A Fort Hood soldier was sentenced Wednesday to a month in jail for refusing to deploy to Afghanistan over his beliefs that the war violates international law.Fort Hood US Army base in the heart of Texas is home to some 50,000 US soldiers, their families and civilian support staff. The complex is next door to the town of Killeen where in 1991 another infamous shooting took place: a man rammed his truck into a cafe and shot dead 23 people, yelling beforehand, "This is what Central Texas did to me!"
Spc. Victor Agosto, 24, of Miami, pleaded guilty to disobeying lawful orders and was sentenced at the central Texas Army post.
"I really had no Army way of being consistent with my conscience," Agosto said. "The courts haven't recognized soldiers' rights to refuse an order they believe to be illegal.... I believe future courts will find that the Afghanistan war is illegal because it violates international law."
Like a gigantic departure lounge for troops sent to America's war theaters, the base is the first and last port of call for thousands of troops returning from, and being sent (or resent) to, Iraq and Afghanistan. What took place there on the day Guy Fawkes is remembered for high treason, recalls similar incidents that take place all too frequently in the US. A gunman (or two or three or more) shot dead 13 and wounded 31 soldiers and support staff at one or more facilities on the base. Within 24 hours, the investigation was all but declared a wrap as media consensus crystalized around a single perpetrator; a US soldier. An army Major no less. A Muslim army Major. In fact, a Muslim soldier of Palestinian descent. We couldn't help but think that this man seemed an exceedingly convenient scapegoat for a demoralised country conditioned by years of racist anti-Muslim propaganda. With the army changing its story throughout November 5, I smelled a cover-up and decided to dig around a little to see what interesting connections might come up.
The initial reports said that 7 people had been killed and 12 wounded in a shoot-out. Reuters relayed that two gunmen had been dressed in "military uniform." One had been taken into custody, but the other was still "on the loose."
Sgt. Major Jamie Posten, speaking on the phone from the base, told CNN that there was definitely more than one shooter involved:
This was also reported by MSNBC, which added breaking news that the shooter still on the loose was now surrounded at the base's postal exchange or commissary, completely separate buildings from the Soldier Readiness Center (where soldiers undergo medical screening prior to deployment), and was armed with a high-powered sniper rifle.
The military brass at Fort Worth confirmed these reports, Lieutenant Colonel Nathan Banks saying that two shooters were involved.
Then it was reported in local media (CentralTexasNow.com) that Fort Hood was "under attack from three shooters":
There are reports this afternoon that there are one or more shooters at a PX (Post Exchange) at Fort Hood, Texas.So it appears that at least three gunmen were shooting at people in different incidents which took place in different locations. A Dow Jones Newswire press release further suggests that they took place at different times:
The shooters are wearing military uniforms, but have not been identified as members of the military.
Given the fact that there are 3 shooters, the likelihood that it is a mental health/PTSD issue is less likely.
Fort Hood is on "lockdown". One gunman is reportedly in custody, and the third gunman is reportedly firing on S.W.A.T. teams that have been deployed.
A second gunman is in custody after a shooting at the Army's Fort Hood in Texas in which at least seven people were killed and 12 wounded, reports KCEN-TV of Waco. The report comes about two hours after a first suspect was captured, shortly after gunfire broke out.A curious report on CNN quoted another "senior military officer" describing how "men in suits" arrived to take a suspect away following a stand-off at a golf course two and half miles from the base:
The incident reportedly began at Fort Hood's theater and then moved to the Soldier Readiness Processing Center, Killeen City Public Information Officer Hillary Shine told Fox News.
A senior officer who was playing golf Thursday near Fort Hood, Texas, told CNN he witnessed the arrest of one of the two surviving suspects of the shooting at the Army installation.The base's main postal exchange and commissary are located next to each other on Clear Creek Road. It's around a mile (1.5 km) by road south of the SRC, as you can see by clicking on this map:
Shortly after the shooting, the officer said, military police told him to clear the course and he saw other MPs surround the building that held the golf carts, he said.
