November 9th, 2009
06:13 PM ET

Evening Buzz: Fort Hood Suspect – Terror Ties?

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/11/09/art.hasan.jpg caption="Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, the suspect in last week's Fort Hood mass shooting."]

Maureen Miller
AC360° Writer

We have new developments in the Fort Hood massacre. Tonight on 360° you'll get new insight on the alleged gunman, Maj.  Nidal Hasan.

We've learned Hasan may have first heard radical anti-American views at a Washington suburban mosque.

It's the same mosque where a former imam, Anwar al-Awlaki, was the subject of several federal investigations going back to the late 1990s, but he was never charged.

al-Awlaki was also mentioned in the 9/11 Commission Report for having close ties to two of the 9/11 hijackers. The report shows it's unclear if al-Awlaki knew the two were terrorists.

al-Awlaki now lives in Yemen, where he's praising the Fort Hood attacks on his web site. He writes of Hasan:

"He is a man of conscience who could not bear living the contradiction of being a Muslim and serving in an Army that is fighting against his own people."

Today the current imam at the mosque talked with CNN and denied any possible connections between al-Awlaki, the 9/11 hijackers and Maj. Nidal Hasan. The current imam is also shocked about the Fort Hood shootings.

"I couldn't believe he (Nidal Hasan) could have done this," Sheikh Shaker Elsayed of Dar Al Hijrah Islamic Center said.

We're also tracking developments in the investigation in Texas. We've learned that's where authorities are trying to track down the six people Nidal Hasan had dinner with the night before the shootings.

Tonight we also take you back to the terror that gripped the Washington area in October 2002. You'll hear new interviews with the first responders in the DC-area sniper case. The convicted mastermind of the attacks, John Allen Muhammed, is scheduled to die by lethal injection tomorrow night in Virginia. Today the Supreme Court refused to block the execution. A little more than seven years ago, Muhammed and his teenage accomplice, John Lee Malvo, murdered ten random people and left millions living in fear that they would also be targeted.

And don't miss part two of Anderson's interview with Oprah Winfrey. Plus, we're taking your questions on health care reform. Text them to AC360 or 22360.

Join us for these stories and much more starting at 10 p.m. ET. See you then!

Filed under: Maureen Miller • The Buzz
soundoff (27 Responses)
  1. Shelly

    1. This man joined the Army after 9/11. He new very well he would be fighting against his "own people".

    2. If your that conflicted on your life...take it out on yourself, not dozens of people who are protecting us from people like you!

    November 10, 2009 at 9:50 am |
  2. Ume Ibrahim

    Major Hassan didnt want to be deployed to afganistan and why should he? to go and kill more innocent people. How in the world to do expect him to live with himself afterwards.

    November 10, 2009 at 9:06 am |
  3. Alan

    In response to Annette, I find it hard to beleived that " He was no longer able to cope with the prospect of killing muslims" can be seriously consider .. he was a head Doc and short of being at the wrong place as the wrong time his chance of Killing his fellow brother Muslim's seem pretty sleem ... I work for an US company in a Muslim country and in my humble opinion .. the majority simply dont like us very much ... I think this guy was out for revenge and he see an opportunity to strike .. he took it ... they call it Martyrdom ...

    November 10, 2009 at 8:30 am |
  4. Retired Soldier(20 yrs)

    Art, your dead on target...........the one thing civilians do not understand about terriost is there extreamly patient . They are trained NOT to draw attention from there neighbors, so when you see on TV he neighbors saying " oh, he was so nice..etc" that's the game. He had very extream veiws, and they were reported to the chain of command, who did nothing !!!! 1, because he was an officer, and two they employ the same "polical policies" they do in Afghanistan...............so worried about world ,and public opinion.

    November 10, 2009 at 5:53 am |
  5. Tom

    Fort Hood, Killings are very sad........CNN commented few days past that this Maj. Nidal Hasan never had any vistitors to his apartment, except either the day of the shootings or the day before. This visitor was of a dark color & wore Muslim clothing..........This should be investigated by your FBI.........and Maj. Hasan's bank account should be checked for any sudden, large sums deposit.....his bank account & his parents bank account........could be pay offs from the Muslim networks.........you know what the say.........always follow the money.
    Thank god that lady police officer arrived in time to stop him.

