Hasan Didn't "Snap." He Was a Jihadi

Hasan Didn't "Snap." He Was a Jihadi

Hasan Didn't "Snap." He Was a Jihadi

The XX Factor
What Women Really Think
Nov. 10 2009 5:10 PM

Hasan Didn't "Snap." He Was a Jihadi

Dorothy Rabinowitz in the Wall Street Journal today has a bracing piece about the almost surreal disconnection between what’s increasingly clear about the Ft. Hood killer, Maj. Nidal Hasan, and what officials and some commentators seem unable to acknowledge. As she writes: "It was an act of terrorism by a man with a record of expressing virulent, anti-American, pro-jihadist sentiments. All were conspicuous signs of danger his Army superiors chose to ignore." She quotes Army Chief of Staff Gen. George Casey Jr. as saying, ""This terrible event would be an even greater tragedy if our diversity becomes a casualty." As Mona Charen points out, the idea of a witch hunt is false and dangerous. Surely the general doesn't mean that in our quest for diversity in the military, we embrace fanatics in our midst. Rooting them out has to be to the benefit of the brave, patriot Muslims who serve. Ralph Peters makes the larger point that, "By protecting the fanatics, we betray the peaceful majority of our Muslim citizens, leaving them afraid to speak out, since the feds shield the fanatics in charge of their mosques and communities."

According to a medical school classmate, Hasan repeatedly expressed seditious views and-in violation of his military oath-said, "I hold the Shariah, the Islamic Law, before the United States Constitution." Hasan had no problem loudly proclaiming his enemy is the United States. But for many it’s more comfortable to look away from his religious beliefs for an alternate theory of why he "snapped," instead of saying our enemy is militant Islam. Rabinowitz ends chillingly: "It has taken Maj. Hasan, and the fantastic efforts to explain away his act of bloody hatred, to bring home how much less capable we are of recognizing the dangers confronting us than we were even before September 11."

Emily Yoffe is a contributing editor at the Atlantic.