If that man had been Pakistani, the words "honor killing" would have been splayed across Page One of The Sun. #nidalmalikhasan
If I were a guy in the military who found out he was going to be shipped over to Afghanistan and I desperately didn't want to go, I think giving folks the impression that I had become a very religious Muslim (much in the way that Klinger decided to wear womens clothes- though I'm not equating crossdressing and the Muslim religion), might be a good approach to take. Perhaps it was all just a ruse that didn't work, and maybe this (and the fact that he is not wrapped too tight anyway) is what made him snap. #nidalmalikhasan
A Muslim saying Allahu Akbar is the rough equivalent of a Catholic crossing himself. And just like Catholics might cross themselves before, say, lining up for the snap in a football game, it doesn't mean that they are playing football because they think their religion requires them to. The far more likely explanation here is that Hasan snapped and went crazy and then called down God's blessing as he went about his task. I mean, the schitzophrenic dude on the street corner by where I work shouts out Bible verses as he walks in and out of traffic; does that mean he's walking in traffic because Christianity tells him to do so?
Until there's evidence of a motive, all the media speculation of a religious motive is irresponsible and bigoted. #nidalmalikhasan
@Wenceslaus: Well, the guy had apparently made a number of statements to the effect that Muslims in Afghanistan and Iraq were entitled to defend themselves against American aggressors, that he was happy when an American soldier was killed, etc., that sound odd coming from an American soldier. While there certainly may have been additional factors that caused him to snap, it seems likely that his religio-political beliefs played a role. #nidalmalikhasan
@topsy: Wow. Where did I say anything about a "legitimate fear" of Muslims being acceptable? I assume that's what you're implying when you put that phrase in quotes? #nidalmalikhasan
@Fuzzy Dunlop: My apologies. My comment was primarily directed to the original piece.
I responded to your comment because you made a connection between his religion and politics and this massacre. But 'apparently' isn't really proof that this man was anything more than a nutcase, Muslim or not. According to his cousin, he 'apparently' joined the military because he felt it was his duty as an American. So 'apparently' this guy was a patriot. #nidalmalikhasan
@Wenceslaus: Your explanation is great, but you really need to get it down to soundbite, and then get someone to say it on TV, before it will be of any use. Hey--doesn't Rush Limbaugh read this? #nidalmalikhasan
@topsy: I said "seems likely" because I acknowledge that, especially at this early date, it's impossible to know for sure what his motivations were. At the same time, in light of the evidence coming out regarding his behavior in the preceding months, it seems disingenuous to argue that his religious/political beliefs likely played no role. It's akin to the teabaggers who argue that whoever killed the census worker and carved the word "FED" carved into his chest might not have been motivated by anti-government sentiment.
It absolutely sucks that this happened, for obvious reasons but also because nutjobs on the right will use this to justify their anti-Islamic rhetoric. At the same time, we lose credibility if we argue that this asshole's political beliefs had nothing to do with his actions. #nidalmalikhasan
@Wenceslaus: There is a widely held perception that the West is fighting a kind of modern Crusade against Islam -- so it's quite reasonable to think some Arab-American Muslim who has made statements that he ascribes to this perception would crack and go gun-crazy. There's nothing "Islamophobic" about that.
The bigotry come in when people jump to conclusions about "Muslims in general."
That said, and I am speaking as someone who has spent years in the Middle East and has read the Qur'an, there are clearly passages in the Qur'an and Hadith that help along anyone who wants wage holy war, and there are a lot of guys (they tend to be guys) out there willing to use these passages to justify killing innocent people. And yes, most Muslims in the world know this is wrong, but some are conflicted when they see US supporting the pounding of non-combatants in Gaza and Lebanon. It also doesn't help quell the holy war bullshit when we send robotic drones into Waziristan to blow up wedding parties and fuck up the lives of a lot of really poor, stupid, uneducated, fundamentalist people in the region.
Every time we fuck up and kill some child in a drone attack in our war on terror, that child's body is on the front page of every newspaper in the region and the following Friday sermon in many mosques in the region couches the death of that child in terms of holy war. That's a potent form of propaganda we create through "collateral damage" -- avoidable or not. #nidalmalikhasan
that Hasan's rampage was an act of Islamist terrorism
Terrorism? The guy was attacking the military. How is that terrorism, which is almost exclusively defined as attack against civilian targets? #nidalmalikhasan
@Dave J.: Really? #nidalmalikhasan
@beercheck: Well, yes? Attacking the military is generally thought of as an act of war, not terrorism. Although there's a lot of gray area when you are a lone shooter and you attack them at a doctor's office, you might just call this guy an act of crazy? #nidalmalikhasan
@DannyOcean: I'd say that's at least a little closer. Particularly since the (intended) victims were unarmed and included civilian(s). #nidalmalikhasan
I realized that Santa wasn't real when I was 10 years old. Why is it so difficult for adults to realize that God isn't real, either?
