The trial of the former army major who carried out the worst killing spree on a U.S. military base in history will begin on Tuesday. While shouting "Allahu akbar," Nidal Hasan used a high-powered pistol to kill 13 people and wound 32 others at the Fort Hood military base in Killeen, Texas, on Nov. 5, 2009. He is facing a potential death sentence.
Before the attack, Hasan had said the U.S. was waging a "war on Islam," endorsed suicide bombers and defended Osama bin Laden. While he was a graduate student, he warned classmates that Muslim-American troops might be obliged to kill their comrades. He also reportedly had exchanged emails with the late Yemen-based al-Qaida cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, The Province reported.
A group made up of victims and their families are saying that the government should have seen the warning signs and are suing for $750 million and demanding that the military "meet its responsibilities to those harmed by its negligence."
Reed Rubinstein, their lawyer, said that "political correctness" was to blame for what happened. "The government afforded Hasan preferential treatment because of his ethnicity and his religion," said Mr. Rubinstein. "The rules on the conduct of military officers were ignored. He was a terrible physician and had no business treating soldiers. Yet because of where he came from, and how he prayed to his god, they promoted him and set him loose and ignored his very open, very obvious jihadism."
The victims allege that U.S. government has declined to deliver them "justice, decency or respect."
"From the start, the government has aimed to cover up the Army's failures, protect high-ranking officials from criticism, and preserve the very policies of preference and political correctness that made the terror attack possible," the victims said in a statement. "That cover-up continues today."