It’s official: political correctness prevented Fort Hood assassin Nidal Hasan’s Army superiors from acting upon signs of his incipient jihadist tendencies. AP reported Monday that “a Defense Department review of the shooting rampage at Fort Hood, Texas, has found the doctors overseeing Maj. Nidal Hasan’s medical training repeatedly voiced concerns over his strident views on Islam and his inappropriate behavior, yet continued to give him positive performance evaluations that kept him moving through the ranks.”
Hasan rose to the rank of major even as he turned what was supposed to have been a lecture on psychiatry into a diatribe on the Koran’s punishments for unbelievers and doctrines of warfare against them. According to AP, “he gave a class presentation questioning whether the U.S.-led war on terror was actually a war on Islam. And students said he suggested that Shariah, or Islamic law, trumped the Constitution and he attempted to justify suicide bombings.” He rose through Army ranks even as he justified suicide bombing and spouted hatred for America while wearing its uniform.
His superiors and those around him noted his statements, and were worried about them. “Yet no one in Hasan’s chain of command,” reports AP, “appears to have challenged his eligibility to hold a secret security clearance even though they could have because the statements raised doubt about his loyalty to the United States.”
Why didn’t they?
Because they knew what would happen if they did.
If Nidal Hasan had been removed from his position or even simply reprimanded and disciplined in the months or years before he massacred thirteen people in cold blood at Fort Hood, it isn’t hard to imagine what might have happened. Groups like the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) would have been quick to charge the Army with “bigotry” and “anti-Muslim hatred.” The mainstream media would have embarked upon a full-bore witch hunt about the alleged witch hunt against Muslims in the military, interviewing the weeping mothers of Muslim soldiers killed in the line of duty while fighting for the U.S. in Iraq or Afghanistan. Army generals would have had to answer questions about alleged discrimination against Muslims in the military on the Sunday morning talk shows. And ultimately the President of the United States would order a special effort to make Muslims in the military feel at home and welcome.
Worse still, those who might have complained about Hasan would have faced public abuse, smearing by CAIR and MPAC as bigots, and possibly even disciplinary action from their superiors. Chris Matthews, Jon Stewart and Bill Maher would have subjected them to nationally broadcast ridicule. All Army personnel would have been ordered into sensitivity training, perhaps run by CAIR itself.
It isn’t hard at all to imagine such a scenario, because it has played out in real life more than once. For years now CAIR, MPAC and other Islamic advocacy groups in the U.S. have done all they could to demonize everyone who speaks honestly about the threat of jihad and Islamic supremacism. Nor have they limited their attacks to public figures: CAIR was behind an effort in 2008 by six imams who were taken off a flight for acting suspiciously to sue the passengers who reported the imams to airline personnel. If their attempt had succeeded, Americans would be afraid to report suspicious behavior in airplanes for fear of being sued.
And even thought that effort failed, people are indeed afraid to speak up about Muslims behaving suspiciously. The cost is, for most, simply too high.
And so for CAIR, MPAC, and the rest, the Fort Hood massacre was in a very real sense a mission accomplished: “Islamophobia” was duly avoided. Nidal Hasan was not removed from his post, and no steps were taken to protect anyone else from him. All this cost was 13 dead and 38 wounded. And in response, General George Casey has said the loss of the Army’s “diversity” because of Hasan’s jihad would be worse than the murders themselves — indicating that the political correctness that got us into this fix is still with us, and still putting us all at risk.
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