@morninggloria: Pardon me, but that's a facile analogy followed by a glib statement. God/Allah is real because people believe in it. Their belief is what makes God real in a more urgent sense that it would be if it had a concrete physical presence. #nidalmalikhasan
@snugbug: It's not a false analogy. Both beings were invented to coerce people into being "good." #nidalmalikhasan
@snugbug: And furthermore, it's not "glib" to suggest that the violence carried out by people in the name of organized religion is horrible and senseless.
I feel like Matt Lauer. #nidalmalikhasan
@morninggloria: Santa is defined as a perceptible physical entity that can fly, travel around the world in one night, and do a lot of other physically impossible things. Kids of 5 or 6, with their basic 'folk' knowledge of physics, usually cannot believe in such a thing.
It is part of the definition of God (and dark matter) that it is undetectable and imperceptible.
It is not impossible for something imperceptible to exist, even as part of the world described by physics.
Therefore (although I lean more on the atheist side), there is nothing inherently stupid or wrongheaded about a belief that God does exist (mind-independently).
Sometimes I find myself immediately faulting religion without considering the fact that some people are just crazy and will figure out a way to carry out their crazy regardless of what they believe or do not believe. #nidalmalikhasan
@snugbug: Huh? Neither are real in a "real" actually existing sense. Which means they're made up like Santa or Peter Pan. The idea that people need to make up fairy tales and join a cult to explain their existence is a little irrational in itself. #nidalmalikhasan
@morninggloria: "Matt, I mean morninggloria, don't be glib!" (A tiny ray of sunshine in this otherwise deadly serious discussion..)
I'd argue that God was invented primarily to reconcile human beings to the mystery of their transitory nature. It was invented because us, humans, need to find a way to explain death to ourselves. The strong emphasis on coercive morality and such is a prominent tenet of Judeo-Christian-Muslim religions, but hardly as emphasized in Hinduism, Buddhism, and countless "pagan" or "native" systems of belief.
I do agree that organized religions often begets senseless violence. That doesn't negate the vital importance of spiritual/religious belief systems. ("Religion causes way too much fuckery to be justifiable.")
@morninggloria: Yes, I understand the anger. I'm pissed today too. Maybe because I expect military bases to be safe. It's how I felt when I heard that kids were murdered at daycare. Or those poor Jazzercising moms gunned down. It's genuinely fucked up and I wish I could stop it. #nidalmalikhasan
@Bristol Cities: See my comment below (or above, I guess).
@sumreent001: I don't want to get deeper into an bigger argument about God's existence or non-existence on an internet post about a man who took the lives of a bunch of people who didn't deserve it. I would like to point out the fact that there is no universally agreed upon definition of Santa, or God (or the Tooth Fairy, or Osiris, or Vishnu or the Easter Bunny). You can't say with authority that one or the other is or isn't a physical presence or a purely metaphysical being. Different people have different ideas of what each of these things are, even within populations of believers. #nidalmalikhasan
@Bristol Cities: More like Tinkerbell. You have to clap hard enough. #nidalmalikhasan
@morninggloria: The fact that we can or cannot establish the "physical presence" of any deities in a scientific sense is not the point. If you believe in something, and it motivates you to move and act in the world, if it inspires you to do both good and evil, that "something" is real to YOU. You're right, maybe this is not the time or the place to get into a complex philosophical discussion about the nature of God. I wish more of us were familiar with the writings of mythologists like Joseph Campbell, or historians of religion like Mircea Eliade. There is nothing irrational, stupid or lame about faith and belief. #nidalmalikhasan
@morninggloria: Obviously we have different feelings about the value/veracity of God's existence, but I need to point out that condemning faith as the cause of "fuckery" is sort of the same as condemning the Muslim faith as the cause of this particular episode of violence- and as this article expressed, that is an overly simplified, dangerous, and ultimately wrong point.
