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Thursday, November 19, 2009

Mark Steyn has an excellent piece on the Fort Hood terrorist attack (for that is what it was). 

[W]e … are now reflexively conditioned to ignore the flashing neon sign. Like those apocryphal Victorian ladies discreetly draping the lasciviously curved legs of their pianos, if a glimpse of hard unpleasant reality peeps through we simply veil it in another layer of fluffy illusions.

Two joint terrorism task forces became aware almost a year ago that Major Hasan was in regular email contact with Anwar al-Awlaqi, the American-born but now Yemeni-based cleric who served as imam to three of the 9/11 hijackers and supports all-out holy war against the United States. But the expert analysts in the Pentagon determined that this lively correspondence was consistent with Major Hasan’s “research interests”, so there was no need to worry. That’s America: Technologically superior, money no object (not one but two “joint terrorism task forces” stumbled across him). Yet no action was taken.

On the other hand, who needs surveillance operations and intelligence budgets? Major Hasan was entirely upfront about who he was. He put it on his business card: “SOA.” As in “Soldier of Allah” – which seems a tad ungrateful to the American taxpayers who ponied up half a million bucks or thereabouts in elite medical school education to train him to be a Soldier of Uncle Sam. In a series of meetings during 2008, officials from both Walter Reed and the Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences considered the question of whether then Captain Hasan was psychotic. But, according to at least one bigwig at Walter Reed, members of the policy committee wondered “how would it look if we kick out one of the few Muslim residents”.  So he got promoted to Major and shipped to Fort Hood.

And 13 men and women and an unborn baby are dead.

Well, like they say, it’s easy to be wise after the event. I’m not so sure. These days, it’s easier to be even more stupid after the event. “Apparently he tried to contact al Qaeda,” mused MSNBC’s Chris Matthews. “That’s not a crime to call up al Qaeda, is it? Is it? I mean, where do you stop the guy?” Interesting question: Where do you draw the line?

The truth is we’re not prepared to draw a line even after he’s gone ahead and committed mass murder. “What happened at Fort Hood was a tragedy,” said General Casey, the US Army’s Chief of Staff, “but I believe it would be an even greater tragedy if our diversity becomes a casualty here.” A “greater tragedy” than 14 dead and dozens of wounded? Translating from the original brain-addled multicult-speak, the Army Chief of Staff is saying that the same fatuous prostration before marshmallow illusions that led to the “tragedy” must remain in place. If it leads to occasional mass murder, well, hopefully it can be held to what cynical British civil servants used to call, during the Northern Irish “Troubles”, “an acceptable level of violence”. Fourteen dead is evidently acceptable. A hundred and forty? Fourteen hundred? I guess we’ll find out.

“Diversity” is one of those words designed to absolve you of the need to think. Likewise, a belief in “multiculturalism” doesn’t require you to know anything at all about other cultures, just to feel generally warm and fluffy about them.

The brain-addled “diversity” of General Casey will get some of us killed, and keep all of us cowed. In the days since the killings, the news reports have seemed increasingly like a satirical novel the author’s not quite deft enough to pull off, with bizarre new Catch 22s multiplying like the windmills of your mind: If you’re openly in favor of pouring boiling oil down the throats of infidels, then the Pentagon will put down your emails to foreign jihadists as mere confirmation of your long established “research interests”. If you’re psychotic, the Army will make you a psychiatrist for fear of provoking you. If you gun down a bunch of people, within an hour the FBI will state clearly that we can all relax, there’s no terrorism angle, because, in our over-credentialized society, it doesn’t count unless you’re found to be carrying Permit #57982BQ3a from the relevant State Board of Jihadist Licensing.

Ezra Levant, my comrade in a long battle to restore freedom of speech to Canada, likes to say that the Danish cartoons crisis may one day be seen as a more critical event than 9/11. Not, obviously, in the comparative death tolls but in what each revealed about the state of western civilization. After 9/11, we fought back, hit hard, rolled up the Afghan camps; after the cartoons, we weaseled and equivocated and appeased and signaled that we were willing to trade core western values for a quiet life. Watching the decadence and denial on display this last week, I think in years to come Fort Hood will be seen in a similar light. What happened is not a “tragedy” but a national scandal, already fading from view.


