Pentagon report on Ft. Hood massacre warns of “paralysis” caused by political correctness

Pentagon Releases Final Fort Hood Shooting Review
By Elaine Wilson
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Aug. 20, 2010—Pentagon officials today released the Defense Department’s report on lessons and recommendations resulting from the Nov. 5, 2009 jihadist slaughter of U.S. Army personnel by a Muslim Army officer at Fort Hood, Texas.

The report states that the Army’s commitment to ethnic and racial diversity at all costs pushed career-conscious Army brass to remain silent and do nothing when Maj. Nidal Hasan repeatedly and openly expressed his belief in jihad Holy War against infidels, his hostility to the United States, and his sympathy for terrorists, even after some of his fellow officers had stated concerns about him. Among its top recommendations the report urges a downgrading of the importance of diversity in the ranks and close screening of Muslim service members for jihadist beliefs….

Whoa, sorry! I don’t know what came over me. I must have slipped into a day dream, and thought we were living in a rational universe or something. Let’s start again.

Here’s the real story:

Pentagon Releases Final Fort Hood Shooting Review
By Elaine Wilson
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Aug. 20, 2010—Pentagon officials today released the Defense Department’s final review of recommendations issued by an independent panel in the wake of the Nov. 5, 2009, shooting spree on Fort Hood, Texas.

Among the department’s top priorities, as outlined in the review, are boosting on-base emergency response capabilities, improving law enforcement and force protection information sharing with partner agencies, and integrating force protection policy, a Defense Department news release said.

In a memorandum signed Aug. 18, Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said he carefully considered the panel’s recommendations—detailed in the report titled, “Protecting the Force: Lessons Learned from Fort Hood”—and is directing the department to take “appropriate action” to address the initiatives detailed in the follow-on review.

“I expect department leaders to place great priority on implementing these recommendations,” Gates said. All actions are aimed at contributing to the safety and health of military forces, the release said.

Army Maj. Nidal Hasan, an Army psychiatrist, allegedly opened fire at a Fort Hood facility where soldiers were processing for overseas deployments. He has been charged with 13 counts of murder and 32 counts of attempted murder.

“The tragic shooting of U.S. military personnel at Fort Hood … underscored the need for the [Defense Department] to thoroughly review its approach to force protection and to broaden its force protection policies, programs and procedures to go beyond their traditional focus on hostile external threats,” Gates said.

Earlier this year, an investigative panel detailed 79 recommendations in its report centered on improving force protection and tightening gaps in personnel policies, emergency response mass casualty preparedness and support to Defense Department health care providers. In April, Gates directed the Defense Department to immediately implement 26 of the 79 recommendations while a review of the remaining 53 recommendations continued.

The final review’s initiatives “will significantly improve the department’s ability to mitigate internal threats, ensure force protection, enable emergency response and provide care for victims and families,” Gates said.

The review puts forth “concrete actions” for the majority of the recommendations, Gates said. In some cases, however, further study will be required before the department can take additional steps.

In particular, he said, the department will strengthen its policies, programs and procedures in the following areas:

—Educating commanders about the symptoms of potential workplace violence and the tools available to them to address it;

—Ensuring commanders and supervisors have access to appropriate information in personnel records throughout a servicemember’s career;

—Improving law enforcement and force protection information sharing with partner agencies and among installations to ensure all relevant personnel are aware of and able to analyze and respond to potential threats;

—Expanding installations’ emergency response capabilities, including enabling enhanced 911 to notify dispatchers of a caller’s location, mass notification and warning systems to guide installation personnel and emergency responders to an emergency, and a common operating picture to ensure emergency responders have access to real-time information in a crisis;

—Integrating force protection policy through the creation of a consultative and policy-making body that will bring together the various entities across the department with force protection responsibilities; and

—Ensuring the department provides top-quality health care to servicemembers and health care providers by hiring additional health care providers, particularly in the mental health field, and ensuring health care providers receive appropriate post-deployment respite and time at home between deployments.

Gates also has directed the assistant secretary of defense for homeland defense and America’s security affairs to continue to lead the follow-on review and to provide regular progress reports to him.

The secretary also emphasized the importance of leadership and the need for intervention when necessary to ensure good order and discipline.

“Force protection, although critical, is not a substitute for leadership,” he said. “Leaders at every level in our military play a critical role.”

Gates pledged to provide leaders with the necessary tools to deal with potential issues among their ranks.

“As the department takes steps to strengthen its approach to force protection,” he said, “I ask leaders and commanders across the force to remain mindful of the unique requirements of the profession of arms –- that military service is grounded in an oath to support and defend our Constitution, but also may necessitate the sacrifice of some of the very rights we defend.”

[end of AFPS article]

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James P. writes:

All that meaningless bureaucratic jibber-jabber about “Protecting the Force” is useless if they don’t identify what threat they are “protecting the force” from.

If you think the problem is random “workplace violence”, then you will implement a set of generic, flaccid security policies that will be completely ineffectual at stopping jihadi infiltrators. In fact, these policies may even be counterproductive, since likely they will disarm everybody and make them easy targets for jihadi violence. Essentially, this would be the Pentagon version of airport security, which harasses everybody rather than focusing on the specific people who are most likely to cause problems. And that’s exactly what I expect them to do.

Far better to improve “emergency response mass casualty preparedness” than to prevent those “mass casualty events” in the first place by preventing jihadi infiltration. To do that would mean sacrificing our diversity, and anything is better than that!

Ferg writes:

OK, Larry, you got me with that lead in. I thought, “Finally”! I should have known better. I have little to add except to note the emphasis on helping victims’ families after the fact. I guess they expect more of these incidents in our modern, “diverse” military.

LA replies:

Did you feel used? :-)

Ferg replies:

Yes, but not abused. :-)

LA continues:

Also, regarding the report’s emphasis on helping victims after a Fort Hood-like massacre occurs, this is very much like John Kerry’s platform in 2004, where his main measures against Islamic terrorism were to beef up America’s first responders, i.e., firemen, emergency medical personnel and so on. He didn’t want to stop terrorist attacks, but to help the victims better after the terrorist attacks. That is the only way liberals can feel comfortable when dealing with threats from enemies and criminals—caring for the victims.

Anne A. writes:

James P. nails it. But who would have expected anything else. Gates (although not the worst) has never in his career showed any instinct other than to go along to get along. Nothing will change bureaucrats, because if any have any courage and integrity when they start, they are sufficiently beaten down by the time they reach a level where they could make a difference. The only hope is that at some point, large numbers of the American people will have had enough and start talking honestly. They’d better do that before they are hopelessly outnumbered by those vested in political “correctness.”

Barbara V. writes:

As they say, “I guess you can’t fix stupid.”

Posted by Lawrence Auster at August 23, 2010 11:16 AM | Send

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