Touchy-feely Ft. Hood Report won’t help protect anyone

The report issued earlier this month by the Department of Defense blue-ribbon panel tasked with assessing the November 5, 2009 mass shooting at Ft. Hood, is — or ought to be – an embarrassment to our government.  If this report is used as the basis for developing policies and programs to prevent future such incidents, then we’ve failed before we’ve even begun.

The first thing that strikes the reader of this report is the cover itself; which, in a sense, says it all.  The cover does not depict a military scenario that might illustrate a military response to an armed threat against a military installation or personnel.  Nor is it a straight-forward, official-looking report cover as found on most government documents. It is instead a touchy-feely picture of two hands grasping each other’s wrists, vaguely similar to the stylized logo depicting two clasped hands used by the Boys & Girls Clubs of America.  We “protect the force” against a crazed mass murderer by joining hands and singing “Kumbaya” seems to be the message.  The actual contents of the report bear out this initial impression.

The report is 80 pages in length, including 26 pages of appendices.  Nary a single page contains any truly relevant and substantive steps that could be taken to “protect the force” against a gunman with a pair of handguns entering an auditorium full of unarmed recruits, and being permitted to methodically empty several clips of bullets into the bodies of dozens of innocent individuals (killing 13).

This is not to say that the report fails to state the obvious; it does – more than once.  For example, at page 27, it reaches the startling conclusion that in order to counter “the internal threat” of a murderous soldier shooting his or her colleagues, we must “focus on exhibited behavior,” and meet potential threats by taking a “comprehensive approach.”  Boy, that’s a real eye-opener of a conclusion; almost as earth-shattering as the conclusion four pages later, that in order to detect “a trusted insider’s intentions” one must observe him or her.

Interestingly, on the same page, the report’s authors cite no less an institution to be employed as a model for how to avoid the threat of an internal shooter, than the U.S. Postal Service.  I’m not making this up; it’s there in black and white.

As if there were not enough bureaucratic roadblocks already in place to hamper identifying and meeting threats such as that posed by Maj. Hasan, the Ft. Hood report appears to recommend even more bureaucracy in order to improve “information sharing.”  Perhaps the creation of a military Directorate of National Intelligence, which has performed so well in the civilian sector since its creation in 2005, is what the report’s authors have in mind.

It has been well-publicized already that the report fails to directly address the fact that Maj. Hassan obviously and demonstrably was a radicalized Muslim.  Yet, in a classic example of military gobbledygook, the report does address the issue of religion, but in a context that has nothing whatever to do with the problem at hand.  Page 44 offers the following “finding”:  “The lack of published guidance for religious support in mass casualty incidents hampers integration of religious support to installation emergency management plans.” 

One area in which the report could have provided a direct and meaningful recommendation would be to address why, on a major US Army base, there were no armed personnel anywhere near where the incident occurred, and who could have shot Hasan much earlier than in fact occurred during his rampage.  It is at page 32 that the report reveals this major failing of US military policy as relates to dealing with a gunman on a military installation – the deliberate disarming of law-abiding military personnel on and off military bases within the United States.  How can we “protect the force” when we deliberately disarm the force?

38 comments Add your comment

Police Line Don't Cross

January 25th, 2010
6:34 am

We fail to recognize the danger of Islam (i.e., the Netherlands) at our peril.

“In the seventh century of the Christian era a wandering Arab, of the lineage of Hagar, the Egyptian, combing the powers of transcendent genius with the preternatural energy of a fanatic and the fraudulent spirit of an imposter, proclaimed himself as a messenger from heaven, and spread desolation and delusion over an extensive portion of the earth.”

“Adopting, from the sublime conception of the Mosaic law, the doctrine of one omnipotent God, he connected indissolubly with it the audacious falsehood, that he was himself his prophet and apostle. Adopting from the new revelation of Jesus, the faith and hope of immortal life, and of future retribution, he humbled it to the dust by adapting all the rewards and sanctions of his religion to the gratification of the sexual passion.”

