The United States of America is in shock and the prayers of America go to the families of the victims of the Fort Hood, Texas shootings. Twelve are dead and over thirty are wounded.
The news reports have been fluid about the incident, as they often are after such events. Various reports had multiple shooters. Then, just one shooter, who was dead. By publication of this post, the shooter was identified as Army psychiatrist Major Malik Nadal Hasan, who was wounded but alive.
The motivations for Major Hasan's horrific attack on innocent people is not officially known. Rumors and reports are rampant. Hasan's Islamic faith has rung alarm bells among the non-politically correct. There are reports that Hasan had problems with the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and did not want to be deployed to that region. There are other reports about Hasan allegedly making comments sympathetic to Islamic terrorists. Hasan's cousin has made clear that Hasan's family are Americans and are in shock. He offered sympathy to the victims.
It will take a few days for the rumors to shake out. During that time, it is important that the focus of our prayers be for the families of those lost and for those injured.
Then, when the mourning is over and the recovery is starting, it will be time for truthful answers to tough questions. Forget the political and religious aspects for a moment, how did the Army create an environment in which one of its psychiatrists could be capable of such an act? Think on it. An Army psychiatrist is privy to the thoughts and emotions of American soldiers at their weakest. How did the Army allow someone who apparently had such hate (sane or insane) for American soldiers to be in such a position?
Of lesser importance, but important, who benefits from the act and how did Hassan's alleged views against the War on Terror factor into the Fort Hood incident?
The last question might open VUI to claims of being conspiracy nuts or bigoted. So be it. Someone has to ask, why was this done, and in asking why, who benefited from troops being attacked at an American Army fort that was about to deploy troops to the war.
The demand for the answers to the above questions will be strong and the answers will come in time. America needs to be calm, determined, and methodical in finding those answers. There should be no political correctness, no hot headed rushes to judgments, just open investigating and frankness. For now, though, pray for the folks at Fort Hood. May God comfort them. We are all Army today.