The senior officer said he ducked into a nearby house for cover as 30 to 40 cars carrying MPs approached.
He said he saw a soldier in battle-dress uniform, his hands in the air. The MPs ordered him to lie on the ground and open his uniform, presumably to ensure he was not carrying explosives, the senior officer said.
He said an MP told him that authorities considered the man to be a suspect in the shootings after having overheard the man say he was with the shooter.
The man was surrounded for 25 to 30 minutes, until a convoy of vehicles arrived, led by a Ford Crown Victoria and carrying men in suits, and he was taken away, the senior officer said.
The golf course is about 2.5 miles from Fort Hood, the officer told CNN.
The senior commander of the base Lt. Gen. Bob Cone briefed press later that afternoon:
Note how he stresses that the shooter, confirmed to be a soldier, was killed and that "we since then have apprehended two additional soldiers that are suspects." Note how he also says that, "all the casualties took place in the initial incident which took place at 13:30" in one location, the Soldier Readiness Center (SRC).
According to this version of events, only 4 minutes elapsed from the time the alarm was raised until officer Kimberley Munley arrived on scene and heroically ended the carnage. But US army bases have their own security in the form of Military Police. Why were they only involved in the pursuit of the 'mystery suspects', while the incident at the SRC - which after all, has become the sole incident - was left to civilian law enforcement?
The lone assassin is credited with firing over 100 rounds inside 5 minutes. From 2 handguns. 43 dead and wounded within 5 minutes? And no one in the crowded hall could stop him before he presumeably reloaded and that much carnage had ensued? As many have pointed out, these weren't school children or students cowed under desks. They were trained killers who could surely have effected some kind of defensive response, even without firearms. General Cone claimed that bullets were richocheting off the center's walls, hence the high hit rate. Hmm, magic bullets! "Friendly fire" was also suggested to cover the high number of shots fired:
Officials are not ruling out the possibility that some of the casualties may have been victims of "friendly fire," that in the mayhem and confusion at the shooting scene some of the responding military officials may have shot some of the victims.But this was retracted once the three shooters became one dead gunman and two suspects. The cover story went into overdrive at this point: ABC News reported that these two other soldiers had been "released " and the dead gunman was revivified to play the role of patsy. There was no "friendly fire", no second or third shooter, just the solitary killer being kept alive in a hospital "somewhere in central Texas."
"Sir, they are opening fire over there!" the man told him. At first, he thought it was a training exercise - then heard three volleys and saw people running.
armed with two handguns. Echoing Hasan's superhuman feats, Seung-Hui Cho fired 174 shots in nine minutes in four classrooms.
Hasan then earned a doctorate in psychiatry from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland. From 2003 through this summer, he was an intern, a resident and then a fellow at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington D.C.. He worked as a psychiatrist there treating returning soldiers and veterans for post-traumatic stress disorder.
Hasan was commissioned as a captain, but was promoted to major in May this year. He showed no sign of physical or mental problems in medical examinations as recently as September.
He was posted to Fort Hood in either April or July (reports conflict), trying to avoid deployment to Iraq/Afghanistan by asking a lawyer to invesigate the possibility of exemption. This failed and he seems to have accepted the decision.
The only image of Nidal Malik Hasan initially broadcast was this one taken from the website of an organization called the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress:the focus of its research is "to better understand the human trauma response and its mechanisms of disease and recovery." There used to be a page about Dr Nidal Malik Hasan MD on the CSTS website but if you look under 'center members - disaster fellows', his profile is no longer listed.
The website is now back online and has been given a new look. Most importantly though, Hasan's profile has been scrubbed. In fact, they seem to be in the process of scrubbing the web archive of Hasan's profile also. So the page detailing his position and achievements with this organization were taken down. What is it they did not want us to see?
