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Amurrikwan Experience: The Oklahoma City Bombing

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  • Amurrikwan Experience: The Oklahoma City Bombing

    Amurrikwan Experience: The Oklahoma City Bombing
    The 1995 Oklahoma City Bombing was the largest act of domestic terrorism in U.S. history.
    A new documentary on the PBS series American Experience takes a fresh look at the events
    and motivations that led to the attack by Timothy McVeigh, and finds resonance for today.
    Jeffrey Brown interviews director Barak Goodman.

    AUDIE CORNISH: Finally tonight: 1995 was the year of the largest act of domestic terrorism in U.S. history, the Oklahoma City bombing.

    A new documentary premieres tonight on the PBS series “American Experience” and takes a fresh look at that traumatic event and what led to it.

    Jeffrey Brown has the story.

    MAN: There’s heavy damage done.

    JEFFREY BROWN: April 19, 1995.

    MAN: About a third of the building has been blown away.

    JEFFREY BROWN: A Ryder rental truck with 5,000 pounds of explosives ripped through the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City; 168 people were killed, 19 children among them.

    WOMAN: Who has come in here and done this terrible thing?

    BARAK GOODMAN, Director, “Oklahoma City: I knew very little of the story. I mean, I remember — like a lot of people remember that day, and the image of that building, you know, with its face blown off, an image that we weren’t used to or accustomed to at the time.

    JEFFREY BROWN: Barak Goodman is the director of the film “Oklahoma City.”

    BARAK GOODMAN: While I think a lot of people remember this as a simple story of a lone terrorist committing an act, it actually has very deep roots. And when we pulled on those roots, a whole ‘nother story sort of appeared.

    JEFFREY BROWN: The film delves into the rise of white nationalist militias in the 1980s, and two later events that galvanized the country and deeply influenced Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh: the siege of Ruby Ridge in 1992, when the FBI and U.S. Marshals confronted Randy Weaver at his home in rural Idaho, resulting in the deaths of Weaver’s wife, son and a U.S. Marshal.

    And the following year, Waco, Texas, when federal agents, responding to reports of weapons stockpiling, attempted to arrest the leader of a religious sect known as the Branch Davidians. A firefight broke out, killing 10, including four ATF agents. And after a 51-day standoff, the complex went up in flames as agents moved in with tear gas. More than 70 people died.

    During the long standoff, then 24-year-old Army veteran Timothy McVeigh had been watching nearby.

    WOMAN: Timothy McVeigh had already apparently been very concerned about what had happened at Ruby Ridge. So he came down to Waco and sold bumper stickers with pro-gun, anti-government slogans.

    He saw the raid as clear evidence of what the government would do to try to confiscate guns and persecute gun owners.

    JEFFREY BROWN: Timothy McVeigh himself wasn’t a member of a militia, but you’re convinced that that context is the way to understand him?

    BARAK GOODMAN: Without question.

    McVeigh himself writes — he talks in interviews that we got access to and tape-recorded interviews about the anger he felt, the rage he felt at Ruby Ridge in particular, and Waco, and the radicalization that happened in part because of those events, and, in addition to that, a series of other exposures to this movement.

    “The Turner Diaries” was his bible. “The Turner Diaries” is a horrible novel, racist novel that became a — it’s almost a talisman to this movement, a very important motivating force. And I think it actually describes the bombing of an FBI building in Washington.

    JEFFREY BROWN: It’s even a model.

    BARAK GOODMAN: It describes the kind of bomb. It’s very similar to the one McVeigh used.

    So, he was steeped in the ideas of this movement. He was steeped in the ideology. It’s a very diffuse movement. And being a member of a militia is really sort of irrelevant.

    JERRY FLOWERS, Police Inspector: We could hear people screaming. We could hear them screaming. We could hear them crying. You just couldn’t see them because it was so dark.

    JEFFREY BROWN: The documentary breaks often from that history to return to the bombing itself, talking with eyewitnesses who still hold painful memories.

    MAN: They had no idea.

    JEFFREY BROWN: It shows how much confusion there was initially about who had carried it out, and the surprise when McVeigh was arrested.

    MAN: I think everybody felt this sudden sense of betrayal. I think everyone thought, you’re one of us.

