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Associated Press, Published November 05 2009

AP sources: Authorities had concerns about suspect

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Army psychiatrist suspected of carrying a shooting rampage at Fort Hood, Texas, had come to the attention of authorities six months ago because of Internet postings that discussed suicide bombings and other threats, law enforcement officials said Thursday.

The postings appeared to have been made by Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, who was wounded during the shootings at the Army post that killed 12 soldiers and wounded at least 30 others. A Fort Hood spokesman had earlier said Hasan was killed.

The officials say they are still trying to confirm that Hasan was the author of the Internet postings. They say an official investigation was not opened.

One of the officials said late Thursday that federal search warrants were being drawn up to authorize the seizure of Hasan's computer. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the case.

One of the Web postings that authorities reviewed is a blog that equates suicide bombers with a soldier throwing himself on a grenade to save the lives of his comrades.

"To say that this soldier committed suicide is inappropriate. Its (sic) more appropriate to say he is a brave hero that sacrificed his life for a more noble cause," said the Internet posting. "Scholars have paralled (sic) this to suicide bombers whose intention, by sacrificing their lives, is to help save Muslims by killing enemy soldiers."

Military officials said Hasan, 39, had worked for six years at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, where he had received a poor performance evaluation. He transferred to Fort Hood in July.

The officials, who had access to Hasan's military record, spoke on condition of anonymity because such records are confidential.

Republican Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison said Hasan was about to deploy overseas, but it was not known whether he was headed to Iraq or Afghanistan.

Retired Army Col. Terry Lee told Fox News that he worked with Hasan, who had hoped Obama would pull troops out of Afghanistan and Iraq. Lee said Hasan got into frequent arguments with others in the military who supported the wars, and had tried hard to prevent his pending deployment.

Hasan was single with no children. He was born in Virginia and graduated from Virginia Tech University, where he was a member of the Reserve Officer Training Corps and earned a bachelor's degree in biochemistry in 1997. He received his medical degree from the military's Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland, in 2001. He did his internship, residency and a fellowship at Walter Reed.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press.