NYT: Fort Hood does virtually nothing to stop people from bringing guns onto the base

posted at 4:41 pm on April 4, 2014 by Allahpundit

So it’s like every other “gun-free zone,” basically. Anyone who can be trusted with a weapon can’t have one, and anyone who can’t be trusted will have little trouble ignoring the rule. Makes sense.

Here’s the answer to my question yesterday about how useful the current ban on guns inside military bases is in keeping them out.

At Fort Hood, which sprawls for 340 square miles over the Texas prairie, Specialist Lopez was being treated for behavioral and mental health issues. To enter the base, he would have undergone no security screening beyond showing his identification and would have passed through no metal detectors.

Military personnel who are not police officers are not allowed to carry privately owned weapons on Army bases. Soldiers on post must register their firearms, which Army officials said Specialist Lopez failed to do with the handgun he used in the attack. Fort Hood’s rules rely in large part on the honor system, and require all personnel bringing a privately owned firearm onto the base in a vehicle to declare that they are doing so and state why…

Dan Corbin, the mayor of Killeen and a Vietnam veteran, said on Thursday that it would be impossible to prevent unauthorized weapons from being brought onto the base.

“If you were to search every one of those cars thoroughly enough, think of how many man hours this would take,” Mr. Corbin said. “Think of all the cars backed up for miles to get in. People would have to leave for work four hours in advance. You do what you do now, which are things like random checks and checking for IDs. If you are a soldier and you have your ID and a Fort Hood sticker on your car, you are in and you could conceivably carry in guns.”

If you’re going to do so little to prevent firearms from being brought in from outside, why not lift the ban altogether? Not only did Nidal Hasan and Ivan Lopez defy the ban with ease, Lopez actually ended up buying his weapon at the same gun store as Hasan. The shootings themselves took place in the same general area on the base. There’s actually a standard M.O. now if you want to shoot a bunch of people at Fort Hood. That … doesn’t feel like a successful policy. The risk of letting law-abiding soldiers bring guns onto base is that it’ll raise the odds of a malefactor stealing one of those guns to shoot up the place, which would allow him to sidestep the background check involved in buying a weapon from a gun shop. On the other hand, anyone who wouldn’t pass a background check shouldn’t be on the base in the first place, and lifting the ban would raise the odds that he’d be stopped sooner than Hasan or Lopez was by a bystander who’s carrying. It was, is, and will remain hard to understand why people who are professionally trained to handle firearms safely have fewer gun rights than many civilians.

Makes me wonder whether the Supreme Court’s revolution in Second Amendment jurisprudence won’t ultimately include a case brought by a soldier stationed on a base who wants to keep a gun in his residence for protection. The odds against him in court would be 100-1 at least: When it comes to soldiers’ civil rights, SCOTUS defers heavily to the Pentagon. But as the Times points out, Fort Hood is essentially a small city; it runs for hundreds of square miles and has tens of thousands of residents. If the Second Amendment protects a city-dweller’s right to have a gun in his home (and, maybe, protects his right to carry in certain circumstances), does it protect a soldier’s right to have a gun in his home at Fort Hood for self-defense? If the base is doing next to nothing to keep people from bringing unauthorized guns inside, why not?


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I thought all the Progs wanted only soldiers to have guns…so said Piers Morgan.

d1carter on April 4, 2014 at 4:49 PM

Fort Hood, TX, US
2m
Fort Hood official: Memorial for shooting victims planned for Wednesday – @statesman

canopfor on April 4, 2014 at 4:49 PM

Of course not – a stupid law like this can’t be enforced.
As with ALL gun control laws, it depends entirely on law-abiding people obeying the law – and of course criminals don’t give a dam about the law.

The reality is, if they actually tried to thoroughly search every car entering every military base, the lines at the gates (especially at morning rush hour) would be several hours long – if not more.

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 4:50 PM

I thought all the Progs wanted only soldiers to have guns…so said Piers Morgan.

d1carter on April 4, 2014 at 4:49 PM

And they don’t really want soldiers to have them either.
So who does that leave with the guns?

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 4:51 PM

we’re talking about people driving their vehicles onto the base. what do you want the MPs to do… search each and every car that attempts to enter? obviously that’s not a rational solution so allowing servicemen so lifting the ban completely makes the most sense.

dbilly76 on April 4, 2014 at 4:52 PM

http://www.breakingnews.com/topic/shooting-reported-at-fort-hood-april-2-2014/

Fort Hood, TX, US
3m
More: Lt. Gen. Mark Milley says Spc. Ivan Lopez’s mental condition not the ‘direct precipitating factor’ in shooting – @AP
read more on bigstory.ap.org

Fort Hood, TX, US
24m
Army CID spokesman Chris Grey: Fort Hood gunman had no history of criminal activity, haven’t established motive – live video
end of alert

Fort Hood, TX, US
25m
Army CID spokesman Chris Gray: No links to terrorism in Fort Hood shooting, all indications gunman acted alone; not ruling anything in or out – @KVUE
end of alert

Fort Hood, TX, US
29m
Fort Hood official: Cause of shooting likely an escalating argument – live video
end of alert

