Nidal Malik Hasan Update: FBI Missed "Ticking Time Bomb," Says Ft. Hood Report

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Nidal Malik Hasan
Nidal Malik Hasan (AP Photo, file)

(CBS/AP) A U.S. Senate report regarding Nidal Malik Hasan, the suspected shooter at a Texas military base is sharply critical of the FBI's failure to recognize warning signs that Army Maj. had become an Islamist extremist and amounted to a "ticking time bomb."

The report concluded that both the Defense Department and the FBI had sufficient information to detect that the Army psychiatrist had been radicalized to violent extremism, but they failed to understand and act on it. It said the FBI's top leaders must exercise more control over local field offices and put to better use the intelligence analysts who should have been able to connect the dots.

Hasan is charged with 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 counts of attempted premeditated murder in the November 2009 shooting rampage at the Fort Hood military post.

Hasan is in custody, and a mental health evaluation has just been completed. A brigade commander who received the report is expected to make a recommendation next month on whether Hasan should stand trial and face the death penalty. A commanding general will make the final decision.

"Our report's painful conclusion is that the Fort Hood massacre could have, and should have, been prevented," said Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman, an independent, calling it a heartbreaking tragedy of errors.

Many of the report's criticisms have been aired over the past year in other investigations of shooting. The Senate report stresses that the FBI's move to become more intelligence-driven has been hampered by internal conflicts that must be addressed.

And it says the bureau's failure to use its analysts well contributed to it overlooking the significance of communications with known terrorists transmitted by Hasan.