Warning: If you are looking for politically correct stuff for the right or left wing, stop reading. This will be offensive to you. Frankly, it’s offensive to me; and I have made a career out of defending the indefensible in pursuit of breathing life into the Bill of Rights, protecting things like free speech.
On Nov. 5, 2009, decorated Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan killed 13 of his fellow U.S. servicemen and tried to kill at least 32 more. He did this to help Allah defend the world against the infidel government of the United States — the great Satan. This Satan is the same government that had put him through college and medical school after he, among other things, pledged his allegiance to it (the United States of America) and joined our army to help fight its enemies.
In August 2013 he admitted in open court what everyone who reads the news or watched the interviews of the victims already figured out: that he deliberately killed 13 human beings. With his admission, the fact that he will be convicted is a 100 percent certainty.
In my field of tax law, the government wins 95 percent of the time (unless I am defending the case). But in the field of mass murder, there has never been a defense verdict (unless life in prison, beating the death penalty, could be considered a “verdict” for the defense) in the history of the United States. In this case, even if he had not bragged about the killings, the numbers of strong witnesses against him would have sealed his statistically impossible burden to prove his own innocence. But even that is no problem. He has confessed, so he will be convicted. There is no chance of any other verdict coming out of that military court, nor would there be in any other court with jurors on it.
The only uncertainty about this case is what statements Hasan will continue to make during his “defense” and whether the soldiers sitting on his jury — who after the trial will go back to work with the survivors of this mass murder and their friends, defending this country — will even consider giving him anything other than the death penalty. My call is that he will get the death penalty.
In most cases I am opposed to the death penalty; but if I were on this jury, I would pull the plug on this dangerous, oath-breaking wackjob. I would bet that none of the jurors are going to be swayed to say “no” to the death penalty by any type of defense Hasan can put on. The jurors are going to view this shrink — who is violently crazy, who sucked off taxpayers for his whole adult life and who no doubt screwed up a lot of vets with PTSD as they were sent to him for medical and psychological help — just as I do: guilty. But it remains a remote possibility, nonetheless, that one juror will let Hasan live out the rest of his days at the expense of those he attacked, their families and country. Not likely. Just possible.
More than 40 years ago, when I was in college, I took my first and only college psychology class. I still remember the statistics about being mentally ill or having a problem and getting treatment that were used in the introduction of the book: More people got well without getting the treatment than got well with treatment. The professor also said that many people went to school taking his class to figure out their own personal problems. I figured that those who couldn’t ever figure out their personal problems kept taking the classes until they got a degree in psychiatry. It’s then that I decided to never take another psychology class. So let’s just say I am a skeptic on the whole field of mental health, even though I believe there are lunatics out there, like Hasan. I know that’s not politically correct. I apologize. If that offends you, I’m sorry. The purpose of this article isn’t to offend, but sometimes facts do; so maybe you should stop reading.
Retired Col. Terry Lee reported long ago that Hasan had been making remarks like “Muslims should stand up and fight the aggressors against Muslim,” meaning – unfairly, perhaps — us. Now, whichever side you take on this position, even if you think that the 2nd Amendment allows American citizens to store nuclear weapons in their homes for personal protection, in what world would sane people even consider letting someone like that possess a weapon, let alone be trained in its use, and be a member of the U.S. Armed Services?
The murderer who shot Congresswoman Gabby Gifford had a lot of strange behavior that went unassessed. The mass murderer who killed men, women and children in a movie theater was clearly dangerous and nuts. But he wasn’t in the military. He didn’t work every day with other so-called “mental experts.” He didn’t have a negative report from his six years at Walter Reed Hospital that supervisors were “deeply concerned about his inappropriate anti-American views.”
By the way, I support the right to have anti-American views and even burn the flag; that’s what it is to have the right of protected free speech. Sometimes, we don’t like the speech. What I don’t support is giving weapons to super crazy people. What really concerns me is our methodology for making sure we don’t have people like Hasan in the army or in hospitals or, frankly, even out in the streets running around. Yet being deeply involved with the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, how can I justify that?
I just know that the debate doesn’t seem to care much about the ongoing problem.
Some Cults Are Dangerous
In my book of strange religions, the Muslim faith to the extent it is based on the Koran — which is pretty radical — is just one step above the religion of Scientology, which is to say it’s very strange. I have some clients and friends who subscribe to both faiths, and we have had some exciting debates that typically conclude with each of us deciding we are right and the other is wrong and then going on to business. There is a park in London dedicated to people on both sides screaming these types of views at each other. I’ve watched this. It’s great entertainment. But the bottom line on the Koran, which I have read: If you are a woman or a Jew and you support this religion, as it is written up in that Bible, you’ve got some screws loose. I know there are Muslims who are peaceful, wonderful citizens because they don’t follow these scriptures verbatim. That is the sort of universal religious hypocrisy we all accept so that we can all get along together, and that’s OK. But if you hate Jews and Americans and you would like to kill a few in your spare time, if you think violating oaths is OK, if you think women should not have the right to inherit anything from their families, then you really shouldn’t be a shrink and you really shouldn’t be in the U.S. Army. We have a no-fly list with some very gentle people, without a dangerous bone in their body, on it. We keep them off the planes. But we let the known terrorists on the 9-11 planes. We have a major who majored in healing the mind in our army who hates our soldiers and who thinks Allah wants him to kill them. How do we know this? Well, gosh darn, we didn’t have to wait until he actually killed 13 soldiers. He announced it in front of witnesses, on multiple occasions.
The person I would like to see facing a court martial is the man or woman who recommended that Capt. Hasan be promoted to Maj. Hasan. Then I would like to see someone repay the money spent on Hasan’s apparently useless mental health education. Perhaps the university that gave him a degree could give us a refund.
And who was it that failed to listen to Col. Terry Lee, Hasan’s co-worker who called attention to his behavior? Court martial him or her, too. We need to change our priorities a little.
I love the 1st Amendment. I love the fact that we can have a religion in America as crazy as Scientology. But if the Scientologists start preaching that the alien they descended from billions of years ago wants to eradicate us, then when they apply for weapons or to be soldiers, they ought to have to answer some extra questions.
Final word for the talking heads: The press is complaining that Hasan has admitted to shooting the 13 murdered soldiers. I have nothing good to say about Hasan. But the fact that he has admitted to killing the 13 is not bad legal work. Telling the truth, which the jurors will most certainly figure out, is the only bet he has if he wants to get life and not death. It’s not a good bet. It’s like a 100,000-to-1 lottery, but it’s his only bet. He probably lost the death penalty issue when he killed the 13 in such a cruel and vicious way, and it is not likely any lawyer or group of lawyers could talk a military tribunal into mercy. But since the government conducted voir dire and he didn’t, it’s probably the end of that issue — except for the next few months of trial. That said, if a guilty murderer wants to plead guilty and he isn’t being coerced, can’t we just let him do it? The Constitution certainly doesn’t say he can’t.
— Michael Minns
(US~Observer exclusive — used by permission)