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CoolHandCox
11-13-2009, 03:40 PM
Are the actions of Major Hasan terrorism? Why or why not?

janeslogin
11-13-2009, 04:07 PM
The US marine who beat up the Greek Orthodox Priest because he looked like a Muslim was a terrorists. I don't know about the Fort Hood shooter.

CoolHandCox
11-13-2009, 04:20 PM
The US marine who beat up the Greek Orthodox Priest because he looked like a Muslim was a terrorists. I don't know about the Fort Hood shooter.

Not agreeing or disagreeing, but why is the Marine a terrorist?

I kept the OP broad to get replies like yours. So that's good, but why do you consider one a terrorist, and not the other.

This_Just_In...
11-13-2009, 04:29 PM
Main Entry: ter·ror·ism
Function: noun
Date: 1795
: the systematic use of terror especially as a means of coercion

I don't really see how the crime of terror applies to a lone suicidal shooter, since what could he have been trying to coerce? On the other hand, a school yard bully threatening injury if they don't get lunch money could be considered a terrorist.
A war on terrorism makes as much sense as a war on drugs or a war on pickpocketing. They are all crimes that can never be defeated and it only takes one person to start it up again.

furt
11-13-2009, 04:59 PM
I actually don't think so. To me, terrorism involves the intentional targeting of civilians; since this was a military base, I don't think "Terrorism" is apt. I lean toward either

1) Nut job
2) Guerilla jihadist

or, most likely

3) both.

OTOH, I do think he's also a traitor and should be charged with treason.

CoolHandCox
11-13-2009, 05:05 PM
Main Entry: ter·ror·ism
Function: noun
Date: 1795
: the systematic use of terror especially as a means of coercion

I don't really see how the crime of terror applies to a lone suicidal shooter, since what could he have been trying to coerce?

What if it comes to light that he was dissatisfied with the US war/presence in Afghanistan and he was trying to influence the United States to pull out.

On the other hand, a school yard bully threatening injury if they don't get lunch money could be considered a terrorist.

According to that definition, a school yard bully would definitely be a terrorist, which is silly. On the other hand, there are other definitions of terrorism in which a school yard bully would not be because they require the person's actions to influence the Government.

Surely there are people who can justifiably be terrorists, but how do you define them to not let in school yard bullys, or not keep out people who may be actual terrorist's. I'm sure some lobbyist's might be considered a terrorist under the "influence Gov't by coercion" definition.

John Mace
11-13-2009, 05:20 PM
OTOH, I do think he's also a traitor and should be charged with treason.

Unless he actively gave aid and comfort to the enemy, it isn't treason. He would have to have actually worked with or aided a group like Al Qaeda to make it treason. I don't see any evidence of that, yet.

boytyperanma
11-13-2009, 05:51 PM
Terrorism has a legal definition in the US. So far none of the charges brought against Hasan have met that definition. Sure we can go with the a random dictionaries definition and many crimes committed in the US would also be terrorism.

I feel only crimes that can be charged as terrorism should be described by reputable news sources and the populace in general as terrorism.

PrettyVacant
11-13-2009, 05:55 PM
If he falls within someones definition of 'terrorist' it's surely in the Timothy McVeigh sense, not the al-Queda sense. Not that it makes any sense to me.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-13-2009, 06:01 PM
There is no evidence that he was anything other than an individual nutjob.

emarkp
11-13-2009, 06:09 PM
Yes Dio, that's the common meme, but how does being an individual or a nutjob not mean he was a terrorist?

Markxxx
11-13-2009, 06:09 PM
It's too soon to tell. The difference would be that terrorists are driven by ideology.

Was he driven by ideology or did he just snap. Just because he shouted Allah doesn't mean it was the driving force behind his criminal actions.

furt
11-13-2009, 06:18 PM
Unless he actively gave aid and comfort to the enemy, it isn't treason. He would have to have actually worked with or aided a group like Al Qaeda to make it treason. I don't see any evidence of that, yet.You're right in that there's no firm evidence per se; I haven't followed the story super close, but from what I've read it appears that there was some contact, or at least an attempt at it. Even if it was just an email exchange, in my book if he was acting at their behest or with their encouragement, that's an indication that he was throwing his lot in with them.

Of course, as I said, he might also be nuts, and I suppose there can be an insanity defense to treason. But if you email the enemy seeking their guidance, and then, acting on their behalf, attack a military base, I don't see how that isn't treason.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-13-2009, 06:19 PM
Yes Dio, that's the common meme, but how does being an individual or a nutjob not mean he was a terrorist?
"Terrorism" implies some kind of concerted act of political violence -- a conspiracy by a group, not just a lone nutjob.

Plus "terrorism" is supposd to imply violence against civilians. This was an attack on a military installation.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-13-2009, 06:23 PM
You're right in that there's no firm evidence per se; I haven't followed the story super close, but from what I've read it appears that there was some contact, or at least an attempt at it. Even if it was just an email exchange, in my book if he was acting at their behest or with their encouragement, that's an indication that he was throwing his lot in with them.

Of course, as I said, he might also be nuts, and I suppose there can be an insanity defense to treason. But if you email the enemy seeking their guidance, and then, acting on their behalf, attack a military base, I don't see how that isn't treason.
I would disagree that al Qaeda is an "enemy." It's not a country or anything, just a conglomorate of freelance guerilla cells.

Why is it so important to some people to label this guy a "terrorist?"

Bryan Ekers
11-13-2009, 06:56 PM
Can't he just be a prick who needs a fast conviction and a slow execution?

boytyperanma
11-13-2009, 07:03 PM
Why is it so important to some people to label this guy a "terrorist?"

Well Faux news seems to be pushing the label pretty hard I'd assume its so they can say how a terrorist attack happened on American soil during Obama's presidency.

I suppose the left wing people could be pushing that he be labeled a terrorist so they can claim to successfully capture and prosecute a terrorists.

To me it's political bs either way. The law clearly defines terrorism. If they thought he was a terrorist or could convict him of being one they would.

Instead we have news agencies that don't have interest in informing people of the facts and in turn end up with a populace that doesn't understand the laws of our country. Calling him a terrorist makes better headlines and creates a political issue where there wasn't one.

amarone
11-13-2009, 07:26 PM
I would disagree that al Qaeda is an "enemy." It's not a country or anything, just a conglomorate of freelance guerilla cells.

Why does something have to be "a country or [something]" to be an enemy? From Merriam -Webster:

Enemy
Pronunciation: \ˈe-nə-mē\
Function: noun
Inflected Form(s): plural en·e·mies
Etymology: Middle English enemi, from Anglo-French, from Latin inimicus, from in- 1in- + amicus friend — more at amiable
Date: 13th century
1 : one that is antagonistic to another; especially : one seeking to injure, overthrow, or confound an opponent
2 : something harmful or deadly <alcohol was his greatest enemy>
3 a : a military adversary b : a hostile unit or force
No mention anywhere of needing to be a country or similar. Al Qaeda would seem to fit all three definitions.

Pray for peace
11-13-2009, 07:45 PM
My first thought was that the Army will try to spin the story to play up a terrorism angle as a way to deflect blame from the Army for not identifying Dr. Hasan as potentially hostile, potentially unstable, and, at the very least, an unsuitable mental health professional to be treating soldiers in a combat situation.

A few people have stated that there is a legal definition of "terrorism." Here is what I was able to find, but I welcome correction or additional input if I have this wrong. "domestic terrorism" definition (http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/18/usc_sec_18_00002331----000-.html).

(5) the term “domestic terrorism” means activities that—
(A) involve acts dangerous to human life that are a violation of the criminal laws of the United States or of any State;
(B) appear to be intended—
(i) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population;
(ii) to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or
(iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping; and
(C) occur primarily within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States.

This definition is really broad, and I notice that it does not require that the act is conducted as a conspiracy in a group, i.e., the definition would encompass acts by so-called lone wolf terrorists. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lone_wolf_(terrorism))

Whether or not a terrorist act can be committed by an individual, I would definitely want more information before beginning to even speculate as to whether Dr. Hasan's acts constituted terrorism. What can be determined about Dr. Hasan's mental state during the shooting, e.g., did he suffer a psychotic break? What evidence of premeditation exists (if any)? What was the intent behind his actions in killing? Did he have contact with any groups in connection with planning or carrying out the murders?

CoolHandCox
11-13-2009, 07:52 PM
Lots of good replies, lots of different views on what it means to commit terrorism. There is no accepted universal defintion, but for the record here's how current US law defines terrorism occuring on US soil: 18 USC 2331 (http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/18/usc_sec_18_00002331----000-.html)

the term “domestic terrorism” means activities that—
(A) involve acts dangerous to human life that are a violation of the criminal laws of the United States or of any State;
(B) appear to be intended—
(i) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population;
(ii) to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or
(iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping; and
(C) occur primarily within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States.

Assuming it's read as Domestic Terrorist = A + B(i) or B(ii) or B(iii), + C; then (i) is most likely out. We don't know enough to say whether it could be (ii) or (iii). It very well could be, though.

Also, I don't think it necessarily implies that because he wasn't charged with terrorism to mean he could not be. It's a slamdunk murder charge, why bother.

(Slight hijack, if the courts-martial gives him death, the President has to personally sign off on it or you'll never actually be put to death; No President has signed off on a soldiers death since the 1960's, even though there have been soldiers sentenced to death by a courts-martial. Assuming he is in fact injected, why him and not the others?)

Personally, I think there needs to be a civilian element to terrorism. There wasn't here (was there any civilians on base? or does it only matter whether he personally intended to intimidate or coerce them, ie, through shock value), so no way is he a terrorist no matter what his motives.

Argent Towers
11-13-2009, 08:05 PM
The US marine who beat up the Greek Orthodox Priest because he looked like a Muslim was a terrorists. I don't know about the Fort Hood shooter.

Okay...so in other words, a mass shooting resulting in 12 dead, you "don't know" if it's terrorism, but a priest being beaten up, you know for sure it's terrorism.

That's one fucked up definition of terrorism you have. Really fucked up.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-13-2009, 08:07 PM
Why does something have to be "a country or [something]" to be an enemy? From Merriam -Webster:


No mention anywhere of needing to be a country or similar. Al Qaeda would seem to fit all three definitions.
That's pretty broad. By these standards, any criminal at all is an "enemy."

Al Qaeda is not a serious "adversary" or threat to the US, and we aren't at war with them. Calling them national "enemies" would seem to stretch the definition quite a bit.

But if al Qaeda is an "enemy," and hasan was acting in concert with them, then the attack on Ft. Hood was a legal act of war on a military target, and Hasan should be afforded the rights of a POW.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-13-2009, 08:12 PM
Okay...so in other words, a mass shooting resulting in 12 dead, you "don't know" if it's terrorism, but a priest being beaten up, you know for sure it's terrorism.

That's one fucked up definition of terrorism you have. Really fucked up.
How so? Which one of those statements do you disagree with?

The Flying Dutchman
11-13-2009, 08:51 PM
Unless he actively gave aid and comfort to the enemy, it isn't treason. He would have to have actually worked with or aided a group like Al Qaeda to make it treason. I don't see any evidence of that, yet.

What do you call it then when someone takes up arms against the armed forces of their own country?

The Flying Dutchman
11-13-2009, 08:57 PM
But if al Qaeda is an "enemy," and hasan was acting in concert with them, then the attack on Ft. Hood was a legal act of war on a military target, and Hasan should be afforded the rights of a POW.

Does that apply to traitors as well ?

CoolHandCox
11-13-2009, 08:58 PM
That's pretty broad. By these standards, any criminal at all is an "enemy."

I would guess it was used to mean an enemy of the United States government and whom we recognize as an enemy too.

But if al Qaeda is an "enemy," and hasan was acting in concert with them, then the attack on Ft. Hood was a legal act of war on a military target, and Hasan should be afforded the rights of a POW.

I think Hassan was a "nutjob" acting alone. But for kicks, if he was in acting in concert with a recognized enemy, then he definitely committed perfidy. If perfidy doesn't negate POW status, then even if a military base would be a legit target, he would still in no way qualify as a POW.

Captain Amazing
11-13-2009, 09:04 PM
Unless he actively gave aid and comfort to the enemy, it isn't treason. He would have to have actually worked with or aided a group like Al Qaeda to make it treason. I don't see any evidence of that, yet.

Or he "took up arms against the United States", which you could argue he did.

Euphonious Polemic
11-13-2009, 09:18 PM
What do you call it then when someone takes up arms against the armed forces of their own country?