I offer that this sort of complete refusal to consider something at more than a shallow depth is more worthy of blame in a situation such as this- by all accounts this guy was, for lack of a better word, bullied by his colleagues after 9/11 because of his Muslim background, which he may or may not have even personally embraced as a practicing member of the faith, and his superiors either weren't able to help him or weren't willing to, and he felt trapped in the institution, and it would appear that he snapped. None of this absolves his actions, however I think the analogy that is more apt than any religiously based violence is to the Columbine shootings , and if we are looking at something to pin blame on we would be best to look at the propensity for people to be cruel to other people who don't fit into some perceived category of "acceptable". #nidalmalikhasan
@morninggloria: I absolutely agree. That's not a point I would have expected a nonphilosopher to make. You can only argue for or against God insofar as you are arguing for or against a specific conception of what the term 'God' refers to. You cannot argue against "every intended referent of the word 'God'" because the word might be used to refer to my sandwich. But I know people who do that! It's like supposing that everyone who talks about "dark matter" is referring to a massive compact halo object. Some are referring to weakly interacting massive particles.
(When I speak of God in most casual settings, I'm speaking of the Omnipotent, Omniscience, Omnibenelovent imperceptible thing that the Abrahamic religions posit. I don't think that thing exists on purely conceptual grounds.)
I think Spinoza's different, 'heretical' conception of God as part of the natural world is way more plausible. I'm digressing a hell of a lot! #nidalmalikhasan
maybe i'm behind and information has been revealed, but the NYT article this morning, said that there was no established religion on this guy's record. are people drawing conclusions without double-triple-quadruple-checking... the sources? #nidalmalikhasan
@kixiechic: They did triple-check their sources: his first name is Nidal, his second name is Malik, and his third name is Hasan. #nidalmalikhasan
NPR reported this morning that earlier in his career he had given an outrageous "Grand Rounds" presentation on the Koran, citing approvingly comments like "Infidels will be beheaded." It was so outre that other Muslims in the audience raised their hands to point out that not all of them believe the Koran literally; NPR also reported that it caused a great deal of discussion at the time and caused people to wonder if he was going to do something violent. #nidalmalikhasan
@Novaload: It would be interesting had he quoted the Quran. I can't find any version of the word 'behead' in it: [www.usc.edu] #nidalmalikhasan
@sumreent001: Oh, yeah, because we all know there's nothing violent in the Bible or the Koran, so I must be making that up. You might want to check with Saudi Arabia, because I believe they've got a couple of beheadings with crucifixions scheduled. Find out what they call it. #nidalmalikhasan
@Novaload: Did you even read my comment? I listed violent punishments in the Quran. Wait, maybe you are replying to the comment further up?
I never claimed that there was no violence in either book, and you have no grounds to say that I did. I expressed surprise, as a nontheist who was raised Muslim and knows about all the weird rules, including the one where your prayer is invalidated by audible or smelly farting (Hadith Bukhari), that the Quran mentioned beheadings. Is this some kind of Gawker custom/joke, attributing to commenters things that they didn't say? I don't get it. #nidalmalikhasan
@sumreent001: You don't get it. If you read the life and deeds of The "Prophet," he frequently engaged in it and condoned it. Surely he was not in error! #nidalmalikhasan
Now I just can't wait until the teabaggers begin to carry signs asking for a "real american" (AKA All white) military. This is so frustrating. #nidalmalikhasan
@meg9: Good luck with that. There would be, what, like six people left in the military? #nidalmalikhasan
I tend to agree that this guy appears to be a nut acting out of anger rather than zealotry, but I don't like getting the same lecture when Muslims in the US are caught plotting to kill people for actual religious reasons. This morning NPR had a long story about the "backlash" that is always brought up when Islam-insipired terror is unfurled--even though the horrid incidents cited are usually things like nasty but unfulfilled email threats against mosques. Their are times when I don't really care that CAIR is up in arms, considering how little it seems to be concerned about real plots that are uncovered and the shady movement of funds that goes on. #nidalmalikhasan
@quotidian: Shut them all down then. Fucking frauds, the lot of them. Magic-based living. #nidalmalikhasan
What is your evidence that CAIR "seems" little concerned when Islamist terrorism is discovered?
And what would you have CAIR do to prevent it? Why do you think this stuff happens? These nuts (those who are motivated by Islamism) are really good at keeping secrets.
At the mosque I attend, if you threaten violence, if you condone violence, if you so much as use abusive language related to any personal dispute, the Board notifies the police. What else would you have Joe Muslim do? He doesn't know who the terrorists are any more than you (I'm assuming you're not in law enforcement) could guess which disheveled white man will next shoot an abortion doctor. Is it the responsibility of Christian organizations to hunt down potential abortion clinic bombers? How would they do it? #nidalmalikhasan
@sumreent001: They wouldn't, and I don't expect them to. What I expect, if they are to be credible, is to hear them acknowledge there is a serious problem, specific to Islam, of Muslims plotting to kill innocent people and in many cases succeeding. Don't tell me about the peaceful Muslims; of course the great majority, but they are not the ones who worry me. Get rid of the shady characters in CAIR and shadowy money. Don't go all outraged and lawsuity when some imams act bizarrely on an airplane; rights on a secure airplane are not absolute. There is a reason some Democrats won't deal with CAIR. #nidalmalikhasan
@quotidian: Criticize CAIR on other grounds -- that is fair.
