NDAA

Nidal Hasan Was Not A Terrorist For Purple Hearts Purposes, But Was for Kill List Purposes

|

terrorists when convenient

In the latest back-and-forth over the NDAA, the White House listed 32 concerns that may lead to a veto. No civil liberties concerns in the White House statement, but there is this:

The Administration objects to section 552, which would grant Purple Hearts to the victims of the shooting incidents in Fort Hood, Texas, and Little Rock, Arkansas.  The criminal acts that occurred in Little Rock were tried by the State of Arkansas as violations of the State criminal code rather than as acts of terrorism; as a result, this provision could create appellate issues.

PJ Media's Bridget Johnson takes this to mean the Administration doesn't consider the Fort Hood shooting by Nidal Hasan an act of terrorism:

Nidal Malik Hasan, a U.S. Army major who had email communications with senior al-Qaeda recruiter and Yemen-based cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, awaits military trial for the Nov. 5, 2009, massacre at Fort Hood, Texas, in which 13 were killed and 29 wounded.

After the Fort Hood shootings, the FBI quickly said there was no evidence of a greater terrorist plot at work, the Defense Department called it an "isolated" case, and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said Hasan's actions were not representative of his Muslim faith.

The cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, a U.S. citizen, was put on a kill list, and later killed, along with his teenage son, by the U.S. government, because the government claimed he was a dangerous terrorist. (The specific legal justification has not been released by the government) He was not indicted on a single count of terrorism, nevertheless the government considered him a terrorist threat grave enough to be become a target for assassination. His e-mail relationship with the Fort Hood killer was widely cited in the press after al-Awlaki was killed in a drone strike.

So the victims at Fort Hood are not deserving of Purple Hearts because the Fort Hood incident was not an act of terrorism, but insofar as it can be used to justify the targeted assassination of Anwar al-Awlaki, we're led to believe that U.S. officials believe he "inspired" terror attacks like… the shooting at Fort Hood.

All part of the rhetorical acrobatics this administration has performed to keep prosecuting a war on Muslim populations abroad and at home while eschewing the language of a war on terror in an effort to obfuscate the definitions of the war. And now those acrobatics leave us with a situation in which one U.S citizen is killed for inspiring a terror plot, but the troops killed in that terror plot aren't eligible for medals because it wasn't a terror plot. All while Congress passes laws making the whole planet a battlefield and everyone a potential enemby combatant in an ill-defined war on terror that was never declared and the government doesn't seem to want to acknowledge exists, except when they fight it. But don't ask questions. It's all a secret, even when it isn't.

NEXT: Advertising in the Olympic Corporate State

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. To admit that Hasan is a terrorist is to admit the Army was so PC that it let a terrorist in its officer corps. And we can’t do that. We can’t question any PC doctrine. I mean the next time a guy gives a professional development speech on the need to kill for the jihad, that guy needs to feel welcome in the Army.

    1. Having let a psychopath with more red flags in his file than a May Day parade remain in the service doesn’t look much better.

      1. No. but they can cover that up easier.

        I would love to defend Hassan. I am not kidding. He has a ready made defense of how he was totally losing it and the Army did nothing to help him and instead gave him a job counseling soldiers who had killed Muslims that was guaranteed to drive him over the edge. I would rake those bastards over the coals.

  2. PJ Media’s Bridget Johnson takes this to mean the Administration doesn’t consider the Fort Hood shooting by Hassan Nidal an act of terrorism.

    That isn’t exactly an earth-shaking deduction, is it? Nor is it exactly news.

  3. I just don’t understand the lengths these people will go to uphold their PC ideology? Is there any political gain to be had in refusing to call a terrorist a terrorist? At one point, they will have gone too far… Right?

  4. According to the criteria for getting a Purple Heart:

    the Purple Heart is awarded in the name of the President of the United States to any member of the Armed Forces of the United States who, while serving under competent authority in any capacity with one of the U.S. Armed Services after April 5, 1917, has been wounded or killed.

    It doesn’t matter if the called him a terrorist or not. Although, you could make an argument about serving under competent authority.

    1. Good find…how is this *not* a Purple Heart matter? The President should extend the Purple Hearts without prodding from Congress.

    2. Also, this:

      It is not intended that such a strict interpretation of the requirement for the wound or injury to be caused by direct result of hostile action be taken that it would preclude the award being made to deserving personnel.

  5. I said it in the morning links when I posted this story, and I just have to say it again: Obama and the people in his administration are the absolute scum of the earth.

