Major Nidal Hasan’s Beard

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This week military judge Gregory Gross barred Major Nidal Malik Hasan from appearing in court because he has refused to shave a beard he reportedly grew as a badge of his deep Islamic faith. The beard, judge Gross said, was a violation of Army policy. As it happens, so were Hasan’s actions in November of 2009 at Fort Hood, Texas.

As one of the early press accounts noted, Major Hassan packed a revolver and an FN Herstal pistol, and stuffed the cargo pockets of his camouflage pants full of 20-round ammunition clips. Then he opened fire on U.S. Army soldiers while shouting “Allahu akbar,” or “Allah is great.” In a matter of minutes Hassan, a U.S. Army psychiatrist trained to help soldiers deal with the horrors of war, had killed thirteen and wounded thirty.

He was methodical, aiming carefully at those seeking cover. Kimberly Munley, a police officer married to a Fort Hood soldier, saw Major Hasan chasing a wounded soldier across a courtyard and opened fire on Hasan. He returned fire and hit her twice, but one of her shots nailed Hasan in the chest and took him down. Munley survived the attack but 13 others did not.

Hasan’s victims included Aaron Nemelka, 19, Francheska Velez, 22 and pregnant with her first child, and Michael Cahill, a 62-year-old reservist. The mass shooting was the worst ever to take place on a U.S. military base. Hasan’s commander, Col. Kimberly Kesling, said it was all “a shock.” It shouldn’t have been.

Hasan’s militant brand of Islam was not exactly a secret. He had defended suicide bombings in an internet posting, and he had been giving away personal items. He prepared carefully for the killing spree – both handguns were not military issue – but despite the cries of “Allah is great” military brass gave him the benefit of the doubt on the role his religion, Islam, played in the attack.

It could have been his upcoming deployment to Afghanistan, they said. It didn’t seem that way to soldiers who knew Hasan. It takes a major act of cognitive dissonance to deny that devotion to Islam was a motive. As for the means and opportunity, those are clear, and to paraphrase Rod Steiger from In the Heat of the Night, we have the bodies which are dead. All thirteen of them.

In a case of this magnitude, political correctness and petty military rules about appearance should not interfere with the judicial process. Judge Gross should let Major Hasan keep the beard, and allow him to be present in the hearings. As Hasan’s August 20 trial date approaches, the nation would do well to ponder the implications of this episode.

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  • logdon

    Deep cover? The man was virtually telegraphing his intent yet still nothing was done.

    When an army is more interested in playing politically correct games1/ than protecting its own personnel we have a problem.

    1/ Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano stated "we object to—and do not believe—that anti-Muslim sentiment should emanate from this … This was an individual who does not, obviously, represent the Muslim faith."[109] Chief of Staff Gen. George W. Casey, Jr. said "I'm concerned that this increased speculation could cause a backlash against some of our Muslim soldiers … Our diversity, not only in our Army, but in our country, is a strength. And as horrific as this tragedy was, if our diversity becomes a casualty, I think that’s worse."[110]

    • KarshiKhanabad

      You demonstrate what has been obvious ever since this murderous devout Muslim carried out his dastardly act: the military chain of command doesn't want this court martial any more than Hasan does. Even if his defense relies solely on the claim of insanity (and Hasan is not crazy, he is a perfectly rational Muslim carrying out the Koran's command to slay infidels wherever they are found) it's going to be laid out that his superiors all the way up to the Chief of Staff were guilty of cowardly if not criminal negligence in failing to interdict this barefaced threat to American lives. If & when he goes down, a lot of bereaved family members will be waiting in the wings with wrongful death & negligence lawsuits of their own. The lid is eventually going to blow on this case, and it won't be a pretty sight for the cause of pro-Islamic political correctness.

      • logdon

        And the evidence will be there in both Napolitano and Casey's kneejerk reaction.

        No redacted and with held emails for Holder's merry crew.