But I have no idea how you can claim that they haven't condemned Islamist terrorism over and over and over. [www.cair.com]
Are you asking CAIR to claim that Islamic theology condones the murder of civilians? They would be making a false claim if they did.
Are you asking CAIR to convince jihadist crazies that civilians really are civilians?
Are you asking CAIR to spend its funds on infiltrating Muslim communities and telling people to stop having jihadist beliefs? That is not the function of their organization. They are like the Anti-Defamation League -- not religious authorities. Would you have the ADL intervene to stop Orthodox Jewish men beating their wives because they believe it is religiously sanctioned? That is something local religious authorities work on. The imams and community leaders work tirelessly on rooting out anything that sounds like casual jihadist talk.
But, like many Americans, you don't want to hear that Muslims condemn and fight and acknowledge terrorism. I suppose if you could conclude that they do condone it, it might help you make sense of senseless violence. #nidalmalikhasan
@sumreent001: Fair enough. You make some valid points. I probably should be more narrow in what I criticize about CAIR. #nidalmalikhasan
Even if he did do it for the kinds of “Islamist” reasons outlined in the “NidalHasan” blog post quoted previously, until more is known, I think it is better to think that the violence was not necessarily ideologically motivated. Let us imagine it was “ideologically harmonized” (if you will allow me to coin a phrase). If it can be thought of as a chicken-egg question, then, I am saying, the ideology did not necessarily hatch the violence. It would be, rather, a question of an unstable and potentially violent person finding a proximal ideology.
@iplaudius: I was a little curt. Not to be disrespectful, but that would take some serious "imagining." Besides, the notion that most of the radical islamists were terrorists in waiting, but just needed the right religion to provide the moral argument to commit acts of mass murder is silly, and frankly, as dangerous as the right-wing nutjobs argument that this post addresses. #nidalmalikhasan
@resipsaloquacious: I understand that most terrorists, at least in what I have read, have basically studied to do what they do. Some are cultivated or even brainwashed; others seem to find it on their own. And I acknowledge that the prosecution of criminal justice cannot be concerned with the kinds of questions I am asking.
I am puzzled by what we know about Nidal Hasan so far. I find it curious that someone who went though the trouble of becoming a doctor (no small feat) could be persuaded to kill a bunch of people and, in the process, destroy his career and possibly his own life. The fact of his being an American-born doctor makes this case qualitatively different for me: he seems more comparable, say, to Timothy McVeigh than the 9/11 terrorists.
Of course, I could be entirely wrong. The whole thing could have been a terrorist plot from the beginning, medical school education and all. #nidalmalikhasan
@iplaudius: I'm trying to break down what you're saying because I always love your comments.
1. Hasan was a disturbed individual with latent violent tendencies from the get-go.
2. Somewhere along the way, he latched onto the discourse of batty fringe militant Muslim groups.
3. Afterward, Hasan chose to act on his violent impulses.
Wouldn't that imply that 2 and 3 are causally linked somehow? Or are you just saying that "ideological harmony" = crazy individuals find the motivation to enact their latent violent tendencies only when they discover an ideological platform that pours some kind of meaning into their otherwise senseless acts? #nidalmalikhasan
@iplaudius: Does anyone remember the guy who walked into the Unitarian church in Tennessee and opened fire? He was dialed into conservative talk radio, and had been influenced by what he heard on the radio to think that Liberals were dangerous and needed to be eradicated. It seems to me that iplaudius' argument has some merit. Would you say the Tennessee shooter was a perfectly stable human being, and that he made a rational decision to murder liberals - or is he unstable, latched onto right wing ideology and took Niel Boortz literaly when he spoke of liberals as cockroaches? Keep in mind that this Hasan guy isn't from the same stock that Al Qaeda recruits most of its suicide bombers from - he is educated and from a well-to-do family in Virginia. I don't think Islam as a religion espouses any more violence than Christianity or Judaism does - its the crackpots within the religion that turn it into something violent. #nidalmalikhasan
@snugbug: I am wondering why 2. leads to 3. in only some people. Perhaps this is a premise of my "ideologically harmonized violence": only a fraction of the people supposedly susceptible or sympathetic to the ideology are actually compelled or persuaded to commit acts of violence.
Why does ideology resonate into violence in some people but not others?
