DOWNSIDE LEGACY AT TWO DEGREES OF PRESIDENT CLINTON
SECTION: REMEMBERING THE DEAD
SUBSECTION: WACO – 7/28/99 THROUGH 9/12/99
Revised 9/14/99

 

THE STORY AS IT WAS BREAKING:

The Dallas Morning News 7/28/99 Lee Hancock "...The head of the Texas Department of Public Safety said Tuesday that evidence held by the Texas Rangers since the 1993 Branch Davidian siege calls into question the federal government's claim that its agents used no incendiary devices on the day that a fire consumed the sect's compound. "There's some evidence that is at least problematic or at least questionable with regard to what happened," said James B. Francis Jr. of Dallas, chairman of the Texas Department of Public Safety. Mr. Francis declined to detail the evidence but said, "With the proper experts analyzing it, it might shed light as to whether an incendiary device was fired into the compound that day." Myron Marlin, a spokesman with the Justice Department in Washington, D.C., dismissed the allegation. "It's more nonsense. We know of no evidence to support an allegation that any incendiary device was fired into the compound on April 19, 1993," Mr. Marlin said....Mr. Francis said Tuesday that some FBI officials made statements to Texas Rangers immediately after the fire "that are contradictory" to the federal government's account of what happened. Mr. Francis told The Dallas Morning News that he only recently became aware of those statements as he began looking into complaints about the lack of public access to evidence in the Davidian investigation. Mr. Francis said he became concerned enough to contact U.S. District Judge Walter Smith of Waco, who has presided over all the cases arising from the deadly standoff. DPS recently filed a motion asking Judge Smith to take control of the evidence in the case. "I took the steps to turn it over to the court so the court could decide what to do," Mr. Francis said. "I think it's very important that whatever the evidence is and whatever it shows, that all of it come out and let the chips fall where they may." .... "I said, 'It is in effect a cover-up. It is not intended to be, but in effect it is," Mr. Francis said. "It is a complete stonewall." Mr. Francis said he doesn't think there was "some grand conspiracy to hide the evidence. I think it evolved into a situation where that was the effect of it." He said the judge asked only "how much space are we going to need," when Mr. Francis proposed turning over the evidence in the case to his federal court in Waco. After the siege, about 40 Texas Rangers were assigned to investigate and gather evidence in the case, and their investigation became the backbone of a 1994 criminal trial in which eight Branch Davidians were convicted of charges ranging from manslaughter to weapons violations..... Evidence used in the federal prosecutions was transferred to DPS headquarters in Austin for safekeeping. Although Texas Rangers had custody of the material, Justice Department officials retained authority over who could see it. They ordered DPS officials to route requests for access to Washington....Mr. Francis and others in the agency said DPS officials became increasingly frustrated as they learned that Justice Department officials routinely sent those requests back to Austin with the explanation that the evidence was in the custody of Texas officials. "It was a perfect Catch-22 to block everybody from seeing the evidence," Mr. Francis said. "There is some evidence there that the world needs to see, in my opinion. The government does not want this evidence out, and yet, that's not right." .... "

AP via Fox News Wire 7/28/99 "...Evidence stored by the Texas Rangers may contradict the U.S. government's claim that no pyrotechnic devices were fired into the Branch Davidian compound the day it burned, The Dallas Morning News reported today. Branch Davidian leader David Koresh and about 80 followers died in the 1993 inferno at the compound 10 miles east of Waco, Texas. Authorities have denied using any incendiary devices during the assault that ended when the compound was consumed by fire. Investigators concluded that sect members set the fire..."

Reuters 7/28/99 Marcus Kabel "...Dallas businessman James Francis Jr, chairman of the three-member Public Safety Commission that oversees the state police, said he wanted wider public access to the evidence collected by Texas Rangers investigating the cause of the blaze. ``Some of the evidence appears to be problematic and at least raise legitimate questions'' about how the fire started, Francis told Reuters in an telephone interview, commenting on reports in Wednesday's Dallas Morning News....."

THE WASHINGTON TIMES 7/29/99 Jerry Seper "...The civilian head of the Texas Rangers yesterday called into question FBI claims that its agents didn't ignite the windswept fire that killed 86 members of the Branch Davidian sect, including 24 children, in 1993. James B. Francis Jr., chairman of the three-member Public Safety Commission that oversees the Texas Rangers, said items found at the site were "problematic or at least questionable" in corroborating FBI claims that its agents did not fire a single shot or use any incendiary devices during the 51-day siege. "With the proper experts analyzing it, it might shed some light as to whether an incendiary device was fired into that compound that day," Mr. Francis said, adding that the evidence included shells, shell casings and other "physical things." He declined to elaborate. Seventeen of the children who perished in the fire were younger than 10 years old....The existence of the evidence was first reported by the Dallas Morning News, which said a researcher for a 1997 film documentary critical of the siege was allowed access to it last spring in preparing for a new documentary on the standoff. The researcher, Michael McNulty, told The Washington Times he found a number of questionable items in the material, including "flash-bang" devices commonly used by law enforcement to stun suspects. He said the devices -- ignited by a small pyrotechnic charge -- can start fires in enclosed spaces and were found in areas of the compound in which the fires ignited...."It's our belief that these pieces of ordnance could and probably did have an impact on the fire on April 19," he said. Justice Department spokesman Myron Marlin called the conclusion "nonsense." He said the department had no evidence "that any incendiary device was fired into the compound on April 19, 1993." ...."

THE WASHINGTON TIMES 7/29/99 Jerry Seper "...The sect members died when a fire fanned by high winds swept through the compound after the FBI had forced the chemical O-chlorobenzalmalononitrile, known as CS, into the facility. The chemical, a white crystalline powder, poured into the compound for six hours before the building erupted into an inferno and burned in minutes. The White House and the FBI later acknowledged that CS had been banned for military use at the Chemical Weapons Convention in Paris in January 1993, because of its danger, but nevertheless called its deployment "appropriate." The Justice Department report said the fire that ravaged the compound was deliberately set by sect members. The CS was blown into the compound through compressed air canisters to force sect members into a smaller area of the sprawling compound..... Attorney General Janet Reno ordered the April 1993 assault because of what she said were reports that the children were being physically and sexually abused. She later acknowledged that the FBI had no evidence of abuse, telling reporters at the time she had misunderstood what FBI officials had told her two days before the raid. The reports of child abuse were central to Clinton administration justifications for the deadly raid, which was said to have been designed to rescue the children...."

Excite 7/29/99 Reuters – "…Attorney General Janet Reno said Thursday she has found no evidence the FBI caused the 1993 fire at the Branch Davidian compound near Waco, Texas, that killed cult leader David Koresh and about 80 followers. …. Dallas businessman James Francis Jr, the chairman of the three-member Public Safety Commission that oversees the state police, has cited three types of evidence among the materials gathered by the Texas Rangers that have raised questions for him about the origin of the fire. "One is shells, shell casings, physical things. The second type of evidence is video and still photographs. The third type are interviews done there on the spot at the time," Francis has said…."

Dallas Morning News 8/4/99 Lee Hancock "…Justice Department officials filed a motion Wednesday agreeing to a state bid to hand over the evidence in the Branch Davidian case to a federal judge, but they asked the court to turn it over to the U.S. Marshal's Service for safekeeping….. "Turning it over to a U.S. District judge is one way to keep the fox from guarding the hen-house," said F.R. "Buck" Files of Tyler. The evidence has been in custody of the Texas Rangers since a 1994 trial that ended with the manslaughter and weapons convictions of eight Branch Davidians. The Rangers were brought into the case to investigate the 1993 standoff and were deputized by Judge Smith as special U.S. Marshals to participate in the ensuing federal prosecution. But the Rangers have been under Justice Department orders to route all requests for access to the evidence to Washington, where officials have then routinely sent them back to Austin. Mr. Francis said last week that "Catch-22" setup created a "complete stonewall" blocking public access to information in the case. ….. Mr. Francis said his effort to get the federal court to take the evidence was prompted in part by concerns that some of it raised questions about the FBI's account of what happened. Mr. Francis refused to elaborate but acknowledged that he recently told the agency not to allow anyone, including the FBI, access to any of the evidence. Other officials confirmed the Texas Rangers have launched an inquiry to determine what the questioned evidence was and how it was used on April 19. Texas officials have said that DPS learned about the questioned evidence from Michael McNulty, an independent researcher preparing a documentary on the standoff. ……Mr. McNulty said he has shown Congressional officials portions of his new film, including a section in which a defense expert alleged that flashes on an FBI infrared video from April 19 were federal gunfire. He said the segment included infrared video footage with near-identical flashes recorded during a 1993 U.S. Army firefight in Somalia -- flashes that the defense expert characterized as gunfire. Government lawyers have dismissed the defense expert's infrared analysis as "junk science" and FBI officials have said the flashes were caused by reflected sunlight. But in his recent ruling on the wrongful death case, Judge Smith cited the defense expert's analysis and another scientist's study dismissing the FBI's explanation as scientifically impossible. Those studies "present at least some evidence to support their (the Branch Davidians') claim" of FBI gunfire into the compound," the judge wrote…."

Washington Times 8/4/99 Paul Craig Roberts "...In July 27, the chairman of the Texas Department of Public Safety, James B. Francis Jr., told the Dallas Morning News that evidence in possession of the Texas Rangers calls into question the federal government's account of the deadly federal assault and subsequent fire that claimed the lives of scores of men, women and children in the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas, in 1993. Mr. Francis wants to turn the evidence over to federal district court Judge Walter Smith. The U.S. Department of Justice is trying to block the Texas Rangers from releasing the evidence. Mr. Francis says that the Rangers have "some evidence that the world needs to see, in my opinion. The government does not want this evidence out, and yet, that's not right." Mr. Francis added: "It is a complete stonewall."...The Texas Rangers should not trust Judge Smith with the evidence. Judge Smith presided over the trial of the Waco survivors. He has been strongly denounced by the jury foreman and jury members for misleading the jury in order to sentence the survivors. The jury foreman has repeatedly criticized Judge Smith for sentencing the survivors for offenses for which the jury did not convict. Judge Smith deceived the jury to oblige the Justice Department. By handing down long sentences that the jury did not intend, Judge Smith prevented the verdict from casting doubt on the government's explanation of what happened at Waco and prevented the survivors from being available to the media to tell their stories.....Lawyers and investigators involved in the wrongful death suits tell me that they have powerful evidence that the federal government is guilty of criminal assault, criminal negligence, and reckless endangerment...."

Washington Times 8/4/99 Paul Craig Roberts "...But some important evidence appears to have leaked from government officials sickened by the federal massacre and cover-up. There is a belief within the government itself that if the federal government gets away with its Waco cover-up, the casualty will be the rule of law. Former Attorney General Ramsey Clark is a lawyer for many of the wrongful death suits. He described to me some of the key evidence: the FLIR tape (Forward Looking Infra Red), which shows federal automatic fire into the compound on the day of the fire. Mr. Clark also has Dr. Edward F. Allard's "Thermal Imaging Report" and the "Sun Reflection Geometry Report" prepared by Maurice Cox of the National Reconnaissance Office. These reports make clear that the images on the FLIR tape are images of federal gunfire. Mr. Hardy says he has an FBI report that acknowledges federal gunshots during the fire originating from an FBI position designated as Sierra One. Mr. Hardy also has an Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms memo reporting that three ATF agents went on a friendly shooting excursion with David Koresh nine days before the initial ATF assault on the compound. ...Former Attorney General Ramsey Clark says the evidence of wrongful death is overwhelming --even without the powerful evidence in his possession. "The first civil right," Mr. Clark says, "is to be free from unlawful and excessive force by your own police. That is the difference between a free society and a police state." "At Waco a police force exceeding 700 men with armored vehicles began a systematic aggressive attack in a situation rife with flammable materials and high winds. It is indisputable that this is reckless endangerment." "How could it happen that a flimsy building full of men, women and children could be assaulted by the U.S. government in that way?"This question demands an answer..."

WorldNet Daily 8/5/99 Jon Dougherty "...The mainstream press groupies are ignoring startling new evidence about the federal government's assault on the Branch Davidian community in Waco, Texas, in 1993. In case you haven't heard, the evidence I'm talking about was first chronicled in the Dallas Morning News over a week ago. It seems as though the chairman of the Texas Department of Public Safety -- the Texas Rangers -- has evidence that solidly refutes the federal government's version of events that took place against members of the Branch Davidian religious group. The evidence includes key interdepartmental federal law enforcement memos, thermal imaging reports, and an examination of video evidence by an analyst from the National Reconnaissance Office.... Specifically, the evidence: Establishes a belief among many within the government that if the Feds get away with what they did at Waco, the rule of law will suffer the most. Supports earlier claims made by independent reporters that FLIR (Forward Looking Infrared) imagery examined by noted expert Dr. Edward F. Allard indeed shows federal agents firing automatic weapons at fleeing Davidians. Shows the FBI admitting in a report that federal automatic weapons fire during the final assault on the Davidian community originated from a position designated as "Sierra One." Shows the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms admitting in a memo that three ATF agents went on a friendly shooting trip with Davidian leader David Koresh just nine days before the initial ATF assault. Establishes that explosive canisters of a flammable nature were used repeatedly during the initial phases of the assault. There is also evidence that the initial federal judge in the case, district court Judge Walter Smith, has done everything in his power to accommodate the government's cover-up..... While all of this is going on -- the makings of a gargantuan scandal -- I have to ask where are the mainstream media crews? Where are the CNN cameras documenting every second of this ballooning scandal -- in the same manner they documented every second of the Waco showdown over six years ago? Why aren't Dan Rather and Tom Brokaw parked outside Judge Smith's courtroom, giving viewers a minute-by-minute live analysis of this enormous breaking story? Where's the "60 Minutes" crew or the "Nightline" documentary? Why are the major news web sites more interested in polling Americans about gun control and how they feel about the passing of JFK Jr. than reporting the obvious discrepancies in the federal government's version of events at Waco? It makes me sick to hear these people call themselves reporters. The major media players have been handed this story on a silver platter, but still they ignore it. Back when independent filmmakers and producers dug up all the evidence the Texas Rangers now claim to have, they were discounted as "kooks," "weirdos," "right-wing conspirators," and losers with an ax to grind against Clinton and Reno. That assessment was, of course, erroneous, but now it's beside the point. This time the vaunted Texas Rangers are making the same claims. How much more reputable can you get? ..."

The Dallas Morning News 8/10/99 Lee Hancock "...A federal judge in Waco told the federal government Monday to hand over every piece of evidence relating to the 1993 Branch Davidian standoff. In a sweeping order, U.S. District Judge Walter Smith told federal authorities to surrender to the federal clerk in Waco everything "in any way relevant to the events occurring at Mount Carmel," the Davidian compound besieged by federal authorities from Feb. 28 to April l9, 1993. "It is important for two reasons that the materials be maintained and safeguarded. First and foremost, the parties to civil litigation pending in this court have a right to seek access," Judge Smith wrote. "Second, the events that took place between Feb. 28 and April 19, 1993, and thereafter, have resulted in sometimes intense interest from the national media and members of the public." ..... The officials have said repeatedly in sworn testimony that FBI agents did not fire a single shot during the entire 51-day siege and used nothing capable of starting a fire. Government officials have noted that arson investigators ruled that the fire was set by sect members, and federal actions were exhaustively examined in weeks of congressional hearings, an independent U.S. Treasury Department review and an internal evaluation by the U.S. Justice Department and the FBI. Michael Caddell of Houston, one of the lead lawyers representing the Branch Davidians, praised the judge's order as a first step toward full disclosure of the government's actions. "I do think that for the American people to feel that justice has been done in this case, it's important that they feel there has been complete disclosure," he said. "That has not happened. There's been a complete stonewall by the government. "I don't think that people realize this lawsuit was filed five years ago and the government hasn't filed an answer yet. They have tied this up with procedural gimmickry. ... When you play games and obfuscate, people think you must have something to hide." ...."The Justice Department's going to have a fit," the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said. "This is an unfathomable amount of material." The FBI alone will have to turn over tens of thousands of documents. An agency official recently reported that more than 17,000 pages of documents had been compiled by the FBI's San Antonio office alone, where the chief agent supervised the standoff. A major portion of the evidence will come from the Texas Department of Public Safety. The state agency's lawyers precipitated the judge's action by filing a motion several weeks ago asking him to take control of the evidence it has stored since the Texas Rangers were asked to investigate the standoff. The Texas Rangers were named special deputy U.S. marshals and brought in to investigate within days after the shootout that started the standoff. Four agents from the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms died on Feb. 28 when a gunfight erupted as they tried to serve search and arrest warrants on the Branch Davidian compound....Mr. McNulty researched and helped produce a 1997 film harshly critical of government actions in Waco, and he has worked as a private investigator for the Branch Davidians' lawyers. He is completing a second film on the incident due for September release that will include footage he obtained during his visits to DPS evidence lockers. Among the evidence that Mr. McNulty has spotlighted are two 40 mm projectiles and a 40 mm shell casing found in the compound wreckage. He said explosives experts retained by his film's producer to test chemical residues from the devices recently reported preliminary findings that they were pyrotechnic. The Rangers recently opened an inquiry to determine the nature of the 40 mm munitions and other items that Mr. McNulty found mislabeled in their evidence locker...."

AP 8/10/99 "....More than 12 tons of charred evidence from the ruined Branch Davidian compound must be turned over to the federal court clerk here to allow better access to the material, a judge has ordered. U.S. District Judge Walter S. Smith Jr. said Monday the U.S. Marshals Service would store the evidence gathered by the Texas Rangers. The court clerk would become its official custodian. The Texas Department of Public Safety, of which the Rangers are a unit, had previously asked to be relieved of responsibility for the evidence..... "First and foremost, the parties to civil litigation pending in this court have a right to seek access,'' Smith said. "Second, the events that took place between Feb. 28 and April 19, 1993, and thereafter, have resulted in sometimes intense interest from the national media and members of the public.'' Last month, Smith refused to dismiss a wrongful death lawsuit filed against the government by surviving Branch Davidians and relatives of those who died at the compound. One researcher says the evidence may call into question the U.S. government's claim that it did not use incendiary devices when it moved into the compound....."

AP 8/10/99 C Bryson Hull "…A federal judge has ordered all evidence from the deadly 1993 Branch Davidian standoff turned over to his court, which will allow lawyers for the Davidians who are suing the government to review it. U.S. District Judge Walter Smith's order, released Monday, breaks a stalemate between the U.S. Justice Department and Texas Department of Public Safety. Public Safety officials had sought the ruling. They have maintained some 24,000 pounds of evidence that actually was under the control of the Justice Department, making public access difficult…..DPS Commissioner James B. Francis Jr. said the transfer of the evidence to the district clerk should occur within a few weeks…."

Chuck Harder – Interview 8/16/99 "…Following is a transcript of the 2nd hour of Chuck Harder’s For the People radio program of Monday, 8/16/99……Chuck: Hi everybody, Chuck Harder. As you may be aware, we had an investigator at Waco., and we felt that the government acted irresponsibly. We had never seen tanks, troops, and helicopters used against American Citizens before like that. A helicopter gunship, tanks, ...unbelievable! Janet Reno said she was doing it to protect the children, but the children all died, burnt to death. Now the surviving Branch Davidians are filing lawsuits. We’re going to talk with Joe Phillips who is with the law firm of Attorney Michael Cadell (?) who accuses the government of playing , certainly not fairly. What’s your side of the story, Joe? Welcome……JP: ….And , unfortunately, the only Federal Judge in Waco, Texas is Walter Smith, who presided over the criminal trial of some of the Branch Davidians. He issued rulings essentially concluding on his own that the Branch Davidians started the April 19 fire and shot first at the ATF – key issues in our civil case. We then went thru more than a year trying to get Judge Smith recused. We went thru the 5th Circuit, and we took it to the Supreme Court. WE did not get relief on that. And then, Judge Smith took a little more than a year to finally decide the defendant’s motions to dismiss our case, and he just now decided those. And he left in the case the key issues which are: Did the ATF fire first? And without acquiring proper targets, that is, indiscriminantly? Did the US start the fire on April 19th and trap the Davidians with gunfire? Did it block exits? Did it prevent fire-fighting personnel from reaching the Davidians?. …. Of course our position is, that the ATF, particularly did not acquire proper targets, that they fired from helicopters, that they fired indiscriminantly from the ground, without knowing who or what they were firing at, that at least two of the people they killed were unarmed. One was sitting eating breakfast and died with food in his mouth. On April 19th, that they started the fire using pyrotechnic munitions which they have not admitted to using, but which there is evidence that they used, in the material recovered from Mt. Carmel. That they of course blocked the Davidians in thru the obstruction of stairwells and exits. That’s been argued before. Some recent information thru an analysis of the thermal video which was taken that day, infrared video which was taken that day, is that they were directing gunfire at the Davidians in the rear of Mt. Carmel, and that therefore they were essentially fighting the Davidians if not trapping them with lethal force, so that they could not escape. And those are among the primary issues we’ll be litigating….."

Chuck Harder – Interview 8/16/99 "…Chuck: I think it’s fascinating that there’s a name that comes up in the Waco matter that was in the Ruby Ridge matter, and it’s Lon Horiuchi. Who is this guy? JP: Yes. Lon Horiuchi is the one individual defendant that Judge Smith left in the case. We’d sued several individual defendants including Janet Reno, and Richard Rogers, the head of the HRT, the so-called Hostage Rescue Team of the FBI. And Judge Smith dismissed all those individual defendants, and he left in the United States Government as a defendant, and Lon Horiuchi. Lon Horiuchi is a member of the FBI’s Hostage Rescue Team. He’s a sniper. He killed Vicky Weaver, an unarmed woman who was holding her child at the time at the Ruby Ridge standoff involving Randy Weaver and the FBI. The US settled a civil suit brought by Randy Weaver over that incident. The local district attorney of Idaho tried to bring a criminal charge against Horiuchi for homocide, but a federal judge determined he was immune from prosecution.

Dallas Morning News 8/24/99 Lee Hancock "…A former senior FBI official has said that the agency fired two pyrotechnic tear gas grenades on the last day of the 1993 Branch Davidian siege, a day on which federal authorities have long insisted they used nothing capable of starting a fire. The former official, Danny O. Coulson, said in an interview that two devices known as M651 CS tear gas grenades were fired from FBI grenade launchers hours before the compound erupted in flames April 19, 1993. He said that they were used with permission from FBI supervisors but that they played no role in starting the fire…. The statement by Mr. Coulson, founding commander of the FBI's hostage rescue team and a deputy assistant FBI director at the time of the incident near Waco, marks the first time that any government official has publicly contradicted those assertions. On Monday, a spokesman with the U.S. Justice Department again denied that any pyrotechnic devices were used. "We are aware of no evidence to support the notion that any pyrotechnic devices were used by the federal government on April 19," Justice Department spokesman Myron Marlin said. "We've said that all along."…"

Associated Press 8/24/99 Alica Ann Love "…Retreating from its past denials, the FBI is acknowledging that federal agents fired one or more incendiary tear gas canisters during the standoff with Branch Davidians led by David Koresh, a federal law enforcement official said Tuesday. The agency, however, is maintaining its stance that it did not start the fire that consumed the Branch Davidian compound with Koresh and more than 80 followers inside near Waco, Texas, on April 19, 1993. "The bottom line here continues to be that the Davidians set that fire and that law enforcement did not set that fire,'' said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity. Incendiary devices — believed to be two military tear gas canisters — were fired not at buildings in the Branch Davidian compound, but at a bunker nearby. They bounced off the bunker's concrete roof but did not enter any structures, the official said. The flammable canisters were fired early in the morning, around 6 a.m., the official added. The fire that destroyed the compound started around noon….Justice Department officials, including Attorney General Janet Reno, in the past have forcefully denied allegations that flammable devices were used by the FBI during the final standoff at Waco…. FBI bugs recorded Davidians discussing spreading fuel and planning a fire hours before the compound burned. Arson investigators also found evidence that gasoline, charcoal lighter fluid and camp stove fuel had been poured inside the compound…."

UPI 8/25/99 "…Reports that the FBI fired pyrotechnic tear gas canisters during the operation that ended the 1995 Branch Davidian compound siege in Waco prompted a Congressman to call (Wednesday) for new hearings into the controversial operation. Rep. Bob Barr, R-Ga., sent a letter to the chairman of the House Government Reform Committee and to Attorney General Janet Reno saying the reports raise questions as to whether government officials lied to Congress about what exactly happened at Waco…"

The Crier Report 8/25/99 Michael McNulty Freeper rowdee reports "…Film producer Michael McNulty, who has been the driving force behind the new revelations regarding Waco and the CS gas, was on the Crier Report with Susan Estrich. AS be.Mr. McNulty (not his exact words but awfully close): DELTA FORCE AT REAR OF DAVIDIAN COMPOUND IN FIRE FIGHT WHICH PRECIPITATED THE FIRE.


Mr. McNulty said he has obtained documentation from Delta Force itself as well as Dept of Public Safety film. And there are (I believe he said) aobut a dozen or so new facts and documentation. When the section first began, Ms. Crier was asking about the CS gas cannisters. Mr. McNulty responded and said the FBI had lied in the hearings unless Clinton's actions had nullified the charge of perjury. Susan, the Mouth, jumped right in and said that if it was believed to be the truth that no CS was used, it's not perjury. Mr. McNulty came right back and said he was saying that it was the agents who were there and knew or should have known that lied/perjured themselves in Congressional hearings and reports…."

UPI 8/25/99 "…Reports that the FBI fired pyrotechnic tear gas canisters during the operation that ended the 1995 Branch Davidian compound siege in Waco prompted a Congressman to call (Wednesday) for new hearings into the controversial operation. …"

http://search.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/WAPO/19990825/V000988-082599-idx.html 8/25/99 Alice Ann Love AP "…Taking back previous disavowals, the FBI now admits that federal agents fired one or more incendiary tear gas canisters during the 1993 standoff with Branch Davidian cult members in Texas, a federal law enforcement official says….. However, the FBI reconsidered those assertions this week after Danny Coulson, a former deputy director of the agency, told The Dallas Morning News that potentially flammable tear gas grenades were fired into an underground structure that led to tunnels opening into the compound…. "

The Cincinnati Post 8/26/99 Editorial "… But why is it that the FBI is getting around to admitting the truth only this week, six years after the initial raid, 51-day siege and final calamitous attack? Truth, it seems, has never been a priority of those responsible for the government's actions. One investigation ordered by President Clinton concluded that there had been ''deliberately misleading post-raid statements'' about the initial raid in which four federal agents were shot to death. The fact is, there was precious little cause for the federal government to intervene in the first place and surely no cause to bring in tanks for a second assault. Not only does one mistake seem to have been piled on top of another, but the responsible agencies have had a very difficult time being honest about it. While that's not an excuse for the paranoia of some fringe groups, it is a cause for grave concern among ordinary citizens. …"

The Mount Carmel Survivors' Web 8/26/99 Carol Moore "…AUGUST 26, 1999 "WACO" IS TOP STORY ON NBC AND ABC NIGHTLY NEWS!! FBI ADMITS PYROTECHNIC DEVICES USED ON APRIL 19, 1993 JANET RENO PROMISES NEW INVESTIGATION TEXAS RANGER QUESTIONS WHY SPECIAL FORCES AT SITE REPRESENTATIVE BURTON CALLS FOR NEW HEARINGS MIKE MCNULTY COMMENTS ON EVIDENCE….

On Tuesday, August 24th Justice Department spokesman Myron Marlin told reporters, "We're aware of the reports and we're trying to get to the bottom of it as quickly as we can.'' Early on Wednesday, the 25th, an anonymous official confirmed Coulson's account. Until now, the FBI had maintained it used only nonflammable "ferret rounds" to insert CS gas into the building because of fears that pyrotechnic grenades might spark a fire in the wooden structure. The anonymous official explained: "Maybe this didn't come up because it was 6 in the morning -- six hours before the compound burned, and maybe it didn't come up because they were fired away from the wooden main building which later burned.'' However, as you will read below, the pyrotechnic devices were found not only outside the tornado shelter, but inside and near the building. See: http://dallasnews.com/texas_southwest/0825tsw1teargas.htm

In addition, the chairman of the Texas Department of Public Safety (Texas Rangers) said that federal authorities also need to investigate and explain why members of the U.S. Army's secret Delta Force anti-terrorist unit were present the day the compound burned. "Everyone involved knows they were there. If there is an issue, it was what was their role at the time," said James B. Francis Jr. of Dallas. "Some of the evidence that I have reviewed and been made aware of is very problematical as to the role of Delta Force at the siege."

And House Government Reform Committee Chair Dan Burton, R-Ind. announced that his committee investigators had already begun an inquiry. "I'm deeply concerned by these inconsistencies..." This new information requires a thorough investigation of whether the Justice Department has misled the American people and the Congress about what happened at Waco." For more details see: http://www.dallasnews.com/texas_southwest/0826tsw1davidians.htm

The issue of whether the FBI used pyrotechnic devices has been a major focus of an ongoing inquiry by film maker Mike McNulty and a key allegation in the wrongful-death lawsuit against the government by surviving Davidians and families of victims. As early as January, 1994 at the trial of Branch Davidian survivors a Texas Ranger admitted that the Government's Exhibit 845 was "a spent destruction device or commonly called a "flash-bang device..." See page 837 of the trial transcripts found at: http://www.flash.net/~wyla/bdtt_toc/01a-900.htm#830

On August 26th I spoke with Mike McNulty who confirmed that two M561 flash-bangs were found outside of the tornado shelter, as the FBI claims. However, he claims that his research--which is still incomplete thanks to FBI stonewalling--suggests several more pyrotechnic devices were found inside the ruins of the building. Some of these the FBI originally claimed were either homemade "silencers" or gun parts. Several of these were found near places where the government claims fires started independently: the southwest corner, near the front door, the kitchen are and the chapel. He also stated that the Davidians found two flash-bangs left by BATF on February 28th and turned one over to the FBI through their attorney Dick DeGuerin, keeping the other as evidence in the building. (The FBI may emphasize this fact or try to claim that any other flash-bangs found were casings of ones the FBI threw at anyone who tried to leave without permission during the siege and that Davidians later sneaked them into building.) McNulty's new movie "Waco: A New Revelation"--the research for which triggered these newest revelations--will be in theaters and on sale in video form soon. For more information about the fire check out Chapter 11 of my book The Davidian Massacre "FBI Tank Attacks Led to Fire and Death": http://www.kreative.net/carolmoore/TDM-11.html

In the book I argue it is most likely the fire started accidently when the last tank entrance knocked over a lamp, and that wind quickly spread the fire through the firetrap of a building; there is infrared video evidence that an FBI tank might have shot a flash-bang into the gymnasium after the first fire started. However, this new evidence, and the FBI's new admissions makes me wonder -- and has been a wakeup call to millions of Americans…"

Fox News Online 8/26/99 Renee Schilhab "…Congressional Republicans on Thursday vowed to re-open hearings into the standoff that left cult leader David Koresh and many followers dead…. Rep. Bob Barr, R-Ga., a member of both the House Government Reform and Judiciary committees, said that the new information casts doubt on the statements of administration officials during congressional hearings into the Waco siege and could prompt prosecution of those officials….. GOP presidential candidate and Texas Gov. George W. Bush thanked Texas officials for their handling of the matter. "I want to compliment our Department of Public Safety officials in Texas for helping to lay out the facts," Bush said during a press conference in South Carolina on Thursday. "Our Texas Rangers were charged with investigating the facts. It's important for the facts to be laid bare as they have been in this case. Hopefully the FBI will respond accordingly." James Francis, chairman of Texas' Department of Public Safety, was quoted by The Dallas Morning News saying that federal officials need to explain why members of a secret Army anti-terrorism squad were present at the scene on the day of the fire. Military forces are prohibited from participating in domestic law-enforcement efforts without a presidential waiver. No presidential waiver was obtained in the Waco case….. "

AP Michael Sniffen 8/26/99 "…Attorney General Janet Reno pledged today to ``get to the bottom'' of why it took the FBI six years to admit that its agents may have fired potentially flammable tear gas canisters on the final day of their standoff with the Branch Davidian cult near Waco, Texas….. Meantime, the chairman of the Texas Department of Public Safety told The Dallas Morning News that federal officials need to explain why members of the Army's secret Delta Force anti-terrorism squad were at the scene the day the compound burned. ``Everyone involved knows they were there. If there is an issue, it was what was their role at the time,'' said James B. Francis of Dallas. ``Some of the evidence that I have reviewed and been made aware of is very problematical as to the role of Delta Force at the siege.'' The News cited a Defense Department document obtained under the Freedom of Information Act that confirms that the Special Forces unit was on the scene when the FBI hostage rescue unit used tanks to assault the compound with tear gas on April 19, 1993. The U.S. military is barred from domestic police work…… She said a meeting was to be held later today, at which time officials would discuss whether an outside investigation should be undertaken….."

Committee on Government Reform 8/26/99 "…Chairman Dan Burton today released the following statement regarding the revelation that despite previous denials by the Justice Department, pyrotechnic tear gas was used during the 1993 standoff at the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas: "Government Reform Committee investigators have been briefed by the Texas Rangers about the use of pyrotechnic (incendiary) tear gas rounds during the Waco standoff in 1993. "For six years, the Justice Department has denied the use of such devices. I am deeply concerned by these inconsistencies. "This new information requires a thorough investigation of whether the Justice Department has misled the American people, and the Congress, about what happened at Waco. I intend for the Government Reform Committee to get to the bottom of this matter." …"

CNN 8/26/99 Branch Davidian lawyer Mr. Hardy Freeper scooby321 reports "…He said with Koresh's atty that the goverment in briefing to Judge Smith, that the Goverment Provided False affidavits to the judge for a dismissial of the lawsuit. he said they were going to ask the Judge to impose santions on the Goverment. then they had a expert on flammable tear gas canisters and he said they could have had a delayed timer up to 4 hours and that the bombs would get 2000 degrees and cause huge fires. Koresh atty Dick Deguerin said that the power had been cut off weeks before the fire and there were alot of coleman gas containers were being thrown outside not what the Govt says. He also said the goverment ATF and FBI pushed the Texas rangers back on that day and tried to stop their investagtion of the Fire …"

Capitol Hill Blue 8/26/99 "…Now that the FBI has admitted it lied, the finger pointing will begin. The agency is launching an internal inquiry into why it took six years to admit that agents may have fired potentially flammable tear gas canisters on the final day of the 1993 standoff with the Branch Davidian cult near Waco, Texas….``The FBI may have used a very limited number of military-type CS gas canisters on the morning of April 19 in an attempt to penetrate the roof of an underground bunker 30 to 40 yards away from the main Branch Davidian compound,'' he said. Unlike the civilian tear gas used later, ``the military canisters may have contained a substance that is designed to disperse the gas using a pyrotechnic mixture,'' Collingwood said…… "

Dallas Morning News 8/26/99 Lee Hancock "… A Department of Defense document released under the federal Freedom of Information Act confirmed that members of a classified Army special forces unit were in the area when the FBI's hostage rescue team used tanks to assault the compound with tear gas. The document, written by one of two U.S. Army officers who met with Attorney General Janet Reno to help the FBI convince her to approve their tear gas assault, stated that three Special Forces personnel observed "the assault . . . and were cautioned not to video the operation."….Mr. Francis said Wednesday evening that Ms. Reno and FBI Director Louis Freeh need to expand their new inquiry on the FBI's use of military pyrotechnic tear gas to address "what the Delta Force did on April 19 and whether their role was advisory or operational. "I think the role of military ordnance is a significant issue, and I am very glad that they acknowledged that military ordnance were used," he said. "I hope that they also will ask what the role of Delta Force was, specifically, and with detail and with clarity, and report that to the American people." The Special Forces document, dated May 1993, states that the military personnel sent to the area who were allowed to observe the FBI's actions did not give any technical advice and were fully warned about the legal restrictions prohibiting military personnel from engaging in civilian law….."

Dallas Morning News 8/26/99 Lee Hancock "… [Coulson] He said the deployment of the special operations units in both 1987 prison riots required a formal presidential waiver of the federal posse comitatus act, which prohibits the use of military personnel in domestic incidents. Mr. Coulson, who was deputy assistant FBI director during the siege and helped supervise operations from Washington, was the FBI's tactical commander at the Atlanta prison riot…..Officials said Justice Department lawyers delayed the statement for several days because of concerns about how such an admission might affect a wrongful-death suit filed against the government by surviving Branch Davidians, officials in Washington said. The FBI's statement also came only days after Justice Department officials flatly denied statements made by Mr. Coulson to The News that FBI agents fired two pyrotechnic tear-gas grenades on April 19. 1993, the day that the Branch Davidian compound burned with more than 80 sect members inside…..Committee investigators received a lengthy briefing in Austin on Tuesday from the Texas Rangers, who began an investigation to try to identify the nature of a number of projectiles collected from the compound ruins after the standoff. The Rangers were brought in to investigate when the Branch Davidian incident began in 1993, and they have been custodians of the key physical evidence collected by state and federal investigators after the compound burned. On Wednesday, officials in Texas acknowledged that Mr. Burton's investigators have asked the Rangers to submit a formal report to Congress on their findings….."

Dallas Morning News 8/26/99 Lee Hancock "… Earlier this month, DPS officials became so concerned about what their evidence vaults might hold that they asked federal Judge Walter Smith of Waco to take control of all the evidence in the case to ensure its safekeeping and proper evaluation. Judge Smith then issued an unprecedented order Aug. 8 instructing every agency of the U.S. government to turn over every document, photograph and piece of physical evidence in any way related to the incident. Officials in Texas said the Rangers' investigation then confirmed that a shell casing in DPS custody had come from an M651 CS pyrotechnic grenade and the device had been fired by the FBI on April 19. Officials said the Rangers' inquiry should be completed within the next few weeks…..One Justice Department official acknowledged that the matter had prompted a significant internal dispute. "It's really a big deal. Everybody's worried and upset," the official said on condition of anonymity. "There is a lot of concern about how this might affect the civil lawsuit."…."When Mr. Freeh heard about this, he ordered a top-to-bottom review," a bureau official said in an interview. "We already have three dozen inspectors engaged in this thing. He intends to make a full reporting to congress and to the American public."…"

Judicial Watch 8/26/99 Joe Giganti "…Responding today to the Reno Justice Department's belated admission that it used pyrotechnic devices at Waco, Judicial Watch called today on Texas Governor George W. Bush to institute a state criminal investigation against Janet Reno and others for the wrongful deaths of those who died in the Waco inferno in 1993. In addition, Judicial Watch is filing a FOIA lawsuit today against Reno's Justice Department over its continued refusal to respond to a request for documents concerning Waco. Judicial Watch also demanded today a federal criminal investigation by a special counsel into the evidence that Janet Reno and others lied to Congress about the use of the pyrotechnic devices and other matters related to Waco, such as any role the U.S. Army's Delta Force played in the holocaust. "For years, Jane Reno has escaped serious scrutiny for her decisions that lead to the deaths of over 80 civilians, many of whom were women and children. Now it looks as if she and others in the Clinton Administration lied about material facts about Waco to Congress," stated Judicial Watch Chairman Larry Klayman. "Justice demands that state and federal criminal investigations be commenced immediately." …"

Ft.Worth Star-Telegram* HEADLINES IN TEXAS* 8/26/99 Gabrielle Crist "…Robert Charles, who as chief counsel for a House Government Reform and Oversight subcommittee wrote the final report on the 1995 Davidian hearings, said the new information would have changed how Congress investigated the incident. "It's just a shock to hear from one of the key players that this fact--which was obviously material to what we were investigating--was not volunteered, or was deliberately withheld," Charles told THE WASHINGTON POST. On Capitol Hill, Republicans promised new congressional inquiries. "If federal officials have been lying about these elements of the siege, their testimony on other matters should also be examined," said Rep BOB BARR, R-Ga., who called for hearings by the House Government Reform Committee…."

FBI Statement "…In response to recent inquiries about events in Waco, Texas, the FBI conducted a further search of our files and has come across information that suggests pyrotechnic devices may have been used in the early morning of April 19, 1993, in an attempt to penetrate the roof of an underground bunker away from the main Branch Davidian compound. Unlike civilian CS gas that was used by the FBI in far greater quantities that day, the military CS gas canisters may have contained a substance that is designed to disperse the gas using a pyrotechnic mixture. We continue to believe that law enforcement did not cause the fire. Nonetheless, Attorney General Reno and FBI Director Louis Freeh have ordered a full review of the facts and circustances surrounding the use of the military CS gas canisters on that day. Although some questions about the use of the military CS gas rounds remain unanswered at this time, all available indications are that those rounds were not directed at the main wooden compound, they did not land near the wooden compound, and they were discharged several hours before the fire started…."

http://www.capitolhillblue.com/Aug1999/082699/fbi082699.htm 8/26/99 "...``We continue to believe that law enforcement did not start the fire,'' Collingwood said. ``Freeh is deeply concerned that prior congressional testimony and public statements (about the use of flammable devices) may prove to be inaccurate, a possibility we sincerely would regret.'' Although questions remain, Collingwood said, ``all available indications are that those rounds were not directed at the main, wooden compound. The rounds did not land near the wooden compound, and they were discharged several hours before the fire started.'' ….Collingwood said answers recently prepared by the FBI's Hostage Rescue Team to questions from lawyers for Waco families and survivors suing the government ``suggest pyrotechnic devices may have been used in the early morning of April 19, 1993.'' ``The FBI may have used a very limited number of military-type CS gas canisters on the morning of April 19 in an attempt to penetrate the roof of an underground bunker 30 to 40 yards away from the main Branch Davidian compound,'' he said. Unlike the civilian tear gas used later, ``the military canisters may have contained a substance that is designed to disperse the gas using a pyrotechnic mixture,'' Collingwood said. ….Earlier this week, former assistant deputy FBI director Danny Coulson acknowledged for the first time to The Dallas Morning News that the two canisters were fired. Since then, several drafts of the statement read Wednesday by Collingwood were reviewed inside the FBI and by Justice Department officials, who privately expressed anger that the FBI had allowed Reno and other officials to issue categorical public denials for years. Some officials said the incident would harm the credibility of federal law enforcement…. "

Frontline (PBS), Waco The Inside Story 8/26/99 Freeper KingNo155 "…Frontline (PBS), Waco The Inside Story ….CS, which stands for 0-chlorobenzalmalononitrile, is actually a white solid powder usually mixed with a dispersal agent, like methylene chloride, which carries the particles through the air. CS is more stable, more potent and less toxic than the more commonly used CN agent. ….Physical effects of this tear gas are felt almost immediately. They are: severe burning in the eyes, involuntary closing of the eyes, copious tearing, extreme burning in the nose, tendency to breathe through the mouth, extreme burning in the throat, coughing, consciousness of pain, holding of breath, breathing and heart rate slows down, blood pressure rises, circulation on the periphery of the body shuts down. In some cases there can be mucus secretion, nausea and vomiting, also burning sensations on the body in places touched by the hands. Recovery quickly follows after an affected person is immersed in fresh air. CS gas is not known to have caused any deaths or permanent injuries, however its use has been banned in some American military operations…..Police training manuals warn that CS should be used out of doors, to disperse crowds, and CN used indoors, to force people outside. "Police and Security News" states: "In a confined space, CS can readily induce panic behavior if the adversary is unable to escape the contaminated area." According to a handbook called the "Police Chemical Agents Manual," during exposure to CS a person is "incapable of effective concerted action." Toxicologists describe the effects of CS as incapacitating, and certainly not the agent of choice if a fire is anticipated. …."

NY TIMES 8/26/99 David Stout "…The Federal Bureau of Investigation backed away from six years of unqualified denials to Congress and the public on Wednesday, conceded that it used "pyrotechnic" tear-gas canisters on the final day of the 1993 standoff with the Branch Davidian cult near Waco, Tex., and ordered a full inquiry. The bureau said the devices were "pyrotechnic" only in a limited sense and bounced harmlessly off a concrete structure six hours before the compound's main building, built of wood, erupted in flames. The bodies of 80 people, including 25 children, were found after the fire. The revelation, after repeated staunch denials, that Federal agents used pyrotechnic devices of any sort was deemed so serious that Attorney General Janet Reno and Director Louis J. Freeh of the F.B.I. tonight ordered an exhaustive inquiry into the events of April 19, 1993….. "We continue to believe that law enforcement did not start the fire," Collingwood said. But there were clear signs this evening that the backtracking had raised questions of credibility for the F.B.I. and the Justice Department. "This new information requires a thorough investigation of whether the Justice Department has misled the American people, and the Congress, about what happened at Waco," Representative Dan Burton, an Indiana Republican who heads the Committee on Government Reform, said tonight in a statement. "I intend for the Government Reform Committee to get to the bottom of this matter." …. The Dallas Morning News that pyrotechnic grenades had been used. Texas law enforcement officials backed up Coulson's recollections, saying a continuing investigation by the Texas Rangers had turned up evidence of the use of the M-651's. And a review of internal F.B.I. documents supported the Texas findings, bureau spokesmen said today….The House Government Reform Committee later criticized the Treasury Department and the A.T.F. in particular, concluding that the bureau had shown gross incompetence. It also criticized Ms. Reno and the F.B.I., saying they should have known that a "violent and perhaps suicidal reaction" might be touched off…."

The Dallas Morning News 8/26/99 Lee Hancock "…A congressional committee chairman vowed a "thorough investigation" Wednesday as the FBI began its own inquiry and formally conceded that its agents "may have fired" pyrotechnic devices on the last day of the 1993 Branch Davidian siege. In Texas, the chairman of the Department of Public Safety said that federal authorities also need to investigate and fully explain why members of the U.S. Army's secret Delta Force anti-terrorist unit were present on the day the compound burned…."

Reagan.com 8/26/99 Weldon Clark "… First, there have been lawsuits filed by families of those killed at Waco and by some of the survivors. The suits were transferred to Judge Smith, the same judge who sentenced some of the Davidians to long prison terms, and is generally thought of as a very pro-government, very anti-Davidian judge. The government of course moved to dismiss the cases. To the surprise of many, Judge Smith refused, leaving open such claims as the Davidians' assertion that the government shot at people leaving the burning building. This, Smith stated, had at least some evidence to support it, and if proven would "shock the conscience of the court." Judge Smith must have been startled at the next development. Without warning, the Texas Department of Public Safety appeared in his court. TDPS announced that the Texas Rangers (which are part of TDPS) had two large rooms full of Waco evidence that had never seen the light of day. It explained that members of the public--documentary producer Michael McNulty and attorney David Hardy--had been asking for copies, but that when it offered to make them, federal agencies forbade it. Yet when McNulty and Hardy asked the federal agencies for copies, the same agencies claimed that they couldn't give them because only the Rangers had control over the evidence. TDPS added that it did not want to be responsible for withholding the evidence, hinted that it did not trust the federal agencies to have it, and offered to file the entire mass (estimated at twelve tons of material) in court! Things became more lively when TDPS explained just what was in the evidence. TDPS commissioner Jim Francis said that it contained government fired projectiles, which appeared to be pyrotechnic (that is, fire producing). It appears to this author that may prove that FBI started the fire that killed 74 people, including two dozen children….The evidence was so sensitive, Francis explained, that he had instructed the Rangers to keep FBI out of the evidence locker until it could be secured with the court, and he had ordered the Rangers to commence their own investigation. The revelation of hidden evidence must have shocked Judge Smith, hitherto seen as very pro-government. He issued an order accepting the Ranger's evidence. Then he issued a second order, which is utterly unprecedented. He ordered all federal agencies to turn over to the court all evidence "in any way relevant to the events at Mt. Carmel [the Davidian building]." No one had even thought to ask for such an order; in a civil case, judges just don't order all the evidence turned in, whether it has been subpoenaed or not. An anonymous law enforcement authority was quoted in the Dallas Morning News as predicting that "The Justice Department is going to have a fit!" That's a safe prediction. Attorney Hardy's Freedom of Information Act suit drove ATF to admit that it had three and maybe four video cameras filming what happened at the Davidians' front door, and likely showing exactly what had happened when the first shots were fired--but ATF claimed all copies had vanished. So had an infrared tape of the building, which would conclusively show if and when the Davidians fired. We may now know exactly where those tapes are sitting, and exactly why they've had to be hidden for six years…."

Reagan.com 8/26/99 Weldon Clark "… Now for the things we can't talk about--or, at least, things were we can only reveal part of the story. Michael McNulty, producer of the documentary "Waco: The Rules of Engagement," is producing a second documentary. If the first one was stunning--it won an Academy Award nomination--the second one makes it look mild. With solid evidence, most of it from the government's own files, he shows that the FBI may be guilty of lying, perjury, and homicide. He found the 40 mm Pyrotechnic shells, and tied them to the fire. Retired FBI and government sources agreed to talk. The picture that emerges is even grimmer than we might have thought. Some Davidians had claimed that FBI fired into the building and shot at people who tried to escape. McNulty has uncovered STRONG proof that the statements are true. FBI infrared tapes, far better than those shown in his first documentary, show not only the FBI gunshots but also the FBI shooters. A law enforcement videotape shows the muzzle flashes. Internal FBI reports confirm that gunfire was heard from one of their sniper positions. This is only a tiny part of the new evidence McNulty has uncovered, but it should give you a guess as to what the rest is like. Here are just some of the indictments, each carefully documented, that McNulty's new documentary will level. Yes, there is a reason why 74 people burned rather than escape the burning building. Those who came out the back way--away from the media cameras--had been shot as they tried to get out. Yes, the "brave federal agents" got trigger- happy. Yes, a federal agency levied war against American civilians--including two dozen children. McNulty showed his documentary to Congressional staffs recently, and the effect was immediate. Congressmen and Staffers were seen leaving in tears, others in angry determination. Now there is talk of new congressional hearings- done the right way, for once. …."

Washington Post 8/26/99 Allan Favish notes Buried near the bottom of the Washington Post story…, is the following: "…"Another never-before-seen piece of evidence on the siege is a videotape shot by the Texas Department of Public Safety that some experts say appears to show machine gun fire directed at the compound's occupants from an FBI helicopter the morning of April 19. Federal officials have said that no federal agents ever fired on the Davidians. The video was obtained by a Colorado filmmaker, Michael McNulty, who helped produce the documentary "Waco: The Rules of Engagement." "Earlier this month, McNulty showed portions of his upcoming film, "Waco: A New Revelation," to some members of Congress. After seeing the new footage, Rep. Robert L. Barr Jr. (R-Ga.) called on Burton to reopen the Waco hearings." …"

Drudge 8/26/99 "…As the six and a half year old Waco controversy heats up again, the ATLANTA JOURNAL CONSTITUTION is reporting in Friday editions that U.S. military assistance at the April 1993 Waco siege was jusified, according to a General Accounting Office report released Thursday. The GAO, which acts as Congress' investigative arm, declares that the military's million dollar involvement -- which included the use of Army, Air Force, Texas and Alabama National personnel and equipment -- was lawful due to early reports from local law enforcement that the Davidians were running a methamphetamine laboratory from their Mt. Carmel compound. The JOURNAL CONSTITUTION's Julia Malone quotes GAO's Carol Schuster, who was in charge of the report: "The drug connection legitimizes providing military assistance without reimbursement." …..The report concludes that $982,400 of military dollars were spent on helicopters, tanks, a grenade launcher, as well as "Army Special Operations observers". No evidence of drug manufacturing was ever found at the Davidian compound…."

UPI 8/26/99 "…The woman who headed the federal jury that convicted eight Branch Davidian members in connection with the 1993 siege near Waco, Texas, says they should get new trials because of new FBI admissions. Sarah Bain headed a federal court jury that convicted the Davidians on charges related to the Feb. 28, 1993 shootout with Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agents that began the 51-day siege. Four ATF agents died when they attempted to serve a warrant on Davidian leader David Koresh. In an interview with WOAI radio in San Antonio today, Bain said the admission by the FBI that agents fired flammable tear gas grenades near the compound hours before the fire that ended the siege is grounds to ask for new trials. Koresh and 80 of his followers died during the fire. Bain said: "The question never was settled in our minds during the trial as to exactly who started that fire. Most of us had some doubts that the Branch Davidians were responsible for mass suicide." …..Bain said: "All the evidence that was gathered that caused them to be put in prison was gathered after the fire. Since it now appears that some of the evidence may have been misidentified and mislabeled, and possibly the origin of that fire is now in question, it seems that they might rightly ask for a new trial." …."

Time Magazine 8/26/99 Freeper fideist remembers "…Who remembers this fact about Waco? In their coverage of the incident TIME Magazine published a full-color photo -- After the final raid, and the Branch Davidian compound lay in ashes; and while the bodies of approximately forty adults and twenty children laid there still smoldering. Government agents went to the compound’s flagpole and lowered the Davidian flag, and then raised the flag of the BATF, in the customary sign of "victory." The BATF and FBI considered the final raid, and the death of all those citizens, a "victory." …"

AP 8/26/99 Michael Sniffen "…Attorney General Janet Reno pledged today to "get to the bottom'' of why it took the FBI six years to admit that its agents may have fired potentially flammable tear gas canisters on the final day of their standoff with the Branch Davidian cult near Waco, Texas. A senior Pentagon official, meanwhile, said the military's advice was sought on how to end the standoff and that three military observers were on the scene on the day of the raid. But the military had "no operational involvement,'' said the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity. Reno told reporters: "I have no reason at this point to believe the FBI is responsible for the deaths of those people.'' But she told her weekly news conference she was "very, very frustrated'' that six years after categorical denials by the FBI there were news reports about the possible use of flammable devices. "It is absolutely critical that we do everything humanly possible to learn all the facts as accurately as possible and make them available to the Congress and public,'' said Reno, who, along with FBI Director Louis Freeh, has ordered a fresh investigation of what transpired on April 19, 1993, at the Branch Davidian compound. Earlier, Reno and Freeh ordered 40 FBI agents led by an FBI inspector to re-interview everyone who was at the Waco scene. FBI spokesman John Collingwood said Wednesday night that the agents are to report "within weeks'' on all aspects of the use of military-type tear gas and why it took so long to be admitted publicly. Reno said she had gone over in her mind many times the events of that fiery day and had many times asked herself how the government might have handled it differently…."

The Dallas Morning News 8/27/99 Lee Hancock "…A former CIA officer said Thursday that he learned from Delta Force commandos that members of the secret Army unit were "present, up front and close" in helping the FBI in the final tear-gas assault on the Branch Davidian compound. The former officer, Gene Cullen, told The Dallas Morning News that he heard the detailed accounts of the military's active involvement from "three or four" anti-terrorist Delta commandos as he worked with them on an overseas assignment in 1993. "Whether it's the macho-bravo-type talk of guys in the field, I don't know," he said, declining to identify the individuals involved. "I have no reason to suspect that they lied. And it didn't just come from one of them. There were three or four guys that confirmed that, who were from Delta."…"

NY Times 8/27/99 "…. Henry S. Ruth Jr., the former Watergate prosecutor who was another outside expert involved in the Treasury review, said the latest damage to the Justice Department's credibility was not surprising in view of how it handled the Waco affair. "People at the time thought the Justice Department evaluation was a whitewash in the sense that it didn't tell the full facts about what was known," Ruth said. "It clearly was written to vindicate the Attorney General, for some reason, who speaks well for herself." "I don't think this particular new information by itself bears on the circumstances of the fire," he said. "But what it clearly shows is that the internal investigators didn't use the proper types of investigatory techniques necessary to explore the facts. That is completely unsurprising because the F.B.I. over time has never had the institutional ability to investigate itself."…. "Are 40 F.B.I. agents doing interviews really going to restore the Attorney General's credibility?" Ruth said. "If they don't reopen the whole thing now and actually use outside investigators, this will be like the Kennedy assassination for the next 50 years. I live in the West and the Midwest and this issue is keeping the militia groups alive." Jeffrey Jamar, the F.B.I. special agent in charge at the siege, said on Thursday, "The important thing that people have to understand is that we weren't trying to hide anything." He said he did not remember being asked about the incendiary devices and he thought probably no one considered them important because they were fired hours before the fire. There was only one dissent from the 1993 Justice review, by Dr. Alan Stone, a professor at Harvard law and medical schools who was one of the experts retained by the Justice Department. He concluded that the F.B.I. had helped drive cult members to mass suicide and then misled officials in the review that followed….. But the Justice review was seen by many as a whitewash. Although President Clinton had promised a "thorough and independent examination of the affair," the main author of the Justice Department, Edward S. G. Dennis Jr., found no criticism of any Justice Department or F.B.I. officials was appropriate. "I find there is no place in the evaluation for blame and no place for fault," he said at the time. He said "mistakes were made" but did not identify who may have made them. The report concluded that the Davidians had set the fire, based on three things: an arson report analyzing the locations where the blaze began; infrared pictures taken from an airplane when the fire started that showed intense spots of heat erupting in different spots in the compound at almost the same time, and the testimony of some of the Davidians who survived. Dennis said in an interview on Thursday that the report "was not intended to be a comprehensive, all-encompassing report." Dennis said his report "did not attempt to answer every question that could be raised about" Waco, but instead focused on the questions of how the F.B.I. negotiated with the Davidians, how the fire was caused, and how the Attorney General made her decisions. He concluded that Ms. Reno was adequately briefed by the F.B.I. about the issues she faced in ordering the tear-gas assault…."

Dallas Morning News 8/27/99 Lee Hancock "… The former [CIA] officer, Gene Cullen, told The Dallas Morning News that he heard the detailed accounts of the military's active involvement from "three or four" anti-terrorist Delta commandos as he worked with them on an overseas assignment in 1993. "Whether it's the macho-bravo-type talk of guys in the field, I don't know," he said, declining to identify the individuals involved. "I have no reason to suspect that they lied. And it didn't just come from one of them. There were three or four guys that confirmed that, who were from Delta." The chairman of the Texas Department of Public Safety on Thursday told The News that evidence in the hands of Texas law enforcement personnel may support the account given to Mr. Cullen. "I'm advised there is some evidence that may corroborate" the allegation that Delta Force participated in the assault, said James B. Francis Jr., the DPS official. A Pentagon spokesman who spoke on condition of anonymity denied Thursday that any U.S. military units were involved in the assault, "as far as I know." Use of active military personnel against civilians without a specific presidential decree is a violation of federal law…."

Dallas Morning News 8/27/99 Lee Hancock "… A once-classified memo written to the Army Special Forces command, which includes Delta Force, indicated that three of its personnel watched the final tragedy unfold. The May 1993 memo stated that the observers did not participate and were warned not to videotape anything that happened. Mr. Francis said evidence in the hands of Texas law enforcement suggests that more than three Delta Force personnel were at the compound on April 19 and involved in the assault. "I have been advised that there are some police officers who have developed some evidence that needs looking into with regard to what the role of Delta Force was at the Branch Davidian compound," he said, declining to elaborate. "I think it's a subject that the FBI director and the attorney general need to look into," Mr. Francis said. "The $64 question is whether they were advisory or operational, and I think some of the evidence is problematical" ….Mr. Cullen, who said he worked as a CIA case officer from the 1980s to 1995, said Special Forces experts watched events near Waco with interest immediately after four agents from the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms died trying to serve search warrants on the Branch Davidian compound. At the time, he said, he was a supervisor in the CIA's special operations group and had frequent contact with members of Delta Force, the U.S. Navy Seals and civilian tactical experts such as the FBI's hostage rescue team. ….While he was deployed overseas on an assignment, Mr. Cullen said, Delta operators told him that the unit "had 10 operators down there, that they were involved in the advanced forward stages of [the FBI's April 19] operations." "When they explained to me the depth to which they were involved down in Waco, I was quite surprised. They said basically they were out there in the vehicles, the Bradley [fighting vehicles], the CEV [tanks]," he said. "They were active." Documents released under the Federal Freedom of Information Act to a Tuscon, Ariz., lawyer indicate that the military's Special Forces Operations Command at MacDill Air Force Base in Florida was heavily involved in helping the FBI in Waco. Military personnel provided technical and equipment support, the defense records indicate. The command oversees Delta Force, U.S. Navy Seals, and other units…."

http://www.dallasnews.com/texas_southwest/0827tsw1reno.htm 8/27/99 G Robert Hillman "…Attorney General Janet Reno, declaring her credibility at stake, said Thursday that the FBI had assured her that no pyrotechnic devices would be used in its final assault on the Branch Davidian compound in 1993. "I did not want those used. I asked for and received assurances that they were not incendiary," she said, recalling her discussions the week before the final assault near Waco in which more than 80 Branch Davidians died when their compound burned to the ground….In the week before the final assault on April 19, 1993, the attorney general said she had "continuing discussions" about the kind of tear gas that would be used by the FBI - "whether it was incendiary and whether the devices were."….She said she had been "concerned about the possibility of fire started by such devices" and was assured that no pyrotechnics would be used…..Ms. Reno said she would be conferring by telephone with FBI Director Louis Freeh, who is on vacation, to determine exactly how the new federal review will be carried out. One option under consideration is the hiring of an outside investigator, perhaps a team of investigators….Nevertheless, the attorney general was described by a Justice Department official as angry and shaken by the new revelations. "There is such disbelief that this is out there," said the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity. The official said some of the new information may have been available to officials in the FBI's legal office as long as three years ago. But the official could provide few other details….."

New York Times 8/27/99 Editorial "…These inquiries must be thorough and speedy. Some Americans are still eager to believe that the F.B.I. deliberately murdered the cultists. Unanswered questions can only reinforce these beliefs. From the beginning, officials have insisted that the F.B.I. used conventional, non-combustible tear gas to try to end the siege of the cult's compound. Ten days after the incident, Ms. Reno told the House Judiciary Committee that "I wanted and received assurances that the gas and its means of use were not pyrotechnic." As recently as July 29, when asked about a continuing investigation into the fire by the Texas Rangers, she reasserted her belief that no incendiary devices had been used. ….The F.B.I.'s about-face was apparently prompted by documents produced in various civil lawsuits and by an interview earlier this week in The Dallas Morning News with Danny Coulson, a former F.B.I. agent in Texas. Mr. Coulson said that two pyrotechnic grenades had been used. Texas law enforcement officials backed up his recollections, asserting that the Texas Rangers' investigation had also found evidence that incendiary devices had been deployed. After a fast review of its own internal documents, the F.B.I. recanted six years' worth of denials -- insisting, however, that the canisters had been fired not at the wooden building where the cult members were gathered, but at a nearby concrete bunker, where they caused no damage. But even if that is true, questions remain. If Ms. Reno knew that such devices had been used, why did she not tell Congress? If she did not know, why did the F.B.I. withhold the evidence from her? The fact that the devices may have played no role in the fire is beside the point. The point is that the F.B.I. and the Justice Department now look at best sloppy and at worst untruthful. That in turn gladdens the hearts of conspiracy theorists everywhere. …"

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/bluesky_dougherty_com/19990827_xcjod_waco_brwro.shtml 8/27/99 Jon Dougherty "…When the first bits of contradictory evidence between the government's "official line" regarding the Waco debacle and those gifted few who were actually investigating the evidence first came out, I was convinced the government had lied to us. I knew -- because I knew Clinton already -- that those poor souls in the Branch Davidian community had never bothered anyone (especially the federal government) and were killed for no good reason. So did millions of other Americans who were never fooled by the propaganda machines we routinely call the mainstream media and the White House Press Office. Consequently, when the Dallas Morning News first broke the story that Texas Department of Public Safety official James B. Francis said the Texas Rangers had evidence in their possession that nullified parts of the FBI's "official line" regarding the Waco tragedy, I waited eagerly for more. I didn't have to wait long. This past week came an avalanche of new information that ought to -- at some point -- be enough to land some people in prison for the rest of their miserable lives. ….We have also learned that indeed members of the Army's elite Delta Force were not only present during the assault -- as earlier "right-wing wacko" reporters revealed -- but were instrumental in convincing Attorney General Janet Reno to approve the assault in the first place….Furthermore, the paper reported, "A Department of Defense document released under the federal Freedom of Information Act confirmed that members of a classified Army Special Forces unit were in the area when the FBI's hostage rescue team used tanks to assault the compound with tear gas." Game, set, and match. Not only did Francis and the DOD confirm the presence of the Delta Force, Francis -- citing evidence he has "reviewed and been made aware of" -- subsequently implied that Delta Force troops may actually have taken part in the assault, as has been alleged by other investigative "wackos" for years. Before you dismiss that out of hand as "kooky," "illogical," or "extremist," remember that Francis was the one who blew the whistle about this new evidence in the first place. And remember too that so far, he's batting 1000. The FBI has admitted he was right by admitting what he said a few weeks ago -- that the agency did use incendiary devices during the raid -- was correct, even though they're trying to put their own spin on it. …Thank God the Texas Rangers got in there before the government so hastily bulldozed all of the evidence. There's no telling what we're going to find out next. But I'll bet if there's any new information coming, us "right-wing extremists" will be proven correct -- again…."