Fort Hood, TX, US
32m
Fort Hood official: 10 soldiers injured in shooting have been released from the hospital and have returned to duty – @KVUE
see original on twitter.com

Fort Hood, TX, US
34m
Fort Hood official identifies soldiers killed in shooting as Sgt. 1st Class Daniel Ferguson, Sgt. Carlos Lazaney, Sgt. Timothy Owens – live video
end of alert

38m
Live video: Military officials hold a briefing on the deadly shooting at Fort Hood – @NBCNews
see original on nbcnews.com
=============================

canopfor on April 4, 2014 at 4:52 PM

The Associated Press ‏@AP 7m

Fort Hood official says soldier’s mental condition not main factor in deadly shooting: http://apne.ws/1i8AeiZ
Expand
========

https://twitter.com/AP

canopfor on April 4, 2014 at 4:53 PM

Lopez actually ended up buying his weapon at the same gun store as Hasan.

Uh oh…that store better prepare itself for a flurry of attention…the way that the ATF is conducting itself lately they might just storm the place and take everything in the building.

nextgen_repub on April 4, 2014 at 4:55 PM

You can’t reason people out of a position they didn’t reason themselves into.

jnelchef on April 4, 2014 at 4:56 PM

Me thinks,…The Wild West Doctrine should be re-implemented,
on all Military Bases,..that way,..everybody is armed,..and the,
ahems, ..playing field is leveled!!!!

canopfor on April 4, 2014 at 4:58 PM

And they don’t really want soldiers to have them either.
So who does that leave with the guns?

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 4:51 PM

Obama’s federal secuity protectorate, for which they are buying scads of ammunition.

jnelchef on April 4, 2014 at 4:59 PM

Mark Steyn made a salient observation. Every federal agency now has a SWAT team that provides militaristic assault capabilities except the actual military. They have to call the local cops.

DanMan on April 4, 2014 at 4:59 PM

Fort Hood’s rules rely in large part on the honor system
=========================================================

Say whats!!

canopfor on April 4, 2014 at 5:00 PM

Obama’s federal secuity protectorate, for which they are buying scads of ammunition.

jnelchef on April 4, 2014 at 4:59 PM

You betcha!!!

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 5:00 PM

Bases check your ID when entering, they also randomly pull over cars to search for contraband. Like others said, impossible to search every car unless you have a device they drive through that can detect weapons. Chicago’s murder rate is now at 1958 levels, coincidence they recently allowed for concealed carry? Last night on O’Reilly they talked about arming everyone, that is also not feasible, that shouldn’t even be considered because of the logistical nightmare. But, concealed carry has been shown to drop gun violence almost everywhere it is legal.

Sven on April 4, 2014 at 5:00 PM

So, they run it like Chicago except the criminals didn’t know about it.

But now they do.

Like I noted this morning on this story, They’ve put a bunch of stupid f#@ks in charge. And, personally, I think the camp commandant should be put on trial on charges of negligent homocide.

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 5:01 PM

Fort Hood’s rules rely in large part on the honor system
=========================================================

Say whats!!

canopfor on April 4, 2014 at 5:00 PM

Not just Ft Hood – EVERY military base.

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 5:01 PM

The risk of letting law-abiding soldiers bring guns onto base is that it’ll raise the odds of a malefactor stealing one of those guns to shoot up the place, which would allow him to sidestep the background check involved in buying a weapon from a gun shop.

Are you serious? C’mon. Mass shootings are a minuscule proportion of instances of gun violence and instances of gun-related death. This policy wasn’t made with mass shooters primarily in mind, nor should it have been. We can revisit whether or not it’s the correct policy based on recent events, but if we pretend of though mass shootings are the only things we have to worry about, the only thing to base gun policy on, then we’re pretty much on the same page as Harry Reid, appealing to emotion for gun policy, rather than to facts.

calbear on April 4, 2014 at 5:04 PM

Citizen soldiers – citizens first, soldiers second.

Yes you do agree to all sorts of things when you join the military.

You do not sign your natural right to self-defense away: it is yours. A society may judge a felon unable to utilize the civil right to self-defense, but when threatened no jury will convict a felon who defends his life with any arms available when it is threatened by those who would wantonly take it. When those who are not convicted of any crime are prohibited from their civil right to self-defense they are being deprived of their right to exercise their positive natural liberty to preserve their life.

US citizens on US soil have the right to keep and bear arms as a civil and natural right when convicted of no crime. These volunteers are not slaves, they have not become lesser beings and they have full protection of the Constitution as they protect it, in turn. Without them you don’t have a SCOTUS or a representative democracy in service to a republic.

ajacksonian on April 4, 2014 at 5:04 PM

Went to the NYT link to see if they were enabling comments (not).

But I noticed that they described the terror attack by Major Hasan in 2009 as a “rampage”; the T Word was never used.

They also gleefully included a picture of the evil gun shop where both of the Ft. Hood shooters bought their guns. Of course, that has absolutely nothing to do with the subject of this story…

F-

Del Dolemonte on April 4, 2014 at 5:05 PM

Welcome to the official website for the 720th Military Police Battalion,

the “Soldiers of the Gauntlet”,

headquartered at Fort Hood, Texas, “The Great Place.”
*****************************************************

On behalf of the Battalion Commander, LTC David D. Stender and the Battalion Command Sergeant Major, CSM Myron J. Lewis we would like to welcome you, and hope that you enjoy looking through the pages on this site and finding out more about this fantastic unit.