Terrorism Preparedness, the CSTS mission statement tells us that
The Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress conducts research, education, consultation and training to advance terrorism preparedness amongst our nation's leaders, its military and its civilian population. Terrorism, a particular human-made disaster, has been part of the world for centuries. It can have widespread physical and psychological consequences. Because terrorism not only kills individuals but more importantly instills terror in the millions who hear and see the terrorist events, the health and distress of the nation must be considered.The site also carries downloadable links to the following Resources:
Terrorism targets the morale, cohesion and social capital the shared sense of values and future of the nation. For these reasons, the mental health of the nation's people and their distress is now a concern for national security.
The Center brings a unique perspective to it research, education and consultation around terrorism preparedness. Its scientists and resources bridge two important disciplines that are essential for understanding, preparing for, responding to and recovering from the threat or exposure to weapons of mass destruction. These disciplines are military and disaster psychiatry. Both are inextricably linked in our ongoing war on terrorism.
Military and disaster psychiatry address strategic planning and care demands in non-traditional and extreme environments in which resources are overwhelmed. This requires coordination between civilian, non-military governmental and military agencies.
The Center advances a coordinated response to terrorism preparedness that integrates principles of military and disaster psychiatry. For practical purposes, this website uses the terms military psychiatry to describe the Center's work that is primarily focused on our military population, and disaster psychiatry for work that is primarily focused on our civilian community. It is important to view both disciplines as interconnected.
The Center develops and provides Disaster and Terrorism Preparedness Fact Sheets for military health care providers, soldiers and families, healthcare workers and Business leaders. The Center has authored numerous articles and books on terrorism and bioterrorism preparedness and management of individual and community responses.
Disaster and Military PsychiatryThere has been a new addition to the website since its 'revamp': a paper outlining guidelines to Fort Hood residents about how to assist children coping from the trauma of the shootings: Talking to Children about the Ft. Hood Disaster.
Prisoners of War: Talk Today
Trauma, Memory and PTSD
(public radio interview on WAMU 88.5 FM)
Terrorism, Public Health and Mental Health
(University of Albany, SUNY)
Here is a list of the papers the Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress published:
Psychological and Behavioral Impacts of Bioterrorism
(published in the PTSD Research Quarterly)
The Threat of Biological Weapons
(published in the Journal of the American Medical Association)
Conference on "Planning for Bioterrorism: Behavioral and Mental Health Responses to Weapons of Mass Destruction and Mass Disruption." Executive Summary
Conference on "Planning for Biological Events: Responses to Terrorism and Infectious Disease Outbreaks." Executive Summary
Preparing for the Psychological Consequences of Disaster: A Public Health Strategy
(National Academies of Science, Institute of Medicine)
Large-scale Quarantine Following Biological Terrorism in the United States: Scientific Examination, Logistic and Legal Limits, and Possible Consequences
(published in the Journal of the American Medical Association)
Risk Communication, the West Nile Virus Epidemic and Bioterrorism
(published in the Journal of Urban Health)
Bioterrorism and the People: How to Vaccinate a City Against Panic
(published in Clinical Infectious Diseases)
A Plague On Your City: Observations from TOPOFF
(published in Clinical Infectious Diseases)
Shining Light on Dark Winter
(published in Clinical Infectious Diseases)
Implications of Pandemic Influenza for Bioterrorism Response
(published in Clinical Infectious Diseases)
Communicating in a Crisis: Risk Communication Guidelines for Public Officials
Homeland Security Fact Sheet - Radiological Attack
Workplace Preparedness for Terrorism
(published by The Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress)
Psychological Responses of Rescue Workers: Fire Fighters and Trauma
(published in the American Journal of Orthopsychiatry)
Community Consultation Following a Major Air Disaster
(published in the Journal of Community Psychology)
The Nature of a Traumatic Stressor: Handling Dead Bodies
(published in the Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease)
Psychiatric Dimensions of Disaster: Patient Care, Community Consultation, and Preventive Medicine
(published in the Harvard Review of Psychiatry)
Early Mental Health Intervention Reduces Mass Violence Trauma
(published by The National Institutes of Mental Health)
The Prisoner of War (Chapter 17) - Emotional Aftermath of the Persian Gulf War
APA Practice Guideline for the Treatmentof Patients With Acute Stress Disorder and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder
Understanding PTSD and ASD
In May, the same month he received promotion to major, Dr. Hasan participated in a task force panel hosted by the Homeland Security Policy Institute, a think-tank connected to George Washington University. He contributed to the task force's report on 'Security Priorities for the Next Administration.'
