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Banished: Proof of Jihad in Hasan Trial
by Arnold Ahlert
In a move that reeks of political motivations, Judge Col. Tara Osborn ruled against the admission of evidence that prosecutors say would show Maj. Nidal Hasan's jihadist motivations for attacking the Fort Hood military base in 2009. Osborn had been asked to approve several witnesses, along with other key evidence, that would have shown Hasan believed he had a "jihad duty" to perpetrate the atrocity that killed 13 and wounded 32 of his fellow soldiers. Lawyers representing family members killed and wounded by Hasan were rightfully outraged by her refusal to allow the evidence.
The barred evidence included references to Hasan Akbar, a Muslim soldier who was sentenced to death after killing two and wounding 14 of his fellow soldiers in a grenade and rifle attack at Camp Pennsylvania in Kuwait, two days after the beginning of the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003. Prosecutors wanted to suggest that Hasan had carried out a "copycat attack." Osborn disagreed. "The court believes Sgt. Akbar is not on trial in this case," Osborn contended, adding that the introduction of such evidence would "only open the door to a mini-trial" of Akbar and result in a "confusion of issues, unfair prejudice, waste of time and undue delay."
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