Posted by Curt on 23 July, 2012 at 2:00 pm. 3 comments already!


Marc A. Thiessen:

As Americans try to make sense of the tragic shooting in Aurora, Colo., it is natural to reflect on other similar incidents that have scarred our collective memory. And in recent days, this massacre has been compared to shootings at Columbine, Virginia Tech, Tucson, the Holocaust Memorial and Fort Hood.

The problem? One of these incidents is not like the others. The Aurora shooting was a senseless act of violence; Fort Hood was a terrorist attack.

The Post quoted a forensic psychiatrist who declared that the shooters in all these cases had a “common motive.” No, Army Maj. Nidal Hasan’s motive was different from that of James Holmes or Seung-Hui Cho. Hasan’s was the same motive that led 19 evil men to fly airplanes into the Pentagon and the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001: He wanted to wage jihad against the United States.

One day before the Aurora shootings, former FBI and CIA director William Webster released a 173-page report on the tragic failure to prevent the Fort Hood attack. It included declassified details of e-mail messages between Hasan and Anwar al-Awlaki, the leader of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula who was killed last year in a U.S. drone strike. In one e-mail, Hasan asks Awlaki whether he considered Muslims who join the U.S. armed forces and “kill other us soldiers in the name of Islam … with the goal of helping Muslims/Islam (Lets just assume this for now) fighting Jihad and if they did die would you consider them shaheeds” (martyrs).

In another e-mail, Hasan asks Awlaki about “the issue of ‘collateral damage’ where a decision is made to allow the killing of innocents for a valuable target.” The FBI intercepted these and other troubling e-mails but concluded that they posed no serious danger and that an investigation was not necessary.

On Nov. 5, 2009, Hasan entered the Fort Hood deployment center, jumped on a desk and yelled “Allahu Akbar!” as he shot and killed 13 people and wounded 43 others. Soon after the Fort Hood attack, Awlaki stated that while he neither ordered nor pressured Hasan to harm Americans, “I blessed the act because it was against a military target. And the soldiers who were killed were not normal soldiers, but those who were trained and prepared to go to Afghanistan and Iraq.”

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