Breaking: Massacre At Fort Hood
At Hot Air, Allahpundit writes:
No word yet motive, but the fact that at least three gunmen are involved already has Shuster and Miklaszewski mentioning similarities to the Fort Dix Six plot on MSNBC. Seven dead, 12 wounded so far. Supposedly two of the gunmen are still at large and one has fired shots at the SWAT team on the scene.
Stand by for updates.
Here are the early details from MSNBC:
At least seven people are dead and 12 wounded in a shooting at Fort Hood in Texas, the base's public affairs office told NBC News on Thursday.
The official would not give his name nor additional details. It was unknown whether victims are soldiers or civilians. One gunman was reportedly in custody and another was on the loose, NBC News said. A third shooter may be involved, according to NBC News affiliate KCEN, which said the person had opened fire on the SWAT team at the base.
KCEN reported that a policeman was among those shot.
KCEN in Waco reported that the second suspect may be holed up in a building on the post.
An Army spokesman at the Pentagon says the shootings began about 1:30 p.m. Thursday at a personnel and medical processing center at Fort Hood, the AP said.
The spokesman, Lieutenant Colonel Nathan Banks, says two shooters were apparently involved. There is no word yet on who they were, nor on identities of the dead, according to the AP.
Banks says the second incident took place at a theater on the sprawling base, the AP said.
He says it is too soon to tell whether there is any link to battle stress or repeated deployments. The Army is suffering a record high suicide rate and other signs of stress from fighting two wars, the AP said.
Greg Schannep, an aide to U.S. Rep. John Carter, told Statesman.com he was on the Army post to attend a graduation service. He said that as he neared the entrance of a building where the service was being held, a soldier with blood on his uniform ran past him and said a man was shooting.
Schannep said the shootings appeared to have occurred in a complex near a theater where the service was scheduled. He was with the injured soldier, who he said appeared to have been struck in the shoulder but did not have life-threatening injuries.
At 2:18 p.m., all workers at Fort Hood received this email alert from the post headquarters:
“Fort Hood is locked down. Units are advised to do 100 percent accountability. This is not a drill.”
Todd Martin, assistant for communications at the Killeen school district, said the district has seven elementary schools and two middle schools on the post itself.
“Those have been locked down since this began,” Martin said. The other schools in the district outside the post have not been locked down, he said.
The district serves Killeen, Fort Hood, Harker Heights and Nolanville.
The elementary campuses, which typically releases between 2:45 and 3:15 p.m. had a two-hour early release day scheduled for today, so some students already had gone home. District administrators did not know how many of the students from the elementary schools were still on campus.
It is unclear how long the schools will remain on lockdown or when students will be able to go home.
"Porphyrogenitus", the blogger at Winds of Change writes:
I'm here working at Casey Library on post, and we're on lock down as there was a shooting rampage (that's what people are calling it) at the SRP site at the former Sports USA down the street from us. Apparently 7 are dead and 15 injured. They're still trying to catch all the perpetrators. Pray for the victims and their families, please. Story here.
The aforementioned Statesman has already setup a Twitter feed for breaking news. Follow them at twitter.com/FtHoodShootings.
Update: Allahpundit has added numerous updates to his post at Hot Air:
Update: One of the shooters is alive and in custody. We should have a motive soon.
Update: MSNBC TV says two shooters are in custody now.
Update: CNN now says the death toll is nine.
Update: MSNBC’s story has been updated to say that four SWAT members were wounded in the shootout with the gunmen.
Update: Am hearing via Twitter that Fort Hood’s public affairs office says the earlier reports of a third shooter were wrong and were based on a second eyewitness report of the second shooter. Which means everyone’s in custody now.
Update: Heavy suspicions of a fragging grow heavier still. From Chuck Todd’s Twitter account: “More from NBC’s Pete Williams: US official says early reports are the man in custody is in the military, late 30s, with officer rank.”
Update: Press conference being held now. 12 dead, 31 wounded. No idea of motive yet but it sounds like both shooters are military. Or rather, were: One of the shooters is dead.
Update: Okay, wait, I misunderstood: According to MSNBC, there were three shooters. One is dead, two more are in custody. Has there ever been a case of “battle stress” that involved a conspiracy by multiple people?
Update: From Chuck Todd's Twitter feed: "The main #fthood suspect was a U.S. Army Major."
Update: From WOAI, a San Antonio NBC affiliate: "AP: The U.S. Army says 12 people have been killed and 31 wounded."
Update: From Jake Tapper of ABC: "Attn Texas tweeps: Scott & White Memorial Hospital says due to the recent events in #FtHood, it is in URGENT need of ALL blood types."
Update: ABC News Radio is reporting "Ft Hood suspect name is MAJOR Malik Nadal Hasan."
Update: This ABC article also lists suspect's name; further details:
Twelve people have been killed and 31 wounded in a shooting spree at a Texas military base by what officials believe was possibly carried out by an Army officer.
Gunman kills at least 7 and wounds 12 at Fort Hood.