“He poisoned the sources of human felicity at the fountain, by degrading the condition of the female sex, and the allowance of polygamy; and he declared undistinguishing and exterminating war as part of his religion against all the rest of mankind. The essence of his doctrine was violence and lust; to exalt the brutal over the spiritual part of human nature.”

“Between these two religions, thus contrasted in the characters, a war of more than twelve hundred years has already raged. That war is yet flagrant; nor can it cease but by the extincture of that imposture, which has been permitted by Providence to prolong the degeneracy of man. While the merciless and dissolute are encouraged to furnish motives to human action, there never can be peace on earth and good will toward men. The hand of Ishmael will be against every man, and every man’s hand against him.”

John Adams, 1830

meinpvb

January 25th, 2010
8:34 am

I couldn’t agree more. This isn’t a sensitivity issue – it is an issue of us vs. them. We didn’t start this fight but we have to be prepared. The simple fact is that radical Muslims want to hurt and destroy us and no amount of skirting around the issue will change this. Short of putting his plan on facebook, Major Hassan gave out numerous hints and clues of what he had in store. To imply in any way that we as Americans need to be “more sensitive” is hogwash. Let’s get the facts out there and please God have no more events like this occur.

cliff

January 25th, 2010
8:45 am

police line,

You grabbed a bad quote there. John Adams died July 4, 1826 (50 years to the day from the signing of the Declaration of Independence and a few hours after the death of Thomas Jefferson on the same day).

It is possible that his son, always identified for clarity as John Quincy Adams, wrote that. It is possible that 2nd president John Adams wrote it at some other earlier time.

It is also possible that this is a quote like the Ted Nugent diatribe that has had George Carlin’s name attached to it and been sent around the internet.

This is ocming from somebody who believes that failure to address the Islamic question is part of the problem with the approach ot Fort Hood.

Sunny Daze

January 25th, 2010
8:48 am

I heard this feller was trained by Gary Coleman.

Bubba

January 25th, 2010
9:04 am

Police Line’s quote was from Q. Adams.

Churchill understood too:

How dreadful are the curses which Mohammedanism lays on its votaries! Besides the fanatical frenzy, which is as dangerous in a man as hydrophobia in a dog, there is this fearful fatalistic apathy. The effects are apparent in many countries. Improvident habits, slovenly systems of agriculture, sluggish methods of commerce, and insecurity of property exist wherever the followers of the Prophet rule or live.

A degraded sensualism deprives this life of its grace and refinement; the next of its dignity and sanctity. The fact that in Mohammedan law every woman must belong to some man as his absolute property, either as a child, a wife, or a concubine, must delay the final extinction of slavery until the faith of Islam has ceased to be a great power among men.

Individual Moslems may show splendid qualities, but the influence of the religion paralyzes the social development of those who follow it.

No stronger retrograde force exists in the world. Far from being moribund, Mohammedanism is a militant and proselytizing faith. It has already spread throughout Central Africa, raising fearless warriors at every step; and were it not that Christianity is sheltered in the strong arms of science, the science against which it had vainly struggled, the civilization of modern Europe might fall, as fell the civilization of ancient Rome.

sam

January 25th, 2010
9:21 am

bob, once again you are oversimplifying the problem and offering no solutions….

Nobody reads long posts

January 25th, 2010
9:36 am

What I heard, speaking of the USPO, in that the post office is the destination of many long-time military personnel who want to continue working for the gov’t even after the military no longer WANTS THEM. When they’re shifted to the USPO, ALL RETIREMENT OBLIGATIONS OF THE MILITARY ARE THEN SHIFTED TO THE PO, TOO. That’s the heart of the PO budget problems, and the PO, as beneficiaries of unwanted military long-timers, has the “going postal” issues.