Someone with an untreated mental condition?

eta: He shot people in his workplace. If he'd been an office worker, he might have gone and shot up his office. If he had been a person who was denied workers comp, he might have gone and shot up the worker's comp building. Or he might have just snapped and shot up a shopping mall.

He's equivalent to any of these sorts of nutjobs.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-13-2009, 09:22 PM
Does that apply to traitors as well ?
I have no idea.

Pray for peace
11-13-2009, 09:38 PM
Is the word "nutjob" being used colloquially here, as in, anyone who kills 12 people must be a nutjob? In reality, we don't know what Hasan's mental state was at the time of the crime. It's possible that he was sane at the time of the shootings.

Jolly Roger
11-13-2009, 09:46 PM
Well Faux news seems to be pushing the label pretty hard I'd assume its so they can say how a terrorist attack happened on American soil during Obama's presidency.

Of course they are. Faux News is less of an news agency and more of a propanganda machine.

I suppose the left wing people could be pushing that he be labeled a terrorist so they can claim to successfully capture and prosecute a terrorists.

Depends on the way you define terrorist. The line is getting too thin, I think. The guy was a nutjob but I don't think he was a terrorist. But calling him such allows the fruitcakes to claim that islam is to blame, the world has become too PC and that hey, anyone who doesn't submit to christianity must be a threat.

To me it's political bs either way. The law clearly defines terrorism. If they thought he was a terrorist or could convict him of being one they would.

Its a political football. I expect the morons to run with it.

Instead we have news agencies that don't have interest in informing people of the facts and in turn end up with a populace that doesn't understand the laws of our country. Calling him a terrorist makes better headlines and creates a political issue where there wasn't one.

True...it saddens me.

The Flying Dutchman
11-13-2009, 10:15 PM
Someone with an untreated mental condition?

eta: He shot people in his workplace. If he'd been an office worker, he might have gone and shot up his office. If he had been a person who was denied workers comp, he might have gone and shot up the worker's comp building. Or he might have just snapped and shot up a shopping mall.

He's equivalent to any of these sorts of nutjobs.

It seems to me most of these office worker shootouts resulted from a loss of a job. In Hassan's case, the very opposite is true. He wasn't allowed to quit his job.

He is a religious fanatic who thought he could make a pact with the devil ( US military) in exchange for a higher education. Only as fate would have it, after 9-11 he found out the price would be fighting Muslims....fighting Allah. Its one thing when you take advantage of the devil, its another thing when you fight against Allah.

Check his bio (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nidal_Malik_Hasan)

Hasan joined the Army immediately after high school, and served eight years as an enlisted soldier while attending college. He graduated from Virginia Tech in 1997 with a bachelor's degree in biochemistry, and went on to medical school at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences ("USUHS").[13] After earning his medical degree (M.D.) in 2001, Hasan completed his residency in psychiatry at Walter Reed Army Medical Center.[14] While an intern at Walter Reed, he received counseling and extra supervision.[15]


Slide 49/50 of The Koranic World View As It Relates to Muslims in the U.S. Military, a presentation made by Hasan during a symposium of U.S. Army physicians at Walter Reed Army Medical CenterAccording to the Washington Post, Hasan made a presentation titled The Koranic World View As It Relates to Muslims in the U.S. Military during his senior year of residency at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. The presentation, which was not well received by some of the attendees, recommended that the Department of Defense "should allow Muslims [sic] Soldiers the option of being released as "Conscientious objectors" to increase troop morale and decrease adverse events."[16][17]

It is pretty obvious the poor guy was in a quandry. For quite a few years.

With his imminent posting to the front, it was time to pay up to Allah.

You could call him a nut, if you want to call all religious fanatics nuts. Very few religious fanatics however would have inadvertantly found that they are the author of their own transgression against their God.

I feel confident that if the military had let him go, all would be well. He would have been just a religious fanatic and not a terrorist or traitor or what have you.

I'll never understand workers who go postal, but I can understand this guy.

intention
11-13-2009, 10:30 PM
I would say he was an Islamic nutjob who was driven by his twisted religious beliefs. He claimed that Islamic US soldiers should be released as conscientious objectors "to increase troop morale and decrease adverse events". He went around haranguing his fellow doctors to that effect, that the Army should change its policy or there would be consequences. Then he went postal and created an "adverse event" ... coincidence?

Was this an attempt to show the Army how serious he was, and to show the Army the dangers that they faced if they didn't start letting Islamic soldiers be COs? Dunno ... but it definitely makes Islamic sense, if no other kind. It makes enough Islamic sense that his actions were lauded by Anwar al-Awlaki, who was spiritual advisor to a couple of the 9/11 hijackers. al-Awlaki said on his website:

Nidal Hassan is a hero. He is a man of conscience who could not bear living the contradiction of being a Muslim and serving in an army that is fighting against his own people. This is a contradiction that many Muslims brush aside and just pretend that it doesn’t exist. Any decent Muslim cannot live, understanding properly his duties towards his Creator and his fellow Muslims, and yet serve as a US soldier. The US is leading the war against terrorism which in reality is a war against Islam. Its army is directly invading two Muslim countries and indirectly occupying the rest through its stooges.

Nidal opened fire on soldiers who were on their way to be deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. How can there be any dispute about the virtue of what he has done? In fact the only way a Muslim could Islamically justify serving as a soldier in the US army is if his intention is to follow the footsteps of men like Nidal.

The heroic act of brother Nidal also shows the dilemma of the Muslim American community. Increasingly they are being cornered into taking stances that would either make them betray Islam or betray their nation. Many amongst them are choosing the former. The Muslim organizations in America came out in a pitiful chorus condemning Nidal’s operation.

The fact that fighting against the US army is an Islamic duty today cannot be disputed. No scholar with a grain of Islamic knowledge can defy the clear cut proofs that Muslims today have the right -rather the duty- to fight against American tyranny. Nidal has killed soldiers who were about to be deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan in order to kill Muslims. The American Muslims who condemned his actions have committed treason against the Muslim Ummah and have fallen into hypocrisy.

Allah(swt) says: Give tidings to the hypocrites that there is for them a painful punishment –
Those who take disbelievers as allies instead of the believers. Do they seek with them honor [through power]? But indeed, honor belongs to Allah entirely. (al-Nisa 136-137)

The inconsistency of being a Muslim today and living in America and the West in general reveals the wisdom behind the opinions that call for migration from the West. It is becoming more and more difficult to hold on to Islam in an environment that is becoming more hostile towards Muslims.

May Allah grant our brother Nidal patience, perseverance and steadfastness and we ask Allah to accept from him his great heroic act. Ameen

Unlike you and I, al-Awlaki knows Hasan. Hasan attended al-Awlaki's mosque and exchanged a number of emails with him. al-Awlaki doesn't buy the bullshit about how Hasan was just a poor tormented psychiatrist driven over the edge by listening to soldiers unburden their souls and describe their pain. al-Aklawi sees Hasan's action, of killing 13 people and wounding 38 others, as a "virtuous" and "heroic" act ... and Hasan believed what al-Awlaki said:

Hasan’s eyes “lit up” when he mentioned his deep respect for al-Awlaki’s teachings, according to a fellow Muslim officer at the Fort Hood base in Texas, the scene of Thursday’s horrific shooting spree.

As investigators look at Hasan’s motives and mindset, his attendance at the mosque could be an important piece of the jigsaw. Al-Awlaki moved to Dar al-Hijrah as imam in January, 2001, from the west coast, and three months later the September 11 hijackers Nawaf al-Hamzi and Hani Hanjour began attending his services. A third hijacker attended his services in California.

Hasan was praying at Dar al-Hijrah at about the same time, and the FBI will now want to investigate whether he met the two terrorists.

So I'd say yes, Hasan is assuredly a terrorist under the definition given above, someone who attempts:

(iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping

amarone
11-13-2009, 10:46 PM
Al Qaeda is not a serious "adversary" or threat to the US, Good grief - do you really believe that?


But if al Qaeda is an "enemy," and hasan was acting in concert with them, then the attack on Ft. Hood was a legal act of war on a military target, and Hasan should be afforded the rights of a POW. I agree (I cannot abide the sophistry of the Bush government and its "enemy combatant" crap in order to avoid the Geneva Convention), but I think Hasan runs into trouble with POW status and Geneva Convention protections because he was wearing an American uniform at the time.

Guinastasia
11-13-2009, 10:53 PM
That's pretty broad. By these standards, any criminal at all is an "enemy."

Al Qaeda is not a serious "adversary" or threat to the US, and we aren't at war with them. Calling them national "enemies" would seem to stretch the definition quite a bit.


Wha? So what about Osama Bin Laden? Does he not count as an enemy then? :dubious:

Diogenes the Cynic
11-13-2009, 10:58 PM
No. Just a criminal. I think of an "enemy" as someone who is actually an existential threat. Does anyone think al Qaeda is going to be able to overthrow the Untited States?

intention
11-13-2009, 11:11 PM
No. Just a criminal. I think of an "enemy" as someone who is actually an existential threat. Does anyone think al Qaeda is going to be able to overthrow the Untited States?

You may define an "enemy" like that, but the rest of the world has a more reasonable definition. After all, you'd hardly call someone who caused the death of thousands of your citizens a "friend" ... and "neutral party" is clearly wrong ... "acquaintance" doesn't quite cover it ... "someone who disagrees with us" is sophistry ... yes, I think I'd go with "enemy". Particularly since he wrote and signed a "Declaration of War" against the "Jews and Crusaders", which includes the US. This hardly seems like the action of anyone but an enemy, even if he can't threaten the existence of the US.

CoolHandCox
11-13-2009, 11:11 PM
I think Hasan runs into trouble with POW status and Geneva Convention protections because he was wearing an American uniform at the time.

You are correct that he would not be a POW because he did not wear a uniform. There was no military hierarchy, ect. (reasons why the Taliban is not treated as POW's).

But another, easier reason, is this is not a "war" between two States. al qaeda can never be POW's because they are not a State. That's just a plain reading of the Geneva Conventions.

He's just a murderer who, may or may not, have motives that makes great news.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-13-2009, 11:29 PM
You may define an "enemy" like that, but the rest of the world has a more reasonable definition.
Cite?
After all, you'd hardly call someone who caused the death of thousands of your citizens a "friend" ... and "neutral party" is clearly wrong ... "acquaintance" doesn't quite cover it ... "someone who disagrees with us" is sophistry ... yes, I think I'd go with "enemy". Particularly since he wrote and signed a "Declaration of War" against the "Jews and Crusaders", which includes the US. This hardly seems like the action of anyone but an enemy, even if he can't threaten the existence of the US.
The Unabomber had a "manifesto" too. That doesn't mean it's not asinine to call him an "enemy" of the US.

No, an "enemy" has to actually be worthy of the word. Not just somebody with psychotic fantasies of overthrowing the US.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-13-2009, 11:32 PM
You are correct that he would not be a POW because he did not wear a uniform.
Yes, he did.

DigitalC
11-13-2009, 11:39 PM
Good grief - do you really believe that?




Whats unbelievable about it? do you think there's any chance whatsoever that Al Qeada can "win"?. They are like a two year old who gives you a shot in the nuts when you aren't looking, it might have hurt but they will never be a real threat.

CoolHandCox
11-13-2009, 11:52 PM
Yes, he did [wear a uniform].

You mean his American military uniform? That's clever, I guess. I'm not exactly sure if he was wearing civilian clothes or his military uniform, but it's the fact that your set apart/identifiable from your enemy that counts. Also, if he was wearing his military uniform, and he hypothetically was apart of a terrorist group, then that's perfidy/treachery, a war crime. It means he did not comply with Common Article 4 of the Geneva Conventions as amarone already correctly pointed out.

CA4 states you must comply with the below four requirements to get POW status (assuming you fight on behalf of a State, which al aqaeda does not):

(a) That of being commanded by a person responsible for his subordinates;

(b) That of having a fixed distinctive sign recognizable at a distance;

(c) That of carrying arms openly;

(d) That of conducting their operations in accordance with the laws and customs of war.

He fails (b) and (d) so far.

Ravenman
11-14-2009, 12:14 AM
Cite?The Authorization for the Use of Military Force allows the President to use military force against those who planned, aided, or carried out the 9-11 attacks. If there is a law on the books that says that whatsoever people who were involved in attacking the WTC may be attacked by our military, it beggars belief that those people are not an "enemy" of the United States.

