“The Army’s preferential treatment of Major Hasan – notwithstanding his open extremism and support for religious violence – and the FBI’s refusal to interview Hasan or notify his superiors of his multiple communications with the notorious terrorist leader Anwar al-Awlaki, apparently because of political sensitivities in the Washington Field Office, led to the Fort Hood attack. Frankly, we are deeply concerned that the same considerations of ‘political correctness’ that caused the horrible toll of deaths and injuries at Fort Hood have also informed the Army’s decision to deem his attack an act of ‘workplace violence.’”
The two Republicans and Democrat called the “workplace violence” classification “an irresponsible, indefensible breach of our nation’s sacred pledge to our service members.”
That designation not only makes the victims ineligible for Purple Hearts but puts a host of healthcare and counseling services out of the reach of victims and family members.
“At this stage, designating the victims’ deaths and injuries as ‘combat-related’ is a necessary and appropriate first step of good faith by your Department. Such a designation would be tangible evidence that our government keeps its promises, albeit years after the fact. Furthermore, a ‘combat-related’ designation is a necessary condition for the heroes of that day, and their families who survive them, to finally begin the process of healing,” the lawmakers wrote.
“Therefore, we respectfully request that you reclassify the terrorist attack at Fort Hood as ‘combat-related’ in support of the victims, survivors and their families who have to suffer the effects of this horrifying incident every day. The current ‘workplace violence’ designation is a distortion of the truth that discredits our military, and it should be overturned immediately.”
If you want to tweet thanks to Fattah for standing up for Fort Hood victims, he’s @chakafattah.