Does it make sense that an Army Major with Hasan's academic background and involvement in organizations bridging military and government interests in such matters as Large-scale Quarantine Following Biological Terrorism in the United States would exhibit the symptoms of a deranged lone gunman? We naturally wonder if, besides being a Muslim, there is a connection between his 'extra-curricular' military duties and his being selected to take the fall on November 5?
The one 'black mark' on Hasan's successful military and academic career is a poor evaluation report from the Walter Reed Hospital:
For six years before reporting for duty at Fort Hood, in July, the 39-year-old Army major worked at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center pursuing a career in psychiatry, as an intern, a resident and, last year, a fellow in disaster and preventive psychiatry. But his record wasn't sterling. At Walter Reed, he received a poor performance evaluation, according to an official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the case publicly.A poor evaluation report - versus 6 years of otherwise successful academic and professional achievement - during which time he himself underwent counselling. The media dutifully belabored this point, insinuating that it suggested disloyalty or a lack of duty. But only a conscienceless robot would fail to experience conflict in this field of work, dealing daily with traumatized war vets and their tales of horror from the killing fields in Iraq and Afghanistan, coupled with the fact that staff and patients at Walter Reed suffer deplorable working conditions because of a government that doesn't care about war veterans. After all, what use is a soldier that can't kill anymore?
With his membership of the CSTS erased and his solid military and academic record leaving them scraping the barrel for mud to throw at him, anonymous (Secret Team) leaks to the press next revealed that the FBI had been tracking Major Hasan for 6 months because of some "dubious comments" he made about suicide bombers:
At least six months ago, Hasan came to the attention of law enforcement officials because of Internet postings about suicide bombings and other threats, including posts that equated suicide bombers to soldiers who throw themselves on a grenade to save the lives of their comrades.The actual content of the post did not justify or praise suicide bombings as the media have implied: it was a brief attempt to objectively understand the strategy behind them. Of course, just mentioning "suicide" and "bomber" in the same sentence would have alerted every intelligence agency database in the US and elsewhere, a fact Muslims living in the US must be keenly aware of 8 years after 9/11. Yet we're supposed to believe that the FBI just sat on that information for six months? The FBI have gone to farcical lengths to generate the illusion that America is overrun with terrorist sleeper cells, yet they did not at least take Hasan in for questioning just for mentioning the words 'suicide bomber'? Maybe they did. Maybe they thought Hasan's faux-pas could come in handy one day. But it's far more likely that Hasan was never invesitgated because he never wrote the web post; the obscure comment was fabricated and attributed to the patsy after he was chosen as the new face of Terror™.
They had not determined for certain whether Hasan is the author of the posting, and a formal investigation had not been opened before the shooting, said law enforcement officials who spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to discuss the case.
People that knew him on the base described their sheer disbelief that Hasan could be capable of such a thing. As did the man who knows him best, his grandfather:
"He is a doctor and loves the U.S." Ismail Mustafa Hamad told Reuters in an interview at his home in the Palestinian town of al-Bireh. "America made him what he is."Much ado has been made about his giving away 2 copies of the Koran as gifts. He gave one to his landlord, who, irony of ironies, shares the same name as another American Muslim persecuted for imaginary crimes against the state, Jose Padilla. Implied in virtually all press coverage of this act of kindness is the insinuation that this is typical of what an 'extremist' would do, as if the Koran itself were a terrorism manual. Quite why any undercover al-Qaeda operative, having spent over a decade working his way deep into enemy territory, would then reveal his game the day before his big day of martyrdom has not yet been explained by anyone in the mainstream media. Here's what really happened during Hasan's last encounter with Padilla:
"Whether he became angry or something else, I don't know... What I do know is that it is impossible that he would do something like that," Hamad, 88, said.
