Eleven people plus a gunman were dead and 31 wounded after a shooting on Thursday at a soldier-processing center at Fort Hood, Texas, officials said. All the casualties took place at the soldier readiness facility around 13:30 [1:30 p.m. CT].
Ten of the other dead also were soldiers, while the remaining one was a civilian police officer who was working as a contractor on the base.
The slain gunman was identified as Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, 39. Hasan was a psychiatrist who previously worked at Walter Reed Army Medical Center but more recently was practicing at Darnall Army Medical Center at Fort Hood, according to professional records.
Hasan was scheduled to be deployed to Iraq, “and appeared to be upset about that,” Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas, said.
President Obama called the shootings “tragic” and “a horrific outburst of violence.” He expressed his condolences for the shooting victims.
This violence outburst of homicide may be triggered by the long-lasting resentment over Iraq and Afghanistan issues. It has nothing to do with the fact that Major Nidal Malik Hasan is a psychiatrist.
We do not know the antecedence behavior to make full behavioral analysis. At the same time, we need to know the chain of events and the mental status before the rampage to be able to formulate the motives and intentions.
All we can say based on the Senator’s comment is Major Hasan was facing a psychological dilemma at time he was about to be deployed to Iraq.
Deployment to foreign bases in general is a major life event. When someone receives news of the deployment, the brain’s sensory cortex simultaneously registers the information (a correlate) and sets in motion biological changes that cause the heart to pound faster.
He may experience an almost immediate fear that may later escalate to anxiety or depression and that response could trigger the act of homicide that occurs instantaneously, out-of-the blue.
It is significant to rule out the possibility of bully in the army, inner religious conflict, family and financial problems.
The commanding officer should be advised, that when he give order of significant importance, he must assess the reaction carefully in order to anticipate any possibility of grave reaction and consequence.
Persons who have access to dangerous weapons should be told to surrender their firearm in order to avoid such mishap.
This event can be avoided if careful surveillance was conducted before the deployment plan was executed.