Senator Susan Collins ripped in to representatives of the Department of Defense this week. The issue was one so absurd that I could not believe it at first. The Department has categorized the Fort Hood Shootings where Major Nidal Hasan murdered 13 people as an example of “workplace violence.” The Senator responded rightly; she was not incredulous, she was livid.
Calling this incident of terrorism workplace violence equates it with the proverbial postal employee gone wild. It gives one the impression that Hasan was stressed, and in his case, so worried about his impending deployment that he couldn’t take it and snapped. Come on people?! This was an act of Islamic terrorism. It was fueled by Hasan’s growing anger at U.S. policy, his radicalization by his contacts with the now-dead terrorist leader Anwar al-Awlaki, and was done out of hatred for people he, as an Army psychologist, was trained to help – other soldiers.
Look, I get that we should not willy nilly label things as Islamic terrorism, but his case is hardly hazy. First, it happened because members of the military didn’t speak up when obvious signs of Hasan’s growing radicalization and his vocal inappropriate remarks became rampant. Everyone was worried at diming out a Muslim for fear of being labeled an Islamophobe. That failure, inspired by political correctness, led to the deaths.
Now we compound the damage by calling it workplace violence! Again, the reason is clearly a reluctance to call it what it is – radical Islamist Terror.
We should never demonize all Muslims, that is wrong morally, and frankly, is a grossly ineffective way to fight terror. But for goodness sake, this one anybody can see. Do not demean the deaths of those folks at Ft. Hood and the loss to their families by sweeping this under a rug.