New York Post 8/27/99 Brian Blomquist "…Reno was criticized shortly after the Waco disaster for claiming one reason she OK'd the government siege was because children in the compound were being abused. A subsequent Justice Department review found zero evidence of child abuse….. "No one is going to be satisfied with an internal Justice Department investigation," said House Government Reform Committee Chairman Dan Burton (R-Ind.). "They have no credibility at this point." ….The government is sticking to its denial about reports that an elite Army anti-terrorism squad, the Delta Force, might have had a role in the siege. "We did participate in the training of some ATF [Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms] agents at Fort Bragg, and a small number of observers were present at Waco. However, no military members were in any way involved in the take-down of the Branch Davidian complex," said George Grimes, spokesman for the U.S. Special Operations Command in Tampa, Fla. Grimes said "three or four" members of a military special-forces team were on hand for the siege. Asked if they were armed, he said, "I doubt it." …."

The Washinton Times 8/27/99 Rowan Scarborough "…The three Delta Force commandoes at the Branch Davidian compound in April 1993 were part of an elite unit the military secretly founded in 1977 to combat world terrorism. While their use as on-scene observers was legal, a military expert is faulting the Clinton administration for putting the soldiers in a domestic law enforcement setting where innocent people died in a horrible blaze. Said Al Santoli, a House national security aide, "Delta Force is our most sophisticated task force against terrorists and to think that Delta would be used is an abuse of their power and an abuse of their mandate. What happened in Waco was strictly a law enforcement matter."….A Pentagon spokesman said Thursday the three special forces soldiers were at Waco strictly as observers in hopes of learning something new on hostage rescue…..The issue of Delta Force aiding the FBI at Waco is not new. Attorney General Janet Reno testified before congressional committees that she sought the unit's advice before approving the April 1993 assault. A joint congressional committee investigated the commandoes' role in both open and closed hearings. But their presence does take on new importance this week with the FBI's admission that it did, despite previous denials, use incendiary devices on the same day the compound erupted in flames. A 1878 law called Posse Comitatus forbids the military from enforcing civilian laws…."

THE WASHINGTON TIMES 8/27/99 Jerry Seper "…"They could not offer an opinion. They could not critique. They could not participate. They were there strictly to observe," said the official. "The special-operations community has spent a terrific amount of time up to the present building up a hostage-rescue capability. . . . So we send observers anywhere we can." The official said the military's presence did not violate the 1878 Posse Comitatus Act that prohibits military involvement in domestic law enforcement. "Our general counsel has told me in no uncertain terms there was no problem with Posse Comitatus in any way. There is nothing more legally examined than Department of Defense's involvement in this sort of thing," the official said. But James B. Francis Jr., chairman of the Texas Department of Public Safety, which oversees the Texas Rangers, told the Dallas Morning News he believes the use of Delta Force members at the Waco site needs a better explanation. "Everyone involved knows they were there. If there is an issue, it was what was their role at the time," said Mr. Francis, who first publicly questioned whether the FBI had used incendiary devises at the site. "Some of the evidence that I have reviewed and been made aware of is very problematical as to the role of Delta Force at the siege." ….In July 1995, a House committee held a secret hearing with two former Delta Force commanders about the unit's participation in the Waco siege. The commanders said they met with Miss Reno in April 1993 on the FBI's plan to use tear gas to force Davidian leader David Koresh and his followers from the fortified compound. That meeting, four days before the fire, centered on information from Delta Force on how the military would accomplish a similar mission, but the commanders were not asked to comment directly on the FBI plan…. Rep. Henry J. Hyde, Illinois Republican and chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, has ordered his staff to retrieve the Waco file and review testimony on the use of tear gas. Sen. Orrin G. Hatch, Utah Republican and chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said it appeared the public and the Congress had been "misled by the Department of Justice." He said an inquiry was in order to determine if FBI misstatements were part of a "cover-up or a negligent oversight." …."

Original Sources (www.originalsources.com) 8/27/99 Mary Mostert "…Washington Post Staff Writer Edward Walsh describes "A visibly angry Attorney General Janet Reno…'Prior to April 19th, 1993, I received assurances that the gas and its means of use were not pyrotechnic,' Reno said. 'Since then, I have consistently been told that no pyrotechnic devices were used. I will continue to pursue this matter to get to the truth. That is why Director Freeh and I have ordered a full review of all the facts concerning this matter. I intend the results of the review to be made public and I will not stop till I get to the bottom of this.'" And we are supposed to BELIEVE this nonsense? This is an act. The fact of the matter, there never WAS a real investigation. Exactly four years ago, in my capacity as editor of the Reagan Monitor, I put together an entire newsletter which was titled: "The Waco Cover-up - Monkeys in the Works of Justice." The September 1995 issue lead article was entitled "WHY? - There are still too many unanswered questions." In the interest of helping Congress and the Justice Department save time they might like to pursue the following questions which were never addressed in 100 hours of sworn testimony at Congressional Hearings on the ATF raid on the Branch Davidian church and home (not "compound") in Waco, Texas.:…

1. Why, at a time when there is such lax enforcement of the law, were a group of religious people invaded, without prior warning, by a quasi-military arm of the government?

2. Wy did the American media and Congress so calmly accept the invasion by the government and the demonization of Koresh?

3. Why did no one question the propriety of the government labeling a group of religious people a "cult?"

4. Even so, why would belonging to a "cult" minimize your constitutional rights?

5. Why didn't the ATF treat the Branch Davidians like ordinary citizens, as did the local sheriff and Texas social workers?

6. How could key evidence, such as the metal front door Koresh opened, which was riddled with bullet holes from shots fired by the ATF into buildings on February 28, 1993, disappear?

7. Why did the ATF investigation, which had been prompted by disgruntled ex-Davidians begin and end in the summer of 1992?

8. Why was the investigation suddenly revived and vigorously pursued beginning after the November 1992 election?

9. Why did Littl Rock ATF chief, and friend of Bill Clinton, Bill Buford, place two calls to a former Davidian, Poia Vaega in New Zealand on New Year's Day, 1993 and January 3, 1993, to seek out a story concerning alleged sexual abuse of Vaega's sister?

10. Why did Bill Buford begin to assist in the investigation and why did he become a chief planner of the raid from his Little Rock office and later a participant in the raid with his Little Rock agents? And, why did they go first to New Orleans so that the media did not know they were actually from Little Rock?

11. Why did another Clinton Crony, Roger Altman, then Deputy Secretary of Treasury, (which administer ATF), fly out from Washington to visit Buford after he was injured in the February 28, 1993 raid?

12. Why hasn't anyone investigated the link between Buford and President Clinton?

13. Why were Democrats on the Committee, especially Rep. Charles Schumer (now SENATOR Charles Schumer) so obviously intent upon trying to evade the issue at hand - i.e., why nearly 100 American citizens had their home invaded and then ripped apart by army tanks, children and pregnant mothers gassed and shot at and finally incinerated as a direct result of government action?

14. Why did the Democrats on the Committee insist upon bringing in extraneous issues such as the possible interest of the National Rifle Association, and the lurid written statement read by a 14 year old girl about alleged sexual abuse four years earlier, that had not been substantiated or believed by her own mother or grandmother. Further more, as she read the statement, which seemed written not from the view of a young girl who was raped, but from the view of a man doing the raping, why did she stumble over words SHE supposedly wrote?

15. Why has there been no outcry at suggestions by members of the Congressional committee that they circumvent the First Amendment to the Constitution and find "some way" to "legislate cults" to prevent "gullible citizens" from joining them?

16. Why did the FBI use psychological warfare techniques on a building occupied by little children? 17. Why doesn't the press fully expose the misinformation and lies that agents of the government told the American people?

18. Why did the ATF use so much money and so many men to invade the isolated religious group where no citizen had filed a formal complaint against them, when there are so many uninvestigated complaints against heavily armed gangs and drug dealers who terrorize law abiding citizens in numerous high crime areas, such as South Los Angeles?

19. Why, if the tactics used against the Davidians are justified, didn't the ATF use them against crack houses in the cities of America?

20. Why has no one in government been held accountable for the decisions they made which led to the death of at least 76 Americans, most of whom were women and children.

21. Why is it taking so long to get the truth about the largest law enforcement disaster in the history of the United States out to the public? It is now more than six years since it took place.

22. Why was the ATF raid named "Operation Showtime?"

….Not surprisingly, nobody in the Justice Department was disciplined over Waco. Nobody resigned as a result of dozens of people dying at Waco. People where allowed to retire, or left the service with full benefits or fired and re-hired. However, as Jack Zimmerman, an attorney who went into the Davidian chapel and home during the seige to urge them to come out, said in 1993: "Nobody in the Justice Department has been disciplined over Waco. They have been disciplined over Ruby Ridge but not over Waco, and they are the same people! There were more tanks in Waco than there were in Somalia! And we had a Secretary of Defense resign over that alleged shortcoming because he had turned down a request for armor by American commanders in the field! He resigned because it was his mistake and men died…..

Washington Times 8/27/99 "…After conducting an investigation of their own, members of the famed Texas Rangers found that as a matter of fact the FBI did happen to fire two military-style pyrotechnic grenades during the April 19 attack, which ended in a terrible conflagration and the deaths of the 86 people inside, 24 of them children. James Francis, chairman of the Texas Department of Public Safety, told the Dallas Morning News that the Rangers have accumulated "overwhelming evidence" for their findings, some of it photographic, some of it physical, but all of it problematic for the government officials who led or approved the attack. A former FBI official who helped oversee the agency at Waco, Danny Coulson, has himself conceded that agents used the devices. One wonders who gave permission to agents to fire the devices, and why did no one acknowledge using them at the time? The news has forced Justice Department officials into Clintonian back flips. Agency spokesman Myron Marlin, who had dismissed such allegations as "nonsense" when an independent film maker raised them, abruptly had to announce that Justice was trying to get to the bottom of them. Miss Reno said Thursday she was "very, very frustrated" about the new findings. ….But neither the FBI nor the Justice Department has much credibility in the bank now. Miss Reno has ordered 40 FBI agents to reinvestigate the issue, and a report is due "within weeks." One wonders how they can be trusted to find out in weeks what they could not find out in six years. Sounds more like a job for the Texas Rangers. Or independent film makers. Whoever does the investigating, there is still more to the job. Mr. Francis says that members of the Army's secret Delta Force anti-terrorism squad were at Waco. The Pentagon has previously acknowledged military officials were present at the time, although it won't identify them. It also denies they were involved in any of the operations. Says Mr. Francis, "Some of the evidence that I have reviewed and been made aware of is very problematical as to the role of Delta Force at the siege." The military isn't supposed to be playing sheriff or otherwise carrying out domestic law-enforcement duties except with respect to anti-drug efforts. The General Accounting Office, an independent investigative arm of Congress, now says that in fact the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) called the military to the scene, citing possible drug-related activity at the compound. No one found any drug-related paraphernalia at the site though. …."

CNSNews.com 8/27/99 Justin Torres "…"They sat on information for six years and outright denied" that pyrotechnic devices were used, said Mark Corallo of the Government Reform and Oversight committee, chaired by Rep. Dan Burton (R-IN). "What else have they lied about under oath?" Corallo told CNSNews.com that Burton has "no confidence in the Attorney General's ability to conduct an investigation into her own department," and characterized the committee's contacts with the Department of Justice as "not very substantive." "The FBI has been much more helpful," Corallo said….. "

WorldNet Daily 8/27/99 L Rockwell "…The government killed them. Or least most people assumed so. Coming on the heels of several military aggressions abroad, big government appeared to be riding high after Clinton's 1992 victory, and with the dramatic increase in the size and aggressiveness of the federal police state, it seemed highly likely, even certain, that the BATF and the FBI simply decided to send these problem people to their deaths. What was to stop the agents from doing so? Does anyone really believe that these agents were just too caring and law-abiding to have done it? If that were true, the Feds wouldn't have tortured the people inside with recorded rabbit death screams played at high volume, cut off their water and electricity, and generally tried to drive them out of their homes, let alone pumped the church full of a poisonous tear gas banned for use against soldiers under international law. One by one the excuses for federal behavior evaporated: drugs, guns, child abuse, and aggressive political dissent weren't the reason…."

WorldNet Daily 8/27/99 L Rockwell "…After the massacre, the denials began. Clinton said they killed themselves. Reno echoed that same view. At congressional hearings, all the officers involved denied setting the fire. Elaborate scenarios were concocted, without a shred of evidence, designed to show how Koresh had started the fire. The Feds were indignant that anyone would doubt their word, and insulting to anyone who questioned their motives. It's taken six years, but this may be coming to an end….An Army training manual says that these devices lead to fires and sometimes even explode on impact. And yet even this whistle-blower doubts the devices led to the fire itself. That has led some people to doubt that Coulson himself is telling the whole truth. After all, his admission comes only after independent research got hold of pictures of the empty canisters held with other evidence by the Texas Rangers. …."

WorldNet Daily 8/27/99 L Rockwell "…The government's handling of this case from beginning has been a moral outrage. It is not enough that the Justice Department targeted the peaceful Davidians for reasons that are still unclear. It is not enough that they attempted to starve them out of house and home and then massacred them. It is not enough that the Feds immediately plowed the land under and destroyed evidence, arrogantly planting a US government flag in the mass grave. But to continue to show no regret, much less remorse, about the incident, except to attempt to make martyrs of the attacking agents themselves, and to continue to tell lie after lie, raises fundamental questions. The federal law-enforcement apparatus is misnamed. For my perspective, it wouldn't affect the question of federal guilt if the Davidians did burn their own community. It is an outrage that the Davidians were targeted in the first place. It is an outrage that the government, filled with officials who have sworn to uphold the Constitution, tried to starve out a religious community. If it turned out that Koresh, driven crazy by the government, finally set the place on fire, it wouldn't change the fact that Waco represents an appalling abuse of power. …."

Hon. Bob Barr 8/27/99 "…U.S. Representative Bob Barr (GA-7) today posed a series of questions to President Clinton regarding military involvement during a 1993 attack in Waco, Texas that left over 80 Americans dead. The text of Barr's letter follows: "I am disturbed to learn your Department of Justice has apparently spent the past six years lying to Congress and the American people about whether incendiary devices were used in the Waco attack. However, this issue pales in comparison to emerging evidence indicating the Administration may also have lied about the involvement of military special operations forces in the assault on April 19, 1993. "The Texas Department of Public Safety, and a former C.I.A. official have indicated military forces were deployed as forward elements of the assault. Additionally, there is further evidence, such as videotapes and Defense Department documents, that corroborate this evidence. "As you know, using military forces for domestic law enforcement is expressly illegal under U.S. posse comitatus law. For this reason, I urge you to reveal all the facts regarding military involvement at Waco immediately, so those responsible for any legal violations can be swiftly disciplined and prosecuted. To that end, I ask that you provide answers to the following questions immediately: 1) Were any active duty or reserve armed forces personnel present at, or in any other manner connected with, the planning, execution or review of the Waco assault? 2) If such personnel were so utilized, how many soldiers were used, what units were they drawn from, and what was their precise role in the assault? 3) If military personnel were so utilized, did they discharge any weapons or explosive devices, or assist law enforcement personnel in doing so? 4) In addition to personnel, what equipment and ordnance did the military utilize or make available during the siege and assault? 5) If military personnel were so utilized, who issued the orders allowing their involvement and did those orders provide for explicit rules of engagement? 6) As a matter of policy, who in your administration had the authority on April 19, 1993 to order military involvement in domestic law enforcement? 7) Given reports that military operations against the Branch Davidians were predicated at least in part on allegations of U.S. drug law violations, which might provide the only legal basis on which military equipment -- not personnel -- could be used in Waco, why was there no hard evidence before, during, or after the assault of drugs, drug paraphernalia, and any other violations of U.S. drug law? …"

www.texasrangers.org web site 8/27/99 "…As the DPS said shortly after the fire at the Branch Davidian compound in 1993, the Ranger inquiry, which was requested by the U.S. Department of Justice, would be the most complicated in the organization's history. Nearly a third of the Texas Ranger Division, working with DPS crime lab personnel, DPS Special Crimes investigators and other DPS personnel, collected thousands of pieces of evidence at the scene. Though the fire occurred six years ago, the DPS undertook the renewed inquiry in June, at the direction of DPS Public Safety Commission Chairman James B. Francis Jr. in response to questions raised concerning some of the evidence. We think it is important to make this point: The DPS is not investigating the FBI or the U.S. Department of Justice. Once the Rangers have completed their inquiry, the results will be sent to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Waco, which has jurisdiction in this matter…."

CNN TalkBack Live 8/27/99 "…BATTISTA: And there are other developments today. With us now from Dallas is CNN correspondent Tony Clark. He covered the Branch Davidian siege back in 1993. Also on the phone with us from Tyler, Texas is Lee Hancock, a reporter for "The Dallas Morning News." She broke a story today about alleged military involvement and the use of Delta Force commandos in the standoff. Lee, let me start with you. To what extent were these forces supposedly used? LEE HANCOCK, "DALLAS MORNING NEWS": Well, what I have been told by a former CIA employee was that it was his understanding in speaking with some members of the Delta Force unit, that there were Delta personnel who were active, who were involved in what happened down there. He would not tell to what extent that they were involved. He said they were in tanks and that they were in CEVs. This is something, of course, that the Department of Defense has flatly denied. ….BATTISTA: OK, so when your source used the word "active," did he describe that? HANCOCK: Well, not beyond saying that they were in the tanks and they were in the Bradleys, which, you know, would at least imply more than just a passive or advisory role. BATTISTA: Well, I did talk to a former Delta Force commander, right before the show, who told me that if they were driving the Bradleys that is within their jurisdiction, if you will. In other words, if people, the people in the FBI, did not know how to drive those vehicles, then the Delta Force personnel would drive them and still be within the legal limits of their involvement. HANCOCK: That's interesting. I had not heard that. But, I mean, he certainly would -- they are very strict on the involvement of military forces. From what the Defense Department says, they're very strict on the involvement of military forces in domestic law enforcement. So if that's correct, you know, he may well be correct. BATTISTA: Well, what do we know about the source, this Gene Cullen? Are there any other sources for the story? HANCOCK: Well, there is a gentleman by the name of James Francis. Mr. Francis is the chairman of the Texas Public Safety Commission. This is an agency that is, among other things, over the Texas rangers. The rangers were the lead investigators in the criminal case that ensued after the Davidian standoff ended. Mr. Francis said of Mr. Cullen's remarks that he knows or has been advised of evidence in the hands of police officers that may corroborate what Mr. Cullen is saying…..

CNN TalkBack Live 8/27/99 "…BATTISTA: Lee, how many military personnel are we talking about? Any numbers? HANCOCK: Well, you know, I've heard several numbers. One, there are some documents that have been released by the Department of Defense, under the Freedom of Information Act, and they indicate that there were three personnel from the special forces command. It does not say who they were. It, in fact, blanks out the name of the unit as classified. Now Mr. Francis has told me that it's his understanding, based on the evidence that he is aware of, that there were possibly more than three. Mr. Cullen says what he has heard from these Delta Force people that he spoke with; he heard that there were as many as 10. And again, I would say Mr. Cullen did tell me, he said, he doesn't know whether or not they're telling the truth, but he said these people, he believes, would have no reason to lie, and he didn't hear it from just one of them; he heard it from three or four.

 

CNN TalkBack Live 8/27/99 "…BATTISTA: If they were driving the Bradley vehicles -- and there is some thought that they were -- is that active involvement or advisory? REVELL: Well, I would think that would be -- require a very high level of authority, and I doubt very seriously that they were driving the Bradleys. However, if they were observing, they would have to be in the Bradleys, because there was outcoming gunfire from the compound, and they certainly couldn't observe in an unprotected location.

CNN TalkBack Live 8/27/99 "…BATTISTA: Well, where did the chain of truth start to breakdown? Because as I understand it, the FBI agents deposed six years ago in the initial report did admit to using pyrotechnic devices several times. Somehow that information didn't get passed on to anyone else? STONE: Well, I had this strange experience, after the report was actually published. I sent a letter and a preliminary comment to Louis Freeh about my concerns about Waco. At that point, several FBI agents themselves called me to describe things, which were, I thought, very, very serious matters, which were never put into the published reports of the Justice Department. BATTISTA: And what were those? STONE: So, I think what you're hearing, now is really a pattern that is all through what happened at Waco. BATTISTA: What were those serious matters? Can you tell us? STONE: Well, for example, one agent told me that he had advised them not to use psychological warfare against the Branch Davidians, because they were religious fanatics and it would drive them to suicide. And then the person in charge told them he was tying their hands, and the very next day, he wrote a report, urging them to use the psychological warfare, which they did. So they contravened their own experts, their own best advice, and did things which produced this tragedy.

CNN TalkBack Live 8/27/99 "…BATTISTA: We don't know if that's the case, though, do we? REVELL: We do not. And we don't know whether he received that information, and if it seems, and it, as you said, which was news to me, that an agent in a deposition -- an HRT agent had indicated they'd used a pyrotechnic device, then I think there has been a disconnect here that is very, very troublesome, and needs to be corrected. One of the problems in this, from the very outset, is the Justice Department and the FBI have been more concerned about the litigation issues than informing the public at large. And I think that in a case of this magnitude, that cannot be allowed to override the need for the public to know all of the facts, and to get them out early, and to stop all of this hearsay and consideration of, you know, things like the government intended to kill these people and so forth.

CNN TalkBack Live 8/27/99 "… BRANNON: Well, of course this gentleman is entitled to his own view. I would say if he chooses to look at the world in that way, then I would ask him one question: Please tell me, sir, under what conditions you believe a law enforcement authority is authorized to torture babies. If you can give me an example... BATTISTA: What do you mean by that? BRANNON: I mean that's what happened there. The children that I represent and that are now dead were attacked and tortured by the FBI. BATTISTA: How do you -- define "attacked and tortured." BRANNON: They were attacked at the beginning of the raid by hundreds of federal agents firing weapons. They were tortured by the various methods that you even illustrated at the beginning of the program here... BATTISTA: You mean the music? BRANNON: ... by noises, by cutting off the electricity, by various methods. And then, in the end, they decided that we will fire tear gas into these children, knowing the children did not have gas masks, and that, therefore, the other people will run out with them. So what they did was to say, we will torture babies because we don't like what their parents did. I don't believe that that is authorized, under any theory of proper law enforcement.

CNN TalkBack Live 8/27/99 "…REAVIS: May I say something, here, about that? Sue Commandante Marcos, the Mexican guerrilla, has been holding a good part of the state of Chiapas since 1994. The Mexican government says we're not going to dislodge him, because we know if we did, children would die. The Mexican government has not collapsed because it hasn't dislodged Marcos. It has not fallen into international disrepute. No harm has come to the Mexican people. The question, in my mind, is why did the American people think it was so imperative to do something so quickly to end that standoff with Koresh? Why don't we have the patience and the concern for children that our neighbors to the south show?

CNN TalkBack Live 8/27/99 "…KATHLEEN: Yes, it's been a while. I don't recall what the FBI did as far as trying to get the children to be safe, out of that house before all of this came about. BATTISTA: She's asking whether any efforts were made to get the children out. BRANNON: The answer is no. BATTISTA: Emphatically? BRANNON: Emphatically.

CNN TalkBack Live 8/27/99 "…BRANNON: It has not been established, and in fact, we strongly believe the evidence will go the other way, as to who started that fire. The reason that that information is coming out just now is not because of the civil lawsuit. The reason that you just heard them fess up to using pyrotechnic devices is because Mike McNolte is coming out with a new -- with a new documentary film. He went to Washington and showed it around on Capitol Hill. The FBI has seen it. And they had to come up with a spin doctor answer as to what do we say now, because they prove we have been lying. And so what we've heard is this story about, well, they only used a couple, and they only used them five hours before, and that will turn out to be false, as well. BATTISTA: As I understand it, though, the pyrotechnic device is not capable of starting a fire of that magnitude. BRANNON: Then you misunderstand the facts. They will -- if there's an flammable material near, they burn, and they will start a fire. And when you try to pick one up, you cannot pick it up because it is hot.

CNN TalkBack Live 8/27/99 "…REAVIS: Here is the point that's being overlooked in the present discussion: Everyone is looking for the ignition source. It's as if you had a cigarette lighter and the ignition source is the flint. But a cigarette lighter also has cotton that is soaked in a fluid that is highly flammable. Before that fire started, in the last couple of hours, the FBI fired 400 "ferret" rounds into that building, which soaked it in a chemical called methylene chloride, which is used in paint thinners. BRANNON: Which is highly flammable. REAVIS: That's right. The chemical manuals say "Do not use this indoors -- poses fire an explosion danger." So the FBI prepped that building for a fire, however it was ignited, and I don't think we know for certain how it was ignited yet.

CNN TalkBack Live 8/27/99 "…BRANNON: We have found out the additional information. It's getting the government to admit it that is the problem. And they've stonewalled it until they could not stonewall it any longer. That is after the Texas Rangers caught on to that they were being made a kind of "goat" by the FBI, and this horde of evidence that was down there that they would not let anybody have access to. Then they -- Mike McNolte managed to get access to it and discovered those pyrotechnic round shells. That's why it is just now coming out. REAVIS: There's another answer to that question, too. And that is that the media didn't do its job in 1993, investigating what happened. It accepted the FBI's version as true. BRANNON: I second that motion.

Cox News Service 8/27/99 Bob Dart "…An infantry weapons expert said Friday that a fire ``could certainly'' have been caused by the type of tear gas grenade that the FBI has admitted using at the Branch Davidian compound near Waco, Texas, six years ago. Charles Cutshaw, an editor at Jane's Defense Information Group and a retired U.S. Army intelligence officer, said that M-651 CS canisters use a pyrotechnic charge to distribute a potent form of the fine particles commonly referred to as tear gas. ``Under the right conditions,'' he said, setting off one of these canisters could ignite a secondary fire. The conditions include the grenade exploding on something that burns, such as wood. …"

Associated Press 8/27/99 C Bryson Hull "…The government's admission that pyrotechnic devices were used the day the Branch Davidian compound burned is sweet satisfaction for a filmmaker who has said for years that authorities are lying about the Waco tragedy. "Getting answers is satisfying, but it will be much more satisfying when the people who are responsible are in prison,'' said Michael McNulty, whose six years of digging preceded the latest revelations about the 51-day siege. "All of this is not about Mike McNulty, or the films that have been done, or about selling the films. It's about finding the truth.'' ….The film cast doubt on Justice Department claims it used only non-burning grenades on April 19, 1993. McNulty said he found physical evidence to that effect - one pyrotechnic shell and a photograph of another shell that had been misidentified - more than a year after the movie's release. The evidence will be included in McNulty's second film, "Waco: A New Revelation,'' to be released this fall. ….The Texas Rangers, custodians of the evidence through an arrangement with the federal government, earlier this year opened an inquiry into evidence identified by McNulty. …."

Dallas Morning News 8/27/99 G Robert Hillman Lee Hancok "…Attorney General Janet Reno was considering the appointment of an outside investigator to direct the review of the FBI's role in the fiery end to the 1993 standoff with the Branch Davidians, a Justice Department official said Friday. A team of FBI agents was still being assembled at the request of FBI Director Louis Freeh but their work will await the appointment of a team leader, said bureau spokesman Tron Brekke. …"

 

WorldNetdaily 8/28/99 Betsy Gibson "…Contrary to public statements made in recent days, Attorney General Janet Reno and FBI officials planned the final deadly assault on the Branch Davidian church in Waco, Texas, with top officers of the Delta Force, according to classified documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act and Special Forces sources. The FBI actually requested that Special Forces Delta Force operatives consult with them, be present on the scene and maintain equipment in preparation for a resolution of the 1993 51-day standoff that resulted in a fire that killed 80 civilians including many children, according to the documents and a knowledgeable military source. Despite this powerful evidence, as of yesterday an FBI spokesman, Tron Brekke, was still telling the Dallas Morning News that he could not say whether Delta Force might have actively assisted the FBI in any way in Waco …"

WorldNetdaily 8/28/99 Betsy Gibson "…Meanwhile, the documented information WorldNetDaily has obtained reveals that not only did Reno actively seek involvement by Delta Force, but she was warned at one meeting she attended with the FBI, Delta Force Colonel John Boykin and Webster Hubbell that the use of CS tear gas would have a variety of effects, one of which would be "Some people would panic, Quote: "mothers may run off and leave infants." …A WorldNetDaily Special Forces source who analyzed this and other statements says Delta Force was clearly uncomfortable with any association with the FBI's plans at Waco….."

WorldNetdaily 8/28/99 Betsy Gibson "…WorldNetDaily's source says he believes that statement shows again how Delta Force cringed over getting involved at WACO… . These official and unofficial comments went ignored and, in fact, one Special Operations Officer was threatened with court-martial if he continued to protest, the source said. At another point in the document, Delta Force personnel explain to Reno that Special Forces encounters are almost always militaristic and involve outright enemies who are often heavily armed. Delta Force explains that in its standard modus operandi it was, "The principles of surprise, speed and violence of action [that] were essential to any operation. [redacted] stated that momentum should be maintained and that ground gained should not be relinquished." A WND military source says "violence of action" usually refers to killing the "hostiles." …"

WorldNetdaily 8/28/99 Betsy Gibson "…A former Special Forces commando says he spoke yesterday to a Delta Force commando who was present at the final tear-gas assault on the Branch Davidian compound. Keith Idema, who was a member of Special Forces and Special Operations units from 1975 to 1992 and helped to train hostage rescue team personnel for both Delta Force and the FBI, says pictures from Waco released this week by the Texas Department of Public Safety have been mistakenly identified by the department as gun silencers and suppressors belonging to David Koresh and his followers which were found inside the compound after the fire. Idema says they are actually concussion grenades manufactured by a company, Defense Technology, and purchased by the FBI. Idema also says the bright light seen on video footage as flashing inside the building moments before the fire broke out have been misidentified as a fire started by Branch Davidian leader David Koresh, when, in fact, to the trained eye of a Special Forces explosive expert it is unmistakably the flash caused by a "concussion grenade" that has been lobbed inside the compound…."

WorldNetdaily 8/28/99 Betsy Gibson "… A concussion grenade uses a brilliant flash and loud bang to render an enemy in its vicinity blind, deaf and immobile for a brief period during which commandos can overpower them. Such grenades should be used only for military purposes and were wholly inappropriate, if not illegal to be used in a situation involving women and children -- and any situation where potentially inflammable tear gas was still hanging in the air, the former Special Forces operative said….The concussion grenades and military fuses he says were used moments before the fire broke out could have ignited the lingering tear gas vapors and started the fire. Idema also points out that other photographs released clearly show an FBI agent with a .50-caliber Browning machine gun next to his leg. Such weapons are to be used only against armored equipment and weapons, certainly not civilians, says Idema…."Why were they there?" he asks. "Koresh didn't have any tanks or helicopters, or APCs. The Geneva Convention states that these weapons are never to be used in an anti-personnel role."

http://www.accessatlanta.com/partners/ajc/epaper/editions/today/news_14.html 8/28/99 Jeff Nesmith Cox Washington Bureau "….Documents released to Cox Newspapers on Friday by the FBI indicate that Col. William Boykin, then Delta Force commander, and Brig. Gen. Peter Schoomaker, then the assistant division commander of the 1st Cavalry Division at Fort Hood, Texas, were the previously unidentified officers who told Reno use of CS gas, a potent form of tear gas, would make the compound "untenable." ….. According to the widely circulated memorandum, Special Forces members were at Waco on April 19, 1993, but strictly as observers, whose activities were within legal guidelines and had been approved by the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The document, written May 13, nearly a month after the fiery end of the Waco standoff, was a synopsis of an April 14 meeting involving Reno, then-FBI Director William Sessions, then-Associate Attorney General Webster Hubbell, two Army officers, an "unknown scientist (expert on CS)" from the Army and several FBI agents. Boykin has since been promoted to major general and given overall command of the Army Special Forces Command at Fort Bragg, N.C. Schoomaker has been promoted to general and is commander of the multiservice Special Operations Command at MacDill Air Force Base in Florida. …"

Newsday.com 8/28/99 Michelle Mittelstadt "…Prompted by the latest furor over federal law enforcement's conduct during the final, fateful hours in the 1993 standoff with the Branch Davidians, Congress is scurrying to review years-old hearing records and organize a fresh round of inquiries….Burton, who dispatched investigators to Austin this week to review evidence gathered from the compound's charred remains, pledged to convene hearings, calling them ``absolutely essential.'' House Majority Whip Tom DeLay, R-Texas, agreed: ``We've got to get to the truth,'' he said. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, who pronounced the credibility of Attorney General Janet Reno's Justice Department at ``an all-time low,'' is moving towards hearings as well. House Judiciary Committee staffers are wading through testimony from the 10 days of nationally televised House hearings in 1995 to determine if new inquiries are warranted. And Rep. Bob Barr, who participated in the earlier hearings, suggested that Congress should consider perjury charges….. .But neither the Justice Department nor Congress can properly investigate the matter, argued Danny Coulson, the former senior FBI official who touched off the controversy by publicly revealing that military pyrotechnic canisters were used in the waning hours of the 51-day siege. He said the Justice Department ``has no business'' investigating itself and called congressional hearings political theater. He suggested an independent investigation. ``It needs to be investigated and decided in a cooler environment, one away from the TV cameras,'' said Coulson, who was a deputy assistant FBI director during the standoff. …"


Excite 8/29/99 Jim Wolf Reuters "…A powerful Republican lawmaker said Sunday that he would not be surprised if Attorney General Janet Reno had been involved in a cover-up of the deadly fire that ended an FBI standoff with a religious cult in 1993. "It would not surprise me if Janet Reno tried to keep a lid on this, because I think she's done that in other areas," Dan Burton, chairman of the House Committee on Government Reform, said in a television interview. ….Burton, of Indiana, said on the NBC program "Meet the Press" he did not trust Reno. He said he planned to launch congressional oversight hearings "as soon as possible." He alleged that the Justice Department had asked the Texas Rangers, the state law enforcement authority, to keep information about the event "under lock and key for the past six years." "For them to say that they didn't know pyrotechnic devices were used just stretches credulity," he said. "I think the attorney general should be held accountable for not telling the American people about this for the past six years. Because if they didn't know about it, they should have." "So when you ask me, do I trust her, I certainly do not. And that's why my committee is going to do a very thorough investigation of this whole matter," he said. Burton left open the possibility that Reno and the FBI might still be hiding a link between the pyrotechnic rounds and the deadly fire at Waco….."

8/28/99 Michelle Mittelstadt AP FoxNews "…Prompted by the latest furor over federal law enforcement's conduct during the final, fateful hours in the 1993 standoff with the Branch Davidians, Congress is scurrying to review years-old hearing records and organize a fresh round of inquiries. …. "It is now clear that the Justice Department misled the Congress and the American people," said House Government Reform Committee Chairman Dan Burton, R-Ind., accusing officials of "sitting on this evidence for six years, all the while maintaining that it didn't exist." …. Spurred by the FBI's reversal, Barr and others are pressing for inquiries far afield of the tear gas issue. They are demanding answers to some nagging controversies, among them why the Army's secretive Delta Force was on the scene, and whether shots were fired into the compound by federal agents on the siege's final day — a contention the government has vigorously denied. "There have always been serious lingering questions and now, with this latest information, I think it's imperative that we look into it," Barr said….. "

8/28/99 New York Post "…


OK, so now not only does America learn that incendiary-type tear-gas canisters were indeed in use the day the Branch Davidian compound burned at Waco - but that officers of the United States Army were present as well. At the very least, this violates the spirit of one of the most important laws ever passed in this country - the Posse Comitatus Act of 1878, which forbade the use of the U.S. military for domestic law-enforcement. To be sure, Washington insists that the "special operations" personnel (reportedly, Delta Force anti-terrorist commandos) took no part whatsoever in the April 19, 1993, events that led to the incineration of the compound and 80 of the men, women and children who were inside. …. The Posse Comitatus Act was amended, in 1982, to permit the military to assist in domestic counter-terrorism investigations involving a possible threat from nuclear weapons. But that has no relevance here. The Branch Davidians may have been nuts, and gun-runners to boot, but that doesn't excuse lawlessness on the part of the FBI - or the Army - in bringing them to heel. The fact is that the Justice Department - and now, the Pentagon - have to be turned upside down and shaken hard until the full truth comes out about Waco. Only then will Congress be equipped to do whatever it must to make sure that, next time, the law is obeyed. 056 …"

Transcript: McNulty on Evans & Novak 8/28/99 "…ROBERT NOVAK, CO-HOST: I'm Robert Novak. Rowland Evans and I will look at the return of the Waco tragedy by questioning a senior member of the Senate Judiciary and Government Affairs committees. ROWLAND EVANS, CO-HOST: He is Republican Senator Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania….. EVANS: She promised an investigation, but Republicans in Congress made it clear that they do not trust the Justice Department to investigate itself….. MIKE MCNULTY, PRODUCER, "WACO: A NEW REVOLUTION": Well, sir, first of all, I have to credit the backing of the film production company, MGA Films, for pursuing this whole story. Without them, it wouldn't have happened. And the new film, "Waco: A New Revelation," is going to be just that. And the way we got it was persistence -- I mean, we've been at it for -- I've been at it collectively for almost seven years -- and a little friendly persuasiveness in showing the error of ways, you might say, to certain parties down in Waco that had access to this evidence. The assistant U.S. attorney saw some documents that we showed him that showed that he was hung out to dry by the United States military, particularly Delta Force, in the course of events during the 1993 siege. EVANS: Now, let me ask you one more on that. What was the most important single piece of information you think you've got, Mr. McNulty? MCNULTY: You know, it's hard to say. There's probably eight or nine specific important parts. But one of the most startling and shocking was the gun fight at the back of the building that preceded the fire by about an hour. And this was a -- this was a hellacious gun fight between the Branch Davidians and what appears to be HRT or FBI hostage rescue team members and members of the elite Delta Force unit. NOVAK: And members of the what? I'm sorry? MCNULTY: I'm sorry? NOVAK: And you say, and members of the what? EVANS: What unit? MCNULTY: Oh, members of the United States Army's Combat Applications Group, Fort Bragg, North Carolina, otherwise known as Delta Force. NOVAK: And the Delta Force, Mr. McNulty, you believe was there operationally? Because the line has been from the administration that they were only in an advisory role. MCNULTY: Well, first of all, even in the advisory capacity, Mr. Clinton would have had to have signed a waiver. I would suggest that all of you in the field of journalism -- journalistic endeavors, review the presidential decision directives during that time period. I think you may find one that applies to the waiver for Delta Force. Second of all, in the film, "Waco: A New Revelation," you're going to see several points of evidence that say, no, they were forward deployed and pulling triggers…."

Drudge Show 8/28/99 Freeper Clinton’s a rapist "…Waco: A New Revelation out on video middle of next month…." Freeper rowdee "…McNulty said the paper trail leads to FBI hq in WA to the DOJ across the street to Hubbell's mouth to Foster; and the paperwork winds up inHillary's office! …" and "…McNulty says he only knew of one 40 mm projectile...now Coulson has volunteered there is two. McNulty says he is not accusing them of this 40 mm starting the fire, but what about the other things he's uncovered…." Freeper Clinton’s a Rapist "…McNulty says Reno's flat-out lying about not knowing about the CS projectiles." And "…New film includes video of Delta Force members in action behind Mount Carmel before and during fire…." Freeper rowdee "…David Hardy on phone...using FOIA...about 2 yrs ago started with military...broad sweeping for any info...about 6 months to get info. FBI and BATF deny...has to get court order. Said there are 3 - 4 films ATF recorded of front door on day of assault...can't find…"

Waco: The Rules of Engagement 8/28/99 "…Webster Hubbell, Former Associate Attorney General, Clinton Administration: When the FBI advised me of their plan and the possibility and the possibility of the insertion of gas, I did notify the White House Counsel. And I kept in contact through the White House Counsel. And I'm sure the White House Counsel advised the President . . . It wasn't until, I believe, Friday or Saturday that the decision was made to go ahead. And at that point, the Attorney General did call the President of the United States and I was in the room when she made that call…."

NewsMax.com 8/28/99 "…On Friday, White House press secretary Joe Lockhart denied that President Clinton granted a legally required waiver for an elite U.S. military unit to participate in the FBI's attack on the Branch Davidian compound at Waco six years ago. By federal statute, the U.S. military may not actively engage in any domestic law enforcement operation unless specifically authorized by the president. But a document reviewed by Inside Cover indicates that Clinton sought a role for the military in the 51 day standoff, which could link the White House to the elite military unit's involvement, now alleged to be active, in the final Waco conflagration. 80 civilians, including 25 innocent children, perished in the final assault on the Branch Davidian compound. In its Friday editions, The Dallas Morning News reported the involvement of the military's elite hostage rescue team Delta Force, citing multiple sources who described the unit's role in the Waco debacle as hands-on and operational….. Speaking to the press from the Rose Garden just 24 hours after flames consumed the Branch Davidian compound, Clinton attempted to explain the process that led up to the distasterous decision to launch the attack. Part of that process, Clinton unequivocally stated, was his personal decision to involve the military at the outset of the confrontation:…Questions now center on whether Delta Force was authorized to play a hands-on role in the gruesome Waco assault. Friday's Dallas Morning News quotes former CIA agent Gene Cullen, who said that Delta Force was "present, up front and close" when the final attack was launched. Cullen added that Delta Force personnel had told him that the elite unit "had 10 operators down there, that they were involved in the advanced forward stages of (the FBI's April 19, 1993) operations." Texas Department of Public Safety chairman James B. Francis, Jr. told the paper, "I'm advised that there is some evidence that may corroborate" the allegation that Delta Force participated in the assault. ….Inside Cover gratefully acknowledges the contribution of L.N. Smithee, who researched Clinton's post Waco remarks for the Free Republic website…."

AP 8/28/99 C Bryson Hull "…For years, filmmaker Michael McNulty accused the government of lying about its actions during the seven-week confrontation with Branch Davidians that ended in fiery tragedy in 1993. Finally this week, after years of denials, the government admitted it did use pyrotechnic devices the day the Davidian's Mount Caramel compound burned down, killing David Koresh and about 80 followers. But while McNulty said he is gratified the truth is finally coming out -- he believes there is more that is yet to be revealed. ``Getting answers is satisfying, but it will be much more satisfying when the people who are responsible are in prison,'' he said. ``All of this is not about Mike McNulty, or the films that have been done, or about selling the films. It's about finding the truth.'' …."

Branch Davidian Website 8/28/99 "…In late 1995, I submitted Freedom of Information Act requests to BATF and FBI relating to critical information on the events at Waco. Neither agency responded, and in December, 1995, I commenced a Freedom of Information Act suit (Hardy v. FBI & ATF, No. 95-883-TUC-ACM, D. Ariz.). After weathering two motions to dismiss, fourteen motions for stay or extension of time, and four motions for summary judgment, we obtained quantities of useful data, some of which the agencies admit was never revealed to Congressional investigators. Some of the most interesting data may, however, never see the light of day. ATF's affidavits contend that all of its photographic and video evidence met a sticky end. In particular: The "official" videocam, set up to film the operation, mysteriously ejected its tapes rather than recording them….. That wasn't the only "official" videocam filming the front of the building during the raid. There was another, mounted on a tripod beside the communications van. And another at a sniper position. And still another (although this may overlap with one of the first two) filming from an "elevated position." Mysteriously, none of these videotapes can be found. And the agency officials who saw them in the past say that every single camera malfunctioned in the seconds before the raid. (Quality control has gone downhill, apparently). The "official" still camera's film....and indeed the official still camera...vanished from a table in raid headquarters, surrounded by Federal agents, during the raid. (Crime may be rising, but you would think a room full of Federal agents would be safe from thieves)….."

Orange County Register 8/29/99 "…The evidence trickling, then pouring out this week about the 1993 federal assault on the Branch Davidian home in Waco, Texas suggests that the FBI has acted akin to President Clinton when it comes to potentially embarrassing episodes. Does anyone doubt that if no semen-stained dress had been produced that the White House would still be referring to Monica as an unstable stalker? Similarly, if the Texas Rangers hadn't collected some of the evidence before the feds bulldozed the entire site after the tragic fire at Waco, and the Texas Department of Public Safety hadn't preserved it, would the FBI now be admitting that it is just possible that its agents fired "a very limited number" of potentially incendiary tear gas cartridges during the final assault on Mount Carmel, during which 76 people were killed? …. Whether the government started the fire that consumed the Branch Davidian home that day or not, the entire siege, from start to finish, was an outrage. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms began with a needlessly aggressive military-style assault — poorly executed — to serve warrants on trivial firearms charges. Instead of apologizing and withdrawing, federal agencies used tactics honed for terrorists against a group of eccentric religious believers. Numerous lies were promulgated in an effort to demonize the Davidians, characterizations far harsher than the stated concerns of relatives of some of those inside. Repeated efforts by religious leaders to mediate the stand-off were rebuffed in favor of the "tactical" — i.e., armed assault — approach. …"

Drudge link 8/30/99 Deb Weiss "…At the White House, while the president ducked and covered, his War Room went to work to neutralize the potentially toxic effects of Waco. Their greatest asset was the national press, which crumbled at once into stunning passivity, megaphoning White House spin and trotting out push-polls that asked the questions the White House wanted asked. Did the people blame their government, the polls inquired: or did they believe that David Koresh had, in the infamous phrase, 'brought it on himself'? (This is the language rapists and wife-beaters use, to blame their victims.) Instead of probing the official account and demanding answers to troubling questions (it took the internet to do that), many establishment journalists worked with the administration to silence and discredit its critics. Through the power of the press, they transformed the Davidians from people who (whatever their tics) were mostly sincere, rather sad individuals who simply longed for the communion of faith, into monstrous cartoons -- cultists, child-molesters, subhumans who, having resisted their government, deserved to die…..Overnight, the press remade Attorney-General Janet Reno as a kind of secular saint, adored for her mournful declaration, endlessly repeated, that she accepted full responsibility for Waco. She did it, as we know, for the children. Yes. Well. This is the Clinton Era, and 'accepting full responsibility' means never having to say you're sorry…..At some point, though, they, and we, will have to come to terms with the fact that on a windy April day in 1993, scores of human souls were condemned to an agonizing death at Waco, on the flimsiest of pretexts, without benefit of trial, for the simple reason that their government had the power to make it happen…."

New York Post 8/30/99 Steve Dunleavy "…DAVID KORESH, the virus of undeniable evil and madness absent in his voice, was talking as if relating a walk in the park. "I have a bullet wound in my stomach. There is an infant who has been shot to death," he told me. It was shortly after the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms siege, at 9:30 a.m. on Feb. 28, 1993, left a trail of life blood like a Balkan massacre. In an incredible stroke of luck, if that is the appropriate word, we had called his listed telephone number in the Waco compound and he actually answered. I spoke to him about four times that early morning in February, and his second-in-charge, Steve Richards, actually called me back collect and told me the dead infant was Koresh's newborn son…."

New York Post 8/30/99 Steve Dunleavy "…On April 19, 1993, the country was immobilized as it watched a holocaust unfold and more than 80 people become charred memories. They are, certainly to me, memories of one of the most monumental acts of incompetence of law and disorder that I have ever seen in my life. …What was and is important is why, in good God's name, did this moron Reno send in the cavalry in the first place? Don't switch the blame onto the FBI - they're obeying her orders, and she said when she first got the job, "The buck stops here."…. The point is, when the ATF tragically screwed up in the attack on the compound in what was later learned to be an orchestrated press release, Reno thought she could get some brownie points. If you had watched that video, you would have seen those giant bulldozers with claws smashing into that compound. I will tell you what caused that fire. That terrible pyre that would be the graveyard of humanity. It was those giant claws that overturned dozens of hurricane lamps, since electricity had been turned off in the compound. In her defense, Reno showed videotape from the super-intelligent AWAC aircraft flying overhead that showed stick figures running toward areas of heat. Therefore, they must have been lighting the fires. No, you idiot, they were trying to put out the fires from the hurricane lamps that were knocked over by these giant claws that were rocking the compound like an earthquake…."

8/30/99 New York Post "…Janet Reno, in her never-give-an-unnecessary-inch defense of Bill Clinton and the scandals that have plagued his presidency since the beginning, long ago forfeited her personal credibility. These latest revelations demonstrate, unequivocally, that - regarding Waco - she is either complicit or incompetent. Either way, now is the time to take her at her word at least in this respect. "I'm accountable," she said in 1993. "The buck stops with me." It sure does. Janet Reno must resign…."

8/30/99 New York Post Deborah Orin "…Schumer (D-N.Y.) isn't the first to call for an outside probe, but his remarks are notable because he's a Democrat who normally defends Attorney General Reno and the Clinton administration. ….Right after the Waco siege, Reno justified the decision to take action on grounds that children were being abused at the cult compound - although it later turned out there was no evidence that was true. For years, Waco - and the torching of the Branch Davidian cult's compound - has been a cause celebre among conspiracy theorists on the right, but the new revelations have raised doubts among Democrats. …."

8/30/99 Charleston Post and Courier "…Enough evidence surfaced last week to make it clear that the public does not have the full story of what happened during the deadly April 19, 1993, federal raid on the Branch Davidian compound near Waco, Texas. The disclosures demand a fresh investigation by an independent panel of experts, as well as new congressional hearings now called for. New evidence makes it obvious that the last official inquiry, conducted by the Justice Department in 1993, was an incomplete whitewash designed to deflect criticism from the department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Attorney General Janet Reno. ….. "It was clearly written to vindicate the attorney general," former Watergate special prosecutor Henry S. Ruth Jr. recently told The New York Times. Mr. Ruth was one of three former federal prosecutors asked by the Treasury Department in 1993 to provide a candid review of the role played by the Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms and Tobacco in the incidents leading to the April 19 siege. Unlike the internal Justice investigation, their independent report led to major changes at the Treasury Department unit….. Ms. Reno wants to put the blame on the FBI for failing to tell her about the incendiary devices, and has promised to put 40 agents on the case to find out who's responsible. But any new internal probe will face the same institutional obstacles that the first one did. It is unlikely to focus needed light on Ms. Reno…. At one point Ms. Reno said she decided to launch the raid because federal personnel on the scene were tired. That is a very weak premise for taking a major life-and-death decision. At another time she said she had been told the children in the compound were being abused. But then-FBI Director William Sessions contradicted her, according to the Chicago Tribune. She said there was no prospect of reaching an agreement with cult leader David Koresh, a statement that has been contradicted by his lawyers….. She has said she was so concerned about fire in the compound that she insisted non-incendiary means be used to deliver tear gas. But the Chicago Tribune pointed out that no firefighting equipment was on hand as the federal assault began, and that water to the compound had been shut off by federal officials….."

Original Sources (www.originalsources.com) 8/30/99 Mary Mostert "…In 1995 I watched, and taped DAYS of testimony during the Congressional Hearings during which Reno managed to say almost nothing - certainly nothing about the involvement of Delta force. There was conflicting testimony about the flammability of the CS gas which, the Davidians claimed, was the agent which killed most of the children, who were underground in a shelter that they believed was the safest area of the facility. Government witnesses denied categorically that a flammable substance had been used and claimed the Davidians had set the fire themselves and killed their own children. I might point out that there are STILL Davidians in prison over this event - after the media had demonized David Koresh, just like they have demonized the Serbs in recent months. …. Remember the clip, played over, and over, and over on network news in which David Koresh was saying "I am Jesus Christ?" A lot of talk show mileage was gotten out of the often played remark. However, nothing preceding or following the abrupt - "I am Jesus Christ" statement was EVER played. And, you know why? Because David Koresh was responding to a stupid question by a reporter in which he was stating that "...if that is correct, then I am Jesus Christ." His statement was followed by a burst of laughter because Koresh had put the reporter down. Only, it seems, the reporter had the last laugh because he doctored the tape to Koresh by cutting everything before and after "I am Jesus Christ" and was able to portray him as a monstrous fraud who claimed to be Jesus Christ who raped little girls and used religion as a means of controlling his followers. …."

Original Sources (www.originalsources.com) 8/30/99 Mary Mostert "…Now, exactly who was at that meeting? A document, written May 13, 1993 nearly a month after the fiery end of the Waco standoff, giving a synopsis of the April 14 meeting indicates it involved Reno, Col. William Boykin, then Delta Force commander, and Brig. Gen. Peter Schoomaker, then the assistant division commander of the 1st Cavalry Division at Fort Hood, Texas, who were the previously unidentified officers who told Reno use of CS gas, a potent form of tear gas, plus then-FBI Director William Sessions, then-Associate Attorney General Webster Hubbell, two Army officer and several FBI agents. Boykin and Schoomaker told Reno the CS gas would make the compound "untenable" Who in that group would have been competent to answer the question of how the theology of the Branch Davidians might lead them to react to a military attack by government forces? Was the question merely one of what CS does PHYSICALLY to human subjects? If so, what the question about the effect CS gas would have on the so-called "rebellious religious cult?" What, exactly, did their religion have to do with the decision to gas them? …"

Original Sources (www.originalsources.com) 8/30/99 Mary Mostert "…While Reno was asking the Delta Force commander what effect the gas would have on Koresh and his band of followers, David Koresh was working day and night on an analysis of the meaning of the "seven seals" of the Book of Revelation in the Bible and what it meant. He had told his attorney, Dick DeGuerin on April 14, five days before the attack began, in a letter that he would "come out" of Mt. Carmel, when he had completed his treatise on the Seven Seals….Former FBI agent Jeff Jamar testified on July 27, 1995 that he would have cancelled the CS Gas operation had there been any evidence that Koresh was working on his Seven Seals treatise following his April 14th pledge to come out and challenged the congressional committee to listen to the negotiation tapes of the last few days. In fact, the negotiation transcripts show that Koresh WAS working on the manuscript and that Jamar's testimony, as well as that of agent Byron Sage, was completely in error on this point. Branch Davidian Steve Schneider, stated clearly on Friday afternoon, April 16, that Koresh had finished the first Seal, was working on the second, and that he had SEEN the handwritten papers, around 28-30 pages, as David was working on them. (Tape 236, p.29). Jamar quoted Steve as saying "I haven't even seen the first one" but he took the quote totally out of context. That quote occurs on the same tape (#236, p.2), and it is obvious that Steve means he had not been given it yet to edit, not that David had done nothing. He further says the editing work will "take no time at all" …."

Original Sources (www.originalsources.com) 8/30/99 Mary Mostert "…And what was the search about? Guns. Why did the Davidians have guns? Well, they had a license to buy and sell guns. That was one of the means the group had to support themselves and their families and their buildings. The local sheriff had previously come and gotten their gun, checked to see if any were "illegal" guns, and had RETURNED them. He didn't conclude that any illegal activity was taking place….."

Original Sources (www.originalsources.com) 8/30/99 Mary Mostert "…Allen Stone, a contributor to the campaigns of liberal Democrats, film reviewer and the only member of the Justice Department's panel appointed after the tragedy at Waco who had been openly critical both of the federal agencies involved and of the subsequent government investigation, wrote: "Because I was very concerned about the lethal risks to small children of prolonged exposure to CS gas, I asked many questions about the tank plan. Not until William Gazecki's film, (Waco: Rules of Engagement) however, did I learn that the FBI intended to deposit the noxious substance directly on the bunker where they believed the children would be. Nor was I informed that tanks would push down walls to reach that location. The FBI plan in fact imposed much greater risk of loss of life than I was told or had imagined. Gazecki may therefore be correct in believing that some Branch Davidians were crushed by tanks. I had never before considered that possibility." Stone also noted in the review of Gazecki's award-winning film that "The documentary's third kind of evidence is based entirely on heat-sensitive film and an expert's interpretation of it. The expert repeatedly points to flashing lights on the film which he claims are bursts of heat that do not occur in nature and can only be made by automatic weapons. He asserts that those weapons are firing into the compound on the side away from the television cameras. There has already been enough discussion of this heat-sensitive evidence in the media to suggest that Gazecki's expert has given a plausible but not irrefutable opinion. If it is true, then many FBI agents knew about it and there was a massive cover-up." ….."

http://www.newsmax.com/showinsidecover.shtml?a=1999/8/30/101837 8/30/99 "…According to Foster's widow Lisa, the events of April 19 caused the late Deputy White House Counsel "a great deal of stress" and left Foster "horrified." After the Branch Davidian compound burned, Foster told his wife that he felt "everything was his fault." Lisa Foster revealed her husband's deep anguish over Waco to FBI investigators in 1994 as they probed possible reasons for Foster's alleged depression. In May 1995 the Washington Times obtained a copy of her FBI interview, reporting the bombshell under the headline: "Foster Felt Waco Debacle Was 'His Fault.'" The longtime Clinton friend's distress about Waco and his own role in planning the ill-fated raid had not been previously disclosed But according to a then-newly released Justice Department report on Waco, the White House was briefed on the FBI's decision to end the standoff with tanks and tear gas six days before the April 19 conflagration. The FBI met with top Clinton aides Bernard Nussbaum, Webster Hubbell, Bruce Lindsey and Foster for 45 minutes that day…..None of Clinton's people present at the meeting voiced objections to the planned escalation, said the Times. The participants made no mention of allegations that Branch Davidian leader David Koresh had been abusing children in the compound -- the reason Attorney General Janet Reno offered later to justify the attack. Foster's death was ruled a suicide by government probers based in part on a suicide note the White House produced six days after his death. In that note one line reads: "FBI lied in their report to the AG (attorney general)." …"

Washington Weekly 8/30/99 J Peter Mulhern "…In an understatement that would be remarkable even in Great Britain where understatement is an art form, Ms. Reno responded to a question about the effect of disseminating lies for six years by saying: "I don't think it's very good for my credibility." Proof positive that Ms. Reno and her department have covered up key facts regarding the events at Waco is "not very good for [Reno's] credibility. This is sort of like saying that the storming of the Bastille was not very good for the Bourbon family, or that the Hindenberg disaster was not very good for lighter than air travel….Only if an investigation revealed that government agents either deliberately or recklessly slaughtered the Branch Davidians in a fit of fascist frustration and that neither the President nor the Attorney General cared enough to stop them would anyone credit its conclusions. Long before that happens, the Bourbons will once again reign in France….. "

UPI 8/30/99 "…Attorney General Janet Reno (Monday) is looking for someone outside the Justice Department to head an independent investigation of FBI actions at the end of the 1993 Waco, Texas, siege, sources tell UPI.. …"

Freeper Brian Moseley Fox News Channel 8/30/99 "…Just Breaking on Fox. Subpoenas for Texas Rangers and someone named Johnson (attorney?) More as hear it.... " Freeper go star go "…Texas Rangers and the U.S. Attorney from Waco. More subpeonas expected. Looking for documents from Rangers and U.S. Attorney about the use of cs gas. Looking to get Rangers special report on the seige. Also new subpeonas to be for FBI and Military…."

New York Post 8/30/99 Steve Dunleavy "…Waco is redneck country, and the Koreshes of this world were hardly welcome. But even the reddest of those necks would later say: "He used to jog down to this coffee shop from the compound, which was four miles away." In other words, a Boy Scout troop could have picked him up, let alone a bloody battle and a siege that would forever stain Reno's reputation…."

Washington Post 8/30/99 Kenneth Cooper "…Four members of congressional committees responsible for oversight of the Justice Department, including two Democrats who have been Reno supporters, urged an independent investigation because they believe the latest revelation has seriously damaged the department's credibility….. Hutchinson, on CNN, proposed either a commission appointed by Congress or a House-Senate committee that would not rely on the FBI to do investigative work……Reno is said to be contemplating an independent investigation that would have either a leader or investigators from outside the Justice Department. The FBI has identified 40 agents who could do the investigation. "At this point, the attorney general is still considering all of her options. We expect a decision shortly," said Myron Marlin, a department spokesman……"

Washington Times 8/30/99 Joyce Howard Price "…Sen. Charles E. Schumer and Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee, both staunch supporters of Attorney General Janet Reno, yesterday called for an independent investigation of the 1993 government assault on the Branch Davidian compound near Waco, Texas. "The FBI had its chance to do this investigation on its own; they clearly muffed it," Mr. Schumer, New York Democrat, said on NBC's "Meet the Press." "The only way to clear the air is to have an outside investigation."… "We must bring Americans the truth" about what happened in Waco six years ago, Mrs. Jackson-Lee said on CNN's "Late Edition." The two Democrats are part of a growing bipartisan chorus in Congress for an independent probe of the April 19, 1993, siege at the Waco compound, which ended with a fire that killed 86 persons, including 24 children.

Washington Times 8/30/99 Joyce Howard Price "…While Miss Reno insists she was never told pyrotechnic tear-gas canisters would be used by the FBI in the Waco siege, Byron Sage, former FBI supervisory agent who was on the scene in Waco, said yesterday on "Fox News Sunday" it "would have been impossible for someone to use one of those devices without the knowledge and approval of a higher-up." ….Sen. Orrin G. Hatch, Utah Republican and chairman of the Judiciary Committee, told Fox "Janet Reno would have been the one responsible . . . who would have had to have authorized the use of those canisters." "There are a lot of people . . . concerned about whether this has been a big cover-up by the Justice Department and the FBI," he added….."

New York Times 8/30/99 David Stout "….But unlike other lawmakers who have called for inquiries into the matter, Schumer, Democrat of New York, did not imply that there may have been a cover-up in the case…. Autopsies showed that some died from gunshots (which the authorities have said were self-inflicted), others from smoke inhalation or flames. Investigators said an examination of the ashes showed that gasoline, camp-stove fuel and charcoal lighter fluid had been spread through the interior. …. The F.B.I. said last week that internal documents shortly after the Branch Davidian operation mentioned the use of the devices almost in passing. The agency said a closer examination of the paperwork in recent preparation for lawsuits arising from the raid had made it clear that the devices were indeed used….But when asked whether he thought any information was still being withheld, he [Hatch] replied, "My experience with Attorney General Reno is that she never really quite comes out in a forthright way with anything." …."

Newsweek 9/6/99 Michael Isikoff "…A six-year-old case comes alive after agents admit firing incendiary devices at the Branch Davidians The spent shell was sitting in plain sight. Sifting through the scorched rubble after the government's deadly 1993 raid on the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas, a member of the Texas Rangers was surprised to find the 40mm shell lying on the ground. He showed it to an FBI agent supervising the cleanup. "What's this?" the ranger asked, according to a law-enforcement source. "I'll have to get back to you," the G-man answered. The agent never did. But last week the FBI for the first time confirmed what the Texas Ranger had long ago suspected….. Freeh was "incredulous" when he found out, a bureau official said. "He immediately realized the damage this could do to the bureau's credibility," said the official. …..Public Safety Commissioner James Francis seems to have played the pivotal role in forcing the evidence into view. He ordered the rangers to sort through the boxes and report back. Six weeks ago he had his answers. "My God, this is a problem," Francis recalled saying. Not only did the rangers inform him about the incendiary devices, but also reported that a handful of soldiers from the U.S. Army's supersecret Delta Force may have done more than just observe the operation, as had been previously acknowledged -- a discovery that was sure to send conspiracy buffs into a furor. Francis gave the findings to the federal judge presiding over a wrongful-death suit brought against the government by survivors of the siege….."

San Francisco Examiner 8/29/99 Rob Morse "…JANET RENO has promised a thorough investigation of the 1993 FBI assault on the Branch Davidian sect in Waco. All Reno has to do is walk to her local video store and rent a copy of "Waco: The Rules of Engagement." This Oscar and Emmy-nominated documentary was made two years ago, exposing FBI lies about Waco, lies bought by such "liberal" members of Congress as Tom Lantos and Charles Schumer. The first FBI lie in the film is a recording of a negotiator talking to a child. "Are you going to come in and kill me?" asks the child….The documentary has everything in it you've read recently about Waco except the involvement of the Army's Delta Force. However, the film's executive producer / producer, Dan Gifford, wrote about the Delta Force involvement in June in Skeptic Magazine and on the film web site, waco93.com. Here it is August, and it's just now news. Everyone in the press should rent the film, too…..The documentary features eerie infrared surveillance film showing the muzzle flashes of machine guns fired near tanks crashing into the flimsy Davidian buildings. The scientist who developed the infrared technology for the military identified the flashes as gunfire. Yet FBI officials say they didn't fire a single shot. Well, maybe it was the Delta Force team doing the shooting. But let's not get "conspiratorial." …"

San Francisco Examiner 8/29/99 Rob Morse "…In the film a former Houston fire chief testifies that the FBI created a "pot-bellied stove" by opening up holes in the Davidian buildings. A Dow Chemical fire expert and a former EPA gas expert testify on the flammability of the CS gas, and how it creates hydrogen cyanide when it burns. That's the same stuff used in gas chambers. The film shows a photo of the burned corpse of an 8-year-old, bent backward like a prawn because of muscle contractions characteristic of hydrogen cyanide poisoning. The gas expert says that prisoners condemned to the gas chamber are strapped down so witnesses to the execution don't have to see that kind of death. We all saw the shocking execution without trial of that child and the 75 others. The trouble is, we haven't been shocked enough…..

