The Hasan case should also have Americans marching in the streets. Beyond the horrific events of November 5, 2009, Hasan’s case contains within it a microcosm of the entire domestic and global threat we face from jihadism and Islamism…During his time at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, before he was transferred to Ft. Hood, Major Hasan was exceedingly vocal in his opposition to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. He openly opposed those wars based on his religious views. But nothing was done. Two years before the Ft. Hood attack, Major Hasan gave a PowerPoint presentation at Walter Reed titled “Why the War on Terror Is a War on Islam.” But nothing was done. Some of his fellow officers complained about him to their superiors. But nothing was done. The PowerPoint contained statements from Hasan such as, “It’s getting harder and harder for Muslims in the service to morally justify being in a military that seems constantly engaged against fellow Muslims.” It contained violent excerpts from the Koran. And Hasan’s PowerPoint concluded with a quote from Osama bin Laden: “We love death more than you love life.”…Hasan’s record at Ft. Hood includes telling his medical supervisor there that “she was an infidel who would be ‘ripped to shreds’ and ‘burn in hell’ because she was not Muslim.” But nothing was done. Nidal Hasan made personal business cards; they mentioned no affiliation with the United States military but underneath his name on the cards, listed his profession as “SOA,” or “Soldier of Allah.” But nothing was done. And, finally, Hasan was in frequent e-mail contact with Anwar al-Awlaki, the radical Muslim cleric who, even then, had been implicated in at least two other terrorist plots in America and had since fled to Yemen. But nothing was done. Indeed, taking all of this into account, it is difficult to imagine just what more Nidal Hasan could have done to broadcast his lethal views and intentions…After the slaughter, the chief of staff of the Army was asked about Muslims in the military and said, “Our diversity, not only in our army, but in our country, is a strength. And as horrific as this tragedy was, if our diversity becomes a casualty, I think that’s worse.” The Army’s top officer put “diversity” on a higher moral plane than innocent life. If we needed the faintest clue as to why Hasan kept being promoted and passed along, here it was: The politically correct ethic in the Army was one where any perceived threat against ethnic diversity in our military would be treated as worse than a threat against our troops, even on our homeland. Who would have thought such a postmodern view would take root in our nation’s military? But it has. Even the Pentagon’s after-action report gave support to this politically correct, multicultural triumph of ethics. In the 86 pages of the “Lessons from Fort Hood,” not once does the name Nidal Hasan get mentioned. Instead, he is referred to indeterminately, as “a gunman” — just like any other random perpetrator of homicide. But Hasan’s name is not the most glaringly absent name, phrase, or term in the report. The word “Islam” appears once, and its appearance comes only in a buried endnote, in the title of one of many scholarly papers. The word “Muslim” appears nowhere in the report. Nor does the word “jihad.” …Until we fully grasp what the millions of radical Islamists around the world and in America intend for us — death — we will be facing the same truth Winston Churchill had to deal with in Europe, much too late: Fascism in any form, be it political, theological, or both, is simply not something we can sleep through — not if we plan to survive it…For the sake of nothing less than our very survival, however, unless we take Hasan and all that he stands for, and all that led up to his actions, as seriously as we take much more frivolous cases and issues in our society, we will never win the domestic and the global war radical Islam has declared on us. Nidal Hasan knows this, as do the rest of our enemies. We still don’t.
Here’s a great takedown by Ed Morrissey of yesterday’s ridiculous “If You Send Your Kids to Private School, You’re a Bad Person” Slate piece. Money quote:
Frankly, this is one of the most honest expressions of what liberals believe to be the purpose of public schools I’ve ever read. It’s most certainly not about educating children, but about social norming … down to the lowest common denominator. Rather than finding ways to provide poor children an effective and productive education so that they can compete better for jobs and wealth down the road, we just need to make sure everyone gets the same lousy education.
The anti-fracking movement has officially jumped the shark. Mischa Barton has signed on to make an anti-fracking zombie movie. The last time Mischa Barton did anything good was this fantastic film, which is now featured frequently on Lifetime. You should stop while you’re ahead, Mischa.
When it comes to Obamacare, ignorance is bliss for young Americans.
Jason Riley on why unemployed blacks should cheer background checks.
The Obama administration took one on the chin earlier this month when a federal court ruled that companies may use criminal-background checks in hiring without being guilty of racial discrimination…The meat of the ruling, however, is the court’s blistering takedown of the government’s “expert” report, authored by an outside statistician who attempted to establish that Freeman’s criminal-background checks disproportionately harmed black job-seekers. Judge Titus described the report as “an egregious example of scientific dishonesty,” its analysis “laughable,” “skewed” and full of “cherry-picked data.” He concluded that the “mind-boggling-number of errors” rendered the EEOC’s “disparate impact conclusions worthless.” There are “simply no facts here to support a theory of disparate impact resulting from any identified, specific practice.”…An October 2006 study in the Journal of Law and Economics, “Perceived Criminality, Criminal Background Checks, and the Racial Hiring Practices of Employers,” found that “employers that check criminal backgrounds are in general more likely to hire African Americans,” according to Harry Holzer of Georgetown University and his two co-authors. “[T]he adverse consequence of employer-initiated background checks on the likelihood of hiring African Americans is more than offset by the positive effect of eliminating statistical discrimination.” These researchers surmise that employers who can screen for prison records are less likely to rely on prejudice when hiring. Blacks aren’t the only beneficiaries. Analyzing “employer willingness to hire other stigmatized groups of workers (such as workers with gaps in their employment history),” they found the same pattern. The results, they wrote, “suggest that in the absence of background checks, employers use race, gaps in employment history, and other perceived correlates of criminal activity to assess the likelihood of an applicant’s previous felony convictions and factor such assessments into the hiring decision.”
