Liberal Blogger Strays From The Path
Far be it from me to ever agree with Sean Hannity or Ollie North, but the question of whether or not Nidal Hassan should be considered a terrorist is a valid one. And it has nothing to do with whether or not he was in "operational contact" with radical Islam. It has only to do with his motivations.
There is a lot of speculation about what drove Hassan to attack the processing center at Fort Hood. There has been so much stress and violence surrounding Fort Hood, which Hsssan was deeply involved with as a psychiatrist, that it is very easy to believe that this had to do with his future deployment. If so, if his motivation for the shooting was that he just didn't want to go or was afraid of combat, then this is not terrorism. But as more and more information comes out about his radical views, it seems more likely that this was politically motivated, and if so then it might have been terrorism. I say might because there is a third element to terrorism that is not discussed.
Take the case of an assassin shooting an abortion provider. He may have been motivated to do so by Bill O'Reiley or by Operation Rescue, but he has no operation contact with him. Yet he is considered a terrorist. His terrorist act was politically motivated. But if it was just anger would it still be considered terrorism? The act of killing an abortion doctor is more than just politically motivated, it also has a purpose: to frighten other doctors away from performing abortions. Terrorism, despite how it is described in the news, is *never* "senseless". It is always part of a plan. It is a form of communication meant to terrorize people into submission, to get them to stop doing something the terrorist feels is wrong.
If Hassan, even though politically motivated, was simply lashing out in anger was it still terrorism?
I don't know, but if they want to call him a terrorist on Fox that's ok by me. I don't feel inclined to cut this guy any slack. This much I do know: when I read today that Hassan is paralyzed from the waist down as a result of being shot, my response was "good." After all, it was his job to counsel people with just that type of issue. Now maybe he can counsel himself.