More than five years after U.S. Army major Nidal Hasan gunned down 13 soldiers and wounded more than 30 others at Fort Hood, Texas, victims finally received Purple Heart medals in an April 10 ceremony at the base. The long delayed award of these medals, however, does not bring closure to this issue.
Hasan, an Army psychiatrist, had been emailing terrorist Anwar al-Awlaki about the prospect of killing infidel American soldiers, and the "Soldier of Allah," as he called himself, did everything but take out an ad on the Super Bowl to announce his jihadist intentions. Government agents were aware of his communications but did nothing to stop him.
President Barack Obama's first response to Hasan's mass murder was brief, low key, and failed to ascribe any responsibility to Islamic terrorism. "We cannot fully know what leads a man to do such a thing," the president said. Such breathtaking denial soon became official policy. The Obama administration's Department of Defense issued Protecting the Force: Lessons from Fort Hood, which contains not a single reference to jihad or jihadists. Its only mention of "Islamic" is an endnote reference to "Countering Violent Islamic Extremism," a 2007 FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin.