Communities Affected by Fort Hood

Friday, November 06, 2009

Details continue to emerge about the shooting at Fort Hood. Two communities have been affected in particular: military families and Muslim-Americans. We try to find common ground. Tom Tarantino, legislative associate at the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) and an Army Captain who returned from Iraq in 2006, discusses how a violent incident at a military base might affect life there for military families. And Hesham El-Meligy, a Muslim-American activist from Staten Island, discusses the incident and the reaction of his community.


Hesham El-Meligy and Tom Tarantino

Comments [44]

Chris Garvey from Amityville, NY

Re: Gerard from Brooklyn said: "who is qualified to determine who is qualified to carry a concealed firearm?"
There are more good people than bad in this world. If law disarms the good people, then violators get to outgun them.
"Is there enough data here to justify increasing concealed firearms...?"
Yes. Right-to-carry laws have decreased violent crime in 41 states.
Gun bans have increased gun violence in Australia, Britain and Washington DC.

Nov. 10 2009 09:29 AM

This has nothing to do with the pressures of the military. It has everything to do with this man, his connections (of which I'm sure there are some), and his brand of radical Islam. Of course, his religion was a factor, in the same way that fundamentalist Christians who bomb abortion clinics use religion to justify their actions. I'm getting tired of the Muslim community reacting by deflecting or adopting a defensive posture rather than by saying, "Hey, maybe the way some people are misinterpreting and practicing our religion is a problem--is OUR problem, and we must deal with it head on."

Nov. 06 2009 08:01 PM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

Here is a link to doctor Hasans profile at the Virginia Board of Medicine. Note under General Information he is located at the Darnall Army Medical Center, Ft Hood Texas.

He is certified in Osteopathy and Podiatry.

and *Self-Designated Practice" in Psychiatry.

Does that mean Dr. Hasan is NOT certified in Psychiatry?

We will be learning much more about this guy.

Nov. 06 2009 01:23 PM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

#38 Lori said...

"If he had kissed his crucifix before he started shooting, it wouldn't even be a topic of conversation"

Really? On WNYC? On the BBC? "The Takeaway"? On WBAI?

Nov. 06 2009 12:13 PM
the truth from bkny

I agree w/Lori #33 - there is no decompression given to the returning they are snapping BEFORE they leave??? Jeez!!

Nov. 06 2009 12:13 PM
perspective from VA

Lets get some perspective plz:
The US military is a killing machine.
This mans line of work was dealing with the excrement of the killing machine. Trying to make it smell like potpourri.
He became the killing machine.
This is a tragedy within a tragedy.

Nov. 06 2009 12:10 PM
Lori from Montclair, NJ

Ed from East Village:

If he had kissed his crucifix before he started shooting, it wouldn't even be a topic of conversation.

Nov. 06 2009 12:09 PM
Gerard from Brooklyn

My heart goes out to all those suffering loss at Ft. Hood. This dialogue is so important. I also want to know who is qualified to determine who is qualified to carry a concealed firearm? This guy was a psychiatrist and he cracked. You never really know who is going to crack do you? The military MP's and the Department of the Army Civilian Police were armed and took the guy down. Maybe another armed soldier could have done this faster with less loss of life? Possible..but we will never know. Is there enough data here to justify increasing concealed firearms to the "qualified" in the general population-not really. There are enough guns on the planet for people to do what they want with. Justified fear and anger drive the rationalization of your agenda. However,guns are not the real issue here. Our boundless capacity to alienate and dehumanize each other is the issue.

Nov. 06 2009 11:48 AM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

#32 nkbah said...
"Calls'em As I Sees'em, there's something very sick about you who wants to watch someone die "live and in color"".

I see your ire is only for "Calls'em As I Sees'em" and NOT the actions of Major Hasan.

Nov. 06 2009 11:44 AM
Ed from East Village

#33... Let's play politically correct pretend.