In the U.S., I would imagine that many young Muslims at some point in their lives come into contact with radical people, organizations, websites, books, etc. that would encourage them to commit acts of violence in the name of Islam. Many of these young people may be sympathetic to the ideology, in so far as they may detest American involvement in the Middle East and mourn the loss of Muslim lives. But, even if they are sympathetic to the ideology, most of them do not commit violence. Why did it work (evidently) with Nidal Hasan? #nidalmalikhasan
@i_cant_think_up_a_scrn_name: With a billion Muslims in the world and probably only tens of thousands involved in Islamically-motivated (according to their interpretation of Islam) acts of terrorism, I'd guess the rate of Islamically-motivated violence among Muslims is lower than the rate of Christianity-motivated (according to the perpretrators' interpretation of Christianity) violence during the Rwandan genocide, the Balkans war or the Holocaust, just to name a few examples. #nidalmalikhasan
I agree with you, there is only one ongoing muslim Manchurian Candidate terrorist plot, which thus far has worked perfectly (I kid).
My point is that whether a terrorist is ideologically motivated or harmonized, what is the difference? Both ideas support a belief that muslims are more prone to terrorism because of their religion. Not a belief I share.
Also, if what you read about many terrorists being taught or brainwashed is correct, then would not that contradict your argument that these terrorists already had the terrorist "in them", but merely needed the right belief system for "harmonization"?
@iplaudius: i think it has a lot to do with people who have strong needs for severe communal identities at the expense of other identities. in short, people who do tend to see others in monolithic typecast identities, and who search out others who likewise explain the world using that type of approach. and when you have those types of factions within a society, violence tends to be a result. or, if you live in a violent society (and the us is a pretty violent society- not just our high murder rate, but we have some of the highest assault rates, rape rates, and also just an angry fucking culture on top of it all) and you have people who subscribe to that type of identity based politics, i feel like it encourages larger and larger forms of violence. if there's one thing that is true about all of this, it is the fact that we live in society where people of all types and creeds regularly freak the fuck out and going on shooting rampages. yay for equality?
now this commentary is purely theoretical and is not in any way actually addressing the many layers of problems and, at this point, unexplained issues surrounding this particular act of violence. #nidalmalikhasan
Just wait for the Virgina Tech connections. Apparently, it was Hasan's alma mater. I'm sure some right wing lunatic will spin that story quite nicely to convince middle (stupid) America that VT is a breeding ground for mad men with loaded weapons!
That video puts a radical new spin on this story. Does anyone know what he bought at that gas station? #nidalmalikhasan
Sudden Jihad or "Inordinate Stress" at Ft. Hood?
by Daniel Pipes
November 9, 2009
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When a Muslim in the West for no apparent reason violently attacks non-Muslims, a predictable argument ensues about motives.
The establishment – law enforcement, politicians, the media, and the academy – stands on one side of this debate, insisting that some kind of oppression caused Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, 39, to kill 13 and wound 38 at Ft. Hood on Nov. 5. It disagrees on the specifics, however, presenting Hasan as the victim alternatively of "racism," "harassment he had received as a Muslim," a sense of not belonging," "pre-traumatic stress disorder," "mental problems," "emotional problems," "an inordinate amount of stress," or being deployed to Afghanistan as his "worst nightmare." Accordingly, a typical newspaper headline reads "Mindset of Rogue Major a Mystery.".
Instances of Muslim-on-unbeliever violence inspire the victim school to dig up new and imaginative excuses. Colorful examples (drawing on my article and weblog entry about denying Islamist terrorism) include:
* 1990: "A prescription drug for … depression" (to explain the assassination of Rabbi Meir Kahane)
* 1991: "A robbery gone wrong" (the murder of Makin Morcos in Sydney)
* 1994: "Road rage" (the killing of a random Jew on the Brooklyn Bridge)
* 1997: "Many, many enemies in his mind" (the shooting murder atop the Empire State Building)
* 2000: A traffic incident (the attack on a bus of Jewish schoolchildren near Paris)
* 2002: "A work dispute" (the double murder at LAX)
* 2002: A "stormy [family] relationship" (the Beltway snipers)
* 2003: An "attitude problem" (Hasan Karim Akbar's attack on fellow soldiers, killing two)
* 2003: Mental illness (the mutilation murder of Sebastian Sellam)
* 2004: "Loneliness and depression" (an explosion in Brescia, Italy outside a McDonald's restaurant)
* 2005: "A disagreement between the suspect and another staff member" (a rampage at a retirement center in Virginia)
* 2006: "An animus toward women" (a murderous rampage at the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle)
* 2006: "His recent, arranged marriage may have made him stressed" (killing with an SUV in northern California)
Additionally, when a Osama bin Laden-admiring Arab-American crashed a plane into a Tampa high-rise, blame fell on the acne drug Accutane.
