Friday, November 6, 2009

Major Nidal Malik Hasan Likely Suffered From Vicarious Trauma or Compassion Fatigue.


13 were shot to death and about 30 others wounded by Major Nidal Malik Hasan. Why? Certain clues are now being discovered that hopefully will lead to prevention of such future incidents. CNN published surveillance video from a 7-11 in Fort Hood that shows Hasan at the cashier's counter at about 6:20 a.m. on the morning of the shooting. He was dressed in traditional Arab garb. He ate his routine breakfast. There were no overt signs that he was about to shoot people. But what lurked beneath the surface?

The owner of the store knew "Major Nidal." Hasan was born in Virginia but was of Jordanian decent. Hasan asked the store owner whether he planned to attend Friday Islam prayers, to which the owner replied that he was too busy. While Hasan was a major in the Army, since 2001, he had been telling his family that he wanted to get out of the military because he had been taunted after 911. Hasan was scheduled to deploy to Iraq. According to his cousin's quote in the New York Times, "He was mortified by the idea of having to deploy... He had people telling him on a daily basis the horrors they saw over there."

Others such as Staff Sgt. Marc Molano, knew Hasan as a psychiatrist who treated soldiers for Hasan for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). While some find it hard to believe that Hasan could do such a thing, it was clear that he did not support the cause in Iraq. Shootings


One can only imagine all of the horror stories from soldiers who have come back from Iraq and Afghanistan that were shared with Hasan. Such trauma is also known as vicarious traumatization or compassion fatigue. (Attorneys sometimes see family members of loved ones who have been vicariously traumatized by a family member's severe injuries. But of course they don't go and murder a bunch of people!)


With Husan, there were clues that things were not right. Hasan received his appointment to the Army as a first lieutenant in June 1997 after graduating from Virginia Tech with a degree in biochemistry. Six years later, he graduated from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences' F. Edward Hebert School Of Medicine in Bethesda, Maryland. He did an internship and then a residency at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. In 2003 he was promoted to captain. In 2009 he was promoted to major. In 2009, Hasan completed a fellowship in disaster and preventive psychiatry. He had been awarded the National Defense Service Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and the Army Service Ribbon. Hasan had never been deployed outside the United States. But something was not right. Hasan posted internet comments where he compared suicide bombers to a soldiers who fall on a grenade to save the live of others. And there was the legal clues. Hasan sought legal advice to try to get out of the Army.


President Obama called the shootings "tragic" and "a horrific outburst of violence."
Texas Gov. Rick Perry ordered that all flags in the state be lowered to half-staff as a tribute to the victims. What do the rest of us say? How about: "Thanks for those who have served our county in our armed forces. We truly appreciate your service and sacrifice. For those who do not want to continue to serve, here are your discharge papers. For any citizen who does not want the freedoms of our great nation, here is a plane ticket and a permanent visa to the country of your choice."
Update 11-9-09: Reports have surfaced that Hasan attended the same Virginia Mosque that a couple of the 911 terrorists apparently attended. The deceased victim of the Ft. Hood massacre include: Michael Cahill, 62, a physician's assistant; Maj. Libardo Eduardo Caraveo, a psychologist from Woodbridge, Virginia; Army Staff Sgt.; Justin DeCrow, 32, from Plymouth, Indiana; Capt. John Gaffaney, a psychatricc nurse from San Diego, California; Spc. Frederick Greene, 29, from Mountain City, Tennessee; Spc. Jason Dean Hunt,22, from Tipton, Oklahoma; Pfc. Michael Pearson, 22, from Bolingbrook, Illinois; Capt. Russell Seager, 51, from Racine, Wisconsin; Pvt. Francheska Velez, 21 from Chicago, Illinois; Juanita L. Warman, from Havre De Grace, Maryland; and Spc. Kham Xiong, 23, from St. Paul, Minnesota.

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

This was one sick guy. He needed help.

Anonymous said...

How could someone trained to heal want to kill and mame?

