Subject: +quot;Element of Surprise,+quot; a Red Herring (re: Treasury/Waco) Date: Fri, 1 O
From: email@example.com (stephen)
Subject: "Element of Surprise," a Red Herring (re: Treasury/Waco)
Date: Fri, 1 Oct 1993 00:48:00 GMT
Following is a transcript of an AP article printed in the Dallas
Morning News on Saturday, February 27th, 1993, p. 34A, section H
-- the day *before* the raid on Mt Carmel.
"Surprise" could hardly be "the key" to an operation tied to public
"disclosures" about the targeted group the day before. Thus, the main
position of Treasury, that the element of surprise was mishandled, is
misdirected. The question should be -- why was the raid intended to be
a public spectacle?? Likewise, why now try to obscure that fact?
The *keypoints* of Government's "gameplan" for both BATF and FBI,
under both Treasury and Justice Departments -- for public propaganda
manipulations -- are most all pointed out the day before in the DMN
article enclosed below:
child abuse, implied molestation, brain washing, dangerous weapons,
polygamy, cult suicide, religious separatism, fanaticism, militancy,
and a terrorist faction all set to imperil the world from a well guarded
"fortress." Pretty juicy hot-buttons there.
And easy charghes to peg on a dead scape-goat, with few living witnesses
around, and only bull-dozed evidence left to show otherwise. Especially,
in a society that gets cheap vicarious thrills from an enhanced and edited
media-arena, (cp. collosseum). Hmmm...
It's curious that the wicked in this life always want a "go between,"
except in the one key area of their own personal salvation. And it's
instructive that King Jesus will continue to give them "go betweens"
-- as judges -- in the hereafter.
"Huh, I wonder what that could mean?"
| "For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all
-- J -- judgment unto the Son" (John 5:22)
| "And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment
| stephen was given unto them" (Revelation 20:4)
---< the article from the day before >---
WACO -- A heavily armed religious cult, followers of a charismatic
leader who claims to be Christ, is awaiting the end of the world in
a compound east of Waco, a newspaper report says.
The group of about 75 Branch Davidians, an offshoot of the Seventh-
day Adventist Church, has got "some very, very dangerous overtones,"
says Geoffrey Hossack, an Australian private detective who has inves-
tigated the followers of Vernon Howell for 2 1/2 years.
The cult has been in Waco since 1935, but former members told the
Waco Tribune-Herald that Mr. Howell -- its latest leader -- abuses
both adult and child members of the cult and claims at least 15 wives.
Mr. Howell denies these accusations, saying he has had only two
children. He married his wife, Rachel, in 1984 when he was 24 and
she was 14.
There is no telephone listing in the Waco area for either Vernon
Howell or David Koresh, the name he legally adopted two years ago in
The cult also is known to have a large arsenal of high-powered weapons,
the Tribune-Herald reported in a copyright story in its Saturday editions.
The newspaper said it spent eight months investigation the cult, talking
to more than 20 former members, plus reviewing court records and talking
to law enforcement authorities.
The Seventh-day Adventist Church strongly denies any connection with Mr.
Mr. Hossack, hired by a group of former cult members who fled to Austra-
lia, presented his findings to McLennan County authorities in 1990, but no
action has been taken. Mr. Hossack said he believes authorities will act
only if someone is killed.
"The consensus was there was not enough information at that time to
pursue a full-scale investigation," said Paul Gartner, then McLennan
County district attorney.
"Oh, it got my attention," said Ralph Strother, Mr. Gartner's top aide.
"I could see this sort of thing happening. To tell you the truth, the
thing that went through my mind is you've got a cult like Jonestown."
Jonestown was a settlement of Americans in South America's Guyana led
by the Rev. Jim Jones. On Nov. 18, 1978, more that 900 people there killed
themselves by drinking cyanide or were murdered.
Welfare workers from Children's Protective Services visited the cult's
compound at least twice last year to talk to the children there, according
to a former cult member and authorities.
Director Bob Boyd of Children's Protective Services said he could not
discuss any specifics.
Mr. Howell and his followers believe he is the lamb referred to in the
Bible's book of Revelation, according to testimony in a Michigan child
custody case. Followers believe he alone can open the so-called Seven
Seals, setting loose catastrophic events that the Branch Davidians believe
will end mankind and propel Mr. Howell and his followers into heaven.
Theologians consider the lamb to be a symbol for Christ.
"If the Bible is true, then I'm Christ," Mr. Howell, 33, told the news-
paper. "But so what? Look at 2,000 years ago. What's so great about being
Christ? A man nailed to the cross. A man of sorrows acquainted with grief.
You know, being Christ ain't nothing. Know what I mean? ... If the Bible
is true. But all I want out of this is for people to be honest this time."
Cult members live about 10 miles east of Waco in a 77-acre compound
called Mount Carmel. Guards reportedly patrol the grounds at night, the
newspaper said. Perched above the compound is a tower with lookout windows
facing all directions.
One law enforcement officer calls the compound a fort.
The Branch Davidians trace their roots to 1934, when Victor Houteff, a
member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, formed his own group in Los
Angeles and later moved to Waco.
Mr. Houteff's theological views -- especially his interpretation of the
book of Revelation -- did not fit Seventh-day Adventists' views, and he
split to form his own sect. It has had several leaders and divisions since
Mr. Houteff's death in 1955.
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Brian F. Redman)
Subject: The Tragedy After Waco
Date: Fri, 30 Apr 1993 00:28:37 GMT
Summary: Spin Doctors Tell Public What to Think
The Tragedy After Waco -- Public Response
by Erwin Knoll
(Editor of the *Progressive* and a regular panelist on the PBS
[Excerpted from an article in the *Christian Science Monitor*,
April 27, 1993 edition]
*Immediate* public reaction to the television images of the
"Davidian inferno... ran 10 to 1 *against* Attorney General Janet
Reno and the FBI. But by Tuesday, when the government's spin
doctors had gone on the offensive, 8 out of 10 messages to the
Justice Department were conveying approval, and by Wednesday the
polls showed that a clear majority of Americans gave their
blessings to the operation and its outcome."
"Such enthusiasm for an exercise that was botched from the
beginning, that ended in a horrible blood bath, and that
continues to pose agonizing questions, ought to dismay all of
"Why the initial assault by agents of the Bureau of Alcohol,
Tobacco and Firearms (ATF), an arm of the Treasury Department? We
were told that cult members led by David Koresh had acquired a
substantial arsenal of illegal automatic weapons. But such
arsenals are to be found in many communities all over our
country... [These other communities] are rarely subjected to
raids by armed federal agents. Mr. Koresh had bought his weapons
openly and had threatened no one with them. So what was ATF doing
there in the first place?"
"We were told there were 'reports' of possible child abuse within
the compound. None of those claims have been substantiated -- but
if they had been, since when does ATF deal with child abuse? This
much we know: The children who died because of last week's
federal assault will be abused no more."
"...even before the ATF mounted its [February] assault, leaders
knew their attack was expected. Why did they go ahead anyway?"
"We were told the FBI agents were exhausted and needed to act and
go home. Since when is fatigue a sufficient motive for assault?"
"What caused the inferno that followed the federal agents' tear-
gas barrage remains, at this writing, a matter of conjecture."
The author speculates that "...the Branch Davidians real crime...
was their stubborn refusal to bow to conventional orthodoxy and
"These are deeply vexing questions... but most vexing of all is
the willingness of Americans to rush to the government's support
before the answers are in, and in the face of overwhelming
evidence that wretched blunders have been committed."
Date: 23 Apr 93 14:43 PDT
Subject: Waco Coverup
Via NY Transfer News Collective * All the News that Doesn't Fit
WACO MASSACRE COVER-UP
By Deirdre Griswold
At his April 20 news conference President Bill Clinton tried to
justify the actions of his Justice Department and the FBI in Waco,
Texas, even as he distanced himself from responsibility. And then
he said he was surprised criticism was being aimed at federal
officials "because some religious fanatics murdered themselves."
What shocking language for a president to use after 86 people, 24
of them children, had just perished in a terrible fire. Has any top
U.S. official ever used the term "religious fanatics" before?
Certainly not to describe anti-abortion forces, even after they
firebombed clinics and murdered a doctor in Florida.
Clinton rushed to judgment in claiming the dead "murdered
themselves." The fire that consumed the Branch Davidian sect's
compound may well have been ignited by the federal authorities in
their assault on the group's compound.
While the FBI says it was a "mass suicide," the survivors who have
spoken directly to the media give a completely different account.
They say that an armored vehicle used in the attack knocked over a
lantern, starting the blaze and that there was no "suicide plan."
In fact, reporters who watched the scene with binoculars said the
fire broke out moments after an armored vehicle rammed one of the
All accounts agree that no fire engines were brought to the area
until after the buildings had burned to the ground.
ROLE OF THE STATE
Why has the president rushed to endorse the FBI attack and its
version of events? Even his own attorney general admitted the day
it happened that, in retrospect, the whole attack was "obviously
The FBI prepared the public for this assault when it started
feeding the media tales of abuse against women and children in the
compound. Both Attorney General Janet Reno and the president cited
child abuse as a pressing reason why the siege had to be ended
right then. But now those women and children are dead, not
liberated. And now FBI Director William Sessions himself says the
bureau had no recent evidence that children were being beaten.
The U.S. government seems once again to have massacred the very
people it claimed to be rescuing.
Progressive and class-conscious forces must ask themselves: Should
any confidence be placed in the capitalist state?
Can the terror exercised by the repressive apparatus of the
bourgeoisie--and it is certainly the most aggressive, most heavily
armed state in the world--ever advance the interests of the workers
and oppressed people?
The progressive movement has nothing in common with the ideology of
this religious sect. But it should be clear that this massive act
of terrorism by the capitalist state does nothing to enlighten the
masses or dilute the appeal of religious fundamentalism.
On the contrary, it will enhance the moral authority of such groups
among people outraged at the state's brutality.
The coverup has already begun. The afternoon of the massacre,
Attorney General Reno told reporters: "Today was not meant to be
D-Day. ... This was just a step forward in trying to bring about a
But a half-hour before the blaze began, FBI spokesperson Bob Ricks
had told reporters: "At this point we're not negotiating. We're
saying come out. Come out with your hands up. This matter is over."
If the FBI wanted a peaceful resolution, why did they ignore a
banner sect members had hung reading, "We want our phone fixed,"
indicating they wanted to negotiate?
The media didn't show the growing tension outside Waco in the days
before the assault. But an April 20 Wall Street Journal account
reveals the cops' mentality:
"Along public streets and highways, protesters had appeared with
placards denouncing federal agents as 'black-booted,
black-jacketed' murderers trampling both religious freedom and the
right to bear arms.
"Agents, angry at critical news media accounts, at one point used
an armored fighting vehicle to flatten a reporter's car that was
abandoned at the compound."
Reno said the federal agents were tired and couldn't be relieved,
so action had to be taken to end the siege.
Yes, they ended the siege, alright--just as they have so many times
before against oppressed peoples all over the globe. This time,
though, the capitalist state's terror came home in an exercise
aimed at showing that its authority is supreme and it will "take
out" anyone--white or Black, Christian or atheist--who challenges
SAM MARCY ON EVENTS IN WACO, TEXAS
Following is an interview with Workers World Party Chairperson Sam
Marcy on the events in Waco, Texas.
