His name appears on radical Internet postings. A fellow officer says he fought his deployment to Iraq and argued with soldiers who supported U.S. wars. He required counseling as a medical student because of problems with patients. And it’s claimed that he was criticized for his religious beliefs – for being a Muslim.
There are many unknowns about Nidal Malik Hasan, the army psychiatrist authorities say is responsible for the worst mass killing on a U.S. military base – at Fort Hood. Most of all, his motive.
Why did Maj. Hasan go on a shooting rampage, killing fellow soldiers? Why did he kill 12 soldiers and one civilian?
The Associated Press reported:
As if going off to war, Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan cleaned out his apartment, gave leftover frozen broccoli to one neighbor and called another to thank him for his friendship — common courtesies and routines of the departing soldier. Instead, authorities say, he went on the killing spree that left 13 people dead at Fort Hood, Texas.
The 39-year-old Army psychiatrist emerged as a study in contradictions: a polite man who stewed with discontent, a counselor who needed to be counseled himself, a professional healer now suspected of cutting down the fellow soldiers he was sworn to help.
Human Behavior Expert, Patrick Wanis, Ph.D. says the motives behind the killing of 13 people by the army pyschiatrist may be clearer and more obvious than most people realize. Patrick Wanis says Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan fits the profile of a mass murderer but may also have been a terrorist.
Patrick Wanis reveals there are various possible contributing factors that lead to a person becoming a mass killer and says that Army Psychiatrist Hasan fits the profile of a mass murderer.
Click on the link below to download and listen to the interview Patrick Wanis Ph.D. gave to 850 WFTL’s Russ Morley or read the transcription further below. Click here for the radio interview Pyschiatrist kills 13 soldiers
Transcription of the radio interview:
Male Speaker 1: As we do brief counseling and as we help our soldiers and families through this, it’s going to make it more of a challenge and we’ll be requesting additional help to deal with that.
Male Speaker 2: There was a single shooter that was shot multiple times at the scene.
Male Speaker 3: I ordered of the flags in our state to be along the path staff until Sunday and I ask that all of you keep these families and these individuals in your prayer.
Male Speaker 4: Female officer is alive and in stable condition. She’s believed to be the first responder who shot the suspect.
President Obama: We will make sure that we get answers to every single question about this horrible incident.
Male Speaker 6: Twelve dead and 31 wounded and they’re dispersed among the local hospitals here in the central Texas area.
Russ Morley: Well, you would have had to have been living under the New River Bridge not to have heard the story 100 times since yesterday afternoon at 1:30 where Major Nidal Malik Hasan opened fire in the readiness center at Fort Hood Texas with two handguns supposedly killing now 13, wounding 30 others. As of this morning, he lies in a hospital bed in stable condition as they try to sort this whole thing out. Just saw a recent video. On the television monitor behind me, he had been spotted in a convenience store not long before the shooting wearing typical Arab garb, a long white robe at that point in time, not his military uniform. I don’t know what that means. Maybe he’s trying to make some sense of it this morning as our Human Behavior Expert out of Miami, Dr. Patrick Wanis. Dr. Wanis, what do you make of all this so far?
Patrick Wanis: Well good morning, Russ. I don’t think that it’s that unusual if you look at all of the information we have thus far. He seems to fit the profile of a mass murderer. Now, I know that’s strange but if you listen to some of the information we have, because remember, we don’t have all the details yet but they did say that he had been taunted for being a Muslim, for his religion, possibly also for his ethnicity. He was not married so he may not have had a very good support system. It said he didn’t want to be deployed. It said that he seemed to be disillusioned with the war.
Now, put all this together, it starts to fit into the profile of a mass murderer. And I know we’ve talked about this before but it can include a possible exacerbation of aggressiveness and tendency to violence. We don’t know if he prescribed himself psychiatric medication. There’s a good chance that he has withdrawn socially because if he was being taunted, then who was his support system when he wasn’t living in his home state.
The next thing is did he develop a victim mentality or persecution complex? Was there extreme chronic stress? Yes, there was because he was treating people who were under extreme stress, being victims of the war or returning from the war. And so that would also have an effect on him because, we call that vicarious traumatization. We call that also extreme fatigue, compassion fatigue so the effect of him even helping other people would be that he would take on some of their symptoms, so that would raise his stress levels.