San Francisco Examiner 8/29/99 Rob Morse "…Never mind that FBI agents were mooning those in the compound and giving them the finger. We see agents burying a dead sect member outside his family's windows. Later the FBI drove tanks back and forth over the grave, according to Davidian survivor Clive Doyle…..After the building and the people in it are turned to cinders, you see the ATF flag run up the flagpole, as if it was a military victory. So it goes in a land where police agencies have been militarized…."

Associated Press 8/29/99 Jim Abrams "…. Two former FBI officials involved in the Waco operation said they were certain their agents did not cause the fatal fire and blamed the confusion on a bureaucratic foul-up. There was a reference to the pyrotechnic grenades in the volumes of official documents produced after the 51-day siege, but ``in some ways we are so bureaucratic I think it can get lost in the recesses of the agency,'' Bob Ricks, FBI spokesman during the WACO siege, said on ABC's ``This Week.'' ``This was not a cover-up, this was not any grand conspiracy or anything else. What it was a very glaring oversight,'' Byron Sage, the FBI's chief Waco hostage negotiator, said on NBC. Sage and Ricks also played down disclosures that officers from the Army's secretive Delta Force anti-terror unit were on the scene at Waco. Sage said two to four Delta Force officers were present from time to time, but only as observers and advisers. He said the FBI hostage and rescue team has long trained and exchanged information with the military. Branch Davidian family attorney Michael Caddell said on ABC, however, that a Delta Force presence at a police operation violates the law. He also said a court hearing two years ago alluded to puffs of smoke around the underground bunker. ``Somebody was involved in a cover-up,'' he said…."

Drudge 8/29/99 "…"Let's look at the chain of command in the series of events on April the 29th," McNulty said during an interview aired this weekend on FOX NEWS CHANNEL's DRUDGE. "And the trail goes from Waco to the Justice Department. Well, actually, first to the FBI headquarters, and then from there, across the street, literally across the street to the Justice Department into Mr. Web Hubbell's ears and out Mr. Hubbell's mouth to Mr. Foster in the White House. McNulty, whose first film WACO: RULES OF ENGAGEMENT was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature, continued: "And then we find the trail of documents that we'll be talking about more later that leads to one place, and that's the first lady's office." Why would Hillary Rodham Clinton's office have been on the receiving end of documents relating to the Waco siege? What was First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton's role in Waco, if any? McNulty refused to elaborate on his discovery…."

Associated Press 8/29/99 Tom Raum "…Three Army special operations officers were present that final day, April 19, 1993, but they were not involved in the FBI operation in any way, not even in an advisory role, a senior Pentagon officer said Thursday. ……But former CIA officer Gene Cullen told The Dallas Morning News in a copyright story for today's editions that anti-terrorist Delta Force commandos told him detailed accounts of active military involvement as he worked with them on an overseas assignment in 1993. Cullen would not identify the commandos. Federal law prohibits the military from direct involvement in domestic law enforcement unless a presidential waiver is granted. The Pentagon officer said no such waiver was requested in the Waco case because it was not deemed applicable….. Even so, the military did provide a wide variety of support services, including the loan of radios and other communications equipment, tanks, tents, helicopters and, at least in the early stages, some anti-terrorism advice…..James B. Francis Jr., chairman of the Texas Public Safety Commission, said he has been told that evidence in the hands of state law enforcement personnel may support the account given to Cullen….. .Meanwhile, the General Accounting Office issued a report Thursday detailing military assistance provided during the standoff. The military provided ``a wide variety of assistance,'' both to the FBI and to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, totaling about $1 million, the report said. The sum included support from state National Guard units that were later reimbursed by the federal government. The report primarily focused on assistance to the ATF, noting that military personnel were called to the scene after it ``cited possible drug-related activity at the compound.''…. "

FoxNews Drudge Report 8/29/99 Transcript "…MCNULTY: ….You know, Matt, one thing I should probably point out to you is the fact that I'm very disturbed about Ms. Reno's reaction of not knowing anything about this. You see, we sent the Justice Department -- and hopefully it would go to Ms. Reno unless they're keeping her in a closet somewhere in the basement -- a package of material that detailed with photographs and videotape and documents not unlike some of the material I've sent you recently. This letter and all the materials went to the Justice Department on November the 30th, 1998. I gave them all the advance opportunity they could hope for, and then after that, I get a response back, I think it was sometime earlier this year, that, oh, we had not filed under the proper aegis of BOYA (ph), and so therefore, they weren't going to respond. Well, OK….. DRUDGE: I agree, I agree. OK, so if it doesn't link directly to Hillary, it certainly links to Web Hubbell. This memo that is published or excerpts in the "Atlanta Journal Constitution" on Saturday says Web Hubbell was in on one of the meetings that we created with the Delta Force and their involvement. If Web Hubbell knew, did Vince Foster know? Was there a memo trail? Were that some of the documents released or taken out of Vince Foster's office, for example? Are you anywhere following this trail? MCNULTY: Well, Matthew, the fact is is that we do deal with the chain of command in the series of events [on April the 19th.] And the trail goes from Waco to the Justice Department. Well, actually, first to the FBI SIYAC (ph) headquarters, and then from there, across the street, literally across the street to the Justice Department into Mr. Web Hubbell's ears and out Mr. Hubbell's mouth to Mr. Foster in the White House. And then we find the trail of documents that we'll be talking about more later that leads to one place, and that's the first lady's office….. "

FoxNews Drudge Report 8/29/99 Transcript "…MCNULTY: At the base of that tower was the old church records vault, a square, concrete, steel-reinforced structure that was about six to eight inches thick. And it was underneath the four-story tower there in the middle of the compound. Now we see it again. DRUDGE: Now I don't know what we're seeing. It looks like we are seeing the... MCNULTY: OK, well, what we're seeing is we're seeing the vault after the fire and the building is removed, is burned away, OK? DRUDGE: OK. MCNULTY: Now you'll see on the ground, the arrow's pointing to a propane bottle, a big one. DRUDGE: I see. MCNULTY: All right, it's about 1,500 gallons. Up above the arrow, you see a white area. DRUDGE: Yeah. MCNULTY: In the white area -- I'm not sure that your viewers can see it on TV, but there is a smaller cylinder on the ground just to the left of the wall of the building. And that cylinder was a hundred- gallon propane bottle that burst, it ruptured. And I don't know if you have the footage queued up of the explosion, but it would be a good time to run it if you did…."

FoxNews Drudge Report 8/29/99 Transcript "…DRUDGE: What's this, what's this final shot we're seeing? What is this... MCNULTY: OK, OK, that projectile is the one that's caused all of the stir, all right? It is basically the 40 millimeter CS gas projectile that brought about all of this stir, OK? That one is the... DRUDGE: That's it. That's the one Reno didn't know about until Thursday morning. MCNULTY: Well, actually, you know what's amazing about this is that's one of two, now we're told, by Danny Coulson. We only knew about one, but Danny volunteered, "Oh, no, there were two fired." Now let's not get confused here, folks. The FBI and the Justice Department wants us to think that somehow, "Oh, well, it's OK. We just fired these two projectiles and it's all right, because they didn't start the fire." Well, that's true. We never said they started the fire. But what they haven't answered is questions about other devices that were found in the rubble at the points of origin of the fire like this. This is a Deb Tech (ph) number 25 flash bang device, and that... MCNULTY: It's a U.S. military projectile. It's a 40 millimeter XM651 E2 (ph), all right? And what it does is it fires, it goes through certain walls, doors, and windows. And then at a certain point in time on a time-fuse delay, it starts burning inside... DRUDGE: OK. projectile there. And that smoke carries CS gas. Now when it burns, Matt, it burns -- It'll put out about an 18 to 24-inch flame out the bottom of the projectile, and they're known as fire starters…."

FoxNews Drudge Report 8/29/99 Transcript "…DRUDGE: ….The Delta Force, McNulty is another aspect to this story I find very curious. First, the Delta Force doesn't even exist. Second, they were not there. Thirdly, they were just watching. Now we learn from the "Atlanta Journal Constitution" that they advised Reno to use that CS gas. Where in the world is this Delta Force tail leading, in your opinion, McNulty? MCNULTY: Well, in our new film, "Waco, New Revelation," we're going to show you videotape that we recovered from the evidence locker in Austin, Texas. And that videotape is going to show you the hostage - - FBI hostage rescue team members and the Delta Force members that were present that day in action at the back of the building earlier before the fire started and after the fire started burning. And what was their presence about? Well, I guess the important thing to understand here is, first of all, if you go to the government and say, "Delta Force"...

FoxNews Drudge Report 8/29/99 Transcript "…QUESTION: Janet, I mean, are you embarrassed at all? I mean you guys have had the evidence for six years, and then the Texas Rangers and a documentary filmmaker come in -- I don't know how long these guys have been working on the film, but probably months, maybe a year, and they come in and they discover evidence that the FBI didn't discover in six years after a massive investigation and massive media coverage. RENO: I'm not embarrassed. I'm very, very upset…."

FoxNews Drudge Report 8/29/99 Transcript "…HARDY: Well, mostly it takes a very long time. I believe Mike year and a half or two years ago. So I did that, and that was first a broad sweep, anything relating to your guys at Waco. And after about six months, we got the documents from them. With ATF and FBI, they've been much more resistant. We had to pry them out one piece at a time generally by getting a court order, usually after they lied about their existence in the first place. They just denied that anything existed. ATF has admitted that they had three or four official agency video cameras pointed at the front door of that building when the first day's raid went down, and they claim they can't find a single tape from any one of them. DRUDGE: Oh, that's always the song. HARDY: Yeah…."

FoxNews Drudge Report 8/29/99 Transcript "…DRUDGE: Has Governor Bush of Texas been of any assistance to you and your efforts? HARDY: I regret I'm not really on a talking basis with him. I wouldn't mind if I was. I hope that he's playing some role with the Texas Rangers, but I wouldn't actually know. DRUDGE: Well, there is a theory in Washington, especially coming from critters in the White House, that Bush is orchestrating this since it is date line Texas, but I don't have any info on that. That's just theory…."

FoxNews Drudge Report 8/29/99 Transcript "…HARDY: The legal trail I think we're still pushing. Mike discovered two rooms full of evidence with the Texas Rangers that has request both to the Texas Rangers and to the federal agencies, and the Texas Rangers were forbidden by the federal agencies to give out the documents. But when I asked the federal agencies to relinquish control under the Freedom of Information Act, they responded they didn't know anything about these documents, they weren't theirs, and they couldn't authorize anybody. DRUDGE: Well, come on. It sounds like we should be running the laugh track. If they're going to continue to stonewall you after the recent revelations, when judgment day comes, these people are going to have some answers that aren't going to quite be satisfactory, quite frankly…."

Washington Times 8/31/99 Jerry Seper "…House committee yesterday issued subpoenas in an expanding investigation of the 1993 assault on the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas. Investigators are focusing again on the role federal agents and U.S. military units took in the raid. In addition to seeking information on the FBI's use of incendiary devices, which the FBI now admits, House investigators have targeted the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) agents in its preparation for a failed attempt to arrest Davidian leader David Koresh seven weeks before the compound exploded in a fireball on April 19, 1993. Investigators want additional information on training sessions ATF agents requested and received from U.S. Special Forces soldiers in the weeks leading up to the February raid. Capitol Hill sources say investigators want information about the suspected misuse of a Texas National Guard helicopter as a diversion during an earlier failed arrest attempt Feb. 28, 1993 -- during which four ATF agents were killed…."


8/31/99 Freeper oldironsides "…All one has to do is look at the tanks moving toward the buildings with the American flag flying off it and the fatigue outfitted individual riding it. The camera focuses on a bed sheet hanging from a second story window with the words Rodney King we know how you feel (not an exact quote) …"

Wall Street Journal 8/31/99 Alan Stone "…In the wake of the conflagration at the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas, the Justice Department assembled a panel of 10 experts in religion, law enforcement, counterterrorism and psychiatry to make recommendations about how to deal with future Wacos. At our first meeting, on July 1, 1993, we discovered that Justice had no intention of telling us what had actually happened during the first raid, by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, the subsequent FBI siege and the final tank/gas assault that sparked the inferno in which some 75 people died, among them at least 20 children. The Justice Department's investigation was still under way, and the panelists were told that questions about what actually happened were out of order. Justice officials did tell us they had convincing evidence that the Branch Davidians had killed themselves, and they expected the panel to make that the premise of our report. The other panelists accepted the Justice Department's rules. I could not….. I made this position clear in a preliminary memorandum to the Justice Department outlining all of the questions that needed answers. There was no response or acknowledgement; in fact it seemed I had been dropped from the Justice Department's panel without notice. Eventually it was agreed that I would submit my report at a later date after being given the opportunity to read the factual investigation and to ask follow up questions…… When I asked a senior Justice Department official why he had not inquired about an obvious discrepancy his investigation of the FBI had turned up, he said he did not believe that was his job. Apparently no one had asked the hard questions. The supposedly independent evaluation, led by Edward Dennis Jr., concluded that the operation was a success but all the patients died…… Because the Justice Department's published investigation was so inadequate, I sent a copy of my preliminary memorandum to the newly appointed director of the FBI, Louis B. Freeh, hoping to break through the stonewall. Soon the crucial FBI actors were phoning me with some of the candid answers that allowed me to write my critical report. It was obvious then, as it is today, that the Justice Department never carried out the thorough investigation the American people were promised. Six years after Waco and four years after Oklahoma City, Americans are still learning about lying, overreacting, bad judgement, lawbreaking and more….. I do not know whether the FBI's pyrotechnic devices, which the bureau has finally acknowledged, actually started the fire. I do know that much of the gas was aimed at the so-called bunker where most of the children suffocated. I do not know whether Delta Force military advisers drove the tanks; I do know that the tank drivers departed from the agreed-upon plan and, for reasons never explained, started crushing the compound. As in Vietnam, the government decided to destroy the village in order to save it…….. But there is one truth that should be obvious by now; the Branch Davidians were more victims than culprits. They are certainly not common criminals, as President Clinton once characterized them. Seven Branch Davidians who survived the final conflagration were charged with violent crimes and are still serving long sentences in federal prisons. Mr. Clinton should pardon them….."


Washington Times 8/31/99 Wesley Pruden "…What happened at Waco, when power-crazed bureaucrats and out-of-control cops and drug agents eager to demonstrate their he-man conceits couldn't resist playing war against women and children, was an outrage of a size we see only once in a generation. Everyone recognized the outrage at the time, but the lawyers and bureaucrats with the most to lose managed to keep a lid on it…. No one, not even a Democrat, any longer expects anything decent from this president. Even the so-called "Clinton haters," who hate only what Bill Clinton has done to cheapen and disgrace the office Americans have held dearest for two centuries, are resigned to enduring the next 14 months and want only not to be reminded of him…..Janet Reno has become a figure more to be pitied than censured, with her health failing and her authority so diminished that she probably couldn't do anything about it if she wanted to, and there's no evidence that she wants to do more than serve out her term, collect her paycheck and keep her health insurance current. A harsh assessment, but fair, based on the abundant evidence at hand….."

Augusta Chronicle 8/31/99 "…Americans often have short political memories, so many may have forgotten how far out on a limb Attorney General Janet Reno -- and her Democrat echo chambers in Congress -- climbed to repudiate suggestions that the FBI used incendiary devices on the assault on the Branch Davidian complex in 1993. The conflagration that engulfed the compound near Waco, Texas, killing 76 people was set, or ordered to be set, by cult leader David Koresh. At least that's what Reno purred reassuringly to several congressional inquiries -- and to suggest otherwise was to engage in ``mean-spirited partisanship'' designed to discredit federal law enforcement….. Moreover, the Texas Rangers have developed evidence of more lying. U.S. military personnel were called in, ostensibly only to give expert advice on pyrotechnics…..Reno's duplicity, partisanship and incompetence are so stark that even her congressional allies are calling for her to step aside now in favor of an independent investigation. Given her past record of obfuscation and cover-up of controversies like unlawful White House fund-raising and misuse of FBI files, that excellent advice must be heeded. Of course, an independent investigation still falls far short of what the occasion really calls for: Firing the worst attorney general the nation has ever had…."

The Dallas Morning News 8/31/99 Lee Hancock "…Mr. Johnston said he was presented with a copy of the document last week after officials divulged that the FBI had, in fact, used pyrotechnic tear gas on April 19. A former senior FBI official told The Dallas Morning News that he had learned that two M651 CS tear-gas grenades had been fired at an area adjacent to the compound by members of the FBI's hostage rescue team. The official has maintained that use of the grenades had nothing to do with the fire that consumed the compound…… On Monday, the House Government Reform Committee issued subpoenas for Mr. Johnston and the Texas Rangers ordering them to present all their records concerning the use of pyrotechnic tear gas by the FBI. The subpoenas ordered the prosecutor and the Rangers to appear on Sept. 7 in Washington. Mr. Johnston has been assisting the Rangers since late June in an ongoing inquiry to identify questioned evidence that has been in the possession of the Texas Department of Public Safety since the Branch Davidian standoff. ….. "If the lawyers in this case knew about that information and, in the face of our evidence showing pyrotechnics were used, just sat on this and continued to insist to the judge that no pyrotechnics were used, that's fraud on the court," Mr. Phillips said. "That's something that we were entitled to and should have been given access to long ago." …..

The Dallas Morning News 8/31/99 Lee Hancock "…Tim Evans, a Fort Worth attorney who defended one of the Branch Davidians in the 1994 criminal trial arising from the Waco standoff, expressed outrage Monday that the document seen by Mr. Johnston was never disclosed by federal prosecutors. "The credibility of the federal agents was extremely important to the government's case in many issues, not just this. This succession of lies would have destroyed their credibility," Mr. Evans said. "Their lies have infected this case like maggots. Yet incredibly they still want us to pick out the maggots and swallow the rest of their story. I think America is about to choke." …….

The Dallas Morning News 8/31/99 Lee Hancock "…Mr. Johnston said he has been ordered not to discuss the specific wording of the document or the handwritten notes. The notes apparently were added after the document was prepared. The document was written by a paralegal working for the U.S. attorney's office in preparation for the 1994 federal prosecution of surviving Branch Davidians. The paralegal was interviewing members of the FBI's hostage rescue team, which was involved in the final assault on the Branch Davidian compound. Mr. Johnston said the document indicates that he may have been present during the interviews. He said he did not recall the interviews and said the term "military gas" did not register with him. "If that document says I was there, then I was there. While I don't recall it, I can say the term 'military gas round' meant little or nothing to me, because I am unfamiliar with military ordnance," he said. "I'll bet that the attorney general would like to have known about these documents long before now, and my letter is an attempt to bring these and other facts to her attention." …..The officials said the memo was written by the FBI's general counsel's office after civil Justice Department lawyers notified them about the 1993 notes and also asked about allegations being raised by the Branch Davidians' lawyers about the use of pyrotechnic devices by the FBI. FBI officials questioned members of the hostage rescue team and then prepared a memo stating that two military gas grenades had been launched about 6 a.m on April 19, six hours before the compound burned, one federal official said.

The Dallas Morning News 8/31/99 Lee Hancock "…The officials said that no one involved in preparing the memo realized that the term "military gas" appeared to be shorthand for pyrotechnic tear-gas grenades. Ordnance experts say all CS tear-gas grenades used by the U.S. military are pyrotechnic devices. The federal officials said that the notes referring to the use of military gas were among thousands of Justice Department documents subpoenaed for 1995 House hearings on the Branch Davidian standoff. One federal official noted that the military jargon used in the note was probably unfamiliar to and overlooked by congressional investigators. Another federal official familiar with the document said it may have been marked with nondisclosure warnings because of an agreement made with Congress prior to the 1995 hearing. "Its release would violate the privacy act, because it included the names of specific individuals," the federal officials said. A spokesman for the House Government Reform Committee said Monday that the panel, which held the 1995 hearing, knew nothing about the documents in question. "We intend to get them, and we will get to the bottom of this," said committee spokesman Mark Corallo….."I am very concerned," Mr. Johnston said. "I would rather not discuss the details of my letter to the AG, but I can certainly tell you that I'm very concerned that information which should've been made known to her and to the public has not been."

CNSNews.Com 8/31/99 Paul Weyrich "…Moreover the Dallas Morning News says it has obtained records under the Freedom of Information Act that the Army's Delta Force special unit was at the scene on April 19th, 1993 when the compound burned to the ground. The FBI has also denied that the Delta Force was present at the sight of the confrontation between the government and David Koresh, the Branch Davidian leader who perished in the fire. How is it that a Texas newspaper could discover what both Houses of Congress could not, namely that the FBI fired pyrotechnic grenades at the time of the siege. Sure, now that the cat is out of the bag, the Congress says it wants to re-open its hearings. Janet Reno says she is very frustrated by this development and will re-open her inquiry as well. Pardon us if we can't help but believe that neither Congress nor Miss Reno will manage to get to the truth regarding Waco….Now that the truth is coming out, who will be fired over this? The last time we checked, several officers who participated in this fiasco and also the one at Ruby Ridge, Idaho had been promoted. Will their promotions be stripped away? Will someone go to jail for contempt of Congress? Don't count on anything to happen. The FBI, Miss Reno and the Congress need some time to get their story straight. Then we will see that all of this is just a semantical misunderstanding. …"

 

WorldNetDaily Betsy Gibson 8/31/99 "…A new memo obtained by WorldNetDaily suggests the FBI deliberately sought to conceal that it had an top military armor expert visit Waco to "assess" the situation, then meet with Attorney General Janet Reno to discuss "tactical contingency plans that may be used to bring the situation in Waco, Texas, to an end." The memo, signed by Michael E. O'Connor, Army Operations Command watch officer, meticulously notes that it is "the Department of Justice thru (sic) the FBI" that has "requested two soldiers by name," and that the loan of the two, Brigadier General Schoomaker and Colonel William "Jerry" Boykin, to the FBI for such a mission has been approved by a General Heldstab. The memo goes on to record that top executive officers, major Army commands such as Three Corps and Force Command and the U.S. Army Special Operations Command were also informed. "The FBI," the memo states, "will handle travel arrangements." According to WorldNetDaily's Special Forces source, it is a revealing break in protocol to have such military officers transported by the FBI. More properly they would travel by military or civilian aircraft..

WorldNetDaily Betsy Gibson 8/31/99 "…WorldNetDaily's source believes that the military author of the memo, O'Connor, might have been registering his queasiness with the break in protocol represented by the FBI by adding a note on the bottom to Major Wells that says "BG Shoomaker (sic) told my watch NCO (SFC Savage) that the FBI plans to pick him at Fort Hood and fly him first to Waco to assess the situation, and then on to Washington. He was not sure if MG Heldstab was aware of those plans when he approved the mission. Just wanted you to be current!" In the opinion of WorldNetDaily's military source it is telling that in the five years since the two officers in the memo met with Reno about Waco, they have, between them, collected six stars -- a nearly unprecedented rate of advancement. Boykin, then a colonel has gained three stars to become a lieutenant general in command of the U.S. Army Special Operations Command, and Schoomaker, then a brigadier general, quickly gained three stars to become commander in chief of the United States Special Operations Command, the ultimate leader of all Special Forces units, Ranger units, Air Force Special Operations wings and all Navy Seals, making him arguably one of the most powerful men in the military, after the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette 8/31/99 Patrick Howe "…Congress should begin an independent investigation into federal agents' use of incendiary tear gas canisters during the last day of their 1993 standoff with the Branch Davidian cult in Waco, Texas, Rep. Asa Hutchinson, R-Ark., said Monday…Hutchinson, a former U.S. attorney who sits on a committee that will be revisiting the issue, said an independent investigation is the best way to quell questions that have helped militia groups use Waco to recruit members. "History tells us that paramilitary, violent groups use this type of federal heavy-handedness and bungling to rouse their troops and take further violent action against authority," Hutchinson said. "That's illustrated by the Oklahoma City bombing and the motivations of Timothy McVeigh." ….. Hutchinson gained statewide fame in 1985 during a Waco-like standoff with members of a white-supremacist group in Northwest Arkansas. As U.S. attorney for the Western District of Arkansas in 1985, Hutchinson helped negotiate an end to a tense standoff between the federal government and the group, The Covenant, The Sword, and The Arm of The Lord. He later led a successful prosecution of the group's leaders on racketeering charges…."

 

MSNBC John Fund 8/30/99 "…..THERE IS RARE AGREEMENT across ideological lines that something very wrong happened at Waco, and that truth deferred for six years is better than the truth denied forever. Patience with Attorney General Janet Reno has worn out. "She should pay the price for what has been discovered," says liberal columnist Margaret Carlson of Time. "The FBI had its chance to do this investigation on their own; they clearly muffed it," says New York Democratic Sen. Charles Schumer. "The only way to clear the air is to have an outside investigation." …..It wasn’t so long ago that Schumer blindly defended the government’s handling of the Waco tragedy, in which some 80 people died, including more than a dozen children under the age of 10…… The final truth about Waco may be even more disturbing than the possibility that pyrotechnic devices could have led to the final blaze that engulfed the compound. In their Academy Award- nominated film, "Waco: The Rules of Engagement," filmmakers Mike McNulty and Dan Gifford suggested that government armored vehicles and elite troops fired into the compound before the blaze. The government’s own infrared image photography shows what appears to be an armored vehicle firing its cannon into the back of the compound just before fire engulfs it. Edward Allard, former supervisor of the Pentagon’s night vision laboratory, also claims the infrared imagery picks up flashes from small arms fire directed at the Koresh compound. In his new film, "Waco: A New Revelation," McNulty claims to have unearthed videotape showing an FBI helicopter firing into the compound along with evidence that 13 members of the Army’s Delta Force were deployed at the rear of the compound. ….If true, laws were broken. James Francis, the head of the Texas Rangers, points out that an 1878 law called "Posse Comitatus" severely restricts the use of the military in domestic disputes without presidential authorization. None was given at Waco. An inventory by Francis and his Texas Rangers of the lockers holding the remaining Waco evidence led Francis to ask federal Judge Walter Smith of Waco to take control of the material to ensure its safe-keeping. "Our only wish is for the truth and the facts to be fully aired," says Francis. "Let the chips fall where they may." Those are commendable sentiments, with the major difference after six years being that it’s now not just so-called "eccentrics" and "extremists" leading the fight for the truth to come out. The parade now includes many liberals and government officials who are tired of having the rug pulled out from under them by the Reno Justice Department….."

Washington Times 8/31/99 Editorial "…


Six years ago, the author of the Justice Department's Waco review, Edward Dennis Jr., said his work led him to conclude that there was "no place" for fault or blame at the agency. True, "mistakes were made," he said in a particularly infamous use of the passive voice, but he carefully did not say who made them. Apparently he didn't even have all the facts…… The revelations leading to Miss Reno's current discomfort have to do with the news that the FBI actually lobbed military-style incendiary devices at the Branch Davidians that last terrible day, April 19, 1993. The agency says not to worry: It fired the devices away from the building hours before it caught fire; so the FBI isn't to blame. Perhaps not, but the news spurs still more questions. Who, for example, authorized the use of military devices in a domestic law-enforcement rather than wartime setting? What else, moreover, has the FBI seen fit to neglect to mention after all these years? A lot, if one is to believe Michael McNulty, producer of a documentary on Waco that was nominated for an Academy Award. In a CNN interview with Rowland Evans and Robert Novak, Mr. McNulty said he agreed that the controversial incendiary devices now in the news probably did not have anything to do with the fire. "However," he said, "what they're not talking about is the pyrotechnic devices that were found at the points of origin of the fire in the rubble of the building after the fire. What they're not talking about is the other types of 40-millimeter munitions that were also found in the aftermath of the fire that definitely were pyrotechnic, and possibly more than that." He added that there is evidence of a gun battle behind the building between the Branch Davidians and members of the FBI and Delta Force, an elite military group….."

 

USA Today 8/31/99 Editorial "…Little is more incendiary than a member of Congress who feels he has been misled -- unless it's a law enforcement agency that fans conspiracy theories through incompetence. The two are feeding off each other this week in the wake of the FBI's admission that agents fired explosive tear gas on the tragic last day of the 51-day siege of the Branch Davidian compound near Waco, Texas, six years ago…..More than 70 charred bodies, including those of more than 20 children, were pulled from the smoldering rubble at Waco, a cataclysm Timothy McVeigh said inspired him to kill 168 people in the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing. So, the question of what caused the fire has always been sensitive, and paramount….. In the aftermath of a 1992 calamity in Ruby Ridge , Idaho, where agents shot and killed a separatist's wife and son, documents showing who approved an order to "shoot on sight" were destroyed. In other high-profile cases, FBI lab technicians were found to have shaded evidence for the prosecution. And in the Atlanta Olympic Park bombing, agents wrongly identified Richard Jewell as the likely culprit. …."

CNN AllPolitics 8/31/99 Chris Plante "…Just days before the fiery end to the Waco standoff, top Army Special Forces officials were asked to offer their views of an FBI assault plan for the Branch Davidian compound but refused to do so, CNN has learned. The meeting, held on April 14, 1993 at FBI headquarters, was called at the request of the Justice Department and attended by Attorney General Janet Reno and top FBI officials. According to a once-secret Army memo, Gen. Peter Jan Schoomaker, who was in charge of a special forces unit at the time, declined to provide an assessment of the FBI plan for the siege of the compound….. "This was not a military operation and could not be assessed as such," Schoomaker, a career special forces soldier, wrote in the memo describing the meeting. "We explained that the situation was not one that we had ever encountered and that the Rules of Engagement for the FBI were substantially different than for a military operation." One of the soldiers told the Justice Department officials in attendance: "We can't grade your paper," according to the memo. Experts in hostage missions attended meeting Two senior U.S. Army special forces soldiers attended the meeting, including Schoomaker and Major Gen. (then Colonel) William Boykin. Both men are considered experts in hostage rescue missions. There was a third soldier at the meeting; a U.S. Army major assigned to the Army Deputy Chief of Staff's Operations section. The major's name was apparently never noted in the U.S. Army memo regarding the meeting. The names of Schoomaker and Boykin initially were redacted from the once secret memo outlining the substance of the meeting….. "

8/31/99 Progressive Revew Sam Smith "….... When Hillary Rodham Clinton's third and final choice for Attorney General was put in place, Janet Reno soon discovered the A.G. de facto was Mrs. Clinton's Arkansas law partner, Webster Hubbell: in the aftermath of the Branch Davidian disaster in Waco, Tex., it was the trusted Associate Attorney General Hubbell, not Reno, whom the White House consulted. The moment that revealed the distance between the third-choice A.G. and the President came when she told Tom Brokaw she was unable to talk to Bill Clinton immediately after the suicidal fire; instead, Webb Hubbell was the point of contact. -- William Safire, New York Times, June 20, 1993 …"

8/31/99 Progressive Revew Sam Smith "….... Hubbell clearly is the chief link between Justice and the White House. He was in constant contact with Foster on Apr. 19, during the fiery end of the Waco crisis. And his ties with the other Rose alumni run deep. Hubbell, Foster, and Hillary -- all commercial litigators -- lunched together regularly, shared an avid interest in politics, and once invested their bonuses together in an unsuccessful partnership. Foster, 48, often covered for Clinton when she campaigned for her husband .... Those who know the Rose alumni say they're unlikely to abuse their new power." -- Business Week, May 24, 1993 …."

Dallas Morning News via Knight-Ridder newswire 8/30/99 Lee Hancock "…A Waco federal prosecutor wrote Attorney General Janet Reno on Monday to warn that ``individuals or components within the Department of Justice'' may have long withheld evidence from her and the public about the FBI's use of pyrotechnic grenades on the day the Branch Davidian compound burned. Assistant U.S. Attorney Bill Johnston said he felt compelled to warn Reno after he was given a 5-year-old document that discusses the use of ``military gas'' by the FBI on April 19, 1993. He said he was concerned because the document, a three-page set of notes detailing an interview with members of the FBI's hostage rescue team, included handwritten notations suggesting that it be kept from anyone outside the department's legal staff. ``There are handwritten notes on the documents discussing whether or not they should be disclosed, and, obviously, they have not been,'' said Johnston, the federal prosecutor involved longest in the entire Branch Davidian investigation…."

Investor's Business Daily 8/31/99 "…..Further, government records indicate the Special Forces Operations Command at a Florida Air Force base helped the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms and Tobacco prepare for the raid with technical and equipment support, the News reported….. Well, no abuse - short of murder - dished out by the Davidians can be compared to the children's fiery deaths, no matter if they were killed by the government or the Davidians. (Does anyone really believe they would be dead today if the government had left the Davidians alone?) As for the weapons, some were found. But does their mere presence justify the force that was used? To our knowledge, the weapons had never been used to commit crimes. Due process, as well as reason, should have compelled the government to handle possible federal firearms violations in some other way…"

8/30/99 Andrew Guthrie Voice of America "…Somehow during the assault, the buildings caught on fire and burned to the ground, killing almost everyone inside. The government was blamed for setting the fire, and for not having fire trucks on hand to put it out…. …..In California, The Los Angeles Times runs this commentary on the Op Ed page by Leon Whiteson, an author who was co-written a book on the tragedy soon to be published. He says in part: There has never been any valid evidence to support the FBI's false claim that the occupants of Mount Carmel set their home ablaze to accomplish some biblical apotheosis. In truth, the FBI injected huge amounts of a highly flammable form of tear gas into the Davidians' flimsy structure for six hours on a windy day in the flat Texas plains, effectively transforming the building into a giant pot-bellied stove needing no more than a spark to ignite. The bottom line is that a peaceful if eccentric community of religious folk with no political agenda whatsoever has, since its brutal destruction, become an icon for right-wing wackos [Editors: slang for mentally unstable individuals.] ….And Little Rock's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette sneers: Now our attorney general says she is determined to get to "the truth" about what happened that terrible day at Waco, but will the truth she comes up with be any more reliable than the truth she swore she was telling before? …."

Associated Press 8/30/99 Michelle Mittelstadt "…The House Government Reform Committee subpoenaed the Texas Rangers, which has tons of evidence sifted from the charred remains of the Davidians' compound. Also subpoenaed was an assistant U.S. attorney in Waco who prosecuted criminal cases against surviving Davidian members…..Burton, whose committee will hold hearings in the fall, sent two investigators to Austin last week to review evidence. Monday's subpoenas will be followed by others, including to agencies involved in the siege, said committee spokesman Mark Corallo. Among them is the Defense Department, whose secretive Delta Force had members at the scene - a point of controversy for some who contend the military played more than an observer's role. Only under tightly proscribed rules is the military allowed to participate in domestic law enforcement operations…. The subpoena to the Texas Rangers seeks all documents relating to the use of the pyrotechnic tear gas devices as well as the Rangers' final report on the incident, Corallo said. The information requested must be provided by Sept. 7. Tela Mange, a spokeswoman for the Texas Department of Public Safety, which oversees the Rangers, said the report should be completed soon. Copies will be provided to congressional committees and the U.S. attorney in Waco, she said…."

http://cnn.com/ALLPOLITICS/stories/1999/08/30/fbi.waco/ 8/30/99 "…"I want to find out if Janet Reno and the Justice Department hierarchy knew about it and if they did and kept a lid on it, why did they do that? And if they didn't know about it, why didn't they do a thorough investigation?" Burton said Monday. The Texas Rangers have been reviewing the FBI's role in the operation and have finished an as-yet-unreleased report on the confrontation. Burton has also subpoenaed Bill Johnston, an assistant U.S. attorney in Texas, who worked on the Texas Rangers' inquiry. The Government Reform Committee, as early as Tuesday or Wednesday, also will subpoena the FBI, the Justice Department and the Department of Defense for all documents relating to use of pyrotechnic devices and the role of Delta Forces during the standoff, sources tell CNN. …."It was just a terribly botched, miserable, wretched thing," Hatch said of the Waco assault. "We've got to get to the facts." …..There was a reference to the pyrotechnic grenades in the volumes of official documents produced after the 51-day siege, but "in some ways we are so bureaucratic I think it can get lost in the recesses of the agency," Bob Ricks, FBI spokesman during the Waco siege, said on ABC's "This Week." …..Sage said two to four Delta Force officers were present from time to time, but only as observers and advisers. He said the FBI hostage and rescue team has long trained and exchanged information with the military. Branch Davidian family attorney Michael Caddell said on ABC, however, that a Delta Force presence at a police operation violates the law. He also said a court hearing two years ago alluded to puffs of smoke around the underground bunker. "Somebody was involved in a cover-up," he said….."

 

The Dallas Morning News 9/1/99 Lee Hancock "…U.S. Justice Department lawyers on Tuesday challenged a federal judge's authority to take control of evidence in the Branch Davidian case, setting up a high-stakes legal showdown. An Aug. 9 order in which U.S. District Judge Walter Smith demanded custody of all documents and other evidence is without any legal basis under federal or civil court rules, Justice Department lawyers argued in a 19-page motion. The judge's move "threatens a wholesale intrusion" into the executive branch and an "unwarranted and substantial burden" on the entire federal government. "It should be plain . . . that separation of powers prevents a federal court from acting as an independent investigator," the motion said. The argument is the latest development in an escalating skirmish over who will control and investigate the vast array of evidence, documents, photographs and other materials tied to the Branch Davidian standoff. The government's filing came one day after a Waco federal prosecutor warned Attorney General Janet Reno in a letter that lawyers within her department had long withheld evidence that the FBI fired pyrotechnic tear gas within hours before the compound burned. For years, government officials had insisted otherwise…….The Rangers were asked to investigate the criminal violations arising from the standoff and were then asked to keep key evidence from the case after eight Branch Davidians were convicted on charges ranging from manslaughter to weapons violations. The Texas Department of Public Safety filed a motion in July asking Judge Smith to take custody of that evidence. DPS officials said that they wanted the evidence taken off their hands, in part, because they felt that the Justice Department was using them to avoid having to allow public access under federal public records laws. In response, the judge issued his sweeping Aug. 9 order calling on every agency of the federal government to turn over anything even remotely tied to the Waco incident to his district clerk's office…… In Tuesday's motion, Justice Department lawyers argued the order is invalid, in part, because it was issued in the criminal case arising from the Branch Davidian siege - a case which they contend is no longer pending in Judge Smith's court. Much of the evidence covered by the order is exempt from disclosure to plaintiffs in the pending lawsuit because it is the work product of the department's attorneys, the motion argued. Producing it would cripple the government's efforts to prepare for the civil trial, now scheduled to begin in mid-October, and producing other information could even stall the independent and congressional inquiries recently launched over the use of pyrotechnic tear gas, the motion argued. The motion asked the judge to narrow his order to encompass only the evidence being held by DPS. On Tuesday, DPS Commission Chairman James B. Francis Jr. said he was disappointed that in the Justice Department's action. "From what I can understand of the Justice's Department's motion today, they're still attempting to prevent the evidence from being judicially reviewed," Mr. Francis said. "And I think that is most unfortunate." …"

The Dallas Morning News 9/1/99 Lee Hancock "…On Tuesday, the federal prosecutor, Bill Johnston, told The Dallas Morning News that he felt compelled to go public with his warning after being given a 5-year-old document that discusses the use of "military gas" by the FBI on April 19, 1993. He said he was concerned because the document, a three-page set of notes detailing an interview with members of the FBI's hostage rescue team, included handwritten notations suggesting that it be kept from anyone outside the department's legal staff. He said both the language in those nondisclosure notations and typewritten identification lines on the top of each page indicated that they were sent from the department's civil torts section, which is defending a massive wrongful-death lawsuit arising from the standoff……..Mr. Johnston, 40, said he decided to speak publicly after learning that federal officials in Washington were discussing the 1993 document with reporters. He noted that he had been expressly ordered not to divulge the document's contents to anyone……..Mr. Johnston said the document suggested that he was present for the 1993 interview in which agents described using "military gas rounds," but he recalled nothing about the interview or the issue. He said civil justice department lawyers involved in the wrongful death lawsuit became furious with him after learning he was present when a filmmaker was allowed to view Branch Davidian evidence at the Texas Department of Public Safety. Mr. Johnston is also assisting an investigation by the Texas Rangers to identify evidence questioned by the filmmaker, Michael McNulty, including a shell casing recently identified as part of a M651 pyrotechnic grenade fired by the FBI. Mr. Johnston said he believed the document was unearthed and disseminated by the civil lawyers last week after Ms. Reno was forced to admit that pyrotechnic tear gas was used at Waco. That admission came one day after reports that Texas Rangers were sharing their investigation results with congressional investigators. "It may have been meant as a shot across the bow, some attempt to warn me to stop stirring this up," Mr. Johnston said…… Mr. Johnston's supervisor, U.S. Attorney Bill Blagg of San Antonio, said he was surprised that the Waco prosecutor had chosen to send such a complaint and make it public. Mr. Blagg said the indication in the document that Mr. Johnston was present when an agent discussed using "military rounds" was "a very serious matter" because federal criminal rules require prosecutors to give defense attorneys any evidence that might help a defendant before trial. "I cannot think of a worse thing to be accused of as a U.S. attorney than knowing of favorable evidence and failing to disclose it, and I can't think of a worse thing than the attorney general not knowing for six years what really happened," he said……. Mr. Johnston said Tuesday that he is prepared to do whatever possible to help the Justice Department, the Congress and the public learn the entire truth of what happened. "If there is an issue regarding whether I should've understood the significance of the term 'military gas,' then it is a fair question," he said. "Whatever the truth is, I am not afraid of that." ….He [Burton] voiced concern that officials within the Justice Department may now be targeting Mr. Johnston because of his efforts to help the Texas Rangers and bring out the truth about the government's use of pyrotechnic tear gas at Waco. "I think he should be commended," Mr. Burton said. "Because he has given us information . . . they're going to try to make him a scapegoat."…."

AP 9/1/99 "…A federal judge's authority to take control of evidence from the ruins of the 1993 Branch Davidian inferno is being challenged by the Justice Department. A 19-page motion filed Tuesday by department lawyers contends that U.S. District Judge Walter Smith has no legal basis for an order demanding custody of all documents and other evidence…. The Justice Department motion in Waco said the judge's Aug. 9 order ``threatens a wholesale intrusion'' into the executive branch and an ``unwarranted and substantial burden'' on the entire federal government. ``It should be plain ... that separation of powers prevents a federal court from acting as an independent investigator,'' the motion said. On Monday, a Waco federal prosecutor wrote Reno that lawyers within her department had long withheld evidence that the FBI fired pyrotechnic tear gas within hours of the fatal fire at the compound. The Texas Department of Public Safety had requested that Smith take control of Davidian evidence it was holding for the Justice Department. The DPS said it thought the agency was being used by the federal government to keep the evidence from public inspection ….. Jailed Branch Davidians may seek new trials based on the revelation, the Waco Tribune-Herald reported today. ``If we can get our hands on a piece of evidence proving that something was withheld from us, we'll probably go back into court,'' said attorney Rocket Rosen, who represents Davidians Kevin Whitecliff and Livingstone Fagan. ``I think it's very likely based on what I'm hearing and reading.'' He said defense attorneys may argue their clients are being held illegally because the government failed to disclose its use of incendiary devices…."

Reuters 9/1/99 "…The White House supports an independent investigation of the FBI's siege of the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas, in 1993, an administration official said Wednesday…."

WorldNetDaily.com 9/1/99 Jon Dougherty "…The phrase, "congressional investigation" has become synonymous with the phrase, "We're not going to do anything." After tens of millions of dollars, a cache of smoking guns, admissions of guilt, and persons who have been caught in the act either of lying or committing these felonies, how many serious Clinton administration players have gone to jail? How many have been stripped of their offices? How many have been banished from politics? ….Burton and Co. had people like Bill and Hillary Clinton, Al Gore and Janet Reno dead to rights over the Chinese campaign contribution scandal. They had them dead to rights over the Filegate issue, the Travel Office scandal, the Whitewater affair, and the Interior Department's Indian gambling issue scandal. They know about Ron Brown, Hazel O'Leary, and Bruce Babbitt -- all subjects of very real scandals with very real evidence to support the claims of illegality. But nobody's serving time, except for Brown and Vince Foster -- they're doing "time eternal." For crying out loud -- they've even got Whitewater documents with the First Lady's fingerprints. And they know that, ultimately, this administration is responsible for the greatest theft of nuclear weapons secrets ever in the history of this country. But despite all of these scandals, and despite the fact that few people have paid for these crimes (except the American people in general), all of a sudden we're supposed to believe Dan Burton is serious about "getting to the bottom of this Waco issue?" That's as credible as Janet Reno's announcement that the Justice Department is going to conduct their own internal investigation, or her claims that she knew nothing about the FBI's use of pyrotechnic weapons at Waco. …."

Freeper flamefront 9/1/99 "…Janet Reno should know better about handling CS gas: "In 1956 Janet Reno enrolled at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, where she majored in chemistry" …"

The Dallas Morning News 9/1/99 Lee Hancock "…Lawyers for the Branch Davidians have alleged that the government's negligence and deliberate actions caused the 1993 tragedy. For several years, their pleadings have charged that unidentified projectiles and shell casings found in the compound rubble include pyrotechnic tear gas grenades and incendiary devices…..Federal officials had long denied federal agents used anything capable of sparking a fire on that day. But they conceded last week that at least two pyrotechnic tear gas rounds were fired after a former FBI official told The News that their use in Waco was "common knowledge" among members of the bureau's hostage rescue team…."

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette 9/1/99 Meredith Oakley "…At every turn, we hear of the "breakdown of communication" or the "miscommunication" between the Justice Department and the FBI. (Shades of Chinese espionage at Los Alamos!) No one has lied to anyone, we are assured; people were just "misled" about the circumstances and actions surrounding the government's assault on the Branch Davidian compound near Waco, Texas, in April 1993. "This was not a cover-up," Byron Sage, a retired FBI agent who was the chief hostage negotiator during the seven-week stakeout-cum-siege, said on "Meet the Press" over the weekend. "This was not any grand conspiracy or anything else. What it was was a very glaring oversight." Oh, really? …..Now the truth is beginning to surface, not because the government has been falling all over itself to unearth the truth and present it to us, but because some of the survivors of the Waco inferno and some of the relatives of those who perished filed wrongful-death lawsuits in which the rules of discovery have been engaged. Through this process we have learned what the government will say only "might" have happened: pyrotechnic devices--military-issue grenades containing a form of tear gas that creates lethal hydrogen cyanide when it burns--were, indeed, used by someone outside the compound. I say someone, because it isn't yet clear who. It might have been FBI agents. It might have been agents of the Treasury Department's Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. It might have been members of the U.S. Army's elite Special Forces Operational Detachment-Delta, a.k.a. the Delta Force. Or it might have been all of the above, because all were on-site that fateful day (although to hear them tell it, they were just hanging around the compound looking for something to do)….:"

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette 9/1/99 Meredith Oakley "…….an Army spokesman says Delta Force was only nominally represented on-site, and then only to "observe." An FBI spokesman counters--although he doesn't realize he's countering--that Delta Force officers were on hand "only as occasional observers and advisers" (emphasis supplied). Now a former CIA officer has told The Dallas Morning News about how Delta Force commandoes with whom he worked on an overseas assignment shortly after the Waco conflagration regaled him with detailed accounts of active military involvement in the final assault on the compound…."

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette 9/1/99 Meredith Oakley "…Reno has spouted a lot of bull in her time as attorney general, but she'll have to go a long way to top last week's declaration that she intends to get to the bottom of this scandal--by having the FBI investigate itself. This would be ridiculous if it were not so outrageous. She was present at the 1993 meeting with Delta Force, FBI and other Justice officials, among them Webb Hubbell, at which the incremental use of incendiary tear-gas grenades was discussed at length and in detail. How could she not have known what was in the works? Or was she doing precisely what I accused her of doing at the time--just following orders? …."

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette 9/1/99 Meredith Oakley "…Danny Coulson, a deputy assistant FBI director during the Waco siege, claims that agents did disclose during their post-assault debriefings the use of the pyrotechnic grenades. It's a mystery to him, he says, why that information was not conveyed to high-ranking FBI and Justice officials. As I've noted, we've been fed this "failure to communicate" line before, most recently with regard to the evidence of Chinese espionage at U.S. nuclear weapons laboratories. It is so old and so worn that it is just plumb worn out…."

CNN's Allpolitics.Com Website 9/1/99 "…The chairman of a House panel investigating new disclosures about the 1993 FBI raid on the Branch Davidian compound near Waco, Texas, said Tuesday that he has subpoenaed officials at the White House, the Justice Department, the Defense Department and the CIA…. "Either [Reno] she's incompetent or she's covering for something," Burton said. "I don't see any other answer." …Burton also said he will subpoena members of the military's Delta Force, an elite group of specially trained personnel. Burton questioned why three members of the Delta Force were present on the final day of the siege, when the military is specifically barred from domestic law enforcement unless a presidential waiver is granted. The Defense Department said the soldiers were there in an "observer role" for the FBI and "did not perform law enforcement functions." "We've been told a lot of things about Waco over the last five years, and we're finding out now that a lot of it's not accurate," Burton said…… "

Chuck Baldwin Live 9/1/99 "…All of a sudden everyone in congress and the Justice Department are greatly concerned about what really happened at Waco. Really? Why now? I distinctly remember the hearings that were conducted in congress concerning the Waco matter back in 1995. I sat mesmerized as I watched those hearings on C-Span; most of them tape replays shown well after midnight. I well recall Charles Schumer and the other Democrats on the committee acting like defense lawyers for the government witnesses. They stonewalled, smirked, delayed, postured and pandered for Reno's henchmen. At first, Republicans Bill McCollum and Bill Zeliff, the committee co-chairmen seemed sincere in wanting to get to the truth. I was encouraged. My confidence quickly evaporated as the hearings continued, however. By the end of the hearings, Republicans and Democrats alike sounded a united chorus that the government had done nothing amiss, that there was no conspiracy, no cover-up, and no illegal activity on behalf of the ATF, FBI and other federal agencies involved. Attorney General, Janet Reno, was absolved of any wrongdoing. David Koresh and the other Branch Davidians were painted as evil monsters that, basically, got what they deserved. It was a stunning display of congressional cover-up and cowardice. Now, these same congressmen seem shocked to learn that perhaps those federal agents had lied. Shazaam! Maybe the Feds really did start the fire. Maybe they did hide evidentiary material that would have incriminated them. Maybe they did violate the Constitution and laws of our land. Golly Gee! Let's investigate! Let's conduct more hearings. Let's get the bottom of this. …."

Chuck Baldwin Live 9/1/99 "…Congressmen, while you are at it, let's get the facts about why those Delta force troops and Special Forces troops from England were on hand at Waco. Let's find out why FBI agents were trained by our own Green Berets. Let's get the facts concerning why it was necessary for automatic machine guns to open up on old men, women and children as they fled that inferno? Let's find those steel, front doors that would prove who fired first. And, since you are suddenly energized to seek the truth, let's get the facts about that helicopter that fired a hail of bullets into those buildings. And, why were Army tanks knocking holes in the building, if not to create a tinderbox?….. Why was an ATF raid necessary in the first place? Wasn't it true that David Koresh daily took long jogs alone? Wasn't it true that he often frequented the merchants in Waco and could have been peacefully apprehended at anytime? Isn't it true that shortly before the initial raid David Koresh called the ATF and invited them come out and inspect the weapons that he possessed? Why did the ATF not take him up on his invitation? Isn't it true that the charges of illegal weapons and child abuse were nothing more than a ruse to give the Feds the excuse they wanted in order to justify their illegal and unconstitutional raid? We could go on forever. You get the point……"

Chuck Baldwin Live 9/1/99 "…Before you go to bed tonight remember the names of Chanel Andrade, 1, Daylan Lord Gent, 3, Paiges Gent, 2, Bobbie Lane Koresh, 2, Cyrus Howell, 8, Star Howell, 6, Serenity Sea Jones, 4, Chica Jones, 1, Little One Jones, 1, (They were twins.) Crystal Martinez, 3, Isaiah Martinez, 4, Joseph Martinez, 8, Abigail Martinez, 11, Startle Summers, 1, Hollywood Sylvia, 2, Mayanah Schneider, 2, Melisa Morrison, 8, and newborns Summers and Little (born into the flames as their mothers perished). These are the little children that were burned alive, suffocated or machine-gunned to death in the Waco massacre. Then, go look in the faces of your own children or grandchildren and know that what happened to the Davidian's little children could happen to yours! …"

CNSNews.com 9/1/99 Thomas Jipping "…Once again, the time has come for Attorney General Janet Reno to resign….. all the attorney general can say is that she was misled too. Well, if the top law enforcement official in America, the head of the Justice Department, is nothing more than the rest of us, she should join the rest of us out here in the private sector and let someone who can handle it do the job. I remember the day of the Waco inferno in April 1993. I remember one of the networks asking Reno if she had spoken to the president about the incident. Amazingly, she said that she had not but that Webster Hubbell had done so. Hubbell, now a convicted felon, was then Associate Attorney General, number three on the Justice Department totem pole. He was, however, a close pal of Bill and Hillary. Reno was asked whether she even knew what Hubbell and the president talked about. She did not. That exchange was amazing and very disturbing. It was amazing that the attorney general was simply not involved in such a monumental event that involved federal law enforcement agents. It was disturbing to wonder just who was in charge and what these secret conversations between confidants and cronies were all about….."

New York Times 8/31/99 David Stout "…Freeh wholeheartedly supports an inquiry without involvement of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, a bureau spokesman, Tron Brekke, said on Tuesday evening. "We would welcome a qualified group of independent investigators to do that," Brekke said. Another Justice Department official said Ms. Reno, too, had all but decided that an exhaustive inquiry totally independent of the department was the best way to find out why the use of the incendiary devices, heat-generating tear-gas canisters, at the Federal assault on the compound near Waco, Tex., had been denied for six years….Another signal that the 1993 raid is still an explosive issue in Washington was a statement on Tuesday night that Representative Henry J. Hyde, Republican of Illinois, the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, is weighing a proposal to create a joint House-Senate commission to delve into the episode…… The Justice Department officials, who spoke on the condition that they not be identified, said Freeh and Ms. Reno believed that nothing new would turn up to alter the official conclusions. But the Attorney General and F.B.I. Director are said to be convinced that the crisis of confidence is serious enough that only an outside investigation would be palatable to many who have followed the Branch Davidian case…."

Drudge Report 8/31/99 "…Attorney General Janet Reno and FBI Director Louis Freeh have jointly agreed on calling for of an "outside investigation" into their agencies' failure to disclose the use of incendiary devices during Waco. The move comes one day after a Waco federal prosecutor warned Reno that lawyers within her department had long withheld evidence that the FBI fired pyrotechnic tear gas within hours before the compound burned…."

Editorial Opinion 8/31/99 Ian Goddard "…While the major media is covering Waco, their selection of facts to cover further exposes the major culprits in the Waco cover-up, the media. For six years the major media has spoon-fed the People "federal pabulum" with no regard for the shocking facts known to independent investigators. Observe now that the focus of virtually all major- media reports are two 40-millimeter pyrotechnic projectiles that were fired away from the main building hours before the fire on April 19, 1993. However, the Dallas Morning News article [1] (7/28/99) that triggered the new focus on Waco reported that SIX spent flash-bang grenades, which are also pyrotechnic projectiles, "were recovered from areas of the compound in which the fires broke out" -- areas that the FBI had flooded with potentially flammable agents. [2] Two spent flash bangs were found by Davidians before the April-19th fire, which were left over from the initial attack on February 28, 1993. The Davidians gave one of those two flash bangs to their attorney during the siege and kept the other in the building. [3] This suggests that at least five of the six flash bangs found may have entered the building AFTER Feb 28, which is consistent their being shot into the building on the last day, April 19. So the Big Story is that pyrotechnic devices were found in the areas where the fire started. However, the Big Story in almost all major-media reports is ONLY the two pyrotechnic devices that can NOT be associated with any fires or deaths. Also conspicuously absent from current major-media-news reports is the FLIR video, the main feature of McNulty's award-winning documentary "Waco: The Rules of Engagement." That FLIR video basically proves, according to multiple infrared- imaging experts, that the FBI fired machine guns into the Davidian's home before and as the fire broke out, focusing heavy fire on an area near the bunker where women and children were hiding. Except for one Washington Post report, I've also seen no mention in the major media of the latest footage in McNulty's new documentary that shows apparent machine-gun fire from helicopters down on the occupants of the church on April 19th.[4] …"

World Net Daily 8/31/99 Sarah McCarthy "… Even Lynn Samuels, WABC's super-liberal talk show host, now says she'll stand with Bob Barr and Henry Hyde to impeach this president if it's shown that Bill Clinton knew that incendiary devices were used by government agents at Waco. "This is not an assault," said the voice of a government official at the scene as an M-60 tank tore off the wall of the Branch Davidians' home and shot tear gas in their faces. To protect the 25 children inside from child abuse, U.S. federal agents harassed the Davidians and their children at night with massive floodlights, blaring recordings of screaming, slaughtered rabbits, and loudspeakers blaring Nancy Sinatra singing "These Boots Are Made For Walking." Though allegations of child abuse were never proven, and the Davidians had fewer guns per capita than the average Texan, Janet Reno authorized the agents to saturate the house with CS gas, a gas that is banned by international law as chemical warfare and which medical literature warns may cause children inhaling it "fulminating chemical pneumonia and death." Before ordering the attack, Reno was informed that gas masks wouldn't fit the children……..."

World Net Daily 8/31/99 Sarah McCarthy "… Like the long missing evidence of tear gas canisters, reports the Wall Street Journal, the steel front door of the house that might provide evidence on who shot first is also missing…….For 51 days, FBI agents in Waco repeatedly ignored the advice of their own Behavioral Science Unit that recommended a "soft" approach. Special Agents Pete Smerick and Mark Young wrote a caution on March 5, 1993: "In traditional hostage situations, a strategy which has been successful has been negotiations coupled with ever increasing tactical presence. In this situation, however, it is believed this strategy, if carried to excess, could eventually be counterproductive and could result in loss of life."…."

World Net Daily 8/31/99 Sarah McCarthy "… Nancy T. Ammerman, a visiting scholar at Princeton, also evaluated Waco for the Justice Department, concluding that the government's approach "was based on building up a legal case against the group and planning a paramilitary type assault on the compound. In that atmosphere, I believe, it became easy to lose sight of the human dynamics of the group involved, to plan as if the group were indeed a military target." ……A year after the tragedy, DeGuerin, [Koresh’ attorney] …was still furious over his last meeting prior to the fire with FBI agent Jeffrey Jamar, the agent in charge of the 51 day siege, a meeting at which he had assured the agent that in his best considered judgment the Davidians would voluntarily leave the compound in about two weeks. DeGurein says Jamar assured him that time was not a factor. "None of this had to happen," says DeGuerin…."

World Net Daily 8/31/99 Sarah McCarthy "… "No one stepped forward to be the Davidians' friend," writes Richard Shweder, author of "Thinking Through Cultures," in the New York Times. "The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms spent months planning and rehearsing the largest 'law enforcement' operation of its 200-year history. This turned out to be a major military operation, worthy of a police state, carried out against the domestic residence of an unpopular and readily stigmatized religious community. The ACLU does not like guns, and it's very busy, so it didn't get involved. The religious leaders of our country do not like 'cults,' and the women's movement does not like patriarchal living arrangements, so they didn't much care. And no one wanted to seem sympathetic to 'child abuse' or unsympathetic to the FBI." ….…The Dallas Morning News and WorldNetDaily are reporting, contrary to recent statements by Janet Reno and the Clinton administration, according to classified documents obtained through The Freedom of Information Act as well as WND's sources within the Special Forces, that not only did Reno seek the involvement of the Army's Commando Unit, Delta Force, but she was warned at a meeting she attended with Webster Hubbell and others that the use of CS tear gas could cause "some people to panic. Mothers may run off and leave infants."

World Net Daily 8/31/99 Sarah McCarthy "…Delta Force operators and Task Force 160 operators continually cautioned the FBI against attempting an 'open air assault' on the target, and stated emphatically that they did not want to be involved in firing on or assaulting American civilians." These official and unofficial comments went ignored, says WND, and, in fact, one Special Operations officer was threatened with court-martial if he continued to protest, the source said. At another point in the document, Delta Force personnel explain to Reno that Special Forces encounters are almost always militaristic and involve outright enemies who are often heavily armed……"

Freeper noname 8/31/99 remarks "…Use of military troops against American citizens has precedent. I am an ex Army Officer who served during the Viet Nam era. One of the things I did was to research and make legal the annual military exercise called REFORGER, which sends American troops to foreing soil under certain limited circumstances. I was also involved in the military operations created to quell and control rioting and looting in American cities, which was actively threatened in 1968. Troops from Military posts were tasked with certain citiee, cities from which most of there personnel were not from. Thus, Fort Riley's personnel, who were mostly from Kansas City, were sent to St. Louis rather than their home city. It was expressed that soldiers might be hesitant to fire on their neighbors in their own home towns. This city shifting was done all over the U.S. I know this because I cut the orders, screened the personnel, and ran to the planes as they were taking off to deliver the orders in the middle of the night. Thus the precedent of using National Guard from another State to conduct the WACO operation. The order to do this must have been federally derived to cross state lines……"

CNN 8/31/99 Pierre Thomas "…A source close to Freeh said he wants an outside probe that would operate similar to that of an independent counsel or special prosecutor. The source said the FBI would not protest if Reno designated investigators from another law enforcement agency to look into the matter. If FBI agents were designated to conduct interviews for an outside overseer of the probe, they would report solely to the special investigator, but not to anyone in the FBI leadership. Freeh reportedly wants such safeguards established so no one can accuse the FBI of manipulating the findings, the sources said…..Meanwhile, Justice Department officials acknowledge they have now received a letter from an assistant U.S. attorney in Texas, warning that department officials may have deliberately withheld information from Reno….. "

 

Dallas Morning News 9/2/99 Lee Hancock Cataline Camia "…But Wednesday, officials played a videotape recovered from hostage rescue team headquarters and discovered it contained infrared footage shot between 6 a.m, when the assault began, and about 8 a.m, federal officials said. "The audio part of it captures radio traffic in the background. Part of the radio traffic is the request for and authorization to fire the two military gas rounds," a federal official said. "What's clear is that this is a field command-post decision, a spontaneous decision," the official said…. After agents firing nonpyrotechnic tear gas rounds reported they weren't penetrating a pit adjacent to the compound, the official said, a commander responded that they could try military gas rounds. All tear gas rounds used by the U.S. military are considered pyrotechnic, or capable of sparking fires….. One official said some FBI leaders recognized the voice authorizing the use of the devices as Richard Rogers, who was then commander of the hostage rescue team. Mr. Rogers, who is retired from the bureau, could not be reached for comment Wednesday night. "It's extremely unfortunate that it took six years to locate this tape, but it's very good that it appears to be dispositive of the issue of who authorized this and how the rounds are fired," one official said. There was no indication on the tape that any effort was made to secure permission from superiors in Washington. Attorney General Janet Reno has said she made it clear to the FBI during the siege that no pyrotechnic devices should be used in the final assault…… A documentary on the standoff scheduled for release this month by a Fort Collins, Colo., company includes the infrared and DPS footage. A former Defense Department expert alleges in the film, Waco: A New Revelation, that flashes caught on the videotapes are gunfire directed at the Branch Davidians from FBI helicopters and government personnel. Government officials have vehemently denied that, stating that FBI agents did not fire a single shot during the 51-day siege. The film alleges that gunshots were coming from members of the Army's secret Delta force anti-terrorism unit who were deployed alongside members of the FBI's hostage rescue team…… "

New York Post 9/2/99 Editorial "…


Or, as House Judiciary Committee Chairman Henry Hyde duggested earlier in the week, a congressional commission with full investigative authority, a real budget and a competent staff can be empaneled. Hyde wants to have the majority and the minority leadership in the House and Senate each choose a committee member - most likely not from members of Congress - who in turn would name a fifth person to chair the panel. This makes a good deal of sense. The primary goal should be to get the truth out: Exactly what happened at Waco? Who gave the order to launch the pyrotechnic tear-gas cannisters, and did they spark the subsequent blaze? What was the role of the U.S. military in the affair? Was there a violation of the Posse Comitatus Act? Most importantly, was there a cover-up? And, if so, how far up the chain of command did it go? …."