The 720th Military Police Battalion is subordinate unit of the 89th Military Police Brigade, headquartered on Fort Hood, Texas. Since 1955, elements of the battalion have provided Law Enforcement support to the Fort Hood community; patrolling and securing the largest military installation in the world, and keeping its Soldiers and dependents safe during the many intervening deployments that are such a part of current military life.

In addition to local Law Enforcement duties, the 720th Military Police Battalion deploys Military Police Soldiers worldwide on numerous rewarding and challenging missions. Throughout the unit’s history, Soldiers of the Gauntlet have served proudly in World War II, Vietnam, Southwest Asia, and in the Global War on Terrorism.

http://www.hood.army.mil/720thmpbn/

canopfor on April 4, 2014 at 5:05 PM


Fort Hood does virtually nothing to stop people from bringing guns onto the base

That’s an unfair statement.

How many thousands of people (military and civilian) work at a base that sprawls across 340 square miles? Killeen’s mayor has it right.

“If you were to search every one of those cars thoroughly enough, think of how many man hours this would take,” Mr. Corbin said. “Think of all the cars backed up for miles to get in.

It took me two hours to get on a military base the day after the 9/11/01 atrocities because of what you have to do to search a car. It’s impractical to make that the standard for everyday operations at a garrison command.

It isn’t that Fort Hood (or any military base) does virtually nothing but rely on the honor system when it comes to bringing weapons on the base. The system puts a certain amount of TRUST in the military and civilian personnel that work at these bases. There are also penalties for those who violate the rules. For 99.9% of the time, that trust is well-founded and the rules work. So, it is unfair to say that Fort Hood doesn’t do anything.

Happy Nomad on April 4, 2014 at 5:06 PM

Like I noted this morning on this story, They’ve put a bunch of stupid f#@ks in charge. And, personally, I think the camp commandant should be put on trial on charges of negligent homocide.

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 5:01 PM

Clinton signed the law that made it felony to bring a gun onto a military base.
Even if the general agrees with the policy, which many politically minded generals do, especially under this regime, it’s not really his fault.

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 5:06 PM

There is a reason that these bans aren’t just lifted: these policies are punitive so if you do violate them, you can be prosecuted or receive some other nonjudicial punishment or adverse administrative action for failing to obey them. There are quite a few Soldiers who do violate these policies and are caught (mostly because they are doing something stupid). Take these policies away, then you can’t punish the servicemember.

Bravesbill on April 4, 2014 at 5:07 PM

Anyone who can be trusted with a weapon can’t have one, and anyone who can’t be trusted will have little trouble ignoring the rule. Makes sense.

That pretty much wraps it up…

Tim Zank on April 4, 2014 at 5:07 PM

It took me two hours to get on a military base the day after the 9/11/01 atrocities because of what you have to do to search a car. It’s impractical to make that the standard for everyday operations at a garrison command.

Happy Nomad on April 4, 2014 at 5:06 PM

Two full years after 9/11/01, some friends and I went thru the same drill trying to get into a Federal facility in Hawai’i that was unrelated to the military, simply because it was adjacent to a huge military base.

Del Dolemonte on April 4, 2014 at 5:08 PM

Fort Hood official: Memorial for shooting victims planned for Wednesday – @statesman

canopfor on April 4, 2014 at 4:49 PM

Daaaymmm…it had to be on a partaaay nite ?
/Mooooch

burrata on April 4, 2014 at 5:09 PM

The reality is, if they actually tried to thoroughly search every car entering every military base, the lines at the gates (especially at morning rush hour) would be several hours long – if not more.

[dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 4:50 PM]

That’s why the reality is you don’t run the operation like that, but keep the vehicles outside the perimeter and the people either walk in or take a bus to the gate and then again once inside.

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 5:11 PM

They also gleefully included a picture of the evil gun shop where both of the Ft. Hood shooters bought their guns. Of course, that has absolutely nothing to do with the subject of this story…

Del Dolemonte on April 4, 2014 at 5:05 PM

Of course it doesn’t. From what I read about Hassan getting his weapon, this isn’t a “gun shop” as much as it is a full-service store to purchase a firearm. Hassan actually took lessons and had range time ahead of his terrorist attack.

Hard not to see how another Fort Hood soldier wouldn’t end up at the same place.

Happy Nomad on April 4, 2014 at 5:12 PM

That’s why the reality is you don’t run the operation like that, but keep the vehicles outside the perimeter and the people either walk in or take a bus to the gate and then again once inside.

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 5:11 PM

That’s not a realistic solution either.
A lot of bases are spread out over many miles. The budget for the number of buses required at every base would be astronomical – and as it is the military is cutting back on a lot because of budget cuts.