In your reading of international law, DtC, is there anyone whatsoever who carries out violence for an international political cause is not entitled to the title prisoner of war? I would appreciate some examples of what types of people would not be POWs under your view.

I ask this not because I am convinced that Major Hassan is a terrorist, but because the argument you have advanced so far in this thread leads me to believe that there is not.

intention
11-14-2009, 12:20 AM
You may define an "enemy" like that, but the rest of the world has a more reasonable definition.
Cite?

Duh, pick any dictionary.

Onelook Dictionary

▸ noun: any hostile group of people ("He viewed lawyers as the real enemy")
▸ noun: an opposing military force ("The enemy attacked at dawn")
▸ noun: an armed adversary (especially a member of an opposing military force)
▸ noun: a personal enemy

Compact OED:

• noun (pl. enemies) 1 a person who is actively opposed or hostile to someone or something. 2 (the enemy) treated as sing. or pl. a hostile nation or its armed forces in time of war. 3 a thing that damages or opposes something: routine is the enemy of art.

Yahoo Dictionary

One who feels hatred toward, intends injury to, or opposes the interests of another; a foe.
A hostile power or force, such as a nation.
A member or unit of such a force.
A group of foes or hostile forces. See Usage Note at collective noun.
Something destructive or injurious in its effects: "Art hath an enemy called Ignorance" (Ben Jonson).

Encarta Dictionary

1. unfriendly opponent: somebody who hates or seeks to harm somebody or something
2. military opponent: a person or group, especially a military force, that fights against another in combat or battle
3. hostile power: a hostile nation or power
4. something harmful or obstructive: something that harms or opposes something else
In a case like this, time is the enemy.

Merriam Webster

1 : one that is antagonistic to another; especially : one seeking to injure, overthrow, or confound an opponent
2 : something harmful or deadly <alcohol was his greatest enemy>
3 a : a military adversary b : a hostile unit or force

Note that not one of them contains your bullshit about how they have to be capable of overthrowing your country to be called an "enemy". Merriam Webster specifically deals with the question, including in the definition of enemy "one seeking to injure" along with one seeking to "overthrow".

Not one of them babbles on like you do about how they have to be "worthy" to be an enemy.

No, an "enemy" has to actually be worthy of the word. Not just somebody with psychotic fantasies of overthrowing the US.

Cite?

Diogenes the Cynic
11-14-2009, 12:31 AM
Hasad meets none of those definitions. He's just a nutcase.

Rodgers01
11-14-2009, 01:03 AM
It seems to me most of these office worker shootouts resulted from a loss of a job. In Hassan's case, the very opposite is true. He wasn't allowed to quit his job.

He is a religious fanatic who thought he could make a pact with the devil ( US military) in exchange for a higher education. Only as fate would have it, after 9-11 he found out the price would be fighting Muslims....fighting Allah. Its one thing when you take advantage of the devil, its another thing when you fight against Allah.

Check his bio (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nidal_Malik_Hasan)



It is pretty obvious the poor guy was in a quandry. For quite a few years.

With his imminent posting to the front, it was time to pay up to Allah.

You could call him a nut, if you want to call all religious fanatics nuts. Very few religious fanatics however would have inadvertantly found that they are the author of their own transgression against their God.

I feel confident that if the military had let him go, all would be well. He would have been just a religious fanatic and not a terrorist or traitor or what have you.

I'll never understand workers who go postal, but I can understand this guy.
Does anyone know the straight dope on this idea that Hasan was unable to get out of the military? I know his cousin said he'd done everything he could to leave, but a relative of mine in the Army is absolutely certain that Hasan could have left if he'd wanted to sometime in the 8+ years since the war in Afghanistan began, or even in the 5+ years since the Iraq War began. That sounds more realistic to me than the idea that this "poor" man had no chance to leave the service in more than 8 years. Any military Dopers in the know want to weigh in?

Not that I think it matters that much - it's a piss poor excuse for murdering 13 people.

intention
11-14-2009, 01:18 AM
Hasad [sic] meets none of those definitions. He's just a nutcase.

Nice try. We were talking about whether al Qaeda was an enemy, not Hasan. In particular, we were discussing your statement that:

I would disagree that al Qaeda is an "enemy." It's not a country or anything, just a conglomorate [sic] of freelance guerilla cells.

You may not be paying attention to what you say, but some of us are.

PS - Still waiting for your cite, I provided mine ...

Zoe
11-14-2009, 01:24 AM
The Flying Dutchman: He is a religious fanatic who thought he could make a pact with the devil ( US military) in exchange for a higher education. Only as fate would have it, after 9-11 he found out the price would be fighting Muslims....fighting Allah.

Although you have phrased his position in your own words rather strangely, that was probably close to his position before he completely lost his mind. That would not make him a religious fanatic. As you can see in the post following yours (the quoted portion) the real fanatics are criticizing the Muslims in America for condemning this mass murder.

In other medical schools, psychiatrists must undergo an intense form of psychiatric evaluation and therapy themselves. There is a name for it and I'm sure that it is familiar to many of you. It has slipped my mind at the moment. I'm wondering if that was true for the training that this psychiatrist had in the military.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-14-2009, 01:51 AM
Nice try. We were talking about whether al Qaeda was an enemy, not Hasan. In particular, we were discussing your statement that:



You may not be paying attention to what you say, but some of us are.

PS - Still waiting for your cite, I provided mine ...
Al Qaeda's not an enemy either. A nuisance, maybe, but not an enemy.

Cite for what?

Declan
11-14-2009, 02:06 AM
Yes, he did.

Then he runs into problems getting caught in an enemy uniform, if you want to look at it that way, which gives him a smoke and a blindfold.

Declan

Declan
11-14-2009, 02:09 AM
(Slight hijack, if the courts-martial gives him death, the President has to personally sign off on it or you'll never actually be put to death; No President has signed off on a soldiers death since the 1960's, even though there have been soldiers sentenced to death by a courts-martial. Assuming he is in fact injected, why him and not the others?).

May as well bring this into the discussion, but what happened to that sargeant that rolled a couple of frags into a tent at the beginning of either Iraq or Afganistan, and killed a bunch of fellow troops, I could have sworn he got the death penalty.

Declan

Declan
11-14-2009, 02:14 AM
Are the actions of Major Hasan terrorism? Why or why not?

It was not terrorism , absent any further information. He belonged to no known terrorist organization or nation state that promotes terrorism. Terror is a method to achieve a goal, had he walked into one of the schools on base and started killing dependent children, then I would have been more swayed on the terrorist angle.But he did not appear at this time to link his actions with any known manifesto or cause.

Declan

intention
11-14-2009, 02:29 AM
Al Qaeda's not an enemy either. A nuisance, maybe, but not an enemy.

Cite for what?

Cite for what? Start with a cite showing that you can read. Then once you've established that, go back and read what I wrote. If you can't figure out what I requested a cite for, come back and let us know. Then I'll tell you again ... but ... real ... slowly ... next ... time. Here's a clue. I discuss it in my next paragraph.

I note that, despite my giving a host of citations for how people actually use and understand the word "enemy", you have persist in using your peculiar one-man definition, and play dumb when asked for a citation regarding how you are using the word. At least I hope you are playing dumb.

You do understand how citations work? Like, when five different dictionaries say you are wrong, you are likely wrong? Like, when the citations show you are wrong, it gets you bonus points if you admit it, and loses you points if you just ignore it?

Sheesh. Why do I bother?

CoolHandCox
11-14-2009, 02:31 AM
May as well bring this into the discussion, but what happened to that sargeant that rolled a couple of frags into a tent at the beginning of either Iraq or Afganistan, and killed a bunch of fellow troops, I could have sworn he got the death penalty.

That soldier did get the death penalty, but the military appeals process takes a long time (not unlike some States with the death penalty); I'd guess at least 10 years minimum before the President would have a chance to sign off on it, and then a couple more from signing to injecting.

But the fact these two happened during wartime might change things (speed things up). Just guessing of course, but maybe because of the extra attention??

Regardless, it normally takes a long time. I bet Bush would have signed off on the Sargeant though. I doubt Obama ever gets the chance with Hasan.

intention
11-14-2009, 02:32 AM
It was not terrorism , absent any further information. He belonged to no known terrorist organization or nation state that promotes terrorism. Terror is a method to achieve a goal, had he walked into one of the schools on base and started killing dependent children, then I would have been more swayed on the terrorist angle.But he did not appear at this time to link his actions with any known manifesto or cause.

Declan

Declan, there is a precise definition of terrorist in the criminal code cited upthread. It does not say anywhere that someone has to be a member of a "terrorist organization or nation state that promotes terrorism" to be a terrorist.

Declan
11-14-2009, 02:36 AM
Declan, there is a precise definition of terrorist in the criminal code cited upthread. It does not say anywhere that someone has to be a member of a "terrorist organization or nation state that promotes terrorism" to be a terrorist.

Yes i read that, what I was trying to convey was his target list while tragic , was not something that I would think would spread terror, suspicion regarding all muslims in the US forces yes, but not terror.

Declan

JThunder
11-14-2009, 02:39 AM
Cite for what? Start with a cite showing that you can read. Then once you've established that, go back and read what I wrote. If you can't figure out what I requested a cite for, come back and let us know. Then I'll tell you again ... but ... real ... slowly ... next ... time. Here's a clue. I discuss it in my next paragraph.

I note that, despite my giving a host of citations for how people actually use and understand the word "enemy", you have persist in using your peculiar one-man definition, and play dumb when asked for a citation regarding how you are using the word. At least I hope you are playing dumb. FWIW, I think you schooled him. :)

CoolHandCox
11-14-2009, 02:41 AM
It was not terrorism , absent any further information. He belonged to no known terrorist organization or nation state that promotes terrorism. Terror is a method to achieve a goal, had he walked into one of the schools on base and started killing dependent children, then I would have been more swayed on the terrorist angle.But he did not appear at this time to link his actions with any known manifesto or cause.

Declan, there is a precise definition of terrorist in the criminal code cited upthread. It does not say anywhere that someone has to be a member of a "terrorist organization or nation state that promotes terrorism" to be a terrorist.

I encourage anyone to come up with their definition of terrorism. That was the original spirit of this thread. ie, is he a terrorist in your view. Countries statutes defining terrorism vary widely, much like the posters in this thread.

To be sure, he can't be charged with terrorism under US law because it's not a crime under the UCMJ (which has it's own crimes) and he's being tried in a courts-martial which uses the UCMJ for the substantive crimes and court procedures.

So it's just murder for now. I'm sure there's lots of things he could be charged with, but not terrorism.

intention
11-14-2009, 03:07 AM
Yes i read that, what I was trying to convey was his target list while tragic , was not something that I would think would spread terror, suspicion regarding all muslims in the US forces yes, but not terror.

Declan

Thanks, Declan. What makes it terror is that he wanted Muslims to get Conscientious Objector status, in order to "decrease adverse events". Then he gave an example of the kind of "adverse events" he was talking about, by killing 13 people and wounding 32 more ... which to me is trying to bend the US Army to his point of view by violence.

Which is terrorism under the statute. However, YMMV.

You also say that it would spread "suspicion regarding all Muslims in the US Forces", and you are correct. However, you fail to note that this just puts more pressure on the Army to let Muslims be COs ... like I said, bending the Army to his thinking by violence.

Terraplane
11-14-2009, 06:23 AM
You also say that it would spread "suspicion regarding all Muslims in the US Forces", and you are correct. However, you fail to note that this just puts more pressure on the Army to let Muslims be COs ... like I said, bending the Army to his thinking by violence.

Do you really think that he did this with the intention of making the army let more Muslims be COs?

amarone
11-14-2009, 07:41 AM
Whats unbelievable about it? do you think there's any chance whatsoever that Al Qeada can "win"? How is that relevant? Show me any legitimate dictionary that includes a likelihood of winning as a necessary component of being an enemy. By your definition the US has no enemies as it is the most powerful military country in the world and cannot be beaten.

amarone
11-14-2009, 07:42 AM
Yes, he did. I think you have lost the plot there.

monavis
11-14-2009, 08:05 AM
To me his actions were that of a crazy coward, it takes no bravery to go into a room of people you know are unarmed and open fire on them. The men who tried to help their fellow soldiers were acting bravely,one threw a chair at him. He must have also been suicidal or he wouldn't have made such an open terrible act, He may have expected to be killed and hailed as a hero to the people who use cowardly tactics as well.