As a charter member of the jihad school of interpretation, I reject these explanations as weak, obfuscatory, and apologetic. The jihadi school, still in the minority, perceives Hasan's attack as one of many Muslim efforts to vanquish infidels and impose Islamic law. We recall a prior episode of sudden jihad syndrome in the U.S. military, as well as the numerous cases of non-lethal Pentagon jihadi plots and the history of Muslim violence on American soil.
Far from being mystified by Hasan, we see overwhelming evidence of his jihadi intentions. He handed out Korans to neighbors just before going on his rampage and yelled "Allahu Akbar," the jihadi's cry, as he fired off over 100 rounds from two pistols. His superiors reportedly put him on probation for inappropriately proselytizing about Islam.
We note what former associates say about him: one, Val Finnell, quotes Hasan saying, "I'm a Muslim first and an American second" and recalls Hasan justifying suicide terrorism; another, Col Terry Lee, recalls that Hasan "claimed Muslims had the right to rise up and attack Americans"; the third, a psychiatrist who worked very closely with Hasan, described him as "almost belligerent about being Muslim."
Finally, the jihad school of thought attributes importance to the Islamic authorities' urging American Muslim soldiers to refuse to fight their co-religionists, thereby providing a basis for sudden jihad. In 2001, for example, responding to the U.S. attack on the Taliban, the mufti of Egypt, Ali Gum'a, issued a fatwa stating that "The Muslim soldier in the American army must refrain [from participating] in this war." Hasan himself, echoing that message, advised a young Muslim disciple, Duane Reasoner Jr., not to join the U.S. army because "Muslims shouldn't kill Muslims."
If the jihad explanation is overwhelmingly more persuasive than the victim one, it's also far more awkward to articulate. Everyone finds blaming road rage, Accutane, or an arranged marriage easier than discussing Islamic doctrines. And so, a prediction: what Ralph Peters calls the army's "unforgivable political correctness" will officially ascribe Hasan's assault to his victimization and will leave jihad unmentioned.
And thus will the army blind itself and not prepare for its next jihadi attack.
Mr. Pipes is director of the Middle East Forum and Taube distinguished visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution of Stanford University./////////////////////////////////////////////////////////
All the Warning Signs Were There
Posted: 08 Nov 2009 07:27 PM PST BY SULTAN
He is inside your borders. He works deep inside your political and social structures. Openly he expresses his support for your murderers and enthusiastically promotes his message of hate. The bumper sticker on his car reads, "Allah is Love", but that love is the "love" which the Koran 61:4 describes as follows, "Surely Allah loves those who fight in His way in ranks as if they were a firm and compact wall.
And when on one fateful morning he gives away his possessions, as was expected of Mohammed's followers, "The ones who belong to Allah are those who give away, wholeheartedly everything they possess thus proving true their claim of love. Abu Bakr (Mohammed's successor) held this rank, which, on one occasion had brought every content of his house before (Mohammed) the Messenger of Allah"...
... and that evening carries out his planned massacre, following the words of the Hadith, "The Messenger (Mohammed) said: "Leaving for Jihad in the Way of Allah in the morning or in the evening will merit a reward better than the world and all that is in it" (Sahih Muslim 3492) ... all the warning signs were there.
But the warning signs were not there just for Nidal Malik Hassan, an Islamic radical from a family that had immigrated from one of the world's ugliest sources of Islamic radicalism, who had attended radical mosques and fraternized with radicals Imams. Hassan is only one blip of red in an ugly impressionist painting scrawled across the globe in shades of crimson and black. Each Muslim who follows the way of Jihad or feels compelled to support those who do, is a single point of red in that red and black atlas. Each one of their victims, murdered, raped, honor killed, tortured, beheaded and crippled are the black dots. And both the black and red dots are growing in number to cover the world.
Nidal Hassan is only one blip in the great ugly splotch of red and black scrawled across the United States, from east to west, to the north and the south. And that splotch is only one of many marring the globe and spreading across it.
The goal of the Islamists, of many of those very same Imams who ministered to Hassan's religious questions, and the larger Saudi funded Wahhabi organizations that fund and train them, is not to create a single Nidal Malik Hassan eager to die for the Jihad, but to create tens of thousands of Hassans and thousands of Fort Hoods in the United States alone. While they smile and lie through their teeth to the media, they are already working on spinning the incident to their advantage, to play the old game so common in Europe and America of positioning themselves as the alternatives to those "other" crazy Muslims like Hassan who might be tempted to take weapons in hand, if their recommendations about increasing tolerance are not followed. And the first recommendation of course is to avoid radicalizing Muslims by not attributing the attack to his Islamic beliefs.
