It was previously reported that the Army psychiatrist who went on a deadly shooting spree at Fort Hood Thursday had been on the FBI's radar over some Internet postings about suicide bombers. Now ABC News has it that Army Major Nidal Malik Hasan had been trying to make contact with people associated with al Qaeda, and U.S. intelligence agencies knew about it months ago, because these al Qaeda suspects were under electronic surveillance. One of these is the former imam of a Virginia mosque who praised Hasan for the shooting on his website (cached).
It's still unclear whether the intelligence agencies informed the Army that one of its officers was trying to link up with al Qaeda, but Rep. Peter Hoekstra (R-MI), the ranking Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, has requested the CIA and other intelligence agencies brief the committee on what was known. Hoekstra is reportedly "absolutely furious" that the committee has been refused an intelligence briefing by the DNI or CIA on Hasan's attempt to reach out to al Qaeda. But CIA spokesman Paul Gimigliano tells ABC, "This is a law enforcement investigation, in which other agencies—not the CIA—have the lead. Any suggestion that the CIA refused to brief Congress is incorrect."
Meanwhile, at Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas, Hasan is now conscious and had his ventilator removed over the weekend. He is speaking with hospital staff, but it's not clear if he's talked with with Army investigators yet.