Ft. Hood, or Terrorism as Mental Illness

I can’t help but feel like all the efforts to draw general conclusions on national security from the Ft. Hood tragedy miss an obvious point — namely, the ways in which terrorism at the low end of the hierarchy overlaps with mental illness. That’s something that’s obscured by our tendency to focus our discussion on the political and strategic goals of the upper echelons of terrorist leadership, which are national security issues. But at the ground level, terrorists are essentially insane. That’s not to say they are not able to function “normally,” or that they should not be held accountable […]

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