Toronto Sun 9/2/9 George Jonas "…The problem with the feds isn't what they almost certainly didn't do, i.e., conspire to massacre, or what they may not have done either, such as negligently set buildings ablaze with pyrotechnic tear gas. The problem with Reno and her troops is what they did do, which was to put the prestige of their agencies ahead of the interests of the community they're supposed to serve. Until the bungled Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) raid in February, 1993, cult leader Koresh could have been easily detained when he went about his business outside the compound, as he did from time to time. Instead, the Feds arrogantly stormed a place where children lived with a number of armed and unstable people. Then, 51 days later, they stormed it again. If Reno knew nothing else before she authorized the FBI to move in, she knew the compound had irrational people holding children as hostages. The children were in no imminent danger from Koresh or his followers - certainly none that would remotely compare with the danger of a tear gas assault or a gun battle. Or, as it turned out, incineration. The federal cowboys didn't ask if the children had gas masks. They didn't ask what would happen to them if cult members decided to hold out to the bitter end. The authorities viewed the incident, in the lingo of the FBI agent in charge, as a "barricaded subject" situation. The FBI's objective was to enforce the law and make sure that, unlike their ATF counterparts, they suffered no casualties themselves….."

Washington Post 9/2/99 Edward Walsh and Roberto Suro "…The videotape shot from a surveillance aircraft about 7:30 a.m. on the day of the assault contained audio of radio traffic among Hostage Rescue Team members in which they discussed the firing of nonincendiary tear gas cartridges at the roof of an underground shelter that was several dozen yards away from the compound, the official said. But those cartridges had no effect, and a team member asks a superior for permission to use military tear gas cartridges that are incendiary, the FBI official said. He said that on the tape the superior can be heard "spontaneously" granting permission to do so. ……The discovery of the new evidence clearly exacerbated tensions between the two agencies. Just a week ago, the FBI acknowledged for the first time that it had used the military tear gas, and Reno said the next day she was "very, very upset" by the revelation. . ….In addition, the Justice Department is developing a plan for the field work in the probe to be done not by the FBI but by a team of investigators from agencies such as the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Postal Service, the Secret Service and the Marshals Service…… A law enforcement source confirmed that the FBI has an internal memo dated Feb. 15, 1996, that discusses the use of military tear gas weapons on the day of the final assault. According to one source, the 1996 memo used the word "flammable" in describing the military tear gas cartridges. Another source said the memo does not contain that word but does mention the possibility that such a tear gas cartridge could start a fire. In addition to investigating the use and effect of the incendiary cartridges, officials said the new investigation will focus on who knew about their use and why this was not disclosed until last week. …..


"

AP 9/2/99 Michelle Mittelstadt "… Byron Sage, a retired FBI supervisor who was the agency's chief negotiator with Koresh during the standoff, said today Reno's orders were that incendiary gas not be used against the wooden compound for fear it would cause a fire. ``Those instructions were followed,'' Sage said on ABC's ``Good Morning America.'' Even with the latest disclosures, Sage said, ``The facts have not changed as far as what happened on the 19th of April or on the 51-day effort prior to that. The military (incendiary) rounds that are in question were not directed toward the wooden structure -- that's a central issue that needs to be remembered.'' ….. "

New York Times 9/2/99 David Johnston Neil A Lewis "…The recording, officials said, contains the voices of agents asking for and receiving authorization from their operational commanders at Waco, Tex., to fire inflammable military tear-gas rounds at a covered bunker not far from the main Branch Davidian compound several hours before a deadly fire ignited, leaving about 80 people dead, including many children…… The officials said the extraordinary order for marshals to seize the tapes from the F.B.I. was intended as a harsh rebuke for the bureau's failure to hand over information related to the central issue of who started the deadly fire…… The recording is on the audio track of an infrared videotape that picked up heat images from inside the compound. The tape was made by an aircraft flying over the site at the time the tear-gas canisters were launched at the bunker. Law-enforcement officials said the tape supports their account that the inflammable canisters bounced harmlessly off the bunker's roof and could not have ignited the fire….. At the F.B.I., officials said that they were embarrassed by the discovery, but did not try to conceal it…..

But Democratic officials in Congress today said that they might not support the commission that Hyde is contemplating if Ms. Reno's investigation appears to be credible and sufficient. Julian Epstein, the Democratic staff director of the House Judiciary Committee, said that there would be no need for two competing investigations and the Reno effort should take precedence over any by Congress……A major problem for any new inquiry into Waco, senior law-enforcement officials agree, is that most of the major players are locked into sworn testimony about what happened……


"

WorldNet Daily 9/2/99 Ron Engleman "…What we saw was a scene out of a violent us-versus-them movie. Government agents dressed in black, Nazi style helmets and black ski masks firing semi as well as fully automatic weapons indiscriminately into the side of a building. There were no visible targets, just people with jackets that said "ATF" on the back, hiding behind trucks and cars, shooting into the side of a building as though it were an empty old barn. We were told by a news head that the ATF had come under heavy fire while attempting to serve a search warrant on a heavily armed religious fanatic named Vernon Howell and his cult followers inside a fortified compound. Something didn't seem right to me. The more I watched, the more I questioned. If there is such heavy fire coming from inside, why are some of the ATF agents standing in the open firing into the building? How could they get close enough to put two ladders up against the building and climb onto the roof? ….Something was drastically wrong. Where was this TV footage coming from? How could a TV station have been at Mount Carmel and shot this footage unless they had been alerted? Waco is over an hour south of Dallas. Huh uh, I ain't buying it. There is a skunk in the woodpile. Being a radio talk show host on KGBS Radio in Dallas, I knew then and there that I was going to voice my opinion the next day on the air come hell or high water. And I did…… On separate occasions in the middle of March, two individuals, Jesse Amen and Louis Alaniz somehow got by the FBI guards and made their way to the front door of Mount Carmel. They knocked on the door, it was opened and they were allowed in. Think about that. The Branch Davidians, knowing they were surrounded by heavily armed government agents opened their door and let two strangers inside….."

WorldNet Daily 9/2/99 Ron Engleman "…The day of the fire, I got a call at home at 5 a.m. and was told to turn on the TV, "something big is comin' down." I received another call around 7 a.m. from a person I knew at Parkland Hospital who told me the FBI had called the hospital and inquired as to how many beds were available in the burn unit. Prior to going on the air at 9 a.m. on April 19, I called Parkland Hospital. They denied they had received a call from the FBI. When I went on the air, I expressed my disgust at what was happening. About 15 minutes before my program ended at noon, I said to David, "David, nothing good is going to come of this. I think what you better do is put your hands over your head and walk out of there or you may never get out alive." The last thing I said before going off the air at noon was "Let's pray for the Branch Davidians. Just look what our government is doing to them." Five minutes after going off the air, Mount Carmel burst into flames…..A side note: A month or two after the fire, Parkland Hospital put out a press release stating that the FBI had, in fact, called them very early on the morning of April 19, asking about available beds in their burn unit. The reason for the turnaround? Parkland Hospital had not been paid by the government for their care of those burned in the fire…."

Freeper yaya1123 9/1/99 notes "…I have seen the posts about Hillary's possible involvement, based mostly on the information that she received updates. But, most of the time the siege was going on, she was in Little Rock. Her dad had a stroke and was dying. I can't remember the date of his death. There is much documented proof that Nussbaum, Lindsey, and Foster met with Web Hubbell in the White House. He briefed them on Waco the week before the raid. Clinton was lying when he said he didn't know about the raid until the day before it happened. More interesting info from the Congressional Report. Clinton hired John Podesta for the express purpose of spinning Waco, and one of the lawyers for the obstructionist democrats on the committee was none other than Julian Epstein. …"

On Nightline 9/1/99 Freeper Arator notes "…Did any of you notice FBI Trained Liar Byron Sage's neck tie? The man is a sicko and obviously very proud of his work in Waco, because his necktie had multicolored maps of Texas all over it and on each map was just one star. And guess where that star was located. That's right, WACO! The sick bastard actually owns a Waco tie, and had the gall and arrogance to wear it for a TV interview about the cover-up in WACO! I just thought this little detail added some more insight into the warped minds of the men behind this atrocity…."

Freeper ~Vor~ 9/1/99 continues "…I am currently reading the book, "The Ashes of Waco...An Investigation", by Dick J. Reavis. I looked up Bryon Sage's name in the index and the following is the only mention of him in the entire book: While the tanks were rudely bringing down Mt. Carmel, FBI chief negotiator Bryon Sage and an assistant were attempting to calm those inside. Over the public address system that had earlier given voice to Nancy Sinatra and Alice Cooper, the two were broadcasting a new message. "This is not an assault. This is not an assault," the message said. "We will not be entering the building." Surviving residents say that in making their entries, the tanks knocked over lanterns and cans of fuel, and crushed a pressurized tank filled with liquified propane gas, a volatile heating and cooking fuel. About the time that the fire got under way, transcripts show that the Bureau's broadcasters began to ad-lib, adding to their prepared text exclamations like, "David, you have had your fifteen minutes of fame," and, "Vernon is finished. He's no longer the Messiah!"…"

Drudge (Atlanta Constitution) 9/1/99 "…An unnamed federal court official in Waco tells Thursday's ATLANTA JOURNAL CONSTITUTION that U.S. District Judge Walter Smith Jr. has no intention on holding a hearing on the Justice Department's motion that questions Smith's authority to gain possession of all evidence pertaining toWaco and an ongoing civil lawsuit…."

Freeper gatex 9/2/99 "…Info from today's New York Times ( article starts on front page). "There are miltary guys in body armor and face paint," Mr. Francis said, describing photogarphs from the evidence. "It might be significant evidence when all the facts come out. " (Mr. Francis is Chairman of Dept. of Public Safety.) …"

Newsday James Pinkerton 9/2/99 "…The Waco dissembling began the day of the burning, April 19, 1993, and continues to last week's FBI admission that pyrotechnic devices had actually been used. That very afternoon in 1993, Bill Clinton issued a distant, passive-voiced statement, in which he put the burden of 80 deaths on the shoulders of his new attorney general; subsequently, it was learned that all along the president had been closely monitoring the siege. For her part, Janet Reno accepted the blame-no wonder Clinton liked her. But Reno further demonstrated her team-play potential by piling on a falsehood of her own; the decision to launch the final assault, she said, was motivated by an FBI report that David Koresh and his followers were abusing their children. Those kids, of course, ended up dead, but in spite of her dubious destroy-the-village-in-order-to-save-it logic, Reno was hailed as a hero; only later, did she admit that there was no evidence to substantiate the report of child abuse….."

Newsmax Paul Craig Roberts 9/1/99 "…If Smith permits the evidence to be used in the wrongful death suits brought by relatives of the Waco dead against the federal government, we might eventually find out what really happened. If the meantime readers have asked why federal agents would have killed so many people. The answer might be as follows: For budgetary and public relations reasons, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms needed a PR gimmick. The Branch Davidians were an odd-ball religious group living in a compound, about whom rumors could be spread. One rumor was illegal weapons. Another was child abuse. The ATF obtained a warrant, but instead of knocking on the door and serving it, the agency staged a paramilitary armed attack with TV cameras in tow. The ATF intended to show that it had captured a dangerous group that was armed to the teeth. Thus would the agency endear itself to the public and lawmakers. Instead, the attack was beaten off, with deaths on both sides. The ATF's actions were illegal. (A jury refused to convict the surviving Davidians of homicide.) To cover up the federal agency's abusive use of force, the U.S. Justice Department used the deaths of the ATF agents to bring in the FBI. The FBI, having branched out into counter-terrorism, has a militarized or semi-militarized unit that was itching to try out its new aggressive techniques and show what it could do. This unit got out of control, and the Branch Davidians were gratuitously killed……"

Newsmax Paul Craig Roberts 9/1/99 "…The government got away with it because the Democrats in Congress thought it was more important to protect the new Clinton administration and Janet Reno, the first female attorney general, than to hold the ATF and FBI accountable for the disaster…. The media went along with the cover-up…… If Smith lets the evidence out in the wrongful death suits, be prepared to learn that neither political party can be trusted to protect us against the federal government's unlawful use of deadly force. In the meantime, the best publicly available evidence is the film, "Waco: A New Revelation," which can be obtained from MGA Inc., 1-800-277-9802….."

Drudgereport.Com 9/1/99 "…Late Wednesday, the Justice Department sent federal marshals to the headquarters of the FBI to impound new, previously undisclosed evidence relating to Waco! The evidence includes audio tapes of conversations between agents giving okay to use gas... "

Dallas Morning News 9/2/99 Lee Hancock and Catalina Camia "… The move followed the discovery that the FBI had an audio tape on which a voice of a government agent sought and received permission to fire pyrotechnic military gas rounds near the Davidian compound, a federal official said. Wednesday evening, Justice Department spokesman Myron Marlin confirmed the marshals' action. "Earlier this afternoon, senior Justice Department officials learned from the FBI that the FBI found additional materials in its possession regarding the shooting of the CS military gas rounds on the morning of April 19," said Mr. Marlin. "The FBI, after searching for more information, informed the department that it had come across the additional material at Quantico, Va. "Upon learning of this discovery, the senior Justice Department officials immediately directed the U.S. Marshals Service to take possession of and inventory the materials," he said….."

Dallas Morning News 9/2/99 Lee Hancock and Catalina Camia "… And federal officials said that at least two former Republican senators are among the candidates that Ms. Reno and the Justice Department are considering to lead an independent inquiry of the 1993 incident…. "If the attorney general cannot manage to find and tell the truth about a matter as important as the Waco incident, she should step aside and give someone else a chance," Mr. Gramm told reporters in Irving, after the opening of an anti-drug trafficking facility…..Rep. Pete Sessions, R-Dallas, a former member of the House Government Reform Committee, which has subpoenaed federal records on the issue, said through a spokesman that he also believes Ms. Reno should leave…… A former CIA officer told The Dallas Morning News last week that members of the secret Army anti-terrorist unit known as Delta Force had told him about being actively involved in Waco on the final day of the Branch Davidian tragedy. Department of Defense documents indicate that three Army Special Forces personnel were present, but department spokesmen have vehemently denied that they did more than watch the FBI tank assault…."

Dallas Morning News 9/2/99 Lee Hancock and Catalina Camia "… Mr. Burton said the committee has also called in experts to help analyze infrared video shot by the FBI on April 19 and another videotape shot by Texas Department of Public Safety. A documentary on the standoff scheduled for September release by a Fort Collins, Colo., company includes the infrared and DPS footage. A former Defense Department expert alleges in the film, Waco: A New Revelation , that flashes caught on the videotapes are gunfire directed at the Branch Davidians from FBI helicopters and government personnel….. The film alleges that gunshots were coming from Delta force personnel deployed alongside members of the FBI's hostage rescue team. "What we're going to do is have those tapes analyzed to see if those things occurred," Mr. Burton said……"

Dallas Morning News 9/2/99 Lee Hancock and Catalina Camia "… Mr. Burton said he was pleased that a federal judge in Waco had recently moved to take control of all government evidence relating to the 1993 standoff. On Tuesday, the Justice Department filed a motion asking U.S. District Judge Walter Smith to reconsider, arguing that such a turnover might handicap the wave of new investigations. But Mr. Burton said he supported having a neutral caretaker for the entire body of information on Waco. He noted that his committee has long feuded with Ms. Reno's Justice Department over access to documents and information for other high-profile investigations…. Judge Smith is expected to rule quickly on the Justice Department's motion, which flatly argued that the judge lacked authority for ordering the turnover. Some legal observers say Judge Smith, a no-nonsense jurist who has heard all of the legal actions arising from the Davidian standoff, is not likely to back down. They note that he has a low reversal rate, and his previous order taking control of the evidence made pointed references to intense public interest in the long-controversial incident…."

Drudge 9/1/99 "…A furious Janet Reno ordered federal marshals to the headquarters of the FBI to impound new, previously undisclosed evidence relating to the 1993 Branch Davidian assault near Waco, Texas. As she returned from Panama late Wednesday night, Attorney General Reno expressed total anger over the development while aboard the plane, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned from one eyewitness. "Her face was flushed, she was clearly shaken," the eyewitness told the DRUDGE REPORT. Washington was rocked Wednesday night just hours after federal marshals took custody of infrared tapes recorded during the early morning of April 19 when incendiary tear gas canisters were lobbed at a concrete bunker adjacent to the Branch Davidians' compound. The tapes capture conversation between agents giving the OK to use gas on the compound. The recording contains the voices of agents asking for and receiving authorization from their operational commanders at Waco….."

Drudge 9/1/99 "…"The recording is on the audio track of an infrared videotape that picked up heat images from inside the compound," the NEW YORK TIMES is rushing in a Thursday Page One lead, according to publishing sources. The tape was made by an aircraft flying over the site at the time the tear-gas canisters were launched at the bunker, according to the report…… Former Republican senators John Danforth of Missouri and Warren Rudman of New Hampshire are said to be on Reno's short list of candidates to head a new probe into the events surrounding Waco, the NEW YORK TIMES is reporting…."

Ft. Worth Star-Telegram 9/1/99 Gabrielle Crist "…All the FBI wants Brekke said, is a "full and complete accounting" of the 51-day standoff that ended April 19, 1993 when the Branch Davidian compound near Waco burned to the ground….. In Washington Rep, Henry Hyde chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, was weighing a proposal to create a joint House-Senate commission to delve into the episode. "There's been no final decision on the commission," Sam Stratman, a House Judiciary Committee spokesman, told The New York Times. "We're trying to work our way through this and find some solution that might remove this entire affair from the political fever swamp….. The Texas Rangers have been asked to provide their report concerning the use of the tear gas canisters by September 7. The report will deal mainly with any physical evidence indicating that the pyrotechnic devices were used, Department of Public Safety spokesman Tom Vinger said….."

Associated Press 9/1/99 Michelle Mittelstadt "…Federal marshals were dispatched Wednesday to the FBI's headquarters to impound previously undisclosed evidence in the 1993 assault by federal agents on the Branch Davidian compound, Justice and FBI officials said Wednesday night. The marshals took custody of infrared tapes recorded during the early morning of April 19 when incendiary tear gas canisters were lobbed at a concrete bunker adjacent to the Davidians' compound near Waco, Texas, an FBI source said, speaking on condition of anonymity….. Justice Department officials dispatched the marshals to the FBI building less than a block away after the FBI informed them it had uncovered in its files additional information about the tear gas. Department sources said Attorney General Janet Reno and her top aides were angered at the latest turn of events. Just a week ago, the FBI was forced to recant six years of denials that it had used incendiary tear gas during the final hours of the 51-day siege….. The FBI source said the new material, found in the offices of the FBI's Hostage Rescue Team in Quantico, Va., was turned up as part of FBI Director Louis Freeh's mandate that all files be searched for relevant information in advance of the investigation….. After the evidence was found, it was transferred to FBI headquarters in Washington, where the marshals took possession. ……``We are anxious to identify and preserve for outside review and congressional oversight anything that may bear on the firing of the military gas rounds,'' Collingwood said. ``In the end, the only way we can completely restore our credibility is to identify every scrap of information we have and immediately turn it over to whomever is doing the review.'' ….."

Freeper TheWriter warns 9/1/99 "…Expect major happenings on American soil. You do realize that under the new Terrorism Task Force Guidelines outlined in the 1998 House Committee Hearings for the Subcomittee on Readiness, Personnel, and Milcom, (September 25, 1998), Reno assumes control of the NATIONAL GUARD in October, 2000. Her powers at that point (in the event of a domestic terrorist attack) are astounding! Who else takes the reigns of power? None other than Sandy "I'm a Chicom loving fool" Berger and FEMA (A conspiracy fave!). Pretty darn convenient, huh? Right before the election…."

Freeper M. Thatcher observes Dallas Morning News 9/2/99 "…Rep. Pete Sessions, R-Dallas, a former member of the House Government Reform Committee, which has subpoenaed federal records on the issue, said through a spokesman that he also believes Ms. Reno should leave…." I looked Pete Sessions up in The Almanac of American Politics, quote: "The congressman from the 5th District is Pete Sessions, a Republican elected in 1996. Sessions grew up in Waco, graduated from Southwestern University, then worked at Southwestern Bell in Dallas for 16 years; his father William Sessions, a federal judge, served as FBI director from 1987-93."

Time Daily@Time.com 9/1/99 Tony Karon "…On one hand, she is reported to be pushing for an independent inquiry into the debacle; on the other, she appears to be trying to stop the facts from coming out. While the attorney general was reported Wednesday to be searching for a qualified outsider to lead an investigation, her department also filed a motion Tuesday challenging U.S. District Judge Walter Smith's right to claim custody of all evidence relating to the siege collected at the Branch Davidian compound. Judge Smith, whose district is in Texas, ruled that he would take control of the evidence following a motion brought by the Texas Public Safety Commission to make evidence gathered at the massacre site available to civil litigants, the media and members of the public….. With conspiracy theorists crying cover-up and Congressman Dan Burton (R-Ind.) threatening to go ballistic on Capitol Hill, Justice's attempt to keep a lid on the evidence may simply fuel the clamor. "A lot of different parties want to take a look at this material, and any perceived foot-dragging or reluctance by Reno to make it available will simply deepen suspicion in some quarters," says Hylton. Then again, six years of evasiveness has done a pretty good job of that already…."

Dallas Morning News 9/3/99 Lee Hancock "…A General Accounting Office report on military assistance at Waco found that FBI agents had obtained 50 40-mm ``illumination rounds,'' or flares, and 250 40-mm ``high explosive'' rounds from the U.S. Army for use during the standoff. All of the rounds can be fired with the hand-held M-79 grenade launchers that FBI agents used to send teargas rounds into the compound, according to the report, released last week…...An FBI official, asked Friday about the need for such devices at Waco, said the illumination rounds probably were sought from the military because ``we had people sneaking in to the compound at night and we had people trying to sneak out. ``But why they had the H-E (high explosive) rounds, I don't know,'' said the official, who spoke on the condition he would not be named…..A second tape, released Friday, runs from 7:57 a.m. to just before 9:30 a.m. and includes transmissions of agents saying the military canisters fired from a Bradley fighting vehicle didn't get into the bunker. ``The military gas did not penetrate that bunker....It bounced off,'' a male voice says at 8:08 a.m…..Texas Rangers began uncovering evidence that pyrotechnic teargas was used by the FBI almost a month before the latest disclosures. The Rangers were brought in the Branch Davidian standoff began, and they were asked by the Justice Department to keep all of the key evidence from the resulting criminal investigations and trials….Earlier this summer, the Rangers began an inquiry to try to resolve questions about unidentified shell casings and projectiles in their evidence lockers. They have identified one of the shell casings as part of an M651 military CS tear gas round fired by the FBI on April 19. They have not been able to locate a spent M651 round that was photographed in 1993 by investigators at the Branch Davidian compound. Friday, the Rangers traveled to Waco to try to find the device in a large storage locker containing evidence recovered from the compound that was not considered relevant to the criminal investigation or trial. Law enforcement officials in Texas said the Rangers were allowed to search through boxes of wreckage compound only after U.S. District Judge Walter Smith was called. Before that call, the officials said, agents from the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms assigned to maintain custody of that evidence trove told the Rangers that their lawyers in Washington had ordered them to deny the Rangers entry. ``We managed to resolve it by taking it to the judge, but this is just an indication of how strange things have gotten,'' said one official who spoke on condition of anonymity…."

Christian Science Monitor 9/3/99 James N Thurman "…A videotape containing audio transmissions between FBI operatives and on-the-ground supervisors is being examined at the Justice Department this week, and officials in Washington are asking, "What next?" "Looks as though the Department of Justice can't tell the truth," said Sen. Orrin Hatch (R) of Utah….. Some experts see the efforts to conduct an independent investigation and more congressional hearings as little more than political gamesmanship. But it does raise important questions about how the FBI does its job….. As the investigation effort proceeds, some see more bombshells to come. According to those that have investigated and followed the Waco tragedy closely, the cautionary lessons need to be codified. They come at the expense of the FBI's credibility. "When law enforcement want to play soldier or conduct a commando using tanks and tear gas ... at those moments, somebody should say wait a minute," says Alan Stone, a professor of law and psychiatry at Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass. "It should have to be approved at the highest levels and the people who make the decisions ought to make it in writing," he says…."

Reagan Information Interchange 9/3/99 Mary Mostert "…Finally, after six years of denial, someone's conscience must have finally gotten to them. A former FBI man went public, admitting what had been testified to by investigators - that the FBI actually HAD used pyrotechnic devices against the Davidians. The 1997 documentary "Waco: The Rules of Engagement" has pictures of the two pyrotechnic gas grenades the FBI has finally admitted using. "The documentary has everything in it you've read recently about Waco except the involvement of the Army's Delta Force," Morse observed. "However, the film's executive producer / producer, Dan Gifford, wrote about the Delta Force involvement in June in Skeptic Magazine and on the film web site, waco93.com. "Here it is August, and it's just now news. Everyone in the press should rent the film, too." What is new and different about the Waco situation is that all the sudden people are beginning to talk about facts which some of us have been writing about for 5-6 years…."

Reagan Information Interchange 9/3/99 Mary Mostert "…As editor of the Reagan Monitor (https://locked.webforums.com/forums/secure.o-read/msa21.225.html) I researched and wrote about the Waco cover-up back in early 1995. One of the first articles on the Reagan Information Interchange (http://www.reagan.com/HotTopics.main/HotMike/document-2.28.1996.2.html) was a report from the Committee for Waco Justice, headed by Carol Moore. The Committee charged in February 1996 that the murder of the Branch Dividians from BATF Helicopter gunfire was being covered up…."

Reagan Information Interchange 9/3/99 Mary Mostert "…At trial three National Guard helicopter pilots denied the helicopters had circled Mount Carmel before the beginning of the raid, as if scoping it out for targets. However, KWTX-TV cameraman Dan Mulloney and reporter John McLemore testified they saw the helicopters do just that. During the House Waco hearings, BATF agent Davy Aguilera, who was in one of the helicopters, revealed that BATF agents in the Blackhawk had had their weapons loaded during the raid. He also disclosed agents had been told they would be permitted to >fire in self-defense. When asked if any agents had fired, he answered, "No." Raid co-commander Phillip Chojnacki responded to the same question with, "Not to my knowledge." Representative Melvin Watt presented statements from the rest of the agents inthe Blackhawk that they had not fired. Congress took these denials as sufficient "proof" of their innocence and dismissed all other evidence.

Reagan Information Interchange 9/3/99 Mary Mostert "…KWTX-TV Video Shows Shots Fired From Sky - The frequently shown KWTX-TV video of an agent being shot at through the wall of the second story room displays clear evidence that at least four bullets were fired from above just two to three minutes into the raid. The sounds of aircraft overhead can be heard. Bullet holes can be seen appearing in the roof and eaves of the building and the projected trajectory of the bullets appears much too steep to have come from the four story tower, from which Davidians were firing…."

Reagan Information Interchange 9/3/99 Mary Mostert "…Early in the raid, in their second phone call to 9-1-1, now-deceased Davidian Wayne Martin cries out: "Another chopper with more people; more guns going off. They're firing. That's them, not us." Steve Schneider adds, "There's a chopper with more of them. Another chopper with more people and more guns going off. Here they come!" …… Now-deceased David Koresh and Steve Schneider argued with Federal Bureau of Investigation agents, maintaining agents had shot from the helicopters and killed Davidians. They repeatedly claimed that FBI agents wanted to burn Mount Carmel to destroy the evidence of this lethal firing. (Davidian survivor David Thibodeau claims firing from helicopters left 100 bullet holes in the walls and roofs.) ……Eight Davidian Survivors Claim They Saw Firing or Evidence of Firing….."

Reagan Information Interchange 9/3/99 Mary Mostert "…In what appears to be a massive effort to blame everything on the FBI and make Janet Reno and her boss, Bill Clinton totally innocent, we are beeing assured by newspapers like the San Francisco Examinier that Jane Reno was "deceived." First, if she was deceived she is incredibly stupid. As Morse pointed out, all she needed to do was rent the video. If a video producer could find the facts which the FBI is only now admitting to - and I knew the facts 4-5 years ago and wrote about them, the Attorney General MUST have known them. What we are seeing about Waco is simply another massive White House spin, in cooperation with its kept press. The FBI which HAD to have had Janet Reno's approval to go ahead with the raid, is being blamed for the cover-up Let's not forget, folks, it was a member of the FBI, retired, who finally blew the whistle on the Justice Department. And the Justice Department ends up with the evidence? Unbelievable! Where's Congress? Are they all asleep? …"

Reagan Information Interchange 9/3/99 Ian Goddard "…I've just viewed the FLIR (Forward Looking Infra-Red) video shot from a helicopter over Mt Carmel in Waco, TX on April 19, 93; the final day of the Waco siege. This is the video reported to show gunshots being fired into the Mt. Carmel Center as the fire breaks out and shortly before. These FLIR gunshots where spoken of by former Attorney General Ramsey Clark, who will defend the Davidians in upcoming trails for wrongful death. I've taken this on faith of Ramsey and many experts that the FLIR does show gunshots. Well I saw it for myself yesterday and there's no question about it. I had the feeling beforehand that the shots might look like: "Ya, well, maybe they're gunshots." Nope. It could not more obvious !! …."

Reagan Information Interchange 9/3/99 Ian Goddard "…The shots come from several points of origin very close to the building, within about 50 feet or less. The flashes on the FLIR video (where heat = brighter and cold = darker) are pure white and their shape has length with the widest portion being closest to the what stands to reason is a gun muzzle tapering to a point furthest from the muzzle, indicating that the shots are fired AT the building. The muzzle flash/streaks are sporadic. At one point appearing to be full automatic. They are most frequent as the fire increases. The tanks move around the points from which the shots emanate in such a way as to eliminate the possibility that they could be Davidians who had ventured outside to fire on the tanks. The shots are never pointed at the tanks, and like I said, the form and motion of the flashes indicate that they were fired at the building. All this firing occurred around the back. The media once had a view to the back, but I understand that the media was removed from that point of view shortly before April 19…."

Reagan Information Interchange 9/3/99 Ian Goddard "…I spoke with a survivor of the fire, David Thibodeau, who told me that the FBI tanks shoved debris that included broken wood, glass, and torn sharp-edged sheet metal all along the back walls of the Mt Carmel center on the last day. This served to block most doors and make any window jump a sure death trap. They did, however, apparently leave one open area that can be seen on the video. It's toward this area, which must have been the best escape route, that most shots are fired. There were openings around the front, but there was almost always tanks going deep inside them, or hanging around them -- not a very inviting exit, and at the same time, perfect wind channels to feed a fire. This open area around back where most shots were focused was approximately right next to the door to the concrete "bunker," or store room, where over 40 women and children died, many of whom, according to the pathologists, where crushed to death by the disintegrating concrete walls after a tank rammed the room. It seems that any of the women or children that would have tried to escape their tomb, were to be shot just as they exited. …"

Reagan Information Interchange 9/3/99 Ian Goddard "…Several of the survivors said that they knew of many people who ran out the back, yet never survived. The survivors said that they believed these people were shot down, and they were saying this about as soon as they were able to speak to those not detaining them. Not until this FLIR video was carefully analyzed by experts was there any evidence for these claims. There is also evidence that Mt Camel Center was under long-range gunfire as the fire broke out and shortly before. The FLIR shows what Dr. Edward F. Allard, an expert in radiation physics and thermal imaging, believes are bullets ricocheting off surfaces from very rapid-firing machine guns that are being discharged toward the building from a long distance…."

Washington Times 9/3/99 Craig Paul Roverts "…The new investigation won't get to the bottom of anything. It is merely the latest phase of a continuing cover-up. The issue is not why flammable devices were fired at the Davidians, but why the Davidians were illegally attacked with deadly force, first by an army of ATF agents firing automatic weapons, and then by the FBI with tanks, poison gas and pyrotechnic devices. Why are the federal officials who approved the illegal attacks still in public office and not in federal prison? The Davidians were not doing anything to anyone. They were peacefully practicing their religion. Everyone in the compound was there voluntarily. The warrant to inspect the Davidians' guns could have been peacefully served by knocking on the door or handed to Davidian leader David Koresh on any number of occasions when he left the compound. The Davidians' religion is a bit out of the ordinary -- but not as far out as the witch worship services that the U.S. Army permits soldiers to conduct. So far, the ATF and the FBI have not attacked the witch worshippers among the Army's troops…… Why were the president of the United States, the attorney general, Congress, a vast array of federal officials, the national media, and the American Bar Association content for federal agents to assault and exterminate 86 peaceful, religious people? The only whistleblowers were an independent documentary producer, a handful of columnists, and the chairman of the Texas Rangers. Why? …."

Capitolhillblue 9/3/99 Dan Thomasson "… One can have little sympathy for the adult followers of David Koresh, male or female, who murdered four federal agents in cold blood, wounded 20 others and caused the death of more than 30 innocent children. No new inquiry by Congress or by an outside panel named by Attorney General Janet Reno will alter their culpability…… Sadly, however, their responsibility for their own demise now will forever be questioned because of the FBI's intransigence and its seemingly constitutional inability to accept criticism for its actions or to concede that it has made a mistake…… Was the FBI irresponsible in its decision to try to force the religious nuts out of their illegal arsenal? That seems obvious now. But actually it was obvious then. A green-as-a-gourd attorney general capitulated to pressure from militant FBI officials who ignored warnings from their own psychological profilers that Koresh was a time bomb and shouldn't be pushed. Reno bravely stood up and took the blame and the FBI let her. She should have resigned then. But had the FBI accepted responsibility for its missteps and taken action to alter its internal operations, as was the case with the ATF, there would be no need now for further examination…..An FBI agent shoots a mother in the infamous Ruby Ridge affair; the bureau, under directions from the highest command, goes after the wrong man in the Atlanta bombing case; an arrogant FBI refuses to accept local law-enforcement pleas that the wrong suspects are in custody in a national park murder case, resulting in the death of another woman by the real killer; the Texas Rangers bring in a notorious serial killer as the bureau stands by in frustration, and on and on. Throughout all the incidents of near incompetence, the FBI arrogantly has maintained its infallibility, pointing fingers at other agencies, both federal and local. The FBI rushed into the Waco scene clearly eager to show that ATF was incompetent and determined to demonstrate how it was supposed to be done….."

Dallas Morning News via Knight-Ridder newswire 9/3/99 Scott Parks "…Ramsey Clark, a former U.S. attorney general, petitioned the U.S. Court of Civil Appeals to direct District Judge Walter S. Smith of Waco, Texas, to reassign the case to another district judge. Clark also asked the appeals court to order Smith to vacate his order setting the trial for Oct. 18. Clark was not available for comment Friday, but other plaintiffs' attorneys in the case have accused Judge Smith of bias in favor of the federal government….."

Dallas Morning News via Knight Ridder newswire 9/3/99 Lee Hancock "…A federal judge was forced to intervene Friday after federal officials tried to block Texas Rangers from entering a Waco storage facility to search for evidence that pyrotechnic devices were fired at the Branch Davidian complex. That brief skirmish came the same day FBI officials in Washington released the second of two newly discovered aerial videotapes that include conversations between FBI commanders about the use of combustible teargas canisters….. "

Texas Straight Talk Congressman Ron Paul "…For years the Clinton Administration, with their willing allies in Congress and the mainstream press, have parroted the line that federal law enforcement officials did nothing wrong in the Branch Davidian stand-off at Waco. Anyone who questioned the government's official position was relegated to being either a far-right extremist, a militia kook, or a follower of the undeniably peculiar David Koresh……It was just weeks after coming to Congress in 1997, while on a national television program, that I was asked about the then-four-year-old case. I responded with the position that the evidence was overwhelmingly strong that everything was not as bureaucrats in the Clinton Administration claimed….. Almost immediately the defenders of big government, the administration and the war on civil liberties launched into wild hysterics. I had committed the unpardonable sin of believing the facts rather than the government spin, which attempted to justify the murder of innocent children and untried, uncharged adults…..The Attorney General and her minions in Congress maintained that the conflagration had been a rash act of mass suicide, ignoring that just hours before the raid those same people had requested their phone lines be reconnected. They also ignored the infrared evidence that government agents, as the fire was raging on one side of the house, were entering the home through the back, and that tanks were injecting gases banned under international treaties. Now, though, even the most blind followers of the administration and its policies are left stunned with revelations that high-ranking FBI officials and others lied to Congress, hid evidence, broke the law and knowingly subverted justice…… These people certainly held peculiar religious beliefs. They may have even been very odd in their habits and mores. But they were citizens of the United Sates. Not terrorists or child molesters -- despite early claims by the FBI, repudiated by the Waco child protective services offices. They were not drug dealers -- a lie told to justify the use of deadly military force; no drug manufacturing equipment was ever found or seriously believed to exist….. With the veneer being stripped from the myth of federal law enforcement, Americans are beginning to realize that it is both unconstitutional and untenable. One cannot have a legion of heavily armed bureaucrats with unlimited jurisdiction, the might of the military at their call, and no accountability, yet expect they will respect civil liberties……"

Rush Limbaugh, EIB Network 9/2/99 Freeper newsman "…"This is a crowning event," Rush said. "If this doesn't demonstrate the utter chaos and absolute breakdown of authority at the Justice Department nothing does. Not since Watergate has the Justice Department been in such turmoil, with its own credibility undermined." Now, he continued, "as I said, in my opinion, Janet Reno long ago lost any credibility on anything. The Chinese funny money scandal and anything else she has investigated has been swept under the rug," if it gets close to anyone in the Clinton administration. "At this point, Janet Reno shouldn't be issuing orders at all because she is in a total face-saving mode," the talk show host charged. "Everything Janet Reno does contaminates this investigation. She is the reason why the Justice Department is collapsing. She is the reason why the government concealed for six years all the facts surrounding Waco. And she is the reason why over 80 American citizens were killed at Waco."….."Now somebody is responsible for Waco," he declared. "Somebody gave orders. The president does supercede Janet Reno. I have never believed that Janet Reno alone could sit there and order that activity without having the president know of it and sign off on it……. In concluding what he described as his "mini rant," Rush decried what the Clintons were doing to our once excellent international reputation. "We are beginning to look to the people around the world like another banana republic. But we are not governed by a cult of personality. Ours is the greatest nation on the face of the earth, with the oldest written constitution in the world." But now, today, he noted, "we are faced by another test: "Will Waco be fully exposed?" "Only time will tell. But the real targets of any investigation of this should be Janet Reno and Bill Clinton. And somebody needs to tell Louis Freech that's he's being set up as the fall guy for this - if he doesn't already know it." …"

ABC News 9/2/99 Freeper commish "…They had one of the FBI Hostage Negotaitors from WACO on ABC Nightly News tonight (name escapes me) .. He said that it is nonsense for anyone to believe Rogers gave the order to use Incendiary devices himself. The COnversation on ABC went like this (paraphrasing here - can't remember exact words) FBI : "That frequency used on that tape would be monitored at the command post" ABC : "Command Post? In Washington D.C. " FBI : "Yes in Washington. That was a tactical frequency and would have been patched in to Headquarters" ABC : "So senior leadership would have heard the order to use Military Rounds" FBI : "They would have heard it and been able to countermand it. By Staying silent FBI HQ and DOJ GAVE TACIT APPROVAL for the use of incendiaries" …"

Fort Worth Star-Telegram 9/2/99 "…It was April 28, 1993, and Attorney General Janet Reno, in a dramatic standoff with Republican critics, had gone before the House Judiciary Committee and claimed none of the tear-gas devices fired at the Branch Davidian compound on the tragic last day of the siege was capable of causing the inferno that ended the ordeal. ``I wanted and received assurances that the gas and its means of use were not pyrotechnic,'' Reno said in a jammed House hearing room before a panel considered the most partisan in Congress……"

Dallas Morning News via Knight-Ridder newswire 9/2/99 Lee Hancock "…``This new information opens the whole time period near the fire open to question,'' said Henry Ruth, a Watergate prosecutor who helped the Treasury Department in an independent review of the ATF after Waco. ``If two military gas canisters were available early in the morning, there must have been a supply there,'' Ruth said. ``You know there weren't only two. There have got to be four, maybe more. This certainly raises the specter that they used even more and concealed it.'' …."

Associated Press 9/3/99 Michelle Mittelstadt "…The FBI made the tape public Thursday as Attorney General Janet Reno asked an outsider to head an independent inquiry into the FBI's long-denied use of flammable weapons during the April 19, 1993, assault near Waco, Texas…… The FBI's admission last week that combustible tear gas was used, recanting six years of claims to the contrary, provoked a furor on and off Capitol Hill….. The infrared videotape made public Thursday, recorded from an FBI plane, runs from just before 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. on the final morning of the 51-day siege - covering the period during which the FBI assault began….. A second videotape, which runs from 8 a.m. to 10:42 a.m., surfaced Thursday; and FBI officials were taking steps to release it publicly as well. Bureau officials had previously insisted in sworn affidavits that they didn't have any infrared video footage before 10:42 a.m. - hours after the tear-gas assault began at 5:55 a.m. FBI spokesman Tron Brekke said the apparent discrepancy is ``a legitimate point for inquiry.'' ……The FBI said the conversation took place at 7:49 a.m. - nearly two hours after the tear-gas assault began but hours before flames began racing through the Davidians' wooden home at 12:07 p.m….. "

Washington Post 9/3/99 Edward Walsh Richard Leiby "…According to a transcript of the conversation, the early morning authorization to fire at least two such cartridges was given by Richard M. Rogers, the assistant special agent in charge of the FBI's hostage rescue team. In a detailed FBI account of the tactics and equipment used during the assault, Rogers made no mention of the incendiary rounds. Later, in court documents, FBI officials stated that no videotape existed of that stage of the operation…."

Washington Post 9/3/99 Edward Walsh Richard Leiby "…Rogers, the Hostage Rescue Team leader who approved use of the incendiary military tear gas cartridges, was interviewed by FBI agents two days after the final assault on the Branch Davidian compound. A six-page account of the interview provides details of Rogers' actions that morning, but it deals exclusively with attempts to insert tear gas into the main compound structure and what Rogers did after the structure burst into flames. There is no mention in the account of an attempt to penetrate the underground shelter and it is not clear whether Rogers was asked about this by FBI investigators…."

Washington Post 9/3/99 Edward Walsh Richard Leiby "…Last year, when ordered by a federal judge to publicly release all aerial infrared videotapes taken during the assault, FBI and Justice Department officials swore in court papers that after an exhaustive search, they could find no evidence that such recordings existed prior to 10:42 a.m……U.S. District Judge Alfredo C. Marquez ordered the FBI to speed up the request, and later expressed frustration when the bureau contended that no such tapes existed. "In this court's opinion, FBI stonewalled release of [Hardy's] most controversial request: the [infrared] tapes," Marquez wrote in an order filed in July. The judge also awarded Hardy more than $32,000 in attorneys' fees, a penalty divided between the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, whose videos and audiotapes Hardy also had sought. …"

New York Post 9/3/99 Marilyn Rauber "…The FBI's secret Waco videotape reveals an agent asking permission to use banned flammable tear gas at the Texas compound and his boss telling him, "You can try it." The two agents - whose actions have sparked a flap that now threatens the jobs of both Attorney General Janet Reno and FBI Director Louis Freeh - were also apparently figured in the deadly 1992 Ruby Ridge siege, where the FBI's tactics also came under question. The FBI identified the two as Richard Rogers, assistant agent-in-charge of the FBI's Hostage Rescue Team at Waco - and who, in House Waco hearings in 1995, seemed to imply that only "benign" tear gas was used at the stand-off - and rescue team agent Stephen McGavin…… The tape, showing the compound under a partial cover of cloud, runs from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. and the FBI plans to release today a second tape that shows what happened in the subsequent two hours…… President Clinton seems to be standing by Reno - for now…… Both Rogers and McGavin were reportedly embroiled in a controversy over the FBI's rules of engagement at Ruby Ridge - a standoff in Idaho with survivalist Randy Weaver that ended with the FBI killing Weaver's wife and son - which critics claimed amounted to a "shoot on sight" order….."

WorldNet Daily 9/3/99 Joseph Farah "…One of the original witnesses against the Branch Davidians was Bill Buford, the agent in charge of the Little Rock, Ark., branch of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. Buford was, also, according to Arkansas sources, a friend of Bill. The Waco case was apparently very important to Buford as an affidavit states he was working on New Year's Day calling former Branch Davidians seeking to find evidence of sexual abuse. My friend and colleague, Andy Beal, who first explored the Little Rock connection to Waco, asks a good question: What was the resident agent in charge of the Little Rock office of the BATF doing investigating a sex abuse case in Texas? Is sex abuse BATF's jurisdiction? Is Texas under the jurisdiction of the BATF's Arkansas office? Documents show Buford is noted as one of two "senior raid planners." He was also one of the BATF agents wounded during the Feb. 28 assault, but he is perhaps the only BATF agent to be visited in the hospital by none other than top Treasury Department official Roger Altman. Altman was the long-time "Friend of Bill" appointed to be deputy secretary of the Treasury and chief executive officer of the Resolution Trust Corporation. He resigned in August 1994 due to his interference in the Whitewater investigation. At the time of the Waco raid, Roger Altman was the second highest-ranking official at the Department of the Treasury. The BATF is a bureau within the Treasury Department…."

WorldNet Daily 9/3/99 Joseph Farah "…Foster, Hubbell, Altman and Buford were all in Little Rock leading up to the inauguration. Clinton takes power Jan. 20, 1993. One month later, the BATF stages the largest and most dramatic raid in its history -- videotaped in living color in anticipation of its success in subduing religious non-conformists in possession of illegal guns. The injustice and illegality of the initial raid has still never been fully examined. Today the focus is on how and why the remaining occupants of the church building were exterminated in a fire. Yet, the equally puzzling question of why a dynamic and violent entry was necessary to serve a search warrant on David Koresh shortly after he went target shooting with officers of the BATF. The local sheriff offered to serve the warrant at the general store to avoid any confrontation. There was simply no need for all the deadly theatrics of the initial raid….."

Janet Reno/News Breifing 9/3/99 Freeper marty60 reports "…Janet Reno has just stated that the Marshalls have been ordered to secure Evidence and turn such evidence to Judge Smith in compliance with HIS COURT ORDER. She just blinked…."

Inside the Beltway (Washington Times) 9/3/99 John McCaselin "…Former FBI agent Gary Aldrich, once assigned to conduct security checks at the Clinton White House, says that blame for the deadly 1993 siege at the Branch Davidian compound near Waco, Texas, should not stop with Attorney General Janet Reno. "Who can have faith in any investigation put together by Janet Reno?" the ex-agent tells Inside the Beltway. "She'll say and do whatever it takes to keep us away from the real reason for the Waco tragedy -- the Clinton White House. "Clinton advisers wanted the standoff ended," Mr. Aldrich says. "[Sect leader David] Koresh was making their Bill look impotent in the eyes of the media and, you know, Bill Clinton has never liked that kind of image, not one bit. "People were actually comparing Clinton to Jimmy Carter, but at the time of Waco, Clinton was only lusting after good press," says Mr. Aldrich, who wrote an unflattering best seller about his White House experience, "Unlimited Access." …."

Dallas Morning News 9/3/99 Scott Paks Lee Hancock "…A U.S. district judge ordered government lawyers Thursday to turn over all evidence pertaining to the 1993 Branch Davidian siege by Oct. 1 or face contempt-of-court charges. The order by Judge Walter Smith of Waco came in response to a U.S. Justice Department motion this week challenging his authority to demand control of the evidence being sought in a wrongful-death lawsuit. Judge Smith said Bill Blagg, the U.S. attorney with jurisdiction over Waco, must appear before him Oct. 1 "to explain why he and the United States should not be held in contempt of court" if they do not comply with his order…… "The court's purpose is to secure the evidence so that neither the parties to the pending civil litigation, the media or the public will perceive that the government may have the opportunity to conceal, alter or fail to reveal evidence," Judge Smith wrote….. "Hallelujah!" said lead plaintiffs' lawyer Mike Caddell of Houston. "I'm happy. It's clear that the Justice Department and FBI are not trustworthy custodians of the evidence. I can't figure out why the government would resist the order." ….The Texas Department of Public Safety and the Texas Rangers also have a major portion of evidence. The state agency's lawyers filed a motion this summer asking Judge Smith to take control of the evidence it has accumulated and stored since the Justice Department asked the Rangers to investigate the standoff in 1993…..Texas law officers have said they felt caught in the middle between those who wanted to view the evidence and a federal government that wanted to keep it secret. James Francis Jr., DPS chairman, said he was happy with Judge Smith's order. "I hope that all parties will comply with the ruling and the evidence can be analyzed by the proper experts and all the parties involved, so whatever the truth is can be known and the facts come out," Mr. Francis said Thursday….. Instead, he [Judge Smith] rejected the Justice Department's contention that gathering, copying and transferring the evidence would be "an unwarranted and substantial burden" on the entire federal government. "The court finds this argument somewhat disingenuous since the government has been in possession of this material for six years and has been aware since 1994, when the civil suits were originally filed, that this material could very well be subject to discovery," Judge Smith wrote……"

Washington Post 9/3/99 Richard Leiby "….One such document--an FBI form 302--obtained by The Post, is the account of FBI supervisor Richard Rogers, who was in charge of the 50-member FBI hostage rescue team at Waco. Rogers issued orders at the scene in consultation with the FBI special agent in charge, Jeffrey Jamar. Rogers's form 302 mentions the two nonflammable forms of tear gas deployed that day. He specifically noted the use of 40mm "ferret" rounds--football-size plastic shells fired from M-79 grenade launchers--which, as he said, are "nonburning" and "produce no heat." But the six-page narrative makes no mention of the use of pyrotechnic rounds…..Asked how the military gas could have entered the FBI ordnance supply, Coulson--the founding commander of the FBI's hostage rescue team--said in an interview: "I don't have a clue . . . Dick Rogers would know. . . . Someone in the chain of command would have to know." ……

Washington Post 9/3/99 Richard Leiby "…The Justice Department's voluminous report on the FBI's actions at Waco notes: "The gas delivery systems the FBI used were completely nonincendiary." Delivered on Oct. 8, 1993, the report was written by a special assistant to Reno, Richard Scruggs, now a federal prosecutor in Florida. Scruggs did not respond to requests for comment this week, but in an interview with The Post nearly three years ago he defended the thoroughness of his inquiry: "We interviewed every single person on the [hostage rescue team]--50. We interviewed every single person who had anything to do with Waco at all--over 900 people, even secretaries. "We interviewed the firearms specialist," Scruggs said. "When FBI agents fire their weapons, they have to account for it. With the FBI weapons, all the ammunition was accounted for. It was accounting for gas canisters that was difficult."

Washington Post 9/3/99 Richard Leiby "…In 1994, a Waco television reporter, Joe Calao, found footage of what appears to be smoke rising near the Davidians' storm shelter between 7:30 and 8:30 a.m. on April 19, hours before the fire started shortly after noon. Calao said he consulted numerous tear gas experts, who concluded that the FBI must have been using pyrotechnic rounds that morning, based on the clouds of smoke and gas. Calao said he contacted the Justice Department for comment, and then-spokesman Carl Stern told him the camera must have captured a cloud of dirt, not smoke. Stern said this week he was relaying what he'd been told by Scruggs and others who had conducted the official inquiry, that no burning tear gas rounds were used. By 1996, Calao's footage came to the attention of attorneys who had filed a wrongful death suit for the relatives and estates of the dead Davidians against the federal government. A photograph of a 40mm munition found at the scene surfaced in the civil lawsuit, suggesting that the FBI had fired a type of tear gas ordnance it had never disclosed. …."

Washington Post 9/3/99 Richard Leiby "…Colorado filmmaker Michael McNulty gained access to more than 500 containers of evidence held by the Texas Rangers, and said he found various other potentially fire-causing devices. In November 1998, he presented his findings to Justice Department and FBI officials and asked for a response for his upcoming documentary, "Waco: a New Revelation." He says no officials were interested. …."

Drudge 9/2/99 "….Mike McNulty, the Oscar-nominated filmmaker, is now claiming that his follow-up documentary to "Waco: Rules of Engagement" will show on videotape Delta Force commandos in a gun battle at Waco! The explosive charges were raised on Thursday's Crossfire by syndicated columnist and host Robert Novak when he posed the following scenario to guest Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY): NOVAK: Let me give you a major issue involved, and that is that Mike McNulty, who has a documentary that is going to come out in a few weeks, says that he shows on the documentary members of the commando -- U.S. Army commando group Delta Force in a gunfight with the Koresh people. For this information to come out now, six years later, if his video shows that, that's a disgrace, isn't it?" WEINER: You know, can I tell you, ever since this incident happened, there have been conspiracy theorists who have sought to keep it alive... NOVAK: As a reporter, Mr. Weiner, I would be very interested in seeing this video and seeing whether indeed we have documentary evidence of this gunfight going on with Delta Force people without an authorization needed by law from the president. Wouldn't you as a congressman and a member of the Judiciary Committee like to see that tape before you make these conclusions saying that it's a conspiracy theory? ….. "

New York Times 9/3/99 David Johnston "…The conflict between Ms. Reno, Director Freeh and their two agencies publicly erupted on Wednesday when Ms. Reno dispatched United States marshals to Freeh's headquarters to seize previously undisclosed tapes that contained radio voice communications of agents asking for and receiving authorization to fire the tear-gas rounds. On Thursday, F.B.I. officials complained that Ms. Reno ordered the marshals to take custody of the tapes in a way that left a powerful impression that Ms. Reno no longer believed the F.B.I. could be trusted. "It was a heavy-handed thing to do," said one law-enforcement official. "Like the F.B.I. was going to destroy the evidence?" …… Other current and former Justice Department and F.B.I. officials said the disclosures regarding the use of pyrotechnic tear gas represented a final straw to Ms. Reno after years of simmering disputes with the F.B.I. over its independent dealings with Congress in budget, legislative and other priorities. The relationship seemed to sour after news accounts reported in 1997 that Freeh had urged Ms. Reno to seek an independent prosecutor to investigate how the Democrats financed their 1996 Presidential campaign -- a position that badly undercut Ms. Reno, already under fire from Republicans in Congress who had attacked her for refusing to refer the case to an independent counsel…… Earlier this year, tensions between top officials ignited again in a bitter crossfire over the handling of an investigation of a nuclear scientist at the Los Alamos laboratory in New Mexico. F.B.I. officials said they had appealed to Ms. Reno for permission to begin electronic surveillance of the scientist, but the Justice Department officials rejected their request….. "

New York Times 9/3/99 Ronald Noble "…It is one thing to call for an independent investigation, and it is another to give that investigation the power to write a credible report….. Let's remember that this would be the second investigation the Justice Department has conducted into the events at Waco. In 1993, Edward S. G. Dennis Jr., a well-respected former Federal prosecutor, wrote a report based on the Justice Department's factual account of what happened. This report largely exonerated the F.B.I. and the Justice Department but did not fully gain the confidence of those who wanted an independent investigation. In hindsight, it seems that the Justice Department made a mistake in not ordering an independent investigation back in 1993. Now the reputations of Janet Reno, Louis Freeh, Edward Dennis, the F.B.I. and the entire Justice Department are sullied. …... Was there a coverup? The only way to answer that question is by examining prior investigations. To determine what was known and said about the existence of these incendiary tear gas canisters and tapes, the independent investigation must review all of the physical evidence, inventory lists, subpoena requests, grand jury testimony, trial testimony, Congressional testimony, witness interviews, internal reports, memorandums and correspondence, as well as news interviews, books and articles about Waco. In addition, it must conduct new interviews and convene a grand jury. Everyone must be interviewed, from the Attorney General to the lowest-ranking employee connected with this matter. The interviews must be compared to previous interviews, the interviews of others and to all the other evidence collected. Last, but not least, the investigation must determine how the fire started. Did the firing of incendiary tear gas canisters either cause or contribute to the conflagration? Here again, everything must be reviewed. New experts must be hired to review the previous scientific analysis and to conduct their own analysis. The challenge will be to find highly qualified arsons experts who have not already commented on this matter or who don't have strong ties to the F.B.I. or the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. Indeed, the independent investigator may be forced to turn to experts outside the United States. All these measures may seem draconian, but at stake are the reputation of law enforcement and public confidence in our justice system. Yes, this could be a long, troubled inquiry. But in light of the failed first investigation, Ms. Reno and Mr. Freeh must take this risk. ……Ronald K. Noble, a professor at New York University Law School, was Undersecretary of the Treasury Department and author of its report on the role that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms played in the raid at the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Tex….."

http://www.accesswaco.com/auto/feed/news/local/1999/09/02/936319448.21703.9149.0353.html 9/3/99 Mark England Tommy Witherspoon "…William Blagg, the U.S. attorney for the Western District of Texas, argued that Smith's order hindered the federal government's preparation to defend itself in the civil lawsuit set to go before Smith on Oct. 18. Smith was scornful of the government's argument that his order was too demanding…… The Justice Department's response to Smith's order was brief. "We're going to review it," said spokeswoman Carole Florman. Blagg warned in his motion filed earlier this week that compliance with the order could also potentially harm upcoming Justice Department and Congressional investigations into what happened at Mount Carmel, the Davidians' home 10 miles outside Waco. In order not to interfere with any investigations, Smith wrote that he would allow agencies turning over original evidence to make copies for their files……In his order, Smith demanded that all documents, reports, photographs, audio and video tapes - "including those recently seized from the Hostage Rescue Team of the FBI" - related to the Davidian lawsuit be delivered to the clerk for the Western District of Texas, based in San Antonio, by Oct. 1. …. Smith had copies of his order delivered to Blagg, Attorney General Janet Reno, FBI Director Louis Freeh and ATF Director John McGaw…… Smith warned that any party "that destroys, alters or otherwise tampers with any evidence related to the Branch Davidian criminal or civil litigation will be considered in contempt of court, with the resulting punishment to be determined by this Court."

Washington Times 9/3/99 Jerry Seper "…Several veteran FBI agents Thursday expressed outrage that the Justice Department sent U.S. marshals to seize a videotape of the bureau's 1993 raid on the Branch Davidian compound. At the same time, Justice officials said the bureau's handling of the affair has been "disastrous." …..With charges and counter-charges threatening to further erode the conflict, a dozen FBI supervisory and field agents described the seizure as unnecessary, saying the bureau already had made moves to restore credibility with the public and Congress. They said FBI officials had called for an outside probe, signaled their willingness to make available whatever information the bureau could find and had already voluntarily sent copies of the tape to House and Senate committees. "This seizure was nothing more than a public relations gimmick to take the heat off [Attorney General] Janet Reno and the Justice Department," said one veteran agent. "It was outrageous and unforgivable. It will be a long time --long after Janet Reno is gone -- before it will be forgotten." ….."

Washington Times 9/3/99 Jerry Seper "…But Justice Department officials said the FBI "botched" the Waco probe by failing to locate relevant information in a timely fashion. They said the bureau's actions called into question the credibility of all federal law enforcement agencies, adding there was "no excuse" for information to have been "lost" for six years. "This couldn't be any worse for all of us," said one Justice Department official. "The FBI blew it and they know it. That is not supposed to happen." ……"

Ft Worth Star-Telegram 9/3/99 Gabrielle Crist "…The assistant U.S. attorney who has accused the government of covering up the use of pyrotechnic devices at the 1993 Branch Davidian siege near Waco was once accused of covering up other evidence in the standoff. This week, Bill Johnston announced that someone in the Justice Dept faxed him a document establishing that pyrotechnic tear gas canisters were used on the last day of the standoff, which ended when the compound burned to the ground….. Johnston went public with the memo, he said, so that the truth about the siege can finally come out. But 4 years ago, Johnston was accused of covering up information about some of the events surrounding the deadly standoff. During his 1995 congressional hearing testimony, Ft Worth defense attorney Tim Evans presented an internal ATF memo saying that Johnston told Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Bureau agents-- to stop their internal investigation of the shooting that started the 51-day siege and left two Davidians and four ATF agents dead. …..The memo says Johnston feared that it would create evidence that defense attorneys could use at the upcoming criminal trials of some of the Branch Davidians survivors. Johnston allowed ATF agents, to interview one other agent, but "no notes were created," the memo said. In an interview yesterday, Evans said the documents "speak for themselves and they speak pretty plain language." Under Texas law, defense attorneys should have been given the information before the 1994 trials, or at least during them, he said. "The law requires the government to reveal this information . . .," Evans said. "Any agent that knew it and any prosecutor that knew it should have disclosed it."….. Johnston said he stopped the ATF shooting review because it was going to duplicate the independent investigation he had asked the Texas Rangers to conduct. He had explained that in his testimony. He said that because of the controversy surrounding the shooting, he did not believe that the ATF should investigate the matter internally…… "Do I think Bill Johnston made some mistakes in the past? "Absolutely," said Houston attorney Dan Cogdell, who represented a Branch Davidian who was acquitted. Nevertheless, Cogdell said he is pleased that Johnston has "recognized that the truth is bigger than him." "I think he's realized the errors of his ways," said Houston defense attorney Dick DeGuerin. "I'm glad he's seen the light." …."

Yahoo Reuters 9/2/99 James Vicini "...The disclosures have fueled a controversy over why the FBI only recently found the evidence about use of the devices during the fiery assault, which killed about 80 sect members, including leader David Koresh...... Last week Justice Department officials said a memo about use of the canisters was discovered to have been in the files of the FBI's general counsel's office since 1996...... "

NY Times Jim Yardley "...Michael McNulty and David Hardy refused to let go. In the six years since the Branch Davidian compound went up in flames on April 19, 1993, the two men have waged an obsessive quest to discredit the official account of what happened. Espousing views popular with many right-wing groups, McNulty, in particular, has blamed Federal agents for the deaths of the Branch Davidian leader, David Koresh, and about 80 of his followers, a position many critics regard as anti-Government propaganda. McNulty and Hardy, however, regard as Government propaganda the official explanation that Koresh and his followers carried out a suicide pact by setting fire to the cult compound and shooting themselves on the 51st day of a siege by Federal agents...... Hardy, 48, an Arizona lawyer, requested documents and evidence related to the siege and fire, then sued for them. Both men pushed the Texas Rangers to begin an inquiry into evidence under state control. They also gave information to lawyers representing the families of deceased Branch Davidians in a wrongful-death lawsuit. And McNulty, 53, a documentary film maker from Colorado, toured the state evidence lockers four times, unearthing what he says are potentially flammable devices capable of starting a fire. "Mike and Dave deserve the lion's share of the credit for coming up with the evidence," said Joe Phillips, a lawyer for the Branch Davidian families in the lawsuit, scheduled to go to trial in Federal court in Waco on Oct. 18. "They've been working on this for years." ...."

NY Times Jim Yardley "...But when Hardy requested evidence from the Rangers under a Texas public records law, he was told that only the Justice Department could authorize access. When he wrote to the Justice Department, he was told that the evidence was under the control of the Rangers. In one letter Hardy wrote to Texas officials, he bluntly said, "Did it ever occur to you guys that you're being set up?".... Until just over a year ago, neither McNulty nor Hardy had been able to collect much, if any, evidence from the Government. Then McNulty began telephoning Bill Johnston, an assistant United States Attorney in Waco...... Toward the end of 1998, McNulty said, he confronted Johnston with copies of records from Fort Bragg, N.C., suggesting that members of an elite military unit had been present for the fire at the compound. He got the documents from Hardy, who got them from another agency when the Justice Department was slow to respond. The military had responded quickly to Hardy's information requests, providing documents that detailed how members of the elite Delta Force military unit were at the compound on the day of the fire. The Pentagon now says there were three Delta Force soldiers present as observers......From November 1998 to last March, McNulty said, he paid four visits to the evidence rooms in Austin, always escorted by at least one Texas Ranger. He said he found at least four projectiles that he believes are pyrotechnic, and took samples for munitions testing...... Patterson said he first contacted Clay Johnson, chief of staff for Gov. George W. Bush, who referred him to James B. Francis Jr., chairman of the Department of Public Safety. Patterson said he met with Francis, explaining that neither the Rangers nor the Justice Department claimed to control access to the evidence from the fire. "It was a mess," Francis said in an interview...... "Once the court decided that the evidence was worth taking control of, it was the triggering device of everything that has happened since then," Francis said. He would speak only in broad terms about the evidence, but he said there were eyewitness accounts and photographs that raised questions about whether the Delta Force participated in the events at the compound. By law, military units like the Delta Force are allowed to observe but not operate inside the United States. "There are military guys in body armor and in face paint," Francis said, describing photographs. "It might be significant evidence when all the facts come out."..... "His access to information has been critical," Caddell said. "He has looked at information that Congress didn't see and the F.B.I. didn't see or didn't want to acknowledge." Without evidence provided to him by McNulty and Hardy, Caddell said, Judge Smith might have granted a Government motion to dismiss the case......."

