Patterico's Pontifications


In the Foxhole With Hasan

Filed under: Political Correctness,Terrorism — DRJ @ 10:52 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Via the Instapundit:

“WALTER REED OFFICIALS ASKED, Was Hasan Psychotic? NPR’s Daniel Zwerdling has owned this story from the beginning. And this is damning:

“Put it this way,” says one official familiar with the conversations that took place. “Everybody felt that if you were deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan, you would not want Nidal Hasan in your foxhole.”

Not that they did anything to prevent someone else from finding themself in that position.”

This story is more unbelievable every day, but was it the result of a PC military or something more specific — like a PC medical-psychiatric profession?


40 Responses to “In the Foxhole With Hasan”

  1. You’d be amazed (or maybe you wouldn’t) how hard it is to actually administratively discharge someone, ESPECIALLY if they are a minority, without some actual criminal act.

    However, that this individual not only made Major, but was allowed to hold a sensitive position of responsibility as long as he did, definitely shows a clear failing by his chain of command to deal with his many “issues.”

    In other words, some people need to get relieved over this.

    Steve B (5eacf6)

  2. Yes, this story is more unbelievable ever day. But it illustrates the difficulty we face in anticipating these situations and intervening in a timely manner. It’s too easy after the fact to say why someone didn’t do something.

    I often challenge the pro-gun folks who comment on my blog to “police their own.” I often suggest that they share in the responsibility when one of their own goes postal and no one said anything beforehand. The truth is I recognize how difficult this would be. We must respect other people’s rights, we must allow people to make mistakes and say stupid things without calling the authorities on them or intervening directly. Yet, in cases of clear indications of instability we mustn’t be afraid to step in.

    But how does one do that without violating the privacy of someone who hasn’t done anything criminal yet? Doesn’t this represent a dilemma for those who want to interfere? The offending guy deserves to be innocent until proven guilty, does he not?

    So, before blaming this one on those who should have anticipated it, I’d try to remember how difficult that is to do.

    mikeb302000 (6127bb)

  3. mike, one way to anticipate crazed gunman attacking military installations, is, of course, to arm your military installations.

    Regardless, you’re completely wrong that no one could anticipate this attack would occur. Thanks to PC garbage, we simply were unable to deal with obvious, rank disloyalty. There was ample justification to remove this officer, and no doubt, many others like him. You say we must allow people to say stupid things. No, we must not allow our field grade officers to say stupid things.

    Dustin (bb61e3)

  4. I’ve held off commenting on this for personal reasons, but no more.

    So, before blaming this one on those who should have anticipated it, I’d try to remember how difficult that is to do.
    Comment by mikeb302000 — 11/11/2009 @ 11:31 pm

    It was their job to know and their duty to demonstrate the moral courage to do something about it. These were not subtle signs. Hasan should be hung once he is found guilty at trial and many of his coworkers should be “relieved for cause”, if not courts-martialed for dereliction of duty.

    They’re a disgrace to the uniform and the profession.

    Stashiu3 (44da70)

  5. if i were allowed to be armed at all times, irrespective of the bed wetting fears of the willfully uninformed and the willfully stupid, “policing our own”, whether that be a law abiding gun owner who snapped, or your garden variety criminal or wackj*b, would be easier than you typing drivel on the internet.

    unfortunately, you, and your ilk, have striven mightily to deprive me of my right to self defense and protection, then use said lack to claim that’s why i shouldn’t be allowed it.

    this traitor should have been put into administrative hold, or, since its fairly easy in the service, been admitted for observation. he should not have been allowed to continue to treat Soldiers, he should not have been transferred to Ft. Hood, and he should not still be breathing today.

    we need an Article 32 hearing post haste, followed by a scrupulously fair court martial, and the following command reviews and clemency hearings.

    right after that, this filth should be put to death in the manner proscribed under the UCMJ for murder, aiding the enemy and treason.

    failing that, just turn him loose in the middle of base, and tell him that if he makes the perimeter fence, he is free.

    redc1c4 (fb8750)

  6. Stash, I agree with you when this whole issue is taken in a political vacuum. Anyone in the military who “did the right thing” would’ve been discharged from the military by the PC deities in Congress and the White House.

    By all means, Hasan should’ve been given the Big Chicken Dinner or the double-D and been charged for his military-paid education. But that would’ve meant those giving him the Big Chicken Dinner would’ve risked their own loss of military retirement thru “less than honorable” discharges.