    BARAK GOODMAN: People forget that, in the days and hours after the bombing, everyone assumed it had been Middle Eastern terrorism. This was bandied about on national television and CNN and CBS and all the networks. They were all focused on Middle Eastern terrorism. And their sources were telling them that it was likely a Middle Eastern terrorist.

    JEFFREY BROWN: The film also shows the role conspiracy theories about Waco and Ruby Ridge played in roiling this right-wing movement. Some will no doubt see parallels to today.

    Goodman takes a longer view.

    BARAK GOODMAN: I would say that this is a movement that waxes and wanes throughout American history and sort of appears in different forms, whether it’s going back to Shays’ Rebellion at the beginning of the history of our country, up through the Red Scare, the Klan years.

    There’s a lot of different manifestations. But what unites all of it are two things, really. One is a deep enmity towards the federal government, a feeling that the federal government is the seed of all evil and it’s a tool in the hands of enemies, like the Jews, like blacks, like the U.N. now.

    The other thing that really characterizes it is sort of conspiratorial thinking, that — a way of connecting dots that places movement in a kind of context of a war.

    KERRY NOBLE, Former Militia Member: And in this war, it’s an all or nothing. We are either going to win as the white race, or we’re going to lose.

    JEFFREY BROWN: Despite the theories of a larger conspiracy at work, the film shows how McVeigh, with some help from two friends, was able to pull off the bombing.

    Did you come to any conclusions about how this act of domestic terrorism changed the country or changed our sense of our own security, ourselves?

    BARAK GOODMAN: I think it had a tremendously transformative effect.

    I think, first of all, for law enforcement, there was never again a naivete about the threat from domestic terrorism. I think, if you went to the FBI today and you really talked to people, unlike perhaps some politicians, they are very focused on the threat from domestic terrorism. They understand it and they’re paying attention to it.

    And I think, just for the ordinary citizen, although this movement is so — kind of oscillates. It sort of can, and it did after Oklahoma City, retreat and recede, that we sometimes forget about it. It’s still there. It never goes away. And then it will come back.

    And I think, in recent years, you have seen more and more of an uptick. Dylann Roof in Charleston and any number of other such actions are no longer quite as shocking. We understand that this is part now of a motif in American life. And I think that the recent incarnation of that started with Oklahoma City and Timothy McVeigh.

    JEFFREY BROWN: From Washington, I’m Jeffrey Brown for the PBS NewsHour.

    AUDIE CORNISH: “Oklahoma City” airs tonight on most PBS stations.

    I am The Librarian

  • #2
    Timothy McVeigh was "The Manchurian Oswald"

    Timothy McVeigh was "The Manchurian Oswald"

    I knew some of the people in your documentary from when I became a Resistance soldier. Just after Waco I became a Militia activist. Militias back then were altogether small groups of related or long-term friends of around a dozen or so members organized by Christian Identity / Klan veterans. By late 1994 and early 1995 these suburban whiggers got into the act pretending that they were "Constitutional militias" even though Article 1 of their precious CONstipation did away with the ability of militia formation at the County and township level. In order to be a "Constitutional Militia" you have to be organized by a state government and under federal military discipline, i.e. a state National Guard.

    Timothy McVeigh made no secret of what he intended to do. McVeigh spent time at Elohim City under the "Doctor Reverend Robert Millar" who was a known FBI informant. Richard Snell knew about Waco just before he was executed in Arkansas a few hours before Oklahoma City. I myself, running two militias in Southwest Missouri wrote a story about how the $outhern Poverty Law Center / Ashkenazi Defecation Center /ZOG/Babylon the Third and Final had put a microchip in Timothy McVeigh's left buttock and the Phineas Priesthood and the Aryan Nations had put a microchip in Timothy McVeigh's right buttock and how both evil ZOG and Christian Identity were fighting for Timothy McVeigh's soul. Everyone knew what was going to happen even if they didn't know the details and the consensus on both sides was to let the Civil War II come right on track and on time.