CNN TalkBack Live 9/2/99 CNN Transcript "…BATTISTA: Good afternoon everybody and welcome to TALKBACK LIVE….. BATTISTA: Also with us now is Dick Reavis, an investigative journalist and author of the book "The Ashes of Waco." Dick, thanks for joining us again…… BATTISTA: Did you also try to get these tapes from -- is that what you're saying? -- from the FBI. REAVIS: In December of 1993, I made a Freedom of Information Act request which has not yet been fulfilled. I was called two weeks ago to say, patience, sometime soon. The Freedom of Information law is the stalling act. Unless you sue the government, you can't make it work……BATTISTA: Now as I understand it, David Hardy did get a response from the FBI and he was sent tapes from the Justice Department that were all after 10:42 in the morning, correct? And there was no audio on those. REAVIS: That's right. BATTISTA: So now we're finding out, Julian, that there were tapes prior to 10:42 in the morning and there was audio on them….

CNN TalkBack Live 9/2/99 CNN Transcript "…BATTISTA: Now, Dick, you have a different opinion about that. You do think that these tapes may perhaps effect the outcome of what happened at Waco? REAVIS: I don't know about these tapes, because they show two canisters which have no consequences. But if the committee decides to investigate things other than these two canisters, which we already no had no consequences, it will find all sorts of things. I think it will find that the gas itself -- that the instructions for the use of the chemicals it contained say, "Do not use indoors because there's a danger of flames and explosion." The gas itself prepped that building for anything to ignite it. We may also find that other canisters were fired with or without authorization that were pyrotechnic in nature. EPSTEIN: Well I'm not so certain about that. We took a pretty exhaustive look at that, and the CS gas that was used, which is the least flammable, is made up of CS particulate and carbon dioxide; none of which are flammable individually or in combination with each other. And I think even the military is now under some debate -- and I don't particular expertise in this area, but even the military is under some debate whether the two canisters which were pyrotechnic have very much of an incendiary capacity……

CNN TalkBack Live 9/2/99 CNN Transcript "…BATTISTA: Well, because Dick made that statement, I'm just curious as to whether, Dick, you have any other further evidence or proof that other tear-gas canisters may have been fired? REAVIS: Sure, the man is repeating himself. Now the three forms of gas were used. Those used from the CEV vehicles. The gas which starts with a powder was mixed with carbon dioxide, and exactly as he says, it was harmful. But the FBI fired in 400 ferret rounds containing the CS powder, which are mixed with methylene chloride, a common ingredient of paint thinners. We now know that military rounds were used delivering gas in yet a third form. So we've got three forms of this noxious stuff, at least two of which could be called pyrotechnic. So the question of whether or not they set up that building for a fire is very much open. I would like to say, as for the suggestion that the people inside burned themselves to death. We should use common sense. How many people does any of us know who run into burning buildings. Historically, a lot of people have committed suicide for religious reasons. Sampson pulled a building down on himself. The Mossad martyrs slit their throats. The people at Jamestown (sic) took cyanide. These were all painless and quick ways of death -- relatively painless. Death by fire is slow... EPSTEIN: And even the Davidian -- and even the Davidian defenders -- even the Davidian defenders can see that there are tapes which indicate, about a week beforehand, or several days beforehand, that there was some consideration by the Davidians given to setting the place on fire. Look, there really... REAVIS: Yes, they said you guys on the FBI are going to set it on fire to destroy evidence. That's what was said beforehand……

CNN TalkBack Live 9/2/99 CNN Transcript "…REAVIS: The point I'd like to make about this discussion is that, since 1994, they've been a band of Mexican guerrillas holding a part of Chiapas, and the Mexican government hasn't gone to clean them out or dislodge them because it says children will be killed. To do something that results in the death of children is not to save them from anything. We should not have gone in, period. EPSTEIN: Dick, you might be right... REAVIS: The FBI has yet to admit that error. It did not save those children by bringing about their death. …"

CNN TalkBack Live 9/2/99 CNN Transcript "…KEVIN: My question would be, the overwhelming evidence that you speak of: Do we, as the government speaking, actually have proof in recordings of the Branch Davidians saying that they wanted to burn the place up? I mean, do you actually have that voice of the Branch Davidians and David Koresh's followers speaking that they're spreading gas and that they're going to make a fire come about? I mean, do you actually have that on tape? EPSTEIN: Yes, yes, yes, yes. KEVIN: So what's the problem? REAVIS: Have you personally heard those recordings, Mr. Epstein? EPSTEIN: I think the question was -- yes, we did hear the recording. REAVIS: Have you personally heard the recordings? EPSTEIN: Yes, we did hear the recordings. The answer is yes. REAVIS: . OK, I have heard them and they're an audio ink blot. You can't make heads or tail out of what's being said. EPSTEIN: OK, we not only have the recordings, but we have the transcripts of the recordings. REAVIS: I've seen two sets of transcripts, one which says they're starting a fire, and another which gives a completely different interpretation because those tapes are audio ink blot tests……

CNN TalkBack Live 9/2/99 CNN Transcript "…REAVIS: I opened those hearings. I was the first witness. I know what was said there. There is no definitive answer to those audiotapes. As for the people shot, there were 17 people killed with bullets. When you are surrounded by fire hot enough to melt glass, you will shoot yourself and your loved ones, too. EPSTEIN: Rather than trying to leave the building? REAVIS: That's a logical thing. EPSTEIN: Rather than trying to leave the building? REAVIS: They couldn't leave the building, we believe at this point, because the FBI may have been firing at people who left. EPSTEIN: Well, look. There's absolutely no evidence of that, and it's not just the tapes that show evidence, it's the fact that there's gas on clothing. It's the fact that you have previous... REAVIS: Yes, you all had -- the FBI had... EPSTEIN: The day of the conflagration, you have discussions about starting fires. It's the fact that fires started in three places. The aerial view shows that the fire actually started in three different places at the compound... REAVIS: No. EPSTEIN: ... almost simultaneously, within a period of about two minutes, which indicates, not conclusively but pretty persuasively, that the fire was started simultaneously by the Davidians from within the compound. REAVIS: Can I say something about this fire? EPSTEIN: Now, look... BATTISTA: Yes, let me get -- hold on Julian. Let me get Dick to react quickly, then we got to go to break. REAVIS: The government's version of the start of the fire was prepared by an investigator named Paul Gray (ph) in Houston whose wife worked for the ATF. Gray himself once worked in the ATF's office. If you look at the flair tapes, you see the fire start in the gym and shortly afterwards appear at three different spots. The government talks about the three different spots. It doesn't talk about the fire in the gym because it occurs when a tank drives into the gym knocking down walls.

Freeper Lurker 9/3/99 "…Presently, the current Federal Tax on a fully automatic firearm is 200.00. The tax on a shotgun outside the requirements of the law is fifty dollars. (This is the section of the law used against Randy Weaver, but he is another story.) David Koresh was suspected of having the means to assemble 2 fully automatic weapons while at the same time failing to pay the required tax of four hundred dollars. So, because the B.A.T.F. suspected an American Citizen of owing four hundred dollars in taxes, the B.A.T.F. detailed over one hundred heavily armed agents, some armed with machine guns themselves , to kick in the front door to the Mt. Carmel home of David Koresh and his followers. ….At one point, some bright member of the press asked what the seige was costing the U.S. Government. Someone offered that the cost was nearly a million dollars a day. A million dollars a day was being spent to bring in a person suspected of owing the United States Government four hundred dollars. Noone in the press asked any questions regarding the cost vs. benefits of such an operation. It is indeed most likely that noone in the press even knew what Mr. Koresh was actually suspected of doing….."

http://dailynews.yahoo.com/h/nm/19990903/ts/crime_davidians_28.html 9/3/99 "… The new videotape released by the FBI quoted one of its agents in a tank-like Bradley Fighting Vehicle saying, ``Yeah, the military gas did not penetrate that, uh, bunker where the bus was. It bounced off.'' The agent then described moving the vehicle to get a better angle, according to a transcript of the radio traffic recorded on the videotape. An agent in another vehicle agreed about an alternative position. ``Yeah, if you come to the ... (back) side of that structure, I think there's an opening there that you may be able to shoot through -- a doorway,'' according to the transcript. ….. The audio part of the videotape was discontinued at 8:24 a.m. at the request of one of the pilots and was not resumed during the rest of the operation, the FBI said. The FBI Thursday released another videotape that included a conversation of an FBI agent asking for and receiving permission to fire military tear gas at the bunker……Last week, the Justice Department officials said a memo about use of the gas canisters was discovered to have been in the files of the FBI general counsel's office since 1996…."

Scripps Howard News Service Michael Hedges "…``The government has an unfortunate long history of not coming clean with the mistakes it makes which dates back through history,'' said John Lunsford, a researcher with the Coalition for Human Dignity, a Seattle-based group that monitors white-supremacy organizations. Lunsford said the FBI's failure to exercise full disclosure in the Waco operation will vivify some right-wing groups. ``I believe these groups will be emboldened,'' he said. ``They will be able to say, 'I told you so.'''…… And the Libertarian magazine Reason said, ``The Davidians were stigmatized as a dangerous 'doomsday cult' unworthy of respect, muting the public outcry about their mistreatment. They were tarred with unsubstantiated allegations of child abuse and accused of hostile intent because they owned guns.'' …… ``There is also the question as to why the FBI didn't have firefighting equipment available when they apparently knew that the Davidians were prepared to use accelerants,'' Culbertson said. ``And how long was civilian firefighting equipment held up at the FBI checkpoint after the fire started?'' ……"

CNN TalkBack Live 9/3/99 "…THIBODEAU: Well, I think that there's a lot of questions. I mean, I think the FBI has done a great job in several cases throughout American history. However, in this case, I have a lot of questions I'd like to ask. One is -- and I talk about this in "A Place Called Waco." There was also a documentary that was put out called "Waco: the Rules of Engagement," and on that, that we have an FBI infrared video from the plane that was flying above the building, and literally six minutes before the fire begins, on infrared, two explosions show up in an back of the building, in the dog-run area, and they're about a second apart. These explosions are very bright. I'd like to know what those explosions were. It does indicate that one of these fires may have started from these explosion that occurred at the back of the building, So I think everything needs to be rethought, as far as how the fires began and who started the fires. What I can tell you is, I didn't start the fire, I didn't see any of my friends start the fire, and until someone, either in jail or someone that has been released or was never indicted, someone that was inside that day comes up to me and says, David, I had a hand in starting this fire, it's going to be very hard for me to believe that the people inside started that fire. BATTISTA: Well, help us put some perspective on this. How big was this compound? Where were all of you? And so the feeling I'm getting from you is that you don't necessarily know what other people in the building were doing.

CNN TalkBack Live 9/3/99 "…THIBODEAU: That's very true. I mean, when the tanks went in and they started to put the CS gas in and they also started to destroy parts of the building -- which has been in question for a long time, everyone wanted to know how come they finally they started to go in and destroy segments of the building. That was never in the initial plan. When they did that, they cut off certain areas of the building. I could not get to the kitchen area, for example. I was in the chapel area. So you know, I have to acknowledge, I don't know what happened throughout the building. I know what happened in my area. I was in a large area of the building. I know that no one in my area was firing and no one in my area set a fire. But I also have to say that it is possible that it could have happened that way. But I also think that when we take the information, the evidence that has been suppressed from the American public, and put it together, then it becomes a little more suspect. One of those examples, the FBI called Park Memorial Hospital at 6:00 a.m. and asked how many beds were available in their burn units. There's this infra- red video that I had mentioned with the explosion at the back of the building. And also on infra red, we seem to have three shooters at the back of the building that appear that they're shooting from the outside of the building in. We do know that the women and children who died that day were placed under wet blankets. This is -- Dr. Rodney Crow said this. They were put under wet blankets, and the only structure they had to go, the concrete structure, if you want to kill yourself and you're going to burn to death, you don't try to escape by putting yourself under a wet blanket……

CNN TalkBack Live 9/3/99 "…BATTISTA: David, Sean's question: Why did this seemingly peaceful Christian group feel the need to stockpile weapons? THIBODEAU: OK, there was -- I think the gun issue was grossly overblown. I mean, yes, definitely we had firearms in there. A lot of the firearms -- we met a man named Henry McMahon, who was a firearms dealer, and through Henry McMahon, David Koresh and especially Paul Fada (ph), a couple of the other people, started to go to gun shows and learn the business. A lot of these firearms were bought and were sold at gun shows. We had yellow sheets on everything, and three months prior to the BATF attack, the BTF raided Henry McMahon. They were asking him a lot of questions about David Koresh. This came out in the trials in San Antonio. BATTISTA: But why did he feel he needed all those weapons? THIBODEAU: He -- there's -- well, there's a couple of reasons. Number one, we went to gun shows and made a profit buying and selling firearms legally. Number two, there was also -- if you read in the book -- it gets much deeper into the issue of actually being able to protect yourself from what you call "the final days," according to the Scripture. And I don't want to get scriptural. BATTISTA: Didn't that strike anybody in the group, though, as odd? THIBODEAU: No, it didn't. I mean, this is Texas. All of our neighbors had firearms. People came from the community and shot at our firing range. It wasn't something that we thought about demonically at all. It was just something that was a constitutional right. People within Texas would come and shoot with us, and even the BATF agent, who was the undercover agent, came and shot at our firing range. And there's a whole scene I speak about in the book section in the book with him going over some of the firearms with David Koresh

NewsMax.com 9/5/99 "…Newly revealed documents suggest that an elite U.S. military unit became involved in the FBI's 1993 siege at Waco at a far earlier stage than previously believed, the New York Times said on Sunday -- echoing a week-old report by Inside Cover…. Clinton's remarks after the Branch Davidian compound was incinerated clearly indicate that he wanted the military to become involved immediately after the BATF's failed February 28 raid. On April 20, just one day after the FBI ended the Waco standoff with what Attorney General Janet Reno called a "military style" assault, the President explained that there were three questions he had wanted answered before he approved the attack: "The third question I asked was, has the military been consulted? As soon as the initial tragedy came to light in Waco, that's the first thing I asked be done, because it was obvious that this was not a typical law enforcement situation. Military people were then brought in....." (Clinton's Waco press conference) Clinton's explanation begs the question: Did the President, by publicly stating that creating a role for the military at Waco was the "first thing" he wanted done, inadvertently admit to a secret White House directive waiving the Posse Comitatus statute? The law prohibits the U.S. military from active involvement in any domestic law enforcement operation without a presidential waiver. The White House has subsequently denied that Clinton issued any such waiver. The White House's role in the Waco debacle, and what responsibility it may have had for the now confirmed early presence of Special Operations commandos, will be one of the central questions taken up during new Congressional hearings on the 1993 massacre…."

New York Post 9/6/99 Marilyn Rauber "…A filmmaker yesterday claimed he has evidence that the feds blasted "long streams of automatic-weapons fire" at cult leader David Koresh's house as the Texas compound was in flames. Waco documentary maker Michael McNulty also suggested the FBI may have lobbed two fire-making canisters into the main wooden house that day - and said he's begun turning over his material to House GOP investigators…… But McNulty told Fox he has "videotape footage in the immediate aftermath as the fire's being put out" indicating streams of machine-gun fire at the back of the house, preventing Branch Davidians from escaping the building. He also claimed "a combined group of hostage-rescue team members and members of the vaunted Delta Force" fired at least 60 rounds into the compound. McNulty also said he's in the process of analyzing residue on a pair of 40 mm projectiles from the scene, and "there are some indicators ... these projectiles passed through the [main] building." He offered no details…..Meanwhile, The New York Times reported yesterday that elite military observers were at the siege for more than a month and that top Pentagon chiefs were kept briefed…… "

AFP - Agence France Presse 9/5/99 "…Women and children among the 80 dead in the FBI siege at Waco, Texas in 1993, faced the choice of being burned alive in an inferno or shot to death by FBI agents blocking their escape, critics of the siege alleged Sunday. Michael McNulty, producer of a new film on the siege of the Branch Davidian compound, told "Fox New Sunday" talk show he had evidence that FBI sharpshooters were blocking the only exit from the burning building. He said he had footage of "individuals at the back of the building engaged in a gunfight" who were blocking the only escape route unmolested by tanks. "Once that building caught on fire, the women and the children and the adults inside that building had no way out," he said. "They had a choice of being shot to death or burning to death." …..

AFP - Agence France Presse 9/5/99 "…"I think by the end of the day there is a good chance that (the) FBI was getting desperate," said David Hardy, an Arizona attorney investigating the siege. "They had exceeded the orders that they had been given by the attorney general. No one had come out of the building yet. They were going to look like the laughing stocks of the world. "And I think there is a good chance that some people decided to add a few pyrotechnic projectiles into the building to see if fire wouldn't move them out when tear gas had failed." …"

DallasNews.com 9/5/99 Thomas Coolberth "…This is a letter confirming that the U.S. Army took an active role in the siege at Waco. I was stationed at Fort Hood in the 1st Battalion 8th Cavalry at the time of the incident. I had friends in the 1st Battalion 7th Cavalry who confirmed that their unit took part. The armored vehicles in the videotapes that are part of the public record were operated and commanded by active duty soldiers. Does the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms have Bradley fighting vehicles? I don't think so. If you put out a call to your readers I am sure you will receive hundreds of confirming e-mails by former and current soldiers who are more interested in the truth than slaughtering religious wackos. THOMAS COOLBERTH, Ashburnham, Mass."

Ft. Worth Star-Telegram 9/6/99 John Moritz "…What journalists and pundits are calling "shocking revelations" about the use of pyrotechnic grenades and the presence of military forces at the Branch Davidian compound outside Waco on April 19, 1993 sounds more like old news to David Thibodeau. Now 30 years old, and the father of a young daughter, Thibodeau was, on that spring morning, one of nine followers of David Koresh who clawed their way out of the Mount Carmel inferno and scrambled to safety. "I've been disgusted by the way this whole thing has been portrayed by the government and the media for the last six and a half years," said Thibodeau, who lives in Austin and works for a marketing company. "The American people have no idea what really happened out there. I didn't want history to be written that it was just a crazed religious group out in Nowhere, Texas, who were determined to kill themselves." ….. He said he viewed infrared videotape that shows two explosions erupting about 6 minutes before flames began consuming the buildings. He also said that the condition of many of the bodies suggests that the victims had tried to save themselves rather than commit suicide. He also talks of his own escape. When the fire broke out, Thibodeau said, he was praying in a downstairs chapel. With stairwells engulfed in flames, he said, he crawled up a plank to a catwalk above the chapel and darted out through a hole made by the battering ram of a federal tank. "I expected to be shot once I got outside, but I figured it was better than burning up," he said…."

AP Wire 9/6/99 "…Ever since her grandsons were killed in the Oklahoma City bombing, Jannie Coverdale has doubted whether the government has been entirely truthful about what happened. Revelations about the FBI's use of flammable tear gas canisters at the 1993 Branch Davidian standoff in Waco, Texas - accusations previously denied by the government for six years - have raised even more questions, Ms. Coverdale said. ``After what I've heard about Waco, I'm beginning to blame the federal government for my grandchildren dying,'' said Ms. Coverdale, whose grandsons, Aaron and Elijah, were among the 168 people killed in the April 19, 1995, bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building. ``I don't trust the information we've gotten so far about Waco or the information we've gotten on the bombing,'' she said. ``I can't believe what we've been told.'' …."

Washington Times 9/6/99 "…From combined dispatches …..In his new film -- "Waco: A New Revelation" -- Mr. McNulty said he obtained infrared film, taken by an FBI surveillance aircraft at about 9,000 feet, that indicates the Army's secretive Delta Force and FBI agents fired at least 60 rounds into sect leader David Koresh's compound 51 days after the siege started. A tank is seen driving up to the compound and two figures rolling out. Three quick flashes follow. Several other light bursts, all in quick succession, are shown further away from the Davidians' building. Heat signatures picked up by the camera also indicate that Davidians are shooting back, Mr. McNulty said. The clips will appear in his new film, due out later this month…….Two Republican presidential candidates, Sen. Orrin G. Hatch, Utah Republican, and businessman Steve Forbes, said that if they were in the White House, they would fire Attorney General Janet Reno for her handling of Waco and other Justice Department matters. Mr. Hatch, on NBC's "Meet the Press" and CNN's "Late Edition," said the Justice Department, which has authority over the FBI, is "in a shambles" because of poor management……Said Sen. Phil Gramm, Texas Republican: "There's a long series of cases where the attorney general seems to be always the last person to know."….. "

Reuters 9/5/99 "…A Democrat on the Senate Judiciary panel urged Republican chairmen Sunday to postpone planned hearings into an alleged cover-up in the fiery end to the 1993 siege at a religious compound in Texas. Charles Schumer, Democrat of New York, said he had sent a letter Sunday to the Senate and House Judiciary and House Government Reform panel heads asking for a delay in hearings expected to start soon…..""Each party will play its preordained role,'' Schumer said, adding there would be "lots of fighting''….."

Newsweek 9/6/99 Michael Isikoff "…The spent shell was sitting in plain sight. Sifting through the scorched rubble after the government's deadly 1993 raid on the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas, a member of the Texas Rangers was surprised to find the 40mm shell lying on the ground. He showed it to an FBI agent supervising the cleanup. "What's this?" the ranger asked, according to a law-enforcement source. "I'll have to get back to you," the G-man answered. The agent never did. But last week the FBI for the first time confirmed what the Texas Ranger had long ago suspected…..Then why did it take the FBI so long to admit to using them? The bureau insists the reason is that no one ever asked. In the initial post-Waco reviews, investigators repeatedly asked agents if they had used any incendiary devices that might have "caused the fire." The answer, uniformly, was no. Then, last year, freelance journalists sympathetic to the Davidians petitioned the Texas Department of Public Safety - the agency that supervises the Texas Rangers - to inspect the Waco evidence buried in its storage lockers. Public Safety Commissioner James Francis seems to have played the pivotal role in forcing the evidence into view. He ordered the rangers to sort through the boxes and report back. Six weeks ago he had his answers. "My God, this is a problem," Francis recalled saying. Not only did the rangers inform him about the incendiary devices, but also reported that a handful of soldiers from the U.S. Army's supersecret Delta Force may have done more than just observe the operation, as had been previously acknowledged - a discovery that was sure to send conspiracy buffs into a furor. Francis gave the findings to the federal judge presiding over a wrongful-death suit brought against the government by survivors of the siege. …."

Insight Magazine 9/3/99 Jennifer Hickey "… After years of denials, the FBI has said it used flammable tear gas during the siege of the Branch Davidian compound. What does that say about government by the people, for the people? . . . . . . . The network-TV talk shows and the cable airwaves were filled with statements of disbelief, outrage at the apparent duplicity of the FBI and calls for an investigation. By the end of the first week of September, House Government Reform Committee Chairman Dan Burton of Indiana had fired off more than 20 subpoenas to the Clinton-Gore White House, the Justice Department, the Texas Rangers, the CIA and the Department of Defense. The Defense Department is being asked for information about the presence of members of the Army's elite Delta Force and possible violations of the Posse Comitatus Act of 1878, which forbids the use of the military in domestic situations.. . . . Now the latest revelations have prompted a new skepticism about the government's actions at Waco -- one that was absent within weeks of the 1993 events and in the House hearings of 1995. True, at the end of the 51-day standoff, public opinion initially was not with the federal government. According to Justice, phone calls and faxes ran 10-to-1 against the attorney general and the FBI. But after several days of news articles and official statements about alleged Branch Davidian child abuse, weapon stockpiling and the proliferation of cults in America, opinion switched and polls showed that a clear majority of Americans gave their post-hoc blessings to the operation and its outcome.. . . . Despite Reno's acknowledgment of the involvement of the Delta Force in 1993 -- Gen. Peter Schoomacher and Col. Jerry Boynkin, the former commanders of the Delta Force commando teams, assisted in reviewing the siege plan -- it is becoming clear that Congress, the press and the Justice Department failed to follow up and scrutinize the operation exhaustively.

Investors Business Daily 9/7/99 "…The next best thing would be for Reno to step down. She's presided over a law enforcement agency that can't find Chinese spies, won't look at presidential wrongdoing and doesn't remember if it used grenades in an armed confrontation. She's either Clinton's stooge, or a petty bureaucrat in way over her head. We'd guess she's both….. The problems at Justice aren't limited to the Waco incident. Reno has refused to order independent probes into campaign finance irregularities that might implicate Clinton. She interfered with Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr's investigation of the president. Reno has also refused to appoint special investigators for Filegate and Travelgate, leaving those White House scandals for Starr to look at. Under her watch, the Justice Department let a corrupt union's own lawyer head a cleanup effort of that very union. The lawyer, Robert Luskin, has defended Clinton in the media. Sounds like a conflict of interest to us. And is it just a coincidence that Arthur Coia, Luskin's former boss at the Laborers' International Union of North America, has been a leading fund-raiser for the Democratic National Committee? …."

Washington Post 9/4/99 Edward Walsh and Richard Leiby "…The grainy, black-and-white videotape, shot from a surveillance aircraft through wispy clouds that sometimes obscured the ground, also recorded ground radio traffic among FBI agents. In an earlier portion of the tape that was released Thursday, Richard M. Rogers, the assistant special agent in charge of the FBI's Hostage Rescue Team, can be heard authorizing the use of a military tear gas cartridge in an attempt to penetrate the entrance to an underground storm shelter that was about 50 yards from the main compound structure. Rogers gave his authorization at 7:48 a.m. In the later portion of the tape that was released yesterday, the operator of a Bradley Fighting Vehicle designated "Charlie 1" reported to Rogers at 8:08 a.m. that the attempt had failed. "Yeah, the military gas did not penetrate that bunker where the bus was," the operator told Rogers. "It bounced off." Later in the recorded conversation, the operator of another Bradley vehicle designated "Echo 1" made suggestions on how "Charlie 1" could reposition itself to get a better shot at the target. But the outcome of later attempts to penetrate the shelter using military tear gas cartridges was not recorded on videotape. According to the FBI, at 8:24 a.m. the audio portion of the videotape was disconnected at the request of the aircraft's pilot….The M651 military tear gas cartridges that the FBI now acknowledges using at Waco usually are made of aluminum or some other hard metal and contain CS in a solid form. After they are fired from a grenade launcher, a fuse inside the cartridge ignites and begins turning the solid material into a gas that escapes through a vent in the bottom of the cartridge….."

Washington Post 9/4/99 Edward Walsh and Richard Leiby "…According to Charles Cutshaw, an editor of Jane's Defence Information and an expert on this kind of weapon, these military tear gas cartridges are not intended to start fires. He said he was not aware of any studies or reports on how often such cartridges may have caused fires. Cutshaw said a photograph of one of the spent military cartridges at Waco showed that the surface was not scorched or blistered, suggesting that the cartridge did not become hot enough to ignite a fire. "But let's presume that instead of landing on a hard surface, it landed in a pile of hay. Then I can assure you it would start a fire. If it was fired into a closed space with fuel fumes, say, from gasoline, it could start a fire. In fact, it could cause an explosion. Without knowing further details, I can't tell you whether that round started a fire at Waco." …."

New York Times 9/4/99 Melinda Henneberger "…At this morning's weekly press briefing, Attorney General Janet Reno answered virtually every question by saying she was "dedicated to finding the truth," wanted to "use the process to get to the truth" and planned to "continue to pursue the truth." In half an hour, she referred to the truth a total of 25 times…… Democrats also seem frustrated by Ms. Reno's repeated insistence in times of crisis that while she is ultimately responsible, she is also often out of the loop, misinformed or, as she suggested last week, deceived by her own people…… Kristol went on to say that conservatives were so fed up with Ms. Reno that they were relatively uncritical of Director Louis J. Freeh of the F.B.I. simply because he was perceived as anti-Reno…… After ordering the attack, which was supposed to force the Branch Davidians out of their compound but instead led to their deaths, Ms. Reno said that making that call had been "the hardest decision in the world to make" and was "based on what we knew then." "Based on what we know now," she said immediately after the attack, "it was obviously wrong." …."

Daily Oklahoman - Scripps Howard News Service 9/3/99 John Parker "…It was April 1994, a year after the Branch Davidian standoff ended in disaster, when Bob Ricks had his chance to quiz Attorney General Janet Reno. He had finished his job as chief FBI spokesman during the 51-day siege outside Waco, Texas, but it still bothered him that the Justice Department later ordered agents, he said, not to speak about the operation. Reno was in Oklahoma City to promote a congressional crime bill and met with employees of the local FBI office. ``I said, 'You probably don't realize it, but in the Midwest, Waco is still extremely a big deal out here, and it's the subject of much conversation. As you know, we've been ordered not to respond or say anything, and I think that that could ultimately end up being a problem,''' Ricks said Friday…… The ex-agent said Reno replied, "I don't think the American people care about Waco anymore." A Justice Department spokesman said Reno denies making the comment……"A lot of the things that are being uncovered would have been normally uncovered after an after-action critique," he said. He speculates that the critique was barred "because the thing ended so disastrously." "Everyone wanted to walk away from it and pretend it didn't occur," he said. He also said the FBI's hostage rescue team knew that the canisters had been deployed, but Justice Department attorneys handling civil lawsuits rising from the standoff "did not appreciate what they'd been told or made different decisions." ……As a general rule, government attorneys typically ask employees not to speak about incidents that may end up in civil litigation. Ricks said the gag order was imposed about six months after the Waco incident ended…… Could faster, fuller government disclosure have prevented the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building bombing and the deaths of 168 people?…."

New York Times 9/4/99 David Johnston Neil Lewis "….Under a welter of questions, Ms. Reno -- who has taken responsibility for the Government's actions in Waco, but has blamed the Branch Davidian leader, David Koresh, and other cultists for starting the fire -- said that she still believed that the evidence pointed to him. But she expressed her willingness to re-examine any relevant information….."I think that's what every piece of information I have seen clearly shows," Ms. Reno said of her conclusion about Koresh's culpability. "And it is important, again, to put it in perspective. But it is also important that we pursue any confusion, any question, in order to provide the American people with the truth." ….Asked whether she would resign, Ms. Reno said she would accept any outcome that came in the inquiry. "I'm going to pursue the truth," she said. "If the truth shows that I've done something wrong, then I will accept the consequences…… "

Associated Press 9/5/99 Jim Abrams "…Lawmakers split Sunday over who should take the blame for foul-ups in the Waco investigation, with Republicans demanding that Attorney General Janet Reno resign while Democrats asked why Reno should be held responsible for FBI mistakes…… The New York Times reported Sunday that the Pentagon's Special Operations Command was monitoring the situation virtually from the start of the 51-day siege, and was briefing the Defense secretary and other senior Defense officials….. Hatch, on NBC and CNN's "Late Edition'' said that while the Justice Department, which has authority over the FBI, is "in a shambles'' because of poor management, Freeh is the "single best'' FBI director he has seen…..House Government Reform Committee Chairman Dan Burton, R-Ind., who plans hearings on the Waco question, pointed out on CBS "Face the Nation'' that Freeh was not director at the time of the siege and "Louis Freeh is not a big problem here.'' …."

AP 9/6/99 Robin McDowell "…Investigators are reviewing footage obtained by a Colorado filmmaker to see if it shows U.S. armed forces firing into David Koresh's compound at the close of the Waco standoff, a U.S. congressman says. ``We have those tapes and have given them to two experts to analyze,'' Rep. Dan Burton, chairman of the House Government Reform Committee, said Friday. ``Two separate entities are looking at them frame-by-frame.''…… Meanwhile in Texas, a federal judge handling a lawsuit brought by survivors of the siege was forced to intervene after federal agents tried to keep Texas Rangers from entering a Waco storage facility to search for evidence, the Dallas Morning News reported in Saturday's editions. Agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms assigned to maintain custody of a storage locker containing evidence recovered from Koresh's compound reportedly told the Rangers that their lawyers in Washington had ordered them to deny the Rangers entry, the newspaper said. Law enforcement officials in Texas, speaking on the condition of anonymity, told the newspaper that the Rangers were allowed to search boxes only after U.S. District Judge Walter Smith was called. The Rangers were looking for a spent pyrotechnic device that was photographed in 1993 by investigators at the Branch Davidian compound. Texas officials said they did not find the missing round at the storage locker……If it turns out that military forces did open fire without proper authorization, ``then those who did it will and should be prosecuted,'' said Burton…."

9/4/99 Reuters via NewsEdge Corporation –"… A former FBI spokesman was quoted Saturday as saying he had urged Attorney General Janet Reno to allow publication of more information about the standoff with the Branch Davidians in Waco, Texas, but she had rejected the idea…..Ricks said he told Reno he didn't like rules preventing more open discussion of the ill-fated siege and that their silence ''could ultimately end up being a problem.'' …..``I think the government could have done a much better job in providing full disclosure,'' Ricks told the Oklahoman…… "

 

FrontPageMag.com 9/4/99 Chris Weinkopf "…WHAT COULD BE WORSE, an incredulous Matt Drudge asked independent Waco investigator Mike McNulty, than the prospect of the top-secret Delta Force, in violation of federal law, besieging a compound full of women and children? How about the Delta Force, McNulty answered, "shooting them as they try to escape the burning building?" That's worse-a lot a worse-and one senses that as more news about the Waco tragedy and cover-up sees the light of day, it will get worse still. Drudge interviewed McNulty Friday at a special "Drudge Report" panel at The Weekend in Colorado Springs, CO. There, McNulty, producer of the 1997 Oscar-nominated documentary, Waco: The Rules of Engagement, discussed its upcoming sequel, Waco: The New Revelation, to be released later this month. He also gave the audience a sneak preview-it was very disturbing. The new film continues where the last one left off, with experts analyzing infrared footage that seems to show federal agents firing machine guns into the burning compound. Only this time, McNulty and company have got their hands on an earlier-generation video, which means that the images are clearer. Now, viewers can see the silhouettes of two agents dropping out of a tank, onto the ground, and blasting away into the building's doorways. That would appear to contradict the FBI's longstanding pledge that its officers "never fired a single shot," until one considers the Clintonian capacity for parsing words-the machine guns fired several shots at once….."

FrontPageMag.com 9/4/99 Chris Weinkopf "…The Davidians, to be sure, were not innocent bystanders. McNulty has no doubt that they did their part to create the fire. He says that they believed, on the basis of David Koresh's bizarre prophesizing, that God would use flames to protect them. As FBI-bugged conversations from within the compound demonstrate, and as survivors' testimony (that McNulty promises to include in the upcoming film) confirms, Davidians spread gasoline and other accelerants throughout the building. Federal agents listened to these conversations in real time. They knew that the Davidians were dousing their home in gas. McNulty says he has tape of officers, shortly before the conflagration erupted, dressed in fire-proof suits and wearing oxygen tanks (not just gas masks, which are necessary for protection against the tear gas). By all indications, they knew that the compound could explode, yet they fired pyrotechnic devices inside nonetheless. They punctured holes throughout the structure, thereby providing the inferno with the necessary ventilation to spread quickly. When the blaze began, they forbade fire trucks from coming to the scene. Most disturbingly, the evidence suggests that they kept innocents inside-at the barrel of a gun….."

FrontPageMag.com 9/4/99 Chris Weinkopf "…When he and his crew searched the Waco evidence, locked away in the Texas Department of Public Safety, they found more pyrotechnic shells, which had been discovered in the vicinity of the fires. Someone had mislabeled the equipment as gun-silencers, and were it not for McNulty's dirt-digging, the public would have never known the difference…..Still, culpability for the disaster, or at least for its cover-up, clearly extends into the upper echelons of the federal government, with a paper trail leading all the way to the First Couple's White House residence. According to the testimony of Vincent Foster's widow, the late Clinton Administration official felt "personally responsible" for the Waco carnage. After Foster committed suicide, McNulty reports, a White House aide saw the First Lady's secretary, Maggie Williams, taking files-one marked "Waco"-from his office. Foster's intern testifies to receiving those documents, and bringing them to Mrs. Clinton's personal quarters…".

Drudge Report 9/4/99 "…THE NEW YORK TIMES is preparing a blockbuster story for Sunday editions detailing secret government documents that now show a much greater -- and earlier -- Pentagon role at Waco than previously reported! The TIMES' Philip Shenon is revealing that the Pentagon's elite Special Operations Command -- based at Florida's MacDill Air Force Base -- was involved in the Waco seige for more than a month before the final assault, and that the Special Operations Command fully briefed the Secretary of Defense and the Joint Chiefs of Staff on breaking events at Waco. One Special Operations Command report is dated March 2, 1993 -- only three days after the siege began! Also: "The report is stamped 'secret specat,' or special category, which would have limited its distribution to a select group of government officials with security clearances." …."

ABCnews.com 9/3/99 Barbara Starr "…Did the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms try to lure the military into getting involved with Waco? Clearly some in the military think so. While Pentagon officials prepare to be grilled by Congress this month on Army involvement in the deadly siege, two articles in military journals suggest a long-running sense of unease within some military quarters about the operation. In the articles, one published in 1997 and the second earlier this year, two officers allege that the ATF misled the military in early 1993 about activities in the Branch Davidian compound to get the military to play a role in the operation. Both officers suggest the ATF tried to encourage the military to skirt the Posse Comitatus Act of 1878, which prohibits the military from playing a role in civilian law enforcement. They allege the agency tried to exploit an exception in the act: a provision for military training and support for counter-drug missions in the United States…."

ABCnews.com 9/3/99 Barbara Starr "…In the autumn 1997 issue of the Army War College Quarterly, retired Army Col. Thomas Lujan wrote that in early 1993, the military received an ATF request for help against a methamphetamine laboratory located on the outskirts of Waco, Texas - the Branch Davidian compound. "The request detailed the needs of the BATF: military training in the specific areas of medical treatment, communications procedures, operational plan development, review, and approval, and 'room clearing discriminate fire operations,' termed 'close quarter combat' by the military," says Lujan, a former top military lawyer at U.S. Special Operations Command at MacDill AFB in Tampa, Fla. More importantly, he writes, the ATF requested that Army medics and communicators actually accompany them to the forward staging base if not on the actual mission. "Clearly the request was more expansive than those normally received," he wrote. The original request was approved by the military's Joint Task Force 6, which oversees counter-drug support along the southern U.S. border, and a special operations unit of the Army was temporarily assigned to JTF-6. …."

ABCnews.com 9/3/99 Barbara Starr "…But the Army came dangerously close to illegal involvement, Lujan contends. He says the ATF failed to make an acceptable case for military support from JTF-6 because it cited alleged drug activity from 1987 to justify action in 1993.... This could easily have been the single most debilitating event to occur within the Army since the tragedy at My Lai." Lujan's assessment is underscored in the March/April 1999 issue of Military Review. In that article, Col. Sean Byrne, who has worked in special operations for many years, also says that "the drug connection BATF used to justify its request for military support was not valid." He claims that "military lawyers literally saved the day when they conducted a further legal review that resulted in the request not being acted on. Had they not questioned what appeared to be a routine request, JTF-6 most certainly would have been involved in a clear Posse Comitatus violation and been accessories in a tragedy that ended in the deaths of 76 civilians." …"

ABCnews.com 9/3/99 Barbara Starr "…On April 14, 1993, then- Brig. Gen. Peter Schoomaker and then-Col. William Boykin were called to the Justice Department to meet with Attorney General Janet Reno. Both men had previously commanded Army special forces and were highly experienced in counter-terrorism and hostage rescue operations. Reno wanted their assessment on the FBI proposal to end the siege. Schoomaker had toured the site by helicopter the day before. While they offered some technical advice on the effects of using tear gas, Schoomaker has told ABCNEWS he declined to formally review the plan because it was not a military operation. Schoomaker, who is now a four-star general and the commander of the U.S. Special Operations Command has said it was "inappropriate" for him to get involved…."

Foxnews 9/4/99 Robin McDowel "…Agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms assigned to maintain custody of a storage locker containing evidence recovered from Koresh's compound reportedly told the Rangers that their lawyers in Washington had ordered them to deny the Rangers entry, the newspaper said. Law enforcement officials in Texas, speaking on the condition of anonymity, told the newspaper that the Rangers were allowed to search boxes only after U.S. District Judge Walter Smith was called. The Rangers were looking for a spent pyrotechnic device that was photographed in 1993 by investigators at the Branch Davidian compound. Texas officials said they did not find the missing round at the storage locker….McNulty, the filmmaker, claimed to participants at a Republican retreat Friday that his footage indicates that the Army's secretive Delta Forces fired at least 60 rounds into Koresh's compound 51 days after the siege started on Feb. 28, 1993….."

The Cincinnati Post 9/4/99 Dan Thomasson Scripps Howard News Service "…The crisis in confidence now confronting the FBI has been a long time coming, but it could have been headed off if the Justice Department had insisted that it submit to an outside investigation of the Waco tragedy six years ago….. Was the FBI irresponsible in its decision to try to force the religious nuts out of their illegal arsenal? That seems obvious now. But actually it was obvious then. A green-as-a-gourd attorney general capitulated to pressure from militant FBI officials who ignored warnings from their own psychological profilers that Koresh was a time bomb and shouldn't be pushed….. But rapid growth in the number of agents brought on by almost unfettered expansion of responsibilities has left the FBI facing one high-profile embarrassment after another. An FBI agent shoots a mother in the infamous Ruby Ridge affair; the bureau, under directions from the highest command, goes after the wrong man in the Atlanta bombing case; an arrogant FBI refuses to accept local law-enforcement pleas that the wrong suspects are in custody in a national park murder case, resulting in the death of another woman by the real killer; the Texas Rangers bring in a notorious serial killer as the bureau stands by in frustration, and on and on….."

New York Times 9/5/99 Philip Shenon "…The Pentagon's elite Special Operations Command sent observers to the siege of the Branch Davidian compound in Texas more than a month before the final assault on the compound, suggesting that military commandos had a far longer and closer involvement in the disastrous 1993 operation than previously divulged, according to declassified Government documents. The documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act also show for the first time that officials at the highest levels of the Defense Department, including Secretary of Defense Les Aspin and the Joint Chiefs of Staff, were briefed by the Special Operations Command about the events near Waco. The command, which is based at MacDill Air Force Base in Florida, oversees the military's most secretive commando squads, including the Army's Delta Force and the Navy Seals, and the documents suggest that the command was monitoring the situation virtually from the start of the 51-day siege. The command's spokesmen did not return calls for comment on the documents….."

New York Times 9/5/99 Philip Shenon "…Clinton Administration officials, aware of the severe legal restrictions on the use of American troops in the United States, have long said that the military's role in the siege was purely advisory to law-enforcement agencies, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms….. A report issued last month by the General Accounting Office, the accounting arm of Congress, which examined the military's role in Waco, did not contradict the F.B.I. account, but did find that the military had provided about $1 million in equipment, supplies and electronic surveillance gear to the F.B.I. and the A.T.F., which had launched an ill-fated arrest raid on the compound in February 1993. ….Although Administration officials have previously acknowledged that three soldiers assigned to Delta Force were at the cult compound on the day of the fiery raid as observers, the documents show that the first Special Operations monitors actually went there more than a month earlier, and that their findings were reported to Washington and to the Joint Chiefs of Staff…."

New York Times 9/5/99 Philip Shenon "…In a report to the Joint Chiefs and the F.B.I. in Washington that was dated March 2, 1993, commanders of the Special Operations Command said they had carried out "observation of operations in Waco, Tex." ….. The report is stamped "secret specat," or special category, which would have limited its distribution to a select group of Government officials with security clearances. The identity of the monitors sent to Texas and their ranks were not revealed……In a report dated March 30, nearly three weeks before the final assault on the compound, the Special Operations Command responded to an "F.B.I. request for assistance" at the site. The exact nature of the request is not clear in the heavily censored copy of the document that was released by the Defense Department. But the request clearly was important because the report prepared by the Special Operations Command was forwarded to the highest levels of the Pentagon, including Defense Secretary Aspin, and to the Joint Chiefs, then led by Gen. Colin Powell…."

 

New York Times 9/5/99 Charles McCarry "…The sheer excess of all this does not alter the fact that something terrible took place in Waco. Those who think that the United States Government is the Dark Side's outpost in this galaxy may not have been surprised when they saw pictures of an M-60 tank equipped with a battering ram attacking a civilian structure, which also happened to be occupied by a religious community, but I certainly was. Earlier in the siege I had been astonished at reports that Federal agents had played recordings of the screams of dying rabbits as part of an ongoing war of nerves intended to persuade the cult's leader, David Koresh, and his principal aides to surrender. I simply didn't know that Federal law enforcement officers did things like that. What possessed the Government -- and it is well to remember that the F.B.I. and the other Federal agents present were acting under the authority of the Attorney General and, ultimately, the President -- to make such an unprecedented show of force? …..It is true that crimes had been committed. People inside the compound had fired on and killed four agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms who had tried to arrest cult members on charges of breaking Federal firearm laws. But most of the rest -- the 80 or so who died in the fire, including 21 children -- were guilty of nothing more than putting their lives in the hands of a religious fanatic. That was an unwise thing to do, but such follies are protected by the First Amendment of the Constitution and this particular one, in itself, threatened no one…. "

Doug Fiedor 9/5/99 Doug Fiedor "…The news made me so proud I dug through my stuff to find my old buddy's badge. Maybe I just wanted to hold it, but I used the excuse that it might need polishing, or something. He gave me the badge just before he died. I always meant to send it back to his department, but never seemed to get around to it. This was a guy who looked sort of like an old John Wayne -- tall, but you just know he must have done a lot of hard work in his life. I met him in a Michigan bar one night, many years ago. During a bar brawl. As it turned out, we both knew the establishment's owner. When the fight started, I meandered over to the far end of the bar -- down where the older man was talking with the owner -- to stay away from the action. The man yelled at them to stop. Foolish of the old man, I thought. Then, he looked at the owner and asked if he should stop it. The next thing I knew, this old guy gets up, briskly walks to the middle of the action and decks the two biggest guys. Everything stopped and he came back and sat down. That was it. We were introduced. He said he was retired. Over the next few weeks, we became friends. I was somewhat good with a handgun. He made me look like a Cub Scout at a pistol range. I knew dozens of "come-along" holds, he knew dozens more. I knew boxing and Judo, he quickly showed me how to make that knowledge inoperative. I noticed most of what was happening around me, he missed nothing. He was a retired Texas Ranger. An officer with a quarter century of street experience. He died before the Waco killings, and I'm almost glad. If there are more like him down there in Texas, I can imagine the string of expletives over the years. The Texas Rangers screwed up. They allowed those BATF cowboys to attack Texas citizens. Then, they allowed the FBI military squad-fire team and the Army Special Forces to come in and kill even more Texas citizens….. In a nutshell, what we saw at Waco was government totally out of control. A group of thugs, with badges, assaulted people who were not bothering anyone. Government agents tried a military-style sneak attack using aircraft, automatic weapons, and grenades. The people defended themselves, as was their right. The BATF was routed. So, Hillary sent in the FBI military trained squad fire team and the Army Special Forces. And, as per their training, they killed everyone they could. Then, they covered up as much of the evidence as they could. Buried it. Burned it. Destroyed it. But, like the people, not all of it went away. Suddenly, some Texas Rangers got religion, or something. They started looking at the "evidence." Expletives flowed all around for a while. They had been negligent. They allowed this to happen on their watch. Now, they want to "fix" it. It's about damn time! …."

Ft. Worth Star-Telegram 9/5/99 Barry Shlachter "…What is clear is that official Washington has lost credibility over recent admissions about the fiery end of the Waco standoff and that the fringe patriot movement has gotten a boost, said Mark Potok, a spokesman for the Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks extremist organizations. Faith in government was already at a low ebb, Potok said……A 1997 survey conducted jointly by Democratic and Republican pollsters, found that 76% of Amerians distrusted the government. By comparison 61% expressed such distrust after the Watergate scandal of the early 1970s. The new revelations about Waco "have provided more fuel to the anti-government movement than anything we've seen in a while," Potok said by telephone from Montgomery, Ala. "I think this is a disaster." ….In cyberspace, there is an exultant air on such anti-government Web sites as FreeRepublic.com, where participants have long posted their suspicions about the official version of the standoff. "They feel they've been vindicated, big time," said Connie Hair, a spokeswoman for the site, which has seen daily "hits" jump from 70,000 to 100,000 since the latest revelations about the Branch Davidian siege. …." [NOTE: The error was corrected by Connie Hair. Free Republic is anti-corruption, not anti-government.]

Washington Weekly 9/5/99 Edward Zehr "…Burning, burning, burning. The embers of Waco flared up again in late August as the carefully crafted government coverup, bearing the imprimatur of the mainstream press, continued to crumble in the light of disclosures from a soon-to-be-released film by Mike McNulty, "Waco: A New Revelation." ….Survivors of the Waco conflagration have told of seeing "Ferret rounds" embedded in the walls emitting smoke, or darting around on the floor. But this is not what a "Ferret round" does. David T. Hardy, a civil rights attorney who, together with McNulty, helped initiate the events that have broken through the coverup, and has assembled a vast amount of information on the Waco holocaust, wrote in a paper titled "Use of CS Gas at Waco": "It is descriptive of the Federal Laboratories' "Flite-Rite" and other pyrotechnic CS rounds. These spray CS by the burning of their contents, spewing the result out the tail and through side ports, and are designed to heat up and skitter in order to make it difficult to pick them up and hurl them back. If they were used, the fact would be extremely significant. Pyrotechnic CS rounds are banned for use against buildings precisely because they cause fires." McNulty told Drudge that "what they haven't answered is questions about other devices that were found in the rubble at the points of origin of the fire like this." A number of such expended pyrotechnic rounds were found in the debris of the burned-out compound near the locations where the fires are said to have started. The official explanation is that they had been there since the initial assault on the compound by the BATF, some 50 days previous….. The attorney also indicated that a preliminary investigation conducted on behalf of the plaintiffs suggests that the federal officers used more than the two pyrotechnic devices they have admitted to firing thus far. "Further exploration will show that the government used other pyrotechnic devices on the final day," Caddell said, adding that "infra-red video tapes taken on the final day show that weapons were shot into Mount Carmel in an effort to keep the members in the compound." More specifically, a "former Defense Department expert" asserts in McNulty's film that flashes of light visible on videotapes of the assault "are gunfire directed at the Branch Davidians from FBI helicopters and government personnel," in the words of the Dallas Morning News. The film alleges that the firing was done by "Delta force personnel deployed alongside members of the FBI's hostage rescue team." ….."

Washington Weekly 9/5/99 Edward Zehr "…Although mainstream media spin-mongrels are still keeping it under their hats, a cameo appearance is expected at the trial of the Davidian lawsuit by professional assassin Lon Horiuchi, the big, brave "fibbie" who blasted Mrs. Randal Weaver's brains out at Ruby Ridge as she crouched beside the doorway of her home holding a baby in her arms. Oh yes, Lon was at Waco as well, along with the Ninja warriors of Delta Force and the British SAS. The government has "vehemently" denied that the FBI fired a single shot during the siege. So why did they need Horiuchi? One skeptic has suggested that the FBI needed a hit-man on the scene who wouldn't flinch at shooting women. Horiuchi is the only individual named as a defendant in the lawsuit. Whacking people for fun and profit is not without its downside. Mr. Horiuchi was indicted by the State of Idaho for slaughtering Mrs. Weaver, but the courts ruled that the feds had jurisdiction in the case. It's the Supremacy Clause, you know. Under Article VI of the Constitution the federal government has dibs on trying federal employees who slaughter its citizens, or so the courts would have us believe. Needless to say, Lon walked soon after the case was transferred to the federal courts. When, under the Clinton administration, has the federal government ever gone after wrong-doers? It's always the whistle-blowers who get burned, isn't that right, Mr. Trulock? …"

Washington Weekly 9/5/99 Edward Zehr "…The reverberations from that pyrotechnic gas canister in McNulty's film continue to spread outward, setting off sympathetic vibrations in their wake. The foreman of the jury that convicted eight members of the Branch Davidian sect on charges resulting from the federal siege at Waco recently said in an interview with WOAI radio in San Antonio that they should all get new trials in light of the admissions by federal authorities. Sarah Bain told the radio audience, "The question never was settled in our minds during the trial as to exactly who started that fire. Most of us had some doubts that the Branch Davidians were responsible for mass suicide." Although the FBI still maintains that the firing of pyrotechnic devices into the compound was unrelated to the conflagration, Bain observed that, "Some of the allegations were that the FBI may have done something to start the fire, but prosecutors at our trial spent a lot of time trying to prove that the FBI was innocent, so the truth never did come out." ….Bain concluded: "All the evidence that was gathered that caused them to be put in prison was gathered after the fire. Since it now appears that some of the evidence may have been misidentified and mislabeled, and possibly the origin of that fire is now in question, it seems that they might rightly ask for a new trial." …"

Washington Weekly 9/5/99 Edward Zehr "…The Davidians planted the seeds of their own destruction when they began acquiring a cache of firearms as a result of their inclination to see things in apocalyptic terms. They felt that they would one day need them for self-defense. This placed them on a collision course with the PC fanatics who share an irrational, hysterical aversion to firearms and consider self-defense to be somehow subversive of the New Order as they envision it. Add to this a cynical, scheming cabal of bureaucratic mediocrities, armed to the teeth and vested with the authority of the federal government, i.e. the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, and the result is an irrepressible conflict between two self-fulfilling prophecies. The PC power-elite were convinced -- as a matter of immutable dogma -- that the Davidians represented a menace to "public safety" and the Davidians were equally convinced that they were the potential victims of official repression. In time, the assumption of the Davidians was to prove completely accurate. Once the conflict was joined, most mainstream journalists hastened to trumpet the official government propaganda line that the Davidians were, to use the words of Gary Null: "a Jonestown-like suicide cult down in Texas headed by a psychopathic megalomaniac, David Koresh, a modern-day self-proclaimed messiah... He had a tremendous arms cache... His Branch Davidian cult abused children... They were willing to take over the town of Waco... They were defiant of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, and of the FBI... They were planning to commit mass suicide..." Naturally the public believed it implicitly. There was no other information to compare it with. In modern, imperial Amerika there never is -- unless you are one of those net-surfing, conspiratorial weirdos who want to overthrow the government and are probably into all manner of unsavory practices as well….."

Washington Weekly 9/5/99 Edward Zehr "…The assault video, that made the evening news from Canarsey to Calcutta, shows four BATF agents climbing up on the roof of the single-story part of the building, whereupon one of them lobs a smoke grenade into a second-story window in an adjoining part of the structure and three of them enter the building through the window. The fourth man throws another (smoke?) grenade into the room and fires a machine gun through the window. The voice-over informs us that the three agents seen entering the window were killed. Why am I not surprised? Firing a machine gun into a smoke-filled room that three agents have only just entered? Bullet holes appeared in the wall and the fourth man was hit. Did any of the three agents in the building return fire? If so, they could hardly be blamed. This is surely one of the most bizarre bits of "police work" ever filmed…."

Washington Weekly 9/5/99 Edward Zehr "…Danny Coulson, the former FBI official who had Attorney General Reno bouncing off the ceiling with his casual admission that the FBI had fired pyrotechnic rounds into the Branch Davidian compound, and his further speculation that this might even have started the fire, initiated the current round of telling tales out of school. But then Gene Cullen, the former CIA officer mentioned above, went to the Dallas Morning News and blabbed with apparent insouciance about being told of the Waco operation by "Delta operatives" with whom he had met in Bangkok: "They said there were about 10 guys, fully armed, fully operational, they were ready for war," he said. Cullen added that the Delta types were "present, up front and close" giving a hand to the FBI in their massive tear-gassing of the Branch Davidian compound. "I was surprised at the amount of involvement they had," Cullen guilelessly remarked. They apparently told him that one of the Delta commandos "was helping drive a Bradley Fighting Vehicle" at Waco. In point of fact, Cullen told of hearing the "same basic story" independently on "three or four occasions" -- all from different Delta operatives in various overseas locations. Cullen's story seems to be supported by James B. Francis Jr., chairman of the Texas Department of Public Safety, who told the Dallas newspaper, "'I'm advised there is some evidence that may corroborate' the allegation that Delta Force participated in the assault." That wasn't the half of it…."

Washington Weekly 9/5/99 Edward Zehr "…A May 1993 memo to the Army Special Forces command, which includes Delta Force, said that three Delta Force personnel were present "as observers" at Waco when the final assault was made. But Mr. Francis says that Texas law enforcement officials have evidence that there were more than three Delta operatives present. "I have been advised that there are some police officers who have developed some evidence that needs looking into with regard to what the role of Delta Force was at the Branch Davidian compound," said Francis, adding that "I think it's a subject that the FBI director and the attorney general need to look into. The $64 question is whether they were advisory or operational, and I think some of the evidence is problematical."

Washington Weekly 9/5/99 Edward Zehr "…Telling the court that it did not wish to bear responsibility for withholding evidence, the TDPS asked the judge to take custody of the evidence, offering to file the entire two rooms full of documents and other items, weighing 12 tons, with the court. In addition to documents, Mr. Francis explained, the evidence included projectiles that had been fired by government agents into the Branch Davidian compound from M-79 grenade launchers used by the FBI. These include pyrotechnic CS gas rounds which expel the tear gas by burning a gas-producing substance. Warnings are prominently displayed on the tear gas canisters that they are flammable and must not be used inside buildings. Francis said that he had told the Rangers not to allow the FBI access to the evidence rooms until the evidence is secured by the court. TDPS officials said they wanted the evidence to be taken from their custody because they suspected that the Justice Department was using their possession of the evidence as a pretext to avoid giving the public access to it under federal public records laws, according to the Dallas newspaper…."

Washington Weekly 9/5/99 Edward Zehr "…On the very same Tuesday, federal prosecutor Bill Johnston told The Dallas Morning News he felt an irresistible compulsion to publicly warn Attorney General Reno that Justice Department lawyers had for a long time been withholding evidence that federal agents had fired pyrotechnic tear gas rounds into the Branch Davidian compound at Waco. He told the newspaper that this compulsion had become irresistible after he had been given a 5-year-old document on the uses of "military gas" by the FBI at Waco on April 19, 1993. He became concerned, said Johnston, after noticing that the document, which summarized an interview with members of the FBI's hostage rescue team, "included handwritten notations suggesting that it be kept from anyone outside the department's legal staff," according to the Dallas newspaper. Johnston identified the source of the notations as the Justice Department's civil torts section, the very organization that is defending the government in the $100 million wrongful death lawsuit brought on behalf of survivors of the Waco holocaust. He elaborated: "I have evidence that these notes were in the possession of the torts branch. I know that the lawsuit began to focus on these issues of whether pyrotechnics were used several years ago, and the plaintiff's attorneys, who were alleging their use, specifically requested any documents the government had like this." It is an elementary point of federal law that when a plaintiff in a lawsuit requests the disclosure of pertinent evidence such as this, the defendant's lawyers must make it available. Not to do so is considered a gross breach of legal ethics (simply not done, old boy) and calls for disciplinary action from the court. But Johnston goes on to say: "I know that the plaintiffs never got the document once its full importance was known. And I now wonder whether the attorney general had knowledge of these. I'll bet Ms. Reno would have liked to have known long ago what this document contained." If this seems outrageous, consider the following: Johnston says the document indicates that he was present at the interview when agents told of using "military gas rounds." Although the Dallas Morning News never quite gets around to explaining the implication of this terminology, military gas rounds = pyrotechnic rounds, because military tear gas rounds use pyrotechnics to expel the gas. Okay? Thus, Johnston says, the document was "a shot across the bow, some attempt to warn me," because he had recently been involved in an investigation by the Texas Rangers that produced conclusive evidence that the feds had fired munitions into the Davidian compound that were capable of starting the fire. Or, to put is succinctly, the Justice Department attempted to secure Johnston's silence by using blackmail.

 

http://fps1999.webjump.com 9/2/99 John Culbertson "…FRONTLINE has obtained documents that show yet another component of the puzzle that we see unfolding about us. Documents that have been obtained by FRONTLINE show that the US Military destroyed "all files" concerning the support mission at Waco on or about October 1, 1994 about a year and a half after the fire that destroyed the Davidian compound and almost a year before Congressional hearings into the series of events now characterized as Waco. In other words important files were discovered during the course of a Congressional investigation. The document, a United States Army Special Forces Command "Staff Action Summary Sheet" on the subject of the "DISPOSITION OF FILES REGARDING USASFC COUNTERDRUG SUPPORT IN WACO. TEXAS" is dated November 21, 1994 is a routine enough report…… But the routine nature changes when one discovers in item 2 "DISCUSSION" that "All files concerning this mission support have been destroyed on or about 1 October, 1994." FRONTLINE contacted military affairs expert Lt. Col. Roger Charles (USMC Ret.) who inspected the document and talked to FRONTLINE regarding the normal disposition of documents within the US military system. When asked about the normal procedures for the handling of files particularly ones regarding actual missions, Charles replied: "It is very unusual (to destroy documents) particularly in a high profile case, even routine documents are supposed to be retained for 2 years." Charles went on to characterize the destruction of the documents as a "Flagrant violation of regulations and says very loudly that someone was very concerned about something that would happen later." It is clear that an order originated somewhere to cause the destruction of the files. By doing so during the course of an official investigation by Congressional committees into the actions taken at Waco, the destruction of these files in all likelihood constitutes obstruction of justice….."

http://fps1999.webjump.com 9/2/99 John Culbertson "…Other information that can be gleaned from this document include the fact that the mission originated in February of 1993, and was carried out by Joint Task Force Six and the 3rd Special Forces Group….. 3rd Special Forces Group is headquartered at Ft. Bragg, North Carolina and like most Special Operations groups the Army has little comment regarding these operational units. Other documents support the involvement of forces from Ft. Bragg in the pre raid planning activities and training. This raises questions as to just what was the involvement of military units in the entire operation from pre-raid planning all the way through the final assault and deadly fire. The destruction of evidence in contravention of established procedures and records is troubling to say the least. The very fact that Special Forces command had a concern as to the disposition of files regarding the operation raises troubling questions regarding the actual involvement of the US Military at Waco. Because the US Military acts only at the request and pleasure of civilian control, questions regarding the entire operation must focus on the Department of Justice, Treasury and with the Administration…."