Nov. 06 2009 11:43 AM
Alvin from Manhattan

Hypocrisy! If this was a lone wolf, how about this case: A physician, who had treated a number of friends and neighbors for injuries from Muslim terrorist attacks, went beserk and shot a number of people in a nearby mosque. He was subdued and beaten to death. His name was Baruch Goldstein, and the event occurred in Hebron. It was universally condemned in Israel from the Prime Minister on down (except for a miniscule group of crazies), it and was similarly condemned by American Jewish groups. Yet, to this day, pro-Palestinian advocates bring this up as a hate crime that smears all Israelis. It's widely mentioned on college campuses as part of anti-Israel propaganda. My question to Muslims is: Was Baruch Goldstein a lone wolf who went beserk, or do you have a double standard: one for Muslims, another for everyone else?

Nov. 06 2009 11:42 AM
Lori from Montclair, NJ

I say buckle your seat belts, much more to come. This large military population returning with PTSD will be reflected in increased violence (domestic and otherwise), substance abuse, depression, homelessness, etc.

And, yes, the mental health professionals assigned to help them heal/cope will be vulnerable and, if not properly supported/supervised, they too will become traumatized.

I only hope that all those people with ribbon magnets on their cars will truly be willing to support their returning troops' needs rather than look away out of guilt and deny the damage done to humanity by war.

Nov. 06 2009 11:38 AM
nkbah from harlem

Calls'em As I Sees'em, there's something very sick about you who wants to watch someone die "live and in color".

Nov. 06 2009 11:33 AM
Sandra from Astoria, Queens

Whites are the dominant culture, so whenever they do something wrong one is not seen as indicative of the whole (look at Timothy McVeigh). But since minorities are "the other," the action of one is seen as representative of the entire race.

A lot of military people seem to be snapping (McVeigh again!)--would you blame the entire military for that? I'm sure the DC sniper is looked at as a black man first and a military man second, if at all.

Nov. 06 2009 11:31 AM
the truth from bkny

ANONYMOUS from QUEENS - if not snapped then are you saying this was planned? What are you saying? I heard he wanted OUT of the military as well...not that I trust the media.

Nov. 06 2009 11:29 AM
john from office

So we should leave them to live in their Sh-t holes

Nov. 06 2009 11:28 AM
Calls'em As I Sees'em from McLean, VA

The Major’s crime was clearly premeditated. Though I feel that part of all violent crime is due to insanity, this officer did have a cause - preventing US soldiers from killing fellow Muslims overseas.

Like many of his fellow Islamic terrorists, he was also a lowly coward, attacking unarmed people, like similar attacks in Bali, Madrid, London, NY, Israel and even among their own people in Iraq, Pakistan and Afghanistan. There is something very sick in a small but dangerous segment of the international Muslim community.

I hope that after his trial, the Army is allowed to show his execution live and in color for all to see justice at work.

Nov. 06 2009 11:27 AM
stefano from 11206

I am surprised that many are surprised. It happened before maybe on a smaller scale. There is even half of that Kubrick movie "Full Metal Jacket" that is about a soldier snapping.

And all these reports of fragging in the Viet Nam war.

It is possible that the prospect of being deployed caused some unbearable pressure on the shooter and snapped.

The fact that he survived allows to examine the causes, motivations behind this tragedy.

Nov. 06 2009 11:26 AM
the truth from bkny

Teasing about anything for any length of time will cause you to snap..on top of the fear of being deployed...a bad situation for everyone.

Nov. 06 2009 11:26 AM
TJ from Brooklyn

john from office # 18 -- that is NOT the problem. People in general - all people - tend to accept horrible means to justify ends. Look in the mirror: what do you suppose the invasion of Iraq and the torture at Abu Gharaib were about? Ends justifying means is what. Muslims can do without that sort of "westernization".

Nov. 06 2009 11:25 AM
Amy from Manhattan

What I'm most concerned about is the reports that there *were* indications that Maj. Hasan was having problems & apparently nothing was done. I have to wonder if this was related to the way troops w/PTSD & other psychological reactions are treated when they return.