neoCarlinist

January 25th, 2010
9:43 am

it’s odd (not really) that the report refers to the USPS and the Postal Service’s history of shooters. this is not a “war on terrorism” issue. how can the DoD (or any government agency) be expected to wage war on terrorists if it does not have a common sense “force protection” (employee) policy? the Fort Hood shooter practically paraded around the workplace waving red flags. AND, theo-politics aside, if half of what has been reported about his professionalism and on the job performance are true, the Army might want to review its “promotion” policy. people rant on this blog about “unions” and how incompetent and under-performing dregs cannot be fired, and this guy was a Major in the United States Army? c’mon. Bob is correct, if the solution to this problem is to develop a new layer of bureacracy (the fact that a “blue ribbon committee” had to be formed to “spitball” the issue says it all), it’s just a matter of time before the next “fragging” incident. oh wait, fratricide has been a part of the miliatry since there was a military. “blaming” some cleric in Yemen or “radical Islam” is a little more than current events driven disinformation. the VA Tech shooter and the Columbine shooters were not “radicalized” Muslims.

Chris Broe

January 25th, 2010
9:46 am

All soldiers know that accidental discharge kills. That’s why war is always a final opt: it’s dangerous having a bunch of guys fumbling around with ordnance. Nothing changes. The Oregon trail is marked with the countless graves of accidental discharge victims who thought they saw an indian and just grabbed their loaded rifle.

Guns just have a way of goin’ off for no reason. That’s why the no-guns-allowed rule exists on army bases.

Bob Barr cant even protect his own readers and commenters against the hatespeak, death wishes and abuses from the visiting Bookman trolls so he has ZERO credibility about protecting our troops on our bases.

DAVID: AJC Truth Detector

January 25th, 2010
9:47 am

BOB::;……THE MILITARY BRASS….will protect itself…….CAREERs are on the line….GENERALs are not going to take blame for Political Correctness..thus we get a WHITE WASH of the entire incident……DID YOU EXPECT ANYTHING MORE-????

El Jefe

January 25th, 2010
9:57 am

Was this report done by professionals? Professional whats?

Sounds more like a 4th grade teacher telling her/his students a nice story.

For some reason, it wouldn’t make much of a police report, an after action report or a site report.

More progressive intrusion into places they should never be. – our defense – our self-defense – our national defense.

Sunny Daze

January 25th, 2010
9:57 am

This feller was a shrink. Could you imagine a counseling session with him?

DAVID: AJC Truth Detector

January 25th, 2010
9:57 am

LORD BOB……Did anyone get blamed…..or fired for the Panty Hose Bomber—NO….

El Jefe

January 25th, 2010
10:00 am

Chris Broe,

Do you live inside the perimeter?

“Guns just have a way of goin’ off for no reason.” – what garbage.

Unless a firearm is damaged, a weapon will not go off for no reason. It always takes a reason, a finger(or other body appendage) on the trigger is the main one – at least in 99.999% of the cases.

Rafe Hollister

January 25th, 2010
10:21 am

Once again common sense has been abandoned in a flurry of Gov gobbledy gook. If some one in the Armed Forces does not appear to be with the team and behind the efforts, they need to be interviewed/ interrogated about their attitude. If doubts exist place them under some survaillance or discharge them. All terrorists are Muslim so all Muslims in the force should be interviewed about their feelings toward the war. Libs will go crazy, so what’s new. It is better than internment camps like FDR preferred.

Rafe Hollister

January 25th, 2010
11:04 am

Bob, concentrate of your day job. Comments are piling up here like fried chicken at a hobo convention.

Fred Scanling

January 25th, 2010
11:13 am

This is an excellent start. Please continue your thoughts by saying what the report should have contained. We can’t solve the problem unless we define what it is.

BS Aplenty

January 25th, 2010
12:07 pm

…the VA Tech shooter and the Columbine shooters were not “radicalized” Muslims.

Nor was either related to a larger Muslim terrorist conspiracy.

I somewhat understand McVeigh’s anger at government bungling (a gracious term) at Waco and elsewhere, but I loathe his particular solution to the problem. Ultimately, McVeigh was found guilty, smoked and buried.

I wish the same to all al Qaeda terrorists.

