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Thursday
Mar102011

Army to Punish Nine Officers for Fort Hood Shootings

File: Soldiers salute at a remembrance service for the 13 victims killed in the Ft. Hood attacks. Ben Sklar/Getty Images(FORT HOOD, Texas) -- The Army has begun administrative punishments against nine officers for what it calls "administrative and leadership failures relating to the career of Maj. Nidal Hasan," the alleged shooter in the Fort Hood, Texas shootings that killed 13.

Army Secretary John McHugh has initiated "adverse administrative action" against the officers, according to an Army statement released Thursday on the results of an accountability review to determine if Hasan's superior officers were negligent.

"Although no single event directly led to the tragedy at Fort Hood, certain officers clearly failed to meet the high standards expected of their profession," the Army statement said.

The officers were not identified by name or rank, and it seemed there would not be a uniform punishment.

"The severity of each action varies depending on case-specific facts and circumstances," the statement said.

As part of its broader investigation into the circumstances that led to the November 2009 Fort Hood shooting, the Army conducted an accountability review of the actions of the officers that supervised Hasan. Unlike the broader investigation's conclusions, which were made public this year, the results of the accountability review have not been made public -- until now.

In the days following the attacks, it came to light the FBI knew Hasan had contact with U.S.-Born Islamic radical Imam Anwar Al-Awlaki, a known Al Qaeda operative and recruiter. A report by the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee released last month concluded that there were warning signs about Hasan's radicalization and antagonism to the U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that raised concerns among his colleagues -- but some didn't report these for fear they would be accused of racial profiling.

Hasan has been charged with 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 counts of attempted premeditated murder. He could face the death penalty if his case is recommended to a court martial.

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