The suspected gunman was identified as Major Malik Nadal Hasan. He was killed and two other suspects have been apprehended, Lt. Robert W. Cone said.
The gunman used two handguns, Cone said. He wasn't sure if the shooter reloaded the weapons during the attack.
The general called the attack "a terrible tragedy, stunning." He said the community was "absolutely devastated."
The extent of the injuries of victims "varies significantly," according to Cone.
President Obama called the Fort Hood shootings a "horrific outburst of violence."
"It if difficult enough to lose" soldiers overseas, but said it is "horrifying that they should lose their lives at an Army base in the U.S.," he said.
The president said "my prayers are with the wounded and the families of the fallen."
Cone said the motive for the attack, which took place just after 1:30 p.m. CT, is unclear.
Fort Hood, located just 60 miles north from Austin, is the largest U.S. military installation in the world, and has suffered the greatest number of caualities of all American bases in the war on Iraq.
Update: According to the Anchoress, "CBS says Ft. Hood shooter Maj. Hasan was licensed psychiatrist from Maryland."
Meanwhile, Hot Air adds, "Kay Bailey Hutchison apparently has info that Hasan was upset about being deployed to Iraq. Which, without further specifics as to why, doesn’t tell us much given the possible motives in play here."
Update: ABC notes that "shooter was shot by civilian law enforcement."
Update: There's a page at Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress that notes:
Nidal Hasan, M.D., M.P.H.
Fellow, Disaster and Preventive Psychiatry
Department of Psychiatry
F.Edward Hebert School of Medicine
Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences
That's also the photo of the alleged suspect that Matt Drudge is running with.
Update: Here's that Army Times report, which was being swamped by a Drudge-lanche earlier:
An Army psychiatrist was identified Thursday as one of the gunmen in a shooting rampage on Fort Hood, Texas, that left at least 12 people dead and up to 31 wounded.
One soldier, a suspect, was killed and two soldiers were taken into custody, according to base spokesman Lt. Gen. Bob Cone, who added that the three suspects were soldiers.
A Pentagon source identified the shooter as Army Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan; the source said Hasan was a psychiatrist recently reassigned from Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., to work with soldiers at Darnall Army Medical Center on Fort Hood. He was killed at the scene.
The Fort Hood Web site posted an alert that said, “Effective immediately, Fort Hood is closed.” The Web site said units at the base have been ordered to account for all personnel.
The site said, “This is not a drill. It is an emergency situation.”
Fort Hood was “asking for EMTs because it’s a mass casualty event,” said Hilary Shine, spokeswoman for the City of Killeen, where Fort Hood is located. “They are having issues getting on and off post because they’ve locked it down. Right now there are a lot of questions and confusion.”
Fort Hood is set up like its own city with its own fire, police and medical facilities, Shine said. It has not asked for Killeen police to assist, but the police are on call if needed, she said.
Fort Hood is halfway between Austin and Waco, Texas.
FBI agents are traveling to Fort Hood to assess the crime and work with the Army Criminal Investigation Division, which is the lead agency, said Supervisory Special Agent Jason Pack, a spokesman for the FBI.
White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said he told President Barack Obama about the shootings and the staff is trying to get details.
“I told him what we knew,” Gibbs said, adding that he awaited an update himself.
Update: The Galveston County Daily News has some further details of the attack. Note item at end of the passage excerpted below:
Tom Hunt, himself a former Army sergeant who was stationed at Fort Hood, said his son called about an hour after the shooting to tell him he was safe.
John Hunt, 27, serving with the 510th Combat Engineers, was with his platoon at the base’s Soldier Readiness Center where soldiers who are about to be deployed undergo medical screening. He was scheduled to deploy to Afghanistan in January.
But because John had broken his foot several weeks ago, he was sent outside and told to get some extra paperwork that would clear him for deployment. John was waiting in the parking lot of the center when the shooting started, his father said.
“Everybody started running and shouting, and he saw the wounded come out,” Tom Hunt said. “He didn’t hear the shooting, but he said it was ‘a bloody mess.’”
Hunt said his son told him he loaded up many of the wounded and drove them to the hospital. The wounded relayed what they saw inside when the shooting happened.
“They were telling him that one guy was shouting something in Arabic while he was shooting,” Tom Hunt said. “He couldn’t say much more than that.”
Update: The This Ain't Hell blog purports to have Hasan’s Officer Record Brief.
Update: Shepard Smith of Fox News interviews a former colleague of Hasan at the psych ward at Fort Hood who claims Hasan made statements along the lines of "Maybe the Muslims could stand up and fight against the aggressor", as the person who uploaded the clip to YouTube notes:
Update: Photos from aftermath at Fort Hood.
Federal law enforcement officials say the suspected Fort Hood, Texas, shooter had come to their attention at least six months ago because of Internet postings that discussed suicide bombings and other threats.The officials say the postings appeared to have been made by Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, who was killed during the shooting incident that left least 11 others dead and 31 wounded. The officials say they are still trying to confirm that he was the author. They say an official investigation was not opened.
The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the case.