    November 10, 2009 at 3:04 am |
  6. Jason Morris

    Bottom line, what happened was a terrible attack against unarmed soldiers, in a place they considered safe. Having been through the same procecssing line earlier this year, that room is the perfect place to carry out such an attack...there are a lot of people present (we had to wait in line outside before going inside to wait in line again), in a small place, with little to nothing to hide behind for protection. Tremendously cowardly attack, going after people who are not armed, and who have no means to protect themselves, they were all sitting ducks, and a doctor, whom we trust with our lives, took advantage of that trust to kill. God bless those who died, and protect those who survived this attack.

    November 10, 2009 at 2:45 am |
  7. John M. Reyes

    Honestly people! unknowns cross the United States borders every day, do we realy believe the Gov. wants to admit they have made another mistake after 911 now another one, when is our Gov. going to realize they are traing these people to hurt us.

    November 10, 2009 at 1:34 am |
  8. John Navy

    Hi Anderson,
    I served in Iraq and the Middle East. These people hate us. Hassan is one generation removed as is thousands of "Americans" that are hired by our government in minority "quota" efforts. Its sad, but true! Report on that and email me if you want the opinion of someone who served our county in the US military and and feels the consequences of American "quota" weaknesses.

    November 10, 2009 at 1:23 am |
  9. Debbie

    I think the military is at a loss. If they do admit his terrorist ties, then they will be faced with a huge problem; what do they do about other muslims in the service...how dare they try to blame his actions on post traumatic stress..this man never fought in a war-to me that is shaming our servicemen who really do have problems when they come home. i think the military is looking for any excuse and its obvious what the truth is. i just wonder how many muslim servicemen/officers will now repeat this before america finally says enough. i dont think they should have the same rights as americans...they entire belief system is radical and we will never win a war against them...you cannot change history.

    November 10, 2009 at 1:21 am |
  10. Lloyd

    Hasan was on the radar as someone that may be dangerous. This tragedy shows how far the government and society will go to avoid racial profiling and what price we are willing to pay.

    November 10, 2009 at 12:18 am |
  11. Alixa

    Army Chief of Staff Gen. George Casey declares that we should stop speculating about Hassan's Muslim faith. Casey's main concern now is to protect the Muslims in the military. Given America's culture of tribal feuding and revenge-seeking who knows what can happen.
    So stop reporting all this unhelpful news. Hassan was a disgruntled employee. End of story.

    November 9, 2009 at 11:49 pm |
  12. Lori

    It's possible this killer was working with a radical organization but I tend to believe the chip on his shoulder towards non-muslims was his own and he most likely acted alone. If he was conflicted about going to war to fight other muslims then why wasn't he smart enough to talk to his superiors and explain to them that this wasn't possible for him because of his religion ??? I don't feel a bit sorry for him, there are always options in life, he could have taken off and gone to Iran or Iraq if he hated America that bad, no one forced to live in the land of the free and the brave. It's a shame that cowards like this choose to take out their baggage on others who are innocent and have no fault other then they were going about their business and happen to cross paths with a psycho like this. I hope justice will be swift for him because he deserves it for all the pain and anguish he has caused.

    November 9, 2009 at 11:43 pm |
  13. annette pyes

    Hasan is a very conflicted man who is a devote muslim and against the war. When he was deployed to go overseas, this put him in the middle of his conflict and over the edge. He was no longer able to cope with the prospect of killing muslims, and decided to end his torment and rather take his frustrations out on others as seems to be what many people do these days.

    November 9, 2009 at 10:50 pm |
  14. Sophia Hovey

    In response to PVT Isaac Eugene, there is a huge differance between kicking a soldier out of the army when they've been under investigation for being a possible terrrorist, and a soldier upset about his sargent making him run six miles in twenty degree weather..

    In response to Hailey..
    Thats a great idea, if Gitmo doesn't get shut down. President Obama is against Gitmo.. I don't know if I would trust someone with the name of OBAMA, who also attended a radical church..

    November 9, 2009 at 10:46 pm |
  15. PVT Isaac Eugene

    I am a soldier and so I know firsthand that the Army does not dismiss soldiers or allow them to leave the Service, after the Army has spent money to train them, just because they are disgruntled. I doubt Hasan was any more than a confused and disillusioned employee, but if the Army released every soldier who said he wanted to leave the Service before they served out the term of their enlistment contract, there would not be many soldiers left to fight our wars, would there? There are two sides to blame because this is standard policy for the Military Service, but does not discount the cowardice of this individual (Hasan) who enlisted for his own benefit but then wanted to leave after he obtained his schooling to become a psychiatrist.