Houston Chronicle 9/5/99 Jim Henderson "….The big cannons of Congress had their shot at uncovering the truth about Waco and the Branch Davidians, and they misfired. The Justice Department and the Treasury Department had their own crack at the truth and fared no better. Neither did the dozens of lawyers and scores of journalists who chased hundreds of leads and rumors…… What finally cracked the wall was the perseverance of David Hardy, a former Interior Department attorney who set out five years ago to write a book about the "militarization of law enforcement," and Mike McNulty, a down-sized insurance salesman-turned-filmmaker whose first effort, Waco: Rules of Engagement, was nominated for an Academy Award….. Hardy was drawn to Waco because it was an illustration, he says, of the dangers of turning soldiers into cops. McNulty, a Mormon, has said he became interested in the story because of its similarities to the massacre of church members at Haun's Mill in Missouri in 1838….. In a final letter to the Rangers, Hardy wrote, "I may be stating the obvious, but it appears the federal agencies may be setting you up. DPS takes the flak for withholding the records -- they benefit -- but the moment the withholding is challenged, they disavow any responsibility and pin the blame on you. In fact, the Marshal's answer hints that they don't have the foggiest idea what you are talking about." …..By midsummer, the FBI and the ATF were facing the possibility that the evidence, once in the hands of the court, could become public…… "

Sun Herald (Port Charlotte, FL area) 9/2/99 Robert Eckhart "…..A Punta Gorda man is serving on a congressional commission probing ways to make sure that what happened in 1993 in Waco, Texas, never happens again. Robert Sanders, a former assistant director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, said the five-member Commission on the Advancement of Federal Law Enforcement will issue its report sometime this month. Sanders has spent the last year commuting between Washington, D.C., and Charlotte County after being appointed to the commission in 1998 by then-Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich. Sanders, 67, retired from ATF in 1984 and is an attorney who specializes in firearms law. The commission's job, in part, is to investigate the events leading up to the deaths of 80 Branch Davidian cultists in Waco when their compound burned after a six-week standoff with federal lawmen…… The commission also looked into the 1992 killings of the family of religious separatist Randy Weaver, who were shot by U.S. marshals in Ruby Ridge, Idaho. "The origins of the commission began with Waco and Ruby Ridge and other law enforcement catastrophes that were really eroding the public's faith in federal law enforcement," Sanders said. "Those two major events were unprecedented. There will never be, I hope, anything like that in a free society again." …But Sanders said David Koresh, the group's leader, had good rapport with the county sheriff there -- an asset the federal agents could have used. "The sheriff testified that he could have just given him a call, and Koresh would have come down immediately," Sanders said. Instead, Sanders said, ATF officials inexplicably decided to do a military-style invasion of the compound. The result: four ATF agents and 80 cultists were killed. "They knew there were 140 people in there who were totally innocent," Sanders said. "The most logical thing is to take him in a place where there's no danger to others." ….In Ruby Ridge, Sanders said the ATF investigation was tainted with lies and misinformation that led the U.S. marshals to believe Weaver was more dangerous than he really was. "They said he was harboring fugitives, that he was a suspect in bank robberies," Sanders said. "All of it was lies." …..The commission's report will be delivered to Congress, which will consider the policy recommendations. The commission's chairman is William Webster, a former director of the FBI and the CIA…."

9/8/99 Mark England Tommy Witherspoon Cox News Service "…. Plaintiffs in the Branch Davidian lawsuit against the government Wednesday asked for a status conference to find out when they can look at stored evidence and whether the trial date next month is likely to be postponed…..``The government asked to bifurcate the trial, separate it into two parts,'' Caddell said. ``Try only the liability in the first part; damages in the second part, if necessary. The judge never issued a decision on that. We need to know if we go to trial whether we have to present our whole case or just the case on liability.''…..The government filed a motion Tuesday asking Smith to either strike all expert witnesses for the plaintiffs -- claiming they have not been given enough information on the expert witnesses' proposed testimony to even know whether to seek rebuttal witnesses -- or grant a continuance….."

 

Washington Post 9/9/99 David Vise Lorraine Adams "…Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott (R-Miss.) became the highest-ranking official to ask the attorney general to step down, saying her errors in handling the fiery standoff in Waco and other mistakes have left him doubting both her effectiveness and competence….. While other congressional Republicans have called on Reno to resign, Lott's comments raised the political stakes considerably because of his seniority and his direct attack on Reno's fundamental ability to serve. …. Asked yesterday whether he had doubts about who started the fire, Lott said, "Yeah, there's doubts because of the questions that have been raised. . . . How did that happen, who did it, and why were we not given full information or accurate information?" …..Yesterday, senior FBI officials briefed congressional staff members on the Waco siege. They said an explanation regarding why information about the tear gas canisters did not emerge sooner would have to await completion of a thorough inquiry…… For now, Hyde said, "I will withhold advancing this legislation in the hope that Senator Danforth's efforts will not be obstructed by the Justice Department," Hyde said…."

New York Times 9/9/99 David Johnston "…After a hurried seven-day search, Ms. Reno met with Danforth on Wednesday to discuss the scope of his inquiry and was to announce his appointment on Thursday. Earlier on Wednesday, when Danforth was interviewed briefly by Fox News after arriving in Washington, he said the inquiry "would be very daunting." Of his negotiations with the Justice Department, he said, "We've got to tie up some loose ends," but did not discuss any details. ….Danforth, who in his three terms in the Senate established a reputation for rectitude and independence, is said by officials to have sought and received a broad authority to look into any aspect of the final assault on the compound in Waco, Texas on April 19, 1993……Danforth, a former Attorney General of Missouri, also will have full prosecutorial powers to compel testimony, demand documents and convene a Federal grand jury if necessary….. None of the new evidence indicates that Ms. Reno has ever withheld information from Congress or that the F.B.I. intentionally misled anyone, although the bureau has yet to explain how the evidence remained unnoticed in the files of the Hostage Rescue Team, which carried out the assault….. "

9/8/99 Rebecca Carr Jeff Nesmith Cox News Service "…The Texas Rangers, the state's police force, has informed the House Government Reform and Oversight Committee that it will turn over material in response to a subpoena seeking documents, videos and audio tapes. The material is from the Rangers' investigation of the standoff between law enforcement agents and Branch Davidian leader David Koresh and his followers……``We talked to the committee and were told it was a friendly subpoena and to take as long as we needed,'' Cox said. ``Our present plan is to get it to them by Friday.'' He said the committee requested documents and would receive ``a report, as I understand it, a summary of the investigation and maybe some support matter,'' but no physical evidence…..Rep. Bob Barr, R-Ga., a member of Burton's committee, said congressional hearings are inevitable. ``If Congress fails to hold hearings, we will assure the rest of the executive branch we are not serious about reasserting the oversight powers that have been so flagrantly ignored by Justice and the rest of the Administration for the past six years,'' Barr said…."

ABC News.com 9/8/99 Barbara Starr "…. Did the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms try to lure the military into getting involved with Waco? Clearly some in the military think so. While Pentagon officials prepare to be grilled by Congress this month on Army involvement in the deadly siege, two articles in military journals suggest a long-running sense of unease within some military quarters about the operation. In the articles, one published in 1997 and the second earlier this year, two officers allege that the ATF misled the military in early 1993 about activities in the Branch Davidian compound to get the military to play a role in the operation. Both officers suggest the ATF tried to encourage the military to skirt the Posse Comitatus Act of 1878, which prohibits the military from playing a role in civilian law enforcement. They allege the agency tried to exploit an exception in the act: a provision for military training and support for counter-drug missions in the United States……But the Army came dangerously close to illegal involvement, Lujan contends. He says the ATF failed to make an acceptable case for military support from JTF-6 because it cited alleged drug activity from 1987 to justify action in 1993. "The six-year lapse in these events clearly attenuates the underlying rationale for illegal drug activity, the BATF request nevertheless boldly asserted the needed nexus," he wrote. " ... This could easily have been the single most debilitating event to occur within the Army since the tragedy at My Lai." Lujan's assessment is underscored in the March/April 1999 issue of Military Review. In that article, Col. Sean Byrne, who has worked in special operations for many years, also says that "the drug connection BATF used to justify its request for military support was not valid." He claims that "military lawyers literally saved the day when they conducted a further legal review that resulted in the request not being acted on. Had they not questioned what appeared to be a routine request, JTF-6 most certainly would have been involved in a clear Posse Comitatus violation and been accessories in a tragedy that ended in the deaths of 76 civilians." …."

ABC News.com 9/8/99 Barbara Starr "…. Similar concerns about military involvement in the raid were raised by two senior special operations Army officers shortly the end of the siege. On April 14, 1993, then- Brig. Gen. Peter Schoomaker and then-Col. William Boykin were called to the Justice Department to meet with Attorney General Janet Reno. Both men had previously commanded Army special forces and were highly experienced in counter-terrorism and hostage rescue operations. Reno wanted their assessment on the FBI proposal to end the siege. Schoomaker had toured the site by helicopter the day before. While they offered some technical advice on the effects of using tear gas, Schoomaker has told ABCNEWS he declined to formally review the plan because it was not a military operation. …."

http://www.newsmax.com/showinsidecover.shtml?a=1999/9/8/114242 9/8/99 "….Judicial Watch, the Washington-based public interest law firm, isn't particularly thrilled with reports that Attorney General Janet Reno will tap former Missouri Sen. John Danforth to lead a new probe into the 1993 Waco massacre. In a press release issued on Wednesday, Judicial Watch chairman Larry Klayman called Danforth "just another 'Washington club' politican who will likely compromise justice." "It's time for the American people to get real," Klayman advised. "Over the last six and one half years, we have seen what is effectively a giant cover-up of 'bi-partisan scandals' by the Washington establishment." …..Or is it because, in one investigation after another, the Clinton White House adopts its patented rope-a-dope strategy? Bogus privileges are invoked as witnesses scurry off to faraway lands or simply stonewall probers, despite even jail sentences for contempt. As the process drags on forever, investigators, the media and the American public are simply worn out……And when, as in Monicagate, a smoking gun case of presidential obstruction of justice and perjuy does result in articles of impeachment, so-called congressional wise men like Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV) admit on national TV that Bill Clinton is indeed guilty of crimes warranting removal from office but cast their votes for acquittal. Will Congress behave any differently if Sen. Danforth finds he can't limit responsibility for Waco wrongdoing to FBI officials on the scene? ….And will the Waco information spigot suddenly dry up as the Justice Department takes steps to ensure that Danforth has exclusive jurisdiction over the treasure trove of evidence now in the hands of the Texas Rangers? …."

http://www.cato.org/dailys/09-08-99.html 9/8/99 David Kopel Paul Blackman "…If, as President Clinton and Attorney General Janet Reno claim, the federal government bears no responsibility for the deaths of the children at Waco, why has the federal government worked so hard, and with so much success until recently, to falsify the facts about what happened there? The lies about how the fire started commenced while the building was still in flames. A Justice Department spokesman in Washington claimed that an FBI sniper using a rifle scope had seen a male Branch Davidian, wearing black Ninja-style clothes and a black hood, pour liquid on the floor behind a piano and then ignite it. The day after the fire, Jeffrey Jamar, the FBI's special agent in charge at Waco, asserted that the agent saw a person "get down with cupped hands and then there was a flash of fire." At the criminal trial of the Branch Davidians in 1994, that story fell apart. FBI Special Agent Jack Morrison said that he could see, through a hole created by a tank, somebody bent or kneeling by an overturned piano. The man appeared to be washing his hands, although the sniper admitted on cross-examination that he could not see the man's hands. The fire did not erupt while the man was in the sniper's sight, though the sniper did see a fire shortly thereafter. However, pictures of the progress of the fire show that the area near the overturned piano (the front door) was not a starting point for any fire. No fire appears there until several minutes after the sniper's observation. Photographs show no fire in that area while much of the rest of the building was in flames……"

http://www.cato.org/dailys/09-08-99.html 9/8/99 David Kopel Paul Blackman "…Attorney General Reno earned a congratulatory phone call from President Clinton the day after the fire because of her highly publicized acceptance of responsibility. She put the FBI in charge of investigating its own conduct at Waco. The resulting report was a sham and a cover-up. Although seven independent reviewers were appointed to examine the FBI report, the FBI withheld evidence from them, such as Branch Davidian leader David Koresh's April 14 offer to surrender as soon as he completed his written interpretation of the Seven Seals from the Book of Revelation. ……The FBI lied to Janet Reno right from the start: they told her that CS chemical warfare agent is a "mild" irritant, even though much smaller doses than were used at Waco have killed children. On the day of the assault, the FBI flagrantly ignored her prior order to back off if there was any danger to the children. When she had initially rejected the FBI's plan for a tank and chemical warfare assault on the Branch Davidians, the FBI told her that "Koresh was beating the babies." In fact, FBI listening devices revealed no such thing….."

http://www.cato.org/dailys/09-08-99.html 9/8/99 David Kopel Paul Blackman "…It is undisputed that while the FBI tanks were conducting the chemical warfare assault, the Branch Davidians spread kerosene in the building, intending to light it if the tanks entered the building. Starting a massive conflagration would have been consistent with Koresh's apocalyptic interpretation of the Bible. However, if federal agents bear no responsibility for the start of the fire and for the deaths of 76 people, why has the FBI covered up so much evidence for so long? …..Even if one takes the current FBI explanation at face value, it shows the federal government's horrible disregard for the children. Although CS chemical warfare agent is banned from international warfare by a treaty that the United States has signed, the FBI used it against children and babies, knowing that those innocents would be unprotected by gas masks, since their faces were too small to fit them. After the fire, the FBI bemoaned the failure of the Branch Davidians to take refuge in the underground tornado shelter, where the air remained cool and fresh. Yet the FBI now admits that the pyrotechnic grenades were launched at the very beginning of the assault as part of a systematic plan to keep anyone from fleeing to the shelter….."

http://www.cato.org/dailys/09-08-99.html 9/8/99 David Kopel Paul Blackman "…The federal Posse Comitatus Act forbids the use of the military for civilian law enforcement. Yet the Dallas Morning News reports that the U.S. Army's Delta Force was "present, up front and close" on April 19, 1993. That revelation undermines earlier claims that only three Delta Force soldiers were at Waco in an "advisory" capacity. The government claims that the FBI never fired a single shot at Waco, yet an FBI aerial film appears to show the distinctive pattern of machine gun fire coming from government posts at the rear of the Branch Davidian compound -- on the one side of the building that television cameras could not see. Could it be that Delta Force, and not the FBI, was doing the shooting -- making claims that the FBI did not fire a single shot literally true? …."

http://www.cato.org/dailys/09-08-99.html 9/8/99 David Kopel Paul Blackman "…Although the president shed crocodile tears over the 12 children at Columbine High School and now seeks partisan advantage by pushing for federal laws that could not possibly have prevented Columbine, he and his administration remain coldly indifferent to the 26 children at Waco. The day after the Waco fire, Clinton said, "I do not think the United States government is responsible for the fact that a bunch of religious fanatics decided to kill themselves." But the children didn't kill themselves…."

Associated Press 9/8/99 "….Several spent illumination flares were found in the tons of evidence recovered from the charred rubble of the Branch Davidian compound near Waco, The Dallas Morning News reported today. The newspaper said Texas Rangers discovered a star parachute flare while sifting through a storage facility Friday for missing pyrotechnic tear gas grenades. Evidence logs showed more such incendiary flares were recovered in the weeks following the FBI siege and assault on April 19, 1993, said James B. Francis Jr., head of the Texas Department of Public Safety. ``These flares are potentially a very important issue, inasmuch as the government had enormous spotlights trained on the compound throughout the standoff.'' ``They didn't need these flares to light the compound. One or more was fired,'' Francis told the newspaper. ``For what purpose or reason would these rounds be used?'' ….. "

The Dallas Morning News 9/8/99 Lee Hancock "…Expended U.S. military illumination flares fired by U.S. government personnel have been discovered in the tons of evidence recovered from the Branch Davidian compound, the head of the Texas Department of Public Safety said Tuesday night. Texas Rangers searching a Waco storage facility for missing pyrotechnic tear-gas grenades discovered one of the military devices, a star parachute flare…."I can't tell you whether they were [shot by] the military or FBI, but certainly, they were fired by government officials," Mr. Francis said. …. Texas law enforcement officials said the discovery of the spent flare raises troubling new questions about what else may be unknown in the tons of evidence recovered after the compound burned. The Rangers, who were brought in to investigate after the siege began, were asked by the U.S. Justice Department to keep the trove of evidence involved in the criminal prosecutions that followed the siege. But tons of other debris, including more than 300,000 rounds of ammunition and other ordinance stockpiled by the sect, has been kept for years in large storage boxes in Waco. "There is a big semi-warehouse of spent munitions that has not been investigated yet," one Texas officials said. "Nobody knew what they were looking for before now. Nobody was hunting for incendiary devices. There are 55-gallon drums - barrel after barrel - of munitions that haven't been looked at."

The Dallas Morning News 9/8/99 Lee Hancock "…A government investigator said Tuesday that a General Accounting Office investigation on military involvement during the siege was unable to resolve questions about the FBI's acquisition of high-explosive 40 mm military rounds during the standoff or the number of U.S. Army Special Forces personnel sent to Waco. ….. Defense department records indicate that the illlumination rounds were obtained from nearby Fort Hood during the second week of the 1993 standoff. …. Federal officials have said that the pyrotechnic tear gas rounds were fired in an underground bunker away from the compound, and were used more than three hours before the compound erupted in flames. But where those devices, known as M-651 CS rounds, were acquired by the bureau is unclear. …"

The Dallas Morning News 9/8/99 Lee Hancock "…Mr. Francis said Texas Rangers on Tuesday obtained two unfired M651s from the exact batch used at Waco from the U.S. Army's Redstone Arsenal in Alabama and Pine Bluff Arsenal in Arkansas. Mr. Francis said Rangers have traced one of the shell casings in their evidence locker to a batch of the devices made for the U.S. military in the late 1960s. Some recent news reports have included denials from defense department officials that any of the pyrotechnic gas rounds used at Waco came from U.S. military stores. "Contrary to defense department statements, the evidence we have indicates that the CS cannisters used by the FBI were military," Mr. Francis said. …."

The Dallas Morning News 9/8/99 Lee Hancock "…Mr. Francis said Texas Rangers found a spent U.S. military "parachute flare" when they were searching in a Waco storage facilty on Friday for pyrotechnic tear gas rounds missing from the Rangers' Austin evidence lockers. Mr. Francis said at least one other parachute flare was listed on the evidence logs of items recovered from around the compound after the fire. "They have no military value other than to be an incendiary flare," he said. "The question this raises is how many are still to be discovered in the evidence. But we know they do exist in the evidence." The use of illumination rounds by the FBI has been controversial in past high-profile cases. Illumination rounds were used by FBI teams to burn down the cabin hideout of white supremacist Robert Mathews after he shot and wounded one FBI agent and engaged in a gunbattle with others in 1984….."

The Dallas Morning News 9/8/99 Lee Hancock "…Records provided by a Pentagon official to GAO for its report, commissioned by Congress to examine military assistance provided to civilian law enforcement during the 1993 siege, indicated that five special forces soldiers were sent to Waco to provide and maintain specialized technical equipment and observe government actions. ….. But other travel records discovered in the files of the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms indicated that eight people from special forces were present at various points during the 51-day siege, said Melissa McDowell, one of the principal investigators. …..Defense Department officials have insisted that no military personnel were involved in the FBI's final teargas assault. But the chairman of the Texas Department of Public Safety Commission, James B. Francis of Dallas, told The News late last month that Texas law enforcement authorities have evidence that may corroborate reports of active Delta Force involvement in the April 19 debacle….."

The Dallas Morning News 9/8/99 Lee Hancock "… She [GAO McDowell] said military documents indicated classified technical equipment provided to the FBI in Waco included highly specialized robot-driven video equipment as well as electronic jamming equipment. Miliary records indicated some of the classified equipment was on the ground and in use in the siege on March 2, three days after the standoff began….."

The Dallas Morning News 9/8/99 Lee Hancock "… The other question left unresolved was the supply of 250 40-mm high explosive rounds to the FBI's hostage rescue team. Records from Fort Hood's III Corps indicated that the Army supplied those rounds along with 50 illumination rounds and 200 practice rounds to the hostage rescue team, along with a refresher training session in mid-March 1993 at a Fort Hood firing range. FBI agents were armed with shoulder-fired grenade launchers, and they used those to fire both nonflammable tear gas and pyrotechnic tear-gas rounds during their final assault. While military records tracked a specific FBI agent requesting and receiving the illumination and practice rounds, however, there were no records to explain who asked for the high-explosive shells and why they were needed in Waco. "We questioned it and we weren't able to get any more information," she said….."

The Dallas Morning News 9/8/99 Lee Hancock "…Ms. McDowell, the GAO investigator, said she recently went back to her records from the inquiry after news reports indicated that other military rounds, M-651 pyrotechnic CS tear gas canisters, had been fired by FBI agents in Waco. She said her records indicated those rounds were not provided to the FBI any U.S. military sources during the course of the standoff, suggesting that they had been brought to Waco by the law enforcement agency….."

NewsMax.com 9/8/99 Carl Limbacher "…A California newspaper editor who doubles as his town's vice mayor claims that three Texas hospitals were warned to set aside burn beds at least a day before the government's April 19, 1993 assault on the Branch Davidian compound at Waco…… Napa Sentinel editor Harry Martin told Inside Cover on Tuesday that he covered the tip about the burn beds in several radio interviews prior to noon the next day, when the first flames appeared in the windows of the Davidian compound. "On the eve of Waco we got a call in which we were told that they had reserved burn beds in three hospitals including Parkland in Dallas," said Martin. "I mentioned it on various radio shows that night, so it was logged into history."…… Martin is a journalist of some 33 years standing, who says that in addition to the Sentinel he's run a number of military intelligence publications over the years. The titles are impressive: "Defense Systems Review", "The Military Communications Handbook", "Microwave Systems News", "Military Science and Technology" and others……. Martin says that he never actually printed a story on Waco. "I just passed information on to people." One piece of information was a computer disk Martin says came from Koresh himself. "I don't know what was on it. We started to read it and then realized that we better turn it over to the FBI."…."

World News Daily 9/8/99 Jon Dougherty "…As a naval reserve corpsman, when I was still assigned to the Marine Corps for combat training, we performed many "assault" drills designed to hone our attack skills. We didn't get into the urban assault drills much because at the time the military's emphasis was on conventional ground warfare, not urban "peacekeeping" or "humanitarian" missions, which bothers me. Soldiers are not cops and vice versa. Or are they? There is an "urban assault" mentality manifesting itself in local police departments more and more often these days, and that just plain isn't good for the cause of freedom. After looking at this issue from all sides, there doesn't seem to be much difference to me between a small unit Marine urban assault team and, say, the "special tactics" teams formed by numerous police departments over the past decade. The problem, though, is that there is a difference. Or at least there is supposed to be. One is supposed to perform a military mission while the other is supposed to be operating in a law enforcement capacity. Increasingly local police departments use helicopters -- often obtained as military surplus -- weapons, gear and tactics better suited for a combat zone rather than a suburban neighborhood…… But considering the FBI's handling of Waco, I don't have much faith in them, either. In fact, the FBI's "Hostage Rescue Team" is an oxymoron and is larger and more militaristic than similar squads in many other law enforcement agencies. No, this is something Congress and the president of the United States need to handle. The right of Americans to be "secure in their persons, papers and effects, " even on presentation of a valid search warrant, is the government's responsibility to protect. Instead, Congress has given local police departments the authority -- mostly through federal anti-drug legislation -- to conduct these kinds of military "raids" with no oversight. ….For those times when it may be necessary to "raid" a house using SWAT tactics, police officers and their leaders owe us the right to be "presumed innocent until proven guilty." They owe us the right to make sure they've got their facts straight before they go busting into our homes and kill us in the middle of the night. Finding out afterwards that we've done nothing wrong won't bring us -- or our loved ones -- back from the dead. Such tactics teach our kids to fear -- not respect -- the police. And God help us if we "dare" to try to defend ourselves from such a felonious assault. …."

The Daily Republican 9/8/99 Howard Hobbs "…Federal records now have established that a U.S. Army military unit known by its cover name as Joint Task Force 6 was under the operational control of US Army Forces Command (FORSCOM) and the United States Atlantic Command (USACOM). ….According to reliable sources in the Pentagon, requests for military support of law enforcement agencies would flow into JTF 6, be vetted by its staff as having the appropriate drug nexus, and be approved with deployment orders transmitted by the Joint Chief of Staff. Secretary of Defense delegated authority through CINC-USACOM and USAFORSCOM to approve missions within these parameters. Major projects included surveillance and reporting, and the use of aviation assets to ferry law enforcement officers. Soldiers detailed to JTF 6 were attached to that organization from their parent unit for specified periods of time; thus a Special Forces Operational Detachment with supporting aviation was part of a Rapid Reaction Support Unit assigned to JTF 6 in early 1993 for a six month period. During this same period a request came into Operation Alliance for military assets to support a BATF operation against what was being designated then as "a methamphetamine laboratory located on the outskirts of Waco."…"

The Daily Republican 9/8/99 Howard Hobbs "…The request detailed the needs of the BATF: military training in the specific areas of medical treatment, communications procedures, operational plan development, review, and approval, and "room clearing discriminate fire operations," termed "close-quarter combat" by the military. More important, the BATF requested that Army medics and communicators actually accompany them to the forward staging base if not on the actual mission. Clearly, the request was more expansive than those normally received. The original request was initially approved by the JTF 6 staff. However, questions by the Commander of the Special Forces detachment relayed to his home unit legal advisor resulted in a review of the extent of Army involvement in what appeared to be a civilian matter. Consequently, in the actual operation the Army was only to provide a training site at Fort Hood, safety inspection of the training lanes set up by the BATF, and medical and communications training and equipment. According to Defense Department sources, all members of the Special Forces detachment were, however, under orders to depart from the Fort Hood site before the operation at the Branch Davidian compound took place….. "
The Daily Republican 9/8/99 Howard Hobbs "… The BATF knew of the requirement to establish a drug nexus in order to obtain needed military support from JTF 6. Authoritative evidence conclusively demonstrates that any precursor chemical or methamphetamine connection at the Waco compound had occurred in 1987, fully six years before the raid. It is probable that David Koresh was in fact responsible for expelling the member involved in the fledgling illegal drug activity, going so far as to report the offender to police. The six year lapse in these events clearly undermines a the Clinton White House rationale for attacking the Branch Davidian people, yet the BATF request for authority to launch the attack nevertheless boldly asserted the "drug nexus." ….."


The Daily Republican 9/8/99 Howard Hobbs "…However, it was eventually to became clear from reports and investigations following the disasterous raid on the civilians at the Davidian compound that BATF's primary interest in this case stemmed from their conclusion that the Branch Davidians were "stockpiling automatic weapons" in their compound. That conclusion perhaps could have been foreshadowed by a series of odd events related to the BATF request for U.S. Army Special Forces support. They were the peripheral nature of BATF in drug operations, the lack of involvement of the specialized drug laboratory reaction force, and the extensive nature of military support requested. All provided strong indications that further investigation should have been carried out before taking any action whateever to force an entry into the private property of the Davidians. And although the commanding general of the JTF testified before Congress that he saw no reason to check out the BATF request…."


The Daily Republican 9/8/99 Howard Hobbs "… This event is easily the single most debilitating event to occur within the Army since the tragedy at My Lai. Making matters worse, it is even more destructive because it took place on American soil, abd is a clear violation of the Posse Comitatus Act and raises the issue of military involvement in a case of First Amendement religious freedoms….. In testimony before Congress, an officer who questioned the legality of the proposed mission at Waco related that his JTF 6 counterpart, a higher-ranking officer, had indicated that the calls for close examination of command authority to attack civilians was "unwarranted and an obstacle to mission success." ….."
The Daily Republican 9/8/99 Howard Hobbs "…The Clinton White House relies on the constitutional and statutory authority of the President of the United States to maintain public order and domestic tranquillity. Those who consider the Posse Comitatus Act a giant bulwark preventing the Army from enforcing the law may be shocked to learn that the relevant enabling mechanism is fairly straightforward. The language of the act itself specifies that activities expressly authorized by the Constitution or by statute are exempt from the act's restrictions. One such exception is the statutory authority of the President to use federal troops to quell domestic violence. [10 US Code Sections 331 through 334.] Upon receipt of a proper request for assistance from a state governor, the President issues a proclamation identifying that a breakdown in public order has occurred, and orders the intransigent individuals to disperse. Once it is clear that the order to disperse is not being followed, the President then orders the Secretary of Defense, in consultation with the Attorney General, to quell the insurrection and restore public order. This presidential authority to use federal troops is not subject to judicial review…."


Judicial Watch 9/8/99 Joe Giganti "…Here we go again. Another politician and Washington Establishment figure is appointed to lead of probe of corruption in the nation's capital. The fact that Janet Reno wants John Danforth to lead the proposed Waco probe tells us something in and of itself. Reno's and Louis Freeh's latest cover-up of the Waco scandal is just one part of a vast pattern of deceit by the Justice Department during the Clinton-Gore-Gingrich years, where both major political parties used scandal to score political points, not to seek justice. Indeed, just today we learn that another burgeoning scandal -- money laundering of U.S. assets by Boris Yelstin, his family and the Russian mob -- was made known to the Justice Department as early as last March. One must also assume it was made known to Congress in and around the same period. Certainly, the European press has been reporting on it for years…..In this context of mutual political cover-up, the choice of ex-Senator Danforth, along with a yet to be chosen Democrat, to lead the Waco probe, is like having the fox investigate his own henhouse massacre. Danforth is pure Washington Establishment, and a politician first and foremost. Choosing him to conduct an investigation of Waco is a comfort to the other politicians in Washington who not only want only to score political points for the upcoming elections, but also avoid doing anything too harsh that might rock the boat. To really seek justice and appropriate penalties could set off a chain reaction in the justice system, where politicians of all stripes might, for once, be held accountable by the powers that be. This, after all, is too much for the Washington fat cats to bear…."

San Diego Union-Tribune 9/8/99 The Chicago Sun Times Robert Novak "…It testifies to the Clinton administration's political dexterity that the fiasco of Justice Department handling of the Waco disaster is being laid at the door of the federal official whom President Clinton thoroughly detests: FBI Director Louis Freeh. ….It is difficult to minimize the outrage by congressional Republicans that Reno is now depicted as the victim of Waco and Freeh the malefactor. For the nearly five years that the GOP has controlled Congress, Reno and her Justice Department handlers have stonewalled legitimate requests from the legislative branch -- in sharp comparison to Freeh's cooperation. That is precisely what has made Reno invaluable to the president, and Freeh so menacing. To blame Freeh instead of Reno for the apparent cover-up is the famous White House spin cycle at its most audacious. He was not yet in office at the time of the tragedy. Reno, not Freeh, was in charge of two outside investigations of Waco. In response to my telephone call to the FBI director, he declined to discuss the details. But when I asked if he had known about the withheld information, he quickly replied: "Absolutely not. I did not know." While Reno herself was typically bland and uncommunicative in her press conference last Friday, the administration's political operatives have been poisoning FBI waters. That deflected attention from what the Justice Department did.

San Diego Union-Tribune 9/8/99 The Chicago Sun Times Robert Novak "…Lee Hancock, whose stellar reporting for The Dallas Morning News broke this story, has described a classic flimflam. The Justice Department asked the Texas Rangers to keep Waco evidence locked up, and instructed them to refer requests for such evidence back up to Washington. Justice, in turn, would say that it did not have control of material that was in the hands of the Texas authorities. That kept everything locked up until two weeks ago. Assistant U.S. Attorney Bill Johnson of Waco, who has become something of a whistle-blower, issued a warning to Reno last Monday. He had been given a 1994 document containing notations by Justice Department officials, suggesting that interviews with members of the FBI's hostage rescue team not be given to anybody outside Justice's legal staff. On Tuesday, the attorney general asked federal court in Waco to block the release of documents. Such bottling up of evidence has been characteristic of the Reno Justice Department.

San Diego Union-Tribune 9/8/99 The Chicago Sun Times Robert Novak "…Freeh's cooperation has made him a pariah at the White House, as Bob Woodward's latest book "Shadow" makes clear. On Aug. 21, 1998, four days after delivering his first "contrition" speech to the nation, Clinton, in a private telephone conversation with former aide and ardent supporter Lanny Davis, "let loose about the ignominies he was suffering." The president described Freeh in three unspeakably vulgar words for his recommendation (rejected by Reno) of an independent counsel on 1996 campaign finance abuses…."

World Net Daily 9/7/99 Linda Bowles "....We are being set up to believe that if the FBI did not start the fire, the demonized David Koresh did, so everything that happened was his fault. This is more than a wrong assumption. This is a lie posturing as an assumption. The truth is that the safety of the children should have been the top priority guiding the hands of the U.S. government and its agents. It was not, and that is the everlasting shame of Waco. Of all the events of the past decade that led to cynicism of the government and alienation from it, none had the impact of the Waco tragedy. Nearly 80 American citizens died horrible deaths, including two pregnant women and 25 children, 17 of whom were under 10 years of age. They burned to death in a lantern-lit, wooden structure that had been violently rammed by armored tanks and assaulted by chemical weapons. The attack was authorized by President Clinton and ordered by Attorney General Reno...."

World Net Daily 9/7/99 Linda Bowles "....It was a tragedy that would have toppled most civilized governments, or at least resulted in the resignation of a few top-level scapegoats -- but not in an America where justice is routinely mangled, the Constitution is ignored, and corruption thrives in high places. The behavior of the mainstream media was revealing. In every other instance, if 25 children died horrible and arguably unnecessary deaths, the reporters and cameras would have been all over the story. News editors, particularly TV news editors, would had sent teams of ace reporters and cameramen down to the scene, with the usual instruction not to come back until they had captured on film the faces, words and tears of bereaved family members. Every lurid detail and aspect of the carnage would have been tediously exploited. But that didn't happen. We didn't view the funerals, hear the gospel music or listen to the praise heaped on the dead by those who knew and loved them. There was no national mourning. President Clinton did not show up to deliver the eulogy. He didn't plant a dogwood tree on the White House grounds in memory of them as he did for the precious children who died in the Oklahoma City bombing. This time, honoring the victims served no political agenda....."

World Net Daily 9/7/99 Linda Bowles "....Before the fire, huge tanks had rumbled up and rammed gaping holes in the walls of the buildings. Heavy volumes of gas were pumped into the structures, saturating the air, burning the skin, blinding the eyes. The plaintive wails of frightened, coughing children filled the air. They were held close, and told to be brave. Outside, loudspeakers blared, "This is not an assault! This is not an assault!" -- a message so ludicrous that those inside must have doubted their own senses.....There were, no doubt, screams of fear and pain from the children and babies, cries of horror, shouted prayers and supplications ... thick black smoke ... the rising heat of fierce, wind-driven flames ... panic ... confusion ... child-calls for "mama!" ... chaos ... the end of the world....."

World Net Daily 9/7/99 Linda Bowles "....Perhaps it is possible to ask a question about Waco without being labeled a dangerous, anti-government crazy. Officers Stacey Koon and Laurence Powell were sent to prison for violating the civil rights of ex-felon Rodney King by using excessive force while arresting him. Was not the whole Waco operation, including the gassing of infants and children, an excessive use of force in making an arrest? Who protects the civil rights of the innocent when it is the government itself who violates them? Why isn't Janet Reno in jail? ..."

 

Wall St. Journal 9/7/99 "....This being the age of Clinton, Louis Freeh is being set up as the fall guy for a cover-up of the disastrous Waco assault. Never mind that he didn't take over the FBI until nearly four months after the assault and crucial decisions on how to investigate it. What matters is that he's been a politically independent thorn in the side of Mr. Clinton and Attorney General Janet Reno......We've seen this kind of treatment before in Bill Clinton's Washington. Billy Dale got himself fired when Friends of Bill wanted to take over the White House Travel Office, and was even indicted by Ms. Reno's justice hounds, though a jury quickly acquitted him. Linda Tripp found her personnel records leaked from the Pentagon. And Jean Lewis, who recommended action in Whitewater, had her deleted personal computer files unerased and broadcast in Congress. Mr. Freeh has now joined the target list because he's been a rare dissenter from the Reno pattern of politicized Justice. Along with Justice investigator Charles LaBella, he broke with Ms. Reno to urge an independent counsel in the campaign-finance scandal. Congress recently discovered that Justice politicos had refused a FBI request to wiretap suspected Los Alamos spy Wen Ho Lee. And we know the FBI opposed Mr. Clinton's outrageous recent grant of clemency to 16 Puerto Rican nationalists linked to a terrorist group. (Forced to back down in this sop to New York's Puerto Rican militants, the Clintons are now spinning the incident as a healthy marital disagreement. Hilarious.) This isn't to say Mr. Freeh has been entirely successful in rooting out the FBI's self-protective culture. The agency's lack of candor regarding its role at Ruby Ridge, Idaho, was a serious black mark. It is entirely possible that agents also sought to cover up the truth about Waco. But anyone actually concerned about the merits of the matter should consult two articles we published last week by officially designated outside investigators....."

World Net Daily 9/7/99 Linda Bowles "....It was Ms. Reno--actually, we are entitled to presume, Mr. Hubbell--who decided on an internal investigation of the role of Justice and the FBI. By contrast Treasury Secretary Lloyd Bentsen chartered an independent investigation of the role played by his department through the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. See the August 30 article by sometime special prosecutor Henry Ruth, who served on the ATF team. When Mr. Freeh arrived on the scene, was he supposed to overturn the Reno/Hubbell decision?....At the first meeting of a panel of 10 experts appointed to make recommendations about future Wacos, Harvard Psychiatrist Alan A. Stone wrote on August 31, "we discovered that Justice had no intention of telling us what actually happened during the first raid." Mr. Stone adds, "Because the Justice Department's published investigation was so inadequate, I sent a copy of my preliminary memorandum to the newly appointed director of the FBI, Louis B. Freeh, hoping to break through the stonewall. Soon the crucial FBI actors were phoning me with some of the candid answers . . ."

World Net Daily 9/7/99 Linda Bowles "....A House committee also sought to investigate, but Democrats led by now-Senator Chuck Schumer practiced up for impeachment hearings by turning the procedure into a circus. As the hearings wound up, Rep. John Conyers said Republicans tried to implicate everyone "but the butler." Mr. Schumer complained of "Monday-morning quarterbacking," and intoned, "If we did hearings on D-Day, we'd end up court-martialing General Eisenhower."

World Net Daily 9/7/99 Linda Bowles ".... She has named special counsels for trivial cases against Cabinet members, but refused them on serious charges against the president and vice president despite the LaBella and Freeh recommendations. Indeed, she humiliated Mr. LaBella, sending her department a potent message about dissent from the Clinton political line. Now she is trying to do the same with Mr. Freeh. Meanwhile, she has flagrantly violated the Vacancy Act by leaving important positions filled with "acting" heads. The result is a demoralized Justice Department that cannot be trusted to enforce the rule of law...."

 

Washington Times 9/7/99 Greg Pierce "...Mr. Johnston, who prosecuted survivors of the Branch Davidian disaster, finally let filmmaker Michael McNulty ("Waco: The Rules of the Game") into the evidence room, where Mr. McNulty "discovered the existence of the pyrotechnic rounds that have caused all the fuss," Mr. Boyer said. "After McNulty's last visit, Johnston says, he received a telephone call from Marie Hagen, a trial lawyer in the department's torts branch in Washington, which is defending the government against the Davidians' wrongful-death suit. Hagen was angry and, Johnston says, 'growled' at him on the phone, asking, 'Did you let McNulty see the evidence?' When he told her that he had, 'she was very disturbed.' "Then, last week, Johnston received a communication from his superior, Bill Blagg, the U.S. attorney in San Antonio, that he viewed as a thinly veiled threat. He was sent a three-page facsimile of 1993 documents indicating that he might have been present at an interview in which an FBI agent said that 'military gas rounds' were used at Waco. Johnston was surprised that the memo was being circulated by the department, and to him the implication was clear: he was being auditioned for the role of scapegoat." ..."

 

NEWSMAX 9/7/99 "...Why did the BATF launch its bloody Feb. 28, 1993 assault on the Branch Davidian compound-- when, just nine days before, Koresh had openly welcomed two BATF agents onto his property and actually practiced target shooting with them? That's the question posed by a document unearthed by Waco expert David Hardy, which reports the incident as part of the BATF's surveillance of Koresh and his followers. On Hardy's web site, Attorney General Janet Reno, Congressional investigators, the White House and even the mainstream press can read the Treasury Department's own report about Koresh's incredible meeting with two BATF agents: "Synopsis of Surveillance -- Feb. 19, 1993; FRIDAY "On Feb. 19, 1993, Special Agents Robert Rodriguez and Jeffrey Brzozowski; in an undercover capacity, went to the Davidian Compound and met with Leader David Koresh and two other male members for the purpose of shooting the AR-15 rifles. ....Special Agents Rodriguez and Brzozowski, along with David Koresh shot the AR-15 rifles. David Koresh displayed an ability to shoot the rifles very well. After shooting the rifles, Special Agent Rodriguez allowed David Koresh and two males to shoot Rodriguez's .38 super pistol. During this time, David Koresh returned to the compound and returned (with) two Sig-Sauer pistols. He returned with a model 226 and 220. David Koresh provided the 9mm and .45 caliber ammunition. David Koresh also stated that he owned a Ruger, 10-22 caliber rifle and other weapons. Mr. Koresh stated that he believed that every person had the right to own firearms and protect their homes....." http://www.indirect.com/www/dhardy/DK_Shooting.html

Los Angeles Times 9/6/99 Robert Scheer ".... In the immediate aftermath of Waco, Reno had said "the buck stops here," and in July 1995, I ended a column stating, "The president must now hold her to her word. If she cannot find the fortitude to protect the citizenry from the secret police agencies under her jurisdiction, then she must be fired." That was more than four years ago, and she never lifted a finger to right this egregious wrong until the most recent revelation from outside sources that the FBI concealed tapes proving its agents had used incendiary devices. No such proof was required for Reno to have acted earlier. FBI culpability in the Waco massacre was obvious from Day One. There was never a compelling reason for the FBI to launch its murderous assault on the compound. The people inside didn't represent a threat to anyone but themselves, and flattening the walls of their home with tanks was hardly an act of mercy. The adults in that compound were there as a matter of free choice and should have been left alone. As for releasing the children, negotiations, however lengthy, were obviously the humane alternative. Instead, the FBI fired between 300 and 450 projectiles of a "super" tear gas, creating confusion and hysteria inside. Now the FBI admits to firing at least a few pyrotechnic devices that could have set flammable material inside the compound on fire. Even more damning is that the FBI refused to allow fire equipment to be present when it created what it must have known would be a fiery hell.....Most of this information was widely reported four years ago, and congressional hearings that followed revealed more incriminating evidence that the FBI was out of control. Yet Reno failed totally to respond to that flood of information by reining in an agency directly under her bureaucratic control. She just wanted the memory of Waco to fade away...... Reno is a cop gone wrong. She didn't commit the crime, but she covered for those who did, maintaining that eerie blue wall of silence. As the nation's chief law enforcement officer, she had an overarching obligation to investigate wrongdoing at the center of power before she presumed to go policing the rest of us. She didn't. As secretary of the Justice Department, she sabotaged justice. She should now be fired by President Clinton. That's where the buck stops...."

Drudge Report 9/6/99 "...*World Exclusive** **Must Credit DRUDGE REPORT** ...A former government officer has told investigators that members of the secret Army unit Delta Force said they participated in a shoot-out during the final assault on the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned. The witness, according to congressional sources, has already named names -- and will soon offer his account under oath! The development caused panic and confusion at the top levels of the Justice Department and the FBI over the holiday weekend, leaving one top official scrambling for details. FBI Director Freeh has demanded a full briefing, one agency source divulged late Monday...... Meanwhile, congressional investigators are growing convinced that infrared film taken by an FBI surveillance aircraft at 9,000 feet on the final day of the Waco standoff does appear to show U.S. armed forces firing into the church compound...... One witness has told congressional investigators that in April of 1993, in response to a press inquiry, a White House spokesman stated privately that a "wavier is on the president's desk" that would have authorized military intervention...."

 

 

AP 9/6/99 Jim Abrams "...Schumer, on ABC's ``This Week,'' said hearings would probably descend into partisan squabbling. ``My worry is that congressional investigations would bring up a lot of heat and not very much light.'' But Sen. Phil Gramm, R-Texas, said Congress must be involved. ``You can't have the country misled for six years by the Justice Department and the FBI and not have Congress do something about it,'' he said on ABC. .....Any GOP-led investigation would be sure to touch on the competence of Reno, who has constantly clashed with Republicans over campaign finance and Chinese spying scandals, to be attorney general. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, on NBC's ``Meet the Press'' and CNN's ``Late Edition,'' said he had lost confidence in Reno's ability to lead. ``The Justice Department is in a shambles. There is a demoralization over there because they realize they are not doing the job.'' FBI Director Louis Freeh, in contrast, is the ``single best'' director he had known, Hatch said. On Freeh's reported differences with Reno, Hatch said ``you don't want some milquetoast guy in there who won't stand up and do what's right.'' .....Freeh was not FBI director at the time of the Waco siege, but did head the agency later when Reno, relying on FBI information, was denying that flammable devices were used against the Branch Davidians. ....``Maybe Louis Freeh is to blame too,'' Gramm said. ``Maybe they both should go.'' ...."

FrontPage Magazine 8/27/99 Chris Weinkopf "...IN JULY, Justice Department spokesman Myron Marlin complained about a new round of allegations that the FBI had fired pyrotechnic devices at the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas, in 1993. "It's just plain nonsense," he groused, reiterating the six-year-old Justice Department line. His boss, Attorney General Janet Reno, said the same, stressing that she had "gone over everything," and that there was "no such evidence." But on August 25, the Department recanted, conceding that yes, the FBI might have fired incendiary shells on that fateful day. So, either Janet Reno had not, in fact, "gone over everything," or she had simply chosen to hide damaging evidence from a congressional committee and the American public. Either way, she lied......It was a good lie, too-convincing enough that the media bought it for six years-and the Justice Department might have never come clean were it not for an unexpected turn of events..... The Justice Department now admits what it can no longer deny, but nothing more. Miss Reno points the finger at unnamed subordinates, blaming them with providing her "information that [proved] to be inaccurate." ......In 1993, independent investigators ruled that the FBI was not responsible for the blaze. But because their study took FBI denials at face value, its conclusions are now cast into doubt......And as long as federal denials are up for re-examination, here's another: the Justice Department's statement that the "FBI never fired a shot during the 51-day standoff." Infrared-camera images in Waco: The Rules of Engagement plausibly suggest otherwise. Some experts believe that the clips show FBI agents, while the compound is ablaze, shooting machine guns into the building, thereby dissuading anyone-anyone still standing after hours of exposure to severely debilitating tear gas-from escaping. The Dallas Morning News reports that Mike McNulty has recently obtained Texas Department of Public Safety footage of an FBI helicopter, hovering above the compound, raining machine-gun bullets onto the complex below. ...."

 

NewsMax.com Geoff Metcalf 9/6/99 "....The unnecessary tragedy of Waco is unraveling like a cheap rug. Janet Reno is metamorphosing from "I take full responsibility" to "Gosh, my subordinates lied to me. ... It's not really MY fault." Reno's pursuit for the truth of Waco is rivaled only by O.J.'s search for the "real" killers of Nicole and Ron. So how come a federal judge was required to resolve a dispute with the Texas Rangers over evidence? As the New York Times reported, "A federal judge was forced to intervene Friday after federal officials tried to block Texas Rangers from entering a Waco storage facility to search for evidence that pyrotechnic devices were fired at the Branch Davidian complex. That brief skirmish came the same day FBI officials in Washington released the second of two newly discovered aerial videotapes that include conversations between FBI commanders about the use of combustible teargas canisters."

NewsMax.com Geoff Metcalf 9/6/99 "....Janet Reno should resign, be fired "with prejudice," impeached for either incompetence or conspiracy, or sued under Title 18, Chapter 13, Section 242, which addresses the subject of deprivation of rights under color of law:

Whoever, under color of any law, statute, ordinance, regulation, or custom, willfully subjects any person in any State, Territory, Commonwealth, Possession, or District to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured or protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States, or to different punishments, pains, or penalties, on account of such person being an alien, or by reason of his color, or race, than are prescribed for the punishment of citizens, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both; and if bodily injury results from the acts committed in violation of this section or if such acts include the use, attempted use, or threatened use of a dangerous weapon, explosives, or fire, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both; and if death results from the acts committed in violation of this section or if such acts include kidnapping or an attempt to kidnap, aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to commit aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to kill, shall be fined under this title, or imprisoned for any term of years or for life, or both, or may be sentenced to death.

NewsMax.com Geoff Metcalf 9/6/99 "....The Texas Rangers apparently have been trying to uncover facts, but although "One Riot ... one Ranger" may be sufficient, when taking on the obstructionists in Reno's Justice Department, a reasonable judge helps. "Agents from the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms assigned to maintain custody of the evidence stockpile told the Rangers that their lawyers in Washington had ordered them to deny the Rangers entry."

NewsMax.com Geoff Metcalf 9/6/99 "....Now the New York Times reports, "The Pentagon's elite Special Operations Command sent observers to the siege at the Branch Davidians compound in Texas more than a month before the final assault on the compound, suggesting that military commandos had a far longer and closer involvement in the disastrous operation than previously divulged." President Bill Clinton and his cover-up queen Reno are once again in deep kimchee. For years many of us have been suggesting Clinton/Reno specifically either violated Posse Comitatus (which prohibits the U.S. military from active involvement in domestic law enforcement), OR covertly issued a presidential waiver. Now the White House has consistently denied Clinton ever issued any such waiver. I don't buy it. I spent 20 years in the military, active duty, National Guard, and reserve. I have commanded a Special Forces Operational Detachment and a Military Police Company. I've served on staffs at Battalion, Brigade and Division levels. I encountered a wide spectrum of officers, some with huge egos and poor judgment. However, even the most arrogant, myopic, venial, and intellectually challenged officer would never do what was done at Waco without a "get out of jail card" from some higher up. Maybe in an isolated jungle, or remote mountain, but not in Waco, Texas with TV cameras pointed at them....."

The O'Reilly Factor/Fox News 9/6/99 Freeper truthkeeper "...I'm absolutely shocked that no one has posted something on this show yet. Did anyone see David Schippers on O'Reilly tonight? WOW!!! What an amazing and terrifying show! Schippers described the Justice Dept. as "an out of control monster" and "above the people and answering to absolutely no one - not even Congress." He described how they brazenly obstructed and impeded the impeachment inquiry and weren't even subtle; they just flat-out said "NO" to all the Judiciary Committee's requests. I can't possible describe all the ground he covered, even with being muzzled by Justice. O'Reilly was fantastic, just jumping in and putting two and two together with prodding questions. O'Reilly asked him "What would happen if you just came out and told me what was really going on? Would the Justice Department just slap the cuffs on you and take you away?" Schippers: "I don't want to find out, Mr. O'Reilly...I don't want to find out." Schippers and O'Reilly working together painted a terrifying picture of an out-of-control Justice Dept. and "a RICO presidency" (O'Reilly's words). O'Reilly kept hammering away, asking why Reno isn't "a traitor" (like he has been for the past two weeks). Schippers gave some fascinating and not-as-cautious-as-you-would-think glimpses of many of the different WH investigations, and boy...did he ever indict his fellow Democrats. In the middle of their interview, a staffer handed O'Reilly a breaking story that Dan Burton has subpoened the U.S. Attorney from California, Steven Mansfield. It's spilling out that some Justice bigwig (sounded like Lee Ramik?) had contacted him in the middle of the Buddhist Temple investigation (I thought Bill said BY LETTER, unbelievable if true) and ORDERED HIM TO CEASE AND DESIST WITH HIS INVESTIGATION IN THE MATTER. O'Reilly's eyes about bugged out of his head, his mouth dropped open and he shook his head and looked into the camera, stating something like "I just can't believe all of this!" Schippers just nodded his head affirmatively and looked as disgusted as a human being could possibly look. ...."

 

Judicial Watch 9/7/99 Joe Giganti "...."For years Judicial Watch has witnessed first-hand the cover-up and deceit of the Clinton Justice Department in our various lawsuits. Now, with the recent revelations about Waco, Congress, as it embarks upon an election period, appears to be waking up from its long post-Monicagate sleep, to again capitalize politically on the recent events. As has been commonplace over the years, Senators and Congressmen go on national Sunday morning talk shows and complain about Janet Reno and her corrupt Justice Department, but when called upon to state whether they want her resignation, only two, Congressman Bob Barr and Senator Phil Gramm, give a straightforward answer. Last Sunday, when asked this question, the Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Orrin Hatch -- the body with the principal duty to oversee and supervise the Justice Department -- literally began to uncontrollably stutter. The common person must ask what do these Senators and Congressman have to fear? Does Reno and her ruthless Justice Department have something on them? If they do not do their duty and quickly call for her resignation, and then impeach her if it is not forthcoming, then they too should be forced to resign." "As a former alumnus of the Justice Department, I am saddened at how this once great institution has been disgraced under the Clinton-Gore Administration. Because of its politics, inaction and cover-up, all Americans are at great risk," added Klayman...."

http://etherzone.com/ 9/7/99 Ed Henry "...What possible reason was there for the federal government to descend in full military force upon its own citizens? This wasn't Watts, Chicago or Kent State. There was no riot. There were no fortified battlements, land mines, barbed wire, fences, or even a moat. These people were not outspoken critics of anything. These were American citizens, not much different from any of us except for their religious beliefs. Why, under a full media blitz and campaign to discredit them did the federal government hold these people hostage for 51 days, and do so while "mooning" and blasting them with Nancy Sinatra's "these boots will walk all over you" day and night, only to end in crematory inferno we all saw on national television? A scene so thoroughly covered, we could almost smell flesh burning....."

http://etherzone.com/ 9/7/99 Ed Henry "...Sick as it may be, the only reason for not apprehending or serving David Koresh in some normal fashion seems to be that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms was facing a budget review. In other words, it looks like they wanted a dramatic media event to bolster their reason for being or justify the money they wanted from Congress...... And remember, as you watch congressmen on various talk shows, they have all seen the new McNulty documentary that is supposed to be 10 times more dramatically conclusive than his first award winning "WACO--The Rules of Engagement." How can they limit their interest to 2 cannisters and the FBI? ....."

 

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette 9/6/99 Meredith Oakley "...On July 13, 1995, the director of public affairs for the Treasury Department, home of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, issued a lengthy "memorandum to the press" detailing the weapons recovered from the Branch Davidian compound after the fatal fire. The list, according to the memo, was prepared by the FBI. It listed ........The only thing the list didn't include, by the FBI's own admission: "dozens of other items recovered from the compound such as dust covers, extractors, front and rear sights, gun cleaning equipment, bolt release levers, compensators, .50-caliber belt links and numerous other parts." My point: The FBI apparently was able to account for every single item in the extensive, illegal arsenal of the Branch Davidians' David Koresh, but for some reason still unexplained wasn't able to produce an accurate accounting of the items in its own arsenal. I refer, of course, to two CS tear gas grenades the FBI finally conceded were launched upon the Branch Davidians' compound. There could be others...... Why was all this material kept under wraps for more than six years after the FBI supposedly turned over to investigators all the evidence relating to the siege? Why is it surfacing only now? ...."

Waco reopens OC wounds AP Tim Talley 9/7/99 ".... Survivors of the Oklahoma City bombing and victims' family members are divided over whether new information about the government's role at the Branch Davidian standoff has any bearing on its investigation of the bombing. Jannie Coverdale said the disclosures about the FBI's use of potentially flammable tear gas canisters at the standoff in Waco, Texas, six years ago -- accusations denied by the government since the Branch Davidian blaze -- have raised even more questions. "I don't trust the information we've gotten so far about Waco or the information we've gotten on the bombing. I can't believe what we've been told," said Coverdale, whose grandsons, Aaron and Elijah, were among 168 people killed in the April 19, 1995, bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building. "After what I've heard about Waco, I'm beginning to blame the federal government for my grandchildren dying." ...."

 

www.drudgereport.com 9/7/99 "....**World Exclusive** **Must Credit DRUDGE REPORT** ....A former CIA agent who claims knowledge of a Delta Force shoot-out at Waco has been promised protection by investigators for a Senate committee after threats were made on the former agent and his son by federal law enforcement officers. The intimidation of the witness occurred last week when FBI agents warned the witness -- face to face -- that he was in violation of his CIA confidentiality oath and could be charged with "risking national security." According to congressional sources, investigators for Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, who heads a Senate Judiciary subcommittee with FBI oversight, have promised protection to former CIA agent Gene Cullen -- if his bona fides check out...... Questions have been raised throughout official Washington about the nature of the threats made against the whistleblower and if FBI Director Louis Freeh was directly aware of the intimidation. ....."Cullen was 'politely' reminded that he signed confidentiality papers when he was hired at the CIA," says one source. Cullen has told investigators that he was visited by agents after he granted an interview to the DALLAS MORNING NEWS two weeks ago. Cullen told the paper that he learned from Delta Force commandos that up to 10 members of the secret Army unit were "present, up front and close" in helping the FBI in the final assault on the Branch Davidian compound..... In the interview with the NEWS, Cullen stopped short of stating that Delta Force members admitted to him that they were involved in combat at Waco -- information Cullen plans to reveal under oath before Congress! This much is now known: Cullen was served a subpoena by congressional investigators last week.

Cullen has moved to a secret location and could not be reached for comment. Cullen has given an interview for the new film, WACO: A NEW REVELATION. On camera, the former CIA agent states: Delta Force members said they participated in a shoot-out during the final assault on the Branch Davidian compound in Waco...."

 

FrontPagemag.com 9/7/99 Chris Weinkopf "....WHAT COULD BE WORSE, an incredulous Matt Drudge asked independent Waco investigator Mike McNulty, than the prospect of the top-secret Delta Force, in violation of federal law, besieging a compound full of women and children? How about the Delta Force, McNulty answered, "shooting them as they try to escape the burning building?" That's worse-a lot a worse-and one senses that as more news about the Waco tragedy and cover-up sees the light of day, it will get worse still. Drudge interviewed McNulty Friday at a special "Drudge Report" panel at The Weekend in Colorado Springs, CO. There, McNulty, producer of the 1997 Oscar-nominated documentary, Waco: The Rules of Engagement, discussed its upcoming sequel, Waco: The New Revelation, to be released later this month. He also gave the audience a sneak preview-it was very disturbing. The new film continues where the last one left off, with experts analyzing infrared footage that seems to show federal agents firing machine guns into the burning compound. Only this time, McNulty and company have got their hands on an earlier-generation video, which means that the images are clearer. Now, viewers can see the silhouettes of two agents dropping out of a tank, onto the ground, and blasting away into the building's doorways. ...."

FrontPagemag.com 9/7/99 Chris Weinkopf "....The Davidians, to be sure, were not innocent bystanders. McNulty has no doubt that they did their part to create the fire. He says that they believed, on the basis of David Koresh's bizarre prophesizing, that God would use flames to protect them. As FBI-bugged conversations from within the compound demonstrate, and as survivors' testimony (that McNulty promises to include in the upcoming film) confirms, Davidians spread gasoline and other accelerants throughout the building. Federal agents listened to these conversations in real time. They knew that the Davidians were dousing their home in gas. McNulty says he has tape of officers, shortly before the conflagration erupted, dressed in fire-proof suits and wearing oxygen tanks (not just gas masks, which are necessary for protection against the tear gas). By all indications, they knew that the compound could explode, yet they fired pyrotechnic devices inside nonetheless. They punctured holes throughout the structure, thereby providing the inferno with the necessary ventilation to spread quickly. When the blaze began, they forbade fire trucks from coming to the scene. Most disturbingly, the evidence suggests that they kept innocents inside-at the barrel of a gun....."

FrontPagemag.com 9/7/99 Chris Weinkopf "....When he and his crew searched the Waco evidence, locked away in the Texas Department of Public Safety, they found more pyrotechnic shells, which had been discovered in the vicinity of the fires. Someone had mislabeled the equipment as gun-silencers, and were it not for McNulty's dirt-digging, the public would have never known the difference. Nor would Janet Reno. "I truly believe," McNulty told Matt Drudge, "that Miss Reno is kept in the closet of the basement of the Justice Department." Not that ignorance makes for much of an excuse-reckless incompetence is unbecoming in an attorney general-but it absolves Miss Reno of the sort of malice evidently rampant among her subordinates, some who were stationed in Waco, others who made decisions in Washington. Still, culpability for the disaster, or at least for its cover-up, clearly extends into the upper echelons of the federal government, with a paper trail leading all the way to the First Couple's White House residence. According to the testimony of Vincent Foster's widow, the late Clinton Administration official felt "personally responsible" for the Waco carnage. After Foster committed suicide, McNulty reports, a White House aide saw the First Lady's secretary, Maggie Williams, taking files-one marked "Waco"-from his office. Foster's intern testifies to receiving those documents, and bringing them to Mrs. Clinton's personal quarters....."

 

http://fps1999.webjump.com 9/7/99 John Culbertson "...In the continuing investigation into recent revelations surrounding the tragic events at Waco, FRONTLINE has obtained information that clearly shows the United States Army Special Operations Command had a long and highly involved role in the Federal law Enforcement actions against the Branch Davidians near Waco, Texas. Documents obtained by FRONTLINE show involvement of the US Military as early as December 17, 1992 in the planning of the raid on the Branch Davidian compound. An ODA, or Operational Detachment Alpha or in popular parlance a hand picked "A" team known as ODA 381 from the United States Army Special Operations Command located at Ft. Bragg, North Carolina received orders to proceed to Texas in order to participate in training BATF agents at Ft. Hood at the MOUT or Military Operations in Urban Terrain site. The ODA is not a normal component of Joint Task Force Six and planning documents indicate that USASOC had concerns regarding the legality of the proposed mission.

http://fps1999.webjump.com 9/7/99 John Culbertson "...The order known as "FRAGO "E" to OPORDER JT002-93 is dated February 14, 1993. "FRAGO" is a term that stands for Fragmentary Order. The US military defines FRAGO as "A FRAGO provides brief, specific, and timely instructions without loss of clarity, FRAGOs contain changes or information of immediate concern. These orders may be written or oral. The FRAGO will be issued to change an order that has already been issued." FRAGO "E" was issued to the detachment of at least 8 known soldiers who were operating under an OPORDER or Operational Order that had been issued in December of 1992. The order does not instruct the detachment members to take part in the assault on the Davidian Compound and it cautions the members of the detachment to follow the Rules of Engagement with respect to interfacing with BATF agents with extreme care. ....

http://fps1999.webjump.com 9/7/99 John Culbertson "...According to statements of detachment members and reports filed with USASOC the ODA arrived at Ft. Hood on February 22, 1993 and left in two parties on February 27, 1993 and February 28, 1993. The order called for the ODA to EXFIL or exit via UH60-L Blackhawk helicopters on February 27, 1993. Six members of the eight man detachment left in helicopters on February 27, 1993 according to reports filed with USASOC. Four members then left in two rental vans on February 28, 1993 according to the mission commanders report, but this raises questions as to the actual events and mission. According to the FRAGO "E" order ODA 381 was composed of eight persons. Reports filed after the mission indicate that ten persons were involved with ODA 381. It is known from reports that the Company Commander from Ft. Bragg arrived via commercial airline on February 24, 1993 but it is not clear if he was a passenger on one of the Blackhawks, he does not indicate whether this is so in his report...."

http://fps1999.webjump.com 9/7/99 John Culbertson "...USASOC had expressed reservations about the type of mission that was being planned and the possible legal and liability issues that such a mission posed. A fax cover sheet for a draft message to be sent to Joint Task Force Six regarding these issues a handwritten note expressed concerns and to "reinforce SOF resistance to potential "CHEATING" which seems to recur @ JTF-6." It is clear from the documents that FRONTLINE has examined so far that the Branch Davidian mission was controversial at best within USASOC. FRAGO "E" was the result of continual lobbying and mission redefinition on the part of BATF Headquarters and Joint Task Force Six. In an after action report detailing Special Operations Forces Involvement in the mission (JT002-93) the BATF had asked for a much larger involvement of US Military forces including SOT/CQB (Special Operations Tactics/Close Quarter Battle) training, Bradley fighting vehicles, on site medical evacuation assistance and assistance in planning. All of these items are clear violations of the Posse Comitatus Act..... The most telling part of this document comes in the statement of the "Possibility that drug-connection was overstated to secure cost-free SOF training and assistance. No mention of drugs in public media." .....Perhaps the most profound observation of the entire exercise comes from this document as well, "AS A GENERAL PRINCIPLE, WHAT SOF DO DOES NOT LEND ITSELF TO MOST LAW ENFORCEMENT SITUATIONS." ..."

The Reagan Information Interchange 9/7/99 Mary Mostert "....Editor's Note: Occasionally I receive an e-mail that gives me such important information I feel it needs to be shared with all you readers out there. This e-mail from a physicist explains the fireball at Waco - that fireball which the government said was deliberately set by the Branch Davidians. I believe this is valuable input which explains something that never made sense to me. I always FELT that those tanks ramming the Davidians building had a lot to do with the fire. This e-mail explains it. My source is known to me, but for the purpose of making sure he is not harassed, we'll just call him Gary. If you want to contact him, send me an e-mail at mmostert@originalsources.com and I'll forward it.

Mary Mostert

September 6, 1999

Dear M. Mostert:

I am a Physicist. The following may be of use to you in your development of written arguments involving the murder of the Branch Davidians.

1. The final assault involved a purposeful use of the physics of gases and the prevailing conditions to murder the residents of Mt. Carmel.

A. Military vehicles purposefully destroyed and opened the frontal exits, located near major hallways of the building on the windward side to open up conveying tunnels by which flammably-propelled CS gas could be injected into the house. The exits were then guarded to prevent escape.

