I have long argued (for example, in 2002) that when a Muslim in the West for no apparent reason violently attacks one or more non-Muslims, the working assumption should be that jihad is involved. Of course, that assumption could prove wrong, but jihad is so often the case (TheReligionOfPeace.com records over 15,500 violent attacks worldwide since 9/11) that this motive should be at the forefront of the investigation.
I mention this because we learned today that the military has charged one Staff Sgt. Rashad Valmont with premeditated murder in the shooting death of Master Sgt. Pedro Mercado at Fort Gillem, Georgia. Initial reports tell us little about Valmont except that he is 29 years old and from the Virgin Islands, and that he reported to Mercado at the personnel management branch of the U.S. Army Medical Professional Management Command – and has a typically Muslim first name.
An Army Reserve spokeswoman, of course, declined to discuss the motive for the shooting, a perfectly appropriate public position. But, assuming that Valmont is Muslim, I hold that internally it must prominently consider jihad as a motive.
Comment: I will follow this case to see how it does turn out. (June 22, 2010)
June 23, 2010 update: "A charge of premeditated murder was preferred against Staff Sgt. Rashad J. Valmont, under Article 118 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice" reports an Army spokeswoman.