Bubba

January 25th, 2010
12:35 pm

I bet I’m the only one on here who knows who Rafe Hollister was! Aside from the guy posting as him, of course.

neoCarlinist

January 25th, 2010
12:37 pm

BS applenty, agreed, but there were “red flags” before the Columbine and VA Tech shootings. the Islam connection at Ft. Hood is but one of the (many) “red flags”. if the goal of the report was to “win the war on terrorism” or smoke out “al Qeada cells in the US military” so be it. as I see it, the shooter’s motives are secondary to the “motives” of the DoD brass (as reflected by DoD security policies and procedures – or lack thereof. ALL crimes (even acts of terrorism) require both a MOTIVE and the OPPORTUNITY. are Americans upset because this guy was a “radicalized Muslim who wanted jihad” or are we concerned about the fact that 13 soldiers preparing for deployment were gunned down by an officer who had repeatedly expressed his MOTIVE? AND all of this occurred on a post 9/11, Department of Homeland Security Army base? interesting you cite the McVeigh case. did not his defense team allude to a possible “Muslim/Terrorist” connection? Like McVeigh, Hassan should be tried, convicted and sentenced to death.

Jefferson

January 25th, 2010
1:00 pm

Freedom means you have to take chances with the natives and the imports.

mike

January 25th, 2010
1:29 pm

Interesting how old Bob has now become an authority on Muslim behavior. I think he left out the facts how the US, Britain and every other large country in this world went into those middle eastern countries to manipulate governments, force overthrows, asassinate people and generally put in place folks who they thought leaned towards our own policies. After all these years it has backfired and now this is what you have. Try looking at that movie about the Texas congressman Charlie Wilson’s war. While he is smoking his cigar for mission accomplished at the end of the movie, this whole ordeal starts from there. If Bob wants to know about the military, try putting the comic books down and try strapping on a pair of the sandboots and maybe you might learn something.

Hillbilly Deluxe

January 25th, 2010
1:33 pm

Sounds like psycho-babble to me.

Ric

January 25th, 2010
2:34 pm

Why attack the messenger? Perhaps we should all be raising hell at those in control in DC.

Bob's A Cherry Picker

January 25th, 2010
2:47 pm

Hi Bob,

More fine cherry picking today. Personally, I’m interested in why exactly the military sees fit to disarm soldiers on military bases. This was a suprise to me, but my guess is that there’s a reason.

Can you look into that and report back? I bet that whatever the reason, it was a military-bureaucratic one and not a federal-political one.

Police Line Do Not Cross

January 25th, 2010
3:47 pm

Cliff:

re: my 6:34am

You are correct ……… it was John Quincy Adams ……….. the point is ….. he’s right on!

What do you think about the prophetic wisdom of his thoughts?

william

January 25th, 2010
4:07 pm

Real history has been lost by the rewriting of history. I blame the progressive liberal because the founders of it proclaimed the need for it. It is so surprising we can find actual comments of our forefathers due the liberal educators. They simpley tweak it to read as they want it.

Bob's A Cherry Picker

January 25th, 2010
4:11 pm

Hi Bob,

So I was able to answer my own question…you can do some extra journalism on this if you wish.

I spoke with a friend of mine who was actually an Army MP. He told me that the disarming soldiers on bases thing is a function of safety. In essence, the more armed people you have walking around a given environment, the higher the probability that an accident will ensue. It’s a statistical certainty.

At some point, the military made a decision that the statistical certainty of personnel being injured via accidental discharges from widely distributed weapons on bases was much greater than the statistical anomoly that occurred at Ft. Hood. You can’t predict if/when someone will do something like that, but you can predict how many accidental discharges will happen in a given population.

The same thing can be said for the Va Tech situation, but with the odds of an accident being much greater: the comination of youth, alcohol and lack of training would be deadly in that environment. Not to mention the likely scenairo that a well meaning bystander with a weapon who intervenes could himself be mistaken for a criminal by first responders.

These are the kinds of things that you pretty much routinely leave out of your reporting. It’s why you’re a Cherry Picker. You just select the items from the shelf that help you make your argment, and either disregard or just make fun of the rest.

william

January 25th, 2010
4:15 pm

The report on the Ft Hood islamic attack surely proves my above comment. Liberals will tweak it to sound nothing like it is. Before too many months pass, another report will come out blaming the American soldier. I am waiting for it patiently. I know it will come.

