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(RNS) In a somber ceremony recalling the 13 people gunned down in an attack at Fort Hood, President Obama said the tragedy cannot be supported by any faith.
“It may be hard to comprehend the twisted logic that led to this tragedy,” said Obama, standing before boots and photos that symbolized the dead at a memorial service on the Army base Thursday (Nov. 5). “But this much we do know: No faith justifies these murderous and craven acts. No just and loving God looks upon them with favor. For what he has done, we know that the killer will be met with justice in this world and the next.”
In his remarks, the president neither named the suspect nor the Muslim faith of the man accused of the violence, Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan.
But the president did speak, as President Lincoln did before him, of not placing God on one or the other side of battles.
“`We are a nation that guarantees the freedom to worship as one chooses,” he said. “And instead of claiming God for our side, we remember Lincoln’s words and always pray to be on the side of God.”
Obama named all 13 who died, describing their military and family roles as they were memorialized on the day before Veteran’s Day.
Gen. George Casey, chief of staff of the Army, recalled that special operations units have a tradition of quoting the biblical book of Isaiah when they eulogize fallen comrades, recalling the passage where God asks “Who shall go for us?” He said the same words can be applied to the military members and families that they leave behind.
“I’m extremely proud of the confidence, the courage and the commitment of soldiers, families, civilians and veterans,” said Casey.
“And I am convinced more than ever that, when faced with the question, `Who will go for us?’ they will answer to a person, `Here am I; send me.”‘
By Adelle M. Banks
Copyright 2009 Religion News Service. All rights reserved. No part of this transmission may be distributed or reproduced without written permission.

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