WW: Why did the government move in with such massive force against
the Branch Davidians?
Sam Marcy: Because they represented a challenge to the authority of
the capitalist state.
WW: How so?
SM: Koresh's idea was to establish a self-governing, autonomous
grouping, but with arms in hand. They differ from a myriad of other
religious orders in that these others subject themselves to civil
and state authorities--and for the most part are cooperative with
the capitalist state.
WW: Even so, there are hundreds like this around the country.
SM: That's true, but this one is hostile to the state and its
religion is regarded by the government as a hostile political
movement in religious guise.
WW: But there are many fundamentalist groups.
SM: Fundamentalist religious ideas are not the issue at all. It is
oriented toward competing not just within the general milieu of
capitalist society, but toward competing with the capitalist state
Let's remember the Pentagon document first released in the New York
Times March 8, 1992, which stated, "The U.S. must show the
leadership necessary to establish and protect a new order that
holds the promise of convincing potential competitors that they
need not aspire to a greater role or pursue a more aggressive
posture to protect their legitimate interests."
WW: Still, are there not others?
SM: This one is regarded as most formidable and hostile. A century
ago there were utopian communist grass-roots organizations in the
U.S. that tried to compete against the capitalist system, but in a
peaceful way. They ignored the class struggle, as James R. Green
pointed out in the book "Grass-Roots Socialism."
The politics of Koresh's group are reactionary, right-wing, but are
still in embryonic form and should be regarded as in a process of
development rather than as a finished phenomenon. The Pentagon, FBI
and the rest of the coercive apparatus brook no rivalry and no
Koresh's group might have disintegrated if left to its own devices
under stable economic conditions. If the economic crisis deepens,
however, and large contributions back such a grouping, that's
These groups in developed form have the potential of becoming
auxiliaries of the state in repressing oppressed people and the
working class. But there are other variants of development
depending on the course of the class struggle in general and the
anti-racist struggle in particular.
WW: What should be the attitude of the working class toward the
SM: The working class should oppose any government repression.
WW: Why? Isn't this a reactionary group, perhaps fascist in embryo?
SM: Any suppression by the government strengthens the capitalist
state. The state is the capitalist class in organized form.
Approving or aiding its acts of suppression boomerangs against the
Only an independent ideological struggle to expose the nature of
the group is helpful to the workers and undermines the capitalist
state in a revolutionary way.
(Copyright Workers World Service: Permission to reprint granted
if source is cited. For more info contact Workers World, 46 W. 21
St., New York, NY 10010; via e-mail: email@example.com.)
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From: email@example.com (Tim Crowley)
Subject: Child Abuse? Just the facts, Please!
Date: 24 Apr 1993 14:04:31 -0700
The Federal Pigs have claimed that one of the reasons they
attacked civilians with tanks is that they had "evidence" that Koresh
and/ or his followers were abusing children.
Is this true, or yet another Pig Lie?
This article appeared today in The Seattle Times, and is attributed to
the Dallas Morning News. I quote from it without permission.
"WACO, Texas - State childcare officials said yesterday they have never
been able to substantiate allegations that David Koresh abused children
in the Branch Davidian compound.
Case workers have interviewed all 21 children released during the 51-day
standoff, and Janice Caldwell, executive director of the Texas
Department of Protective and Regulatory Services.
"The children have not confirmed any of the allegations or described any
other incidents which would verify our concerns" about possible abuse,
Moreover, a 1992 investigation of complaints about the treatment of the
children in the cult headquarters yielded nothing, she said. That
inquiry included interviews with Koresh and some of his adult followers.
So more proof the the feds are nothing more than lliars and murderous
PIGS. Every statement they have made about this group is PROVING to be
lies. And still some people are foolish enough to believe the FBI and
BATF, still. How many times must some people be lied to, before they can
see the truth.
Seeeeee Ya firstname.lastname@example.org FUCK THE POLICE!!!!!
From: email@example.com (Brian F. Redman)
Subject: Koresh interview released
Date: Sun, 30 May 1993 00:59:02 GMT
March 28, 1993 -- The Associated Press is reporting that David
Koresh (leader of the Branch Davidian sect which held federal
forces at bay for 51 days near Waco, Texas) had claimed that his
group's gun battle with agents of the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco
and Firearms was "self-defense."
The report quotes Koresh as having said in a taped interview with
his lawyer, Dick DeGuerin, that his armed response to the BATF
raid was "the American way."
Referring to the BATF raid, Koresh is quoted as saying, "I don't
care who they are. Nobody is going to come to my home, with my
babies around, shaking guns around, without a gun back in their
Koresh further denied in the interview that there were any plans
for a mass suicide. "That's not even sane," he is reported as
Koresh stated in the interview that he planned on surrendering to
federal agents. "Once I do go out of here, I want to go out
walking," he is reported to have said.
[Note: The report says that the DeGuerin tape was given to the
newspaper the "Houston Chronicle." If anyone finds out anything
more on this I would appreciate it if you could let me know. Send
e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org]
From: email@example.com (Brian F. Redman)
Subject: Waco -- Additional Info
Date: Mon, 7 Jun 1993 20:42:28 GMT
The "Houston Chronicle" of Tuesday, May 25, 1993 carries a
front-page article based primarily on tape recordings made hours
after the February 28th shoot-out at the Mount Carmel compound
near Waco, Texas. The tapes contain, among other things,
conversations between David Koresh and BATF negotiator Jim
The recordings offer "further evidence that Koresh knew the
identity of the undercover agent placed by the [BATF] in the
Mount Carmel compound," and show that Koresh was aware of the
real purpose of this "Judas" at the very time the agent was
within the compound.
"The ATF repeatedly has said that Koresh was aware of the raid
well before agents arrived."
Attorney Dick DeGuerin, who represented Koresh and who was
allowed inside the Mount Carmel compound on several occasions to
meet with his client, "said the recordings contradict statements
by ATF officials that agents attempted to serve Koresh with
arrest and search warrants before gunfire erupted."
"DeGuerin also said the tapes support the version of events
related to him by Koresh -- that Koresh was willing to surrender
and would have allowed the agents in the compound to execute
their search warrants but was never given the opportunity."
According to DeGuerin, Koresh "repeatedly claimed that he
witnessed the arrival of cattle trailers full of agents and went
to the front door, only to be fired upon by the ATF agents."
"They did not make any attempt to talk to him," DeGuerin said.
"When he went to the door, he was met with a bullet immediately."
From Day 1 of the federal siege at the Mount Carmel compound
Koresh was willing to talk to President Clinton by phone. He is
quoted as saying, "If the president wants to give me a call, man,
this is a worldwide event. You know, I tried just saving people."
The article mentions an ongoing investigation into the tragedy
being conducted by the U.S. Treasury Department. Among other
things, the Treasury Department is seeking to determine whether
"such a raid should ever have been staged."
The article also alludes to a "congressional committee
investigating the events stemming from the Feb. 28 shootout." No
further details are given about this congressional committee. Who
is chairing it? Are the hearings open to the public, or are they
being held in private due to "national security" reasons?
Synopsis by Brian Francis Redman
"Culture is an instrument wielded by professors to manufacture
professors, who in turn manufacture more professors."
-- Simone Weil
From: Matt.Giwer@f326.n3603.z1.FIDONET.ORG (Matt Giwer)
Subject: Waco news
Date: Sat, 12 Jun 93 01:28:00 PDT
St. Petersburg Times, 10 June 1993 (Reuters)
-- A tape recording of the call is played as government hearings on
the Waco standoff begin.
Moments after federal agents began their raid against the Branch
Bavidian compound in Waco, Texas, cult leader David Koresh called an
emergency number asking for help, according to a tape made publick
"David Koresh, Mount Carmel Center. We're being shot all up out
here," Koresh said in the call to the 911 number of the McLennan
County sheriff's office in Waco.
The dramatic tape recording was played at a House appropriations
subcommittee hearing on the Feb. 28 raid by the Bureau of Alcohol,
Tobacco and Firearms.
"You see, you brought a bunch of guys out here adn you killed
some of my children. We told you we wanted to talk," Koresh told Lt.
Larry Lynch of the sheriff's office.
"There is a bunch of us dead adn a bunch of you guys dead now.
That's your fault," Koresh said. Heavy gunfire could be heard several
times in the background of the recording.
Four ATF agents adn several members of the heavily armed cult
were killed and 16 others wounded in the shootout.
After a 51 day siege, Koresh and some 80 others died in a fire
April 19 at the cult's compound after FBI agents tried to force them
out with tear gas.
Lynch tried to arrange a cease-fire with Koresh, but Koresh began
talking about the Bible and prophecies. "We knew you were coming and
everything. You see, we knew before you even knew," Koresh told Lynch
before the call ended.
Lynch also talked with cult member Wayne Martin, who said, "I
have a right to defend myself. They started firing first."
A cease-fire was eventually reached so that dead and wounded
agents could be removed.
MASS MURDER IN WACO
[Excerpted from the June 1993 issue of "Liberty" magazine, from
an article entitled "Mass Murder, American-Style" by R.W.
After the FBI had blasted the Branch Davidians "with ear-
shattering noise and aimed powerful electric spotlights into
their windows at night to prevent them from sleeping, and turned
off the community's water supply and cut off its sewers," after
the FBI "had cut off water to the area but not brought in fire-
fighting equipment," the government decided to move in and
"rescue the children".
As Attorney General Janet Reno rationalized government actions,
"The sanitation situation within the compound we were told was
beginning to deteriorate." President Clinton echoed this
rationale when he complained about "The children... being forced
to live in unsanitary and unsafe conditions." This would be
heartwarming except that it was the government itself that first
cut off the water and sewers, thus causing these "unsanitary
conditions" to begin with.
The government painted itself as a noble guardian of "the
children." We find that "a week before the assault, the FBI said
that it would not use tear gas on the compound, because it feared
for the safety of the children. It had evidence that the adults
had gas masks, but the children did not." However, a week later,
the FBI's "operational plan was to pump in gas until the masks
failed -- which would require *eight hours of continuous
gassing*. What did they think would be happening to the people
*without* masks (i.e., the children)?"
So, to "protect" the children, the government sends in Bradley
M-728 tanks "to punch holes in the walls of the buildings in
which the Davidians lived, and to pump poisonous tear gas into
their homes at 15 second intervals" while FBI loudspeakers
proclaim, "This is not an assault."
No fire trucks on the scene. Live ammunition. Large quantities of
fuel. "Wooden buildings in the compound, filled with baled hay,
inflammable liquids, and explosive and incendiary ammunition,
were a terrible fire hazard, especially once the FBI punched
holes in their walls through which wind could blow and spread any
"There were two charges brought to the judge who had issued [the
search warrant]: that the group had abused children and that the
group possessed weapons without the required license."
"The charges of child abuse had been thoroughly investigated a
year earlier by state authorities, *under whose jurisdiction
child abuse lies* [my emphasis], and the Branch Davidians were
"It is also manifest that the second charge [illegal weapons]
lacked any factual basis. The ATF accused the Davidians of
possessing fully automatic weapons... Yet in two pitched battles,
one with the ATF on February 28 the other with the FBI on April
19, there has not been a single report of the use of automatic
weapons by the Davidians."