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 5:14 PM

Sven on April 4, 2014 at 5:00 PM

Every base I’ve been to in the last few years uses an ID scanner at the gate. Even the private security contractors scan IDs. The guards at military gates have far more training, experience, and professionalism than your average TSA agent.

pookysgirl on April 4, 2014 at 5:14 PM

obviously that’s not a rational solution so allowing servicemen so lifting the ban completely makes the most sense.

dbilly76 on April 4, 2014 at 4:52 PM

Except to a liberal, who cares so much. To him/her/it, the right solution (since you can’t reasonably stop the guns moving onto the base) is to ban all guns everywhere; then there won’t be any guns to move onto the base. Right?

GWB on April 4, 2014 at 5:14 PM

Fort Hood shooting, April 2, 2014
35s
Scott & White hospital says it has 3 patients from Fort Hood shooting in fair condition; 6 discharged – @swhealthcare
see original on twitter.com

https://twitter.com/swhealthcare

canopfor on April 4, 2014 at 5:15 PM

Every base I’ve been to in the last few years uses an ID scanner at the gate.

pookysgirl on April 4, 2014 at 5:14 PM

None of them in my area do this. It is solely a visual check. So much for uniformity……

GWB on April 4, 2014 at 5:16 PM

Of course it doesn’t. From what I read about Hassan getting his weapon, this isn’t a “gun shop” as much as it is a full-service store to purchase a firearm. Hassan actually took lessons and had range time ahead of his terrorist attack.

Hard not to see how another Fort Hood soldier wouldn’t end up at the same place.

Happy Nomad on April 4, 2014 at 5:12 PM

I’ve already seen a few articles about it. It’s the only real gun store for many miles. The only other places in the area that sell guns are pawn shops. That one store has likely sold many thousands of guns to soldiers – that have never been used in a crime.

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 5:16 PM

Clinton signed the law that made it felony to bring a gun onto a military base.

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 5:06 PM

Department of Defense (DoD) Directive 5210.56, signed into effect in February 1992 by Donald J. Atwood, deputy secretary of defense under President George H.W. Bush.

Socratease on April 4, 2014 at 5:17 PM

4m ago
Scott & White hospital says it has 3 patients from Fort Hood shooting in fair condition; 6 discharged – @swhealthcare
see original on twitter.com

Murphy9 on April 4, 2014 at 5:17 PM

That’s why the reality is you don’t run the operation like that, but keep the vehicles outside the perimeter and the people either walk in or take a bus to the gate and then again once inside.

That’s not a feasible option either. Most installations and their surrounding areas don’t have the room to create parking lots for tens of thousands of cars. Not to mention, thousands of buses will have to be bought and thousands of bus drivers hired. Further, some of these installations encompass large swaths of land which would make travel on the installation itself impossible, esp. if you have to lug around gear or other equipment.

Bravesbill on April 4, 2014 at 5:17 PM

If the Second Amendment protects a city-dweller’s right to have a gun in his home (and, maybe, protects his right to carry in certain circumstances), does it protect a soldier’s right to have a gun in his home at Fort Hood for self-defense? If the base is doing next to nothing to keep people from bringing unauthorized guns inside, why not?

My prediction :
Hussein will get on it and issue a fatwa repealing
a city-dweller’s right to have a gun in his home (and, maybe, protect his right to carry in certain circumstances) just so a soldier is NOT able to protect his/her life inside the USA.
Let’s not forget the people who imposed this crap are the same people who used to proudly spit on returning veterans. Why would they suddenly transform into patriotic military lovers now ?

burrata on April 4, 2014 at 5:18 PM

Every base I’ve been to in the last few years uses an ID scanner at the gate. Even the private security contractors scan IDs. The guards at military gates have far more training, experience, and professionalism than your average TSA agent.

pookysgirl on April 4, 2014 at 5:14 PM

Yes they do – it’s the new DoD wide Common Access Card (CAC) (ID card). But they don’t necessarily scan EVERY card for people going in – and that electronic CAC scan doesn’t search the vehicle for weapons.

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 5:19 PM

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 5:11 PM

Besides Arthur’s reply, there’s also the issue of now you have just moved the target. And, if it’s outside the gate, will it be patrolled by military security? If not, then the service members will complain (rightly) about being forced to leave their valuables unguarded, etc. Or, the bad guy could rig car bombs on service member’s vehicles. It’s an all-around bad idea.

GWB on April 4, 2014 at 5:19 PM

canopfor on April 4, 2014 at 5:00 PM

Not just Ft Hood – EVERY military base.

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 5:01 PM

dentarthurdent:Ughs:)

canopfor on April 4, 2014 at 5:19 PM

The reality is, if they actually tried to thoroughly search every car entering every military base, the lines at the gates (especially at morning rush hour) would be several hours long – if not more.

[dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 4:50 PM]
That’s why the reality is you don’t run the operation like that, but keep the vehicles outside the perimeter and the people either walk in or take a bus to the gate and then again once inside.

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 5:11 PM

Have you ever been to a base, most are 24 hour operations covering vast areas and employing thousands of people. There is no way this is going to happen. They have random searches for contraband, just like random urinalysis etc. The random checks alone probably keep 90% of the people from attempting it. The ones we have to worry about (the crazies) will find a way.