    It’s bad enough that the needless Fort Hood Massacre happened in the first place; it wouldn’t have if the Army had heeded the advice of its own people and taken the precautions they should have against this obviously dangerous lunatic. It’s bad enough that the families of the victims can’t get even get the minimum level of justice, as they won’t put this psycho on trial.

    But to refuse to even grant the victims the little fig leaf of a Purple Heart? I’m really beside myself over this, because it’s such a damn outrage.

  6. The Tea Party are the only domestic terrorists. And Sarah Palin.

    1. That is another reason why they won’t do this. They will not admit that there is any terror threat in this country from Muslims, only tea baggers. If this had happened in Germany, they would be more honest about it.

      1. Homeland Security warned that military veterans might be terrorists, but I guess Hasan wasn’t a veteran, he was still in service. Anyway, he probably didn’t have a confederate flag in his pickup, or even a Ron Paul sticker, so he doesn’t fit the profile.

        Except the part about attacking U.S. troops. That fits the profile somewhat.

      2. AND they shrunk my Snickers! Martial Law!

  7. What an unforced error. If you award the medals, it’s a non-story. Nobody notices.

    Instead, right before Memorial Day, let’s issue a veto threat.

    1. Spot on.
      Professional politicians making an obviously foolish decision.
      And giving their opponents evidence to use in charges of anti-US, anti-military, anti-apple pie, ….

  8. How is Ft. Hood not a legitimate military target for our enemies?

    Especially considering the neocons at PJ Media think a residential house with 1 suspected terrorist and 30 women and children is a legitimate military target.

    Oh wait, this is “a new kind of warfare”. One where everything the enemy does is horrible evil terrorism and everything we do is righteous and just.

    1. What does this mean, exactly? I sure hope you’re not saying that the Ft. Hood victims had it coming, because I have to tell you, it almost sounds to me like that’s what you’re implying here.

      In any event, I have no idea what it has to do with the administration wanting to deny them posthumous Purple Heart medals, not to mention justice.

      1. The Ft Hood victims signed up for a military that was at war. If the enemy sends someone onto their base and caps them, that’s war, not terrorism.

        Hypothetical for you: say that Iran fulfills their threat and blocks the Strait of Hormuz (an act of war). Then we discover an Iranian Revolutionary Guardsman who has converted to the pro-democracy side and wants to stick it to the Iranian govt, and we contact him encouraging him to shoot a bunch of his fellow Revolutionary Guardsmen on their base.

        Is that an act of terrorism on our part?

    2. A whole new level of Contrarian Trolling for you, tulpa. Regardless, “legitimate military targets” get the Purple Heart, so your point is off topic AND stupid. Congrats.

      1. Off topic? Did you miss the title of the thread? The topic is whether Nidal Hasan was a terrorist.

        And this substitution of insult for argument is the kind of glib garbage I would expect from Epi and Warty, not from you. Maybe I was wrong in thinking you weren’t cut from the same cloth.

    3. What Randian said. Jesus H, this is scraping the bottom. Moar quality!

    4. Sure it is a legitimate target. Attacking is perfectly legitimate under the laws of war. What is not legitimate is wearing a US uniform while doing it you half wit.

      1. I guess I missed the part at the end of The Dirty Dozen where they were court-martialed under the UCMJ for dressing in German uniforms while attacking a gathering of officers. Or prosecuted for war crimes, at least.

        Subterfuge is perfectly legit in war. You lose Geneva protections of course, but that doesn’t make it against the laws of war.

  9. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said Hasan’s actions didn’t represent his Muslim faith.

    Am I the only one who finds this kind of PC BS obnoxious? He sure sounds like someone whose religious beliefs encouraged him to murder innocents. I mean, yes, there are plenty of sane, moderate Muslims out there, but talking about jihad and martyrdom operations in non-religious terms just to be PC is ridiculous.

    1. They may have represented his own warped personal faith-related viewpoints, but they didn’t represent the Muslim faith as it commonly is adhered to. Any more than Andrea Yates’ drowning her kids represented the Christian faith.

      1. Yeah, and I’m pretty sure every Christian I’ve ever met would be outraged. Compare that to celebrations after 9/11. Something around 15-30% of worldwide Muslims support violence against Americans. It’s a real ideology not an effect of severe depression and psychosis.

        Yates’ preacher fought against the perception that he was calling for murder, and al-Awlaki called Hassan a hero.

        Again, most Muslims don’t support this, especially American ones. But it’s silly to pretend we’re fighting “terror” rather than a particular strain of religious fundamentalism.

  10. The fact that the government has time to delve into this level of detail around such minutia simply reinforces the reality that we are DOOOOOOOOOOOOOMED.

    But then I already knew that.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.