As flags fluttered at half mast in memory of the dead, investigators searched for a motive behind the mass shooting at the Fort Hood military base in Texas.
The suspected gunman, Major Nidal Malik Hasan, a Muslim born in the United States killed 13 people before being wounded by police. Barbara van Dahlen is a clinical psychologist: “He had his own struggles going on about his role in the military, his feelings about deployment, fear of deploying, whatever these things might be.” President Obama has been quick to calm the situation by urging “caution against jumping to conclusions.” Meanwhile, Arab and Muslim Americans prepared to face either verbal of physical attacks as a result of the shootings. The US has been engaged in six years of fighting in Iraq and close to eight in Afghanistan, adding extra stress on individual soldiers. In May a US serviceman shot and killed five colleagues at a base in Baghdad.