The Daily Caller hates pandas, loves America.
Oh, it’s ON now, little tyrant.
This chimpanzee won $10,000 in an art competition. What did you do today?
Great column, as usual, by Continetti.
What is the difference between these two conflicts? In the former one, the United States was a participant. And America’s actions produced the current end state that, while not optimal, is better than the status quo ante. The dictator of Iraq, his family, and his party are dead or disbarred. They will never again threaten their neighbors, gas their people, or restart their weapons programs. The world never will have to worry about Saddam Hussein becoming a nuclear power. Nor will the world have to worry, at least for the time being, about ethno-sectarian genocide in Iraq, about al Qaeda turning Anbar and Diyala Provinces into Salafist strongholds and training grounds, about an Iraq partitioned irrevocably and dangerously into three squabbling nations. In the latter conflict, the Syrian conflict, America has not participated at all…As I write this, after Assad has crossed the red line for the second time, the Obama administration is engaged in an oh-so-public debate over how best to respond. The president has offered to demonstrate proof of the chemical attack and the Assad regime’s culpability in it, while also saying any use of force will be “proportionate”—a “shot across the bow” (i.e., an intentional miss) that won’t target weapons caches but military facilities likely to be empty, and won’t influence the outcome of the civil war. Think about that: The president of the United States is saying he will deploy force only in so far as it has no actual effect on the situation on the ground. Instead the point is to “send a message” and, he hopes, deter the further use of chemical arms by a dictator who has used them on multiple occasions while slaughtering his people wholesale and turning his cities into piles of concrete, pipe, and ash. This, we are told, is how President Obama plans to heed “the lessons of Iraq.” And yet that raises the question of what the lessons of Iraq actually are. The Iraq war, as I recall, was meant to prevent the acquisition and use of weapons of mass destruction by a murderous dictator, and to prevent the possible transfer of such weapons to terrorists seeking to use them against the American homeland. Well, in Syria, there is no question that the dictator has weapons of mass destruction, or that he has used them, or that they might fall into the hands of al Qaeda elements. None of those things have happened, or will happen, in Iraq because we intervened. In Syria they already have happened, stand a good chance of happening again, and in the case of terrorists capturing WMD could happen if America continues to sit on her hands…Syria already is Iraq. It is Iraq if Saddam had remained in power, and it is Iraq if America had left prior to the surge. It is the worst of both worlds, and it grows worse by the day…Just do not tell me that inaction is heeding the lesson of Iraq. The lesson of Iraq is that America was willing to pay a high price to guarantee that the world’s worst tyrant would never lay his hands on the world’s worst weapons. The lesson of Iraq is that with the right resources and the right strategy, America defeated al Qaeda and Iranian-backed militias and brought a level of peace and, yes, freedom to Iraqis that they never before experienced. The lesson of Iraq, which we are seeing right now, in real time, is that in the absence of American commitment, freedom diminishes and al Qaeda reappears. Nor are the lessons of Iraq the only ones we should be heeding while we contemplate the mess in the Middle East. There is also the lesson of September 11, 2001. That lesson is simple. You may try to ignore evil. But it will not ignore you.
According to Josh Rogin, Obama refused to send gas masks to the Syrian opposition for over a year.
George Will on how Obama went off prompter and got us into war.
The administration now would do well to do something that the head of it has an irresistible urge not to do: Stop talking. If a fourth military intervention is coming, it will not be to decisively alter events, which we cannot do, in a nation vital to U.S. interests, which Syria is not. Rather, its purpose will be to rescue Obama from his words.
Sex boxes. Need I say more?
“Literally.” We’ve been using it wrong for centuries…literally.
Power-hungry men. Ambitious couples. Broken moral compasses. Pia Catton explores why Macbeth is so popular right now.
On a conceptual level, Mr. Ashford finds that “Macbeth” has special meaning in a time when instant fame is attainable. Macbeth and his wife see their path to glory, and they dive for it. “We do live in a world of people getting these once-in-a-lifetime opportunities. That’s what happens to the Macbeths,” Mr. Ashford said. “It’s a couple in the middle of their life. This is an opportunity.” Another parallel observed by Mr. Gualtieri, whose solo “Macbeth” was up against Mr. Cumming’s, is “Breaking Bad.” In an essay on the commentary website TheWeeklings.com, Mr. Gualtieri wrote of Macbeth and “Bad” antihero Walter White: “Both men know good from bad and struggle with their choices. Both know there are consequences. Both have powerful wives who influence their decisions (though in vastly different ways).” These days, any discussion of men choosing illegal or inappropriate behavior inevitably brings up Eliot Spitzer and Anthony Weiner. The comparison isn’t perfect (prostitutes and “selfies” are smaller gestures than killing your way to kingdom), but what’s pertinent is that voters have shown willingness to shrug off wrongdoing. “The time is right for ‘Macbeth’ because our culture encourages public glory over personal integrity,” said Mr. Gualtieri. “Macbeth throws away his honor, his integrity, for his ambition.”…Two things draw audiences to “Macbeth” no matter what, he said. First is the couple’s lust for political control. “There is always a fascination with the desire for power and the fear of corruption of power,” he said. Second is Shakespeare’s depiction of the Macbeth marriage. “They sacrifice everything to give to each other,” Mr. Moss said. “That’s why people go and see ‘Macbeth’ over and over instead of ‘Richard III.’ It has the tragedy of the family.”