Richard Parker
11-14-2009, 09:55 AM
The US regularly kills potential combatants who are well outside the battlefield by shooting hellfire missiles into their homes, sometimes on the information of people associated with the enemy. What makes that normal warfare, but not the killing of a bunch of certain combatants on an army base to prevent them from going to war?

Does the label of terrorism just turn on who you think is right in a conflict and who you think is wrong? The only objective distinction that occurs to me is that the pilot of the drone is a declared combatant (though he may be sitting in Virginia). But are all non-combatants who use force against combatants off the battlefield terrorists? That would be a very broad definition indeed, especially in a war in which the line between combatant and non-combatant is pretty blurry. It would also conveniently make all members of a spontaneous resistance terrorists.

Terrorism is much easier to identify when an individual targets civilians, and does so with the motivation of achieving a certain effect on a populace as opposed to the tactical desire to kill those civilians. 9/11, Oklahoma City, suicide bombing, etc. That, to me, is classic terrorism. And neither element is clearly satisfied here: he does not seem to have been targeting civilians and he may indeed have been trying to prevent these particular combatants from going to war.

It is also isn't clear to me what purpose is served by calling this terrorism. It would seem to undermine the War on Terror to do so, since this is exactly the kind of act that cannot be stopped by fighting people in Iraq/Afghanistan and indeed is only exacerbated by such tactics.

Pray for peace
11-14-2009, 10:19 AM
Does anyone know the straight dope on this idea that Hasan was unable to get out of the military? I know his cousin said he'd done everything he could to leave, but a relative of mine in the Army is absolutely certain that Hasan could have left if he'd wanted to sometime in the 8+ years since the war in Afghanistan began, or even in the 5+ years since the Iraq War began. That sounds more realistic to me than the idea that this "poor" man had no chance to leave the service in more than 8 years. Any military Dopers in the know want to weigh in?

Not that I think it matters that much - it's a piss poor excuse for murdering 13 people.

The Washington Post has reported that the Army has no record that Hasan sought to leave the military, and that even if he had sought to leave the Army, it would have been difficult for him to leave prior to fulfilling the service obligation that arose from his medical training. cite (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/11/11/AR2009111128106.html?sub=AR&sid=ST2009111127361)

An Army official also said that Hasan, who is believed to have killed 13 people last week at Fort Hood, Tex., did not formally seek to leave the military as a conscientious objector or for any other reason. It is unclear whether Hasan, whose aunt has said he sought to leave the military, made informal efforts to leave through contacts with his immediate superiors, and if so how his chain of command at lower levels might have responded to such efforts.

But any formal request by Hasan to separate early would have been submitted to the Department of the Army, according to the official, who saw Hasan's file before it was recently sealed by Army investigators. The official spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the case publicly.

Maj. Gen. Gina S. Farrisee, the Army's personnel chief, said in an interview Monday that because of the ongoing investigation, she and other Army officials cannot discuss Hasan's specific situation. However, Farrisee said it would take an extraordinary circumstance -- such as debilitating illness or the death of a spouse -- for an officer with Hasan's rank and medical training to be allowed to resign before completing his or her service obligation. It would be "very, very unusual," said Paul Aswell, an Army personnel official. "I can't think of any in recent years."

Even after officers complete their service obligations, it is extremely rare for them to be allowed to leave immediately prior to deployments, Farrisee said. In the past three years, "we've had about three officers who asked to depart because their service obligation was over and then they did not deploy with the unit," said Farrisee, speaking of cases that came to the Department of the Army for approval.

NYT has reported that it is difficult to avoid deployment, particularly for who have received substantial or valuable training, such as physicians. cite (http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/10/us/10army.html?_r=1)

Winning a conscientious-objection discharge is a long and cumbersome process, lawyers say. According to the Army, only .01 percent of the force each year is discharged for conscientious objection.

“The odds of success,” said James M. Branum, co-chairman of the National Lawyer’s Guild’s Military Law Task Force, “are very, very slim, because you must prove that you were not a conscientious objector when you enlisted, but that something happened to crystallize your beliefs in a different direction. Your views must be religious or from a deep place of conscience, not purely sociological or political. And you have to oppose all wars, not just a particular one.”

DigitalC
11-14-2009, 11:11 AM
How is that relevant? Show me any legitimate dictionary that includes a likelihood of winning as a necessary component of being an enemy. By your definition the US has no enemies as it is the most powerful military country in the world and cannot be beaten.

I didn't say anything about them being an enemy, personally that whole discussion seems pretty silly. I was agreeing with Dios claim that they are not a "serious threat to the U.S." which you seemed to find unbelievable.

amarone
11-14-2009, 11:14 AM
I didn't say anything about them being an enemy, personally that whole discussion seems pretty silly. I was agreeing with Dios claim that they are not a "serious threat to the U.S." which you seemed to find unbelievable. The you misunderstand - I disagree with using whether they are a serious threat as a major criterion in determining whether they are "enemy".

Llama Llogophile
11-14-2009, 12:14 PM
Seems to me that Hasan could be characterized more appropriately as the perpetrator of a hate crime than of terrorism.

I won't delve into the legal definitions in detail. But I believe in the recent thread about hate crimes, we put forth the idea that a hate crime is one in which the intent is to not simply harm the victim(s), but to send a message of threat to others belonging to the same group.

Hard to distinguish from terrorism, perhaps. But I think there is a difference.

From what I understand of Hasan's attack, he may have intended to send a message to someone (other Americans, non-Muslims, the military?). So that strikes me as closer to a hate crime.

Marley23
11-14-2009, 01:40 PM
Start with a cite showing that you can read.
Insulting posts like these are not allowed in this forum. Criticize Diogenes the Cynic if you like, but avoid personal insults, such as calling people stupid and suggesting they can't read.

intention
11-14-2009, 02:30 PM
Insulting posts like these are not allowed in this forum. Criticize Diogenes the Cynic if you like, but avoid personal insults, such as calling people stupid and suggesting they can't read.

Point taken, thanks. I get frustrated.

w.

intention
11-14-2009, 02:43 PM
You also say that it would spread "suspicion regarding all Muslims in the US Forces", and you are correct. However, you fail to note that this just puts more pressure on the Army to let Muslims be COs ... like I said, bending the Army to his thinking by violence.
Do you really think that he did this with the intention of making the army let more Muslims be COs?

While none of us know what he was thinking, he had said that he wanted to be officially excused from going to fight against other Muslims. Seems like a good bet that part of his ideation was on the order of "I'll show them what happens when they force a peaceful follower of Allah to fight against his brothers! They'll be sorry! They'll have to change their ways." That's what makes it terrorism to me.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-14-2009, 02:53 PM
So you're citing your own fanatsy of what he might have been thinking as evidence that he was a terrorist?

Sorry, he was just a nutjob. Islam had nothing to do with it, any more than Christianity makes people kill doctors. We can still credit President Obama with allowing zero terrorist attacks during his term in office.

Pray for peace
11-14-2009, 04:17 PM
So you're citing your own fanatsy of what he might have been thinking as evidence that he was a terrorist?

Sorry, he was just a nutjob. Islam had nothing to do with it, any more than Christianity makes people kill doctors. We can still credit President Obama with allowing zero terrorist attacks during his term in office.

The bolding above is mine.

Aren't you citing your own fantasy of what he was thinking?

Isn't it his subjective intent that matters? We don't know what he was thinking. Perhaps in his mind Islam did have something to do with it, or perhaps not. If it is determined that he was mentally ill at the time of the attack, must we throw his subjective intent out the window? Even though I would like to credit President Obama with allowing zero terrorist attacks during his term in office, I don't think we can make a determination yet in this case.

intention
11-14-2009, 04:48 PM
So you're citing your own fanatsy of what he might have been thinking as evidence that he was a terrorist?

Sorry, he was just a nutjob. Islam had nothing to do with it, any more than Christianity makes people kill doctors. We can still credit President Obama with allowing zero terrorist attacks during his term in office.

Oh, now I get it. For you, this not about about whether this is terrorism. It's once again about Obama.

Gosh, I didn't realize that this discussion was about whether Obama has or doesn't have the super-power to stop someone in Texas from getting a weapon and killing people. But now I understand why you are so rabid with your claim that "it wasn't terrorism, oh no, it was just a regular guy" ... because you think that it means something about Obama.

What could Obama or Bush or any President have done have prevented this? That's the height of lunacy, to make that argument on either side. I can understand Republicans making that argument. But the correct response is to point and laugh, not to say "Obama has kept us safe from terror", as though he could have stopped the attack.

Assuming that the media reports are correct, Hasan was a radical Muslim with ties to other radical Muslims, who was trying to get out of the army because he was a Muslim who didn't want to fight against Muslims, and shouted "Allahu akbar" when he started shooting ... but oh, no, this had absolutely nothing to do with Islam, nothing at all.

You are right that Christianity doesn't make people kill doctors, just as Islam doesn't make psychiatrists kill unarmed soldiers.

However, some doctor killers cite their Christian beliefs as being the reason they kill doctors. I hope you can see the difference and make the obvious inferences.

gonzomax
11-14-2009, 05:48 PM
http://rawstory.com/2009/11/turley-ft-hood-shooting-rage-not-terrorism/ I vote no. He was not putting political pressure on the government when he went crazy. It had no agenda ,saying that if we did not pull out, more soldiers would die in American bases. It was more like a guy going postal. There are a few people who got guns and shot people after they lost their jobs. Did that result in less people getting laid off? Was it supposed to?

The Flying Dutchman
11-14-2009, 06:53 PM
The whole lot of you just don't see it. You haven't a fucking clue what its like to be a fanatic believer. I've been there. Sometimes your left without a choice.

I"ll argue the point that Hassan went suddenly nuts. But I won't argue the point that he was nuts for a very long time. All fanatics are nuts even if they don't breach the confines of our overall ideas of acceptable behavior.

This guy simply was concerned with his participation in an organization devoted to killing the people of Allah. But he wasn't directly involved. He tried to extricate himself from the US military by pulling a Maxwell Klinger to make himself unsuitable for service.

But when push comes to shove and all his options ran out, there was no way he could justify allowing himself to participate in the war zone against Muslims. Allah would most certainly deny him. He had dug himself a hole, and as much as he himself was not inclined to violence, the only way out was to terminate his temporal future and secure God's favour for the afterlife.

He made the same decision that a Muslim suicide bomber makes.

intention
11-14-2009, 06:59 PM
http://rawstory.com/2009/11/turley-ft-hood-shooting-rage-not-terrorism/ I vote no. He was not putting political pressure on the government when he went crazy. It had no agenda ,saying that if we did not pull out, more soldiers would die in American bases. It was more like a guy going postal. There are a few people who got guns and shot people after they lost their jobs. Did that result in less people getting laid off? Was it supposed to?

From your citation ...

"Terrorism is more than just killing people," Turley emphasized. "We're becoming a nation where we want to define everything as terrorism. ... We have a shooting of an abortion doctor, it's terrorism. ... A hate crime is terrorism. Well, it's not. It's murder."

As your citation points out, terrorism is more than just killing people. It is killing people to try to force society or a group of people to change its actions or its laws because they are afraid of the consequences if they don't.

So shooting an abortion doctor is assuredly terrorism. It it trying to get people to change the abortion laws through violence. It is trying to get doctors to stop doing abortions because they are afraid they will get killed.

How is that not terrorism even under the most restrictive definition? I find your citation wholly unconvincing.

Yes, a hate crime is not necessarily terrorism. If some guys beat up a man because he is black, that's a hate crime that is just violence.

But if they burn a cross on a lawn to scare black people out of town, that's a hate crime that is terrorism. Turley seems oblivious to the difference.

In the Hasan case, he wanted the Army to change its laws about Muslims, and warned of "adverse events" if they did not listen to him. They did not listen to him. He created an "adverse event".

Coincidence? Possibly ...

Terraplane
11-14-2009, 07:02 PM
While none of us know what he was thinking, he had said that he wanted to be officially excused from going to fight against other Muslims. Seems like a good bet that part of his ideation was on the order of "I'll show them what happens when they force a peaceful follower of Allah to fight against his brothers! They'll be sorry! They'll have to change their ways." That's what makes it terrorism to me.

This might be true, but your post seemed to me to imply that forcing the army to make more Muslim COs was a part of his plan. I think that might be a bit of a reach.

intention
11-14-2009, 07:05 PM
The whole lot of you just don't see it. You haven't a fucking clue what its like to be a fanatic believer. I've been there. Sometimes your left without a choice.