Nov. 06 2009 11:24 AM
Don from manhattan

A relative, an avowed Christian, forwards around an email that has obviously gone around to many already, calling on us to remember the "Muslim" bombing of Pan Am Flight 103, Marine barracks in Lebanon, US embassies, the World Trade Center and so on. It asks for a boycott of a stamp to celebrate Eid.

How shall we answer this kind of email, this attitude or frame of mind? I believe this is germane to this discussion.

Nov. 06 2009 11:23 AM
Christopher Deignan from Middle Village

All this touchy feely, being a Muslim is nothing to do with what happened is all well and good but let's not be disingeuous here. Let's face it, the fact that this guy was a Muslim IS a factor without any shadow of a doubt. It does not mean we have to generalize from that fact but it is definitely a factor and we cannot bury our heads in the sand about it and in fact it's dangerous and irresponsible to do so.

Nov. 06 2009 11:23 AM
Chuck from Brooklyn

It's impossible to not consider Major Hasan's religion because he imparted it before his rampage.

He had also been reprimanded in the past for actions related to his beliefs.

Nov. 06 2009 11:22 AM
Fed Up in NJ from Summit, NJ

Also, what about the influence of the Christian right which is has been unchecked in the military?

Nov. 06 2009 11:22 AM
Ed from East Village

All of these posters are finding it very easy to pretend being a Muslim played no part in the man's actions. I wonder how they'll react when the inevitable happens on a NYC subway and the suspect is dressed in Muslim garb.

Nov. 06 2009 11:22 AM
Lori from Montclair, NJ

Vicarious trauma!

Nov. 06 2009 11:21 AM
john from office

The problem is that Islam, accepts the means to justify the ends.

Look at the Taliban, Hamas, PLO. It is a death cult, that will never be westernized.

Nov. 06 2009 11:20 AM

it's been comparatively overlooked that Hasan is a psychiatrist. given the reported incidence of PTSD in soldiers and the inconsistent treatment they receive post-deployment, Major Hasan's extreme stress as a soldier/mental health care provider should be explored.

Also, perhaps a future guest can contextualize this shooting within other acts of violence committed by soldiers after their returns home.

Nov. 06 2009 11:20 AM
Susan from Chatham NJ

What effect does the military's strong evangelistic groups have on this event or its aftermath?

Nov. 06 2009 11:19 AM
Susan from Chatham NJ

What effect does the military's strong evangelistic bent have on this event, or on its aftermath?

Nov. 06 2009 11:18 AM
anonymous from Queens

We DON'T know for sure yet that the shooter "snapped" psychologically. We DO know that he was already on authorities' radar because of his sentiments about the military, the war in Iraq and suicide bombers.

Nov. 06 2009 11:18 AM

Recently I heard a therapist talking about treating PTSD patients at Walter Reade (here's a video of the work they did: )

The technique they were using is helpful to therapist and patient alike, but the therapist talking about the experience was saying she could not have handled the work had she not been able to apply the same technique to herself.

An army shrink dealing with all the stress of soldiers!

Nov. 06 2009 11:16 AM
hjs from 11211

Tom Tarantino
any gays captain ?

Nov. 06 2009 11:14 AM
talk to me

The bigger part of the story that deserves commentary is that he is a psychiatrist! what does it take to break the person commissioned to help his comrades with their mental difficulties? What is the final toll that these wars will have on our families in terms of our mental stability!!!!!???

Nov. 06 2009 11:13 AM
dana from ny

this man (HUMAN BEING) was harassed, called "camel jockey". what do you think happened? the largest military base in the world, IN TEXAS. 2+2=4.

Nov. 06 2009 11:13 AM
Robert from NYC

This is not a Muslim problem, this is a human problem. The whole Muslim community should not be dragged into this nor dragged down by it. It is a very sad story and I feel more compassion for this man then any kind of hatred. I also sympathize with the families of the victims. It's again one of those situations where everyone is a victim whatever the degree nonetheless victims.