How they must chuckle as they urge law enforcement to suppress the truth about Islamic violence in order to avoid marginalizing and further radicalizing Muslims... even as they themselves promote radicalism, host pro-terrorist speakers and preach the Koran's message of Jihad, death to the unbeliever and a Sharia ruled Caliphate across the earth. How they must laugh as the very law enforcement agencies that are meant to uncover and prevent crimes, instead cover up for their crimes. And they go on taking their invites to the White House, running their Islamic academies and putting out their ideology, one strain for the general American public, and another for their own boys, and beneath it of it one great engine of death humming along as it helps turn out the next Nidal Hassan, the next Hassan Akbar, the next James Cromite, the next John Walker Lindh or Adam Gadahn ... the next eager American practitioner of Mohammed's way of death.
All the warning signs were there. Not simply for Nidal Malik Hassan, reading and hearing the same call to death over and over again for years, until he reached a decision that is considered praiseworthy within the context of the Koran... but for Islam in general.
All the warning signs are there. They are in the Koran and in books sold in every Muslim bookstore in America and Europe. They are on tapes and on YouTube. They are in the bodies of their victims and the Muslim killers. They are there in the long flowing black Abayas and beards that mark radicalized Muslims, but they are just as there behind the false smiles of Western born and educated killers like Nidal Malik Hassan who drive around with bumper stickers reading, "Allah is Love", only for his targets to realize too late that in Islam, love is indivisible from death, and that the worship of Allah is most praiseworthy when it is carried out through Jihad, the murder of infidels.
The bloody common denominator of all these things is Islam. And while our brave and brilliant politicians insist that we are not at war with Islam, shunning and even imprisoning those who say otherwise, Islam is at war with us and has been since its inception nearly a millennium and a half ago. And will continue to be until we either once again force it back and break its momentum, or until it destroys us all.
Like a hive of angry bees, the Jihadists circle us waiting for a chance to sting. And like bees, they die or become useless once they have stung us. Nidal Hassan is not likely to sting anyone again. His work is done, but there are countless other buzzing angry killers, emerging from the hive and quietly waiting their turn. The warning signs are all there, but political correctness has determined that the whole thing is a misunderstanding caused by us, and our political leaders have decided that the best way to avoid being stung is to insist that there are no bees there, or if there are only a handful of particularly radicalized bees. Occasionally we venture forth to swat a few bees, but each time we ignore the hive. And it is out of the hive, that death comes. The bees are nothing in and of themselves, the hive is everything.
Looking back from some future vantage point, or even from the present, all the warning signs were there. Our enemies are not subtle, only their propaganda is and even that relies in the main part on our willingness to fool ourselves, on our cultural, political and media institutions to blare forth lies that on the face of them should be naturally met with laughter or a punch in the face. They kill us, they run away and cry that they are the victims-- and it is our own press and politicians who take up the cry, who go to minister to the murderers and not the murdered, to the butchers and not the butchered, to our enemies and not to our brothers and sisters.
After every serial killer does his bloody deeds and they are finally uncovered, the neighbors gather around and repeat the same mantras, "He seemed so ordinary", "He was nice but kept to himself" and that all time favorite of people dwelling in neatly painted houses next to corpse pits, "How could we know?" All these mantras are of course a lie. They are excuses made by people who knew on some level, who noticed things that made them uncomfortable before they put those thoughts away, locked them up and decided their day would be better without thinking too much about such things, or going out on a limb that might endanger them, or worst of all... and this is the great terror of modern civilized man, make them appear crazy themselves.
The warning signs were there. The warning signs are still there. Not just for Nidal Hassan, but for Islam itself. We have seen the bodies and we have buried some of them ourselves, family, friends and fellow countrymen. We have heard the screams. We know what has been. It does not take a prophet to know what is to come.
All the warning signs are there. The question is what are we going to do about them?
Paragraphs 5 and 6 are very important.
FT. HOOD ATTACK WAS TERRORISM
By DICK MORRIS & EILEEN MCGANN
Published on DickMorris.com on November 8, 2009
In his nationally televised remarks following the horrendous killings at Ft. Hood, President Obama never mentioned the T word. The attack was an act "of violence." No mention of terrorism.
In fact, the Ft. Hood shooting is the first terror attack on American soil since 9-11. But Obama, reluctant to take the rap for inadequate protections against such attacks, is doing everything he can to make it look like an adult version of the Columbine school shootings. We are treated to stories about the killer's dread of being sent back to Afghanistan and his deformed personality.
