Notion about the Fort Hood shooting - Input Junkie
Notion about the Fort Hood shooting|
Could there be something wrong with Fort Hood? Lighting? Air quality? Culture?
I'd like to know whether violence in general is higher there than at other military bases.
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|Date:||April 3rd, 2014 06:00 pm (UTC)|| |
Hmmm... interesting question. It's a huge base, home to many different units. I think the 4th Infantry Division is based there, and I know there are also a lot of armored units.
It's a pretty enough place, in a central Texas hill country kind of way. The town of Killeen is a typical small town adjacent to a large military installation. It has lots of businesses that exist to separate the soldiers from their paychecks.
As Army posts go, I'd say it's no worse than Ft. Bliss or Ft. Jackson or Ft. McCoy, those being the other posts I have some experience with during my years in the Marine Corps. It doesn't feel like a Marine Corps base, but no Army post I've ever been on does.
|Date:||April 3rd, 2014 06:19 pm (UTC)|| |
There's about 1.4 million active duty military in the US, and about 45k soldiers at Ft. Hood. So about 3% of the entire US military is there. Birthday Game logic probably applies--two events at *some* base that size isn't that much of a coincidence.
It's a big base, and it's been getting more publicity because of the previous incident. There was a shooting at Fairchild AFB that didn't get nearly as much attention as the Fort Hood attacks.
I wonder if it's priming. Everyone at that base knew about the previous shooting; it's surely weighing heavily on people, especially someone already compromised like the shooter appears to be.
It's like how suicide can be 'contagious', in a vulnerable population. :-/
It's a large post where a lot of people have done multiple deployments. Support services at most bases are stretched a little thin. The economy is not so great that getting out is going to be an improvement.
Killeen is over an hour from Waco, and there's not a lot of local work for spouses. But you can say similar things about other Army posts and military bases. The pay is not great, and Congress has been resistant to improving it. Without knowing much about what was going on in Ivan Lopez's life, I'd hesitate to blame it on the particular culture of Ft. Hood compared to Ft. Riley, Ft. Bragg, Ft. Campbell, or Camp Pendleton or Camp Lejeune. There's a lot that happens in these places that doesn't make the national news, and when it does it rarely sticks unless it's something like this that's worth a lot of news cycles.
At this point, all I'd say is that there *might* be something off about Fort Hood, and it would be reasonable to check on whether there's more violence (from assault to murder) than would be expected.
Crimes of violence committed on a military base by service members may not make it into the news at all. Suicides on post often do not. The command staff are very good at minimizing the amount of information that gets out. It's harder with incidents off-post but they often don't make much noise even in local news media.
For research, I would suggest news media in Killeen, Waco, and Temple. For comparison, Ft. Bragg news might show up in Fayetteville, NC media; Ft. Campbell in Hopkinsville, KY, Clarksville, TN, or Nashville, TN media. For Ft. Riley, look at Manhattan or Topeka KS sources. I suspect a lot of the coverage will be sketchy. It's a distressing issue.
I was hoping the military would have their own records, but I can believe those might not be available to the public.