The FBI and the Army have conducted individual reviews of November's massacre of 13 soldiers at Fort Hood to try to determine how Nidal Malik Hasan's radicalism slipped through the cracks before his rampage. As we noted, officers were reprimanded, but no report explored why so many officers would look the other way.
Zuhdi Jasser, founder and president of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy powerfully deconstructs that failure in this column in the Daily Caller. Anyone who called out Hasan's pattern of radicalism prior to the shooting would have been blasted as an Islamophobe, Jasser argues.
"The current military and governmental culture precluded Hasan's superiors from questioning anything relating to his faith."
In the column, Jasser recounts an anecdote from an active Army colonel who asked an imam how he'd counsel a Muslim soldier who asked whether it was against Islam to fight fellow Muslims. The imam passed the buck, saying he'd suggest the soldier check with the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA).
Yet ISNA's response to the Fort Hood massacre included Imam Zaid Shakir's statement that there was no justification for the murders, just as there is "no legitimate reason for the deaths of the hundreds of thousands of Iraqi and Afghani civilians" who died in battles from "the US war machine [which] is the single greatest threat to world peace."
An incredulous Jasser notes ISNA's roots in the Muslim Brotherhood and asks: "This is the organization that an active-duty imam uses for guidance?"
The colonel's question had a simple answer, which Jasser offers:
"not only does his oath to this country and the military take precedence over any other oath, but the concept of the ummah (as Islamic nation) is dead and no longer relevant or competing for his allegiance from a spiritual perspective. There have been many wars fought between Muslims and this war is not a war against Muslims or Islam, but rather one to free the Iraqi and Afghani populations from their despots. If our active duty Muslim imams cannot confer such advice upon our Muslim soldiers they are a significant liability to our force protection."
More analysis is needed at the Pentagon, he says, to trace the radical political ideology that drove Hasan to kill his fellow soldiers. Jasser's essay teems with the passion of an American Navy veteran and a Muslim foe of Islamists who make excuses for the likes of Hasan rather than look for ways to prevent future tragedies. This is one essay well worth reading in full.