[Home]  [Headlines]  [Latest Articles]  [Latest Comments]  [Post]  [Mail]  [Sign-in]  [Setup]  [Help]  [Register] 

Family Removes Alexa Devices After a Stranger in Another Town Heard Everything They Were Saying

Tariffs Aren't Saving Steel Towns

Atlanta Suburb Brags About Fines for Chipped Paint and Incorrectly Stacked Wood

NFL’s National Anthem Policy Exposes Free Speech Hypocrisy of Right, Left, and Trump

Locking guns won't do anything to save lives BY JOHN LOTT, JR.,

KIM JONG UN CAVES TO TRUMP!! [Kim wants a summit "at any time"]

Trump to cut foreign aid for home countries of illegal immigrants

The Great German Meltdown by Victor Davis Hanson

Pharmaceutical Murder – Mass Shootings Caused by Drugs!

The plot against Donald Trump

Haspel Is Not the Problem. The CIA Is the Problem.

This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

SWAT Team Raids WRONG House, Nearly Kills Dad, Injures 6-year-old Boy With Flash Grenade

Ron Paul: Republicans, Democrats Teaming Up for Federal Gun Confiscation Bill

NFL Players WILL Respect the Flag's Authoritah, Says Commissioner

Trump lawyer 'paid by Ukraine' to arrange White House talks

FBI Agent at Mike Flynn Interrogation Is Ready to Testify Against McCabe, Strzok and Comey!

96-Year-Old WWII Vet in a Wheelchair, Groped & Molested by TSA—For "Freedom"

This Is Why Evangelical Christians Love Israel

St. Louis Town Agrees to Stop Bankrolling Itself by Fining Its Residents into the Poorhouse

A Nation of Narcs

Surveillance Target Sam Clovis Discusses His Contacts With FBI/CIA Intelligence Agent Stefan Halper

Stormy Daniels' Lawyer Ordered To Pay $10 Million Fine In Legal Feud

New Poll Shows GOP Now Leads In 2018 Generic Ballot

Portsmouth man added "copyright" and his screen name to his child porn, feds say

Can a pope change moral truth?

The appointment of Robert Mueller violates the Appointments Clause of the Constitution... ·

Investigators Admit Victims in Texas Shooting Could’ve Been Killed by Police Fire

Innocent Man Detained, Assaulted by Cops Because He Had ‘Vegetation’ on His Window

La Jolla hardware store forced to stop giving away free popcorn

Pompeo to Iran: Get ready for "strongest sanctions in history"

Germany’s military is dysfunctional and they have no plans to fix it

ISIS Militants Leave Damascus Under Evacuation Deal As Assad Takes Full Control Of Capital

At the royal wedding, why was the heretic allowed to give the homily?

Dershowitz on Russia Probe: 'They’re All Longterm Reps Who Hated Trump!'

Here's How Much The Federal Government Paid Alleged Trump Campaign 'Spy' In 2016

Don't mess with bears

How Trump Can Dismantle Obamacare Without Congress

Worker Co-Ops Are Wildly Successful But U.S. Media Ignores them

Why Socrates Hated Democracy

Europe may be realizing America isn’t their sugar daddy or punching bag

Has China succumbed to the art of the deal?

John Bolton: We May Punish Europe If They Don’t Pull Out Of Iran Deal Too

Stop Calling the GOP the Party of Small Government

FEDS DROP BOMBSHELL: Comey & Lynch Colluded Entrap, Wiretap Trump

Bad news for green energy lovers: US oil & gas are booming

Poles Blasting EU for Gay Flag

Santa Fe High School shooting: Suspect identified as Dimitrios Pagourtzis

As The Church Slept, Satan Crept In And The Masses Embraced The Doctrines Of Demons

Geoengineering Is ‘Being Used As A Weapon; An All-Out Assault Against Life’


Status: Not Logged In; Sign In

Historical
See other Historical Articles

Title: Bitter lessons 25 years after Waco, Texas, siege
Source: The Hill
URL Source: http://thehill.com/opinion/civil-ri ... 5-years-after-waco-texas-siege
Published: Apr 16, 2018
Author: James Bovard
Post Date: 2018-04-20 19:19:07 by Deckard
Keywords: None
Views: 45
Comments: 2

Bitter lessons 25 years after Waco, Texas, siege
© Getty

Twenty-five years ago, FBI tanks smashed into the ramshackle home of the Branch Davidians outside Waco, Texas. After the FBI collapsed much of the building atop the residents, a fire erupted and 76 corpses were dug out of the rubble. Unfortunately, the American political system and media have never faced the lessons from that tragic 1993 day.

ADVERTISEMENT
Fifty-one days before the FBI final assault, scores of federal Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms agents launched an attack on the Davidians’ home spurred by allegations that they had converted semi-automatic rifles to full-automatic capacity. The ATF’s lead investigator had previously rejected an offer to peacefully search the Davidians’ home for firearms violations. Four ATF agents and six Davidians were killed in the fracas on February 28, 1993. At least one ATF agent told superiors that the ATF fired first, spurring an immediate end to the official shooting review. But the media trumpeted the ATF storyline that its agents had been ambushed, entitling the feds to be far more aggressive in the following weeks.

What lessons can today’s Americans draw from the FBI showdown on the Texas plains a quarter century ago?