Earlier this week, Hasan asked Padilla his native language. When Padilla said it was Spanish, Hasan immediately went up to his apartment to get him a Spanish-language Quran. Padilla said Hasan also refused to reclaim his deposit and last month's rent, surrendering $400 that the major said should go to someone who needed it.cool, calm, religious". And that terrorist outfit he was wearing? A dead giveaway that he was bent on revenge against the infidels.
As Michael Yaki writes:"the implied presumption on Hasan appears to be terrorist unless proven otherwise." On every news report, the fact that he was a muslim is being highlighted over and over again. When a non-muslim offs a bunch of people, there's no mention of the killer's religious beliefs. Lost amid the hype painting Hasan with 'Islamo-fascist leanings' is the fact that "he had listed 'no religious preference' on his personnel records." His religion, by birth or choice, is irrelevant to ascertaining his motive. But instead it has become the noose for the media to strangle him with, and a focal point once more for American vengeance:
A top Republican congressional recruit said on Friday that the shooting at Ft. Hood, Texas yesterday by a solider allegedly sympathetic to suicide bombers shows that the "enemy is infiltrating our military."Undoubtedly they are, just not in the sense the congressman is implying. There is a well-documented history of the US military and intelligence structures carrying out experiments in mind programming on its soldiers and agents.
Allen West (R-Fla.), a retired military colonel who served as a commander at the Texas base, said in a release that Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan's attack may indicate a broader effort by Islamic extremists to recruit downtrodden members of the military.
"This enemy preys on downtrodden soldiers and teaches them extremism will lift them up," West said in a statement. "Our soldiers are being brainwashed."
Since the shooting(s) we've been treated to a breathtaking display of the Secret Team's chutzpah in regurgitating old lies. In their desperation to either cover up what really happened, or to spin an event that was completely staged from the get-go, they've leaked that Hasan "worshipped at a mosque led by a radical imam said to be a 'spiritual adviser' to three of the hijackers who attacked America on Sept 11, 2001" while the CIA have personally confessed to being aware "months ago that Hasan was attempting to make contact with people associated with al Qaeda."
Lest there be any remaining doubt as to the 'Fort Hood Massacre' being the work of covert operators, the Secret Team left their signature card (it's fun and games after all):
Soldiers who witnessed the rampage reported that the gunman shouted "Allahu Akbar!" - an Arabic phrase for "God is great!" - before opening fire, said Lt. Gen. Robert Cone, the base commander. He said officials had not yet confirmed that Hasan made the comment before the shooting spree."Officials had not yet confirmed" is a caveat applied to just about everything said about Nidal Hasan. Hearsay, you might call it. The military term is psy-op: stage an event, induce through baseless suggestions a version of it that you want people to believe, then vector their emotional response towards supporting your war.
There are many angles on this Guy Fawkes Halloween special the Secret Team threw for us. The day after the mutiny/covert operation another gunman, apparently a disgruntled former employee, opened fire at an office in Orlando, Florida, wounding 6 and killing 1 person. He was apparently schizophrenic and taking psychiatric drugs, "for control of the brain," according to his mother-in-law. This led Mike Adams of Natural News to highlight the disturbing correlation between SSRIs and other mind-altering drugs and the increase in frequency of violent behaviour. He further speculates that there is a possibility that Nidal Hasan self-medicated similar drugs, as around 16% of psychiatrists are thought to do so.
It's certainly never ceased to amaze us how such violent mass murders seem to arrive in clusters.
Following the coverage of the Fort Hood aftermath, we've noticed an emphasis on the 'fact' that the murder weapons were "privately owned". There are apparently strict rules about carrying weapons on army bases, so it's not as free-for-all as main street USA. Is this to deflect blame away from the military? A 'shout out' to America's right-wing gun culture to rail it further against the "feds coming to take our guns", perhaps?