    • PhillipGaley

      In looking at any Moslem nation, it's easy to see how that, with all Moslems being considered, the more the diversity, the greater the opposition to diversity; and, there being a sufficient percentage of Moslems, the Moslems will begin agitating to eliminate diversity

      On the two mentioned, I think that, G0D should take life from those two, . . . just for some small measure of peace in the country, . . . but, . . . neither do I pray for such and, as G0D is sovereign, no doubt, if HE thought that, that were the thing to do, . . . HE would so do, . . . While I don't exactly understand mercy, as I see the YT declarations of former Moslems, I feel thankful that, G0D had not thus far lowered the boom on the Moslems; so, . . .

  • Gene W 1938

    Why a person who hates the constitution of our country, and then murdered over a dozen patriots as a treasonous act is still has not been sentenced only can be understood if the sentencing is to take place after our elections so the villain would not be pardon by his fellow believer!

    • curmudgeon

      you have a valid point. on the other hand, they could convict him of half the murders, and dare the weasel in chief to pardon him. if he does, try him for the other crimes after the muslim is out of office.

    • Roger

      You haven't been calling for his trial much, why care now?

  • oldtimer

    He should have been hanged immediatly. He had his trial by the witnesses and victims, what more is needed. Send him to God. He will be surprised to see how wrong his faith is.

    • PhillipGaley

      I agree with those who say that, Islam is no religious faith at all, but rather is it, a criminal ideology, invented and maintained by bad men, and as a utility for bad men, . . .

  • BS77

    The tenth year of observance of the 9/11 terror attacks has come and gone….now nearly eleven years…and KSM and his crew of terror thugs are still eating ice cream down at Guantanamo……this is justice? The Ft. Hood shooter will likely be given a prison sentence and that's about it. I doubt he will be executed, due to the current malaise of PC hand wringing apologetics that stand in place of military justice. He is a traitor that killed and wounded many on a US military base….an act of treason, isn't it???????

  • mlcblog

    It is unbelievable that he has not been brought to trial. What spinelessness we are now seeing in our formerly great American Army.

  • drbukk

    Obama, as commander-in-chief cannot oversee the execution of a fellow Muslim by the military. That is why no guilty verdict in Guantanamo will occur in his administration and why he tried to shoulder the KSM trial over to the US courts.

  • paul

    As a veteran, I am offended that Nidal has not been tried. There are many eye witnesses. His guilt is not in doubt. Former President Mackinley's assassin killed him in September was tried, found guilty and executed by December. In the meantime we are continuing to pay this animal Nidal and providing him with care.

    • curmudgeon

      i believe president garfield's assassin was executed before the second month after the crime.

      • curmudgeon

        and after lincoln's assassination, they even executed an innocent women, and sentenced an innocent man to life in prison.

  • SoCalMike

    The Culture of Officialdom and widespread mental conformity that turned a blind eye to major Hasan and allowed him to fester haven't changed one iota.
    Now the US State Dept Quislings are in bed with the Brotherhood and openly courting the greater Islamic world by squeezing Israel for more diplomatic concessions so diplomats can pretend to be doing something productive and by promising the OIC at the UN First Amendment exceptions and restrictions.
    Next time you hear Obama or some general say "We are not at war with Islam" ask yourself, "Did Islam UNDECLARE war on the West since 9/11??"
    I didn't get that memo, Mr. President or Mr. General.

    These mentally conformed career bureaucrats would never in a million years do a thing to uncover a repeat of Major Hasan because they know if they dared, the same conformed PC culture would chase them into retirement and shame with false accusations of racism and hatred so the same PC robots keep on assuring us we aren't at war with Islam.
    Too bad the jihadis and their Brotherhood allies didn't get that memo.

  • Ghostwriter

    Maj. Nidal should get the death penalty. Preferably,the electric chair.

  • rulieg

    the article didn't even mention the most outrageous part of it: when the Army released its final report on Fort Hood, they concluded that it had been an episode of "workplace violence." the word "Islam" did not even appear in the report.

    remember that Eric Holder couldn't even admit that Islam might be the motive for terrorism (yet another one of Holder's fabulous apperances before Congress).

    November can't come soon enough.

  • mjazz

    Freedom of religion does not equal freedom to murder.
    Yet the only way we have to eliminate muhammadism is freedom of expression and the influence of Western culture.