    The military was in a no-win situation here. But I definitely agree with the “tod durch den strang” finality of it all.

    John Hitchcock (3fd153)

  7. Sorry John, but I disagree. We had plenty of folks try to blame race, religion, or some other prejudice for the consequences of their own behavior. Some were officers and some were high-ranking. You have to have the moral courage (and competence) to document it if you’re going to be a mental health professional. It’s just not true that PC is that strong when the behavior is that blatant. Document it properly and it can be handled. Stick your head in the sand until the problem is transferred away and you should quit Behavioral Health and never look in a mirror again. They failed in their duty and their profession.

    Stashiu3 (44da70)

  8. Stash, you’re hard-core. I’d share my fighting-hole with you any time. (And there are no fox-holes in the Corps.)

    John Hitchcock (3fd153)

  9. The FBI should have informed this man’s commander of his email habits. And whoever let Hasan treat our soldiers in need, or said Hasan was deployable, or heard Hasan say traitorous things without reporting him… all of these people need to be sacked. If that’s really the incentive structure our military has resorted to, then fine… let’s make them CYA in the right direction.

    These are not automatons… these are field grade officers. They should have the initiative to lead, to see what’s going on, to combine forces if need be, and get this thing out of the Army.

    Stashiu3 guesses that the case could have been made well enough that PC concerns were overridden. He’s right! Isn’t that sickening?

    This man would not have lasted in my last unit. There is just no way in hell his comments would have been tolerated. There is a real problem with fear of frivolous EO complaints, but were these officers really unwilling to face that kind of threat for their fellow soldier’s safety? Someone said this guy was deployable… they knew the risks were huge, and I believe that in their gut, they knew they were passing the buck.

    Dustin (bb61e3)

  10. These weren’t supervisors in an Engineering Battalion. They were psychiatrists and senior physicians. For them to say after the fact that the guy was squirrely but they couldn’t do anything, what does that say for the poor Platoon Leader with concerns about a soldier? If the professionals can’t deal with it, how is an Infantry guy supposed to?

    It was their job and the call was an easy one. They failed to make it because they were incompetent and/or cowards. Not all of them, but the ones responsible should be held accountable. This was preventable.

    Stashiu3 (44da70)

  11. Here is an interesting take on the Hassan case from Stratfor (h/t Anduril at Just One Minute.)

    Stu707 (0981d5)

  12. It’s not like the FBI and Army had to predict Hasan was a likely terrorist. The man was disloyal and unfit for service. What’s amazing is that the evidence was so far beyond disloyalty that many did wonder if he was an actual threat.

    This is a rare example of an opportunity for a congressional hearing to do some good. I can only imagine how much ass covering is now occurring. If they were willing to let this real risk go on, in order to protect themselves from PC backlash… what are they willing to cover up now that their stake is greater and the man is out of circulation?

    Dustin (bb61e3)

  13. Dave, that’s the same story linked by Insty that is referenced in the post.

    Stashiu3 (44da70)

  14. “Dave, that’s the same story linked by Insty that is referenced in the post.”

    I got it.

    I’m just so rattled I had to link it again.

    Reading that hurts my brain.

    Dave Surls (16767b)

  15. I really was staying away from this one. The deal-breaker was:

    For one thing, Walter Reed and most medical institutions have a cumbersome and lengthy process for expelling doctors, involving hearings and potential legal battles. As a result, sources say, key decision-makers decided it would be too difficult, if not unfeasible, to put Hasan on probation and possibly expel him from the program.

    They didn’t deal with it because it was too hard. Pathetic.

    Stashiu3 (44da70)

  16. Stashiu3,
    I was interested in your take, Sir. Thank you for sharing it. I don’t expect you wanted to but it is a perspective I respect and value.

    Machinist (79b3ab)

  17. From the Pursuing Holiness sidebar, a counterbalancing video/song. WARNING: Safe for office but not safe for heart.

    John Hitchcock (3fd153)

  18. I’m surprised Obama isn’t pardoning Hasan and making him a General.

    PCD (74f8a9)

  19. My, how we have evolved. First they decided to treat terrorists killing us as a situation to be handled by the lawyers. Then we sent in the military and just killed the bad guys. Now are we going to give them anti-depressants and a nice chat on the couch?

