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Gates Orders Moment of Silence for Fort Hood Victims

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Nov. 6, 2009 – Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates has directed a moment of silence throughout the Defense Department today to honor the victims of yesterday’s attack at Fort Hood, Texas.

Twelve people were killed and 30 others were wounded when Army Maj. Nidal Malik Hassan allegedly opened fire in the post’s Soldier Family Readiness Center. One of the wounded victims died overnight, bringing the death toll to 13. Malik was wounded and is in custody, Army officials said.

The attack occurred at 1:34 p.m. CST yesterday, and Defense Department personnel around the world will pause and mark the moment of silence at that same time today, Pentagon Press Secretary Geoff Morrell said. For example, those in the U.S. Eastern time zone will observe the moment of silence at 2:34 p.m. local time, while those on the West Coast will observe it at 11:34 a.m.

Gates is at the White House this morning discussing the situation at Fort Hood with President Barack Obama, Morrell said. Army Secretary John McHugh and Army Chief of Staff Gen. George W. Casey Jr. are at Fort Hood conferring with officials there.

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