"Although it is impossible to know for sure [B.R. especially
because the 'crime' scene has been destroyed], the hypothesis
that the Branch Davidians violated no laws at all is entirely
consistent with what is known."
"This isn't just business as usual. The government is not just
lying. The government is murdering its citizens."
"Liberty" is a libertarian and classical liberal review of
thought, culture and politics, published bi-monthly.
Subscriptions are $19.50 for 1 year (6 issues). Foreign
subscriptions are $24.50 for 1 year (6 issues). Address all
correspondence to: Liberty, PO Box 1181, Port Townsend, WA 98368.
Synopsis by Brian Francis Redman
"Culture is an instrument wielded by professors to manufacture
professors, who in turn manufacture more professors."
-- Simone Weil
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Brian F. Redman)
Subject: Conspiracy for the Day -- July 26, 1993
Date: 26 Jul 1993 05:43:48 GMT
-+- Gunning for Koresh -+-
The August, 1993 issue of "The American Spectator" carries an
excellent article on the recent Waco tragedy ("Gunning for
Koresh"). The article, by Daniel Wattenberg, probes beneath the
media's whitewash of the event. It examines, in particular,
details of the search warrant used to justify the raid. It also
seeks the true motivation for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and
Firearms (BATF) assault.
-+- The Affidavit in Support of the Warrant -+-
The affidavit filed in support of the warrant mentions, among
other things, a sinister prophecy made by religious leader David
Koresh. On December 4, 1992, Joyce Sparks, a state of Texas child
abuse investigator was interviewed by BATF agent Carlos Torres.
Sparks told Torres that during her final visit to the Mount
Carmel compound on April 6, 1992, Koresh had told her "...that he
was the 'Messenger' from God, that the world was coming to an
end, and that when he 'reveals' himself the riots in Los Angeles
would pale in comparison to what was going to happen in Waco,
"Unless the man really was a prophet, he could not have told her
this. The Los Angeles riots broke out on April 29, 1992, more
than three weeks after Sparks had last visited Koresh."
The affidavit in support of the warrant states that one Marc
Breault had "participated in firearm shooting exercises conducted
by Howell [a.k.a. Koresh]." What is not mentioned is that Breault
From a legal standpoint, it is important to remember that Koresh
had *never been convicted* of a violent crime, or indeed of any
crime. He had had a history of always cooperating peacefully with
law enforcement authorities. According to McLennan County Sheriff
Jack Harwell, Koresh was "...real nice to him, real congenial...
They had their property line, and they were basically good
people. All of 'em were good people."
After the holocaust at the Branch Davidian compound, Texas
Rangers recovered about 200 guns from the ashes. This amounts to
about two guns per resident. The average number of guns owned by
Texas residents is about four guns per person. This puts the
supposed "arms cache" at the compound into a different
perspective from that portrayed by an hysterical media concurrent
with the tragedy.
As for allegations that the Branch Davidians possessed "machine
guns," the article notes that today, in Texas, 16,500 residents
own machine guns. Owning a machine gun in Texas is legal,
provided only that the gun was *manufactured* before May 19,
The public was told that the Branch Davidians had equipment for
converting semi-automatic weapons into fully automatic weapons.
Yet such conversions are not clearly illegal. According to Robert
Sanders, former enforcement chief of the BATF, "This is a very,
very convoluted, technical, angels-dancing-on-the-head-of-a-pin
kind of argument. And there are no published rulings telling you
what is and what isn't [a violation]."
None of the deponents to the affidavit offered "...evidence that
Koresh was assembling or converting those parts listed by the
BATF into machine guns or other illegal destructive devices."
The affidavit filed in support of the warrant was submitted on
February 25, 1993. Regarding "suspicious parts deliveries" to the
Branch Davidians, none of the information contained in the
affidavit is less than eight months old. The "American Spectator"
article claims also that the 15-page affidavit is "larded with
filler [i.e. with irrelevancies]."
-+- "Child Abuse" -+-
While true that the Branch Davidians had been investigated for
alleged child abuse, this investigation had been closed on April
30, 1992, with no proof of the allegations. The only "evidence"
obtained was the following tale from the previously mentioned
Joyce, "L.A. riots", Sparks. "She talked to a boy about seven or
eight years old. The child said that he could not wait to grow up
and be a man. When Ms. Sparks asked him why he was in such a
hurry to grow up, he replied that when he grew up he would get a
'long gun' just like all the other men there."
"Even interviews with children released from the compound during
the 51-day siege 'have not confirmed any of the allegations or
described any other incidents which could verify our concerns
that they have been victims of physical or sexual abuse.'" Of
course, all this is in addition to the fact that child abuse does
not fall under the jurisdiction of the BATF.
-+- BATF Motivation for the Raid -+-
"Why would ATF have decided on a high-risk military-style raid
when they might have picked Koresh up on one of his regular
jogs?" An accompanying article points to the BATF's declining
reputation as a possible motivator for the February 28th "Charge
of the BATF Brigade." Two of the BATF's exploits prior to the
Waco disaster point to a Bureau drunk with its own power:
* April 1991 -- The home of Del Knudson was raided by a
23-man team outside Colville, Washington. His wife was
held in a room while her frantic 6-year-old daughter
cried for her mother in another room and a 1-year-old
daughter was left in a bathtub. An elderly neighbor who
offered to watch the children was handcuffed. Some
misidentified gun parts were confiscated -- all legal.
No charges were filed.
* December 1991 -- Agents raided John Lawmaster's home
in Tulsa, with two television crews in tow. Agents
knocked down the front and back doors, broke furniture,
pulled down a ceiling, dumped out drawers and closets,
broke into locked filing cabinets and left guns and
ammunition strewn about the unsecured house. Nothing
illegal was found. The ATF refuses to pay damages.
The "American Spectator" article further states that BATF image
and morale had been "...devasted by a January 12  expose'
on '60 Minutes.'" The CBS newsmagazine had broadcast interviews
with female BATF agents who charged sexual harassment occurred
routinely at the agency. Those interviewed by "60 Minutes"
further charged that "...the agency intimidated and punished
victims and witnesses who had pressed sexual harassment claims."
Immediately prior to the assault on the Mount Carmel compound,
the BATF did not bother to make connections with local law
enforcement officials -- officials who knew and were known by the
Branch Davidians and who had dealt with them amicably in the
past. The BATF *did* however make certain to make connections
with television news crews and to bring them along on their raid.
"This looks like a 'rice bowl raid,' undertaken to boost the
agency's standing among the Washington bureaucrats and
legislators who fund it. It was appropriations season in
[B.R. Shortly after the final holocaust at the Mount Carmel
compound, the CBS show "60 Minutes" aired a segment focussing on
problems within the BATF. Showing great courage, and risking
damage to their careers, about a dozen BATF agents came forward
and blew the whistle on the mayhem within the agency. At the end
of the taped segment, Dan Rather added that these whistleblowers
believed that the motivation for the raid at Waco had been PR to
boost the agencies tarnished image. Because Rather added this
observation *after* the taped portion of the segment, this final
addendum to the broadcast *may* not appear in CBS transcripts.]
-+- The Unofficial Version of Feb. 28th Raid -+-
Koresh's attorney, Dick DeGuerin, relates how his client
described the raid itself as follows:
He knew they were coming, and he was watching for them
and saw these two cattle trailers roar up, and people
start screaming out of the back of them, screaming at
the tops of their lungs, not anything like, "This is a
search" or "We're agents" or "Put up your hands" or
anything like that. It was just screaming, yelling, like
Marines storming the beach.
He stepped out the door, held up his right hand and
said, "Wait, go back, there are women and children in
here. Let's talk about this."
And he was met with, first, one shot that barely missed
his head, hit the door right by his head, and then a
barrage of shots, and he ducked back inside... They
didn't get him. They did kill Perry Jones with that
first barrage... After that, those on the inside ran to
their rooms, got their guns and started firing back.
During the subsequent shoot-out, persons at the compound placed
emergency calls to the McLennan County Sheriff's 911 switchboard.
"In the first call, Wayne Martin, a top Koresh lieutenant and
also a Waco attorney well known and liked in the local legal
community, pleads with Sheriff's Lieutenant Larry Lynch:"
LYNCH: Mount Carmel?
MARTIN: Yeah. Tell them there are children and women in
here and to call it off.
LYNCH: All right. All right. Hello? I hear gunfire. Oh,
MARTIN: Call it off.
Koresh placed the second 911 call. "After making a grimly ironic
note of the lieutenant's name ('Hey, Lynch?... That's a kind of
funny name there.')... [Koresh] in the fog of battle, laments the
government's failure to talk before the shooting:"
KORESH: You see, you brought your bunch of guys out here
and you killed some of my children. We told you we
wanted to talk. No. How come you guys try to be ATF
agents? How come you try to be so big all the time?
LYNCH: Okay, David.
KORESH: Now, there's a bunch of us dead, and a bunch of
you guys dead. Now -- now, that's your fault.
LYNCH: Okay, let's -- let's try to resolve this now.
Tell me this. Now, you have casualties. How many
casualties? Do you want to try to work something out?
ATF is pulling back, we're trying to --
KORESH: Why didn't you do that first?
"But a half-hour elapsed between the first call and the first
radio contact between the Sheriff's office and the ATF at the
site. An hour passed before Lynch could reach the ATF on a secure
line. Sheriff Jack Harwell, the chief law enforcement officer in
the jurisdiction, had been largely left out of the loop by the
ATF throughout the investigation and the raid. Might the outcome
have been different if his and his department's accumulated
insight into the ATF's prey been adequately tapped? If their
record of successful, direct interaction with Koresh and his
flock had been studied as a model? Maybe, maybe not. With federal
agents and Davidians alike dropping dead in the furious crossfire
a few miles out of town, the local sheriff's department couldn't
get a federal agent on the phone. But the cameras were there to
capture footage of a hundred black flak jackets and blue ATF
windbreakers swarming into Caliban's kingdom."
The preceding has been excerpted from the August 1993 issue of
"The American Spectator." What you have just read is an
incomplete summarization of the entire article. The article
itself goes into much greater detail than this brief synopsis.
For a full account, read "Gunning for Koresh" in "The American
"The American Spectator" is a monthly review. It is published
monthly at 2020 N. 14th Street, Suite 750, Arlington, Virginia
22216. One-year subscription is $35.
Today's conspiracy brought to you by.......
Brian Francis Redman
: Aperi os tuum muto, :
: et causis omnium filiorum qui pertranseunt. :
: Aperi os tuum, decerne quod justum est, :
: et judica inopem et pauperem. :
: -- Liber Proverbiorum XXXI: 8-9 :
From: email@example.com (firstname.lastname@example.org AARC SFA State Univ.)
Subject: Waco and the Intimidated Press
Date: 11 Jul 93 15:48:28 CST
Several nights ago on Tom Valentine's Radio Free America broadcast
I heard independent journalist Louis Beam relate a most fascinating
and disturbing story about treatment of the press at Waco. I was
glad to see that The SPOTLIGHT printed an edited transcript of this
interview. If you can't get Valentine's broadcasts over AM/FM, he
can be heard on 7435 MHz shortwave.
From The SPOTLIGHT July 12, 1993
FEDS TRIED TO SILENCE LONE VOICE FOR FREEDOM AT WACO
Government efforts to clamp down on press coverage of the
holocaust at the Branch Davidian church in Waco, Texas were exposed
on the May 26 broadcast of The SPOTLIGHT's nightly call-in talk
forum, Radio Free America, with host Tom Valentine.