    J (2946f2)

  20. Almost all active duty officers possess a Secret security clearance. Many of his activities, especially his online activities, should have gotten that clearance suspended. Which would, in itself, be not only a red flag, but a pretty good stake in the heart of his military career.

    If the FBI was able to definitively link him to seditious or otherwise subversive comments, his clearance should have been pulled immediately.

    Steve B (5eacf6)

  21. This was a tough situation for the officers at Walter Reed. I’m sure everyone above the level of captain knows the story of Tailhook and the inquisition that wrecked the careers of 1500 naval aviators. I have the story linked on my blog. Hasan is a member of a protected class, Muslims. I don’t know how many of you have followed the case of the flying imams. In that case, a federal judge has ruled that law enforcement officers have no personal immunity to lawsuit because “no competent law enforcement officer could reasonably have thought his behavior was legal.” That behavior was taking the six imams off the flight to question them.

    I personally know of psychotic psychiatrists. That sounds hard to believe but you have to understand the thinking of many psychiatrists. I know of one instance in which a psychiatric residency training program was considered therapy by the chief of the service who accepted the psychotic physician, a friend of mine.

    I will also say that this case will lead to universal distrust of Muslim soldiers in the military but that distrust will not result in chain of command actions. It will be similar to the huge effect on women in the military of the Tailhook case. The Navy still hasn’t recovered from that witch hunt but women pilots were never trusted again. Instead, they were passed along to the next level and some of them were killed in crashes of aircraft they were not qualified to fly.

    Nobody is going to talk about this. Remember, at the time of Tailhook, Congress was in the hands of the Democrats and is again now. Those senior medical officers read the newspapers and know that they would get no mercy from Democrats in a civil rights complaint from a Muslim officer.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  22. Maybe I’m trying to connect too many separate dots, but if the medical bureaucracy of the United States Army/military is ingrained with so much political correctness that it can’t act to protect the interests of its patient community, why would anyone expect Obamacare’s United States civilian medical bureaucracy created by Obamacare to protect the interests of its patient community?

    rfy (0f1c61)

  23. Mike K.
    Pat Schroeder spooked the Navy so badly in the wake of Tailhook that the first two women graduated from F14 school had grades that should have flunked them. Did flunk guys. One, Kara Hultgren, blew an approach and was killed. The other was grounded for unsafe flying. The thing is, carrier flight is the toughest there is. These two had gotten into carrier flight training, which means they weren’t total washouts. They might have been competent, effective aviators flying from runways that didn’t move.
    But one’s dead and the other’s career is ruined.
    Nothing and nobody, including legions of dead, gets in the way of the PC non-judgmentalists and the bean counters.

    Richard Aubrey (a9ba34)

  24. That was at the link. There have been others. Schroeder is still hated in the military for her bill that awarded one half of military pensions to ex-wives, regardless of other settlements.

    I have a Duke Law Review article linked on my blog with a series of cases of sex harassment suits in the military. Tailhook was the worst but there were lots of others. The military is very risk averse at higher levels and that tendency has been reenforced by the legal climate.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  25. Ah, Tailhook. As a San Diegan, I remember it well, although of course only through the prism of the Union-Tribune. Good to see the unreported part of the story.

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (0ea407)

  26. If you are treated by a psychiatrist, and you tell him “I fantasize about mass murder,” he isn’t likely to take any action to stop you. He will listen, take notes, prescribe meds, but he won’t try to talk you out of it, or explain the nature or danger of your obsession. Mental health pros try to be non-directive, try to avoid moral judgement, and protect patient confidentiality. I believe they consider that to be best practice.

    The pay is good.

    gp (72be5d)

  27. Psychiatrists got smacked pretty hard in California a few years ago with the “duty to warn” doctrine. That may be the biggest problem for the people at Walter Reed. On the other hand, the Tarasoff decision involved one identifiable person/

    If you think the PC discussion is far fetched, how about this ? The military is a bureaucracy. Anybody who has read WEB Griffin novels knows that. My own military experience was at the bottom levels, EM and 2/LT, so I never got into the bureaucracy very far.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  28. I think the moral here is that we are not as prepared as we need to be for the next terrorist attack. We are not. We seem to be waiting for it to happen for the first time and then we prepare lest it happen again. Just like 9/11. The evidence was available to the intelligence community that AQ was planning an attack of that magnitude. Maybe they did not believe it could happen until it happened. Since then it hasn’t happened again. We seem to have a reactive kind of approach to terrorism. We need to be more proactive. One thing is sure, this Hasan thing won’t happen again. We are wiser on hindsight. That needs to change before something truly catastrophic happens. God forbid.