Sven on April 4, 2014 at 5:20 PM

None of them in my area do this. It is solely a visual check. So much for uniformity……

GWB on April 4, 2014 at 5:16 PM

Don’t be surprised to see scanners hit your area soon. The AF made an effort to get everyone into the system a few years ago, and when I was overseas last year, the Marines were starting to do it too.

pookysgirl on April 4, 2014 at 5:22 PM

Every base I’ve been to in the last few years uses an ID scanner at the gate. Even the private security contractors scan IDs. The guards at military gates have far more training, experience, and professionalism than your average TSA agent.

pookysgirl on April 4, 2014 at 5:14 PM

The DoD has pretty much done away with vehicle decals. After a decade of requiring 100% ID “checks” the powers-that-be finally figured out that the decals were worthless other than figuring out who can park where. Gone are the days that you are waved in with a red/blue/green/black strip below a DoD decal. With, of course, the nonsense on the sides of when they expire. I once replaced my (expired) numbers with cut-down decals from Home Depot meant to be used on mailboxes. I had no problems getting on base.

Happy Nomad on April 4, 2014 at 5:22 PM

[dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 5:06 PM]

I disagree. Firstly, what Clinton did or din’t do and whether the general agrees with it or not is beside the point.

Secondly, the Commandant responsible for the men and the fort. He accepted the position. As such he’s responsible for arranging affairs such that these issues are addressed. One of those affairs is not arranging the safety of those in his care such that their lives hang in the balance by basing operations on an honor system.

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 5:24 PM

blink on April 4, 2014 at 5:20 PM

You really need to re-read and understand what I actually posted.

Happy Nomad on April 4, 2014 at 5:25 PM

DOD has beefed up security at gates, they now have barriers etc. but these were put in mainly after 9/11 to stop terrorist attacks, they no longer wave people through like in the past. Since they cannot physically inspect every car they do random checks. They also have many random checks inside the base. They have active shooter exercises but you cannot expect you will stop every lone lunatic, impossible! But what these measures do is reduce the amount of contact the shooter has with other people on base. They know you cannot stop it 100% but at least reduce the victims.

Sven on April 4, 2014 at 5:30 PM

Department of Defense (DoD) Directive 5210.56, signed into effect in February 1992 by Donald J. Atwood, deputy secretary of defense under President George H.W. Bush.

Socratease on April 4, 2014 at 5:17 PM

That law was about authorizing security personnel and others as designated to carry and use deadly force on military bases – defining who can “carry” weapons on base – not overall possession.
Read carefully what it actually does.

The law implemented under Clinton in 1993, clarified and expanded the one you referenced, and made it illegal for people to bring weapons on base, even in the trunk of their car – i.e. not directly “carrying”.

http://www.apd.army.mil/pdffiles/r190_14.pdf

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 5:34 PM

I’ve already seen a few articles about it. It’s the only real gun store for many miles. The only other places in the area that sell guns are pawn shops. That one store has likely sold many thousands of guns to soldiers – that have never been used in a crime.

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 5:16 PM

Imagine the angst in the liberal media if it were a pawn shop!

Hassan, Lopez, and even the Wahsington Navy Yard shooter bought their weapons legally with no indication that they would kill people.

Allahpundit berates the Army for doing virtually nothing to stop these atrocities. But as long as we have the Second Amendment and reasonable laws in place, what else was the Army supposed to do?

Is Allahpundit advocating repeal of the Second Amendment???? That’s my exit question.

Happy Nomad on April 4, 2014 at 5:34 PM

Secondly, the Commandant responsible for the men and the fort. He accepted the position. As such he’s responsible for arranging affairs such that these issues are addressed. One of those affairs is not arranging the safety of those in his care such that their lives hang in the balance by basing operations on an honor system.

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 5:24 PM

The Commandant (Base Commander) also has a boss and he has a boss and he has a boss and it eventually leads to O’Barry. Nuff said.

Sven on April 4, 2014 at 5:35 PM

Lopez actually ended up buying his weapon at the same gun store as Hasan.

Poor dumb Juan Williams thought this was a big deal last night. “When are we going to do someting about that?”

slickwillie2001 on April 4, 2014 at 5:35 PM

‘You can’t bring weapons in here, this is a US Army base!”

slickwillie2001 on April 4, 2014 at 5:38 PM

I disagree. Firstly, what Clinton did or din’t do and whether the general agrees with it or not is beside the point.

Secondly, the Commandant responsible for the men and the fort. He accepted the position. As such he’s responsible for arranging affairs such that these issues are addressed. One of those affairs is not arranging the safety of those in his care such that their lives hang in the balance by basing operations on an honor system.

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 5:24 PM

No career minded general is going to ignore or contradict a federal law or DoD directive – and you don’t get to 3 star general without being career-minded and at least a little bit politically astute. His career would end the minute he violated the law.
Federal law is what makes everyone on a military base sitting ducks for a nut case – just like every other gun free zone.

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 5:40 PM

That’s not a realistic solution either.
A lot of bases are spread out over many miles. The budget for the number of buses required at every base would be astronomical – and as it is the military is cutting back on a lot because of budget cuts.

[dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 5:14 PM]

Look, I was just responding to your point about having a several hours long traffic jam every morning. Please. You don’t know whether it is realistic or not. You don’t know whether the budget for buses would be astronomical. You’re just fantasizing about the impossible because it suits your position.

I’m not saying this is the way to go. I think they ought to ditch the gun-free zone in some reasonable way. But absent that they need to do something on the level of what I hint at in my earlier comment.

It’s one or the other. I find it unacceptable that our government has been so cavalier and so negligent on so many issues, this one in particular. And correcting it is a very high priority for me.

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 5:46 PM

Here’s the answer to my question yesterday about how useful the current ban on guns inside military bases is in keeping them out.

That is a question that reveals the askers lack of familiarity with large military installations and the military.

Large bases can not function well if every morning they have to do a car & person search of people who have already justified their presence on base – have car stickers & ID badges. There has to be a level of honor that the background reviews on people authorized to be on base is adequate.

There should be some meeting ground between free will C&C and only security & MPs being armed.

katiejane on April 4, 2014 at 5:48 PM

Look, I was just responding to your point about having a several hours long traffic jam every morning. Please. You don’t know whether it is realistic or not. You don’t know whether the budget for buses would be astronomical. You’re just fantasizing about the impossible because it suits your position.

Yes, I do. I’ve been working on military bases for 30 years, and I’ve dealt with budget issues and what it costs to provide services like what you’re suggesting.
And as GWB and a couple others have indicated, there are other problems with forcing thousands of people to park off base.
BTW – whose property are they supposed to park on if it’s off base? And what will that cost?
And what kind of security will there be for all of those cars that are outside the DoD security zone?

I’m not saying this is the way to go. I think they ought to ditch the gun-free zone in some reasonable way. But absent that they need to do something on the level of what I hint at in my earlier comment.

Good – yes – the fundamental solution is to eliminate the gun free zone.

It’s one or the other. I find it unacceptable that our government has been so cavalier and so negligent on so many issues, this one in particular. And correcting it is a very high priority for me.

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 5:46 PM

Good. But the solutions have to be realistic, and within the scope of the shrinking DoD budgets.

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 5:54 PM

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 5:24 PM

Wow! Please tell me you’ve been drinking since noon.

the Commandant responsible for the men and the fort.

The only commandant’s I can think of are in the sea services. They are not responsible for forts. That’s an army term.

He accepted the position. As such he’s responsible for arranging affairs such that these issues are addressed.

Not entirely sure what you are hitting out here but the base commander is indeed responsible for security.

One of those affairs is not arranging the safety of those in his care such that their lives hang in the balance by basing operations on an honor system.

What the hell are you trying to say?

Happy Nomad on April 4, 2014 at 5:55 PM

The Commandant (Base Commander) also has a boss and he has a boss and he has a boss and it eventually leads to O’Barry. Nuff said.

[Sven on April 4, 2014 at 5:35 PM]

Agreed. But he’s the one who took the job and he knows what happened with Nidal Hasan so the issue is not unknown to him (I don’t know whether the Base Commander (thanks for being nice about that) is the same or not but either way he’d still know of the problem). If he could not address it either because it was above him or or something else, then he should have declined the position.

I’m not delighted to suggest prosecuting him, Sven. But responsibility has to start somewhere. Right now, it seems no one in government is ever held to account for what they are responsible for doing or not doing. It’s out of control and it has to stop. In this case people died because the standard operating procedure was an idiotic “honor system”.

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 6:01 PM

The risk of letting law-abiding soldiers bring guns onto base is that it’ll raise the odds of a malefactor stealing one of those guns to shoot up the place, which would allow him to sidestep the background check involved in buying a weapon from a gun shop.

I have to raise the BS flag on this one. If you carry, you don’t let someone else have it.

Also: Rules now on who can have a gun and how they are stored are a pain in the butt. I live on a military post they make it really hard to carry OFF post (because I have to get the gun from my hose to the gate and vice-versa).

Even when registered and in your home, weapons must be unloaded and locked up separately from ammunition at all times. Apparently on post, even your home is not your castle.

BadBrad on April 4, 2014 at 6:04 PM

Secondly, the Commandant responsible for the men and the fort. He accepted the position.
Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 5:24 PM

BTW – just a minor point – but the various military commanders don’t exactly “accept the position” – they are assigned to the position. This is the military – they don’t usually have much of a choice other than to separate or retire (if they’re eligible to retire).
You go to the location and job your orders tell you you’re going to.

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 6:04 PM

No career minded general is going to ignore or contradict a federal law or DoD directive – and you don’t get to 3 star general without being career-minded and at least a little bit politically astute. His career would end the minute he violated the law.
Federal law is what makes everyone on a military base sitting ducks for a nut case – just like every other gun free zone.

[dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 5:40 PM]

Why are you still harping about the law. The general has options besides ignoring or contradicting federal law. He can create a several hour traffic jam every morning until he gets the resources he needs and if anyone up the chain of command yells at him he can bluntly state none of his charges are going to die on his watch because of a retarded rule but if the boss wants to take responsibility for deaths by overruling him then go right ahead and do so, but the base commander is going on record in objecting.

So quit throwing up “the law” strawman.