The guest was journalist Louis Beam, who was attempting to
cover the events in Waco from an independent point of view. Beam
described the way in which the authorities sought to silence him
during official press conferences being conducted by the BATF and
An edited transcript of the interview follows.
V: You just returned from Waco where you were covering the
events at the Branch Davidian compound for the 'Jubilee'
newspaper, and something very interesting happened to you.
Beam: That's right. I was attending the so-called news conferences--
actually they were media shows--that the FBI and BATF [Bureau of
Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms] put on each morning at the Waco
One of those mornings when I was in attendance, Dan Conroy, an assistant
director from the national BATF office, called on me to ask a question.
Conroy pointed me out, and I asked my question, which was simply this:
"Sir, many of the people who saw the video of the original February 28
BATF assault on the Branch Davidian church compound consider the tactics
used as reminiscent of those used in Nazi Germany and by the KGB in
Soviet Russia. Are we witnessing the emergence of a police state here
in the United States?"
Conroy turned ash white, and there was a pause for about three seconds,
and he said, "I refuse to answer that question."
My question was obviously answered, however, by his response and by
what happened afterward.
V: What about the other reporters in the room?
Beam: They were trained puppies. The whole reason I decided I had to be
at those news conferences was because the reporters who were there were
accomplices with the government, working with the government.
I think from now on we have to consider the Establishment news media as
an arm of the federal government. They were -- and are -- working hand
in hand with the federal government.
The government was handing out press releases each day, outlining what
they claimed was happening, and the media would use these press releases
as the basis upon which to write the stories. There was no independent
research, no inquiring questions -- just drivel and propaganda handed to
them by the federal government.
V: You say the validity of your question was proved to you by
what happened next.
Beam: Well, as I got up to leave, I noticed police officers and federal
plainclothes officers approaching me from every conceivable direction.
By the time I was approaching the door, I was surrounded.
A woman (who ultimately turned out to be a police sergeant) put her hand
on my arm and said, "Mr. Beam, you will have to come with me."
I responded by asking, "Who are you?"
She was dressed in blue jeans and a blouse of some sort. There was
nothing to identify her as a police officer.
After I asked her identity, she said, again, "You will have to come with
I said: "I am not going with anybody. Identify yourself."
Then she gave me her name, and said she was an officer with the Waco
Police Department. I said, "If I am not under arrest, I am not going
She said, "Let me have your drivers license and your press card."
I complied with her request, and she reached out again as if to direct
me toward the back of the room where all of these federal agents were
located. My response to that was to sit down in the nearest chair.
By that time others in the news media saw what was happening, and the
cameras had been turned on, and I was filmed by no less than 30 cameras--
maybe as many as 50. I saw the attention was intimidating this police
officer so I launched into my own mini-press conference.
I stated to the media: "This is what happens in America when you ask a
One newsman shouted out, "What was the forbidden question?"
And I repeated what I had said. I guess that newsman had been asleep
during the press conference waiting for his handout to write his story.
The police sergeant then took my license and my press card, and she and
the FBI and BATF agents huddled. I found out they had run a computer
check on me to see if there were any warrants on me.
I just sat there with the media around me and explained they needed to
start asking important, penetrating questions. They had, instead, been
asking questions such as "What type of vehicle was driven up to the
compound to deliver milk to the children?"
I was sick to my stomach at the sight of people being held hostage by
the hostage rescue team of the FBI, and these media people were acting
A few moments passed, and the sergeant came back and said, "Mr. Beam,
I'm going to ask you one more time to come with me."
I stood up -- with all the cameras running -- and said, "If I am not
under arrest, I'm leaving here," and started for the door.
I knew I was not under arrest, and I hadn't violated any laws, and the
sergeant knew that too. So she just followed me. As I walked outside
the door, the sergeant ran up to me, handed me my driver's license and
my press card and left, not saying a word.
I said, "Thank you, ma'am," and then once again implored the reporters
to at least act as though they had graduated from high school and to
ask a few meaningful questions.
V: You went back to another press conference, didn't you?
Beam: Yes I did.
Now this first incident happened on March 14. On March 17 I returned,
although there had been articles in the Waco papers about the previous
incident. They reported that I had asked "the forbidden question."
V: Did the Waco papers print the forbidden question?
Beam: Yes they did. In fact, it went out on the wire service and was
carried at least once on Cable News Network (CNN). Now I guess CNN
can tell their subscribers they carry "all" the news.
At any rate, when I returned to the convention center, I found they had
moved the location of the press conference. However, they had set up
sawhorses as a barricade, and you now had to present your press card
to the police and the BATF who were standing guard.
V: So they had a new process as a way of screening the reporters?
Beam: That's right. Previously they had checked my press credentials
when I had gone to the press conference, and then everything was fine.
However, as I approached, I saw all of these police giving me the evil
eye. I thought, "This is not good."
I continued up to the barricade. I showed them my identification, but
the same sergeant I had dealt with earlier held up her hand and said,
"I'm sorry, but you cannot come in here."
I said: "Pardon me, I believe you're mistaken. I'm here to cover the
press conference for the newspaper I write for."
She responded, "Mr. Beam, I said you cannot come in here, and you must
I had to think fast, but I was determined to do my duty, so I said:
"Ma'am, I am either going to attend this news conference as a reporter
or I am going to jail. Either step aside and let me in or arrest me."
The sergeant said, "You are under arrest."
V: Were you taken to jail?
Beam: They handcuffed me and took me to the back where they held me away
from the other members of the press who had spotted me being arrested
at the front door.
As they were taking me to the rear, one of the puppies (that is, one of
those alleged "news" reporters) called out, "What are they arresting
I answered, "For asking the forbidden question," and that again made the
I was held there for a while, and they took me to county jail, locking
me up and taking the film from my camera. They told me I was charged
with "criminal trespass."
When I asked who the complainant was, they said, "We don't have that
So, actually I was being arrested, and there was no complainant.
Then when it was time for my bond hearing, a magistrate came to my cell,
rather than taking me to a courtroom. The magistrate told me my bond
was $1,000. I told the magistrate that I didn't have $1,000 and
that I am a disabled veteran.
Miss Evans (the magistrate) said, "All you have to do is come up with
15 percent of the total."
I told her: "I will not pay the state of Texas one penny to violate my
civil rights. I will either get out of hre on a personal recognizance
bond or I will rot in this jail cell."
The magistrate looked at me for a moment and said, "Who are you?"
I said, "I am the person who asked the forbidden question at the news
conference the other day."
She looked at me again and said: "That question needed to be asked.
I'll get you a personal recognizance bond form, and you can get out of
V: Do you think the magistrate will lose her job now?
Beam: I don't know if she will or not, but if we've reached the point
where people will get fired for asking what's going on in this country,
then we should just throw up our hands and admit we're living under a
communist regime and live under those rules.
We need to end these charades. This is a free country, and we had better
act like it's free.
V: You've had your own rough experiences with the federal
government. You were once put on trial, along with several
others, in Fort Smith, Arkansas on trumped-up charges of
"sedition" -- planning to overthrow the federal government.
However, you were all acquitted, weren't you?
Beam: That's right. The government had this preposterous tale that 14
men (myself among them) were going to overthrow the government of the
United States. The jury laughed them right out of the courtroom.
After the trial was over, some of the newspapers interviewed the jury
and asked them why they found us not guilty (since the media had
already convicted us even before the trial started).
One of the jurors replied it ws obvious the government had concocted
this entire scenario using the help of men who were in jail and who
were promised freedom if they agreed to testify against us.
The second reason, they said, was that out of over 100 government
witnesses, every one of the witnesses who tried to put me or the others
into the allege conspiracy had been paid by the government.
One of these witnesses got $125,000, and another $88,000 -- and he
was the least paid. So the witnesses had been bought and paid for.
V: How much did the government spen on this frame up?
Beam: The 'Houston Chronicle' quoted a federal attorney to the effect
that the government had spent $4.5 o $5 million on this effort to put
us in jail.
Actually, several of the people who were on trial were already in jail.
One of them was already doing 240 years in jail. One was already on
death row. This was an effort to play "guilt by association" to
railroad the others.
-------- END OF ARTICLE ---------
This article was from the July 12th edition of The SPOTLIGHT.
U.S. subscription rates are $36 for one year, $66 for two years,
300 Independence Ave. SE
Washington, D.C. 20003
In the authoritarian state, it is regarded as a self-evident truth that
the control of history is an inalienable right of government. All words are
created free and equal.
--Jim Garrison, New Orleans, La.
From: email@example.com (Richard Hatch)
Subject: Re: Waco and the Intimidated Press
Date: 12 Jul 1993 03:42:28 GMT
Joe Gaut has posted an article from the Spotlight newspaper
which describes the alleged treatment received by Louis Beam
at Waco press conferences. The "forbidden question" which Gaut
fails to ask is: Who is Louis Beam? The follow-on question is
What is Jubilee, the "newspaper" for which Beam was writing?
Beam is a "former" Grand Dragon of the KKK.
Jubilee is a virulently anti-Jewish newspaper. For example,
the May/June 1992 edition goes so far as to revive a classic
anti-Jewish theme--that Jews engage in ritual murder of Gentile
children. The source promoted by Jubilee for this garbage is
Arnold S. Leese's book _Jewish Ritual Murder_. Leese was a
hardcore Nazi who founded the British Imperial League of
I hope Gaut is proud of the sources he uses. Perhaps he still
has enough decency left to denounce Beam and his new friends.
* Forwarded by Linda Thompson
* Forwarded Using QuickBBS 2.76 Ovr
* Forwarded at 05:28 on 15-Oct-93
****** WASHINGTON TIMES NEWSPAPER, October 9, 1993 *************
Final Edition, Section: A Page: A9 By: Jerry Seper
FBI still probing video of tank at Waco
A Justice Department official who helped write a report on
the role of the department and the FBI in the Branch Davidian raid
says a video purporting to show a tank shooting flames into the
compound is under review.
Richard Scruggs, an assistant to Attorney General Janet Reno,
said the video - by Indianapolis lawyer Linda Thompson - "raised
our eyebrows and caused the same concern" others have expressed.
Distributed to news organizations around the country, the
video purports to show one of the FBI tanks at the Waco compound
firing flames into the building before the start of the fire.
Miss Thompson has claimed it proves the FBI started the blaze
that killed 85 persons, including 24 children.
Mr. Scruggs said that Justice officials submitted the
video to the University of Maryland for expert analysis and
that preliminary results have not been conclusive.
He said that the armored vehicle used by federal authorities,
on loan from the military, was not equipped with any type of
flame-throwing capability and that the only way a flame could have
come from it would have been through some type of "busted hydraulic
line or something like that."
He said Justice officials had examined the vehicle and found no
evidence of broken parts. Another analysis of the tape has been
ordered, he said.
Mr. Scruggs noted that a preliminary assessment of the video
is that what appears to be a flame shooting out of the
vehicle was a flash from the dispersant - carbon monoxixde - used
to propel the chemical agent CS into the compound.
A second posibility, he said, was a defect in the way the video
"I don't know what it is," he said. "I'll have to be honest with you."
He noted that the fire at the compound did not erupt for at
least 35 to 40 minutes after the light flash is observed in the
An inquiry into the video was continuing, Mr. Scruggs said.
