• December 18, 2014

Carter wants answers from attorney general

Killeen congressman questioning decision to not classify Hasan as a terrorist

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Posted: Tuesday, March 19, 2013 4:30 am | Updated: 2:13 pm, Thu Jan 23, 2014.

Killeen’s congressman is demanding answers from U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder as to why Maj. Nidal Hasan has not been designated a terrorist.

U.S. Rep. John Carter, R-Round Rock, co-authored a letter to Holder on Friday asking if the Justice Department meddled with Fort Hood officials in order to avoid having Hasan classified as a terrorist.

“Fourteen people, including an unborn child, were killed by Major Nidal Hasan, a man that was known to have terrorist ties,” Carter said in an emailed statement. “This was a terrorist attack and it’s time to step up to the plate and give these forgotten warriors the respect and attention they deserve.”

Hasan, a 42-year-old Army psychiatrist, had ties to slain al-Qaida operative Anwar al-Awlaki before the Nov. 5, 2009, mass shooting on post. Survivors have testified that Hasan yelled “Allahu akbar” — Arabic for “God is great” — during the shooting.

Several victims of the Nov. 5, 2009, shooting contend that the Defense Department’s labeling of the incident as “workplace violence” has diminished the amount of benefits available to them.

A group of survivors and their families banded together in a federal lawsuit against the Army and Department of Defense for their failure to prevent the mass shooting.

Carter referenced comments from Secretary of the Army John McHugh in the letter before asking whether Holder or any other Justice Department officials gave advice to the Army about Hasan’s charges.

McHugh said officially declaring Hasan a terrorist would adversely affect his upcoming court-martial.

One of the letter’s co-authors will ask Holder the same questions during an upcoming congressional committee meeting should the attorney general refuse to answer, Carter stated.

U.S. Rep. Frank R. Wolf, R-W.Va., serves on a subcommittee that is slated to question Holder in mid-April.

Another view

Former 1st Cavalry Staff Judge Advocate Richard Rosen on Monday said labeling Hasan as a terrorist would likely have little impact on the upcoming trial.

“This guy was taking direction from Anwar al-Awlaki, whom we thought was enough of a threat to kill with drones,” said Rosen, currently a law professor at Texas Tech University. “Ultimately when you talk about the baseline of the crimes he has been alleged to have committed, (it would have) no impact at all.”

Hasan is charged with 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 counts of attempted premeditated murder. Jury selection is slated to begin May 29. The government is seeking the death penalty.

The government could have used terrorism as a factor in elevating Hasan’s charges to a capital offense. It chose to use a more conventional aggravator that he has been accused of multiple murders.

But despite the federal government’s aversion to the terrorist label, Fort Hood prosecutors have signaled they will refer to Hasan as a terrorist during his court-martial.

On Wednesday, the presiding Fort Hood court will hear testimony from Evan Kohlmann. Hasan’s lawyers have challenged the admissibility of Kohlmann’s testimony and a report he authored that calls Hasan a “home-grown terrorist.”

Rosen said the diverging approaches are “inconsistent.”

“It is interesting that the government will take that position considering the government as a whole will not,” Rosen said. “I think they serve two different purposes.”

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6 comments:

  • MamaLenore posted at 3:30 pm on Wed, Mar 20, 2013.

    MamaLenore Posts: 12

    I'm sure SFC Young (Bubba) doesn't quite understand what terroristic ties means. How could you only think this was done because he didn't want to deploy? Why make a statement by keeping his beard and saying it was for his religious purpose. If he still being paid as a soldier he should live by the same rules.

     
  • Bubba posted at 5:35 pm on Tue, Mar 19, 2013.

    Bubba Posts: 756

    There is no doubt that the accused conducted himself poorly while on AD, and clearly the accused should not have been retained, promoted or transferred, and there is much blame affixed to the chain of command at Walter Reed. this does not change the fact that there is no evidence connecting the accused to terrorism. Simple as that; it's a matter of law. I am not bitter at all, and it would be best if kept your suppositions and erroneous conclusions to yourself. what needs to happen is an interference-free court-martial, followed by a neat-as-you-please execution. The last thing we need is stupid self-serving politicians getting in the way. Terrorist attacks committed by terorists are terrorist attacks committed by terrorists. That's not what happened here. Attacks of this nature are acts of war. That's not what happened here.

     
  • Bubba posted at 5:28 pm on Tue, Mar 19, 2013.

    Bubba Posts: 756

    The act was not a terrorist act because the law says it is not. Simple as that. The FBI and CID LOOKED REAL HARD to make it a terrorist act and could not do it. There is no evidence to support your conclusion. Have a nice day.

     
  • I Am posted at 10:47 am on Tue, Mar 19, 2013.

    I Am Posts: 1

    Sir or Ma'am What was committed on Ft. Hood by the accused was without a terrorist act. This individual infiltrated our Armed Forces used His profession to advance His beliefs. The unfortunate occurrences happened when His Superior's ignored His conduct, promoted Him and moved Him to a new assignment to get Him out of the way,
    After serving 30 odd years in our Army 5 of which was on Ft Hood I personally observed how it became a practice for some senior commanders to pass the problem rather than deal with it.
    You sound bitter because some politician sends a strong message to those He believes is "driving the train" from behind the scenes to properly address this terrorist act as such.
    What do You call the attacks on our military while in base area when one or more terrorist attack them. I have always through they were referred to as terrorist attacks. Why than should this horrendous attack be anything different than a terrorist attacking American Service members on American Soil.

     
  • tsthouston posted at 10:18 am on Tue, Mar 19, 2013.

    tsthouston Posts: 2

    Bubba, if you are trying to state this wasn't terroristic, but work related, then I suppose that all those we lost in Irag and Afghanistan should be classified as work related as well. Our military was over there 'working', doing their job so wouldn't that in your mind relate to the same thing?

    The man is evil, a terrorist, and should be labeled as such.

    And no I wasn't on Ft. Hood at the time but my brother in law was as well as my nephew. I was about 30 miles away.

     
  • Bubba posted at 8:26 am on Tue, Mar 19, 2013.

    Bubba Posts: 756

    Because what happened was not a terrorist act. The accused apparently acted as he did to avoid deployment. No matter what he yelled or who he emailed, this act does not meet the definition of a terrorist act contained in Title18, United States Code. Further, declaring the accused a terrorist would make him an unlawful combatant-and require that he be sent to GITMO for military tribunal. Lastly, the congressman needs to shut his mouth, mind his own business, stay in his lane, stop interfering with the military justice system, and allow this trial to proceed without further interruption by him. These continued interruptions may well be used by the defense to force a mistrial, a delay, or even a dismissal of some charges due to your interference. There are your answers, Congressman. Now sit down and shut up. Oh, and for the record, I was on the Fort that day, inside HQ, 1CD.

     

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