Purported good intentions absolve real deadly force.

Janet Reno, the nation’s first female attorney general, approved the FBI’s assault on the Davidians. Previously, she had zealously prosecuted child abuse cases in Dade County, Fla, though many of her high-profile convictions were later overturned because of gross violations of due process. Reno approved the FBI assault after being told “babies were being beaten.” It is not known who told her about the false claims of child abuse. Reno’s sterling reputation helped the government avoid any apparent culpability for the deaths of 27 children on April 19, 1993. After Reno publicly promised to take responsibility for the outcome at Waco, the subsequent Justice Department investigation was so shoddy that even the New York Times denounced the “Waco whitewash.”

It is not an atrocity if the U.S. government does it.

Shortly before the Waco showdown, U.S. government officials signed an international Chemical Weapons Convention treaty pledging never to use nerve agents, mustard gas, and other compounds, including tear gas against enemy soldiers. But the treaty contained a loophole permitting governments to gas their own people. On April 19, 1993, the FBI pumped CS gas and methyl chloride, a potentially lethal, flammable combination, into the Davidians’ residence for six hours, disregarding explicit warnings that CS gas should not be used indoors.

Rep. Steven Schiff (R-N.M.) declared that “the deaths of dozens of men, women and children can be directly and indirectly attributable to the use of this gas in the way it was injected by the FBI.” Chemistry professor George Uhlig testified to Congress in 1995 that the FBI gas attack probably “suffocated the children early on” and may have converted their poorly ventilated bunker into an area “similar to one of the gas chambers used by the Nazis at Auschwitz."

Orwellian language will vaporize federal aggression.

As Abrams tanks driven by FBI agents continually battered the Davidian’s home, FBI loudspeakers endlessly broadcast: “This is not an assault.” Prior to the fire, the tanks had collapsed 20 percent of the building atop its residents and the FBI planned to totally demolish the home. Grenade launchers on the tanks and other armored vehicles fired almost 400 ferret rounds of CS gas through the thin wooden walls and the windows of the building. Yet Attorney General Reno later insisted: “We didn’t attack. We tried to exercise every restraint possible to avoid violence.” Demolishing someone’s home was supposedly no more bothersome than leaving a Federal Express package on their doorstep.

Truth delayed is truth defused.

The FBI speedily asserted that the Davidians ignited the fire that consumed their dwelling. The following day, the President Bill Clinton deriding suggestions that Attorney General Reno “should resign because some religious fanatics murdered themselves.” Six years later, independent investigators found pyrotechnic ferret rounds the FBI fired at the scene prior to the flames erupting. Attorney General Reno lashed out at the FBI for destroying her credibility but neither she nor FBI officials suffered any consequences from the collapse of the official narrative.

Don’t trust Congress to expose federal misconduct.

A few days after the conflagration, Reno was heartily praised at a Senate committee hearing and the media had made her a national hero. There was little or no sympathy on Capitol Hill for those who died during the final FBI assault. Rep. Jack Brooks (D-Texas), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, commented that the Davidians were “horrible people. Despicable people. Burning to death was too good for them.” If Republicans had not captured control of Congress in 1994, there would have been no substantive hearings on Waco.

Media favorites can perform rhetorical magic tricks.

When Attorney General Reno testified to the House Waco hearing on August 1, 1995, she was challenged on FBI’s use of 54-ton tanks to assail the Davidians. Reno replied that the tanks were “not military weapons... I mean, it was like a good rent-a-car." When Rep. Bill Zeliff (R-N.H.) challenged her, Reno hectored: “I think it is important, Mr. Chairman, as you deal with this issue, not to make statements like that can cause the confusion.” This is the high-toned D.C. version of the old saying: “Who are you going to believe — me or your lying eyes?” Media coverage of Reno’s showdown with congressional Republicans ignored her rent-a-tank absurdity, instead praising her toughness and demeanor.

While the events at Waco alienated millions of Americans from the government, few if any lessons were learned in Washington. Waco should have taught the disastrous consequences of unleashing government agencies from the law and the Constitution. Unfortunately, 25 years later, controversies are raging as hot as ever about the power and prerogatives of federal law enforcement.

James Bovard is a USA Today columnist and the author of 10 books, including “Lost Rights: The Destruction of American Liberty” (St. Martin’s Press, 1994).

(1 image)

Post Comment   Private Reply   Ignore Thread  


TopPage UpFull ThreadPage DownBottom/Latest

#1. To: Deckard (#0)

Unfortunately, 25 years later, controversies are raging as hot as ever about the power and prerogatives of federal law enforcement.

?

buckeroo  posted on  2018-04-20   20:17:36 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#2. To: Deckard (#0)

The main lesson to be learned from both Rapey Billy and Odumbass is that no, big fat lesbians CANNOT solve every problem by being appointed to the job.

Janet Reno? Janet Napolitano? What is it with the big fat lesbian Janet shit?

Hank Rearden  posted on  2018-04-20   20:22:16 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


TopPage UpFull ThreadPage DownBottom/Latest

[Home]  [Headlines]  [Latest Articles]  [Latest Comments]  [Post]  [Mail]  [Sign-in]  [Setup]  [Help]  [Register] 

Please report web page problems, questions and comments to webmaster@libertysflame.com