Justice Department takes heat over Waco report
WASHINGTON (UPI) -- The Justice Department and the FBI have taken
a beating in the press since the release of a report on the Waco,
Texas, siege last spring.
The report, released Oct. 8, largely praised the FBI, which took
over the siege after four agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco
and Firearms died in the intitial raid. But the report gives no
concise rationale for the FBI's use of tear-gas spraying armored
vehicles to end the siege on April 19.
Up to 85 people, 25 of them children, died at the end of the
siege from a fire started by cult members or from gunshots by cult
members, the Justice Department said.
The New York Times called the results a "whitewash" in an
editorial Tuesday. The Baltimore Sun called the report "a flawed
examination" in an editorial the same day.
Some support for the department came from The Washington Post,
which said in a Tuesday editorial that "it is difficult to cast
blame after reviewing the evidence."
PROGRESS!! The mainstream papers are finally sitting up and taking
notice of the coverup! At the DOJ press conference last Friday,
several questions were asked about the Waco Tape and DOJ had no good
answer (but were VERY aware of the tape and its contents). DOJ was
visibly nervous in response. Reporters are now onto the story. This
is the BEGINNING, not the END of the investigation. Stay tuned! The
truth is being exposed, slowly but surely!
Subject: Linda Thompson update
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Searchnet Zec)
Date: Sun, 12 Sep 93 12:36:00 -0500
This editorial was in the Arizona of 8/22. It was written by
William P. Cheshire, Senior Editorial Columnist.
LOOKING BEYOND THE WACO SMOKE
An anonymous tipster sent me a videotape the other day
describing in startling detail the government's shootout, siege
and ultimate destruction - possibly deliberate - of the Branch
Davidian compound outside Waco, Texas.
The tape is the production of Linda D. Thompson, an
Indianapolis lawyer who traveled to Waco to protest the
government's initial assault on the compound, which left four
agents dead, and now devotes most of her time to investigating
how 80 or so people died 50 days later when the place was
According to agents of the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol,
Tobacco, and Firearms, the followers of guru David Koresh set
fire to their own building when it was stormed by tanks and a
small army of heavily armed governments agents. But the
videotape, assembled from the government's own film, clearly
shows one of the tanks crashing into the building, then backing
out again, fire belching from its turret.
This received virtually no publicity because the media were
kept under wraps. On a story of this magnitude, reporters and
cameramen normally would have been on the scene providing first-
hand coverage. But in this instance the press acquiesced in
Search and arrest warrants were sealed, and when government
agents settled down for what was to be a seven-week siege, the
press was allowed to get no closer than two miles from the Branch
As the tanks rolled and the feds broke out their grenades and
submachine guns for the final assault on April 19, reporters and
cameramen gathered behind distant roadblocks, waiting for
government handouts. Miles away the compound was being burned to the ground.
A school board can't meet in secret without the media going
ballistic, Thompson says, but here the government conducted a
massive armored assault on civilians, unencumbered by witnesses.
"I'm very discouraged that reporters weren't being more
aggressive in Waco," Phil Record, ombudsman for the Fort Worth
Star-Telegram, told Mark Holmberg of the Rutherford Institute in
Charlottesville, VA. "If there had been a few neutral eyes up
there, I would feel much better about it".
Thompson is more blunt. "Reporters sucked up everything the
ATF and FBI told them," she says. "They're a bunch of weenies
and sheep. None of them had the guts to ask challenging
questions or the intelligence to ask constitutional questions."
FLAME THROWER IDENTIFIED
I reached Thompson by phone at the American Justice
Federation, a civil liberties group she operates. She now has
identified the tank seen backing out of the Branch Davidian
building, she told me.
"It was an M67A1 tank manufactured by Chrysler," she said.
This tank, equipped with a flamethrower, is no longer in service
and, according to Thompson, had to be taken from "the graveyard"
for the Waco assignment. The clear implication is that the
government deliberately set fire to the Branch Davidian compound,
killing some 17 children and 69 adults.
I asked how she found out about the M67A1, a little-know
weapon to which even Jane's Armour and Artillery gives only brief
mention. "The driver who drove it from Fort Hood called me," she said.
At the end of the Waco madness, President Clinton said the
Branch Davidians had "burned themselves up" - and allegation
that, in the light of Linda Thompson's allegations, Congress
needs to investigate.
Already, The Washington Post reports, the Waco embarrassment
has prompted a major reshuffle at the ATF. Some officials may be
forced to retire, the Post says, and the chief of the
intelligence division could be denied "future promotions."
Such punishments seem hardly proportionate.
As a consequence of the Rodney King beating in Los Angeles,
two police officers were tried for the assault and acquitted,
then tried again for civil rights violations and sentenced to two
and a half years in the federal penitentiary.
How is it that federal agents responsible for the death of
more than 80 men, women and children may be permitted to retire
or even to keep their present jobs?
From _THE JUBILEE_, September/October 1993 (Vol. 6, No. 2):
WACO: THE BIG LIE
By Linda D. Thompson
Chairman, American Justice Federation
Americans were lied to by the FBI and media throughout the Waco siege,
beginning February 28, 1993 through the tragic end -- April 19, 1993.
The lying, in itself, is a travesty, a blade through the heart of
everything for which this great country stands. The ATF and FBI have no
excuse. They lied, they knew they lied when they did it and they are still
Members of the media may claim they were deceived by the lies of the FBI
or that they printed only what they were told. But therein lies the blame
-- no one from the media questioned what they were told, investigated, dug a
little deeper, or tried to ferret out any semblance of truth. And now, the
federal agencies are covering up the massacre. The media, realizing the
horror of what they have done, seem to have taken the position that they,
too, must cover it up, hide the shame and the blame.
Why was the ATF in Waco?
Why did the ATF go to Mount Carmel? In the search warrant, the ATF
claimed to have been looking for guns that were being converted to machine
guns, but provided absolutely no proof or reliable information that there
was any reason whatsoever to believe that illegal automatic weapons were
being made at Mt. Carmel.
On the day of the raid, ATF spokesman Jack Killoran, interviewed by
telephone in Washington, D.C., by Linda Thompson in Indianapolis, Indiana,
said that the search warrant the ATF agents were trying to serve was for
"illegal machine guns and explosive devices." He also said that "since
1986, it is illegal for anyone to own a machine gun."
It is NOT illegal to own a machine gun in the United States. A person
who wants to own a machine gun need only pay a $200.00 tax and complete a
registration form to legally own a machine gun. The ATF keeps the
paperwork. So if the Branch Davidians owned an "illegal" machine gun, it
meant that they had failed to pay a $200.00 tax. Surely no one in his right
mind would believe that the failure to pay a $200.00 tax justifies a
military assault on a house full of men, women and children.
But the ATF had a pretty good idea of whether or not there were illegal
weapons at Mt. Carmel. In July, 1992, the ATF had visited Hewitt Arms, a
gun store in Waco, where the Branch Davidians had legally purchased most of
their guns. They examined the records at the store. Since records
existed, it is a pretty safe bet that not only were those weapons legally
purchased, the ATF had copies of those records, too. Nonetheless, while the
ATF was at Hewitt Arms, the owner, Henry McMahon, called David Koresh and
told him that the ATF had a problem with him buying so many guns. Koresh
told McMahon to "tell them to come on out." The ATF declines this offer.
This inspection was not mentioned in the search warrant.
In fact, the allegations supporting the ATF's "probable cause" to ask for
a search warrant were so weak, the ATF had to pad the search warrant
application by throwing in a lot of innuendo, information the source of
which was more than eight months old and second hand, and references to
child abuse and multiple wives. The ATF has no jurisdiction whatsoever over
child abuse or polygamy, and certainly neither of these things, even if they
had been true, would have given them any reason to go to Mt. Carmel to
search for weapons violations.
Even these allegations had already been proven false, twice. The source
of these allegations of "child abuse" and sexual molestation of children was
Marc Breault, a self-proclaimed "prophet" who had joined the Branch
Davidians in 1987 and was kicked out in 1989 for attempting to take over the
leadership with his grandiose claims.
Marc Breault vowed revenge. For the next two and a half years, Breault
made allegations, which grew more and more outrageous with the passing of
time. He contacted agencies in Australia, Britain, and the United States,
demanding that "something be done about the Branch Davidians" and alleging
child abuse. Cult Awareness Network picked up Breault's allegations and
began a campaign of their own.
Cult Awareness Network (CAN) is a group, started by the daughter of the
late Senator Leo Ryan (killed at Jonestown) that targets religious groups
around the world for hate campaigns in the media. They always make the same
allegations against each group they attack: "Perverted sex," "child abuse,"
and "brainwashing." It reads like a worn out script, -- repeated many times
against various groups. Its headquarters was formerly in the B'Nai B'Rith
building and it receives funding from the Anti-Defamation League.
Not coincidentally, two socalled "cult experts," Margaret Singer and
Louis Jocelyn West, always pop up in support of allegations by CAN, to be
interviewed by the media lap dogs who never bother to check their
credentials. Both Singer and West were involved in CIA experiments with LSD
and mind control in the 60's and 70's. Another CAN expert, Galen Kelly, was
recently convicted of kidnapping charges.
Rick Ross, who claims to be a "cult deprogrammer," also works for CAN.
He was advising the ATF on "cults" for at least a month before the raid.
Yet, Rick Ross has no expertise in much of anything, except theft, for
which he has a felony conviction. He was recently indicted for kidnapping.
Another tired old tactic of CAN is to parade a "former cult member"
before the TV cameras, to parrot the allegations of "child abuse" or
"perverted sex." not coincidentally, these "former cult members" in every
case, no matter which "cult" is under scrutiny, have a history of medical
illness and have been "deprogrammed." "Deprogramming" is, in fact,
brainwashing. It involves kidnapping a person, isolating them in a room
with the "deprogrammer" who deprives them of food and sleep until their will
It was CAN who had complained to Texas authorities that the Branch
Davidians were "abusing children." Of course, the welfare department
intruded into the Branch Davidian home, twice, to investigate these charges
but found them to be baseless.
Yet, the ATF relied upon these so-called "experts" and regurgitated these
same, baseless allegations in the search warrant, and the media repeated the
allegations over and over and over demonizing and dehumanizing the Branch
Not coincidentally, "demonizing" a target is a well-known propaganda
technique. Much like what has happened here in the United States with the
socalled "war on drugs" and the "evil drug lords." We have given up our
rights -- for a Police State -- in the name of the "war on drugs." And it
got us Waco! So why wouldn't the ATF and FBI expect this tactic of
"demonizing" the target to work? We didn't disappoint them.
Most of America sat glued to the TV set, believing every lie that was fed
to them letting the Branch Davidians be tortured, day after day, because, of
course, they were "perverted," they were a "cult," they were "not like us."
But, long before the ATF brought out the search warrant, they already
knew that the bulk of the allegations in the application were lies.
For an agency that was supposedly looking for "machine guns and
explosives," the ATF launched its assault with no ambulances or even so much
as an explosive ordnance (bomb squad) expert on hand.
Who Shot First?
Examining the film footage of the initial assault, it is plain to see
that the ATF arrived in full battle gear. All of the agents are dressed in
full black SS uniforms or military camouflage fatigues (guess they thought
there would be a forest inside the house...). Many were carrying sniper
rifles and MP5 sub machine guns. Most of them carried baseball, canister,
and pineapple grenades on their belts, and many of them carried knives in
sheaths on their backs.