I"ll argue the point that Hassan went suddenly nuts. But I won't argue the point that he was nuts for a very long time. All fanatics are nuts even if they don't breach the confines of our overall ideas of acceptable behavior.

This guy simply was concerned with his participation in an organization devoted to killing the people of Allah. But he wasn't directly involved. He tried to extricate himself from the US military by pulling a Maxwell Klinger to make himself unsuitable for service.

But when push comes to shove and all his options ran out, there was no way he could justify allowing himself to participate in the war zone against Muslims. Allah would most certainly deny him. He had dug himself a hole, and as much as he himself was not inclined to violence, the only way out was to terminate his temporal future and secure God's favour for the afterlife.

He made the same decision that a Muslim suicide bomber makes.

This is madness. Muslim armies have warred on other Muslim armies since there have been Muslims. How come the Muslim soldiers in those armies didn't go on killing sprees to uphold the gentle nature of the Religion of Peace™? Iran and Iraq had one of the most bloody wars in recent history, millions of Muslims killed by other Muslims, and you want to claim with a straight face that Hasan was out of options?

Although I greatly wish that there were, there is nothing in Islam that says Muslims can't fight other Muslims. This is the most candy-assed excuse for Hasan that I have ever read. The "decision that a Muslim suicide bomber makes" is all too often to kill other Muslims, so your claim doesn't make any sense at all.

intention
11-14-2009, 07:08 PM
This might be true, but your post seemed to me to imply that forcing the army to make more Muslim COs was a part of his plan. I think that might be a bit of a reach.

You are right, it could be just a coincidence that he wanted the Army to make special rules for Muslims, and when they didn't he killed as many Army personnel as he could.

Or not ...

The Flying Dutchman
11-14-2009, 07:15 PM
This is madness. Muslim armies have warred on other Muslim armies since there have been Muslims. How come the Muslim soldiers in those armies didn't go on killing sprees to uphold the gentle nature of the Religion of Peace™? Iran and Iraq had one of the most bloody wars in recent history, millions of Muslims killed by other Muslims, and you want to claim with a straight face that Hasan was out of options?

Although I greatly wish that there were, there is nothing in Islam that says Muslims can't fight other Muslims. This is the most candy-assed excuse for Hasan that I have ever read. The "decision that a Muslim suicide bomber makes" is all too often to kill other Muslims, so your claim doesn't make any sense at all.

You missed a most significant point. Hassan was scheduled to be in the service of non Muslims killing Muslims. fighting for the great Satan.

intention
11-14-2009, 08:03 PM
You missed a most significant point. Hassan was scheduled to be in the service of non Muslims killing Muslims. fighting for the great Satan.

Oh, I see. If you kill Muslims because you are in the Iraqi Army and you want to take over a Muslim country like Kuwait, that's fine. But if you kill Muslims because you are in the Canadian Army and you are trying to stop Iraq from taking over a neighboring Muslim country like Kuwait, that's a no-no. Have I got that right?

I guess that makes as much sense as anything else Islamic ... but it is hardly "significant". As far as I know, the Koran doesn't say "It's OK to kill other Believers if you want their oil and money and land and you team up exclusively with other Muslims to kill them." But I could be wrong.

If "fighting for the Great Satan" is really the issue, you'd think he would have considered that before letting Satan pay for his medical school. Wasn't like he hadn't heard about the Gulf War, the US Army fighting Muslims wasn't something that only happened after he signed up. He was happy to dance, but then when the bill came due he didn't want to pay the piper ... hardly a novel situation. So I still say that's just an excuse. We've all heard stories about what happens when you sell your soul to Satan. So why would he expect anything different?

Camus
11-14-2009, 08:23 PM
You missed a most significant point. Hassan was scheduled to be in the service of non Muslims killing Muslims. fighting for the great Satan.

That's the thing that I don't understand, particularly with all the people in this thread stating that they "understand" Hasan's twisted logic. Hasan was ALREADY in the service of the US, fighting fanatics who happen to be Muslim. Whether he was at Walter Reed or Fort Hood or deployed in Afghanistan, his job is to indirectly support the war effort and be a combat multiplier for the combat arms troops who are actually doing the fighting. His core job functions wouldn't change because his posting location changes.

As a doctor and psychiatrist, he wouldn't be carrying anything more than an M9 while deployed and that would only be for self-defense, not any kind of offensive combat missions. A conscientious objector status wouldn't likely help him, since he wasn't in a combatant role to begin with. And he can't claim to object to all wars, since there isn't a record to support that.

Even if someone doesn't believe that Hasan is a terrorist, his actions, particularly firing at a seemingly random group of people and soldiers, indicate he's not a likely "postal" murderer either.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-14-2009, 11:54 PM
The bolding above is mine.

Aren't you citing your own fantasy of what he was thinking?
No, I'm citing what he actually said and did.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-14-2009, 11:59 PM
Oh, now I get it. For you, this not about about whether this is terrorism. It's once again about Obama.
I was being sarcastic. It's pretty obvious to me that the reason some people are working so hard to label this psychotic as a "terrorist" is only so they can say that Obama allowed a terrorist attack. It's about Obama for you guys on the far right, not for me. I was just mocking that attitude.

intention
11-15-2009, 12:13 AM
No, I'm citing what he actually said and did.

You haven't provided a cite, so you are speculating rather than citing. Where did he say that his actions had nothing to do with Islam, as you claim?

intention
11-15-2009, 12:19 AM
I was being sarcastic. It's pretty obvious to me that the reason some people are working so hard to label this psychotic as a "terrorist" is only so they can say that Obama allowed a terrorist attack. It's about Obama for you guys on the far right, not for me. I was just mocking that attitude.

While that may be true of some people, I don't care either way because I know that Obama, or Bush, or Abraham Lincoln could not prevent someone from picking up a gun and shooting a bunch of people. It's easy to be wise after the fact. In my case, you are mocking a straw man.

So your imagined motive is just that ... imaginary. I think it was terrorism because I think he did it to try to prove a point, to make a statement, to force the Army to change the policy about Muslims. That is terrorism, no matter who is President. He wasn't going postal to get revenge on the people he killed. He was making a point. Why do you think he shouted "Allahu akbar" if Islam "had nothing to do with it"?

Diogenes the Cynic
11-15-2009, 01:15 AM
I haven't seen any proof that he shouted the takbir.

Religious mania is a common symptom of mental illness -- a symptom, not a cause.

And it's not a strawman to say that the right is desperately trying to demagogue this as a "terrorist attack" purely to try to score political points against Obama.

Boyo Jim
11-15-2009, 03:07 AM
That's pretty broad. By these standards, any criminal at all is an "enemy."

Al Qaeda is not a serious "adversary" or threat to the US, and we aren't at war with them. Calling them national "enemies" would seem to stretch the definition quite a bit.

But if al Qaeda is an "enemy," and hasan was acting in concert with them, then the attack on Ft. Hood was a legal act of war on a military target, and Hasan should be afforded the rights of a POW.

In that case, and in particular if he wore a US military uniform when carrying out the attack, he might be considered a spy and subject to summary execution.

I recall there were several small units of German soldiers who wore GI uniforms and spoke English and infiltrated behind the lines during the Battle of the Bulge. Several were caught and executed.

It may well be that laws have changed since then...

intention
11-15-2009, 03:59 AM
I haven't seen any proof that he shouted the takbir.

Proof? What would constitute "proof"? Do you think there is a video somewhere?

In the absence of that, we're left with eyewitness testimony. Here's a report from that noted right-wing site, michaelmoore.com (http://www.michaelmoore.com/words/latest-news/gunman-fort-hood-shooting-maj-nidal-malik-hasan-shouted-allahu-akbar-deadly-attack) ...

Gunman in Fort Hood shooting, Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, shouted 'Allahu Akbar' before deadly attack

By Matthew Lysiak In Fort Hood, Tex., Robert F. Moore and Corky Siemaszko In New York / New York Daily News

The gunman in the Fort Hood massacre hollered "Allahu Akbar!" before embarking on a bloody rampage that left more than a dozen dead, an onlooker told investigators.
"We do have a witness who reported that," Col. John Rossi said Friday morning.
"Allahu Akbar" means "God is great" in Arabic.

and from a local TV news station (http://www.kbtx.com/local/headlines/69794777.html):

Ft. Hood Shooting Survivor Shares His Story

KILLEEN (November 11, 2009)-Fort Hood shooting victim, Spc. Logan Burnette, 24,
shared his story of survival Wednesday morning from Metroplex Hospital in Killeen.

Burnette said he was sitting in the Soldier Readiness Center last Thursday when a gunman now identified as Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan walked in, shouted, "Allahu Akbar!" and then began firing into the crowd.

The Arabic phrase translates to mean "God is great" in English.

Burnette said he threw a chair at the gunman, who then fired, striking Burnette in the hip and abdomen.

So are you calling Specialist Logan Burnette a liar based on some evidence? Or are you just making baseless claims?

Religious mania is a common symptom of mental illness -- a symptom, not a cause.

Cite for symptom rather than cause? And more to the point, cite for the claim that Hasan has a "mental illness"? It's a convenient claim, but I haven't heard anyone make that claim other than in a general sense, that you'd have to be nuts to open fire on a bunch of innocent people. Well, either nuts or a Jihadist ... and we do have plenty of evidence that he was that ... from ABC News (http://www.kbtx.com/local/headlines/69794777.html):

Major Hasan: Soldier of Allah; Many Ties to Jihad Web Sites

Officials Say Accused Fort Hood Shooter Used Multiple Hotmail, AOL Accounts for Overseas Contacts

By RICHARD ESPOSITO, MARY-ROSE ABRAHAM and RHONDA SCHWARTZ

United States Army Major Nidal Hasan proclaimed himself a "soldier of Allah" on private business cards he obtained over the Internet and kept in a box at his apartment near Fort Hood, Texas.

Major Nidal Hasan's private business card, which he obtained over the Internet and kept in a box at his apartment near Fort Hood, Texas.

Hasan, the alleged perpetrator of last week's fatal shootings in Fort Hood, TX, was charged Thursday with 13 counts of premeditated murder under Article 118 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, which can carry a sentence up to death or life imprisonment.

The cards make no mention of his military affiliation, but underneath his name he listed himself as SoA (SWT). SoA is commonly used on jihadist Web sites as the acronym for Soldier of Allah, according to investigators and experts who have studied such sites. SWT is commonly used by Muslims as an acronym for Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala, Glory to God.

"He was making no secret of allegiances," said former FBI agent Brad Garrett, an ABC News consultant.

...

U.S. officials and analysts told ABCNews.com today that Hasan used multiple e-mail addresses and screen names as he contacted several jihadist web sites around the world.

In addition to his contacts with suspected al Qaeda recruiter Anwar al Awlaki in Yemen, authorities said there is evidence he contacted other radical sites and individuals, including some in Europe.

On Hasan's official Army personnel record, obtained by ABCNews.com., Hasan lists his e-mail address using the first name of Abduwall, instead of Nidal. Abduwalli, in Arabic, means "slave of" the great protector, or God.

And you can say with a straight face that "Islam had nothing to do with it"???? Please.

And it's not a strawman to say that the right is desperately trying to demagogue this as a "terrorist attack" purely to try to score political points against Obama.

And I should care why? The question was whether it is or is not a terrorist attack, not what the right might do if it turns out to be a terrorist attack. Which is why it is a strawman.

Terraplane
11-15-2009, 05:43 AM
You are right, it could be just a coincidence that he wanted the Army to make special rules for Muslims, and when they didn't he killed as many Army personnel as he could.

Or not ...

Yeah, you see, you said that he did what he did to make the army allow more Muslims to be COs, but what he did isn't going to do that nor is it likely he meant for it to do that. But fuck it, right? Just keep saying different things each time I post and maybe eventually you'll get shit so convoluted that nobody else will notice it.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-15-2009, 10:12 AM
Proof? What would constitute "proof"? Do you think there is a video somewhere?

In the absence of that, we're left with eyewitness testimony. Here's a report from that noted right-wing site, michaelmoore.com (http://www.michaelmoore.com/words/latest-news/gunman-fort-hood-shooting-maj-nidal-malik-hasan-shouted-allahu-akbar-deadly-attack) ...



and from a local TV news station (http://www.kbtx.com/local/headlines/69794777.html):



So are you calling Specialist Logan Burnette a liar based on some evidence? Or are you just making baseless claims?