One of the Web postings that authorities reviewed is a blog that equates suicide bombers with a soldier throwing himself on a grenade to save the lives of his comrades.
Meanwhile, Allahpundit at Hot Air links to another video of Shepard Smith on Fox News:
Update: The two suspects detained earlier were released, but according to Rep. John Carter, another one has just hauled in.
Update: Here’s another Shep interview that people are buzzing out, this one with Hasan’s cousin. The cousin says Hasan decided after 9/11 that he didn’t want to deploy overseas, that he heard horrific stories from returning soldiers, and that he was harassed by other soldiers.
Update: "Wretchard", our fellow PJ Express blogger at the Belmont Club asks, "When is religion indistinguishable from politics? When is politics indistinguishable from religion?"
Update: Huh: A Las Vegas CBS affiliate is reporting "Suspect not dead in Fort Hood shooting"; apparently news via press conference by Lt. General Cone. Mary Katharine Ham quotes Cone as saying:
"There was a confusion at the hospital" about Hasan's death. CID officer with him since apprehension.
Ace adds, "Now they are saying it's a single shooter, Hasan, and he is in the hospital", adding, "The officer who shot him was thought to be dead but she's alive and out of surgery."
Update: MSNBC reports:
An Army psychiatrist opened fire Thursday at Fort Hood, Texas, killing 12 people and wounding 31 others, military officials said.
The gunman, identified as Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, was wounded multiple times at the scene but was captured alive and was in stable condition, Lt. Gen. Robert W. Cone, commanding general of the Army’s III Corps, said at a press conference late Thursday.
Eleven of the victims died at the scene, military officials said. A 12th died later at a hospital, NBC station KCEN-TV of Waco reported. Cone said that most of those shots were military but two were civilians.
Update: The Austin-American Statesman notes, "Official: Fort Hood shooting suspect not dead":
Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, the suspect in the Fort Hood shootings, has not been killed and is in stable condition at a hospital, Lt. Gen. Bob Cone said at a press conference at Fort Hood.
He is in custody at an undisclosed hospital, Cone said.
Three soldiers taken into custody after the shootings were released, he said. Investigators believe Hasan acted alone.
“Evidence does not suggest this was a terrorist event,” Cone said.
The death toll from the attack remains 12 after another victim died, Cone said.
And speaking of the MSM narrative, Allahpundit adds that it's "congealing as we speak":
Assume you’re an eager beaver reporter who’s as anti-war as the next fellow in the newsroom. How do you frame a story about a murderous lunatic who’s never been deployed overseas to serve your agenda? Why, this way of course: “Fort Hood has felt strain of repeated deployments”.
Update: WaPo reports that Hasan is “very devout”:
Hasan attended the Muslim Community Center in Silver Spring and was “very devout,” according to Faizul Khan, a former imam at the center. Khan said Hasan attended prayers at least once a day, seven days a week, often in his Army fatigues.Khan also said Hasan applied to an annual matrimonial seminar that matches Muslims looking for spouses. “I don’t think he ever had a match, because he had too many conditions,” Khan said.
“We never got into details of worldly affairs or politics,” the former imam said of his conversations with Hasan. “Mostly religious questions. But there was nothing extremist in his questions. He never showed any frustration. . . . He never showed any . . . wish for vengeance on anybody.”
Update: Post also notes:
A co-worker at Walter Reed said Hasan would not allow his photo to be taken with female co-workers, which became an issue during Christmas season when employees often took group photos. Co-workers would find a solo photo of Hasan and post it on the bulletin board without his permission.
Lee told Fox News that Hasan "was hoping that President Obama would pull troops out. . . . When things weren't going that way, he became more agitated, more frustrated with the conflicts over there . . . he made his views well known about how he felt about the U.S. involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan."
And when he talked about fighting "the aggressor," his fellow soldiers "should stand up and help the armed forces in Iraq and in Afghanistan," Lee said.
Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas) told reporters after a briefing on the shootings that Hasan was born in Virginia to parents who immigrated from Jordan. The congressman said that Hasan "took a lot of advanced training in shooting."
Update: NPR has this item:
A source tells NPR's Joseph Shapiro that Hasan was put on probation early in his postgraduate work at the Uniformed Service University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Md. He was disciplined for proselytizing about his Muslim faith with patients and colleagues, according to the source, who worked with him at the time.
Update: The Rhetorican asks the question we're all wondering: "How Did Hasan Fall Through the Cracks?"
Update: Michelle Malkin lists other soldiers who have fallen through those proverbial cracks: "The massacre at Fort Hood and Muslim soldiers with attitude."
Update: Phyllis Chesler adds, "The Jihadist is Always the Victim."
“News Channel 25’s Henry Rosoff is reporting Nidal Malik Hasan’s neighbors who say Hasan was giving away all of his furniture and copies of the Qu’ ran Thursday morning. They also say he was supposed to deploy to Afghanistan in the coming days.”
Update (11:29 PM PST): I believe this mammoth post has run its course for the night. Barring any major developments during the rest of the evening, watch for additional updates on this topic to appear elsewhere on the blog proper.