Three helicopters, only one of them national guard, were also on hand.
In one of the first _Associated Press_ (AP) wire stories to appear, John
McLemore, a Channel 10, KWTXTV reporter from Waco said, "They came right in,
parked right by the front door and made a frontal assault on the building."
But by the next day, McLemore was quoted only as saying, "It sounded like
a war zone, people were being hit, you could hear people screaming with the
agony, the pain of it." The spin doctors had arrived to make certain that
we heard only what we were supposed to hear and read only the "official
[Photograph captioned, "Federal Agents made turret holes and piles sandbags
inside a barn behind the house at Mt. Carmel, where snipers positioned
themselves to shoot Branch Davidians who ventured out of the house. The FBI
has confirmed that all 52 members of the FBI Hostage Rescue Team were in
Idaho during the Weaver massacre and at Waco during the 51 day siege on the
The film that was released to the public shows two teams of four ATF
agents scaling a ladder onto the roof. ATF Agent Ted Royster was quoted as
saying that these teams were supposed to secure the roof within 22 seconds
of arrival. We can presume that this footage, that shows these teams going
up on the roof, was the footage of the first 22 seconds of the raid. As one
team arrives at the window, three of the agents go into a room of the house
through a window. No one is shooting at these agents at any time.
A lot of shooting can be heard from the ground where the rest of the ATF
agents are. There is a small cut in the film as the agents climb into the
window. One must wonder why this cut was made. The fourth agent on the
roof waits outside on the roof until these three agents are through the
window and inside the house.
There is a "glitch" -- a missing piece of film -- at this point. Having
examined the film, it is a poorly edited segment and there is a noticeable
"jump" as the ATF agent on the roof moves from a prone position on the roof,
to position himself at the window. The reason for the glitch isn't readily
obvious, but investigation tells the story.
All of the Branch Davidians interviewed by this writer have said that a
helicopter fired down into the roof of the house. Dick Deguerrin, the
attorney who was allowed inside Mt. Carmel during the siege, is reported in
_Soldier of Fortune_ magazine, October, 1993 issue, to have said that he saw
the upstairs rooms and they looked like swiss cheese from the overhead
gunfire. In the "911 Tapes" released to the public, David Koresh and Wayne
Martin can be heard talking about the helicopter shooting down at them,
saying, "Here it comes again, the helicopter's coming again."
Listening to the background noise on the film footage just before and
after the "glitch" appears, a helicopter can quite clearly be heard as it
gets closer and closer, then overhead. Then the cut in the film. The cut
was made to cut out the sound of the helicopter firing down into the roof,
very likely firing down not only on the Branch Davidians inside the house
(where the helicopter gunfire killed a nursing mother and two other people),
but also down on the three ATF agents now inside the house.
After this cut in the film, the fourth ATF agent is seen at the window,
his hand extended inside the window as if he has just tossed a grenade and
there is a corresponding "boom" sound shortly afterwards, consistent with a
concussion grenade. He then pulls back the curtain at the window and
appears to fire into the room, twice, with his MP5 sub machine gun. At this
point, someone inside the room begins to fire through the walls and holes
appear in the walls. One bullet strikes the agent on the roof in the helmet
causing him to fall, grabbing his head. He then quickly recovers and bolts
down the ladder to the ground below. His only injury comes when he misses
the ladder rung and injures his knee.
Four agents were killed that day. The ATF released a diagram, depicting
how the three agents who went in the window were killed. This appeared in
the March 3, _Dallas Morning News_. In the April 5 edition of _Newsweek_,
an anonymous agent was quoted as saying that agents had been killed by other
Shortly afterwards, an ATF Agent named Keith Constantino appeared on CNN
and _Current Affair_ to tell a tale that he was one of the three agents who
went up on the roof (he never mentions there were actually four agents). He
then claims that he was one of the three agents who went in that room. He
claims that on entering the room, he and the other two agents took fire from
two sides, that he ran out of bullets, jumped out the window, and down the
ladder and that the other two agents were killed.
This story is easily shown to be a lie by watching the video, _Waco, the
Big Lie_, because there are never any bullets fired inside that room until
the fourth agent on the roof throws a grenade into the room and it is the
fourth agent who gets down the ladder and he never goes into the room at
Since the tape, _Waco, the Big Lie_, was released, however, the ATF is
now claiming that none of the agents who went in the room died (they are
saying that none of the four dead agents went into the window, so
presumably, the ATF is now claiming these same four men were killed
elsewhere). The ATF claims that during the "glitch" in the film, all the
agents who went into the room were fired upon and got out the window and
down the ladder and the man we see on the roof is merely providing cover as
the other three get down the ladder. Again, this is easily proven to be a
lie because up until the point that the fourth agent is shown on the roof,
no shots are fired inside that room, so he isn't providing "cover" for
anything. Additionally, listening to the helicopter sounds in the
background, it is clear that the "glitch" is no more than a very short
duration, perhaps a minute.
Three of the four ATF agents who were killed that day were Clinton's
bodyguards during his presidential campaign. The press failed to give this
much attention, but it was Clinton himself who called attention to the fact.
In Clinton's address to the Treasury on March 18, in the Cash Room, he said:
"My prayers, and I'm sure yours, are still with the families of all four
of the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agents who were killed in Waco: Todd
McKeehan and Conway Le Bleu of New Orleans; Steve Willis of Houston, and
Robert Williams from my hometown of Little Rock. Three of those four were
assigned to my security during the course of the primary or general
The United States "Pravda" Machine
Proving that the media was part and parcel of the fullblown lying and
cover-up at this stage of the siege, the only segment of the initial raid
film footage that was broadcast nationally showed just the shots of the
agents entering the window, immediately followed by a very shortened version
showing only the shots being fired from inside the house and the fourth
agent falling down on the roof (not showing that he went down the ladder)
giving the impression he had been killed, along with a voice over that said
the ATF met a "hail of gunfire" from the Branch Davidians.
The story grew and grew, overnight. By the next day, March 1, the ATF
was claiming to have been "out-gunned," and that the Branch Davidians "were
waiting for us."
Also by the next day, the newspapers and television were spreading more
of the "official truth." AP reported that "the cult's fortress, called
Mount Carmel, is dominated by a tower with lookout windows facing in all
directions. Guards reportedly patrol the 77acre grounds at night." A cult
fortress. What a picture that paints of what was, in fact, a wooden frame
house, handmade, that didn't even have insulation, only a masonite outer
Later that day, the propaganda was in full bloom: "To tell you the
truth, the thing that went through my mind is you've got a cult like
Jonestown," Ralph Strother, an aide in the district attorney's office was
quoted as saying in an Associated Press article. As the siege continued, we
heard various claims from the FBI that the ATF had "really" raided the
Branch Davidians because they had heard the "Branch Davidians were planning
a mass suicide like Jonestown." Even if these outlandish claims were true,
the ATF has no jurisdiction over religion or planned suicides.
On March 7th, six days into the siege, 'Face the Nation' interviewed an
ATF spokesman who replied, "no comment," when asked if any of the Branch
Davidians had a gundealer license (FFL license) or a machine gun license.
This was followed up quickly by a network ad for a "news" show coming up
"next week" having to do with "the dangerous number of people getting FFL's
and how alarmingly easy it is to get one."
The FBI later claimed that the Branch Davidians had been "planning to
invade Waco." There was never so much as an iota of proof or substantiation
for this claim presented, nor would the FBI have any jurisdiction over what
would simply be a state crime if the Branch Davidians had, in fact, been
planning to "invade Waco."
Later, to justify the abuses heaped upon the Branch Davidians, the FBI
claimed that a (seriously wounded) David Koresh was holding 89 adults and 17
children as "hostages" and that cutting off all utilities, shining bright
stadium and spotlights on the house 24 hours a day, and blaring sounds such
as a dentist drill, rabbits being slaughtered, and Tibetan monk chants at
the house were merely "negotiation techniques."
Even though it was the dead of winter and the FBI had cut off all the
utilities to the house, Bob Ricks was quoted repeatedly saying, "Mr. Koresh
has always kept his apartment fully air conditioned and heated. It's our
understanding that he probably is the only one in the compound that is
allowed that privilege," Ricks said.
One of the most overlooked stories that occurred on the first day of the
siege surrounds Mike Schroeder, a Branch Davidian who had gone to work the
morning of the raid, only to learn of the raid at work. On foot and
unarmed, he left work, walking back to Mt. Carmel. He passed a roadblock of
State troopers and spoke to them. He got as far as the Perry farm, some
three hundred yards from the property line at Mt. Carmel, where he was shot
seven times and his body left for days. Another man who had been with him
was arrested and had told the ATF that Mike Schroeder was left in the field,
This information appears in the indictment paperwork for Norman Allison,
proving the ATF knew Mike Schroeder was shot on February 28 but left his
body there. No one bothered to collect Mike's body or inform his family for
several days. In the meantime, the FBI released a story to the press
claiming that three men had tried to "shoot their way out" of Mt. Carmel and
that one of them had been shot. More lies. But the truth was, a young man
was shot down in cold blood and he wasn't even near the Mt. Carmel property,
merely in the same neighborhood. And yes, this was the United States of
America, in Texas, not Somalia or Afghanistan.
FBI Confirms Weaver Snipers were also in Waco.
The FBI has confirmed that both the sniper team and the assault team that
were in Idaho during the siege on the Weaver family were sent to Mt. Carmel
in Waco, Texas. Bill Cotter, FBI public affairs officer in Washington,
D.C., confirmed that an advance team of agents from the Hostage Rescue Team
of the FBI, headed by Dick Rogers, was sent to Waco, Texas on March 1, the
day after the initial raid. This team was later joined by the entire 52 man
contingent of FBI Hostage Rescue Team members and another 90 FBI SWAT team
members from offices all over the United States.
There are 52 members of the Hostage Rescue Team, based out of Washington,
D.C. The HRT is divided into two teams, either of which can perform the
same functions. The Hostage Rescue Teams, based out of Washington, D.C.,
has 26 members per team. Each of these teams has an assault squad and a
sniper squad. The HRT has a wealth of military equipment, including C5A
cargo planes, tanks, and helicopters. Two of the black, unmarked
helicopters, and two dark, nearly black, flat green helicopters, that were
flown almost continuously over the Mt. Carmel center, belong to the Hostage
Rescue Team. All 52 members of the Hostage Rescue Team were in Idaho during
the Ruby Creek Massacre and during the Waco Massacre.
During the Weaver trial Gerry Spence, Randy Weaver's attorney, skillfully
cross examined members of the HRT, including Dick Rogers, Commander of the
HRT, and Lon Horiuchi, unmasking the cowboy cop mentality, incompetence and
brutality of the FBI HRT.
Readers may remember from the Weaver trial that Lon Horiuchi, an HRT
sniper squad member, shot and killed Vicki Weaver as she stood, holding her
10-month-old baby in her arms in the doorway of her home.
In Waco, the HRT was joined by another 90 members of FBI SWAT teams,
highly trained tactical assault units, from all over the country, according
to Bill Cotter. One of these units was the FBI SWAT team from Alabama.