Cite for symptom rather than cause? And more to the point, cite for the claim that Hasan has a "mental illness"? It's a convenient claim, but I haven't heard anyone make that claim other than in a general sense, that you'd have to be nuts to open fire on a bunch of innocent people. Well, either nuts or a Jihadist ... and we do have plenty of evidence that he was that ... from ABC News (http://www.kbtx.com/local/headlines/69794777.html):



And you can say with a straight face that "Islam had nothing to do with it"???? Please.



And I should care why? The question was whether it is or is not a terrorist attack, not what the right might do if it turns out to be a terrorist attack. Which is why it is a strawman.

I'm sure that some people have convinced themselves they heard the takbir. Suggestion is a powerful thing, and memory is terribly unreliable, especially in stressful situations like that. The fact they they think they heard something is not evidence that they actually heard it. Eyewitness testimony is basically worthless as evidence, and at least one medic at the scene has said Hasan never spoke.

Islam had nothing to do with it. If Islam per se caused people to become spree killers, then all Muslims would be spree killers. Therefore Islam doesnot cause people to be spree killers. It's pretty simple.

This guy was just nuts, pure and simple, just like the insane people who think Jesus wants them to kill doctors or invade Iraq.

Captain Amazing
11-15-2009, 11:01 AM
Islam had nothing to do with it. If Islam per se caused people to become spree killers, then all Muslims would be spree killers. Therefore Islam doesnot cause people to be spree killers. It's pretty simple.

That's pretty classically a strawman, there. You're starting by trying to disprove the statement, "Islam had something to do with Maj. Hasan's actions", and you end up disproving the statement "Islam causes people to become spree killers."

It's possible that the major's Islam, along with other factors specific to him, led to his doing what he did.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-15-2009, 12:38 PM
No it isn't.

intention
11-15-2009, 12:40 PM
No it isn't.

Dio at his finest, reduced to "NO IT ISN'T NO IT ISN'T NA NA NA I CAN'T HEAR YOU".

Captain Amazing
11-15-2009, 12:47 PM
No it isn't.

It's certainly possible. People have killed other people or committed crimes in the name of religion before, and so religion was a contributing factor in those cases. I don't know if it was in Major Hasan's case; it may well not have been, but that doesn't mean it's not possible that it was.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-15-2009, 12:50 PM
Does Christianity cause people to kill doctors?

You guys keep confusing a symptom of mental ilness (religious mania) for a cause. Religion doesn't make people crazy. Crazy makes people into religious fanatics. The specific religion is utterly irrelevant,

intention
11-15-2009, 12:51 PM
Yeah, you see, you said that he did what he did to make the army allow more Muslims to be COs, but what he did isn't going to do that nor is it likely he meant for it to do that.

How do you know that it "isn't going to do that"?

Because I suspect that the next Muslim that stands up and says "I want to get CO status because I don't want to fight Muslims", the Army will pay a whole lot more attention to them than they did to Hasan ... and that as a result, they will be less likely to be posted to Iraq or another Muslim area.

Finally, you say "nor is it likely he meant for it to do that." What do you think he meant for it to do? Serious question.

PS - You say:

But fuck it, right? Just keep saying different things each time I post and maybe eventually you'll get shit so convoluted that nobody else will notice it.

I didn't realize I was supposed to say the same thing every time you post. I thought this was one of those "conversations", you know, where people introduce new ideas and move from one topic to another. Although now that you mention it, I have noted that you tend to say the same thing each time regardless of how many opposing citations and ideas are presented, and Dio certainly is the king of just repeating "It is not" ad nauseum ...

Diogenes the Cynic
11-15-2009, 12:53 PM
You're the one trying to make the assertion. Prove Islam had a fucking thing to do with it.

intention
11-15-2009, 12:53 PM
Does Christianity cause people to kill doctors?

You guys keep confusing a symptom of mental ilness (religious mania) for a cause. Religion doesn't make people crazy. Crazy makes people into religious fanatics. The specific religion is utterly irrelevant,

This is a perfect example of you just repeating yourself. You made this claim before. I asked for a citatation. You just say it again, as though you could prove your point through endless repetition. Boooring! Cite for Hasan having a "mental illness"? Cite for religion being unable to drive people crazy?

intention
11-15-2009, 01:01 PM
You're the one trying to make the assertion. Prove Islam had a fucking thing to do with it.

Haven't you been following the bouncing ball? I have provided various citations showing that Hasan was heavily involved in jihadic Islam. I have provided an eyewitness account that he shouted "Allahu Akbar". I have provided information that he had business cards that didn't mention he was in the army but gave his occupation as "Soldier of Allah". I have provided evidence that al-Akwari, Hasan's spiritual mentor, certainly thinks it has everything to do with Islam. And for bonus points, I provided citations showing that your definition of "enemy" wasn't used by anybody but you.

In fact, unlike you, who have provided absolutely nothing, I have provided citations for everything I have claimed.

You do understand how this game works?

Because it's your turn ...

Mosier
11-15-2009, 01:10 PM
No. Just a criminal. I think of an "enemy" as someone who is actually an existential threat. Does anyone think al Qaeda is going to be able to overthrow the Untited States?

What in the world are you talking about? Was the United States not at war in Vietnam because there was no threat the USA could be overthrown? Nobody has had a shot at overthrowing the US government since 1812, so I guess that means we've been at peace for 200 years!

Captain Amazing
11-15-2009, 01:15 PM
Does Christianity cause people to kill doctors?

Christianity doesn't cause people to kill doctors, but if you're the type of person who's already prone to violence against other people, then if you come to believe that abortion is a great moral evil and that you have a moral duty to stop it by any means necessary, that belief may focus your violence against doctors who perform abortions.

gonzomax
11-15-2009, 01:26 PM
While that may be true of some people, I don't care either way because I know that Obama, or Bush, or Abraham Lincoln could not prevent someone from picking up a gun and shooting a bunch of people. It's easy to be wise after the fact. In my case, you are mocking a straw man.

So your imagined motive is just that ... imaginary. I think it was terrorism because I think he did it to try to prove a point, to make a statement, to force the Army to change the policy about Muslims. That is terrorism, no matter who is President. He wasn't going postal to get revenge on the people he killed. He was making a point. Why do you think he shouted "Allahu akbar" if Islam "had nothing to do with it"?

I read where survivors said he said nothing while he was shooting. He yelled nothing at all.

intention
11-15-2009, 01:29 PM
Does Christianity cause people to kill doctors?


Asked and answered (http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showpost.php?p=11779069&postcount=74), move on ...

The Flying Dutchman
11-15-2009, 01:34 PM
Eyewitness testimony is basically worthless as evidence, and at least one medic at the scene has said Hasan never spoke.


Dio, given that you claim there is no credence in eyewitness testimony, why do you support your argument with the eyewitness testimony of the medic ?

I await your response with baited breath.

BTW, are medics on hand everywhere on the base in case of such an incident , and thus able to be present for the opening remarks of the shooter ?

I doubt it.

More likely, the medic arrived after the shooter was rendered unconscous. No wonder the medic can claim he never spoke.

intention
11-15-2009, 01:34 PM
I read where survivors said he said nothing while he was shooting. He yelled nothing at all.

Since it is generally easier to overlook something than to make something up out of the whole cloth, my general rule of thumb is give more weight to the person who saw or heard something than to the person who saw or heard nothing.

However, you could be right. Where did you read it, and who said it? I have provided a citation to the actual words of an actual person.

Finally, whether he said "Allahu Akbar" or not, there is plenty of other evidence (cited upthread) that radical jihad made up a large portion of Hasan's ideation.

intention
11-15-2009, 01:39 PM
... I await your response with baited breath. ...

Minor pet peeve: it's "bated" breath, from "abated", meaning you are holding your breath waiting for his answer.

I'm waiting too, but knowing Dio, I'm not holding my breath ... it's just another Dio claim, and his motto seems to be "Cite-free since 1973!"

intention
11-15-2009, 01:42 PM
... Eyewitness testimony is basically worthless as evidence ...

Yeah, that's why they never, ever would even think of allowing it in a court of law ... :rolleyes:

The Flying Dutchman
11-15-2009, 01:56 PM
Minor pet peeve: it's "bated" breath, from "abated", meaning you are holding your breath waiting for his answer.



Not to argue, but I couldn't resist Dio's bait with that contradiction and I'll bet he has an incredible answer for a response.

Pray for peace
11-15-2009, 01:57 PM
I'm sure that some people have convinced themselves they heard the takbir. Suggestion is a powerful thing, and memory is terribly unreliable, especially in stressful situations like that. The fact they they think they heard something is not evidence that they actually heard it. Eyewitness testimony is basically worthless as evidence, and at least one medic at the scene has said Hasan never spoke.

Islam had nothing to do with it. If Islam per se caused people to become spree killers, then all Muslims would be spree killers. Therefore Islam doesnot cause people to be spree killers. It's pretty simple.

This guy was just nuts, pure and simple, just like the insane people who think Jesus wants them to kill doctors or invade Iraq.

Do you have a cite for your statement that at least one medic at the scene has said that Hasan never spoke? I'm not just giving you a hard time here. I have been trying to find confirmation of this in a reputable news source and I can't find it.

NPR (http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=120183526&ps=cprs) reported that "FBI investigators aren't sure Hasan really did say those words before he started shooting," but this isn't an affirmative indication that eyewitness testimony is in dispute. It could merely mean that the investigation is ongoing.

I did find that the AP (http://www.philly.com/philly/wires/ap/news/nation_world/69948777.html) and Washington Post (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/11/13/AR2009111304215.html) reported yesterday and Friday that

Army officials have said they believe Hasan acted alone when he jumped on a table with two handguns last week, shouted "Allahu akbar" and opened fire inside a building at Fort Hood. The 13 people killed included a pregnant soldier and at least three other mental health professionals.

gonzomax
11-15-2009, 02:01 PM
Mother Jones has an article saying it . I also heard a witness on the radio say he heard no shouting at all. I know it would fit nicely into peoples preconceptions but I thing we should wait before we proclaim it actually happened. This is not Fox News yet.

gonzomax
11-15-2009, 02:10 PM
http://rofasix.blogspot.com/2009/11/what-happened-ft-hood.html Eyewitness account and she heard the gun shots and did not hear a thing other than shooting.
Lets not jump on that handy, dandy bandwagon so fast.

CoolHandCox
11-15-2009, 02:24 PM
Is shouting "Allahu akbar" before going on a killing spree evidence of being a terrorist or just evidence of being Muslim? If it's evidence of being a terrorist, why?

TWDuke
11-15-2009, 02:25 PM
Islam had nothing to do with it. If Islam per se caused people to become spree killers, then all Muslims would be spree killers. Therefore Islam doesnot cause people to be spree killers. It's pretty simple.

This guy was just nuts, pure and simple, just like the insane people who think Jesus wants them to kill doctors or invade Iraq.Being nuts had nothing to do with it. If being nuts caused people to become spree killers, then all nuts would be spree killers. Therefore being nuts does not cause people to be spree killers. It's pretty simple.

intention
11-15-2009, 02:46 PM
http://rofasix.blogspot.com/2009/11/what-happened-ft-hood.html Eyewitness account and she heard the gun shots and did not hear a thing other than shooting.
Lets not jump on that handy, dandy bandwagon so fast.

Well, let's see. The person posting the story says:

Yet, no one could verify this was an actual 1st person eye witness account.

and the account says:

As I'm walking up to [the SRP building] the gunshots start.


So on one hand, we have an unsigned account by an unknown person who was not an eyewitness to the start of the shooting, who wasn't even in the building when the shooting started, who says nothing either way about "Allahu Akbar"... please tell me this is not your idea of a citation.

On the other hand, I have cited a person with a name who was there when the shooting started and has the bullet wounds to prove it, and he says Hasan did yell "Allahu Akbar".

Your choice.

intention
11-15-2009, 02:56 PM
Is shouting "Allahu akbar" before going on a killing spree evidence of being a terrorist or just evidence of being Muslim? If it's evidence of being a terrorist, why?

It certainly doesn't prove that the person was a terrorist. It does add to all the other evidence that Hasan was deeply into radical jihad. It does provide us with a clue as to what was on his mind. He didn't shout "you bastards are putting mind altering poison in my Cheerios" or "Jim, you passed me over for promotion" ...

To me, and to US law, a terrorist is someone who uses violence or assassination to try to force people or the government to change their policies. Hasan wanted the Army to change its policies on Muslims serving in actions against Muslims. He warned of "adverse events" if they didn't change the policy. He created an adverse event, shouting "Allahu Akhbar" as he killed people he didn't even know.

