Thursday, February 18, 2010

Just waiting for the crazies to ramp up on this one

So, Fox News recently reported a rumor: "The U.S. Army is investigating allegations that soldiers were attempting to poison the food supply at Fort Jackson in South Carolina."

First, the lack of any length or details in this report bothers me. The Army is investigating "allegations," it's not even investigating people at this point, almost two months after the "allegations" were made. Second, the timing of the allegations fits smoothly into the post-Fort Hood timeframe of "We need to start investigating Muslims!" Finally, the fact that it has been picked up only by crazy blogs (read the comments...) and right wing media at this point suggests to me that there isn't much substance to the story.

Thankfully, I also encountered this blog when doing some more research on the story, who helpfully explains the coded language used by the CID representative at Fort Jackson: "If there were substantive leads for an ongoing investigation, he would have said simply that the investigation continues and then said nothing more about it."

But, the story fits so well with the right's attempt to create a narrative that the Obama administration is soft on terror, and the Army is being crippled by its attempts to maintain political correctness. I don't think either is true. Frankly, I even think the Nidal Hasan issues were not related to his religion, except only peripherally (the Army does not have enough Muslim individuals in counseling roles, so even as a subpar performer, he was kept on so that Muslim soldiers would have someone to turn to - they do this with officers from other faiths as well...).

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