B. The back was demolished leaving an opening in a position where a few remaining living souls would have to move to escape the violent conflagration generated by the frontal action. Most would be killed quickly as if put into a crematory retort alive.

C. The flammable carrier of the injected CS gas was ignited visibly from the upwind tank in video that has been shown in public since 1993. For Federal officials to state that the government did not start the blaze is to ignore direct video evidence that the gas did indeed burn, ans was indeed injected from the upwind side..

D. According to Bernoullli's principal, the pressure exerted by any fluid (air) will decrease as the velocity of that fluid increases. What this means is that the high velocity of the wind that day caused the back of the Mt. Carmel building to become a low pressure area, resulting in a 'sucking' of all of the burning gas through the entire complex toward the back opening.

E. With flaming gas being injected in huge amounts in the front, the huge, rapid burning of the complex HAD TO OCCUR with the conditions the way they were. There is no other final outcome possible.

2. Government agencies use experts to determine proper use of flammable, and gaseous agents when deployed on scene. THE GOVERNMENT AGENCIES PRESENT ON THE LAST DAY KNEW WHAT THEY WERE DOING AND WHAT THE RESULT WOULD BE -- THE DEATHS OF AS MANY LIVING SOULS IN THE BUILDING AS POSSIBLE BY FLAMES. There is no other acceptable possibility. This is a case of MURDER, and the laws of physics concur with the judgment.....

According to my viewing of the videos, it is possible that the fires inside were initiated by simple kerosene lamps as the real cause of the flames, the injection and ignition of gases in the front moved through the structure. This would answer why they all seemed to start in a sequence which would mirror the movement of the fluid through the building. This WAS MURDER.....The gas initiated flames would have left a visible 'char' in large segments on all of the burned wood in the hallways which would have shown beyond all doubt that the flames were gas initiated. We will never see this evidence as it was destroyed, again on purpose, the same day...."

9/7/99 JC Huntington presentation "...One of the items Hardy has unearthed is a memo showing that some eleven days into the Davidian siege, the FBI obtained 40 mm illuminating ammunition from the army.

From this page of Hardy's site we learn that:

* The illuminating ammunition is pyrophoric (capable of igniting spontaneously in air)

* The FBI had previously set fire to a cabin using 40 mm illuminating ammunition

* The FBI acquired 50 rounds of 40 mm illuminating ammunition 11 days after the Davidian siege began.

* The Davidian buildings burned to the ground

* The FBI was allowed to keep the 'unfired' illuminating ammunition

Hardy points out that since the Davidian buildings were illuminated with million-candle-power search lights (e.g. click here), that it is difficult to understand the need for the illuminating ammunition. Moreover, with the FBI allowing to keep the unfired ammunition, there was no need for paperwork showing the number of rounds returned to the army; no paperwork indicating if any of the pyrophoric rounds had been fired...."

9/7/99 JC Huntington presentation "...On Sunday, 5 September, David Hardy and Michael McNulty, producer for the film Waco: The Rules of Engagement and Waco: A New Revelation, appeared on Fox News Sunday (a portion of that the transcript appears at the end of this article.)

Tony Snow asked about the possibility that the conflagration at the Davidian complex was started by the FBI or Delta Force; Juan Williams followed up with a question to McNulty and McNulty said:

* 40 mm projectiles which preliminary analysis shows to be pyrophoric ammunition, were found in the evidence held by the Texas Rangers

* There are indications that the 40 mm pyrophoric ammunition passed through the Davidian building.

* That the 40 mm pyrophoric ammunition had a 'submunition' (apparently and explosive used to disperse the pyrophoric material into the air; in other words, the submunition would fire first dispersing the pyrophoric material, which would then ignite). ...."

9/7/99 JC Huntington presentation "...A sequence from the film Waco: The Rules of Engagement shows a tank backing away from the Davidian complex. As the tank retreats, the FLIR picks up a double flash inside the Building. Here is how Dr. Allard describes this double flash in Waco: The Rules of Engagement: That flash was so bright that the operator of the FLIR thought it was so significant that he decided to fix his cursor in that area to remind him or other people looking at the tape that there was a very significant flash in the window. Now when we see it in slow motion, and we see the flash, it appears to be a single flash, but it is not a single flash. It is actually two flashes, a primary flash and a secondary flash and both of these flashes last about 1/2 second each. They are most likely detonations inside the building itself...."

 

San Francisco Chronicle 9/8/99 Alexander Cockburn "….The ashes of the murdered Branch Davidians and their children -- around 80 of them, though we can't be sure -- were still glowing as almost all the nation's major news institutions rousingly endorsed the decision of Janet Reno and her boss, Bill Clinton, to give the FBI (and as it turned out, the Delta Force) the go-ahead for an operation that ensured massacre. It was one of the great failures of American journalism, one of the most sickening, one of the most predictable, and one of the most revealing. Liberals, by and large, were worse than conservatives in giving Reno a vote of confidence……Use the word "cult," and both reason and moral judgment enter recess. So now comes further proof of the lies, deceptions and cover-ups of the FBI, and how do the big press poobahs react?….As with Koppel, the problem for these CBS broadcasters is not one of overweening and murderous government (entirely in control), but of potential sedition. Anything that disturbs popular torpor is tactically inept. …… As Dan Gifford, executive producer of the earlier "Waco: The Rules of Engagement" pointed out on Sept. 3, "No national news organization is saying anything at all about the government's careful prepping of the Davidian building to burn, nor its machine-gunning of the Davidians in the burning building that is so clearly shown in the FBI's own aerial surveillance video that is included in 'Waco: The Rules of Engagement."'

San Francisco Chronicle 9/8/99 Alexander Cockburn "….One riposte of the state to the latest Waco disclosures is to emphasize, as did CBS's Blackstone, that those who mistrust government are by definition subversive, dangerous and possibly homicidal, and therefore, deserving of incineration. A Reuters story by Jim Wolf, put out on Aug. 31, sets the stage. "The U.S. government is preparing for possible violence from cults, guerrillas, hate groups and end-of-world-fearing zealots as 2000 approaches," the report began. "The Federal Bureau of Investigation expects to see increased and possibly violent activities among certain groups related to the millennium," a top official warned Congress in July. So, we can see the stage being set for the next Waco…."

The Village Voice 9/7/99 James Ridgeway "…Anyway, by Friday the dead Davidians were forgotten as Washington reporters turned Waco into a battle royal between Reno and FBI director Louis Freeh over new allegations of mistrust between the two. "Louis Freeh and I have one of the best relations in law enforcement," Reno insisted at her Friday briefing. "You all are going to try to make us enemies but you're not going to succeed." …..The truth is likely to out in Texas federal district court, where, until last week, the government was resisting the judge's order to produce documents about the case in a lawsuit brought by families of the victims. If the Clinton administration or the U.S. Congress doesn't get to the major players first and grant them immunity, it is in this arena that we may actually find out what happened, including such things as the role of the secret Delta Force (which botched the Iran desert landing in Jimmy Carter's presidency) and whether the liaising of military with civilian law enforcement was a breach of the posse comitatus law…."

9/7/99 The Dallas Morning News David Jackson Lee Hancock "…Former Republican Sen. John Danforth of Missouri is Attorney General Janet Reno's top choice to direct an outside investigation of the FBI's 1993 siege at the Branch Davidian compound near Waco, Texas, officials said Tuesday. Justice Department lawyers spent the day negotiating the staffing and scope of the investigation with Danforth and hope to make a formal announcement Wednesday, said officials speaking on condition of anonymity….. Even if Danforth is appointed by Reno, members of Congress have vowed to pursue their own inquiries. ….."

9/7/99 The Dallas Morning News David Jackson Lee Hancock "…Records provided to GAO for its report, commissioned by Congress to examine military assistance provided to civilian law enforcement during the 1993 siege, by a Pentagon official indicated that five special forces soldiers were sent to Waco to provide and maintain specialized technical equipment and observe government actions. But other travel records discovered in the files of the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms indicated that eight people from special forces were present at various points during the 51-day siege, said Melissa McDowell, one of the principal investigators. McDowell said Pentagon officials asked the GAO not to directly contact Special Forces but provided requested documentation on their involvement. She said many of the documents were heavily redacted, with all information of the names and units of the military personnel blacked out. She said she also ``wasn't allowed to write down'' information that remained about when each of the soldiers was in Waco…… "

9/7/99 The Dallas Morning News David Jackson Lee Hancock "…She said military documents indicated classified technical equipment provided to the FBI in Waco included highly specialized robot-driven video equipment as well as electronic jamming equipment…..But some of the documents came from the military's joint special forces operations command, which oversees Delta, Army Green Berets, U.S. Navy SEALS and U.S. Air Force special operations teams….. the chairman of the Texas Department of Public Safety Commission, James B. Francis of Dallas, told The News late last month that Texas law enforcement authorities have evidence that may corroborate reports of active Delta Force involvement in the April 19 debacle. McDowell said the two-year GAO inquiry was brought to a close before investigators could resolve the discrepancies between the defense department documents and the travel documents found at ATF……She noted a letter provided by the Pentagon official to GAO stated ``some sensitive equipment was loaned with three personnel and two other individuals observed justice operations.'' ``That's the amount that we were asking about. It's not eight people,'' she said. ``We were unable to find out why that was. We were never able to solve that problem.''

9/7/99 The Dallas Morning News David Jackson Lee Hancock "…The other question left unresolved was the supply of 250 40-mm high explosive rounds to the FBI's hostage rescue team. Records from Fort Hood's III Corps indicated that the Army supplied those rounds along with 50 illumination rounds and 200 practice rounds to the hostage rescue team, along with a refresher training session in mid-March 1993 at a Fort Hood firing range. FBI agents were armed with shoulder-fired grenade launchers, and they used those to fire both nonflammable tear gas and pyrotechnic tear-gas rounds during their final assault…….While military records tracked a specific FBI agent requesting and receiving the illumination and practice rounds, however, there were no records to explain who asked for the high-explosive shells and why they were needed in Waco. ``We questioned it and we weren't able to get any more information,'' she said….."

9/7/99 The Dallas Morning News David Jackson Lee Hancock "… She said the inquiry did not include an examination of FBI records and the only documents showing that the rounds were sent to Waco were computer printouts from Fort Hood that also listed the deployment of illumination and practice 40 mm rounds……``III Corps reported it. They have paperwork showing it was given and consumed and not paid for,'' she said. ``It wasn't the only thing we couldn't find paperwork for. ... We questioned it and were not able to get any information.'' …"

9/7/99 The Dallas Morning News David Jackson Lee Hancock "…McDowell, the GAO investigator, said she recently went back to her records from the inquiry after news reports indicated that other military rounds, M-651 pyrotechnic CS tear gas canisters, had been fired by FBI agents in Waco. She said her records indicated those rounds were not provided to the FBI any U.S. military sources during the course of the standoff….."

Washington Post 9/8/99 Lorraine Adams "…Attorney General Janet Reno has asked former senator John C. Danforth, a Missouri Republican, to head an independent inquiry into the 1993 Waco siege, a Justice Department official said today. …..The new information, which Reno said she was not apprised of until a former FBI official's account was published in the Dallas Morning News last month, does not implicate the FBI in starting the fire that killed 75 Branch Davidians on April 19, 1993. It has succeeded, however, in raising questions about what other information the FBI may have withheld or misrepresented…."

The Associated Press, via News Plus 9/7/99 Walter Mears "...A White House spokesman said President Clinton was concerned that Reno ``appears to have been misled and may have been lied to'' about Waco. But Sen. Phil Gramm, R-Texas, said even if she was, she should resign. ``Not knowing is not an excuse,'' he said. Gramm said the attorney general always seems to be the last to know. Two Republican presidential candidates, Steve Forbes and Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah, said they would have fired her by now. ``If the truth shows that I've done something wrong, then I will accept the consequences,'' the attorney general said Friday. ......."

Jon Rappaport 8/31/99 "...I SPOKE RECENTLY with a former ATF agent who was at Waco in 1993. He told me, "Now I think that was a manipulated event. We were all prepared for a big bust. It was laid out that way. We would have to show a tremendous collection of people and potential force... The higher-ups couldn't imagine it happening according to a different scenario. The people inside that compound were already judged. They were evil. They were dangerous. Since I left ATF I've had a chance to look at some of the evidence about the Davidians. Whether or not Koresh was committing crimes, I'm convinced the whole thing could have been handled in a direct way by a few people. No one would have died. But ATF couldn't change gears. They had to stage an assault. They had to be the marauders. That's the style." ..."

The Dallas Morning News 9/10/99 Lee Hancock "...A federal judge was furious Thursday after U.S. marshals in Waco hesitated to carry out his order to seize the contents of an entire government office and massive storage lockers holding evidence from the Branch Davidian standoff. U.S. District Judge Walter Smith ordered the seizure Thursday morning and was "infuriated" after the chief U.S. marshal for his district spent hours consulting with his agency's headquarters in Washington and the U.S. attorney's office in San Antonio before executing the raid on the Waco office of the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, officials said. "He was livid," said one source who spoke on condition on anonymity. "It appears that the marshals refused to execute his order until they went to Washington." ....... Observers say Thursday's incident is remarkable because Judge Smith's rulings relating to the 1993 tragedy have long shown little patience for criticism of government law enforcement actions against the Branch Davidians. ..... But an ATF spokesman in Washington confirmed that Judge Smith issued the order after hearing that the agency had recently begun discussing closing the office. The judge acted to ensure that the office's contents would be preserved. "There was, I guess on his part, some concern that the office might be closing," said Jeff Roehm, public affairs chief at the agency's headquarters. "It was pretty much expected." ..... The seizure came one week after Judge Smith flatly rejected a plea by the U.S. Justice Department, parent agency of the U.S. Marshals Service, not to take control of the government's evidence. It also comes eight days after the Justice Department dispatched marshals to the FBI to seize previously undisclosed videotapes showing that government agents used pyrotechnic tear gas against the compound - something the U.S. government denied for six years. ..... The ATF's Waco office that was opened to prepare for that trial included a large collection of case files, work papers and other documents amassed by ATF agents involved in the Branch Davidian investigation. The office also had custody of tons of debris, spent ammunition and other items from the siege not considered crucial to the federal government's criminal investigation of the sect. Sources said the marshals obtained the judge's order before lunch Thursday and spent several hours consulting with their superiors about whether to execute it. The judge, furious because his directive had been issued under court seal, then told the chief U.S. marshal for the district that the agency must comply immediately, officials said. Only then did the marshals carry out the order, seizing files and taking custody of keys to the storage facilities that hold what has been called "junk evidence." .... Last Friday, Judge Smith had to intervene before the ATF allowed the Texas Rangers access to the Waco storage facility containing the massive collection of evidence. The Rangers had asked to enter the facility to search for items relating to pyrotechnic tear-gas devices fired by the FBI......"

The Dallas Morning News 9/9/99 "...A military flare recently found among evidence stored after the Branch Davidian tragedy may have been one of two such devices fired by FBI agents to stop an intruder from entering the sect's compound during the standoff, an FBI official said Wednesday. Two of the incendiary illumination devices - M-583 Star Parachute flares - were fired in the early days of the 1993 standoff as members of the FBI's Hostage Rescue Team kept 24-hour watch over the Branch Davidian compound, FBI spokesman John Collingwood said. "From talking to people in our Hostage Rescue Team, at one time, when our floodlight illumination was not active, they shot two parachute illumination rounds because of concern about people trying to sneak into the compound," Mr. Collingwood said......James B. Francis Jr., chairman of the Texas Public Safety Commission, said the discovery of the device, in a mislabeled box marked "fired tear gas shell," was troubling because the government had powerful spotlights trained on the Davidian compound during most of the 51-day standoff and would not have needed a flare to light up the area. DPS evidence logs indicate that at least one other Star Parachute flare may have been recovered from the same area, the northeast corner or back side of the Branch Davidian compound. That device has not been located, and Mr. Francis said Rangers will return to Waco soon to try to find it.......The outside investigation will address the role of military personnel at the siege, as well as allegations that federal agents shot at the main Davidian building. The FBI denies ever shooting at the Branch Davidians, and the Defense Department says its Special Forces soldiers were present as observers, not participants in the assault. Another major focus will be whether the FBI fired pyrotechnic devices - those capable of starting a fire - into the compound's main building and why it took six years to acknowledge the use of two military tear-gas canisters......Texas law enforcement officials have said the recent discovery of a spent flare in the Branch Davidian evidence raised new questions about what else may be in the tons of evidence recovered after the compound burned......"

The Dallas Morning News 9/9/99 "...A retired Ranger captain who headed the agency's Branch Davidian investigation said Wednesday that the spent pyrotechnic devices recovered or photographed after the fire may have gone unnoticed because of the complexity of the crime scene and the relatively narrow focus of the Rangers' investigation. The investigators had to comb through a burned building that yielded 24,000 pounds of evidence, and their assignment was largely limited to developing a murder case from the deaths of four federal agents killed during the Feb. 28, 1993, firefight that began the standoff, retired Capt. David Byrnes said...Rangers focused on collecting evidence to prosecute surviving Branch Davidians for the agents' slayings and finding proof that the sect had stockpiled illegal weapons, he said. More than 40 illegal automatic weapons and a number of illegal silencers and homemade hand grenades were recovered from the compound wreckage, along with more than 300,000 rounds of ammunition. "The thing that I think we have to keep in proper perspective is that we're in a totally different atmosphere than we were six years ago," Capt. Byrnes said. "We were so focused and had such a limited scope or view down there. "There was so much evidence, and in every crime scene you have to make sort of a cut: what is credible or important evidence and what is not," he said. The devices that have reignited the Waco controversy - U.S. military flares and pyrotechnic CS grenades - "didn't have meaning to us at that time," he said. "I've never felt like we knew everything that went on down there." Capt. Byrnes also noted that the Rangers did not directly question any of the Hostage Rescue Team members during the crucial first days of their post-fire investigation, in part because the team was immediately flown out of Waco within hours after the compound fire. "They left so quick, they left part of their equipment up there," he said, adding that the fire was still burning when the FBI turned over the site to the Rangers. "They did get out of Dodge in a hurry."...."

www.worldnetdaily.com 9/2/99 Ron Engleman "...Government agents dressed in black, Nazi style helmets and black ski masks firing semi as well as fully automatic weapons indiscriminately into the side of a building. There were no visible targets, just people with jackets that said "ATF" on the back, hiding behind trucks and cars, shooting into the side of a building as though it were an empty old barn. We were told by a news head that the ATF had come under heavy fire while attempting to serve a search warrant on a heavily armed religious fanatic named Vernon Howell and his cult followers inside a fortified compound. Something didn't seem right to me. The more I watched, the more I questioned. If there is such heavy fire coming from inside, why are some of the ATF agents standing in the open firing into the building? How could they get close enough to put two ladders up against the building and climb onto the roof? ...."

Ft Worth Star-Telegram Washington Bureau 9/9/99 Ron Hutcheson Michael Towle "...-Congressiona Republicans pressed ahead with plans to investigate the Branch Davidian standoff yesterday as Attorney General Janet Reno worked out the details of an outside investigation headed by former GOP Sen. John Danforth. Hoping to guarantee Danforth's political independence, House Republicans warned Reno that they will call in their own outside investigators if Danforth does not have free rein to look into allegations of a government cover-up at the 1993 siege. ......"If there was a cover-up, we are entitled to know its details. Six years has been too long to wait for the truth," said Rep. Henry Hyde, R-Ill, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee...... "I think we need to find that out: How did that happen, who did it and why were we not given full information or accurate information," Lott said, adding that he believes Reno should resign. ......"An inquiry run by the Department of Justice--no matter who is named to head it--is no substitute for public hearings before Congress," said Rep. Bob Barr, R-Ga., a leading Reno critic. "This is no way to assure the American public the truth is being told about Waco." .....The House Government Reform Committee, headed by Rep. Dan Burton of Indiana, has been the most aggressive, issuing subpoenas for information from the Texas Rangers, the FBI, the Pentagon, the White House and other law enforcement agencies. Committee spokesman Mark Corallo said the Texas Rangers are expected to respond this week to subpoenas seeking all documents related to the use of the pyrotechnic tear gas devices and the Rangers' final report on the siege. Another subpoena seeks photographic evidence held by the Texas law enforcement agency. "We're trying to gather all the information we can right now on pyrotechnic devices and the use of the military," said Corallo. He said congressional hearings could come in October or November...... "

Eagle Forum 9/8/99 Phyllis Schlafly "...But it [Waco] was a career-enhancer for Janet Reno, who at that time was President Clinton's most controversial Cabinet appointment, widely criticized by both right and left. Immediately after the Waco fire, she starred in an Academy Award- worthy performance before a Congressional committee, defending the FBI's actions to the hilt, confidently taking personal responsibility for all of the government's actions, and asserting that she would make the same decisions if she had the chance to do it all over again. Suddenly, the same people who were criticizing her began to praise her. ...... Why did the Clinton Administration attack a small and pitiful religious cult with a full-scale military offensive, using 700 men, machine guns, army tanks, and the secret, highly-trained U.S. Delta military force created for use against dangerous terrorists? Why did the FBI spend six hours pouring into the compound the gas known as CS, which is banned for use in war by the Chemical Weapons Treaty? ......All the excuses that Janet Reno proffered in her original defense of the FBI have been proven to be false. The cult wasn't any threat to others, it wasn't peddling illegal drugs, it wasn't engaged in unlawful child abuse, and its members had fewer guns per person than the average gun ownership of Texans...... On the day of the final assault, the FBI kept newsmen and television cameras on the side of the building where they couldn't see the real military offensive. Fortunately a plane overhead took pictures that millions of Americans have seen in the film "Waco: Rules of Engagement." ......As in other scandals of recent years, the government's coverup has compounded its original errors. The Democrats closed ranks to protect Clinton's appointees in the Justice Department and the FBI, and the Republicans dropped the ball because of their traditional mindset in favor of law enforcement. The danger America faces today is not from tiny, misguided religious cults. The greater danger to our lives and liberties comes primarily from arrogant, irresponsible, unaccountable law enforcement agencies such as the FBI and the BATF, especially when using the military for domestic law enforcement. ...."

Janet Reno news conference 9/9/99 Cincinatus' wife reports "....He has authority to investigate any suppressed info, if there were false statements, if pyrotechnic used or inappropriate gun use, cover up or illegal use of armed forces. He will have authority under new special counsel rules. Danforth: Want to find our if there were cover-ups, did Federal agents kill people. Were there bad acts not bad judgement. Our country can survive bad judgement but bad acts, they undermine goverment. He wants to know if government killed people, if ATF should have been investigating Branch Davidens and if they acted properly during the siege. He said he will have power to get to all the facts and empower a grand jury and he hopes these facts will be made public to the American people. If we every get to the grand jury, then secrecry will be in place and that will create a fine line with getting info to the public. The quality of people will make this credible so he has selected Ed Dale (?...I'm not sure of this name.) to be deptuy special counsel. ...." Freeper comments "Important: Danforth just said that today he will visit with the 3 chairmen of the congressional committees who will also be investigating Waco. He said he intends to ask them to forward all their information to him. That's a good thing The bad thing is Danforth's point of contact (overseer) at the Justice Dept is Eric Holder. Good GAWD!! Even if Holder wasn't at Justice during Waco, he most certainly will be looking out for the best interests of Bill Clinton and Web Hubbell. ...."

Judicial Watch 9/9/99 Joe Giganti "...Judicial Watch was pleased to read reports that Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott has joined in Judicial Watch's call for Attorney General Janet Reno's resignation. Lott's statements regarding Reno's behavior: "...I think the attorney General is falling into a pattern of not showing competence...", "...It's based on the pattern now that has developed over 61/2 years...that leads me to conclude that the Attorney General should resign," echoes the stance that Judicial Watch has taken for many years. Hoping that Lott's pronouncement is not just lip service to an outraged American electorate as the 2000 elections approach, Judicial Watch encourages the Majority Leader and the Congress to take action. "If Lott wants to be taken seriously, he needs to set a time certain by which she should resign. If she doesn't resign by that time, then she should be impeached and removed" stated Larry Klayman, Judicial Watch Chairman and General Counsel. "Reno has proven time and again that she is neither honest nor competent. The Congress puts the American people at great risk the longer they allow her to remain as Attorney General" said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. The ball is in the Republican-led Congress' court and it is time for it to put political rhetoric and expedience aside and put America's best interests first. The Congress should give Ms. Reno a deadline to step down. If she does not, then Majority Leader Lott should consult with House leaders to draft articles of impeachment. It is time to put words into action...."

www.WorldNetDaily.com 9/9/99 Craige McMillan "...For five years, some of us have not believed the federal government/ ABC/ NBC/ CBS/ PBS/ NYT/ FBI version of what happened at Waco. The problem wasn't sources. There were plenty of them. They stood behind podiums and had big, official-sounding titles and self-important airs about them as they looked into the cameras and gave us the "facts." The problem was, we didn't believe them. Somehow, their stories just didn't add up..... John Ulman, who edited a book on investigative reporting, explains it like this: "... what distinguishes their (investigative) reporting from that of most of their colleagues is that investigative reporters know more about how things are supposed to work, and therefore more about how to get the real answers" (The Reporter's Handbook, St. Martin's Press, 1991). ..."

www.WorldNetDaily.com 9/9/99 Craige McMillan "... Therefore, while the government was saying it was all a tragic accident that the Davidian buildings burned and those children died, those who knew how things were supposed to work were saying things like this: "... my wife and I returned to our hotel room and flipped on CNN to see the latest developments in Waco. The Branch Davidian compound was burning. My wife cried. She knew that there were many children in that compound. She asked me why. Why are they burning the compound? "I told her the simple truth: They have to burn it. Has anyone here (police officer audience) seen and read the Waco search warrant affidavit? It's crap. It didn't establish enough probable cause to even knock on the Branch Davidian's door. "When the FBI took over from the BATF ... they knew they would find no illegal weapons in the Branch Davidian compound. They were between a rock and a hard place. Four ATF men dead, and an unknown number of Branch Davidians dead, the FBI had only one choice: destroy the compound so that no one could ever prove whether illegal weapons were present or not. ... The FBI did not pump CS gas into the Branch Davidian compound to force its occupants to come out. They pumped that gas in to make sure the occupants couldn't come out," so said Lt. Harry Thomas in the Aid & Abet Police Newsletter (September 1994, pages 12-13). ...."

www.WorldNetDaily.com 9/9/99 Craige McMillan "....The mainline press, for the most part ignorant of Hemingway's essential tool, quickly dubbed those who knew enough to question the official story "conspiracy theorists." They demanded our evidence and our sources. Since our evidence was that there was no evidence -- or that what was there didn't add up -- we were quickly dismissed..... Anyway, had they been able to determine that their facts didn't add up, what would they have cited as their source: Thinking? Logic? Reason? Isn't all truth relative? Isn't contradictory evidence simply "your truth" or "my truth"? Isn't it wrong to be judgmental? Does it matter that the press failed America? The FBI incinerated nearly 80 people, for the sole reason that their continued existence was inconvenient to those in power in the government. The BATF lied about their evidence to obtain search warrants -- then murdered the Davidians who tried to defend themselves against a "raid" that should never have taken place. The proud members of Delta Force, the elite military unit sworn to uphold the Constitution and protect our citizens got to conduct target practice on some unpopular Americans. The attorney general of the United States grew in stature for "accepting responsibility." (Different story now, isn't it?) Bill Clinton's administration continued to exist, and PBS/ CBS/ NBC/ ABC/ ETC. got continued free use of the public airwaves so they can sell us soap and pledge breaks. What America got out of it is somewhat less clear....."

Fox News Wire 9/9/99 AP "...Timothy McVeigh's trial lawyer says he believes full disclosure of the FBI's actions in the Branch Davidian standoff would have eliminated the motive for the Oklahoma City bombing two years later. Stephen Jones said he agrees with prosecutors who believed McVeigh was angry about the outcome of the government's attempt to arrest David Koresh at the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas, in 1993. The ensuing 51-day standoff ended in a fire that killed Koresh and about 80 followers. "Had the wheels of justice worked and there been an independent investigation and the responsibility assessed, there would have been no reason for an attack on the federal government in Oklahoma City,'' Jones said in a Tulsa World story published today. "Oklahoma City was a retaliation for what happened at Waco and the cover-up,'' Jones said. "Much of what has come out in the last 10 days we knew in 1996 and 1997.'' ..."

The Economist (London) 9/4/99 Edtorial "....LONG after the flames had died down, people kept floating theories about government criminality and cover-up in the siege, six years ago, of the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas. America's militia groups, and some of the more conspiratorial circles in Washington, kept up a steady stream of gossip on the Internet. A perfunctory investigation soon after the FBI raid on the compound, which left 80 people dead by gunshot or fire, was ignored. Now, after days of new revelations and admissions by the Justice Department, the conspiracy theories have suddenly acquired a ring of truth....... "

The Economist (London) 9/4/99 Edtorial "....In many ways, the Justice Department's troubles stem from its own failure to conduct a thorough internal investigation after Waco. Immediately after the siege, the attorney-general-who had forthrightly taken responsibility-pledged a full accounting of what happened, and even convened an expert panel to investigate FBI conduct. Yet the panel's final report was wholly uncritical both of the FBI and the Justice Department. The only dissenting voice on the panel was that of Alan Stone, a professor of law and medicine at Harvard. According to Dr Stone, "The Justice Department never had a proper investigation of what happened at Waco, and the events of the past week prove that." Frustrated by what he believed were attempts by the Justice Department to stonewall the panel, Dr Stone conducted his own investigation, and even produced a report separate from the rest of the panel. It is very critical of the FBI's strategy of using tear gas, especially with so many children in the compound, and attacks the Justice Department for glossing over the facts about Waco. In the report's final pages, Dr Stone writes: One might think that the highest priority after a tragedy like Waco would be for everyone involved to consider what went wrong and what would they now do differently. I must confess that it has been a frustrating and disappointing experience to discover that the Justice Department's investigation has produced so little in this regard....."

The Economist (London) 9/4/99 Edtorial "....Although both Ms Reno and the FBI director, Louis Freeh (who was not in charge when Waco occurred), have indicated that they support an independent investigation into Waco, the Justice Department's record of stonewalling and ineptitude does not inspire confidence. For Ms Reno, who is in any case ill with Parkinson's disease, little of comfort lies ahead. At worst, she will be accused of knowing more than she let on and lying to Congress, a criminal offence. At best, she will be accused of knowing very little and being relatively unconcerned about finding out. For the conspiracy theorists, such a dilemma is sweet vindication indeed...."

Dallas Morning News 9/9/99 Lee Hancock "....But a GAO investigator said the inquiry could not fully account for why the FBI's tactical experts also obtained 250 high-explosive 40 mm rounds, devices commonly used as anti personnel ordnance, from Fort Hood during the standoff. Mr. Collingwood said the shipment, described by some military veterans as enough high-explosive rounds to supply an entire Army company, was probably a routine delivery for FBI tactical teams around the country. "I'm not sure it had any connection with Waco. All of our SWAT teams have them," he said, adding that the rounds were acquired from Fort Hood because "that's the only place you can buy them." Danny Coulson, founding commander of the FBI's Hostage Rescue Team, said the high-explosive rounds could have been sent to Waco as a precautionary measure....."

Freeper publius 9/9/99 observes "...To understand the tactics used at WACO, one must go back to the urban warfare tactics used by the Philadelphia police in the MOVE incident in 1985. The MOVE people were truly a strange bunch, and the Philly PD had it in for them after the 1978 incident, when 2 cops were killed in a firefight generated by a similar raid. When the police made their move in 1985, they dropped a bomb on the house and kept the fire department away so that the whole block would go up. Police blocked the exits and shot any MOVE members who tried to escape the conflagration. Of course when the few surviving MOVE crazies pointed this out at their trial, the police denied everything. Brutal fact: the cops wanted those people dead for a variety of reasons, some professional and some personal. Waco represents a further development of urban warfare tactics. The decision to move against the Branch Davidians began in the Bush Justice Department and reached execution on Clinton's watch. What most people are missing is that this was an action begun and prosecuted by an entrenched government bureaucracy, not a specific president....When the ATF people were killed, the government's position boiled down to one simple statement: these people had just committed an act of lese majeste, and thus the lives of every man, woman and child in that building were forfeit. The urban warfare manual was taken out, and plans were made to make sure nobody survived, except perhaps a few unlucky people who would be subjected to a show trial, imprisoned and forgotten. It was just another day in the life of an out-of-control government. Delta Force was there for both consultation and live training in urban warfare. It was probably their role to block the exits and shoot anyone trying to escape. They may have done it personally or may have used armed robots in a live test. That's why there was a company's worth of ammo at a supposed FBI event. Reno and Clinton should not be the only targets here. What we have is an incident showing straightforwardly that the government's law enforcement apparatus is truly out of control. It also shows just how passive the American people have become to a depredation that would have sent the Founders to their mantlepieces to retrieve the family rifle...."

 

AP 9/9/99 Libby Quaid "... ``Jack Danforth's entire public life was a testament to integrity in government,'' said Walter McCormick, a longtime Senate Commerce Committee aide to the senator. ``He will get to the bottom of it, and there will be no hide-the-ball.'' ..... A grandson of the founder of the Ralston Purina animal food empire, Danforth, 63, was born to wealth. He was active in his family's philanthropies and while in Washington ministered to elderly shut-ins and conducted Tuesday morning services at St. Alban's Church. A graduate of Yale Seminary and Yale Law School, he was elected to the Senate in 1976 after holding the Missouri attorney general's job for eight years. In Missouri, he is viewed as the progenitor of the modern Republicanism, with two of his proteges, Christopher Bond and John Ashcroft, now holding the state's two seats in the Senate. ``He has a capacity to be a bulldog,'' said Ashcroft, who won the race to replace the retiring Danforth in 1994. ``He's a man without prejudice.'' ....."

Fox News 9/9/99 Pete Yost "....Reno announced she is recusing herself from the Waco matter because "I will obviously be a witness'' in the investigation. Before the Waco assault, Reno said, she directed that only non-incendiary tear gas be used to avoid the possibility of triggering a fire that might endanger lives. With Reno's recusal, Deputy Attorney General Eric Holder would be the top person Danforth consults with at Justice... "

Reason Online 9/1/99 Javob Sullum "...The federal government is beginning to sound like Billy Joel. "We didn't start the fire," it keeps saying, every time the subject of Waco comes up.....Even if the government didn't start the fire, it created a situation where mass suicide was entirely predictable.... Despite fears that the confrontation would end in flames, the FBI did not have firefighting equipment nearby. And by knocking into the flimsy building with tanks, it closed off escape routes and created vents that made the fire spread more quickly. In The Ashes of Waco (Simon & Schuster), investigative journalist Dick Reavis reports that the tanks "demolished the stairways connecting the building's first and second floors, and also pushed debris over a trapdoor leading to a buried school bus, whose exit opened to the fresh air outside. The bodies of six women were found within feet of the trapdoor, dead of smoke inhalation." Six other women and children were killed by falling chunks of concrete knocked loose during the attack. Meanwhile, the tanks pumped in an aerosol consisting of CS powder, a chemical warfare agent that causes tearing, temporary blindness, nausea, and vomiting--symptoms that may have incapacitated Davidians who otherwise could have escaped--and methylene chloride, a toxic and volatile carrier that forms flammable mixtures when exposed to the air. In light of these details, it is sickening to recall President Clinton's summary of the disaster: "Some religious fanatics murdered themselves." Or Attorney General Janet Reno's assertion that the FBI had to bring the siege to a swift end because "babies were being beaten"--a claim that turned out to be a fabrication.........It is still hard to believe that the justification for the initial BATF raid that set the stage for this debacle was the suspicion that residents of Mount Carmel had illegally converted semiautomatic weapons into machine guns. For this victimless crime by a few of their members, scores of Davidians ultimately died......"

Reason Online 9/1/99 Javob Sullum "...During the siege, the residents of Mount Carmel were depicted as mindless drones under David Koresh's spell, while the FBI prevented any communication or press coverage that might have cast them in a more sympathetic light. To this day, people tend to imagine a sinister collective when they think of the Davidians, instead of individual human beings who asked for nothing but to be left alone...."

 

http://www.usdoj.gov/ag/specialcounselreg.htm 7/1/99 Janet Reno "...Office of the Attorney General 28 CFR Parts 0 and 600 A.G. Order No. Office of Special Counsel ..... EFFECTIVE DATE: July 1, 1999. .....The Attorney General is promulgating these regulations to replace the procedures set out in the Independent Counsel Reauthorization Act of 1994. These regulations seek to strike a balance between independence and accountability in certain sensitive investigations, recognizing that there is no perfect solution to the problem. The balance struck is one of day-to-day independence, with a Special Counsel appointed to investigate and, if appropriate, prosecute matters when the Attorney General concludes that extraordinary circumstances exist such that the public interest would be served by removing a large degree of responsibility for the matter from the Department of Justice. The Special Counsel would be free to structure the investigation as he or she wishes and to exercise independent prosecutorial discretion to decide whether charges should be brought, within the context of the established procedures of the Department. Nevertheless, it is intended that ultimate responsibility for the matter and how it is handled will continue to rest with the Attorney General (or the Acting Attorney General if the Attorney General is personally recused in the matter); thus, the regulations explicitly acknowledge the possibility of review of specific decisions reached by the Special Counsel..... (c) Closing Documentation. At the conclusion of the Special Counsel's work, he or she shall provide the Attorney General with a confidential report explaining the prosecution or declination decisions reached by the Special Counsel....The principal source of the problems with the Final Report requirement as set forth in the Independent Counsel Act is the fact that the Report typically has been made public, unlike the closing documentation of any other criminal investigation. This single fact both provides an incentive to over-investigate, in order to avoid potential public criticism for not having turned over every stone, and creates potential harm to individual privacy interests. Therefore, these regulations impose a limited reporting requirement on all Special Counsels, in the form of a summary final report to the Attorney General. This report will be handled as a confidential document, as are internal documents relating to any federal criminal investigation. The interests of the public in being informed of and understanding the reasons for the actions of the Special Counsel will be addressed in the final set of reporting requirements, discussed below. ....To help ensure congressional and public confidence in the integrity of the process, the regulations impose on the Attorney General these reporting requirements to the Judiciary Committees of the Congress. These reports will occur on three occasions: on the appointment of a Special Counsel, on the Attorney General's decision to remove a Special Counsel, and on the completion of the Special Counsel's work. These reports will be brief notifications, with an outline of the actions and the reasons for them....."

FRONTLINE Newsletter 9/9/99 Culbertson "...FRONTLINE has learned of operational involvement by members of the U.S. Army Special Operations Command during the 51 day standoff at the Branch Davidian compound located near Waco, Texas. In a document describing a meeting on April 14, 1993 in the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Director's Conference Room obtained by FRONTLINE contains information that shows members of the USASOC assisted the FBI in an operational capacity as early as March 19, 1993 by providing technical support to the FBI. According to the document, a memorandum prepared for the Commander of USASOC by one of it's members who attended the meeting three members of USASOC had deployed to Waco with Joint Chiefs of Staff approval. Two members arriving on March 19, 1993 with sophisticated equipment at the request of the FBI and one observer arriving on March 21, 1993......"

FRONTLINE Newsletter 9/9/99 Culbertson "...The memorandum goes on to detail how the three were present for the remainder of the standoff and observed the FBI assault from the FBI command post but were prohibited from videotaping the assault operation by the FBI. There is nothing in the memorandum to indicate that more than the three aforementioned members of the USASOC were present at the scene when the FBI launched it's final assault.

While the portion of the memo that reveals the type of equipment that was utilized at Waco has been redacted, it is generally thought to be ultra sensitive listening devices and sensors that were employed during the standoff....."

FRONTLINE Newsletter 9/9/99 Culbertson "...While the memorandum shows that USASOC was sensitive to the Rules of Engagement under which it was to conduct itself, there still exists the question of just how far did the assistance to the FBI Hostage Rescue Team (HRT) go? It is clear from from the memorandum that "All support to the HRT was approved by the Joint Chiefs of Staff."...The meeting started with a presentation by the scientist on CS gas and it's effects on humans. According to the account Attorney General Reno asked a variety of questions on the effects of CS and she was assured by the scientist and the FBI that the risks were low. The USASOC members were asked to assess the use of gas and they stated "if the objective of the FBI was to make the building uninhabitable, then CS would accomplish that." ...."

FRONTLINE Newsletter 9/9/99 Culbertson "...The memorandum details the FBI plan to use CS gas in a plan to "incrementally 'gas" the compound for up to 48 hours." After the continued introduction of the CS gas for up to two days the next phase would be to utilize an armored platform (Combat Engineering Vehicle) with a blade to start removing the front of the building. There is no mention as to any discussion of using CS gas for extended periods such as envisioned by the plan. Also no discussion was reported regarding the structural integrity or problems associated with the frame construction of the building or the risk of building collapse by using the CEV to scrape remove the front of the building. At no point are there any indications of discussion as to the safety of the persons inside the building or if there was any plan to attempt to protect the elderly and children at the time of the planned operation to remove the front of the building. ...."

FRONTLINE Newsletter 9/9/99 Culbertson "...This was part of a general hurry up and go attitude that prevailed in the meeting as characterized by the memorandum. The Attorney General questioned as to the need to go right away by asking "why now." She was told of concerns for the children and that there was no reason to believe that Koresh had any intention of coming out voluntarily. Concerns for the effects of the standoff on the HRT were voiced, yet the advice to replenish the skills by training the HRT away from the scene given by the members of USASOC was completely ignored. The excuse for going forward with the plan in the face of good sound advice on the part of experts with regards to the HRT must bring tactical judgment and motivations of those in charge and advocating this plan into question...."

FRONTLINE Newsletter 9/9/99 Culbertson "...One of the most highly advertised motivations for Timothy McVeigh and associates attack on the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building was the conduct of Federal officials and the outcome of the 51 day standoff with the Branch Davidians. New disclosures of previously hidden evidence and falsifications on the part of the FBI my well fuel another such event. Concerns on the part of some that the government is just too big and just too after them could result in another small group banding together to effect revenge or produce a preemptive strike against the government that some see as the beast......"

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/bluesky_Metaska/19990909_xctme_buried_tru.shtml 9/9/99 Tanya Metaska "...If we had to leave it up to the politicians, bureaucrats, and especially those in this administration, the whole investigation would be done in a smoke-filled room and would conclude in five minutes. But freedom-loving Americans from all parts of the political spectrum now have another opportunity to make their voices heard and have their questions answered. The major questions should include: What was the real reason the Bureau of Alcohol and Firearms (BATF) originally staged their illegal and foolhardy assault? Who was ultimately responsible for the fiery death of innocent men, women, and children -- the Davidians, the FBI, or even the illegal Delta Force? Who or what persons in the FBI spent six years covering up their illegal and murderous activities? ....What was the motivation behind the raid and why was the assault held at that time? On what was the BATF warrant based? Why did the BATF use police-state tactics against people they personally knew? Why did the BATF agents go ahead with the plan when their orders were to stop if the element of surprise was gone? Why did the original petition to the Department of Defense (DOD) from BATF, a petition that should have been certified by the attorney general as head of the Department of Justice, state that there was a methamphetamine lab on the Davidian Compound, thus requiring DOD involvement? ..."

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/bluesky_Metaska/19990909_xctme_buried_tru.shtml 9/9/99 Tanya Metaska "...Isn't it strange that the original affidavit seeking an arrest warrant for David Koresh stated, "I believe that Vernon Howell, also known as David Koresh, and/or his followers ... are unlawfully manufacturing and possessing machine guns and explosive devices." Special Agent Aguilera, who signed the affidavit, never actually witnessed the manufacture or the possession of such firearms or destructive devices. And to this date neither BATF nor FBI has ever produced any of the alleged machine guns that were used by the Davidians. Any firearms that were seized after the fiery destruction of the Mount Carmel Center were kept in the custody of the Texas Rangers. Since the guns had been in the center during the fire, they became inoperable and in most instances the intense heat melted them into one solid piece. It is now impossible to open the firearms and inspect them to determine, without damaging the evidence, whether they included the one part, a sear, which would classify them as machine guns.

Yet, there is a simple way to determine whether any gun included a sear -- X-ray the burned guns to discover whether steel sear is in the gun. In 1995 just prior to the House of Representatives Joint Committee Hearing on Waco, the Justice Department refused to let congressional investigators X-ray those guns. In the Treasury Department Report about the Feb. 28 raid on the Mount Carmel Center a firearms expert discussed the validity of the affidavit. He stated, "None of the many pieces of information available to me is sufficient, by itself, to answer the question as to whether Koresh and his followers inside the compound were engaged in assembling automatic weapons in violation of the National Firearms Act." In addition the expert noted that the various gun parts Koresh ordered "do not convert the rifle to automatic fire, except in combination with an automatic sear. There is no automatic sear listed in the accounting. ... The material made available does not indicate that the Branch Davidians received shipments containing automatic sears." ...."

MSNBC 9/8/99 Daniel Small "...At long last, Attorney General Janet Reno has selected an outside counsel to investigate the FBI's alleged cover-up of its actions in the 1993 Waco disaster. But the tortuous process leading to the appointment of former Sen. John Danforth only highlights new impediments for any independent investigation of official wrongdoing now that the independent counsel statute is dead. ...."

HGN 9/7/99 Freeper Plummz "...Matt Drudge is running with a story that a "former government officer" has told Congressional investigators that Delta Force soldiers said they engaged in a shoot-out with the Davidians during the final assault. The officer has named names and is set to do so under oath. It is not clear whether Drudge's informant is Gene Cullen, the former CIA officer who told a similar story to the Dallas Morning News last week. ....Meanwhile, the MAN is still trying to hammer home them message that the only people who care what happened at Waco are right-wing terrorists. This important theme was driven home in ABC's movie of the week ATF, which aired Monday night. Kathy Baker starred as the fictional BATF director who has to fight down a shadowy group of Christian gunsmiths called the "Patriots." ....."

News Conference 9/9/99 CNN Transcript "....JOHN DANFORTH, INDEPENDENT INVESTIGATOR: .....And I want to just summarize it for you so that there is a total understanding of this. Basically, when you boil down the half-dozen points that are in the order, they amount to two big questions that have to be resolved. The first question is, was there a cover-up? And the second question is, did federal officials kill people? That's the question of the cause of the fire, whether there was shooting, and so forth. And those are the two big questions. And those are the questions that we will be examining in this investigation. In other words, what we're going to be looking at is whether there were bad acts, not whether there was bad judgment. I want that understood. Our country can survive bad judgment. I take it that every day for the history of America there's been bad judgment, but the thing that really undermines the integrity of government is whether there were bad acts, whether was a cover-up and whether there was government -- and whether the government killed people. So what we are not going to be looking is whether it was advisable in the first place for ATF to be concerned about the Branch Davidians, whether it was a good idea or not to stage the raid in February of 1993 or in April of 1993 for that matter or the psychological efforts that took place in between. Those, I don't minimize the importance of those questions at all, but I don't think that those should be the questions for a special counsel. I think that they are questions that Congress can address, that the media can address or the American people can address or the political process can address. But they are really not subject of this -- of this investigation. ......QUESTION: Also, some people say that the Davidians did commit suicide, but they did so because of the government tactics. Given that criticism, can you look at -- can you fulfill your mission without looking at the entire episode?

DANFORTH: I think that it is important, and the reason for having this defined mission, is to keep parameters on what we're doing. And I think that what you've asked is really an important question and it's important to understand it. I take it that if, for example, ATF had never thought about the Branch Davidians, there wouldn't have been this loss of life. So in a way, you could say that any decision that was made, you know, was a decision that led up to what eventually happened. But I am not going to get into that. I'm not going to get into judgment calls, even if those judgments led to the eventual result, because I think that bad judgments -- and I'm not saying they were bad judgments, I'm not presupposing that at all, I have no opinion of it -- but whether they were good judgments or bad judgments is a different question than the dark question. ....I don't think that you get a special counsel with subpoena powers to deal with the judgment calls. I just don't think so. I think we try to deal with factual questions, and did the government -- really, ultimately, did the government kill people and did the government cover things up, not, you know, what was the chain of events going back to, you know, some earlier time that led eventually to a set of circumstances that led to this. ..."

 

http://www.thenewamerican.com/tna/1999/09-27-99/vo15no20_waco.htm Vol 15 No 20 9/27/99 William Norman Grigg "....Clinton Administration scandals display a common pattern. The initial disclosures of wrongdoing are indignantly denied. Pleas are issued by Administration spokesmen for people to "stay calm" and wait for "all the facts" to come out. A cover-up of the relevant facts is then undertaken. When damaging facts leak, Administration spin-controllers minimize their significance, or - if necessary - preside over a controlled release of further facts over a protracted period of time. When the full truth about criminal misbehavior, or some significant portion thereof, is finally made public, Administration spinners and their media allies insist that the public has grown weary of the matter and that it's time to "move on." This approach has served the Administration well in its efforts to surmount the Chinagate treason scandal, the Lewinsky affair, and numerous other episodes. Not surprisingly, the FBI has followed a similar approach in managing disclosures about its conduct in the 1993 slaughter of the Branch Davidian sect in Waco, which is the subject of a federal wrongful death lawsuit by survivors and families of the victims. ....... The coinage of new euphemisms is a major Clinton Administration industry, and FBI spokesmen enriched the vocabulary of double-speak by allowing that they would have to "recant or modify" the previous unqualified denials that FBI personnel had fired upon the Branch Davidians on that tragic April morning. This provided a segueway into the next step of the Administration's familiar spin strategy - playing for time to devise a new cover story: "We've seen the reports, and we're trying to get to the bottom of them," stated Justice Department spokesman Myron Marlin......In other words, the detailed account explaining the presence of the expended grenades was not new information. The FBI has knowingly, systematically, lied to Congress and the public about this matter, and the new "investigation" is an exercise in misdirection and delay....... Why did the FBI and Justice Department offer a damaging admission that undermines their new cover story? One possibility is that the admission was part of the third step in the Clintonite spin control process - the effort to minimize the significance of the long-denied but now inescapable facts. By admitting that two grenades were fired at the church several hours before the fires began, the Administration offered a tardy admission which actually allows them to cling to the official story that the Davidians were responsible for the catastrophic fire. It is important to understand that the FBI's chief concern is not to offer a candid disclosure of the relevant facts; as the Times observed, the FBI and Justice Department are "far more worried that the recantation will fuel the suspicions of people who have long doubted the Federal Government's motives and actions in the incident." As one anonymous official told the Times, "we're fighting the conspiracy theorists." ...."

 

 

http://www.thenewamerican.com/tna/1999/09-27-99/vo15no20_waco.htm Vol 15 No 20 9/27/99 William Norman Grigg "....The Times editorial board, while offering perfunctory criticism of the FBI and Justice Department for looking "at best sloppy and at worst untruthful," endorsed the Clinton junta's priorities in an August 27th house editorial by archly stating that the new disclosures gladden "the hearts of conspiracy theorists everywhere."

This is to say that the real scandal here is not the needless immolation of over 80 people, or the government's persistent, culpable dishonesty regarding that tragedy, but rather the fact that the evidence is vindicating critics of the government's actions. Any residual doubts that the FBI had engaged in a cover-up dissipated with the September 2nd "discovery" of a recorded conversation in which Richard Rogers, the Special Agent in Charge (SAC) during the final siege, authorized HRT supervisor Steven McGavin to use the pyrotechnic grenades. As the Los Angeles Times reported, Rogers "later sat behind William S. Sessions, then Director of the FBI, as he testified before Congress that no flammable munitions had been used" against the Davidians. Janet Reno ordered U.S. Marshals to seize the new evidence from the FBI, purportedly for use in the new inquiry - but as Reno's handling of the "Chinagate" inquiry demonstrates, her priority will be to bury the truth, not expose it...."

 

http://www.thenewamerican.com/tna/1999/09-27-99/vo15no20_waco.htm Vol 15 No 20 9/27/99 William Norman Grigg "....On August 27th, the Dallas Morning News reported that former CIA officer Gene Cullen had been informed that three or four Army Special Forces troops had been "present, up front and close" during the final assault on the Branch Davidian church. "When they explained to me the depth to which they were involved down in Waco, I was quite surprised," remarked Cullen. "They said basically they were out there in the ... Bradley [fighting vehicles], the CEV [tanks].... They were active." Absent a presidential waiver, such participation would constitute a violation of the Posse Comitatus Act, which forbids the military to participate directly in domestic law enforcement operations......A "Special Forces source" who possesses an "unredacted" copy of the notes from that meeting provided WorldNetDaily with critical facts that had been excised from the "redacted" version; according to the source, the document was signed by Colonel (now General) Boykin. According to the notes, "It was obvious that Attorney General Reno had already been briefed on the concept of the operation" - that is, to insert CS gas into the building for "up to 48 hours" and then "to use an armored platform with a blade to start removing the front of the building." ......"

 

 

http://www.thenewamerican.com/tna/1999/09-27-99/vo15no20_waco.htm Vol 15 No 20 9/27/99 William Norman Grigg "....The military officer who compiled the notes emphasized, "I made it clear that I was not encouraging an immediate execution of the operation. My exact words were, 'I don't have a dog in that fight.'" He also suggested that the FBI "should consider pulling their people off the target for a short while" to "retrain and polish" some of their skills. And he emphasized that "the plan which was executed at Waco was an FBI plan which neither [redacted] nor I helped prepare." The Special Forces source who consulted with WorldNetDaily commented that the notes clearly indicated that their author "didn't want to be directly involved in [the operation], and did not want to be dragged into it. Delta Force operators ... continually cautioned the FBI against attempting an 'Open Air Assault' on the target, and continually stated they did not want to be involved in firing on or [an] assault [upon] American civilians . These official and unofficial comments went ignored and, in fact, one Special Operations officer was threatened with court-martial if he continued to protest." This perspective, coming from a veteran of the Special Forces, underscores a critical point: The release of the redacted notes may have been intended to make the military the scapegoat for the FBI's debacle. This is not to say that the military was blameless in this matter or immune to political considerations.,,,,:

 

http://www.thenewamerican.com/tna/1999/09-27-99/vo15no20_waco.htm Vol 15 No 20 9/27/99 William Norman Grigg ".... Publication of the notes of the April 14, 1993 meeting precipitated a crisis at the Army's Fort Bragg Special Forces headquarters. "Special Forces command has sent the orders down the ranks that nobody is to talk to the press," a Special Forces source who has provided detailed legal depositions regarding the Waco tragedy told The New American. "There's nothing they can do about the facts that have already been publicized, of course, but they are trying to forestall the disclosure of even more damaging information. There are other shoes yet to drop, and I don't think that they're going to be able to catch them all." As the controlled implosion of yet another Clinton scandal produces new revelations, it is important not to lose sight of the most damning evidence: forward-looking infrared (FLIR) footage suggesting that FBI personnel gunned down Davidians who sought to flee from their burning home. SAC Rogers' go-ahead order to use pyrotechnic grenades was recorded on an aerial infrared videotape - presumably the same recording on which the incriminating FLIR footage is found. That order was issued at 7:49 a.m., several hours before the fire was ignited and the tell-tale heat signatures of automatic weapons fire directed at the compound were recorded. Mike McNulty, producer of the forthcoming documentary Waco: A New Revelation, asserts that Delta Force commandos were "deployed and pulling triggers" during the final siege at Mt. Carmel. ,,,,:

 

 

http://www.thenewamerican.com/tna/1999/09-27-99/vo15no20_waco.htm Vol 15 No 20 9/27/99 William Norman Grigg "....Two years ago in these pages ("Quartered Among Us," September 1, 1997), U.S. Army Sergeant First Class Steven Barry (ret.), who at the time was an active duty Special Forces soldier, pointed out that the Waco episode illustrates the danger of "fusing ... military and law enforcement operations." SFC Barry noted that the FBI's Hostage Rescue Team is a carbon copy of the Combat Action Group (CAG) of the Pentagon's Joint Special Operations Command: "HRT uses the same equipment, the training is identical, and HRT uses CAG's training facilities, instructors, and standard operating procedures." ......."Waco was not an aberration," concluded SFC Barry. "It was a 'trial balloon' sent up by those who perceive a 'coalition' of military and law enforcement to be a good thing. It was, therefore, a portent of the future. And the military's involvement in that unspeakable outrage, along with its subsequent cover-up of its involvement, bodes ill for America's future." As this is written, it appears that the Clintonite spin control ministry, displaying the institutional "loathing" for the military for which the Administration is properly notorious, appears to be angling to make the military the scapegoat for the Waco massacre. While military officials involved in the episode have much to answer for, it must be remembered that Bill Clinton himself must have issued a presidential waiver authorizing Delta Force involvement. ....."

CNN TalkBack Live 9/9/99 CNN Transcripts "...

BATTISTA: What questions in your mind does John Danforth's investigation need to answer?

REP. RON PAUL (R), TEXAS: Well, I think one question that he ought to answer that nobody has ever asked that I've heard so far is why in the world was the federal government even in Waco. Everybody's talking about the technical problems there and who did what and when, but the bigger question is why have we federalized all our crimes? It should have been handled by local police authorities. It should have been handled by Waco and that particular county and if -- at the worst or at the most it could have been the state of Texas, but never should the federal government been involved in an incident like this. They've turned it into a monster of a problem.

BATTISTA: So are you saying then that you don't think that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms should have been investigating this group and the alleged weapons' charges against them?

PAUL: Well, they were legal gun dealers. They hadn't broken the law. They weren't charged with the law. And anytime they were presented with a subpoena, they've always responded. So they were legal gun dealers and they had not committed a crime with a gun. So why would you call -- make a federal crime out of it. Even if they had, it was a local police matter turned into a monstrous situation.

BATTISTA: So what -- when those agents went there that day, what in your mind happened to lead to what happened that four of them were dead and several injured.

PAUL: Well, they went in with their guns blazing. They didn't knock on the door. They didn't call up and say come on out, which Koresh had done before. They went in with guns blazing. That's not how you serve a warrant. I mean, they were totally out of line. They were asking for trouble. They were looking for trouble and they got trouble. So they were -- they're the ones who broke the law and they should be held accountable.

BATTISTA: Representatives Waters, did this series of "mistakes," shall we say, lead to this whole thing? I mean, is the Congressman right? Should the federal government never have been involved in this?

REP. MAXINE WATERS (D-CA), HOUSE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE: I'm not sure. I've always felt uneasy and uncomfortable with what happened at Waco. Don't forget, I come from a time and place where we have fought law enforcement knocking in doors in the African-American community for many years. So I don't take kindly to law enforcement taking advantage, knocking down doors or running over people.

We really do need some facts to come out here, and I am very uncomfortable. And in retrospect, I wish I had asked more questions about it at the time that it happened. I think one thing's for sure: We can never feel good about government burning up human beings and children being burned up in this kind of confrontation.

I'm one of those who believe even if they had committed crimes that it's better to stay outside and wait them out rather than to rush in and burn them up. We had a situation back in 1985 in Philadelphia, an organization called MOVE. They were different too. They wore their hair in dreadlocks, they eat raw food. People didn't like their style. But the Constitution guarantees us we have freedom of speech and freedom of religion and freedom of privacy and all those things. And they burned up the people of the MOVE organization. They killed I think 11 adults and five children. The one person who was left that did not die, they put her in prison for over seven years. I don't think that should have happened. And so, I'm uncomfortable about it. ...."

 

Washington Post 9/9/99 David Vise Lorraine Adams "...Former Missouri Senator John C. Danforth, appointed today to head a fresh probe into the FBI's 1993 raid on the Branch Davidian compound that left about 75 people dead, said his goal is to determine whether the government killed people and whether there was a cover-up..... The Attorney General directed Danforth to report to Deputy Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. Danforth said Justice Department officials assured him that he will have authority to make key decisions and conduct an impartial probe...."

 

http://abcnews.go.com/sections/us/DailyNews/waco_danforth990909.html 9/9/99 "...Declaring his role "is to give the American people knowledge of what happened," former Missouri Sen. John Danforth said today his responsibility as chief Waco investigator will be to answer two questions: Was there a cover-up, and did federal officials kill people? ..... Danforth vowed that he is entering the controversy "with no preconceived ideas. But he did not underplay the seriousness of his task. "I see at stake the [words at the] beginning of the Declaration of Independence: the purpose of government is to protect the life and liberty and pursuit of happiness of American people, and if government doesn't do that, if the government covers things up, if the government kills people ... that undermines what Jefferson talked about as being the very foundation of government." ..... He said U.S. Attorney Edward Dowd of St. Louis will be his deputy, describing Dowd as "a person who is very highly regarded in our community, a very respected prosecutor." ...... "

 

AP Wire 9/10/99 Michelle Mittelstadt "...Here, in question-and-answer form, is a look at some of the basic issues: ....Q: Cover-up or bureaucratic slip-up? A: That's THE question for several congressional committees that are investigating the FBI's belated about-face, and for Danforth. ``My job is to answer the dark question or the dark questions: Was there a cover-up? That's a dark question. Did the government kill people? ... How did the fire start?'' Danforth said. The Senate Judiciary Committee and the House Government Reform Committee also are investigating, in preparation for fall hearings. Q: What roles did Reno and FBI Director Louis Freeh play?

A: The standoff was already under way when Reno took office, and she had been on the job less than five weeks when she approved the FBI's proposal to use tear gas to flush out the Davidians and break the siege. Reno, who has said she made clear to the FBI her concern that nothing be used that could ignite a fire, is coming under increasing attack on Capitol Hill. Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott on Wednesday became the highest-ranking congressional leader to call for her resignation over the escalating controversy. Freeh, who didn't take the helm of the FBI until four months after the standoff ended, has escaped much of the criticism. ....Q: What types of tear gas were used?

A: Two types of non-incendiary tear gas and the newly revealed military pyrotechnic rounds. The non-incendiary liquid tear gas was inserted in one of two ways: Either by Combat Engineering Vehicles that used their booms to punch holes into the compound's walls to insert the gas; or by Bradley Fighting Vehicles that fired non-combustible ``Ferret'' rounds that shattered on impact. The military M651 canisters, which burn for about 30 seconds to heat and release the solidified tear gas inside, were fired from a Bradley Fighting Vehicle...."

 

NewsMax.com 9/10/99 Carl Limbacher "...Judicial Watch, the Washington-based public-interest law firm, isn't particularly thrilled with reports that Attorney General Janet Reno will tap former Missouri Sen. John Danforth to lead a new probe into the 1993 Waco massacre. In a press release issued on Wednesday, Judicial Watch Chairman Larry Klayman called Danforth "just another 'Washington club' politician who will likely compromise justice." "It's time for the American people to get real," Klayman advised. "Over the last six and one half years, we have seen what is effectively a giant cover-up of 'bi-partisan scandals' by the Washington establishment." .....And will the Waco information spigot suddenly dry up as the Justice Department takes steps to ensure that Danforth has exclusive jurisdiction over the treasure trove of evidence now in the hands of the Texas Rangers? How soon will it be before the appointment of the "trusted" ex-senator becomes an excuse for the press to lose interest? Be patient, we'll be advised -- if there's anything wrong with Waco, Jack Danforth will uncover it. Meanwhile, look for reporters to begin urging that it's time to move on. For now, the mainstream press seems chiefly concerned that folks they've long derided as "conspiracy nuts" not be vindicated by whatever evidence emerges from Waco. After all, if those "right-wing lunatics" were right about Waco, what about Filegate, Travelgate and Chinagate -- not to mention the mysterious deaths of Vince Foster, Ron Brown and dozens of other lesser players in the Clinton scandal tableau? America's mainstream journalists would rather be burned at the stake than admit that their critics were right to suspect they went into the tank on most of the above....."

http://www.nypostonline.com/editorial/13836.htm 9/10/99 Editorial "...But the fact is, the country can "survive bad judgment" even if the "government killed people" in a good-faith, albeit misguided, effort to enforce the law.

It's easy, six years after the fact, to forget that the Davidian compound was both an armed camp and an affront to the rule oflaw. It was absolutely necessary to end the siege - maybe not on that day, with winds gusting to 40-plus mph, but sooner or later. There are never any guarantees in such circumstances. Maybe tragedy was inevitable. Maybe not. What's intolerable, however, was the failure of the government to conduct a full, open and honest post-mortem of the Waco tragedy. It is beyond belief that more than six years later, the nation learns that evidence has been withheld - that, indeed, the armed forces may have been involved in the siege in contravention of the law. All on Janet Reno's watch. ...."