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 6:07 PM

Agreed. But he’s the one who took the job and he knows what happened with Nidal Hasan so the issue is not unknown to him (I don’t know whether the Base Commander (thanks for being nice about that) is the same or not but either way he’d still know of the problem). If he could not address it either because it was above him or or something else, then he should have declined the position.

I’m not delighted to suggest prosecuting him, Sven. But responsibility has to start somewhere. Right now, it seems no one in government is ever held to account for what they are responsible for doing or not doing. It’s out of control and it has to stop. In this case people died because the standard operating procedure was an idiotic “honor system”.

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 6:01 PM

As the Base Commander he has regulations he has to follow, he cannot arbitrarily change regulations or make his base distinctly different from others, If anyone, the Commander in Chief is responsible, after the Hasan shooting he should have ensured that appropriate steps were taken and that direction should go down the chain of command and would apply to all bases. So it real comes down to leadership, we have none.

Sven on April 4, 2014 at 6:10 PM

Why are you still harping about the law. The general has options besides ignoring or contradicting federal law. He can create a several hour traffic jam every morning until he gets the resources he needs and if anyone up the chain of command yells at him he can bluntly state none of his charges are going to die on his watch because of a retarded rule but if the boss wants to take responsibility for deaths by overruling him then go right ahead and do so, but the base commander is going on record in objecting.

So quit throwing up “the law” strawman.

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 6:07 PM

Because “the law” ties the hands of everyone up and down the chain.

Happy Nomad must have gotten it right. You’ve been drinking (or smoking) all day haven’t you? There’s just no other explanation for being so far outside the real world.

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 6:11 PM

Dan Corbin, the mayor of Killeen and a Vietnam veteran, said on Thursday that it would be impossible to prevent unauthorized weapons from being brought onto the base.

Strawman.

VorDaj on April 4, 2014 at 6:14 PM

Strawman.

VorDaj on April 4, 2014 at 6:14 PM

Point?

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 6:16 PM

“On the other hand, anyone who wouldn’t pass a background check shouldn’t be on the base in the first place”

-AP

Um, I live on Fort Riley and all you need to get on post here is a drivers license AP, do you realize how much construction is going on here and it’s all civilian workers (many from other states). Do you think they do background checks on the thousands of workers who come on post every day?

jephthah on April 4, 2014 at 6:26 PM

“On the other hand, anyone who wouldn’t pass a background check shouldn’t be on the base in the first place”

-AP

Um, I live on Fort Riley and all you need to get on post here is a drivers license AP, do you realize how much construction is going on here and it’s all civilian workers (many from other states). Do you think they do background checks on the thousands of workers who come on post every day?

jephthah on April 4, 2014 at 6:26 PM

Actually they do at our base, every contractor is checked to see if they have been in jail for any reason in the past 5 years. If they have, they are not allowed on base, it is appealable to the Base Commander (good luck).

Sven on April 4, 2014 at 6:35 PM

Mark Steyn made a salient observation. Every federal agency now has a SWAT team that provides militaristic assault capabilities except the actual military. They have to call the local cops.

DanMan on April 4, 2014 at 4:59 PM

Anyone who can’t figure out why is not able to put things together. They don’t want a military that is capable of fighting back when they take over.

crankyoldlady on April 4, 2014 at 6:48 PM

Anyone who can’t figure out why is not able to put things together. They don’t want a military that is capable of fighting back when they take over.

crankyoldlady on April 4, 2014 at 6:48 PM

And if you know anyone in the military warn them about this.

crankyoldlady on April 4, 2014 at 6:51 PM

Dan Corbin, the mayor of Killeen and a Vietnam veteran, said on Thursday that it would be impossible to prevent unauthorized weapons from being brought onto the base.

Well then, do nothing. Status quo and all that.

Jeebus Cripes.

CW on April 4, 2014 at 6:58 PM

Dan Corbin, the mayor of Killeen and a Vietnam veteran, said on Thursday that it would be impossible to prevent unauthorized weapons from being brought onto the base.

Well then, do nothing. Status quo and all that.
Jeebus Cripes.

CW on April 4, 2014 at 6:58 PM

Well, no, just stop making everything an unauthorized weapon – in other words, don’t have unenforceable laws.
Change the law that makes all military bases gun free zones.

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 7:21 PM

What did they change after the first shooting ? Anyone know?

CW on April 4, 2014 at 7:22 PM

Well, no,

dentarthurdent on April 4, 2014 at 7:21 PM

I was mocking the guy.

CW on April 4, 2014 at 7:28 PM

The general rule, at least in the Army I was in (Vietnam era) that as long as state and local laws (and possibly rental agreements) allow it, a soldier can own as MANY GUNS AS HE WANTS if he lives off base. A soldier may also own weapons if he lives on base but they must be registered with the Provost Martials Office and stored in an armory or similar facility and must be individually checked out whenever needed.In actual practice I never registered my guns on base because (at least in Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, since soldiers were allowed to park their POVs (privately owned vehicles)in the company parking lots, these vehicles were used to store all sorts of gear that soldiers did not want to have in their foot and wall lockers (always subject to inspection))—-including rifles and pistols. Also surf boards, scuba equipment and souvenirs from Southeast Asia etc. that wouldn’t fit into these lockers (LOL). The only paperwork was to get a base sticker for the car (very easy). Once you got that you were never inspected entering or leaving Foote Gate.