Ann Richards, Traitor of Texas
Ann Richards authorized the use of the U.S. Army tanks, helicopters,
jeeps, humvees, and other equipment that was used against the Branch
Federal Law, Title 18, United States Code, Section 1385, absolutely
forbids the use of military against United States citizens and provides for
a term of imprisonment and a fine:
"Whoever, except in cases and under circumstances expressly authorized by
the Constitution or Act of Congress, willfully uses any part of the Army
or the Air Force as a posse comitatus or otherwise to execute the laws
shall be fined not more than $10,000 or imprisonment not more than two
years, or both." 18 U.S.C. Section 1385.
To get around this law, the ATF and Ann Richards both claimed initially
that the tanks were authorized under another law, the Drug Interdiction Act,
Title 32, United States Code, Section 112, which allows the use of National
Guard equipment for drug interdiction activities.
Relevant portions of that law are shown below. It is plain that even
when national guard are authorized to be used as "law enforcement," it can
only be when they are not called up by federal authorities, and only under
the very strict limitations of a plan, written in advance, and they must be
requested by the governor of the state. This plan must be drafted once each
year and submitted to the Secretary of Defense.
"(b) Plan requirements. A plan referred to in subsection (a) shall
(1) specify how personnel of the National Guard of that State are
to be used in drug interdiction and counterdrug activities;
(2) certify that those operations are to be conducted at a time
when the personnel involved are not in Federal service; and
(3) certify that participation by National Guard personnel in
those operations is service in addition to annual training required under
section 502 of this title.
"(c) Examination of plan.
(1) Before funds are provided to the Governor of a State under
this section, the Secretary of Defense shall examine the adequacy of the
plan submitted by the Governor under subsection (b).
(2) Except as provided in paragraph (3), the Secretary shall carry
out paragraph (1) in consultation with the Director of National Drug Control
"(d) Statutory construction. Nothing in this section shall be construed
as a limitation of the authority of any unit of the National Guard of a
State, when such unit is not in Federal service, to perform law enforcement
functions authorized to be performed by the National Guard by the laws of
the State concerned. . . .
"(f) Definitions. For purposes of this section:
(1) The term "counterdrug activities" includes the use of National
Guard personnel, while not in Federal service, in any law enforcement
activities authorized by State and local law and requested by the Governor."
32 U.S.C. Section 112 (1992), Drug interdiction and counterdrug
So, no matter who explains it or how it is explained, the tanks that were
brought into Mt. Carmel were brought there illegally, remained there
illegally for 51 days, and were finally used to murder what remained of the
Branch Davidians on April 19, 1993. In a letter to one of the thousands of
people who have written to Ann Richards to protest the invasion of Texas by
federal agents, Ann Richards replied that she had "no control over federal
government agents." Someone needs to educate Ann Richards (and the governor
of Idaho, too) about State sovereignty and the right of a governor to throw
federal agents out of the state. Too little, too late, perhaps, but it
isn't too late to wake up the governors of the other 48 states, and the
state police, too.
From: "John R Kennedy"
Subject: Agent Allegedly Refused Koresh's Offer
Date: Sat, 11 Sep 93 13:17:07 -0600
Agent Allegedly Refused Koresh's Offer
AUSTIN - A federal agent rejected Branch Davidian cult leader David
Koresh's offer to show the government his weapons cache seven months
prior to the agency's commando-style raid, a Houston attorney said
Dick DeGuerin, who represented the deceased cult leader, said a former
Waco weapons dealer who often sold to Koresh phoned the cult leader
from another room while an agent from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tabacco
and Firearms searched the dealer's sales records in July, 1992.
DeGuerin said that when Harry McMahon told Koresh about the ATF inves-
tigation, Koresh responded by inviting the federal agent to inspect
the weapons at the Mount Carmel compound. But the ATF agent got upset
and rejected Koresh's offer, DeGuerin said.
Speaking at a Texas Freedon of Information Foundation conference,
DeGuerin said such a conversation at least indicated the Feb. 28 ATF
raid on the compound might have been avoided. The raid erupted into
a gunbattle with four agents killed and 16 wounded.
Six Branch Davidians died in the raid and first day of the shoot-out,
and about 85 other cult members died, including Koresh, when the com-
pound exploded into flames to end the 51-day seige.
DeGuerin said McMahon phoned Koresh, saying: "There's a guy here from
the ATF looking at my books and he's asking a lot of questions about
you and your guns."
According to DeGuerin, Koresh responded: "Well, tell them they can come
on out and they can see the guns."
When told about the offer, DeGuerin said: "The ATF agent goes nuts and
gets angry and says `we don't want to do it that way.' "
Neither McMahon or his attorney, Robert Montserrat, could be reached
to verify DeGuerin's statements.
Jack Killorin, an ATF spokesman in Washington, D.C, said it would not
be surprising for federal agents to reject an offer by Koresh to in-
spect the cult's weapons. "The preferred method by the law is going
with the standard of getting a warrant before entering a home," Killo-
rin said. "We execute such warrants."
Despite McMahon's warning, Killorin said Koresh likely knew he and the
cult were under investigated.
"Mr. Koresh was no fool," Killorin said.
At the conference, member of the press told how the ATF and FBI attemp-
ted to control the flow of information about the raid and siege.
Several journalists suggested that the siege might not have ended so
tragically if they had been able to talk to the cult members inside the
The FOI conference also included a "Legislative and Public Access"
seminar chaired by Tony Pederson, managing editor of the Houston Chro-
nicle. The panel discuessed the public's right to know versus its
right to privacy.
Pederson and other panel members expressed concern that some public
agencies--particularly school districts and other local agencies--were
attempting to circumvent the Texas Open Records Act by overcharging
the public and news media for open records.
Friday evening, Pederson also became the first active journalist to
receive the foundation's prestigious James Madison Award for his role
in ensuring that state lawmakers understand the importance of main-
taining public access to government documents and meetings.
Pederson, 42, was given the annual award for serving for more than a
year as chairman of Texas Media, an organization that fought to keep
the Texas Open Records Act and Texas Open Meetings Law from being
watered down during the 1993 legislative session.
From: email@example.com (Donald R. McGregor)
Subject: Re: ST JANET IS INNOCENT AGAIN
Date: 9 Oct 1993 12:47:29 -0700
>Umm, even though I am something of a hermit, I have seen/read enough
>public news media material to conclude that items 4, 5, 7, 8, and
>10 are derived (at least in part) from statements which Ms. Reno
>made at public functions, including press conferences.
From the SF Chronicle 10/9:
"NEW REPORT ON WACO CULT RAID CONTRADICTS STATEMENTS BY RENO"
'..Moreover, the chronology says, investigators found no evidence of a
factor cited by Reno to justify the assault: child abuse within the compound
during the standoff.
...Reno defended the report at a news conference yesterday but
refused to answer questions about discrepancies between it and her
original account of the assault.
...In the chronology, the Justice department said there was no
evidence of child abuse at the compound during the siege or even
enough evidence to arrest Koresh on such charges before the
February 28 raid, although former cult membes had told law
enforcement officials that Koresh was having sex with minors.
In its description of the factors leading to the decision to stage the
assault, the chronology does not include any mention of exhausted FBI
agents needing to be relieved....'
Don McGregor | "What if there were no hypothetical questions?"
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Workers World Service)
Subject: Waco: Cover-Up of Murderous FBI Raid
Date: Mon, 18 Oct 93 23:55:03 EDT
Via NY Transfer News Collective * All the News that Doesn't Fit
MORE COVERUP OF MURDEROUS FBI RAID IN WACO, TEXAS
By Gary Wilson
The official report is in on the massacre of the Branch Davidian
sect in Waco, Texas. But the question remains: Why did the
government do it?
The official explanation given at the time by Attorney General
Janet Reno was that the attack was ordered "because of the
children." The Justice Department investigation released Oct. 8
contradicted this, saying "there was no evidence of child abuse at
the compound during the siege or even enough evidence to arrest Mr.
Koresh on such charges before the Feb. 28 raid." (New York Times,
So killing all the children in order to "save" them from some
unnamed abuse was not the reason.
The department's report is more a coverup than a revelation. The
only point that comes through is that the investigators--all from
the Justice Department which includes the FBI--concluded that the
FBI did no wrong. Deputy Attorney General Philip B. Heymann, the
supervisor of the investigation, will probably get a bonus this
year for a coverup well done.
The report does not even attempt to answer a new and damning piece
of evidence. According to a CBS Radio news report on Oct. 9, a
videotape of the FBI attack shows a tank crashing through the house
where 75 people were burned to death. On the front of the tank is
a clearly recognizable flame thrower.
This video, CBS said, has been shown on two TV stations. The CBS
report attempted to dismiss it by emphasizing that it is being
distributed by a person sympathetic to the Branch Davidians.
(Copyright Workers World Service: Permission to reprint granted
if source is cited. For more information contact Workers World,
55 West 17 St., New York, NY 10011; via e-mail: email@example.com.)
+ NEW NUMBERS! NY Transfer News Collective SAME ADDRESS +
+ Guests: Members Only: Internet: +
+ 212-675-9690 212-675-9663 firstname.lastname@example.org +
Subject: More on the Waco Massacre
Date: 29 Oct 93 10:30:57 CST
Ken Fawcett, a private citizen who resides in the Waco area, was disturbed
by the events at Waco and launched his own investigative review of the
matter. He made the following contribution to The SPOTLIGHT. jwg
From The SPOTLIGHT, Oct. 25, 1993
Official Evidence of Texas Raid Doesn't Jibe With Evidence
The conclusions of an independent investigation into the events surrounding
the bloody raid on the Branch Davidian compound in Waco reveal numerous
discrepancies between the official version and that of witnesses, tape
recordings and photographs.
By Ken Fawcett
The raid on the Branch Davidian compound in Waco was initially
planned as a very safe operation to bolster a sliding public image and
at the same time accentuate the need for more gun control. Scripted
responses of being "outgunned," made by Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and
Firearms (BATF) spokesperson Sharon Wheeler, indicate a third possible
motive, an impending request in appropriations for additional funding
for heavier and costlier tactical ordnance.
The search and arrest warrants, as has been previously pointed
out, are fraught with errors and assumptions. Most of the warrants
contained extremely stale, slanted and vindictive information obtained
from the embittered, banished "prophet" Marc Breault.
Breault's affidavit, obtained from a 1992 child custody hearing,
forms most of the government's probable cause.
Breault had not been in the group since 1989. Breault is legally
blind, and his statements of having seen stockpiles of weapons and
instances of child abuse are in reference to "dreams or visions" he had.
The fact a warrant was granted at all raises serious questions
about whether collusion exists between McLennan County officials, the
district court, the U.S. Attorney's Office, and/or the BATF. In any
case, a "no-knock" warrant was not issued, meaning BATF had no authority
to be smashing windows or clambering on the roof.
The raid was not designed or planned to allow for casualties
on either side. However, the circumstances surrounding two of the
four BATF fatalities warrant deeper study with possible criminal action
against persons within the BATF, Texas Department of Public Safety and
McLennan County Sheriff's Office for charges ranging from obstruction
of justice to murder.
The deaths of the other two asgents and most of the five injuries
resulted accidentally because a three-pront armed assault was mounted
upon what amounted to little more than a cardboard box. It is unclear
at this stage why the BATF injuries were overstated in comparison to
those acknowledged by raid commanders Ted Royster, Phil Chojnacki, and
Chuck Sarabyn as recorded on the 911 tapes.