But, the fact is that Major Nidal Malik Hasan jumped on a table, yelled "Alah Hu Akhbar" and began the shooting rampage that killed 13 people and wounded 30 more.
Ilana Freedman, CEO and Senior Analyst for the Gerard Group International, which provides intelligence analysis for business and homeland security, describes Hasan as a "lone wolf terrorist" who acts without apparent coordination with any other person or organization. But that does not make him any less of a terrorist.
The dividing line, of course, between a terrorist and a psychopathic killer is political motivation. His statements right before opening fire would indicate that Hasan was motivated by fanaticism and a commitment to Islamic fascism, even though President Obama bends over backwards to avoid saying so.
Obama's refusal to call the attack terrorism, and to heed the warning signs about the porous nature of our security system that allowed it to happen on a military base, recalls President Clinton's deliberate decision to downplay the 1993 attack on the World Trade Center. He did not visit the site of the attack and treated it as a crime, promising to find those guilty and punish them, rather than to attack the international groups that funded and enabled them.
There may be no groups behind Major Hasan's attack, but the fact that he was an officer in the Army, with full access to a military base and its arsenal of weapons, while holding the views he did, is the first indication of a laxity in security under President Obama. This attack did not take place in a shopping mall or a school, where security procedures are, understandably, relaxed. It happened on the highest security place of all - a military base! That the military failed to spot the possibility of an attack and had no measures in place to prevent it must be laid at the feet of the commander-in-chief of that military: President Barack Obama.
Many commentators have warned that the diminution of security and the weakening of our anti-terrorist protections would leave us vulnerable to be hit again. Now it has happened. And the president is doing everything he can to blur the distinction between murder and terrorism.
It was his failure to understand the difference between an act of war and a crime that undermined President Clinton's administration's anti-terror efforts and led directly to 9-11. It would appear that President Obama is going down the same road of denial and minimization of political harm. There may be casualties at Ft. Hood, but Obama is determined that his popularity will not be among them.
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PC sickness killed our soldiers
Posted: November 07, 2009
By Joseph Farah
America is still mourning the murders of 13 soldiers at Fort Hood in what can only be characterized as a vicious slaughter by a jihadist terrorist, an attack incubated and nurtured by an irrational pandemic of political correctness.
I know no one else is putting it quite like this.
I know I will be flamed for introducing politics into this terrible tragedy.
But sick and twisted politics is what led to this massacre, and somebody has to say it.
How many times do we need to see man-made disasters like this occur before we recognize we are at war? This is not some game. This is not an enemy that will go away if we turn our backs and pretend it really doesn't exist. This is war – all-out war against Americans and America.
The questions are legion:
* How did Nidal Malik Hasan rise to the rank of major in the U.S. Army with his background? I'm not talking about his Muslim faith. I'm talking about his troubled history – the disciplinary record of inappropriate proselytizing, the extremist Internet postings, the statements to comrades about American foreign policy, the mandatory counseling he had to receive because of his behavior. How could he ever have been placed in such a position of authority?
* How is it possible that an officer who had expressed such grave misgivings about a deployment to Afghanistan or Iraq have been assigned to such a mission without careful scrutiny?
* What kind of screening goes on in the military for security safety risks?
* Why was this man chosen to participate in transition plans for the new administration less than a year ago by a major university – particularly on an issue involving homeland security?
* Why are soldiers on U.S. military bases strictly forbidden to carry firearms – weapons that could have prevented this travesty? If they are to be trusted with firearms to carry out their foreign missions, why not at home to defend themselves like other Americans? Why have military bases, of all places, been turned into virtual gun-free zones?
* And how is it possible after so many incidents like this in America are the U.S. media still so obsessed with withholding information and denying terrorism as even a possible motivation?
These are actually dangerous questions to pose in our country today. I will most assuredly be attacked for even asking them. Yet, like them or not, most Americans are clear-thinking enough to know exactly what I am talking about.
I write these words as an Arab-American. I bear no hostility toward people from the Middle East. I bear no hostility toward people who are Muslim. However, I do bear hostility – and, I believe, rightly so – to people who want to destroy America or radically alter its form of governance.
Have we lost our senses?
Do we not recognize threats when they are staring us straight in the face?
I pray that the deaths and suffering of the victims at Fort Hood are not in vain. I pray that our nation learns some critical lessons from this tragedy. I pray that we will once again begin using our heads when it comes to matters so grave as our national security and the personal safety of people willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for their country.
Let's get our heads out of the sand.
Let's start confronting our cunning and wily enemy with discernment.
Let's begin using common sense instead of irrational political correctness to make our national policies.
Let's look around soberly at the threats all around us with mission-oriented clear-headedness.
Let's stop playing pretend.