When I connect the dots, I get "terrorist trying to change Army policy". However, if you have an alternate theory of why he killed all those folks, bring it on. He wasn't looking for revenge on an individual, he wasn't going postal to kill a supervisor who had done him wrong ... so if he wasn't trying to make a point of some kind, what was he doing?

Pray for peace
11-15-2009, 02:56 PM
Mother Jones has an article saying it . I also heard a witness on the radio say he heard no shouting at all. I know it would fit nicely into peoples preconceptions but I thing we should wait before we proclaim it actually happened. This is not Fox News yet.

Thank you for the cite. This (http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2009/11/fort-hood-letter) may be the article that you are referring to (please correct me if I am wrong).

I realize that this is Great Debates, but I wish it was possible to ask for a cite without people getting worked up about it. In my posts in this thread I have been saying that we do not yet know Hasan's motivations or mental state at the time of the crime; for this reason I have not advocated for or against the "terrorism" issue. I am trying to evaluate the available evidence and I encourage others to do the same.

intention
11-15-2009, 02:58 PM
Islam had nothing to do with it. If Islam per se caused people to become spree killers, then all Muslims would be spree killers. Therefore Islam doesnot cause people to be spree killers. It's pretty simple.

This guy was just nuts, pure and simple, just like the insane people who think Jesus wants them to kill doctors or invade Iraq.

Being nuts had nothing to do with it. If being nuts caused people to become spree killers, then all nuts would be spree killers. Therefore being nuts does not cause people to be spree killers. It's pretty simple.

Oh, good, very good.

Captain Amazing
11-15-2009, 03:08 PM
I realize that this is Great Debates, but I wish it was possible to ask for a cite without people getting worked up about it. In my posts in this thread I have been saying that we do not yet know Hasan's motivations or mental state at the time of the crime; for this reason I have not advocated for or against the "terrorism" issue. I am trying to evaluate the available evidence and I encourage others to do the same.

For what it's worth, I agree with you. I don't know why Hasan did what he did. I was just disagreeing with the denial of the possibility that it could have had something to do with his view of Islam.

gonzomax
11-15-2009, 03:10 PM
Thank you for the cite. This (http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2009/11/fort-hood-letter) may be the article that you are referring to (please correct me if I am wrong).

I realize that this is Great Debates, but I wish it was possible to ask for a cite without people getting worked up about it. In my posts in this thread I have been saying that we do not yet know Hasan's motivations or mental state at the time of the crime; for this reason I have not advocated for or against the "terrorism" issue. I am trying to evaluate the available evidence and I encourage others to do the same.

One of the articles. yes. I just say we have to wait. Hell, it might require until the trial. But we can not factually declare his motive at this point. Nor can we say with certainty what occurred.

intention
11-15-2009, 03:48 PM
... we can not factually declare his motive at this point. Nor can we say with certainty what occurred.

I agree completely, we don't know (and may never know) his motive.

However, we do have a good idea of his ideology ... radical jihadi. From the UK Telegraph:

Fort Hood gunman had told US military colleagues that infidels should have their throats cut
Major Nidal Malik Hasan, the gunman who killed 13 at America's Fort Hood military base, once gave a lecture to other doctors in which he said non-believers should be beheaded and have boiling oil poured down their throats.

By Nick Allen in Fort Hood
Published: 5:00PM GMT 08 Nov 2009

Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, the U.S. Army doctor named as a suspect in the shooting death of 13 people and the wounding of 31 others at Fort Hood, Texas Photo: GETTY
He also told colleagues at America's top military hospital that non-Muslims were infidels condemned to hell who should be set on fire. The outburst came during an hour-long talk Hasan, an Army psychiatrist, gave on the Koran in front of dozens of other doctors at Walter Reed Army Medical Centre in Washington DC, where he worked for six years before arriving at Fort Hood in July.

Colleagues had expected a discussion on a medical issue but were instead given an extremist interpretation of the Koran, which Hasan appeared to believe.

...

Fellow doctors have recounted how they were repeatedly harangued by Hasan about religion and that he openly claimed to be a "Muslim first and American second."

...

One of Hasan's neighbours described how on the day of the massacre, about 9am, he gave her a Koran and told her: "I'm going to do good work for God" before leaving for the base.

Says he is off "to do good work for God" before strapping on a gun in a no-gun zone and killing a bunch of unbelievers ... says he wants to cut of the heads of infidels and pour boiling oil down their throats ... says he is "Muslim first and American second" ... says "Allahu Akbar" before starting killing infidels ... is in touch with a number of radical jihadi organizations ... his Islamic spiritual mentor congratulates Hasan on his actions ... are we seeing a pattern here?

Dio upthread said that the Right is trying to exaggerate the "terrorist" aspect to bust Obama for this. I've looked around the web, and he's right. But that's just dumb. No way Obama is to blame in this one, no President could stop a lone gunman.

Unfortunately, the Left seems determined to minimize the whole thing because, like the Right, they also think it does reflect on Obama, so they play the "he's just a garden variety nutjob" card.

Me, I don't think it says anything about Obama either way, I think anyone who claims it does is a garden variety nutjob ... and I also think that Occam's Razor strongly suggests that Hasan is an Islamic terrorist.

John Mace
11-15-2009, 04:58 PM
This case might not fit neatly into one of our pre-determined boxes. He might well have been a metnally unstable Muslim-American in the military with issues about his career being in trouble. Whether or not he shouted Allahu Akbar doesn't add a whole lot to the discussion, since that can be used in so many contexts that it's almost meaningless in and of itself.

At this point, I have to go with "not enough information to say either way". However, saying that Islam had nothing to do with his actions is simply not recognizing reality. Problem is, too many people equate "Muslim killer" with "terrorist". This could easily be a classic case of workplace rage, even if Islam was at the center of the motivation. In my mind, workplace rage is more about revenge than anything else.

As for Christian fundamentalists shooting abortion doctors, I'd have to say that is almost certainly terrorism. Unless they had a singular beef with that one abortion doctor, they are clearly trying to strike fear in abortion doctors across the board.

tim314
11-15-2009, 05:02 PM
If he did it to try to achieve some sort of political goal, then I guess I'd say he's a terrorist. Otherwise I'd probably just call him a "spree killer". I don't think one is any better than the other, though.

Camus
11-15-2009, 08:56 PM
Problem is, too many people equate "Muslim killer" with "terrorist". This could easily be a classic case of workplace rage, even if Islam was at the center of the motivation. In my mind, workplace rage is more about revenge than anything else.


But that's just it - upon whom exactly was Hasan trying to exact revenge? And for what? The "going postal"/revenge motive just doesn't seem to fit all the facts that are available so far. There have been reports 1) from Hasan's family that he told them he was occasionally harassed for being a Muslim, 2) that he wanted Muslims in the military to have the option of becoming automatic conscientious objectors, and 3) that he was very much opposed to his deployment orders to Afghanistan. If anything, given these facts, it would have made more sense for him to have injured himself in some way so as to prevent him from being deployed. Driving up to a random grouping of people and soldiers with plenty of extra ammunition (after giving away many of his possessions and some copies of Qurans earlier in the day to his neighbors) doesn't add up as a revenge/postal massacre.

DoctorJ
11-15-2009, 10:08 PM
I would be curious to check out the legislators and commentators who are insisting that the Ft. Hood murders be labeled as "terrorism" and see how they feel about hate crime legislation.

The usual line against hate crime legislation is unnecessary because a crime is a crime, and we shouldn't prosecute someone based on what's in his head. Someone who is consistent about that should also find it unnecessary to label these crimes as "terrorism".

Personally, I think Hasan is most likely mentally ill, and as such his motives really can't be taken seriously. If I went out and shot a bunch of redheads because I wanted redheads to stop using gamma rays to read my thoughts, would that be a terrorist act against redheads? No; it would be a killing spree by a crazy man. Hasan's delusions just happen to be based in jihadist rhetoric.

That's not to say that mentally ill people can't commit terrorist acts, particularly when they've been planned by someone else who is taking advantage of that illness. But by and large, I'd save the label of "terrorism" for those with a reasonably firm grip on reality, and my impression is that Hasan doesn't really have that grip.

(And when I say he's probably mentally ill, I don't think he should get off easy. He should be locked up for the rest of his life, IMO. Even if he can be treated you can't take the chance that he'll do something like that again.)

Clothahump
11-15-2009, 11:09 PM
Are the actions of Major Hasan terrorism? Why or why not?

A Muslim terroristic act, no doubt about it.

CoolHandCox
11-15-2009, 11:12 PM
Another US definition of terrorism. Not a crime, but has been used for reporting purposes since 1983 of "terrorism" domestic and abroad; therefore, the Ft. Hood shooting incident could be reported as a terrorist incident, assuming it was "politically motivated" (whatever that means).

Navy Link (http://www.history.navy.mil/library/guides/terrorism.htm#definition) (cut n pasted below)

"No one definition of terrorism has gained universal acceptance. For the purposes of this report, however, we have chosen the definition of terrorism contained in Title 22 of the United States Code, Section 2656f(d). That statute contains the following definitions:

The term "terrorism" means premeditated, politically motivated violence perpetrated against noncombatant (1) targets by subnational groups or clandestine agents, usually intended to influence an audience.
...
(1) For purposes of this definition, the term "noncombatant" is interpreted to include, in addition to civilians, military personnel who at the time of the incident are unarmed and/or not on duty. For example, in past reports we have listed as terrorist incidents the murders of the following U.S. military personnel: Col. James Rowe, killed in Manila in April 1989; Capt. William Nordeen, U.S. defense attache killed in Athens in June 1988; the two servicemen killed in the La Belle disco bombing in West Berlin in April 1986; and the four off-duty U.S. Embassy Marine guards killed in a cafe in El Salvador in June 1985. We also consider as acts of terrorism attacks on military installations or on armed military personnel when a state of military hostilities does not exist at the site, such as bombings against U.S. bases in Europe, the Philippines, or elsewhere."

Diogenes the Cynic
11-16-2009, 12:10 AM
Basically it sounds like there's no way to really exclude anybody from the definition, because it's defined in whatever self-serving and arbitrary manner that the government (or anyone else) wants to define it. It's a word that basically has no definition but a demagogic one.

CoolHandCox
11-16-2009, 12:32 AM
Basically it sounds like there's no way to really exclude anybody from the definition, because it's defined in whatever self-serving and arbitrary manner that the government (or anyone else) wants to define it. It's a word that basically has no definition but a demagogic one.

Basically. It appears to be undefinable, legally speaking. The CIA influences Gov't policy through violence. They're terrorists. The Columbine kids intimidated a civilian population by a criminal act. They're terrorists.

Being a murderer is so 20th century. It's just not enough anymore.

intention
11-16-2009, 02:30 AM
Basically it sounds like there's no way to really exclude anybody from the definition, because it's defined in whatever self-serving and arbitrary manner that the government (or anyone else) wants to define it. It's a word that basically has no definition but a demagogic one.Basically. It appears to be undefinable, legally speaking. The CIA influences Gov't policy through violence. They're terrorists. The Columbine kids intimidated a civilian population by a criminal act. They're terrorists.

Being a murderer is so 20th century. It's just not enough anymore.

Well, basically, no. You are both making the "everything is relative so we can't make any distinctions or definitions" argument.

Since terrorism is in fact very clearly defined, legally speaking, we can hardly say it is undefinable, legally speaking.

As someone pointed out above, the definition of terrorism is given in US law, specifically 18 USC 2331 (http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/18/usc_sec_18_00002331----000-.html). The kind we are discussing is "domestic terrorism", that is, terrorism occurring within the US.

(5) the term “domestic terrorism” means activities that—
(A) involve acts dangerous to human life that are a violation of the criminal laws of the United States or of any State;
(B) appear to be intended—
(i) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population;
(ii) to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or
(iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or kidnapping; and
(C) occur primarily within the territorial jurisdiction of the United States.

AFAIK, the Columbine kids were not looking to influence anyone, they were looking for revenge on the kids that had taunted them. Not terrorism.

CIA violence might or might not be terrorism, depending on where, when, and how. If they secretly whack a drug dealer in Ciudad Juarez, no. No intimidation, no coercion. If they whack the President of Chile, definitely. Assassination affecting the conduct of a government. But they're not covered by our discussion of domestic terrorism ... at least I hope not ...

In any case, I don't buy your "I am you, as you are me, as you are he, as we are all together" Beatles argument for saying that terrorism is whatever we say it is and any violence may or may not be terrorism. Some is, some isn't, and the law is pretty clear on the difference.