    Timothy McVeigh wanted to get caught, and so he was. The Shoah Trial proceeded to its conclusion. What looked like a one-term president became a two-termer as Bill Clinton governed as a moderate democrat. By the time Y2Kaos becum a bust, the militia movement was irrelevant as the klansmen and survivalist "militias" went back underground and the suburban "CONstipational militias" were seen collaborating with the feds. Today there are three to four times as many of these private paramilitary groups armed to the teeth as back in 1995 -- but they call themselves "survivalists" or "preppers" or "doomers" . . . anything but militias.

    I found the documentary entertaining but it was dishonest to its core. A bunch of race-mixing religious freaks who in the old days would have been let alone to be weird by themselves were murdered by the federal government at Waco. By telling us that no longer would ZOG let you live in peace by yourself formed a reaction which lasted for a few years. A Manchurian Oswald reacted and was duly executed. Now the combatants are armed to the teeth waiting for an excuse to engage in Armeggeddon. The System is weak and corrupt and unable to win this onrushing struggle. Words alone cannot describe how much we hate each other and can't live together in peace a generation after Waco and OKC.

    Thank you for this dishonest dogma-drama which told half the story from the ZOG point of view. It was unintentionally hilarious.

    Hail Victory!!!

    Pastor Martin Luther Dzerzhinsky Lindstedt
    Church of Jesus Christ Christian/Aryan Nations of Missouri
    Ten Thousand Warlords Project

    Pastor Lindstedt's Web Page
    Pastor Lindstedt's Archive Page & Christian Nationalist Forum


    • #3
      Man charged in anti-government bomb plot in Oklahoma City

      Man charged in anti-government bomb plot in Oklahoma City

      The FBI has arrested an Oklahoma man on charges that he tried to detonate what he thought was a 1,000-pound bomb, acting out of a hatred for the U.S. government and an admiration for Oklahoma City bomber Timothy Mc*Veigh, according to court papers.

      Jerry Drake Varnell was arrested shortly after an attempt early Saturday morning to detonate a fake bomb packed into what he believed was a stolen cargo van outside a bank in Oklahoma City, according to a criminal complaint filed in federal court. He was charged with attempted destruction of a building by means of an explosive.

      According to the complaint, over the course of a months-long undercover investigation by the FBI, Varnell made repeated statements about the extent of his hatred of the federal government.

      [These photos show what it’s like inside an American militia]

      In one conversation, he said he believed in the “Three Percenter” ideology — a form of anti-government activism that pledges resistance against the government on the belief that it has infringed on the Constitution, according to court papers. Those who subscribe to the ideology incorrectly believe that only 3 percent of the colonial population participated in the American Revolution, and they see themselves as their heirs.

      Varnell, 23, allegedly discussed a number of potential targets, including the Eccles Federal Reserve Board Building in Washington, D.C., an IRS building in Maryland and a Bank of America data center in Texas. Eventually, he settled on a BancFirst building in Oklahoma City, the court papers say.

      According to the complaint, Varnell expressed a desire to blow up buildings, but in a way that would minimize deaths or casualties, possibly by detonating the device at night when offices would be mostly empty.

      On June 26, Varnell discussed the possibility that people could be killed and said, “You got to break a couple of eggs to make an omelet,’’ according to the complaint.

      “That’s why people don’t do this s--- because, you know, you got to be able to overcome that little reality there,” he said, according to the complaint.

      As part of that conversation, as outlined in the court papers, Varnell said he wanted to do something that would “somehow cripple the government. Something that sends a message that says, ‘You are a target.’ ”

      Two weeks later, however, Varnell indicated that he wanted to detonate the bomb after work hours to prevent casualties, saying: “I’m down for whatever. Safety is number one.”

      Authorities said Varnell watched the construction of the fake bomb around 6:30 p.m. Friday. He then drove the vehicle containing the device to an alley adjacent to the bank building and parked it there, according to the FBI. After midnight, he twice attempted to detonate the bomb remotely, and shortly after those attempts he was arrested, according to the complaint.

      A group called “III% United Patriots’’ said Varnell joined in November, but they dropped him from the membership rolls as soon as they heard of Monday’s charges.

      “We don’t want anything to do with him,’’ said Dylan Hunter, a spokesman for the group. “We condemn any acts of terrorism. We condemn Timothy McVeigh, we condemn what happened in Charlottesville. What we want to do is support the Constitution of the United States of America.’’

      This story has been updated to include comment from the “III% United Patriots” group

      I am The Librarian