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Fort Hood hero says Obama has 'neglected' survivors

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
February 12th, 2013
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Kimberly Munley, who was a decorated hero following the November 2009 Fort Hood massacre says President Obama broke the promise he made to her that the victims would be well taken care of. "Betrayed is a good word," the former sergeant told ABC News on "World News with Diane Sawyer" and "Nightline." "Not to the least little bit have the victims been taken care of," she said. "In fact they've been neglected."

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Three years after the White House arranged a hero's welcome for Munley and her partner, credited with stopping the deadly shooting there, she remains bitter.  There was no immediate comment from the White House about Munley's allegations.

Thirteen people were killed, including a pregnant soldier, and 32 others shot in the deadly rampage by the accused shooter, Major Nidal Hasan. He now awaits a military trial on charges of premeditated murder and attempted murder.

Munley, who has since been laid off from her job with the base's civilian police force, was shot three times as she and her partner Sgt. Mark Todd confronted Hasan. Witnesses say Hasan shouted "Allahu Akbar" as he opened fire on soldiers being sent to deployment to Afghanistan.

As Munley lay wounded, Todd fired the five bullets credited with bringing Hasan down.

In spite of evidence that Hasan was in communication with al Qaeda leader Anwar al-Awlaki prior to the attack, the military has denied the victims a Purple Heart and is treating the incident as "workplace violence" instead of "combat related" or terrorism. Al-Awlaki was killed in a U.S. drone attack in Yemen, in what was termed a major victory in the U.S. efforts against al-Qaeda.

Munley and dozens of other victims have now filed a lawsuit against the military alleging the "workplace violence" designation means the Fort Hood victims are receiving lower priority access to medical care as veterans,

Some of the victims, "had to find civilian doctors to get proper medical treatment" and the military has not assigned liaison officers to help them coordinate their recovery, the group's lawyer, Reed Rubinstein says.

"There's a substantial number of very serious, crippling cases of post-traumatic stress disorder exacerbated, frankly, by what the Army and the Defense Department did in this case," Rubinstein says. "We have a couple of cases in which the soldiers' command accused the soldiers of malingering, and would say things to them that Fort Hood really wasn't so bad, it wasn't combat."

A spokesperson for the Army said its policy is not to comment on pending litigation, but that it is "not true" any of the military victims have been neglected and that it has no control over the guidelines of the Veterans Administration.

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