Chris A said...

I haven't read Steyn's article yet, but I wanted to weigh in on this Fort Hood matter in general. Of course you, Darius, know I am very cynical about these sorts of things anyway and will likely have a different take that most others. This was evidenced by the fact that when my wife read me an article about this on the day that it happened, I said, "Hasan? Did you say his name is Hasan? They're going to say this is an Islamic terrorist attack and is possibly linked to al Qaeda." This stuff is so predictable, its laughable.

Now the fact that my suspicions were almost immediately confirmed doesn't mean that this wasn't a terrorist attack or that it didn't have anything to do with organized "terror". The question then would be which organized terrorist group. In fact, to answer the question as to whether this was a terrorist attack, I must say yes. But as you might assume, I have a drastically different point of view than most.

My opinion? This guy is probably a patsy. You really couldn't find a better model for Muslim terrorist than this guy. He's an Arab Muslim American embedded in the U.S. military. It doesn't get any better than that, my friend. He's the guy next door, he's your high school classmate, he's a dedicated soldier, but he's an Islamic extremist. And all this time you thought he was an American, but he was just waiting for the perfect moment to scream, "Allah Akbar!" and then start offing the infidels.

Sort of reminds me of Oswald. He leaves the Marines, becomes a Soviet basically, comes back to the U.S. where he takes part in a television debate in which he identifies himself as a Marxist. This is the guy you want to kill the president. He's oozing with Communism, he's a marksman, and he is a rogue ex-military anti-government, Russian-sympathizing kook. Hasan is perfect because he's an Arab Muslim first of all, then he has this history of anti-American sentiment so-called, and he is mental unstable and on very dangerous drugs. [Side note: nearly every mass shooting of this sort is linked to the use of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRI) drugs, A.K.A. anti-depressants.]

Oddly enough, none of this was sufficient cause to relieve him of his duties. Why? And you always have these people saying, "Someone should have read the warning signs", as if to say it was mere oversight. Come on! This is more than negligence. This is gross incompetence. Its not as if people didn't complain about it. Nothing was done.

And all this comes at the same time John Allen Muhammad (another crazy Muslim) is about to be executed for randomly shooting people after 9/11, and coincidentally (now this is pure coincidence mind you) he was pronounced dead at 9:11 PM.

There are a myriad of reasons why it doesn't make sense, but how about the fact that initial reports said there were up to three shooters, and then it later just becomes one guy? Sound familiar? How about Oklahoma City? Remember John Doe II? Of course not. He has been expunged from the record. He doesn't exist. Much like McVeigh, coincidentally another guy from the U.S. military who alone is supposedly responsible for bombing a multistory federal building from a single bomb in a Ryder truck, Hasan supposedly was able to fire 100 rounds single-handedly on a military base before anybody wounded him. Forget about those other two shooters. They were probably white guys anyway, presuming they were not the figment of somebody's imagination. In either case, you can bet they don't fit into the rest of the story.

Steve Martin said...

It's that demonic religion.

Islam is of the devil.

Sure there be some nice Muslim folks, but they are in a hateful, murderous religion that wants to subdue the world, at whatever cost to human life.

It's all right there in the Koran.

Chris A said...


Don't misunderstand. I don't disagree that Islam is demonic. And I agree that something as destructive as this was motivated by the devil without a doubt, but the question is: How is the devil involved? To chalk it all up to Islam is oversimplifying the situation. Surely you know that things are rarely so black and white. As with so many things, the devil is in the details.

In my previous post I said he was on SSRIs, but in actuality that hasn't been confirmed as of yet. I thought I had read that, but evidently I was wrong. When the media was allowed to tour his apartment they reported seeing "cache of prescription drugs", but as to which drugs these were, saving AIDS medication, is unclear.

However, if you will look into it for yourself, you'll notice that most of the mass shootings in the last 15 years, including Columbine, Red Lake, and Virginia Tech, involved people on SSRIs or antidepressants. And just because SSRIs were involved it doesn't follow that the devil was not involved.

Knowing that this guy was mentally unstable and that he had so many drugs in his apartment, it is likely that he was either on this stuff or withdrawing from it (which is equally bad or worse in some cases) - at least his behavior is consistent with that and he had every reason to be medicated, and would have had access to the drugs. I would be very surprised if he wasn't on Prozac or something.

But let's assume that he was not on drugs. Let's assume that he was just a crazy Muslim guy. Everybody knew he was talking some crazy stuff, and people even alerted the Army, but they didn't do anything about it! You had people saying, "Hey, this guy is dangerous".

So while it would not surprise me if extremist Muslim ideology was a driving force behind the massacre, is it not a more dangerous force with respect to insane persons? We have to consider everything and avoid spiritualizing the issue at the expense of all the evidence.

Couldn't we just as easily assume that the devil had some influence in the incompetence of people whose job it was to keep everyone safe? How about the way the story was spun? Could the devil have something to do with that too? You bet he could (and does in my opinion), but let's not say, without qualification, that the devil's sole tool here was Islamic theology and a willing vessel. The same thing could and has been said about "Christian" people who do demonic stuff like this.

Steve Martin said...


Yes, Christians do demonic things, also.

But our guide, our Bible does not call for us to do demonic things.

The Koran calls the faithful Muslim to kill in the name of Allah.

In fact, killing others in jihad is the only guarantee for a Muslim to get to heaven.

Chris A said...


I don't suppose either of us are experts on the Koran. Are there some troubling passages in it? Sure. Are there some troubling passages in the Bible? Most definitely. I'm not putting the two books on equal ground, but I am making the point that someone could just as easily pull out a passage from the Old Testament about God commanding genocide and then say that's the reason why a so-called Christian killed an abortionist.

Again, I personally agree that Islam is a demonic religion; there is no other rational conclusion for anyone who believes the testimony of Jesus Christ. But I think the same thing about many other religions, Judaism for instance. But that doesn't mean every time a Jew commits a heinous crime that I point to the Talmud. And the Talmud is more vehemently anti-Christ than the Koran, by the way.

But when you make the statement, "In fact, killing others in jihad is the only guarantee for a Muslim to get to heaven," I think you are creating a straw-man. Certainly there are some Muslims who believe this, just as there are some Christians who believe Peter was the first Pope, but to make a blanket statement like that presumes that all Muslims are jihadis or at least potential jihadis, when they are in fact, not.

I don't doubt that Islamic theology may have played a role in this shooting, but whether it did and to what extent, is not fully known and to presume we can figure it out on the basis of a stereotype is a bit of a stretch, don't you think?

Let's ask this question: Did Marxist ideology play a role in the assassination of JFK? Perhaps, but not in the ways people assume. There were a whole lot of other things involved. Was Oswald to blame? Sure, but it doesn't stop there. And after he told the news media he was a "patsy", he was done in shortly afterward. And to say that Marxist ideology or anti-American sentiment was the dominant motivating factor behind the assassination is simply indicative of a preference for a simplistic explanation amidst a myriad of very complex relationships and evidences.

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The Cross Centered Life: Keeping the Gospel The Main Thing
Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God
Overcoming Sin and Temptation
According to Plan: The Unfolding Revelation of God in the Bible
Disciplines of a Godly Man
Money, Greed, and God: Why Capitalism Is the Solution and Not the Problem
When Helping Hurts: Alleviating Poverty Without Hurting the Poor. . .and Ourselves
The Prodigal God: Recovering the Heart of the Christian Faith
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Life Laid Bare: The Survivors in Rwanda Speak
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Life at the Bottom: The Worldview That Makes the Underclass
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