In other words, the general flinched. No surprise there. Ft. Hood may have been a war zone that day but, with few exceptions (Texas Republicans Rep. John Carter and Sens. Kay Bailey Hutchinson and John Cornyn are pressing to see Purple Hearts awarded), neither our military nor our government has the courage to admit it.
There is a ripple effect. This Memorial Day, by U.S. government reckoning, by U.S. military non-fiat, the Ft. Hood fallen do not rate remembrance as war dead. As a result, there have been no Purple Hearts awarded to military dead and wounded (as there were to casualties of the 9/11 attacks), no combat death benefits awarded to their survivors, no recognition of Hasan's jihad. Indeed, as the general says, we may never even know why they died.
This is just the way our leadership wants it -- "senseless," as President Obama put it, describing another 2009 jihadist attack the U.S. government refuses to recognize as an act of war, this one in Little Rock in which Pvt. William Long was killed and Pvt. Quinton Ezeagwula was severely wounded outside a military recruiting station. The trial, which begins in July, is currently subject to a tug-of-war, almost literally, between the lawyers and defendant Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad. Prosecutor Larry Jegley is determined to prosecute Muhammad as "nothing but a street thug" accused of "just a drive-by shooting," defense attorneys want Muhammad to plead insanity, while Muhammad, a Muslim convert who may have studied with a jihadist imam in Yemen where he drew the attention of the FBI, is pleading, strenuously, to be tried as a sane, confessed jihadist. Like the US military, like the White House, the court seems to be pushing jihad, kicking and screaming in this case, down the memory hole.
Which makes you wonder: By next Memorial Day, who will remember?
Diana West is the author of "The Death of the Grown-up: How America's Arrested Development Is Bringing Down Western Civilization," and blogs at dianawest.net. She can be contacted via firstname.lastname@example.org.