Nov. 06 2009 11:12 AM
Marco from New York

I really can't stand this type of cultural relativism as if the unease felt by the Muslim community in any way compares with the tragedies of the families of the victims.

Nov. 06 2009 11:11 AM
the truth from bkny

This is NOT about the Muslim "name" this is about the misfire in the brain of the person.

Nov. 06 2009 11:10 AM
hjs from 11211

what exactly does the military do (or not do ) to men to make them snap like this?
domestic violence in military families is up. there's that rapist/killer in ohio and the washington area sniper (both ex military)
and what does it say about the military psychology staff that they couldn't see a problem with one of there own??

Nov. 06 2009 11:07 AM
Calls'em As I Sees'em from McLean, VA

Great post by Chris - I salute you. Please post again and call in. Liberals have no idea about the bad consequences of their well meaning rules.

The experts agree that gun control works. Unfortunately the experts are Hitler, Stalin, Mao and Castro (the later two big favorites in the Obama admin). These experts all just happen to be mass murderers.

One of the first things the Obama admin tried to do when it took office was to control private gun ownership by members of the US military. The would be fascists immediately hit a stone wall. The Obama admin will voted out of office if tries to confiscate Americans’ firearms. Part of the national socialist health care fraud contemplates using such to do just that.

As to the tragedy at Fort Hood, clearly the Doctor was insane over his conflict with his Muslim religion and his duties as an officer, doctor and American. The fundamentalist Muslim won out in his case and in dozens others here and in Britain. There is a danger from a small portion of the Muslims in the west.

As to increased security, in the old days, all officers carried side arms. The armed services should return to this rule, down to Staff Sergeants. Other institutions like colleges, hospitals, (where many doctors already own and carry guns), even mass transit should also allow concealed carry by qualified members of these communities.

Many tragedies like Virginia Tech and the LIRR attack can be avoided not only by better mental health care but by more citizens with concealed carry permits.

The definitive study and book "More Guns, Less Crime” has already proved this fact beyond a shadow of a doubt, despite what WNYC and the rest of the liberal and mass media tell you.

Nov. 06 2009 10:58 AM
TJ from Brooklyn

My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families. This man's act has brought shame to my American Muslim community even though he appears to be a lone wolf more along the lines of the distrubed Korean man who murdered dozens at Virginia Tech. But he is still a traitor and should be punished with the utmost severity.

Nov. 06 2009 10:26 AM
Chris Garvey from Amityville, NY

I contend that the biggest mass murders are generally committed in gun-free zones.
Oddly enough, it seems from what I'm hearing so far, that the public areas of Fort Hood are gun free zones. The soldiers are not allowed to carry guns.

Gun-Free Zones Copr. 2000 C.Garvey permission granted to read on air or post:

The observation tower of the Empire State Building was a gun-free zone.

The Texas Restaurant, where Suzanna Gratia-Hupp watched her parents
and 21 others executed,
while her gun sat, as required by law, in her car,
was a gun-free zone.

COLUMBINE HIGH SCHOOL was a gun-free zone.

Long Island Railroad 5:33 to Hicksville,
was a gun-free zone,
for all except for crazy Colin Ferguson, alone.

Hitler's Germany, for all but government Nazis,
Was a gun-free zone.

Parts of the South were gun free zones,
But only for slaves.

East Timore was a gun-free zone.
And was helpless to resist Suharto's invasion,
And 25 years of Indonesian genocide.

The 767 Flights of Nine Eleven, from Boston to the World Trade Center, were gun-free zones.

The death toll of gun-free zones:
thousands, millions, and it accrues,

Massacres at shooting ranges, gun shows:
But that's not news.

Nov. 06 2009 10:18 AM

So just how many of these Bad Apples are there?

Nov. 06 2009 10:08 AM

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