MORE DOTS THAT WEREN'T CONNECTED – AT 6:20 P.M. ET: In our recent focus on the Christmas-day bomber, we diverted our eyes from the Fort Hood case, in which a terrorist attack actually succeeded. Some 13 Americans died, and there would have been more had it not been for the heroism of security people.
Now we learn that there were ample warnings about Major Hasan, the Fort Hood shooter and budding jihadist:
WASHINGTON – In late December 2004, one of the officers overseeing Army Maj. Nidal Hasan's medical training praised him in an official evaluation as a qualified and caring doctor who would be an asset in any post.
But less than a week later, a committee at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center that oversees student performance met behind closed doors to discuss serious concerns about Hasan's questionable behavior, poor judgment and lack of drive.
Disconnects such this were a familiar pattern throughout Hasan's lengthy medical education in the Washington area, according to information gathered during an internal Pentagon review of the shooting rampage at Fort Hood, Texas, and obtained by The Associated Press.
The review has not been publicly released, but the emerging picture is one of supervisors who failed to heed their own warnings about an officer ill-suited to be an Army psychiatrist, according to the information.
As Hasan's training progressed, his strident views on Islam became more pronounced as did worries about his competence as a medical professional. Yet his superiors continued to give him positive performance evaluations that kept him moving through the ranks and led to his eventual assignment at Fort Hood...
...What remains unclear is why Hasan would be advanced in spite of all the shortcomings. That is likely to be the subject of a more detailed accounting by the Defense Department.
COMMENT: We should not accept any report, or any so-called "accounting," unless the subject of political correctness is dealt with forthrightly and completely.
The key question: Were Army promotion boards so intimidated by the atmosphere of political correctness that's been imposed on the armed forces that they were afraid to flag Hasan and even recommend that he be detached from the service?
Any decent report will answer that question.
January 11, 2010