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Sunday, November 08, 2009 

NBC: Obama showed insensitivity following shooting

NBC Chicago writes that Barack Obama showed an alarming amount of insensitivity following the tragedy on Thursday at Fort Hood when Malik Nidal Hasan murdered 13 people in cold blood:
After news broke out of the shooting at the Fort Hood Army post in Texas, the nation watched in horror as the toll of dead and injured climbed. The White House was notified immediately and by late afternoon, word went out that the president would speak about the incident prior to a previously scheduled appearance. At about 5 p.m., cable stations went to the president. The situation called for not only his trademark eloquence, but also grace and perspective.

But instead of a somber chief executive offering reassuring words and expressions of sympathy and compassion, viewers saw a wildly disconnected and inappropriately light president making introductory remarks. At the event, a Tribal Nations Conference hosted by the Department of Interior's Bureau of Indian affairs, the president thanked various staffers and offered a "shout-out" to "Dr. Joe Medicine Crow -- that Congressional Medal of Honor winner." Three minutes in, the president spoke about the shooting, in measured and appropriate terms. Who is advising him?

Anyone at home aware of the major news story of the previous hours had to have been stunned. An incident like this requires a scrapping of the early light banter. The president should apologize for the tone of his remarks, explain what has happened, express sympathy for those slain and appeal for calm and patience until all the facts are in. That's the least that should occur.
Maybe if Obama were smart, he'd resign from his post, and he could certainly dismiss any advisers who told him to respond in the incredibly irresponsible way he did.

The AP Wire runs another article about this case that tells how some saw trouble ahead with Hasan, yet nothing was done:
FORT HOOD, Texas (AP) - In retrospect, the signs of Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan's growing anger over the U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan seem unmistakable. But even people who worried his increasingly strident views were clouding his ability to serve the U.S. military could not predict the murderous rampage of which he now stands accused.

In the months leading to Thursday's shooting spree that left 13 people dead and 29 others wounded, Hasan raised eyebrows with comments that the war on terror was "a war on Islam" and wrestled with what to tell fellow Muslim solders who had their doubts about fighting in Islamic countries.

"The system is not doing what it's supposed to do," said Dr. Val Finnell, who complained to administrators at a military university about what he considered Hasan's "anti-American" rants. "He at least should have been confronted about these beliefs, told to cease and desist, and to shape up or ship out."

Finnell studied with Hasan from 2007-2008 in the master's program in public health at the military's Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Md., where Hasan persistently complained about perceived anti-Muslim sentiment in the military and injected his politics into courses where they had no place.

"In retrospect, I'm not surprised he did it," Finnell said of the shootings. "I had real questions about what his priorities were, what his beliefs were."
A soldier who mouths off with the kind of garbage that Hasan did should raise suspicion and concern, and should be dishonorably discharged from the army, where his anti-American views do not belong (note how the AP is determined to make it sound as though he weren't a Chomskyite, which is probably to be expected of such an awful news division).

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