    November 9, 2009 at 10:26 pm |
  16. Diane

    How could this happen? Maybe Hassan is not the only one on the inside waiting for his opportunity. The Muslims have TOLD us point blank they are our enemy. How many have to die before we believe them? If the same US personnel were in charge during WW2, Dr. Mengele would have been put in charge of the Army Medics! In WW2, we were demonized for restricting the movement of the Japanese but they were the enemy and political correctness was not yet on the radar screen. Winning was the only goal: and we did! Get rid of the experts, book mongers and pc police and try....just TRY....some common sense!!

    November 9, 2009 at 10:23 pm |
  17. PVT Isaac Eugene

    I am a soldier and so I know firsthand that the Army does not dismiss soldiers or allow them to leave the Service, after the Army has spent money to train them, just because they are disgruntled. There are two sides to blame because this is standard policy for the Military Service, but does not discount the cowardice of this individual (Hasan) who enlisted for his own benefit but then wanted to leave after he obtained his schooling to become a psychiatrist.

    November 9, 2009 at 10:20 pm |
  18. Rosie Ryle

    We can thank all of the American citizens who are always so quick to point the racial discrimination finger at anyone who doesnt promote the advancement of minorities, regardless of performance. Every employer is afraid to discipline or reprimand anyone that could possibly file a discrimination complaint.

    November 9, 2009 at 10:19 pm |
  19. art

    I am retired Army, from Ft. Hood Tx. I just want to say, that I believe, from what I have heard, mostly from CNN, that Major Hasan is an implant from terroists and was able to complete the task they were hoping for

    November 9, 2009 at 10:17 pm |
  20. Hailey

    send him to Gitmo and let him rot

    November 9, 2009 at 10:14 pm |
  21. Fred Lee

    Hasan earned a six figure salary. Where did all that money go each month considering his spartan life style? Did he send most of it to Islamic terror organizations in U.S. and elsewhere overseas?

    November 9, 2009 at 10:09 pm |
  22. Mr. Green

    It was the second terrorist attack in US histoty, but gov. prefer to be a political correct. It just makes me sick!
    The message was clear, they (islamis world) want to kill others and destroyed Christian civilization.

    November 9, 2009 at 10:00 pm |
  23. Jay, New Brunswick Canada

    The problem is not Muslims. The tragedy at Fort Hood was perpetrated by a fanatic – in this case, a Muslim fanatic. Christian fanatics have killed people at abortion clinics. Animal rights fanatics have killed innocent people as well. The debate should be about what we can do when we see evidence of dangerous radicalism. When a Christian minister recently preached that President Obama and his family should die, we did nothing. If he, or someone acting on his statement, had taken that action, we would now be saying, “The signs were there so why didn’t someone do something?” Free speech notwithstanding, let’s not be so open minded that our brains fall out.

    November 9, 2009 at 9:59 pm |
  24. Annie Kate

    I really hope there are no terror ties between the shooter and any terrorist cells. While it would explain why this happened if there is a link between the two, it would make me worry about just how many more there are or could be.

    The man to die for the DC shootings had more than enough time to do all his appeals – for someone who commits a heinous crime such as this there needs to be a quicker way to the death penalty than 7 years. The people he killed would have loved to have had another 7 years of life.

    November 9, 2009 at 9:56 pm |
  25. Victor Hall

    I am very sorry for the innocent soilders that lost their lives at Fort Hood. I recently lost my job as a soilder in the Air Force on Homestead AFB FL, due to discrimination because of my name. I served for 15 years, served in Iraq and felt so strongly as a American that I made a bold decision to have legal name change, because of this they made false allegations against me and fired me from my civil service carrer and dischagred me out of the Reserves. The military does discrminate on a person because of there name and who they think they are. My question is what drove this person to do what he did and what is the military covering up?

    November 9, 2009 at 9:31 pm |
  26. Cecil

    The Army is guilty, in their efforts to be "politically correct" they failed to release Major Hasan from active duty. He was not fit to serve nor did he want to remain in the military. Shame on his military superiors!

    November 9, 2009 at 9:19 pm |
  27. alex lyrics

    We need to end those wars , and send our soldiers to hunnt thhese people in our own county.

    November 9, 2009 at 8:18 pm |