What I am afraid in the Fort Hood case is that the GUN CONTROL NUTS will seize on this as an excuse to rob not only soldiers, but also civilians of their right to individually own guns. New York papers are already hysterically squawking about this.

MaiDee on April 4, 2014 at 7:34 PM

The general has options besides ignoring or contradicting federal law. He can create a several hour traffic jam every morning until he gets the resources he needs and if anyone up the chain of command yells at him he can bluntly state none of his charges are going to die on his watch because of a retarded rule but if the boss wants to take responsibility for deaths by overruling him then go right ahead and do so, but the base commander is going on record in objecting.

So quit throwing up “the law” strawman.

Dusty on April 4, 2014 at 6:07 PM

1) which would also be against state and federal laws. their hands are tied.

2) putting on record that gun free zones are killing zones is what he should do.

dmacleo on April 4, 2014 at 7:57 PM

All sorts of business across the country have those silly signs posted at their door, but do virtually nothing to stop people from bringing guns onto their business shop.

lel2007 on April 4, 2014 at 8:35 PM

Think the security should be tighter at places dealing with psychiatric issues? Well, DUH.

kemojr on April 4, 2014 at 8:41 PM

…so has JugEars flown there yet…to address “HIS” troops?

KOOLAID2 on April 4, 2014 at 8:56 PM

Until a CG grows a pair and says “enough”.
It will continue.
Troops are naked.

Hotel1 on April 4, 2014 at 9:35 PM

I think the best solution would be for Officers and Senior NCOs to have sidearms and ammunition required as part of their duty uniform.

This would result in having a large number of armed soldiers present at pretty much all locations during duty hours. There would be a smaller, but not insignificant number of armed soldiers at night with the Duty Officers and NCOs being armed.

The Army would need to make sure that the armed personnel are not only qualified with their weapon, but have additional training in use of force and marksmanship. Simple weapons qualification is sometimes just a once and done annual requirement that does not truly build marksmanship.

schmuck281 on April 5, 2014 at 12:10 AM

I served 21 years in the Marine Corps as an infantry officer. My first assignment was as a platoon commander in Vietnam 1968-1869.

During my career, I don’t recall Marine bases having strict gun control regulations. I mean it’s silly. When I took my Marines to the field for training, we were armed with assault weapons. Anyone could have substituted live ammunition for the blanks or what the heck, just wait until we had a live fire exercise.

I remember rifle racks in the barracks where Marines used to keep their weapons instead of the armories of today. I remember my Marine uncle carrying his M-1 with him en route to his next duty station. Times have changed.

There is no solution other than to allow certain military personnel to be allowed to carry concealed weapons (with permit). If you have received official training in using a pistol, you are a sharpshooter of expert, you have qualified on the piston range at least twice; and you are an officer or a SNCO then you should be allowed to carry a concealed weapon on base.

I don’t understand the mentality of senior leaders that thinks that you can be trusted to carry the most lethal weapons available in combat but somehow you are not trusted to carry a concealed pistol in peace time.

Military personnel are perhaps the most well trained individuals in using weapons safely and yet they appear to be the least trusted.

We’ve come a long way. It’s just too bad we took a wrong turn somewhere along the way.

BMF on April 5, 2014 at 7:18 AM

“…….. (and, maybe, protects his right to carry in certain circumstances),” ? The Second Amendment says….”keep and BEAR”. I think that is pretty clear, I don’t see any restrictions written into that Amendment by the Founders, in fact, it specifically states “shall not be infringed”, that means by government. That the courts have not declared a right to carry outside of ones home, says more about their reluctance to address that issue, than about the clear intent of the Founders.

kjatexas on April 5, 2014 at 8:31 AM

Those in charge of base security should be brought up on charges, stripped of rank, and court martialed.

Their gross negligence leaves their hands blood-stained.

Any public or private institution that is guilty of such criminal neglect that results in the death of forcedly disarmed persons should be subject to criminal charges and civil action of not less than $10 million and up to $100 million per death paid to the victims families, with legal fees tacked on top of that.

Until those responsible for leaving these people unarmed and undefended are held responsible, they will keep on treating security in a continually non-serious fashion, and this will happen again and again.

s1im on April 6, 2014 at 12:17 AM

maybe if the r.e.m.fs in the personel office gave the guy his leave he asked for instead of jerking him around he would not have gone postal

a guy who was in the sandbox, and now has mental issues is jerked around by the HQ staff

a guy who the army put on meds
a guy who the army jerked around when his mom did in November.

and they ask why this happened.

sniffles1999 on April 6, 2014 at 9:10 AM

Unless the Army has radically changed the officer corps and senior ncos are not going to go for allowing a bunch of junior enlisted carrying around privately owned weapons. My guess is that they’ll increase base security by adding on some sort of federal police, maybe Homeland Security. They already use a bunch of civilian guards. In the meantime they’ll send more troops off to see the various civilian councilors that are already in place.

claudius on April 7, 2014 at 2:02 AM