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Friday, November 6, 2009

Ruminating on Ft. Hood

John Lennon had a song called "Nobody Told Me," which talks about "strange days indeed." Thursday, November 5 was certainly one of them. By now everyone has probably heard about what happened at Ft. Hood, Texas. Just in case you haven't, an Army major, who is also a doctor, opened fire in the fort, killing 13 and wounding 30. Truly a sad day for our armed forces in general and the Army in specific, not to mention the victims and their families.

First heard about it in a post on Facebook. Went to cnn.com to see what the post was about and was shocked to read what had happened. My first inclination was it had to be terrorists who had gotten into the fort somehow. The article mentioned the suspect was in military fatigues and had been killed. Want to say it even mentioned there were three suspects. Sort of fits the "suicide bomber" mentality of the terrorists we generally read and hear about. Of course, later it came out there was only one guilty party, a major in the Army who was being prepared for deployment overseas. He was even a doctor who specializes in treating soldiers with post traumatic syndrome. He was also still alive.

There are several things which have really bothered me about this whole incident. In no particular order, they are:
  • This was done by a man who has taken an oath to do all he can to save lives. Most articles I've read said he is a pretty good doctor, too;
  • Not only that, he's taken an oath to be loyal to and serve the USA. By most accounts, he did this up until Thursday. If he feels this strongly, why didn't he just go AWOL rather than start pulling a trigger?;
  • Wondered if any of the victims had already survived a tour (or tours) in Iraq or Afghanistan only to be killed or wounded in a place where they should be safest by someone they should implicitly trust?;
  • Why was my first inclination this was the act of terrorists, more specifically Muslim terrorists? Is this a byproduct of 9/11, our times in general, or wanting to believe there was no way one of our citizens, much less a fellow soldier, would do this to our own troops?;
  • Will there now be a backlash against Muslims in our country? Hope not. Was glad to see Muslim organizations came out immediately to condemn what happened. Islam is no more responsible for terrorism than Christianity is whenever a doctor is killed for performing abortions. It's the individuals, not the religion;
  • The first article I read had a one-sentence paragraph to say President Obama had been notified of what happened. First instinct, "No joke. He's the commander in chief. Would certainly hope so." Second instinct, "Why is there a need to put that in the article?" Somehow doubt anyone felt better just because the president (and I mean any president in general) knew what was going on;

Will be interesting to see what comes out before all is said and done. Have already read articles saying he felt this was is a war against Islam and how people treated him unfairly because of his religion. Also read his family has come out to condemn his actions and say there's no excuse for what happened. Since he survived, we may get to hear his reasons for doing this straight from him. Maybe not. Will just have to wait and see. Haven't even heard how serious his wounds are.

Obviously, my thoughts and prayers go out to the victims and their families. An extra prayer goes out to Kimberly Munley. She's the police officer who ended the carnage by shooting the assailant. Shot him four times and ended up getting wounded herself in the process. Hope it's nothing serious and she recuperates soon. No telling how many people were saved by her heroism.

May it be God's will that our soldiers are protected no matter where they are, and may God bless the United States of America!

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