Both left- and right-wing accounts of the mass murder at Ft. Hood are haunted by the specter of "political correctness."
Faced with a man reportedly yelling "Allahu Akbar!" and mowing down dozens of soldiers on a U.S. military base in Texas, journalists at mainstream news organizations and left-wing bloggers were nearly unanimous in promoting explanations that allowed them to ignore the suspect's religious and political beliefs.
In an article that was widely echoed in other newspapers and broadcasts, Erica Goode of the New York Times explained Sunday that the alleged killer, Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, was a victim of "post-traumatic stress disorder" even before he had "experienced the reality of war."
A front-page story in the Times on Tuesday, headlined "At Army Base, Some Violence is Too Familiar," provided more politically sanitized context for the killings by describing them as "another blow in an area that has been beset by crime and violence since the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq began" -- thereby blaming America's wars overseas for rising crime, violence and now the killings at Ft. Hood, while suggesting that Hasan's alleged conduct was not all that unusual.