I'm writing this article as a matter of personal opinion, for no other reason than because I'm taking this extremely personally. This should not be taken as a disclaimer, nor should it be read as a means of distancing that personal opinion from any editorial opinion I hold as the executive director of this website.
This editorial piece will fully and without any attempts at spinning it otherwise, be one of the rare occasions where I allow myself to turn Bullshido into my personal soapbox, speaking on behalf of me and not the site. Call it "executive privilege" if you will, I don't care. For the next, however long it takes me to write this, if it could ever be said that in a professional capacity I did; I currently do not care if this offends you, your ideology, your sensibilities, your delicate constitution, or your expectations as to what content should appear in this section on this website.
Now that that's out of the way...
As of about 12 seconds ago, my status on Facebook read thusly:
Words cannot express how angry I am right now. It's a tangible anger, I can taste it, no, I can chew it and spit it back out as burning napalm. Yet there's nothing I can do but sit here and be angry. **** you Malik Nadal Hassan; if there's a hell I'll be making a fucking beeline for you the minute I hit the ground.The truth is that I really can't do much but sit here, sit here and rage from behind a keyboard with my face pursed and an inclination to smash something. If you're reading this from the central Texas area, I implore you to go find a local blood bank and donate. If you have a loved one stationed on Fort Hood, my thoughts are with you. And if you've lost someone in this act of Terrorism, my deepest and most sincere condolences go out to you.
At 1:30 PM today as current information provides, a terrorist coward named Malik Nadal Hassan betrayed his profession, his creed, and his country, murdering 11 American soldiers, one police officer, and wounding 31 others.
You see, Hassan was a psychiatrist, responsible for the counseling of soldiers returning from deployments. I wasn't aware of this when the reports first started coming in. When I found out that it was a US Army Major, a fairly high-ranking officer (usually takes around 10 years of exemplary duty to attain that rank), I literally blinked a few times.
Of course it's shocking to have a mental health professional, essentially, "go mental". And with information still coming in, it's dubious that this might be the case. Reports are that this shitbag was unhappy about being ordered to deploy back to Iraq. Other reports mention that he's a recent convert to Islam. Both pieces of relevant information.
An officer has a duty to take care of his soldiers. This individual's duty went beyond this basic mandate, given that it was his specific duty as a counselor. Weary soldiers returning from deployment opened up their heads and hearts to this man. His role was to help heal the emotional wounds servicemen and women picked up over the course of grueling deployments to inhospitable countries where they faced death on a daily basis.
He was supposed to offer comfort to those who had volunteered to forsake it.
There are some officers who achieve rank partially on the basis of their professional abilities in certain high-demand fields. Mister (I refuse to call him Major) Hasan was most likely one of these individuals. Otherwise, it would be very difficult to imagine this happening had he come up through the ranks as an officer who paid his dues and busted his tail to make the rank of Major.
I have no doubts that many of the talking heads and elected officials will present this in the context of a disturbed individual, regardless of how calculated and pre-meditated it turns out to be. Let there be no confusion, this was an act of terrorism.
I'd also like to think that this was unrelated to the detail that Hasan had recently converted to Islam. But on the other hand, I'll hope that we do eventually get the full story instead of being treated like stupid children by our Government elders in the name of preserving social harmony. We're big boys and girls, and we've been able to carry on with our lives just fine knowing that a significant portion of terrorists happen to be Muslim without assuming every Muslim in the country is a possible terrorist.
If this conversion does turn out to be relevant, regardless of the treatment it gets in the media, I hope our leaders give it its due, rational consideration. Because new converts always seem to be more prone to zealotry and extremism.
I trust the leadership of the military to make the right decisions. I know the ability and professional excellence it takes to be a leader in the Army, and will not chock this up to a failure on their part to identify this broken individual as a threat. But I would also hope that we can find a lesson out of the tragedy, to be doubly vigilant in the future so as to protect our servicemen on our own soil.
As the story unfolds, it seems the police officer in question, a man who did live up to his duties, sacrificed himself heroically to put an end to this coward's miserable life.
Like I said, there's really nothing I can do but be angry; and writing this article, calling this man a "Douchebag", itself is below nothing in comparison to the horrors that true justice would dictate be inflicted on him for his terrorism, his cowardice, the repugnant stench left by his existence on this planet.
I'm sorry folks. Thanks for indulging me. If you can do something to help out the victims of this tragedy, please do.
According to Twitter Ft. Hood has activated a hotline for families:
254-288-7570 or 1-866-836-2751
I'm looking to see if a victim's fund has been set up, but so far I can't find anything. We will update this article with more information on how you can help.
Update: 9 PM: Hassan is still alive, merely wounded in the altercation. He is currently in custody. The police officer who wounded him him, an unnamed woman, has also survived and is being treated for her wounds.