WASHINGTON – Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Chairman Joe Lieberman, ID-Conn., and Ranking Member Susan Collins, R-Me., released the following statements about the discipline of nine Army officials in the wake of the Fort Hood attack by Major Nidal Hasan:
“Our Fort Hood report documents Major Nidal Hasan’s drift towards violent Islamist extremism and the poor judgment of his superiors who failed again and again to take disciplinary action against him,” Lieberman said. Unbelievably, they distorted his radicalization into an advantage for the Army and the United States. The FBI relied on these reports to conclude Hasan was not a threat, when, in fact, he was a traitor and a terrorist. The discipline which the Army has imposed on these nine of Hasan’s superiors will send a clear message to everyone that the Army will not tolerate such negligence and passivity in reaction to clear signs that a soldier is radicalizing to violent Islamist extremism.”
Collins said: “As our committee’s report made clear: both the Department of Defense and the FBI collectively had sufficient information to have detected Major Hasan’s radicalization to violent Islamist extremism, yet they failed to act effectively on the many red flags signaling that he had become a potential threat. Due to multiple misjudgments and failures, actions that might have prevented his attacks were not taken. DoD failed to act on Hasan’s obvious radicalization by either disciplining him or discharging him – actions that could have been taken under existing personnel and extremism policies. Hasan’s increasing extremism was well known to his supervisors and colleagues at Walter Reed as was his poor performance.
“Hasan traced a clear path toward radicalization in plain view of his fellow Army officers, and his revelations of his acceptance of this violent ideology disturbed his colleagues. Two officers described Hasan as a “ticking time bomb.”
“It is alarming that these warning signs were missed. I commend Secretary McHugh for taking necessary action to hold accountable those who saw the warning signs but failed to take action.”