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Shrinking The Psychiatrist: The Ongoing Case of Dr. Nidal Malik Hasan

Major Hasan has been charged in court martial proceedings with 13 acts of murder. He may be charged with a 14th killing since one of his victims, Francheska Velez, was pregnant. Will any of my friends sympathetic to abortion object if this fetus turns out to have been killed? Well, you get the point. Another diversion will come when, as is likely, the prosecution asks for the death penalty. Myself, I'd rather forego capital punishment than get the country dragged into one of those hysterical side shows.

If it turns out that his terrorist romp was linked to others in the religious mass murder business his trial would probably go into the civilian criminal justice system. Either way, I believe, the truth is out: this was no ordinary homicide. 

It was one of thousands of bloodlettings inspired by Islamic motives over the last decades. You can now add 51 victims to the dealing death and maiming numbers inspired by the "great God" invoked by Hasan as he delivered his first gunfire volley. I am afraid that even the ever-so-fair, ever-eye-averting President Obama will have to reconsider his confidently euphonious message about belief and action in the Muslim orbit.

With all the damning evidence accumulating for this having been a distinct and rewarding religious experience for Hasan there are--I can see from the comments to my previous SPINES and from other sources--that readers still have to be persuaded away from the assuring soporific that he was merely a crank.

I know that some of you think ill of Charles Krauthammer because he often sided with George Bush. I think very highly of Charles: he's my friend and he is one of the great political analysts of the day. He's also a shrink. He knows how psychiatry helps us understand political actions and he also knows how it can divert us from essential truths.  Here's his column in this morning's Washington Post