There may have been feelings of powerlessness, the fact that he couldn’t get out of being deployed or that he couldn’t do anything about the war. We don’t know what emotional support he had from friends and family. Obviously, there will be a list of grievances against various people if he had been taunted about his religion and his ethnicity. There’s also talk that he wanted to get out of the army so that could have left him with feelings of disappointment, frustration and maybe even failure. And obviously, you know, when you put all that together, he could have felt hopeless. He could have felt bad about life. He could have felt that there’s no way to redeem himself. Then he can start to plan and desire to have revenge and want to hurt the world that may have hurt him.
And, of course, he had access to weapons. So you put all that together. He fits the profile of a mass killer. Was there a terrorist aspect to this? We don’t know but I think it fits more into the situation that quite simply this is a guy who had been taunted, who have possibly been persecuted, didn’t believe in the war, didn’t want to go to war, didn’t have support, didn’t have anyone to turn to. And what does he do? He creates a plan of revenge.
Russ Morley: Well, Dr. Wanis, let me jump in here for a second because, you know, you can’t be all that empathetic, can you and be in the psychiatric profession or the psychology profession? Because all you’re going to hear is day after day about somebody else’s problems and what’s wrong with this and what’s wrong with that and he had counseled all these guys coming back telling probably horrific war stories and why they had post-traumatic stress disorder. But I mean don’t you have to have a little ice water in your veins to be in that profession?
Patrick Wanis: Well, the funny part is you have to be able to express empathy, yet you also have to be able to turn off. It is impossible to completely turn off when you are hearing real pain, real sorrow, real hurt, real deep, physical, mental and emotional pain from people returning from the war. You cannot turn off to that.
Russ Morley: Well, let me ask. Let me jump in again here because we only got a couple of minutes. But what’s the old expression, “doctor heal thyself”? Couldn’t he have seen these symptoms coming on and sought counseling himself saying, “Hey, listen, I got a problem here. Well, I’m a psychiatrist. The symptoms I’m manifesting are right out of the textbook. I’m in trouble.”
Patrick Wanis: Well, there’s two points here. Yes, he was empathetic according to reports of his patients. Why didn’t he see what was happening to him? It’s hard to say except if he was undergoing extreme stress, he may not have had mental clarity to realize and to be able to stand back and observe his own behavior and observe the way that it’s developing. So that’s not unusual. Remember, a medical doctor can get sick, so can a mental health professional become mentally and emotionally sick.
Russ Morley: Good point. Good point. What do you make of the fact that – I was just looking at some video a couple of minutes ago. They kind of traced his day and there were some pictures of him in a convenience store where he was dressed in Muslim garb, I guess, a couple of hours ago before going to the base there at Fort Hood. What do you make of that?
Patrick Wanis: There are two possibilities. One, did he do this everyday? Did he dress up that way every morning and, you know, engage in his own early morning prayers? So was this part of his ritual or was it different? If it was different, then it’s a sign. The second possibility is did he put on this garb because he went, “you know what, everyone is persecuting me so much about my religion, that makes me believe more in my religion and stand up more for my religion.” It’s the same thing. If you persecute a Christian, he’ll become – he’ll further, you know, place his feet in the ground and stand up for what he believes in. So that may have also been part of it.
The other rumor was that he had given away his house furniture and his copies of the Koran to neighbors. Now, if he was going to go out on a religious Jihad, why would he give away his Koran? He would take his Koran with him before he kills them. Final point, look at the people that he killed. The people that he killed were about to be deployed. So that tells you that did have some link to whatever his anger, his rage, his disappointment or his revenge was connected to, possibly, the fact that he was going to be deployed, he didn’t want to. So who does he take it out on? On the people that are also going to be deployed.
Russ Morley: Dr. Wanis, thanks for being on the call with us this morning. Dr. Patrick Wanis. By the way if you want to find out more about this man, this remarkable Human Behavior Expert, go to www.patrickwanis.com