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Jumping to Conclusions

This article first appeared on Dec 6, 2009.

According to President Obama, we should not . To hear the talking heads among the chorus in the mainstream media, we should “exercise caution” in our analysis and statements of recent events. We are offered any number of excuses, justifications, reasons, and explanations offering wild allegations of “discrimination and bigotry” upward to suppositions of Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome. Family members and many acquaintances “never expected” this behavior and, even declare him (-somehow-) as a “great American”.

Of course, we are talking about Major Nidal Malak Hasan, the 39 year old Army psychiatrist who, with an alleged shout of “Allahu Akbar”, opened fire on fellow soldiers and civilians at Fort Hood, TX, killing 13 and injuring over 30 more. Hasan, son of Palestinian parents, was born in Arlington, VA and investigations are finding a traceable history of statements and outspoken criticism of U.S. military action in Middle Eastern / Muslim countries.
All due respect, but with credit to Douglas C. Niedermeyer, these are the “facts humbly submitted”:

It was Hasan (who reportedly on numerous occasions voiced or published his own views about U.S. military missions and equating terrorists murdering civilians with soldiers who throw themselves on grenades to save comrades) that made his opinions (and, by that fact, his faith) an issue. By his very actions, he actually served to do MORE harm by fostering MORE distrust to the careers and roles of fellow Muslims who currently serve in the Armed Forces.

I am no psychiatrist, but I place little validity to claims that Hasan was experiencing “Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome” since (allegedly) his only experience with combat or combat zones was via the soldiers that he counseled. Equating someone “catching” PTSS like they catch the flu by being around those suffering from it would seem a dubious theory at best.

With all due respect to Hasan’s family, who are almost certainly as confused and shocked by his actions as are the rest of us, “great Americans” do not open fire upon their fellow soldiers and the civilians whom they are sworn to protect. That would be the actions of a murderer or even a terrorist. Please do not insult us or those whom he vicitimized by trying to “highlight the good part of him”.
That brings us to the comments of President Obama cajoling Americans to not “jump to conclusions”. Apparently, we are under cautionary guard to discuss major components of this story or make rational suppositions that will likely bear out.
Respectfully, Mr President, were this a 39 year old white male from Georgia who opened fire with angry shouts that “Jesus Is Lord”, would you have have urged caution in drawing conclusions? Had the call to action prior to the murders been “Stop Healthcare Reform Now” or “No More Bailouts – No More Deficits – No More Taxes”, would the media be so unwilling to make assumptions of the attackers motivation or background or intent? Would the shouting have included something like “Abortion is Murder” or “God’s Judgement Upon America – Sister To Sodom”, how slow would any of the typical liberal talking heads have been to discuss hate-filled, religious bigots?

Were any of those the case – the airwaves would be filled with commentary – after opinion – after analysis of wonks passing judgement on all Conservatives or Christians for the murderous actions of a terrorist. It would have taken less than a 24 hour news cycle for the event to be blamed on the “environment created by the tax protest movement” or FOX News or Rush Limbaugh / Sean Hannity / Conservative Talk Radio.

So, no, Mr President. We can draw some conclusions. Hasan is a murderer. He happens to be of the Islamic faith and seems to sympathize with the aspirations and goals our our enemies, the Jihadist terrorists. His actions may serve a poignant reminder of those ideas and philosophies of hate against which we are at war. It is against sociopaths like him that our military is fighting.

As evidenced by the premeditation of his actions (conversations with neighbors, giving away personal belongings, settling financial dealings like his apartment, etc), they are resolved to engage this fight. Frankly, Mr President, it is time for you to step up, stake a direction, and show some resolve as well. America may be waiting, but, as the actions of Hasan show, our enemies are not!