Alternatively, Hasan was chosen and programmed to be the patsy in a conspiracy involving several assailants from the start. Once Hasan became the fall guy the reports of "friendly fire" at the SRC were buried, but on the day they were used to explain the high number of casualties and possibly to ward off concerns that a mutiny of sorts was underway. In this light, the following hypothetical scenario sounds plausible:
Two US privates 'John Smith' and 'John Henry' had been seeing a military psychiatrist major Hasan at Fort hood for a few weeks. Both privates said they were completely against the war of oppression in the middle east and would refuse to report for active duty if ordered to do so.Bear in mind that both sophistication and precedent exist for all these possibilities and more. The PTB go to great lengths to conceal their moves on the chessboard.
So the army put them both in therapy with Dr. Hasan. After more than five weeks of therapy both Christian privates were called to go to Afghanistan. Both privates warned they would not go and they would defend themselves with force if the army tried to force them to fight in a war they believed was morally wrong.
Yesterday fellow soldiers tried to surprize the two consciencious objectors but the privates were prepared and killed 12 soldiers who tried to force their way into the privates' barracks at Fort Hood.
During the mele their psychiatrist major Hasan, tried to talk the two privates into surrendering but he was shot twice.
Finally both privates were overcome and killed. Their psychiatrist major Hasan is in hospital recovering.'
Officials of the military have spun the story to make it seem the privates' doctor (who has a muslim sounding name) was the perpetraitor so that the public does not understand just how much resistance there is to the middle east war in the military rank and file.
Record numbers of troops were killed in the past month in Afghanistan. Public support for the "Good War" is at it's lowest since the Hunt for Osama bin Laden began all those years ago. As Americans digested the shock of events at Fort Hood, 5 British soldiers were killed by an "Afghan security guard" inside their base in Afghanistan. If in politics there is no such thing as a coincidence, and the military sphere is merely an extension of the political, then it's not difficult to see that the two events would be spun in a way favourable to the warmongerers.
The new-style of attack relies not on the suicide bomb, or the al-Qaeda adherence to massive casualties, but on the shock of a gunman, or a handful of gunmen, opening fire in a place where people felt safe and secure - the luxury hotel, the police base, the US Army camp.pretending (badly) to be Islamic jihadists. Pakistan was blamed for that stunt, but it transpired that the Mossad's paws were all over the scene. Given the sadistic love affair between the US and Israel I naturally wonder to what extent Israeli operatives may have been involved with the bloodbath at Fort Hood, a timely distraction from a certain Goldstone report which was being discussed at the UN, as well as the imprisonment of 23 CIA personnel in Italy for kidnapping and torture - the first and hopefully not the last time we see the CIA held to account. After months of "will he-won't he", a media spun illusion of 'high-level political debate', Obama has announced that he is giving the generals everything they want and adding another 40,000 troops into the warmix. The Secret team can reflect on another job well done: more Americans and Afghanis will meet a premature and violent death, but most importantly, the event keeps American minds fenced inward, perhaps now even less aware of the dangers surrounding them.
Lord West, the Security Minister, told a Commons committee last month that the prospect of such an attack in Britain was at the forefront of his mind. The minister said he and his team were "doing a lot of work" on "the Mumbai issue". He painted a bleak (and rather prophetic) picture of what might happen: "It is extremely difficult in an open society to stop there being initial casualties, if you have some men who have been trained to military standard, three or four of them, with relatively heavy weapons."
Now that Hasan has woken from his coma and begun talking, it will be interesting to see how the propaganda machine reinforces its image of him being the 'Islamic extremist lone gunman terrorist'. How can we verify that any statement he makes through the corporate press has not been made under duress? How soon before we hear him confess, "Yes, it was me, just me, I hate America for it's freedoms! Muslims, stand up and unite against the tyrants!" etc.
What fate awaits Nidal Malik Hasan?
Everybody knows what happened to Lee Harvey Oswald.