CoolHandCox
11-16-2009, 02:06 PM
Well, basically, no. You are both making the "everything is relative so we can't make any distinctions or definitions" argument.

Since terrorism is in fact very clearly defined, legally speaking, we can hardly say it is undefinable, legally speaking.

As someone pointed out above, the definition of terrorism is given in US law, specifically 18 USC 2331 (http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/18/usc_sec_18_00002331----000-.html). The kind we are discussing is "domestic terrorism", that is, terrorism occurring within the US.

AFAIK, the Columbine kids were not looking to influence anyone, they were looking for revenge on the kids that had taunted them. Not terrorism.

CIA violence might or might not be terrorism, depending on where, when, and how. If they secretly whack a drug dealer in Ciudad Juarez, no. No intimidation, no coercion. If they whack the President of Chile, definitely. Assassination affecting the conduct of a government. But they're not covered by our discussion of domestic terrorism ... at least I hope not ...

In any case, I don't buy your "I am you, as you are me, as you are he, as we are all together" Beatles argument for saying that terrorism is whatever we say it is and any violence may or may not be terrorism. Some is, some isn't, and the law is pretty clear on the difference.

Yes. That's how the US defines the crime of terrorism, I'm merely saying every country defines it differently (even the US uses two different defintions as I pointed out earlier). I'm suggesting it's hard to define without being over-broad or under-inclusive.

Under US law, the Columbine kids would be terrorists:

(A) involve acts dangerous to human life that violate criminal law (murder)
(B) appear to be intended to intimidate a civilian population (appears they intended to intimidate high school students)
(C) occur primarily within the United States. (Colorado)

The CIA would too; whenever that organization tries to influence Government policy through violence.

I don't mind that the Ft. Hood shooter is being called a terrorist for the reasons being suggested (it's not that big of a stretch anyways), my only problem is the label terrorist is not applied according the legal defintion, but to certain select groups of people. The US law is overbroad and people who we don't think of as "terrorists" definetly violate the law (or it's no more of a stretch than Major Hasan).

gonzomax
11-16-2009, 02:22 PM
Please flesh out your defense of B. I don't see future intimidation of bullies being relevant. Once the Columbine shooters were killed or jailed ,the threat was gone. I see it an an angry revenge shooting.

intention
11-16-2009, 02:22 PM
Yes. That's how the US defines the crime of terrorism, I'm merely saying every country defines it differently (even the US uses two different defintions as I pointed out earlier). I'm suggesting it's hard to define without being over-broad or under-inclusive.

Under US law, the Columbine kids would be terrorists:

(A) involve acts dangerous to human life that violate criminal law (murder)
(B) appear to be intended to intimidate a civilian population (appears they intended to intimidate high school students)
(C) occur primarily within the United States. (Colorado)

The CIA would too; whenever that organization tries to influence Government policy through violence.

I don't mind that the Ft. Hood shooter is being called a terrorist for the reasons being suggested (it's not that big of a stretch anyways), my only problem is the label terrorist is not applied according the legal defintion, but to certain select groups of people. The US law is overbroad and people who we don't think of as "terrorists" definetly violate the law (or it's no more of a stretch than Major Hasan).

To me, your interpretation of the law is way over-broad.

The issue is not whether the act is intimidating. Any violence is intimidating. It is whether the intimidation is a deliberate attempt to influence public policy. It is not whether the act scares people. It is whether the act is deliberately designed to scare them into taking some particular action that you desire.

I don't think Columbine fits that definition. Like all law, there are gray areas, but not much violence inside the US appears to me to be designed to frighten people into submission, to scare folks into changing policy or into doing/not doing something in the future. Abortion murders and the McVeigh bombing, yes. They have/had a definite policy goal. Folks going postal, whether at Columbine or in the Post Office, no. Mafia intimidation of witnesses, yes. John Wayne Gacy, no.

Like all gradations, of course, the further from the center, the clearer the issue becomes. And because it involves motive rather than actions, it is never entirely clear. Hasan could come out and say "I wanted to infuence army policy to spare future Muslims who found themselves in my position", or he could say "I was angry at the color khaki so I decided to kill as many people wearing khaki as I could". This being the US, where taking responsibility for one's actions is a lost art, he'll probably say "I really don't remember, I saw everything in funny colors and thought I was back on the farm killing chickens, it was just a heartfelt plea for help," whether that is true or not.

Diogenes the Cynic
11-16-2009, 02:27 PM
This was absolutely in the "postal" category.

CoolHandCox
11-16-2009, 02:43 PM
To me, your interpretation of the law is way over-broad.

The issue is not whether the act is intimidating. Any violence is intimidating. It is whether the intimidation is a deliberate attempt to influence public policy. It is not whether the act scares people. It is whether the act is deliberately designed to scare them into taking some particular action that you desire.

I want to ask you about one quick point. How are you interpreting "appear intended to intimidate a civilian population" to require an influence of public policy?

I've admittedly only read the statute, if there's caselaw or whatever that adds the influence public policy requirement let me know. It very well could.

Pray for peace
11-16-2009, 05:17 PM
I want to ask you about one quick point. How are you interpreting "appear intended to intimidate a civilian population" to require an influence of public policy?

I've admittedly only read the statute, if there's caselaw or whatever that adds the influence public policy requirement let me know. It very well could.

Although they don't address the question of statutory interpretation or caselaw, recent memos from the Department of Homeland Security regarding domestic terrorism threats due to right wing (http://www.fas.org/irp/eprint/rightwing.pdf) (warning: PDF) and left wing (http://www.foxnews.com/projects/pdf/Leftwing_Extremist_Threat.pdf) (warning: PDF) extremists may give some insight regarding current federal policy on domestic terrorism. I'm hedging with "may" there because I've only skimmed them so far (and I won't be able to give them a closer read until later tonight) but they seem to be pertinent.

intention
11-17-2009, 01:29 AM
I want to ask you about one quick point. How are you interpreting "appear intended to intimidate a civilian population" to require an influence of public policy?

I've admittedly only read the statute, if there's caselaw or whatever that adds the influence public policy requirement let me know. It very well could.

The point is not the intimidation. If someone is murdered in a neighborhood, people in the area may be intimidated from going out on the street. But that doesn't make it terrorism.

The point is to intimidate a group into doing something. Typically, although as you point out not exclusively, this is to intimidate people into changing some policy with public implications.

Boyo Jim
11-17-2009, 08:51 AM
The point is not the intimidation. If someone is murdered in a neighborhood, people in the area may be intimidated from going out on the street. But that doesn't make it terrorism.

The point is to intimidate a group into doing something. Typically, although as you point out not exclusively, this is to intimidate people into changing some policy with public implications.

You're wrong. The point is not at all necessarily about changing public policy, sometimes the point IS intimidation -- and often to stop people from doing things. For example, killing doctors who perform abortions. That's not about changing abortion law, it's about making doctors afraid to perform them.

I attended a conference on terrorism back in the late 80s. Though the subject was international rather than domestic terrorism, their major goal was to define it. And they failed, in large part because attendees from the State Department (which funded it) insisted that the definition included certain acts and excluded others.

The government reps insisted that the bombing of the Marine barracks in Beirut was terrorism, becuase there were indeed a few civilians killed in and around the building. The academics who atended were virtually unanimous that it was not terrorism -- it was a pretty straightforward military strike at a military target with an unconventional weapon. The government folks also insisted that the airstrike on Libya that struck Qadaffi's home and killed his daughter, as well as hit various strickly military targets, was not terrorism. In this attack as well, numerous civilians in the vicinity of the attacks were killed.

The other area of controversy involved the Contras in Nicaragua. Their attacks against civilian infrastructure were not terrorism, according to the State Department.

The general sense of people was that the main differences between all these acts was who was setting off the bombs, or in the case of the Contras, paying for them. The US goverment, though it wouldn't explicitly say so, had a rather Nixonian view of terrorism. "If we do it, it isn't terrorism."

I would add to all this that there was a pretty strong consensus that terrorists strike at civilian targets, and if the strike is aimed at a military target, it is more and act of war, not terrorism.

CoolHandCox
11-17-2009, 08:55 AM
The point is not the intimidation. If someone is murdered in a neighborhood, people in the area may be intimidated from going out on the street. But that doesn't make it terrorism.

The point is to intimidate a group into doing something. Typically, although as you point out not exclusively, this is to intimidate people into changing some policy with public implications.

Fair enough. I actually like that definition because it's more restrictive.

I'm only pointing out that under the definition in 18 USC 2331, the Columbine kids could be argued to be terrorists.

Pray for peace
11-17-2009, 09:16 AM
Basically it sounds like there's no way to really exclude anybody from the definition, because it's defined in whatever self-serving and arbitrary manner that the government (or anyone else) wants to define it. It's a word that basically has no definition but a demagogic one.

Even if the U.S. statutory definition(s) of terrorism are not specific enough, it may not matter much, since most "terrorists" are prosecuted for other crimes, like murder or conspiracy or weapons violations, rather than terrorism.

The Department of Homeland Security provides funding for a an open-source database housed at the University of Maryland called the Global Terrorism Database (GTD) (http://www.start.umd.edu/gtd/), which contains information relating to domestic and international terrorist attacks from 1970 onward. Conveniently, "the GTD does not purport to represent the official position, inclusion decisions, or information holdings of the Department of Homeland Security, the National Institute of Justice, or any other funding agency." But their definition of "terrorism" is more nuanced than others mentioned here (see quoted text at the end of this post), and, interestingly, the Columbine shooting is included in the database (http://www.start.umd.edu/gtd/search/IncidentSummary.aspx?gtdid=199904200004), but it is flagged as a difficult-to-categorize case (it is marked in the database as “Doubt Terrorism Proper?”)

The existence of a "Yes" for "Doubt Terrorism Proper?" records reservation, in the eyes of GTD analysts, that the incident in question is truly terrorism. Such uncertainty, however, was not deemed to be sufficient to disqualify the incident from inclusion into the GTD. Furthermore, such a determination of doubt is subsequently coded by GTD analysts as conforming to one of four possible alternative designations: 1) Insurgency/Guerilla Action; 2) Internecine Conflict Action; 3) Mass Murder; or 4) Purely Criminal Act.

The GTD provides “Mass Murder” as the alternate designation for Columbine. Other mass murders, e.g., serial killers or “going postal” workplace shootings, do not appear to be included in the GTD, so in the view of the social scientists who administer the database there is a meaningful difference between Columbine and the other mass murders I mentioned.

As a final point, I noticed that there is no parameter in the database to select “yes” or “no” for “nutjob.” So maybe being a nutjob doesn’t matter? Or it is presumed?

In the absence of a universally accepted definition of terrorism, GTD uses various coded criteria to cover a broad range of definitions of terrorism through a combination of inclusiveness and filtering. The goal is to have a data set that is useful to as many interested users as possible.

GTD Inclusion Criteria – GTD Codebook 3.0 May 2009

In order to consider an incident for inclusion in the GTD, all three of the following
attributes must be present:

1. The incident must be intentional – the result of a conscious calculation on the part of a perpetrator.

2. The incident must entail some level of violence or threat of violence - including property violence, as well as violence against people.

3. The perpetrators of the incidents must by sub-national actors. This database does not include acts of state terrorism.

In addition, at least two of the following three criteria must be present for an
incident to be included in the GTD:

Criterion 1: The act must be aimed at attaining a political, economic,
religious, or social goal. In terms of economic goals, the exclusive pursuit of profit does not satisfy this criterion. It must involve the pursuit of more profound, systemic economic change. This criterion is not satisfied in those cases where the perpetrator(s) acted out of a pure profit motive or from an idiosyncratic personal motive unconnected with broader societal change.

Criterion 2: There must be evidence of an intention to coerce, intimidate, or convey some other message to a larger audience (or audiences) than the immediate victims. Such evidence can include (but is not limited to) the following: pre- or post-attack statements by the perpetrator(s), past behavior by the perpetrators, or the particular nature of the target, weapon, or attack type. It is the act taken as a totality that is considered, irrespective if every individual involved in carrying out the act was aware of this intention. As long as any of the planners or decision-makers behind the attack intended to coerce, intimidate or publicize, the intentionality criterion is met.

Criterion 3: The action must be outside the context of legitimate warfare activities. That is, the act must be outside the parameters permitted by international humanitarian law (particularly the prohibition against deliberately targeting civilians or non-combatants).