Police Line Do Not Cross

January 25th, 2010
4:19 pm

william:

Sadly, you are correct. Political correctness run amok and we ignore it at our peril.

neoCarlinist

January 25th, 2010
4:21 pm

wiliam… “real history” has been re-written by both sides. the American narrative has been “tweaked” more times than the Bible. but editorial license aside, what does accurate reporting of what was said, or what was written 50, 150 or 250 years ago matter in 2010 (beyond the History Channel types who are fascinated with Nostradamus)? here’s one for you, “if you tell a lie enough times, it becomes the truth”.

Bob's A Cherry Picker

January 25th, 2010
4:29 pm

Willilam:

I took a peek at the report’s authors. Which ones are the liberals? I can’t tell. Is the military bureaucracy liberal?

Thks.

L Dodd

January 25th, 2010
6:13 pm

For as long a political groups in the US persist in using religion to agitate certain sectors of the population, political correctness will render the US incapable of winning any war against others who also use religion as a political power tool. Religion as government is the opposite of freedom–evidence: Saudi Arabia, where women are property and school girls are permitted to burn to death rather than be permitted to be outdoors without a proper head covering; also, the tribal regions of Pakistan, where little girls are sold into “marriage” to pay debts. The religious “follower” class in the US that votes on “values” issues to the substantial financial detriment of the working class–to which most belong– seem incapable of seeing that they are being used and/or are unwilling to even consider that the politicians that trumpet “values” to gain their votes are insincere because they are brainwashed from childhood to not question anything involving their religion. Politicians of all ilk use religion, but the Republicans, who purportedly want to strengthen freedom, do the most damage to freedom–on a global scale–by using religion so very much more effectively. The shooting at Fort Hood is one of their chickens in this pan come home to roost.

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Bob Barr and Roscoe Ellis, Dana Johnson. Dana Johnson said: RT @bobbarr: Barr Code: Touchy-feely Ft. Hood Report won’t help protect anyone http://bit.ly/7ByrbA [...]

Hank Williams Jr.

January 25th, 2010
7:38 pm

I’ll tell you what we do. We execute him on tv, then we run out the rest of these foreiners who we think are a threat to our country .
Time to take back AMERICA.

Christopher D. Osborn

January 26th, 2010
7:19 am

Rafe Hollister, you are wrong, not all terrorists are Muslims. In fact, most people who kill and /or terrorize others within the United States are not Muslim, simply by the fact that most people in the United States are not Muslim.

If we put surveillance on all Muslims, then we might as well put surveillance or all young poor black men, another group of people whom often kill and terrorize others. While we’re at it, we should say that all white males, who are NOT otherwise in an adult homosexual relationship, should be outlawed from being anywhere near children – not even their own children, because 99% of child molesters are indeed white males who are either single or in a heterosexual relationship. In fact, serial killers, I might add, meet the same description as most child molesters. Heck, the vast majority of human beings who commit violent crime are adult males, why don’t we just lock ourselves up and give the key to the women of society?

Yes, that particular man showed signs of being a radical and should have been watched more carefully. Yes, there should be armed guards at all military bases. Yes, people who have shown incompetence at their job should be fired – at least after re-training as been tried and failed.

No, we don’t need to throw away time, effort, money, and our liberties by giving special care to watching over large racial or religious groups.

Bill Mcniff

January 26th, 2010
3:01 pm

Fix the situation by disallowing Muslims to serve in the armed forces. Allow service members to bear arms on post (& offpost). The Swiss even take their firearms home when not on active duty.

Hank Williams Jr.

January 26th, 2010
7:07 pm

Set em free and let the dogs track em and then we give em a clip of my 45.
That’ll put a stop to setting em up in ahotel suite type prison.
No tv, radio or any type of entertaining them . Six months, run em through the court procedure,outta here, PERIOD.