    The Emperor (82e13a)

  29. The 9/11 attack was similar to Pearl Harbor. Roosevelt and the intelligence services suspected the Japanese would attack but thought it would be in east Asia. Ironically, had they done so, they might have won the war. It was the direct attack on our soil that set off the furious response.

    We had been attacked repeatedly during the Clinton administration and did not respond. Even the Cole attack that killed 17 sailors did not stimulate a response. The warnings of 9/11 that the Democrats tried to make such a big deal about were vague and were not taken seriously. I was not surprised when it happened because I had read Laurie Mylroie’s book in which she predicted that Saddam would seek revenge by attacking us and she wrote about the 1993 WTC attack as a prelude. She was discredited because there were no direct links to Saddam but she predicted the 9/11 attack.

    It’s interesting to read the post 9/11 hostile comments on Amazon that miss the significance of her prediction. I still don’t know if her theory about Ramzi Yousef was correct. Nobody knows. But she was correct about the attack.

    It’s also interesting to read Heart of a Soldier about Rick Rescorla. He took a job as chief of security for Morgan Stanley. He immediately recognized the risk of an attack on the WTC and worked on evacuation plans. He saved everybody on 9/11 and lost his own life when he went back for stragglers.

    Politicians and senior military officers are mostly concerned about their own careers. They are not good sources of decision. Bush was an exception in that respect.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  30. The liberals are in a trap here. If conversing with the enemy and supporting the enemies goals are wrong then what do they do with John Kerry?
    Kerry, while a serving naval Officer, communicated with Viet Cong and North Vietnamese in Paris, then advocated for their point of view.

    Have Blue (854a6e)

  31. How do you dig a foxhole in sand?

    The inquisitive Dana (3e4784)

  32. I think that would be a sandbagged fighting position. Een worse in parts of North Africa during WWII. While the area was a desert the ground was so hard and rocky the British troops could not dig at all. They ended up building sangars, fighting positions with rocks stacked into walls.

    Have Blue (854a6e)

  33. Have Blue, the remedy no one wants to face is putting Kerry on trial for Treason.

    PCD (1d8b6d)

  34. Someday, maybe 50 years from now, the Kerry file will come out and his less-than-honorable discharge that led to revocation of his medals. When he became a politician, they were restored but the dates are wrong. Of course, a second Obama term will probably mean that history stops with him.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  35. The warnings of 9/11 that the Democrats tried to make such a big deal about were vague and were not taken seriously.


    They were similar to warnings during 1944 that Hitler was determined to win the war. That certainly was not enough to prevent the Battle of the Bulge, any more than the warnings given to the Bush administration would have been sufficient to prevent 9/11.

    And yet, many leftists do not get that.

    Michael Ejercito (6a1582)

  36. Fox news is showing video of a tour they were given of Hasan’s apartment by the apartments super. Apparantly it has been realeased by the investigators. Of course you do not know what they removed (Fox points out an empty shredder and computer peripherals with no computer) but I noticed the lack of any thing like fingerprint powder. I would think that investigators would do every thing they could to know the identity of every person who visited Hasan while he lived there.

    Have Blue (854a6e)

  37. Recall Sgt. Asam Akbar? He was the “disgruntled platoon leader with an attitude” who rolled a few fragmentation grenades into a meeting of officers and followed up with automatic rifle fire. His attack left 1 dead and 12 wounded.

    Akbar was another one of those “diversity” members of the Army that Chief of Staff General George W Casey says makes us strong. Casey was also the guy opposed to the surge in Iraq. I think we’ve had just about all the leadership from General Casey that we can handle.

    It’s time for the General to step down and leave the fighting to younger men with the courage to identify and engage the enemy.

    ropelight (f3422c)

  38. It’s really naive to give too much credence to an NPR propagandist I think. They really really really want this guy to be perceived as mentally ill to where bless his heart why did no one see his pain. That’s just how they roll.

    happyfeet (71f55e)

  39. Comment by Mike K — 11/12/2009 @ 7:50 am

    Was it Laurie Mylroie who linked Timothey McVeigh with Elohim City and to Saddam Hussein?

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