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"Bad Intelligence" and Fort Hood (9/11 Redux)


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Remember when everyone said, "9/11 intelligence lapses will never occur again"? Remember when everyone said, "We are going to break down the walls to sharing within the intelligence agency?" Remember when we created a National Joint Terrorist Task Force within the FBI to allow the intelligence community to "connect the dots"?

Well, a part of the Fort Hood investigation is likely to show that the national intelligence organizations still aren't "sharing" enough information. Actually, the problem may be that the agencies in "need" of the information may not be asking for it. However we want to finger-point; I think it is fair that we need to ask a few relevant questions of the intelligence community?

- Why aren't you going after all of the information?

- How come the DCIS (which would represent the Army at the JTTR) didn't ask for more information from the FBI on Hasan's contact with a radical Yemeni clinic?

Additionally, there are other questions that are going to be raising within the army regarding the tolerance of extreme views. In 1996 the Army was quick to be reactiive regarding the murder of an African American couple by white supremists, and updated their guidelines on dealing with soldiers with extremist views. The Hasan case is likely to lead to further update. One positive from this comparison insides the Army is the comparison of radical Islam to KKK. I'm surprised I haven't seen this meme further; but I think it is the right analogy to use in this situation. Just like the KKK spread (I'm not sure how active it is now) by a narrative of injustice to whites, radical Islam spreads by the narrative of injustice to Muslims. Just like white America was horrified by the acts of the KKK, so too Muslim America must be horrified by the acts of the jihadis.

While the Army has been proactive in addressing gangs in the military, I'm not sure they had much thought of a jihadi in their ranks prior to the Hasan attack.

Unfortunately, this type of "lone wolf" attack is the hardest to prevent (compared to a large conspiratorial group), and the best way of prevention may be to identify the social warning signs of radicalism.

(Most of this thought was coagitated while I listened to a Senate hearing on a plane tonight).

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It was part of the 9/11 Commission recommendations. There was strong implication that this situation would never happen again. To be fair the intelligence community has been breaking up a number of terrorist plots, in 2009 there were something like 9 different plots that have been foiled.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Initial review by the military is out.


Officials: Pentagon report faults Hasan's bosses

Anne Gearan

As many as eight Army officers could face discipline for failing to do anything when the alleged shooter in the Fort Hood rampage displayed erratic behavior early in his military career, two officials familiar with the case said.

Defense Secretary Robert Gates was expected to refer findings on the officers to the Army for further inquiry and possible punishment. The report on what went wrong in the case of Army Maj. Nidal Hasan, who is accused in the shootings that killed 13 people at the Texas Army base on Nov. 5, is expected to be released Friday.

Several midlevel officers overlooked or failed to act on red flags in Hasan's lax work habits and fixation on religion, the officials said Thursday. Hasan was an odd duck and a loner who was passed along from office to office and job to job despite professional failings that included missed or failed exams and physical fitness requirements, the review found.

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