It's very disturbing that two of the dead agents had publicly
criticized the BATF top-level managers on national television about two
years earlier. The agents had their identities electronically concealed,
but CBS was able to release this information now that the agents had died.
In the weeks following the raid, BATF claimed the raid failed
because the element of surprise was lost, when, in actuality, the raid
depended upon the occupants of the complex being forewarned so as to allow
for the evacuation of children and women to bunkers or lower floors from
their normal residences on the second and third floors.
This is confirmed in conversation between Sheriff Lt. Larry Lynch
and Waco Police dispatcher Jayni Sykora. On tape 1, side A, Miss Sykora
says, "Sure hope those kids are out of the way." Lynch responds, "No,
he says, 'There's kids in here...'
"We know that. They've got some underground stuff."
When the undercover agent known as Robert Gonzales realized David
Koresh was not overly paranoid about the impending raid, that is, he was
not ordering the children into the bunkers, he tried to stop the assault.
Attempts included honking the horn and flashing headlights.
Indeed, the agents who stopped sect member David Jones were able
to view his car subsequently travel to the complex, to alert his friends,
at least 45 minutes before the raid ever commenced. Numerous experts
have testified that surprise was impossible on such an isolated structure,
and to insist the BATF was "ambushed" is an affront to intelligence of
the American people.
Statements from sect survivors indicate underground tunnels were
collapsed by heavy rains or otherwise unusable. Close-ups of the front of
the building reveal almost all BATF fire from the front went into the
second and third floor, principally to the right or south of the front
door. A BATF blueprint of the building with names of sect members written
in, reflects where people were stationed during the raid.
These positions were affirmed by tape recorded phone conversations
with sect members remanded into the jail. Not surprisingly all but four
of the 21 persons shown stationed on the second and third floor, south
end, are among the eventual fatalities.
UNARMED WOMEN AND CHILDREN
Examination of the vehicles that agents fired from behind reveals
few projectiles came from the building and those that did entered from
ground level trajectories. This confirms earlier reports that only
unarmed women and children were on the upper floors.
Why then are those agents directing their fire upstairs in all
videotape segments of the front parking lot? Why would they not return
fire toward the emanating points of what controlled fire they were
BATF spokesperson Ed Hartnett says publicly on March 1 that
gunfire from the front was controlled.
Statements by David to CNN and KRLD and even to the dispatcher
at the 911 center about some of his children being killed are supportive
of the mathematical calculations on collateral damage, given the
construction of the building and the type of ammo used by the BATF.
BATF spokesmen are now being reprimanded for repeatedly lying
to the public. Covering up the botched raid is not sufficient to warrant
the expenses the BATF and FBI delved out in the so-called stand-off.
The only thing worthy of such a massive cover-up is what
came out in the end anyway, that a disproportionate number of children
and women were killed as a result of the activities of the very first day.
The specification of aluminum powder in the BATF search warrant
is foreboding of what was pumped into the fire on April 19.
The medical examiner in Fort Worth, Dr. Rodney Crowe, stated in
a taped interview July 30 that the walk-in refrigerator contained within
the above-ground concrete blockhouse (bunker) was melted. FBI agent
Bob Ricks said he believes many of the women and children tried to
"bunker down" inside this refrigerator.
A fire, without some kind of metal powder accelerant, would be
incapable of melting a stainless steel refrigerator contained in a
Widely distributed video footage depicting three agents smashing
into a rooftop window and then appearing to engage in a gunfight in the
room was a staged event "for the camera." This is acknowledged by
Sheriff Jack Harwell in a taped telephone call to David Koresh. During
this call Harwell asks Koresh his "position."
The response is "What? They killed a baby girl. There's crippled.
BATF as of this writing freely admits that none of the agents
shown on the tape died in the raid, and all are back at work. What was
the justification for lying in the press briefings about the circumstances
of the deaths of the agents.
David Koresh listened intently to those conferences, and the
consternation he suffered over being publicly accused of killing agents,
one of whom was injured and helped by the Davidians, is evident in his
statement to Sheriff Harwell, "We let 'em come in and get one of the guys.
They said they didn't. That's a lie. That, there was--a couple of, uh,
two or three guys upstairs, out--"
Harwell interrupts that they (BATF) have changed that story, it
was for the camera, whereupon Koresh states, "Well, it's all over the
The latest version (now changed three times) of how and where
the BATF agents died is that two died on the ground, one on the roof
and one in the chapel.
We have a videotape clip of an agent turning to his left and
firing into the chapel from under an aluminum ladder. He then calls to
the cameraman to summon an ambulance. Right after this segment on the
tape another agent starts shouting instructions and asks who is on
Three to four shots are fired, and a second agent shouts "No,
An agent in the distance is heard to query, "Hey...Hey, is he
aiming back over this way?"
ACCOLADES TO POLICE
With specific reference to the 911 tapes, accolades are due to
the Waco, Texas Police Department for preserving those tapes in the face
of incredible odds. Without the 911 tapes most of this investigation
would have been limited to the chopped-up video of the raid, the
statements from survivors and the recorded phone call between Harwell
From these tapes it is evident that the government retained at
least one operative inside the complex throughout the botched raid. The
person is identified only as "Fred" on the tape.
Fred says they are "faking gunfire with these people" after
getting Miss Sykora's attention by addressing her as Ron. He wants
media representatives to call him at Martin's phone number. Then he
whispers into the phone heavily, "hang up the phone...Wheeler, hang up
We learn on tape 6 that BATF agents believe all calls out of
the complex had been diverted to the undercover house across the street.
An agent named Dino is somewhat disturbed when Lynch tells him
he's not across the street, but rather "downtown Waco, Texas" and that
the call is being taped. BATF had forgotten to have Davidian Wayne
Martin's business line diverted.
Obviously the video tape and photos of agents being dragged
out of the complex and carried on the news truck raise still more
questions. Two of the agents exhibit advanced symptoms of rigor
mortis. And from the time Martin first calls 911 to ask for the firing
to stop until the time BATF claims to have removed its last injured
agent from the scene, three full hours have elapsed.
It is extremely clear from the tapes that either the BATF's
communications are non-existent and/or the BATF forces view this as
a military assault and will settle for nothing less than total victory.
When Martin tells Lynch he has to pass the word on the cease fire,
he's actually referring to passing the word out to the BATF forces.
Corroborating evidence is seen on the videotape of the raid.
Agents are shown here shielding the TV camera from viewing a
corpse with a plastic bag over the head and torso. Though this
location is behind an outhouse and is isolated from the main forces,
none of the three agents is wearing a radio.
Also, the balding agent who ultimately ends up on the news
vehicle is photographed being carried from the back of the AMT ambulance
in the complex driveway, in a sleeping bag, toward the news truck. Why?
Though the TV newsman who helped evacuate the agents on the day
of the raid seemed very upset when he gave his initial reports of the
incident on February 28, he has since developed a friendly rapport
with the Davidian survivors, and even attended one of their wedding
ceremonies as a guest.
If the incident occured as he, "the only reporter on the scene,"
originally reported, that is, the "agents were immediately pinned down
by gunfire coming through the walls," and subsequently helped carry
out some of the reported 20 fallen agents, I doubt he would be able to
befriend the perpetrators of such heinous carnage so soon after the
Though little attention has been directed at the methods employed
by federal agents conducting the raid, the public must ask if we as a
democratic society are prepared for armed assaults such as this, where
agents are seen throwing hand grenades and concussive devices blindly
into windows and firing MP5 submachine guns into and through the walls
of what is legally described on the McLennan County tax rolls as a church.
Further, if survivors' accounts that helicopters fired
indiscriminately through the roof are true, then truly little is left of
our precious right to feel secure in our own persons and properties
against unreasonable searches and seizures.
The testimony of the attorneys who saw first hand the bullet-
riddled ceilings will affirm that, yes, the helicopters took their toll.
BATF SPOKESPERSONS LIED
BATF spokespersons originally maintained no fully automatic
weaponry was used in the raid, but in checking the inventory list filed
by the government, several MP5 Heckler-Koch full-auto submachine guns
were used by the BATF and turned in for test firing at the forensic lab.
It has now been learned the Davidians did not return the fire
of the BATF for several minutes, if at all.
Most of the rifles in the church were boxed for the coming gun
show in Austin or had been removed from the scene prior to the raid by
Paul Fetta earlier that day.
If this is true, how did the Davidians fight back? The answer,
judging from examination of the outbuildings, trees, poles and vehicles,
is they didn't. I could find no evidence of a shoot-out.
GENT, SCHROEDER DEATHS
The events surrounding the deaths of Peter Gent and Michael
Schroeder deserve to be scrutinized separately from the raid, because
evidence suggests both men were killed well after the initial hostilities
had subsided, and that neither man posed a threat to law enforcement.
Schroeder, 28, was killed walking home from work on a neighboring
ranch. He was shot seven times, four in the back.
Gent, 23, was climbing out of the water tower he'd been working
in that morning. BATF claims he was shot by a sniper on the ground.
The Davidians believe he was shot from a helicopter.
In any event, the families surely will file civil suits which
hopefully will allow greater discussion in those cases.
The conclusion here is, the raid was poorly planned, would never
have worked under even ideal conditions. Conditions were less than ideal
(rainy, cold, muddy, slippery, poor visibility) for this type of action.
There was a complete breakdown in communications of prisoners and
casualties. In short the people inside the complex were systematically
There are other issues that need to be resolved.
Why were these people assassinated? Did undercover agents who
remained in or penetrated the complex on February 28 systematically
terminate selected adults inside the complex? Was such a costly endeavor
in terms of both human life and dollars really carried out merely to
search for suspected illegal weapons?
In a building this size and given the number of occupants therein,
is it prudent or even sane to try an individual in court on an illegal
weapons charge? All of these people were individuals. They were free
to come and go as they pleased, many were in California or other parts
of the country at the time of the raid. Some had been in the sect only
a short while. A few were only visiting.
Is it fair that our courts seem bent upon heaping whatever
unlawful actions residents of Mount Carmel may or may not have committed
onto the back of David Koresh? What about the lawfulness of prosecuting
a group as though they are part of some individual organism like insects
or ants? Is this not guilt by association?
But the most important question of all is, "Why did representatives
of the federal government admittedly lie to the press and the American
people throughout the tragedy? What lies will be told by the government
as the impending trials commence? Will they send us a signal or message
to let the press and the public know that the lies and propaganda have
stopped and hence forth issue only the truth?"
Because of these unanswered questions, as well as others, we
the people must demand an independent investigation team be appointed,
with subpoena powers and power to grant limited immunity as prescribed
under the law. The full extent of the Waco debacle and coverup must be
exposed, or there can be no guarantee against these atrocities occuring
again in the future.
End of Article
To comment or receive copies of exhibits in support of these
conclusions call (214) 771-9612; or write:
Waco Independent Review
124 Linda Ln
Royse City, Texas 75189
For a startling videotape revealing much of what is outlined
in this article, see Waco, The Big Lie, by Linda Thompson.
300 Independence Ave. SE
Washington, D.C. 20003
Price of tape: $20
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* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Joe Gaut | "Hiding evil is the trademark of a
Nacogdoches, Texas | totalitarian government."
| --Senator Frank Church
E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank