Letters to the Editor

Terrorist act

November 13, 2009


To the editor:

I am writing this on Veterans Day thinking of my Army friends at Fort Hood and the atrocity done recently by Major Hasan. There appears to be a debate whether or not to call this an act of terrorism. When I was a counterintelligence officer in Europe, our manual defined terrorism as “an act, often violent, designed to influence an audience bigger than the immediate victims.” Hasan’s planned attack certainly had an impact far beyond Fort Hood’s front gate.

According to several sources, this man contacted an al-Qaida recruiter almost two dozen times. Chris Matthews, on “Hardball,” questioned the legality of Hasan contacting al-Qaida, implying it is not unlawful. When I was in the Army, collaboration with the enemy was treated as an act of sedition and treason. Besides murder, Hasan should be tried for these, as well as labeled a terrorist.


Olympics 8 years, 7 months ago

Great Point Sap...you just forgot to expand the list.

It is hard to differentiate between the mentally ill and the followers of (Muhammad/Jesus/Joe Smith/Insert deity of your choice). There is a thin line there.

Shane Garrett 8 years, 7 months ago

Army psychiatrist Major Nidal Hasan will be charged with 13 counts of premeditated murder in last week's Fort Hood mass shootings, a military source told Fox News Thursday. And It should be 14 as there was an unborn child involved. Also Hasan violated Sharia Law and the principals of Islam. He became a confused Muslam following the suggestions of radical Imams who preach hate in order to maintain their own importance.

monkeyhawk 8 years, 7 months ago

NYC is about to roll out the red carpet for Gitmo "freedom fighters":

"Khalid Sheikh Mohammed to Be Sent to New York for Trial WASHINGTON -- Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, alleged mastermind of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, and four others accused in the attacks will be put on criminal trial in New York, Attorney General Eric Holder is expected to announce later Friday." http://online.wsj.com/article/SB125811122555346969.html?mod=WSJ_hpp_LEFTTopStories

jafs 8 years, 7 months ago

You know,

The first story I read about this stated that this man had been trying for years to get discharged from the army, and had offered to pay back the money they had spent on his medical training.

Why on earth didn't they just let him out? That probably would have prevented this tragedy.

Flap Doodle 8 years, 7 months ago

"WASHINGTON — The Army psychiatrist accused of killing 13 people last week at Fort Hood did not formally seek to leave the military as a conscientious objector or for any other reason, an Army official said, despite claims by one of his relatives that he had done so. It is unclear whether Maj. Nidal Hasan made informal efforts to leave through contacts with his immediate superiors, and if so how his chain of command at lower levels might have responded to such efforts. But any formal request by Hasan to separate early would have been submitted to the Department of the Army, according to the official, who saw Hasan's file before it was recently sealed by Army investigators. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the case publicly." http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/military/6715546.html

Shane Garrett 8 years, 7 months ago

Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ)


Any person subject to this chapter whom without justification or excuse, unlawfully kills a human being, when he--

(1) has a premeditated design to kill;

(2) intends to kill or inflict great bodily harm;

(3) is engaged in an act which is inherently dangerous to others and evinces a wanton disregard of human life; or

(4) is engaged in the perpetration or attempted perpetration of burglary, sodomy, rape, robbery, or aggravated arson;

is guilty of murder, and shall suffer such punishment as a court-martial may direct, except that if found guilty under clause (1) or (4), he shall suffer death or imprisonment for life as a court-martial may direct.

Treason is the harder charge to prove.

remember_username 8 years, 7 months ago

"“an act, often violent, designed to influence an audience bigger than the immediate victims.”

That's a really poor definition. "often violent" implies that "the act" might be "occasionally not violent". The definition given is to broad and to easily applied to actions carried out by the U.S. itself. Current, more clarified, definitions from US Code 2331 state a terrorist act "involve violent acts or acts dangerous to human life that are are a violation of the criminal laws of the United States..." Thus, eliminating any application to U.S. actions. It should be noted that unlike other legal definitions of terrorism (see U.S. National Counterterrorism Center) U.S. code does not stipulate the victims or the act must be non-combatants.

If it can be legally shown that Major Hasan intended this crime to "influence, intimidate, or coerce the government or civilian population" then conviction of domestic terrorism should be straight forward according to U.S. Code. Evidence (or conjecture) continues to mount that domestic terrorism is the case rather than a case of "workplace violence" triggered by a madman.

mom_of_three 8 years, 7 months ago

oh, tom, tom, tom, Tom. What are you reading? Liberals do not certainly consider Hasan the victim.
Hard from it. Not even sure where you get that assumption. BUt as I have more of a liberal thought, I am not sure what he is - terrorist, traitor, mentally ill, or all the above. There may be more answers and questions down the road.

mom_of_three 8 years, 7 months ago

Ag - I do get it, dear. Don't under estimate the brain power of an elderly undergradate history major.

mom_of_three 8 years, 7 months ago

"Oh Ag my valued LJW neighbor, how I long to be like you, endlessly pondering, doubting, denying ultimate knowledge or truth and dwelling in the world of unknowables."

Denying ultimate knowledge or truth - gee, tom, that's what you do. Pot calling the kettle black.

mr_right_wing 8 years, 7 months ago

I have studied Islam a bit... Muhammad's early writings were very peaceful; but his writings later in life did call for violence against infidels; so there is both in the Koran, some peace-loving, some vengeful and violent. In Islam, if the teachings of a prophet (in this case Muhammad) ever conflict, you use the later teachings. So in effect you could say that Muhammad's earlier teaching of peace is over-ridden by his later call to violence through a 'holy war'.

I'm not a KU scholar, that's just what I've learned in trying to understand the Muslim faith through reading and talking to believers.

jafs 8 years, 7 months ago

If you look at the Bible, you will find numerous examples of violence in the name of the Lord, as well as teachings of peace.

Everyone who is a believer in any tradition can generally find something to support violence.

For example, the "Christians" who kill doctors who perform abortions.

Christine Anderson 8 years, 7 months ago

I say treat this sicko Hasan as an individual-who also happens to be a terrorist! Dan Cary is right. It's not about vilifying all Muslims. We can, however, certainly vilify Hasan!

Scott Drummond 8 years, 7 months ago

dick cheney is certainly awful quiet.

Perhaps the failure of the bush/cheney adminstration to act upon Hasan's activities in 2007 and 2008 has finally resulted in undeniable proof of the value of listening to anything either has to say on the subject of "terrorism."

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 8 years, 7 months ago

"We can, however, certainly vilify Hasan!"

We certainly can, but only through due process.

Cooky_the_Cook 8 years, 7 months ago

Due process??? What the hell? The government can't take his life, liberty, or property without due process, but we citizens can say whatever we want about him. I am not required to give anyone due process before I vilify them. I say this man is a coward and a murderer and a bad doctor. There... I vilified him. What are you going to do about it, bozo? Due process me?

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