Anonymous said...

Mental illness does not respect educational or professional boundaries.

Army Brat said...

His name appears on radical Internet postings. A fellow officer says he fought his deployment to Iraq. He argued with soldiers who supported U.S. wars. He required counseling as a medical student because of problems with patients. He was a time bomb!

Armed Forces Advocate said...

6 months ago, Hasan came to the attention of law enforcement because of Internet postings about suicide bombings and other threats. Posts equated suicide bombers to soldiers who throw themselves on a grenade to save the lives of their comrades.

It was NEVER determined for certain whether Hasan is the author of the posting. A formal investigation had not been done before the shooting. WHY NOT

Ms Calabaza said...

Terrorism.

Video Guy said...

The investigation will turn over every scrap of evidence until they find someone in his family that is affiliated with the next country Exxon wishes war against for their resources.

Remember this…we were friends with these people until Big oil no longer wished to pay a fair price for the oil and decided to steal it by overthrowing their governments and installing vicious dictators, then sell the oil to us for a hundred times the price.

If one beats a dog too much it will bite you…these people are guilty of one thing…living on top of our oil.

Anonymous said...

Little cranky today video guy?

If a dog is teased, one can expect it to bite. But murder of the innocent (by either side)is uncalled for in my view.

Donna said...

This is a tragedy. All Senior Leaders to include the President of the United States stated that we should not jump to conclusions. The horror that this man heard and the injuries he saw on a daily basis can have a negative impact on the human psyche. Until you have experienced what he did, or you are a qualified professional it is irresponsible for anyone to publish an ignorant response. I do not condone his actions, but I will reserve my opinion until there are facts to support it.

I will focus my attention on supporting those who have been innocently affected in this tragedy.

Anonymous said...

Hasan = Insane?

Anonymous said...

Donna, we are a country who judges the actions of another by a trial of our peers. By the letter or our great Constitution, we have not only the expertise, but the obligation to judge our peers. We don't know all of the facts, but we know a lot.

Fault is not just on Hasan. He was certainly sick. He should have been treated. Doctors are some of the worst patients. The blame also extends to the military to diagnosis and treat their own. If someone wants out as bad as this man apparently did, arrange for discharge with some sort of civilian obligation. But don't keep him in a position that adds to his disease. That is my opinion and I sincerely doubt there are too many additional facts that will change it at this time.

Scott

Legal Pub said...

Update 11-9-09: Reports have surfaced that Hasan attended the same Virginia Mosque that a couple of the 911 terrorists apparently attended. The deceased victim of the Ft. Hood massacre include: Michael Cahill, 62, a physician's assistant; Maj. Libardo Eduardo Caraveo, a psychologist from Woodbridge, Virginia; Army Staff Sgt.; Justin DeCrow, 32, from Plymouth, Indiana; Capt. John Gaffaney, a psychatricc nurse from San Diego, California; Spc. Frederick Greene, 29, from Mountain City, Tennessee; Spc. Jason Dean Hunt,22, from Tipton, Oklahoma; Pfc. Michael Pearson, 22, from Bolingbrook, Illinois; Capt. Russell Seager, 51, from Racine, Wisconsin; Pvt. Francheska Velez, 21 from Chicago, Illinois; Juanita L. Warman, from Havre De Grace, Maryland; and Spc. Kham Xiong, 23, from St. Paul, Minnesota.

Legal Pub said...

Why is our goverment so often behind the times. Sen. Joe Lieberman's IS NOW Calling for the investigation as word surfaced that Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan apparently attended the same Virginia mosque as two Sept. 11 hijackers in 2001. (NOTE LEGAL PUB WAS ONE OF THE FIRST TO REPORT THE CONNECTION.) Why weren't all of the followers who were present when a radical imam preached there? Whether Hasan associated with the hijackers is of a secondary concern. Find out now who else that is out there was associated with this group before there are more incidents with "sleeper cells."

Anonymous said...

Major malfunction in letting this major rise up throught the ranks.

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