 

 

Begin here

 

Time Daily [Time Magazine online] 9/9/99 Frank Pellegrini "....Trent Lott can jaw all he wants - Janet Reno is stayin' put. "This is certainly a very serious matter," says TIME Justice correspondent Elaine Shannon. "The FBI's inability to get its Waco story straight undermines faith in not only the FBI but the entire criminal justice system, and that's her responsibility." But Reno considers herself an honest victim of bad information, and she's not a believer in the captain taking the fall for the mistakes of her mates. "She absolutely won't resign unless she's found to have lied," says Shannon, and Clinton, still mired after all these years of scandal in an I'm-not-Nixon impotence, doesn't have the political credibility to fire her. ..."

Associated Press 9/10/99 "....U.S. marshals delayed carrying out a judge's sealed order to seize more evidence from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms stemming from the Branch Davidian standoff, The Dallas Morning News reported today. The marshals carried out the order after U.S. District Judge Walter Smith issued a second edict Thursday that they comply with his initial order immediately, the newspaper said, citing unidentified sources. An ATF spokesman in Washington confirmed that Smith issued the order after hearing that the agency was considering closing their Waco office. He said the judge wanted the office's contents to be preserved.

``There was, I guess on his part, some concern that the office might be closing,'' said Jeff Roehm, public affairs chief at the agency's headquarters. ``It was pretty much expected.'' According to the News, the chief U.S. marshal for the district spent hours debating whether to execute the order, first consulting with his agency's headquarters in Washington and the U.S. attorney's office in San Antonio...... "

 

Daily Oklahoman 9/10/99 John Parker "...A second retired FBI agent said Thursday that he overheard Attorney General Janet Reno say Americans didn't want to hear anything more about Waco only a year after the fiery disaster.

And as Reno appointed an independent investigator Thursday to re-examine the 6-year-old debacle, Oklahoma U.S. Sen. Don Nickles urged her to resign because she has lost credibility. Errol Myers, a former supervisor of the FBI's drug and organized crime squad in Oklahoma, said he was present in 1994 when former agent Bob Ricks told Reno that he was frustrated by a gag order on the Mount Carmel standoff near Waco. "I don't remember exactly what her words were, but something to the effect she felt that people had heard all they want to hear -- something like they were tired of hearing about it," the Edmond resident said. Last week, Reno denied Ricks' account of remarks she made in April 1994 when she visited the Oklahoma FBI headquarters, then atop the 50 Penn Place tower. Contacted Thursday, Justice Department officials said they had nothing more to say about the conversation.

"Really, we can't keep track of every alleged statement," spokeswoman Kara Peterman said. "What the attorney general has said is, she thinks the American people will never forget Waco." ....."

 

LA Times 9/10/99 "....This won't be a quick process. Danforth says he hopes to complete his investigation by the presidential election in November 2000. But since it's uncertain where the inquiry might lead, there's no certainty when it might end..... Parallel investigations, especially those where the prospect of political advantage beckons, don't always serve the best interests of justice. Danforth has the authority to subpoena, to use a federal grand jury, to seek indictments. Congress has no tools more powerful than these, and a single investigation, led by the special counsel, is the preferable course. ...."

http://www.dallasmorningnews.com/editorial/0910edit1waco.htm 9/10/99 "....The need for a serious investigation into the actions of federal law enforcement agencies in the siege of the Branch Davidians is obvious. But Attorney General Janet Reno's appointment of former Sen. John Danforth, R-Mo., to head an independent probe should not override the need for congressional oversight hearings. Mr. Danforth is indeed a rock solid choice. He has served his state as attorney general, as well as a legislator. Widely admired for his probity, Mr. Danforth is surely among the more acceptable choices on both sides of the aisle. Yet Mr. Danforth is not the only issue here. Since the independent counsel statute expired in June, it must be asked just how much independence he will have in his independent probe. Ms. Reno can still influence the scope, duration, resources and prosecutorial consequences of the investigation. That is not altogether reassuring. ..... True, there is no evidence that Ms. Reno knowingly misled Congress and the American people when she repeatedly denied the use of pyrotechnic devices at Mount Carmel. Yet Mr. Clinton's exculpation of her before an independent probe has even begun is curious at best. Why not subject Ms. Reno and her department to the same procedural scrutiny that the president now reserves for FBI Director Louis Freeh? Congress has a very important role to play in investigating the Waco incident. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Henry Hyde, R-Ill., showed admirable restraint Wednesday when he said his committee would defer to the Danforth investigation. But that does not imply the Senate Judiciary Committee should do likewise. Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., correctly claims that oversight hearings by that committee, which Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, chairs, would provide some needed checks and balances. Sadly, Ms. Reno's actions relating to investigations into campaign finance issues have eroded her own reputation for objectivity and independence...."

 

http://www.sunspot.net/cgi-bin/editorial/story.cgi?section=news&storyid=1150140222417 9/10/99 Jonathan Weisman "... "What we're going to be looking at is whether there were bad acts, not whether there was bad judgment," said Danforth, a former Republican senator and Missouri attorney general who is an ordained Episcopal priest. "Our country can survive bad judgment. But the thing that really undermines the integrity of government is whether there were bad acts, whether there was a cover-up and whether the government killed people." Republican leaders on Capitol Hill vowed yesterday to launch a far more expansive investigation that would revisit all of the events and decisions that led to the final disaster. Republican investigators who led the last Waco hearings had warned the leaders that such an approach could ensnare the issue in partisanship and prevent lawmakers from discovering critical truths that two previous inquiries had failed to uncover. But Republican leaders rejected such counsel, saying new revelations had discredited the previous testimony of FBI agents and Justice Department officials..... "I want to know it all," said House Majority Leader Dick Armey of Texas. After speaking with three committee chairmen about a new Senate Waco inquiry, Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott said: "I would hope that they would do it in the broadest possible way." ....... Aides from both parties predicted that Congress' start-from-scratch approach would heighten the perception that the conclusions of Danforth's investigation will be the most widely accepted. Danforth said the Justice Department had given him the independence and power that he requested, including subpoena powers and the authority to convene a grand jury. He could also question Reno and FBI Director Louis J. Freeh under oath. Reno, who said she would "obviously" be a witness, recused herself from any supervisory role, leaving that job to Deputy Attorney General Eric Holder. To add a note of bipartisanship, Danforth named a lifelong Democrat, Edward Dowd, to be his deputy special counsel....... "As a friend of mine said, this is not what you call a good career move," Danforth joked. But what is at stake, Danforth said, is nothing less than the Declaration of Independence's pledge to protect the life, liberty and pursuit of happiness of the American people. "If government doesn't do that, if government covers things up, if government kills people, if that's what happened -- and I don't prejudge that -- then that undermined what Jefferson talked about as being the very foundation of government," Danforth said....... "

New York Magazine 9/13/99 Michael Tomasky "...So the tent was folded up, for the time being. Meanwhile -- here's where Freeh enters the picture -- survivalism was alive on another front: Later in 1995, there were congressional hearings on Ruby Ridge, the 1992 Idaho standoff during which an FBI sniper shot the unarmed Vicki Weaver, wife of Randy. The man in charge of that disaster was Larry Potts. Freeh, in 1995, disciplined Potts. But shortly thereafter, Freeh turned around and made Potts his No. 2 -- made Potts's promotion a throw-down issue, in fact. New documents, unearthed after Potts's elevation, that stank of cover-ups forced Freeh to rescind the promotion. The point? Freeh, in 1995, was finding himself in a position FBI directors are never in -- on the outs with congressional Republicans, who normally worship the bureau. It took him two years to overcome it, but boy, did he ever. When he dissented from Reno's decision in December 1997 not to appoint an independent counsel to look into Bill Clinton's and Al Gore's fund-raising calls, matters were restored to their normal order..... This is not to suggest that Freeh has been some Republican mole in the Clinton administration. By most accounts, even those of my Democratic sources above, he's been a generally good or even excellent FBI director and worked to defeat the reactionary cronyism for which the bureau is well known. But it is to suggest that maybe some of his decisions haven't been entirely apolitical, either. Or, to put it another way, that he understands his history: that attorneys general, and even presidents, can't do a thing to FBI directors, and that congressional Republicans, who share the bureau's longstanding distaste for pinkos and other crybabies, are the ones who have always buttered his agency's bread........."

http://etherzone.com/ 9/10/99 Hal Trammell "....Excuse me, sir, but do you remember me? I am Janet Reno, and I have done things that I should be ashamed of. The things that I did were not sins of malice, but sins of weakness. Like, I allowed the massacre of babies and mommies in Waco. I turned a blind eye to the OKC bombings. I lied about child abuse in Florida. I feigned dumbness about the FBI. I even obstructed so many investigations that I can't recall them all. But Bill, I did it all for you, because you are the boss. Like I said, they were not sins of malice, but of weakness. I mean no harm, but I realize even though you're not always right, you're always the boss. So, in a very big act of mercy, would you please, uh, Pardon me Bill?...."

Knight Ridder wire 9/5/99 Sidney Zion "...Janet Reno and Louis Freeh agree the FBI did not set the fire that destroyed 80 Branch Davidians near Waco, Texas, in 1993. Keep this in mind when you read about the internecine warfare between Attorney General Reno and FBI Director Freeh-and between Republicans and Democrats-in what has become the hottest partisan issue since the impeachment of President Clinton over Monica Lewinsky. Because, if Reno and Freeh are right-and the Republicans have been unable all these years to shake the bottom line that the Davidians killed themselves-then we are talking much ado about nothing....... Combined with Clinton's defense of Reno and his statement that Freeh would be under an "independent investigation," the deal surely looks like a move to turn Freeh into a fall guy. And that may be what Clinton intends. Freeh has been driving him crazy; he's the man who called for an independent counsel on campaign financing in the Chinese money game. The Wall Street Journal called Freeh "Reno's Most Wanted" in a recent editorial that demanded Reno's resignation and joked that Freeh's mug shot be posted in the post office. But against all this, Freeh is sanguine. What I tell you now I have from sources close to Freeh. They tell me he's not worried about the FBI on Waco. He thinks his agents will come out all right, that they didn't deliberately cover up the bombs that didn't shoot straight. But if his agents lied, he'll have their heads, because the FBI cannot permit lies, whether or not they have caused deaths. And Reno did not confiscate the FBI tapes. They were discovered and freely delivered to the Justice Department. I believe all this until somebody proves that people died because the FBI fired up that building near Waco...."

 

Washington Weekly 9/13/99 Marvin Lee "....I guess it is just one of those little coincidences we have grown accustomed to during the Clinton Era. The medical examiner in whose office someone accidentally "pulled the plug" on the cooling in the room where the bodies of the Branch Davidians were being kept -- causing their bodies to liquefy and preventing any subsequent autopsy -- is the same medical examiner who performed the autopsy of Whitewater witness Jim McDougal after his death in federal prison last year. The Washington Weekly had difficulty obtaining the McDougal autopsy report from Chief Medical Examiner Nizam Peerwani's office at the time. At first we were told such reports take "four to six weeks" to complete..... The office did, in fact, not complete or release the McDougal autopsy report until June 22, 1998, three and one half months after the death of McDougal. The report cleared federal officials of charges by other inmates of wrongdoing in the death, and attributed it instead to "hypertensive atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease."

Washington Weekly 9/13/99 Marvin Lee "....Another coincidence is that one of the chief planners of the February 28, 1993 BATF raid on the Branch Davidians was Bill Clinton's personal friend William Buford. As Special Agent in Charge of Little Rock BATF, Buford was also responsible for Mena Airport, where he failed to investigate charges of gun running. When one of his employees asked Buford to authorize an investigation of Mena, Buford said that he would authorize the investigation, but warned him that several "BATF agents had lost their jobs" as a result of Mena Airport, according to former police officer Russell Welch of Mena...."

The Dallas Morning News 9/11/99 Lee Hancock David Jackson "....Some Justice Department officials involved in the Branch Davidian case knew within months after the 1993 tragedy that FBI agents had used military tear gas rounds against the sect, documents submitted to Congress this week indicate. The documents also indicate that FBI agents involved in the final tear gas assault on the Branch Davidian compound freely discussed firing several military CS tear gas devices when questioned by Justice Department lawyers. But not until 1996 did any of the disclosed FBI or Justice Department documents include the acknowledgment that the military rounds were capable of sparking fires. None of the documents submitted to the Senate Judiciary Committee indicate that Attorney General Janet Reno or FBI Director Louis Freeh were told that the devices were used despite Ms. Reno's explicit ban on any pyrotechnic devices in the April 19, 1993, assault....."

The Dallas Morning News 9/11/99 Lee Hancock David Jackson "..."They either didn't understand the significance or were focused on what happened in the compound." Some of the documents, including handwritten and typed notes from civil lawyers and prosecution paralegals, were handed over to Congress in 1995 for an extensive House investigation of the Branch Davidian tragedy. Others were inexplicably withheld from congressional critics, even after they were turned over the previous year to lawyers representing the Branch Davidians in a wrongful death lawsuit....."

The Dallas Morning News 9/11/99 Lee Hancock David Jackson "...One document, an FBI laboratory report detailing significant evidence collected for the Branch Davidian criminal investigation, was given to Congress in 1995 without the key page that described the identification of two military gas projectiles and a single military gas shell casing, the records say..... The page of the FBI lab report describing the military CS devices was not found in the files of federal prosecutors who handled the 1994 criminal trial arising from the tragedy. But it was turned over by the government that same year to the lawyers representing the Branch Davidians in the lawsuit against the government, the Justice Department indicate....."

The Dallas Morning News 9/11/99 Lee Hancock David Jackson "..."I [Michael Caddel, representing sect members in the lawsuit] never looked at it. I don't know that any of my folks did. A military round would not have meant anything to me at the time," he said. "Most of us, unless we were munitions experts, would not have known that all military CS gas rounds are pyrotechnic in nature. "For the government, they had munitions experts," Mr. Caddell said. "The people that did this report knew that it was a pyrotechnic device and whoever prepared that report had to know that they had found a pyrotechnic device in the rubble when there wasn't supposed to be one."...."

The Dallas Morning News 9/11/99 Lee Hancock David Jackson "...Reached at his home Friday in Scottsdale, Ariz., Mr. Rogers, now retired, said he would not discuss the Waco matter. He said he planned to state his case for Mr. Danforth and Congress. "I want the truth to come out, because when it does, the American public is going to understand what happened," he said. "But this isn't the time to set the record straight." Documents turned over to Congress this week include notes of an interview that Mr. Rogers gave to Justice Department lawyers defending the wrongful death suit. They make no mention of his consulting with superiors before allowing the rounds to be fired at the bunker ....Another set of lawyers' notes, submitted to Congress for its 1995 hearings, detail interviews in which unnamed hostage rescue team members mentioned "one military gas round."

The Dallas Morning News 9/11/99 Lee Hancock David Jackson "...The lawyers' notes turned over to Congress indicate that Mr. Rogers defended another action that was later questioned by some FBI officials in Washington - his decision to order tanks to drive deep into the Davidian compound to inject gas. The fire that consumed the compound erupted shortly after an FBI tank drove through the building's front doors, and some critics have theorized that the Branch Davidians may have started the blaze in a panicked attempt to ward off the federal intruders....Notes from a Justice Department lawyer's interview with the hostage rescue team commander indicate that he believed that action was in line with the plan approved by Ms. Reno and was OK'd by Jeffrey Jamar, the FBI agent overseeing the bureau's actions in Waco. "Don't know if JJ passed to CIOC [the FBI's crisis command center in Washington]," the notes stated. "JJ: no reservation about authority to make this decision." ..."

The Dallas Morning News 9/11/99 Lee Hancock David Jackson "...Some of the documents submitted to Congress are e-mails in which the prosecutor, Bill Johnston, tried to warn his boss and others that an inquiry by the Texas Rangers was uncovering evidence that pyrotechnic tear gas had been used in Waco.......In a series of early August e-mails to U.S. Attorney Bill Blagg, Mr. Johnston sent increasingly specific warnings that the Rangers had evidence of pyrotechnic gas being used. Mr. Blagg has said he passed each of the messages to superiors at the Justice Department...... On Aug. 26, after Justice Department officials denied news reports of pyrotechnics being used, Mr. Johnston wrote the agency's chief spokesman to complain that his warnings had gone unheeded. "There should be no real surprise," Mr. Johnston wrote. "A couple of weeks ago, I faxed the specifications on the [pyrotechnic] M-651 round to Mr. Blagg. . . . The Department has not asked me nor the Rangers for information."..."

The Dallas Morning News 9/11/99 David Jackson "...John Danforth said Friday that he will rely on experience in staffing his investigation of the Branch Davidian fire - as long as the experience wasn't gained with the Justice Department or the FBI...... As for investigators, Mr. Danforth said he will consider government experience, but not from the FBI or the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms....."If they leak, they're gone," he said......Mr. Danforth said he will stop talking to the media after he appears on five television news programs Sunday. ...... The office has already started collecting documents and should be fully operational by next week. ...."It takes awhile to get them fully on board, but we are moving ahead." Mr. Danforth and Mr. Dowd said the investigation will be based in their hometown of St. Louis, but there also may be offices in Washington and Texas......"

Ft Worth Star-Telegram 9/11/99 Jack Douglas Jr. Karen Brooks "...Lawyers in a wrongful-death suit against the federal government said yesterday that they have been unable to fully explore the deaths of about 80 Branch Davidians in 1993 because many of their bodies liquefied when a cooler failed at the Tarrant County morgue .....The cooler failed weeks after Medical Examiner Nizam Peerwani had performed autopsies on members of the religious sect, including spiritual leader David Koresh. ......Chris Gavras, Peerwani's spokesman said yesterday afternoon that there may be some mitigating factors concerning reports that the morgue's cooler failed, but he declined to elaborate.......Peerwani did not return telephone calls to his office. His secretary, Linda Anderson, said he "has been advised not to make any further comments" in the wake of Thursday's appointment of a special counsel to investigate what happened at Mount Carmel on the last day of the siege......"

Ft Worth Star-Telegram 9/11/99 Jack Douglas Jr. Karen Brooks "... If the cooler malfunctioned, Putthoff said, it would not have mattered because all of the autopsies had been completed and the forensic evidence collected. But the lawyers suing the government say that when the badly burned corpses were liquefied from exposure to high temperatures, it prevented a second, independent examination to learn more about what--and possibly who--caused the Davidians' deaths. Kirk Lyons, who is representing three Davidian survivors of the fire and relatives of 23 dead sect members, said he has been told "somebody accidentally pulled the plug, and the bodies turned to soup." "It just destroys any chance for anybody to come back and challenge what the government said happened," said Lyons of Black Mountain, N.C. Petty said he believes that "approximately 40 to 50" unclaimed Davidian bodies were in the cooler when it failed. The cooler, which is behind the morgue and is still being used, was given to the Tarrant County Medical Examiner's Office by the federal government to hold the bodies of the sect members, Petty said...."

Ft Worth Star-Telegram 9/11/99 Jack Douglas Jr. Karen Brooks "...Peerwani told CNN in an interview this week that his office was not asked by the government to determine whether any of the Davidians were killed by federal agents. "I don't think that was an issue at the time," he said. Peerwani also said he was not asked by the government to determine the manner of the deaths--homicide, suicide or accidental--which is usually a routine procedure in autopsies. "In this particular case, we were primarily focused on deciding the cause of death. We had no control over the information that was surrounding this compound's tragedy," the medical examiner told CNN...."

Ft Worth Star-Telegram 9/11/99 Jack Douglas Jr. Karen Brooks "...Putthoff said the fiery end to the 51-day standoff between the religious sect and federal agents was an "extremely complex disaster." "I think the hardest part for the pathologists . .was separating out and seeing the bodies of the children were co-mingled with the adult female bodies," Puthoff said. Putthoff said that most, if not all, of the Davidian bodies were terribly burned and damaged by the fire and shrapnel from explosions, making it extremely difficult for the team of pathologists at Tarrant County morgue to examine them......Houston lawyer Michael Caddell, who is representing the relatives of 55 dead Davidians, said the survivors wanted a re-examination because "we think the autopsies were by and large not done in the best manner possible." ..."

Ft Worth Star-Telegram 9/11/99 Jack Douglas Jr. Karen Brooks "...Despite the damage done because of the cooler failure, authorities may still be able to learn more about the deaths of the Davidians by studying their bones, said Mary Manhein, professor of forensic pathology at Louisiana State University and deputy coroner of Baton Rouge Parish. Bone marrow can harbor DNA samples for as long as 10 years and a study of the bones can often solve the mysteries of a violent death, Manhein said. But a better preserved body, including the existence of lung tissue and blood samples, could help determine whether any of the Davidians died from smoke inhalation or from poison caused by government tear gas, said Jay Siegel, professor of criminal justice and chemistry at Michigan State University. "If they didn't find that out on the initial autopsy . .it would be much more crucial to have something preserved," said Siegel, a member of the American Academy of Forensic Science. ....."

Ft Worth Star-Telegram 9/11/99 Jack Douglas Jr. Karen Brooks "...Plaintiffs attorneys also have questions about the findings of Dr. Ronald Graser, the private pathologist hired by Riddle's family. Graser's examination found that body parts disappeared from Riddle, whose remains were kept at Tarrant County Mortician Service, a private mortuary in southeast Fort Worth, court documents say. During that time, the body of Riddle, who had been killed by a shot in the head, was kept in a "crash bag" and sealed in a metal container in a cooler, said Tom Ramsey, owner of the mortuary. But when Graser examined the remains, he said part of the skull was missing, including the section where the bullet entered and exited, the court documents say....."

http://www.elkodaily.com/Article_detail_display.cfm?ID=4197&Articletypeid=8 9/9/99 Paul Craig Roberts "...Reno says she is very upset that the FBI used her. She wants her credibility back and has ordered a new investigation to "get to the bottom" of why the FBI lied to her and the nation about the use of incendiary devices. The new investigation won't get to the bottom of anything. It is merely the latest phase of a continuing cover-up. The issue is not why flammable devices were fired at the Davidians, but why the Davidians were illegally attacked with deadly force, first by an army of ATF agents firing automatic weapons and then by the FBI with tanks, poison gas and pyrotechnic devices..........The Davidians were not doing anything to anyone. They were peacefully practicing their religion. Everyone in the compound was there voluntarily. ..... The only whistleblowers were an independent documentary producer, a handful of columnists and the chairman of the Texas Rangers. Why? It is frightening that the federal government can organize the destruction of 86 people and their property and no one is held accountable. "Trust us," the ATF agent told Congress during the hearings in Waco's aftermath. "Congress has to trust law enforcement." ...... "

http://companies.newspage.com/item.cfm/c0911115.901?heads=yes 9/11/99 Reuters "....The newspaper [Dallas Morning News] said the documents it was able to view included notes by Justice Department lawyers on interviews with FBI agents after the siege, as well as an FBI laboratory report detailing significant evidence collected at the site. ``The documents also indicate that FBI agents involved in the final tear gas assault on the Branch Davidian compound freely discussed firing several military CS tear gas devices when questioned by Justice Department lawyers,'' the newspaper wrote...... ``The line attorneys here didn't understand the significance of that phrase,'' one official said. Lawyers for Branch Davidian survivors suing the government over the siege were given the same documents by the Justice Department, but also did not recognize the significance of ''military gas rounds,'' the newspaper said....."

NewsMax.com 9/10/99 ".... Inside Cover has learned that Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, Texas, was warned by federal agents on the scene in Waco to prepare for trauma victims at least six hours before a fiery inferno consumed the Branch Davidian compound on April 19, 1993. Contemporaneous reports reviewed by Inside Cover and interviews this week with hospital staff indicate that the FBI expected their assault on Mt. Carmel to result in heavy casualties among church members. But despite the anticipated carnage the attack was executed as planned, raising serious questions about the motives behind the ill-fated decision to act. A news report broadcast on local Dallas television as the Mt. Carmel church fire raged out of control revealed that Parkland Hospital staff had been called by the FBI just after 6:00AM that day, more than six hours before fire erupted inside the compound. The report featured a live interview with Parkland's then-Director of Emergency Services Jorie Kline by Channel 4's Cynthia Gau, a little more than an hour after the fire erupted. A tape recording of their exchange obtained by Inside Cover late on Friday shows that Parkland Memorial had been placed on full alert status:

UNIDENTIFIED ANCHOR: You bring up a good point here that 25 to 30 people may have survived. Let's go live now to Parkland Hospital, where Cynthia Gau is standing by with more on the medical aspect. Cynthia, what can you tell us in that respect?

GAU: We are in one of the largest and best burn centers in the state of Texas. And standing with me right now is Jorie Kline. And she is a nurse administrator here and she was put on alert; the whole hospital was put on alert, at 6:11 this morning. Now, what's going to be happening here?

KLINE: Well, everyone is on alert because of the potential situation in Waco and everybody's prepared to take care of any patients that are flown to us from the Waco area.

GAU: How many doctors will be available?

KLINE: Well, from the general surgery service we can pool our resouces of approximately 50 surgeons. And then we also have our emergency medicine program as well as internal medicine in case there are any smoke inhalation victims.

GAU: When we spoke earlier you said that perhaps there might not be a possibility that all patients could be taken care of here. Is that true?

KLINE: Well, obviously we -- our burn unit is almost at its capacity level. I understand that we can take four to five victims of this situation. And the burn physicians, Dr. Perdue and Dr. Hahn, who are recognized worldwide, as well as Cam Walker, the head nurse, are up there evaluating the patients and deciding how many patients we can take and how many we'll have to decide if they need to go to other facilites.

On Tuesday Parkland spokesperson April Foran told Inside Cover that its burn unit ultimately treated three Waco victims.

The 6:11AM heads-up to Parkland staff came only minutes after the FBI began it's tank and tear gas assault on the Branch Davidian compound. Less than a year after the raid, Parkland's director of legal affairs, Tom Cox, told the Washington Times that there had been at least two early morning calls from the FBI to the hospital that day. The same report noted that at 6:06AM, FBI microphones hidden inside the compound picked up comments the government said showed Davidians were preparing to torch the compound. Five minutes later, according to Director Kline, the FBI called Parkland.

....Video shot minutes after flames and smoke began to belch from the compound's windows shows a U.S. military tank continuing to ram the wooden structure. Parkland lawyer Cox told the Washington Times that the FBI's early-morning heads-up warned that "there was a possibility of something occuring that day," but added that agents had called "several previous times" during the 51-day siege....

On Tuesday Harry Martin, editor of California's Napa Sentinel, told Inside Cover that he was informed the day before the FBI's Waco assault that three area hospitals, including Parkland Memorial, had been warned to set aside burn beds...."

FoxNews 9/10/99 David Schuster Freeper go star go reports "....David Shuster is reporting that Burton has looked at the film and says it is inconclusive on FBI or anyone else shooting at the Davidian compound on April 19, 1993...." Freeper shield adds "...Fox News just had a report that Dan Burton says that video does NOT exclusively show Davidians being shot by goverment. It also reported that FBI did not shoot the Branch Davidians. Burton also said has not been able to identify Delta Force members through Pentagon....."

http://www.foxnews.com/js_index.sml?content=/news/wires2/index.sml 9/10/99 Sherri Chunn "...The people of Waco have had to endure unending questions about the FBI assault on the Branch Davidian cult, wisecracks about the "wackos in Waco,'' and countless tourist requests for directions to the site of the tragedy. Julie Carlson says she becomes defensive when people describe Waco as a "hick town with all these nuts.'' And Penny Jacko, who works in public relations at Waco's Baylor University, says she and her husband no longer tell people they're from Waco when they travel....... Former Mayor Bob Sheehy says: "You can't change what happened. All you can do is offer help and information. Some of the media are going to write ugly things about you. They did us. But if you stay the course, they'll probably say some nice things about you before they leave.'' ....... Sheila Martin, the widow of a Branch Davidian and a plaintiff in the wrongful-death lawsuit, says the rehashing of the siege hurts. But the latest disclossures "have made it a lot better'' for the survivors. "People have been very nice. There's a genuine spirit of love. They saw us as people in pain who had lost family,'' Ms. Martin says. Branch Davidian Amo Bishop Roden, who spends most of her days distributing literature to tourists at the site of the former compound, is also glad to see the renewed interest in the case. "I've watched the government steal and lie for six years. I know they're hiding even more,'' she says....."

Fox News 9/10/99 John Soloman "....The first 48 pages of the lab report had been turned over to lawmakers years ago, absent the mention of the tear gas that government officials for years had denied using. The 49th page disclosed that FBI investigators who examined the scene at Waco found a "fired US military 40 mm shell casing which originally contained a CS gas round," and two "expended 40mm tear gas projections." The report is likely to become a key piece of evidence in the independent inquiry ordered by Attorney General Janet Reno and separate congressional investigations into whether government officials tried to cover up about the use of incendiary tear gas on the final day of the siege. The missing page of the report and the memo were obtained by AP...... The lab report does not specifically state whether the gas in the shells was incendiary or when they had been fired. But the potentially flammable M651 tear gas canisters that the FBI belatedly acknowledged using on the final day of the siege are 40mm military shells like those described in the lab report. ..... Also Friday, congressional aides sifted through documents subpoenaed from the Texas Rangers dealing with the fiery end of the 51-day siege. The documents were subpoenaed last week by the House Government Reform Committee and included a previously unreleased Rangers report on ordnance used by the FBI in the final hours of the siege, a congressional aide said. Texas Department of Public Safety spokesman Tom Vinger, whose agency oversees the Rangers, said the report represents "an extremely exhaustive look at some of the controversial evidence." "When you get right down to it, it is very narrow in focus," Vinger said. He declined to be more specific....."

DRUDGE 9/10/99 "....The coroner who examined the bodies of David Koresh and the 75 others who died at Mt. Carmel on April 19, 1993 is now saying he'd like to re-evaluate the 6 1/2 year old Branch Davidian case, Saturday's ATLANTA JOURNAL-COSTITIUTION is reporting. Tarrant County Medical Examiner Dr. Nizam Peerwani tells the CONSTITIUTION'S Tommy Witherspoon and Mark England that recent developments have caused him to doubt his original autopsies' goals and conclusions. "There is a feeling that one should go back and re-evaluate ... The focus at the time was not whether the FBI was doing the shooting," Peerwani told the paper. Peerwani's current focus is on the 23 Davidians who had gun shot wounds. While his office originally did some ballistics tests -- which were handed over to the FBI never to be seen again despite requests from Texas law enforcement -- Peerwani wants to know now whether bullets went through an "intermediary target, like a wall or door, before striking the people." "We have sufficient photographs and other materials for us to review these issues. I have not started this, but I would certainly do so if asked by the proper authorities." Peerwani is also saying he'd like to get his hands on a videotape his office made and gave to the Justice Department -- a tape that would establish exactly where each Branch Davidian member died at the Waco compound. "We were told that they had misplaced the tape," Peerwani tells the paper....."

Pacific News Service 9/8/99 Justin Raimondo "....The Daily Oklahoman newspaper quoted Bob Ricks, the FBI's spokesman in 1993, as saying to Janet Reno, "You probably don't realize it, but in the Midwest Waco is still an extremely big deal out here, and it's the subject of much conversation." Reno's reply, according to Ricks, "I don't think the American people care about Waco anymore." Reno's spokesman denies this, but Ricks' account is all too believable. Until new evidence surfaced, those who questioned the Davidians' fate were alleged to be "right-wing extremists" and "conspiracy theorists." Now, amid a growing public outcry, government officials are scrambling for cover, pointing at each other, and even raiding each other's offices for evidence. Even liberals are beginning to ask questions. Now does anyone think "the American people don't care about Waco"?...... The Waco massacre did not occur in a vacuum. The Brady bill signaled the beginning of an accelerated campaign to effectively repeal the Second Amendment, and the tactics of the BATF (Bureau of Alcohol Tax and Firearms) had already drawn plenty of vocal criticism -- far below establishment media radar, a melange of "constitutionalists," secessionists, tax protesters, and proto-libertarians emerged with no real national center. United around opposition to gun control, fear of federal encroachment, and contempt for the new Clinton Administration, this mass of discontent was galvanized by the events of April 19, 1993. They saw it as a murderous assault on harmless outsiders -- and they were right. They said that "investigations" by various government agencies were a cover-up -- and they were right. Now they say the latest investigation will come to nothing because powerful forces stand in the way....... One remark posted on Freerepublic.com, a popular conservative website, sums up the rightists' worst fears, asking: "Are we becoming some kind of banana republic?" For conservatives, who all see themselves as patriots, Waco is the end of innocence. Revolted by an administration that seems to embody moral corruption, they are ready to believe Clinton and his cabal are capable of anything -- as are millions of Americans far outside the ranks of the organized right. ........ The media accepted the government's story for six years. It took two crusading investigators, Mike McNulty, an independent film-maker, and David Hardy, an Arizona lawyer to uncover the truth. And that truth, says Rockwell, is that "Waco teaches us something important about the nature of government. It hates dissent, and it doesn't hesitate to kill its opponents." This realization is radicalizing not only conservatives, but also ordinary Americans, as the extent of the crime -- and the cover-up -- comes out....... "

Ft. Worth Star-Telegram 9/12/99 Jennifer Autrey "....The images of Bradley fighting vehicles punching holes in the wooden compound of the Branch Davidian sect and of helicopters hovering overhead as the structure burned have cecome etched in America's collective psyche. The extent and legality of the military involvement in the 51-day siege at the Mount Carmel compound near Waco six years ago is expected to be a focus of upcoming investigations into the fiery end of the siege on April 19,1993....... Texas law prohibits the use of the Texas National Guard in civilian law enforcement unless there is a clear drug connection. Alabama law says its National Gurad force has no authority outside state boundaries. National Guard personnel and equipment from both states were used at Mount Carmel. A congressional report has determined that those actions were taken without proper authority...... "

Ft. Worth Star-Telegram 9/12/99 Jennifer Autrey "....Recent revelations indicate that the Delta Force had a greater presence and a more active role in the final assault on the Branch Davidians than FBI officials have acknowledged. According to at least one account, the Delta Force was there not to advise, but to kill. Steven Barry, a retired Special Forces sergeant who sometimes trained members of the Delta Force, gave a sworn affidavit to plaintiffs' attorneys in a civil suit brought by families of dead Branch Davidians. The case is scheduled to go to trial in Waco Oct. 18th. Barry said another friend in the Delta Force told him that the unit's "B" Squadron had been ordered to "take down" Branch Davidians. Barry said he understood from his experience in the Special Forces that "take down" meant to kill people identified as terrorists. ..."

Ft. Worth Star-Telegram 9/12/99 Jennifer Autrey "....Former CIA officer Gene Cullen has said in several recent interviews that he learned through casual conversations with Delta Force members that 10 of the unit's commandos were present during the April 19, 1993 assault and may have participated. Similarly, James B. Francis, commissioner of the Texas Department of Public Safety said "it is clear" that members of the Delta Force were on the scene. Initial reports indicated that three members were present, but Francis said he is now being told that as many as 10 were there. "There is some evidence that might indicate that they were more than observers," Francis said. "It is fuzzy as to what their role was." Francis said law enforcement officials and civilians have provided first-and second-hand reports on Delta Force activities. He declined to elaborate further....."

Ft. Worth Star-Telegram 9/12/99 Jennifer Autrey "....Caddell said government attorneys were asked to answer questions in connection with the lawsuit. One of the questions asked for a list of all military personnel who were at Mount Carmel. Government officials listed Army medical personnel, the Texas National Guard and 10 others whose identity they said is classified information, Caddell said. Army Col. Bill Darley, a Defense Depaartment spokesman, said the Pentagon has stated that it had only three Special Operations personnel at Mount Carmel and he has seen nothing to refute that statement. Two soldiers were present during most of the siege to maintain high-tech equipment, he said. Another was there when the compound burned, but only as an observer, he said....."

Kansas City Star 9/12/99 Bill Tammeus "...In the midst of potentially incendiary tear gas canisters, bullets, roaring flames and government lies, it may be easy for the new Danforth investigation into what happened at Waco to miss a vital religious truth. For many reasons (almost none of them good) government agencies failed to understand that they were dealing there not with terrorists but with religious zealots. The error led them to launch a disastrous and deadly raid on the home of the Branch Davidians in February 1993 and led them to the even more devastating decision to use force in April 1993 to evict the men, women and children who faithfully followed David Koresh and his wildly apocalyptic theology. I have said this before (in a 1994 series of columns I wrote from Waco a year after the fatal fire) but it's time to say it again: The entire Branch Davidian catastrophe could have -- indeed, should have -- been avoided had government agencies spent even a few minutes understanding the religious beliefs of the Branch Davidians living at Mount Carmel. And that wasn't asking too much. The Branch Davidians, in fact, had been in Waco for decades. Religious scholars at nearby Baylor University could have helped government officials see that their approach was exactly the wrong one and would lead to calamity. ....If the Danforth investigation fails to grasp the religious nature of this story, it will have wasted its time. The government simply must be made to understand why what happened at Waco was an assault on religious liberty -- or it may blunder into a similar disaster in the future -- especially as more and more religious sects become overwrought with approaching millennium fever....."

Ft Worth Star-Telegram/AP 9/12/99 AP "....As an independent inquiry prepares to examine the government's role in the 1993 Branch Davidian standoff, Tarrant County Medical Examiner Nizam Peerwani says he would like to look again into the deaths of sect members who died of gunshot wounds. "There is a feeling that one should go back and re-evaluate," Peerwani said. "The focus at the time was not whether the FBI was doing the shooting." .....

Peerwani said he wants to re-examine the deaths of 23 Davidians who died of bullet wounds. It may be possible to determine whether they were shot by someone outside the compound building, he told the WACO TRIBUNE-HERALD. Did the bullets go through an "intermediary target, like a wall or door, before striking these people?" he asked. "We have sufficient photographs and other materials for us to review these issues. I have not started this, but I would certainly do so if asked by the proper authorities." ....... Justice of the Peace David Pareya, one of four McLennan County justices who ordered the autopsies, told the Waco newspaper he has lingering questions about some of the deaths. Pareya said he had to rule the cause of death for many Davidians as unknown because the FBI would not supply him with ballistics tests results. "The thing that always stayed in my mind was if they were afraid some of the ordnance or ballistics could be matched up with their weaponry," Pareya said....."

Ft Worth Star-Telegram Research 9/12/99 "....HAS ANYONE EVER BEEN PROSECUTED FOR VIOLATING THE POSSE COMITATUS ACT? After the 1973 American Indian uprising at Wounded Knee, S.D. four criminal cases raised challenges to the involvement of the Nebraska National Guard and Air Force personnel, who conducted aerial surveillance while the South Dakota National Guard maintained vehicles in the area of the siege. Two Army officers also served as consultants and advisers. The courts were divided on whether the Posse Comitatus Act had been violated in two of the cases. The courts found certain military activities at Wounded Knee illegal. But two other courts determined that as long as the military assistance was passive, it was legal...... IS THE NATIONAL GUARD RESTRICTED UNDER THE POSSE COMITATUS ACT? Not usually. Guard members are part of a state and national military force. Normally, they are members of the state guard, and their supreme commander is the governor. In that situation, the Posse Comitatus Act does not apply to them and they can participate actively in civilian law enforcement. However, the president has the power to federalize a National Guard unit in cases of national disaster or civilian disturbances. In these cases, the units commander in chief is the preseident and the Posse Comitatus Act applies. WERE THE ALABAMA NATIONAL GUARD AND TEXAS NATIONAL GUARD UNITS FEDERALIZED AT MOUNT CARMEL? No, so the Posse Comitatus Act would not have applied to them. However, Texas law requires that a "military force from another state, territory or district, except a force that is part of the United States armed forces, may not enter the state without the permission of the governor," National Guard personnel involved in post-raid investigations said that Ann Richards, then the governor of Texas, did not approve the use of the Alabama National Guard....."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....Was Bill Clinton planning the Waco raid even before he became president? Joseph Farah of WorldNetDaily suggests that he might well have been. In fact, he makes a case for this hypothesis and asserts that we will not be able to hold the guilty accountable "until the White House connections are fully explored." The central figure in this scenario is Bill Buford, the agent in charge of the Little Rock, Ark., branch of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, well known to be a friend of Bill (FOB) according to Farah's Arkansas sources. There is an affidavit on file with the federal court that depicts Buford hard at work on the Davidian case on New Year's Day 1993. It seems that he was attempting to track down rumors of sexual abuse at the Davidian compound. What was going on there? Since when does sexual abuse come under the jurisdiction of the federal government? What is the name of Buford's agency again? The Bureau of Alcohol, Sexual Abuse and Firearms? This requires explanation, but of course none will be forthcoming. ....."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....According to Farah, Buford is identified in official documents "as one of two 'senior raid planners,'" in the initial assault on the Branch Davidian compound at Waco. After he was shot in the ill-advised storming of the compound, carried out despite the knowledge of BATF supervisors that the element of surprise had been lost (the press tipped off the Davidians after the BATF tipped off the press), Buford was visited at the hospital by Roger Altman, a longtime FOB, recently appointed to the number two slot in the Treasury Department at the time. Keep in mind the timeline. The initial assault on the Davidian compound took place hardly a month after the inauguration, yet Altman, Webb Hubbell, Vince Foster and other Clinton administration biggies are said to have been intimately involved in planning the raid. That hardly seems possible unless they started planning before the inauguration....."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....Vince Foster's widow is reported to have said that he was all torn up about the outcome. It seems that he blamed himself for the deaths. Do tell. Does that mean that he didn't kill himself because of those mean, hurting editorials in the Wall Street Journal then?...... Or maybe the things Jerry Parks said to him in that phone conversation they were reported to have had regarding the information Parks was said to have been gathering on Bill at Hillary's behest? Farah points out that, "Foster, Hubbell, Altman and Buford were all in Little Rock leading up to the inauguration." ...."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....Farah asks: "What was the involvement in Waco planning of key Clinton White House officials even before they took power? Was the Waco raid, in fact, cooked up as a publicity and political stunt by an incoming administration itching for drama and action? Is it possible that Clinton and his cronies bear even more responsibility than any of us imagine for this deadly escapade?" ......The point is, politicians, like criminals tend to follow certain patterns in promoting their agenda, whether it be robbing banks, or catching votes. Such plans are not easy to devise, so when they come up with a good one they tend to stick with it, using it over and over again. Clinton seems to have hit upon a very basic plan that underlies all of the major disasters which have occurred on his watch. It goes something like this: 1. Single out a group of pariahs who can be easily demonized and are unlikely to be effectively defended by any influential group within the social order. 2. Demonize them to the limit of possibility. 3. Confront them with demands that they will find outrageous and totally unacceptable. 4. Attempt to enforce these demands with physical violence. 5. Be rebuffed in the initial attack and then settle down for the long haul. 6. Further demonize the target group. 7. Escalate the violence until the targeted group is overwhelmed...."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....I have read the report issued by the Child Protective Service Treatment Team Administrative Group that examined the surviving Davidian children. It was a masterpiece of ambiguity: "In summary, the picture that evolves from our work with the 21 children released from Ranch Apocalypse is clinically and 'legally' complex -- filled with grays rather than black and white...." I noticed however that conclusions of "abuse" were invariably couched in highly subjective, speculative terms, involving the personal opinion of the investigator as to how a child should be raised: "Conclusions: The style of discipline, atypical family re-structuring, need for allegiance and obedience of David, the punitive rather than socializing style of discipline, the isolation from, and intolerance of, any other competing ways of thinking led to a coercive, fearful, emotionally-restrictive environment for these children. If I were one of those white-coated, PC-pontificators I don't think I would be quite so eager to call attention to "intolerance of any other competing ways of thinking." Such swords are double-edged and painfully sharp given the scandalous state of intellectual dishonesty and repressive conformism in our institutions of higher "learning." I would also note that among the "competing ways of thinking" from which Davidian kids were "isolated" we might include the drug culture to which the children of these lab-coated lackeys are routinely exposed, and the brazen hawking of sex and violence by the same mass media that facilitated the slaughter of these innocent children by trumpeting the hate-filled, lying propaganda used to demonize the Davidians.

Despite all the pious double talk and circumlocution, in every instance, direct evidence of child abuse was lacking: "Again, these impressions (with no other evidence) as they now stand likely would not indicate emotional abuse to the degree that would precipitate state intervention without further investigation." That is bureaucratese for "we can't prove nuttin' on 'em now, but they're on our list." Having seen photographs of some of the dead children after the FBI's Hostage Rescue Team had completed its task of "protecting" them, I can only say that the mind boggles at the double standard used here to characterize child abuse....."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....Well then, what about firearms violations? Here again, widespread allegations of firearms violations were made in the mainstream press, yet the actual evidence is exceedingly vague and ambiguous. The feds have lied about so many aspects of the Waco holocaust, it is questionable whether their allegations would stand up in court. Not that the business of holding off a small army of well-armed milicops was such a terrific idea. I have been criticized by a few readers for suggesting that Koresh and his followers did not "have a right" to defy the authorities in this way. What I am suggesting is that had his head been screwed on the right way around, Koresh would have contested the matter in court instead of attempting to take on the combined might of the entire federal government in a gun battle. Although some may applaud this feat of derring-do in print, I haven't noticed too many who are prepared to emulate his example...."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....Of course the mere fact that Koresh and his followers were religious fundamentalists is profoundly offensive to the PC elite. These people are extremely intolerant of the beliefs of others and harbor some very ugly totalitarian tendencies which they are prone to let slip out whenever they blow their tops, which is to say, frequently. Although most such "elitists" seem absolutely certain that they know best how others should conduct their lives, their own private lives are quite often chaotic. The irony of this invariably seems to escape them. Besides, they are prepared to brook no interference with THEIR private lives. It is the lower orders whose lives must be meticulously regulated in accordance with the cannons of political correctness....."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....Gary Null noted in his article "The Holocaust at Waco," that appeared in the April 1995 Penthouse, that the government's confrontation with the Branch Davidians may have begun as a publicity stunt to convince a gullible public that our fearless, black-suited Ninja milicops are cracking down on weirdo cultists with "illegal" arms caches. "But then the publicity stunt got out of control," wrote Null.

Didn't it just? It sort of reminds one of the way the bombing of Serbia began. Milosevic was supposed to cave in after a few days of bombing, but the days stretched on into weeks and the weeks into months until we were reading items such as this in the foreign press: "They had been torn apart. Blood was caked around what was left of Vojislav Milic's cellar, and there was the smell of meat. In the morgue, they had been unable to fit together the pieces of his son and daughter-in-law and his two grandchildren. Nato's bomb - one of two which struck the homes of Surdulica - had scored a direct hit on the house, killing at least nine other children in the basement, the youngest only five years old." .... The above paragraph ran in the London-based Independent. American journalists lacked the moral courage, intellectual honesty and personnel integrity to write such stories. Or maybe they were just afraid of losing their jobs. Anyway, these stories were not allowed to run in the glorious American mainstream press. American journalists were kept busy re-writing government propaganda handouts...."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....Regarding point five of the game plan, why would anyone of sound mind arrange a confrontation that was so likely to result in a humiliating impasse? The BATF knew that the Davidians were armed to the teeth -- why did they walk into an ambush with their eyes open, knowing that the element of surprise had been lost. Well, a cynic might reply, they did make the evening news, didn't they? And what made U.S. policy wonks so certain that Milosevic would cave in after a few days? Surely there was no rational basis for such an assumption. And pursuing the point a bit further, weren't they taking quite a chance assuming that the targeted group would behave true to form? Supposing the Davidians had simply thrown up their hands and said "We give up?" Wouldn't the feds have looked a bit like Keystone cops?....... Presumably the authors of these horror stories were confident that their target groups would behave as expected. Did they also expect to be so rudely rebuffed? Probably not. After all, it was not only embarrassing, but politically damaging. That sort of thing hits a power-freak where he lives, squarely in his painfully bloated ego. All of which suggests that these decisions were not entirely rational. ....."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....As Edith Efron noted in her widely-quoted article that appeared in Reason magazine in November 1994: "Clinton is inordinately afraid of making mistakes. He is in so far over his head, over his capacity to do the work required for the presidency, that he exists in a state of terror. It apparently builds up in the night, and, according to Woodward, the next morning he vomits out the accumulated terror all over George Stephanopoulos in the form of uncontrolled explosions of rage. Clinton's eyes bulge, his face grows scarlet, he yells, he screams, he shrieks." Indeed. It's all there, the imperfectly suppressed hostility and rage, the deep-seated sense of inferiority, the explosive episodes. Remind you of anyone? A man with a toothbrush mustache, perhaps? He had a pretty rocky childhood as well. According to Adolf's sister, his father used to beat him daily. Who wouldn't? He was a thoroughly rotten kid. Efron continues: "While Clinton is quite capable of controlling this rage and conceals it from the public -- it has only been glimpsed by accident and briefly -- he does not control it in private. According to Meg Greenfield, he takes his rage out on vulnerable members of his family and on employees -- on those over whom he has power." Does he also take it out on Branch Davidians and Serbs? Is that why he keeps making those "mistakes"?.... And yet his close associates have given us the clues required to round out the picture of Clinton's true nature. George Stephanopoulos in his recent tell-all book quoted the leader of the Free World: "We're not inflicting pain on these [expletive deleted]; I believe in killing people who try to hurt you, and I can't believe we're being pushed around by these two-bit [expletive deleted]." He was talking about the Somalians, but surely one group of bad guys is as bad as another to a world leader with a world-class chip on his shoulder....."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....Clinton forced the Serbs to reject the Rambouillet agreement by making them an offer they couldn't possibly accept. The conclusion is inescapable -- he WANTED to bomb them. But surely my imagination is working overtime. Did I imagine this as well? "Hanging upside-down from the wreckage was a dead man, in his fifties perhaps, although a benevolent grey dust had covered his face. Not far away, also upside-down - his legs trapped between tons of concrete and steel - was a younger man in a pullover, face grey, blood dribbling from his head on to the rubble beneath." This description of the carnage at a bombed-out Belgrade TV studio is also from the Independent, which had a reporter at the scene. His Imperial Highness didn't like the spin Belgrade TV had been putting on the news. Say what you will about the significance of his temper tantrums, there is nothing at all imaginary about the consequences of Clinton's wrath....."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....But surely, say you, shaking your head in disbelief, the entire government would not allow itself to be led so far astray by a psychopath. Bitte? Was heisst fuehren? What do you mean "led?" The leader, in this case the president, assumes total responsibility for the outcome of the policy he dictates. His minions subordinate their will to that of the leader. It is the Fuehrer-prinzip. The subordinates assume no moral responsibility for the actions of the leader. They are only following orders. This is a form of psychological regression. I won't go into the gory details; it parallels the relationship between parent and child, chief and member of the tribe. .....Yes, I know -- Clinton didn't take responsibility for Waco. He left that to Janet Reno, which only makes him doubly disgusting. Nevertheless, I find Farah's thesis difficult to ignore. Based on the experience of Kosovo, Waco appears to have Clinton's signature on it....."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....How did the BATF happen to pick the Branch Davidians for special attention? According to Carol Moore of the "Committee for Waco Justice," the United Parcel Service tipped off the McLennan County Sheriff's Department in May of 1992 that "suspicious deliveries" were being made to the Davidians...... BATF Director Stephen Higgins told the House Judiciary Committee on April 28, 1993, that, "We had a review here at headquarters office in December with respect to whether we had probable cause. We decided at that point that we did not, and we continued to gather information. We brought people in from Australia; we got the undercover agent in; we interviewed any number of people." In other words, they had no evidence of firearms violations. Is that why they started looking into "sexual abuse"?..... The Committee for Waco Justice wrote a report on the incident in which they concluded that the federal agency had used excessive force and had violated the constitutional rights of the Davidians, driving them "to violent self-defense, resulting in the deaths of four agents and six Branch Davidians." The committee called upon Attorney General Reno to appoint an Independent Counsel "to identify and prosecute responsible agents and officials for official misconduct, violations of rights, and negligent homicide." ....... But another aspect of the matter has been allowed to drop down through the cracks by most of the mainstream media. The Branch Davidian organization was licensed to sell guns. This, in fact, was their largest source of income..... Nor did the BATF find any evidence that the firearms were purchased illegally. Although the Davidians bought guns, gun parts, black powder, inert grenades, and other equipment it was all purchased lawfully. None of it "established probable cause that Koresh had violated or was about to violate federal law," according to the committee. ...... And on the basis of this the federal government burns the place down, kills more than 80 people, two dozen of them children, and then lies about it to Congress and the American people for six years...."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....There is no question that the federal government is guilty of causing the Waco holocaust. The only point in dispute is the extent of the government's guilt. At present there would seem to be three possible levels of government involvement in this atrocity. 1. The government agents precipitated the confrontation, but the Davidians set the fire. 2. The government agents set the fire, but it was an accident. 3. The government agents deliberately set the fire, slaughtering the Davidians. ...."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr "..... If the Davidians caused the fire, the feds are off the hook, right? WRONG! The FBI itself described the standoff as a "hostage" situation. Their primary consideration should have been safeguarding the lives of the women, children and other innocent bystanders who had been caught up in the confrontation -- but it obviously was not. The FBI allowed its agents on the scene to become caught up in a frenzy of retribution against the Davidians.....The punitive nature of the final assault on the Davidians comes through loud and clear in the feds' use of CS gas on children for a period of more than six hours. They may be able to convince silly-villians that this is a "humanitarian" procedure, but I have been in the Army and have had a snootfull of that awful stuff on more than one occasion. It's one thing to use it on big, strong men out in the open where it dissipates in a minute or two. (Although I have seen big, strong men panic when heavily dosed with that stuff). But anyone who would use CS gas on children as young as one-year-old for six hours is a cowardly, sadistic, disgusting piece of Nazi filth who deserves to do hard time in a maximum-security prison. What it amounts to, in a word, is torture...."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....The second possibility is far more troubling. If the Davidians had drenched the place with accelerants as the FBI claims, why did the feds punch holes in the structure? To make sure that the fire would have a good draft? Why did they use pyrotechnic rounds? And why did they not allow the fire department anywhere near the structure? ..."

Washington Weekly 9/12/99 Edward Zehr ".....But the third possibility is absolutely soul-destroying. If the federal authorities deliberately set the fires, they are murderers, operating completely outside the law. Is that why they have lied to us for six years about using pyrotechnic rounds at Waco? Oh, but they only used two of them on a concrete bunker outside the main structure. (That is where the women and children were thought to be). Or so say the mainstream media spin-mongrels, ever eager to get in a quick lick at the government jackboot. ..... It has been suggested that federal agents may have been attempting to cover up the fact that they had fired on the compound, leaving a large number of holes in the roof. (McNulty's film is said to show footage of government agents firing into the Davidian compound from a helicopter). Is that why they were so quick to bulldoze the burned-out wreckage while our frenetic, see-no-evil media monkeys fell all over themselves in their anxious determination not to reason why? (Come to think of it, they did the same thing at Oklahoma City -- but that's another coverup)...."

http://www.accesswaco.com/auto/feed/news/local/1999/09/11/937096001.20832.1663.0148.html 9/11/99 Mark England Tommy Witherspoon Waco Tribune Herald "....FBI officials at the time said they believed the Davidian women would flee with their children in the face of a tear gas assault. It was just another in a line of government miscalculations. FBI officials were warned that the Branch Davidians might start a fire if the agency launched an assault and that their compound was a tinderbox, according to a former member and a visitor who sneaked into Mount Carmel during the siege. ..... Richard Schwein, former special agent in charge of the El Paso Division, said the FBI had a lot of concerns - not just the possibility of a fire starting at Mount Carmel.

"There was a concern they would burst out of the building shooting," said Schwein, a shift commander during the Davidian siege and now retired. "There was a concern they would use the children as shields. I know at one point they intended to come out wired with explosives and set them off to kill FBI agents. We had a lot of concerns. We tried to plan for every eventuality." Toward that end, the FBI contacted former Davidians all over the world, Schwein said. ...... Louis Alaniz, the Houston man who sneaked into Mount Carmel less than a month after the ATF's botched raid, wasn't really thinking about the place being a fire hazard when he talked to the FBI. He left the Davidians' residence on April 17, 1993 - two days before the fire that led to the death of Koresh and 75 followers. FBI and ATF agents - and even, Alaniz claims, the CIA - grilled him into the early morning hours after he left Mount Carmel. Alaniz left hoping to act as a mediator of sorts between the Davidians and the government.

"I asked for a pad and paper," said Alaniz, who now lives in Louisiana and works as a sheet metal drafter. "I drew a diagram of the building. I wanted to help resolve it. I gave them a complete layout. I told them, 'These people don't want to fight. But if you go in, do it in a way that you don't hurt anyone.'" He told authorities that hay was stacked against Mount Carmel's walls and lanterns were in some rooms, Alaniz said. "I told them there was hay up against the wall and in the foyer trying to stop bullets," Alaniz said. "They thought they were going to be shot at again."

A Texas law enforcement official, who asked not to be named, confirmed that Alaniz reported the Davidians were using hay as a barricade. Alaniz said he decided to sneak into Mount Carmel after hearing people talk about the Davidians while riding a bus in Houston. People were saying the government should kill all of them, he said. After praying, Alaniz took a Greyhound bus to Waco and somehow walked through an armed perimeter right up to the Davidians' front door. ..... "There was so much aggression going on that I knew they were fixing to do something," Alaniz said. "The government was cursing them, mooning them, shooting the finger at girls standing in the windows. I saw more evil on the outside than I did on the inside." Worried about the Davidian children, Alaniz said he told authorities that there was a nursery on the second floor where the infants slept. Lanterns were kept there, he reported, to give the mothers light while they bathed their children. ...... Alaniz said he was shocked to see a tear gas boom rip into the second floor on April 19, 1993. "Why did they have to hit that spot?" Alaniz asked. "That told me they didn't care. If they did, they wouldn't have pumped gas inside there where the infants were. No, sir, they can't lie to me no more about caring about those kids. They wanted them all dead." ..... "They were definitely worried about the possibility of a fire," Breault said. "So I'm surprised they had any incendiary devices there. They knew there was hay stacked up and lanterns about. If one of them was knocked over, it could have caused a fire. Then they went and started knocking things down. I think they just lost it." .....Government concerns about the possibility of a fire at Mount Carmel went back to early April 1993, according to the Justice Department's report on Waco. Assistant U.S. Attorney LeRoy Jahn raised the issue. Despite Jahn's concern and what people like Breault and Alaniz told them, the FBI balked at having firefighting equipment on standby at Mount Carmel. The FBI did not let firefighters approach the burning building until 31 minutes after the fire was first reported. Schwein still supports the FBI's decision not to have firefighters at the ready. "They would have had no protection whatsoever," Schwein said. "We couldn't move around except in Bradley Fighting Vehicles. Bullets were flying at our guys. We had put a plan together. We all know the results." ....."

Reuters 9/12/99 "....Texas officials said a new report on evidence collected at the Branch Davidian compound could not be made public because it contained military secrets, a newspaper reported yesterday...... The nature of the military secrets was not disclosed, but recent reports have indicated that military personnel were present at the siege and that classified technical gear may have been provided to the FBI...."

Macon Telegraph 9/11/99 Ron Woodgeard "....Attorney General Janet Reno was asked whether she would resign in light of the recent revelations about the disaster at Waco. "I don't run from controversy," she replied. The trouble is, she's not being asked to step aside because of controversy. She was being asked to resign because of incompetence. In this regard, there are no new questions to be answered. She was a poor choice for this job in the first place..... Ironically, Reno says her credibility is on the line. I find it incredible that anyone ever thought she had any credibility to lose. One did not have to be in law enforcement or a White House insider to see that she wasn't going to be able to handle the job. I suspected as I watched her being sworn in that she would become a patsy for the lifelong bureaucrats in the Justice Department and for the FBI. It may be good news that former Sen. John C. Danforth will lead the new investigation, but his decision not to look at events prior to the bungled raid in February 1993, is a disappointment. After the four ATF agents were killed, the standoff took on a completely different character. If they had left David Koresh and his band of misfits alone, no one would have been killed....."

http://www.abcnews.go.com/sections/us/HallsOfJustice/hallsofjustice.html ABCNews 9/10/99 Beverly Lumpkin ".... Last week I reported that some Justice folks were frustrated that no matter how many FBI faults, shortcomings or apparent lies turned up, all the criticism and calls for resignation were being directed at Janet Reno and not Louis Freeh. But I was chagrined to discover that apparently the partisan lines have been drawn so deeply that even to raise a question about Freeh puts one immovably on the Democratic side. Republicans blame Reno and praise Freeh. Democrats defend Reno and question Freeh. Many legal observers are appalled at the partisan divide that has been inserted into law enforcement. ...... The order governing former Missouri Sen. John Danforth's investigation into the Waco siege is a strange, gerry-rigged beast. Danforth will start out with an administrative probe but has the option to go criminal - i.e., impanel a grand jury and compel testimony. Danforth has made clear he hopes he will not have to go the grand jury route, because he wants to make as much public as soon as he can. Obviously grand jury secrecy rules would delay public release of information obtained through subpoenas....... Q. From Bruce Herrington: In what way is the president involved in an FBI investigation? To whom does the FBI report to during an investigation? Does the president ever direct the efforts of an FBI investigation? A. The FBI is technically part of the Justice Department; FBI Director Louis Freeh technically reports to Attorney General Janet Reno. FBI agents conducting an investigation report to Justice Department attorneys, usually U.S. attorneys in the various districts. Of course, we all know how often the FBI is the tail that wags the dog. In any administration the answer to your questions about White House influence would be "little to none." In the Clinton administration, with Reno and Freeh in charge of law enforcement, the answer is "absolutely positively none." In fact, Freeh refuses to go to the White House at all, even for ceremonial occasions. Not that the Clintons have invited him recently. Beverley Lumpkin covers the Justice Department for ..."

Cox News Service 9/10/99 Leah Quin Mike Ward ".... In an admission sure to fuel new questions about military involvement in the Branch Davidian siege, state officials revealed in an Austin courtroom Friday that parts of a Texas Rangers' report on evidence collected at the scene contain classified military secrets. Attorneys for the Texas Department of Public Safety said the report can't be made public yet because other agencies needed time to review it to see if any parts of it should remain confidential. The report, completed Thursday afternoon, consists of a 13-page narrative and about 200 pages of exhibits. The department sent copies to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Waco and to House Committee on Government Reform, which is investigating whether federal officials used incendiary devices during the 1993 siege on the Branch Davidian sect's compound near Waco. They also said the findings would be forwarded to former Missouri Sen. John Danforth, who is heading an independent inquiry into the Waco debacle at the request of U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno.

 

Cox News Service 9/10/99 Leah Quin Mike Ward "....The Rangers' final report had been completed Thursday. ``This will be a document the whole country will be interested in,'' DPS spokesman Mike Cox had said. By Friday afternoon, after the Statesman filed suit seeking to have the report immediately made public, the agency's stance had changed. Don Walker, who represented the Department of Public Safety, which prepared the report, said its legal staff and other agencies had not had time to determine if the report contained documents that might not be public, such as classified Army documents. The department needed the chance to retract certain information, if necessary, Walker said. The department would seek a state attorney general's opinion on whether to release deleted information, he said. In forwarding the Rangers' report on Thursday to the house committee, DPS Assistant Director Thomas A. Davis made no mention that it contained classified material. At the end, he noted that DPS planned to make public the report on Monday ``unless otherwise directed.''

 

Cox News Service 9/10/99 Leah Quin Mike Ward "....Judge Davis asked the state for a copy of the report, which he had requested earlier in the day. They gave him the 13-page narrative but said they hadn't brought the 200 pages of exhibits. Appearing irritated, Davis read the narrative in private. He then ordered the state to turn over the report to the American-Statesman, but postponed his own order until Saturday. State attorneys would then have time to seek a reversal of his order from the Third Court of Appeals in Austin, he said...... "

 

CNN Transcript - Burden of Proof 9/10/99 Transcript ".... VAN SUSTEREN: And, in our back row, Sue Lee (ph) and Chuck Burnham (ph). Stephen, let me go first to you. Could lives have been saved if we knew the truth about Waco? And, if so, why do you say that?

JONES: Yes, I believe the Murrah Building would not have been bombed if an independent investigation had been launched in 1993 after April 19th of that year. And the reason that I believe that is because the appearance of justice is as important as justice. In the Waco tragedy, there was evidence which suggested, certainly didn't prove, but which suggested that the government may have engaged in bad acts. The government can't investigate itself and whatever occurred was swept under the carpet, and when that occurs, history teaches us, that acts of vigilantism are rampant. And that's what occurred in Oklahoma City.

VAN SUSTEREN: Do you think, though, Stephen, that any investigation would have really deterred -- a complete and full investigation would have deterred anyone who wanted to commit such a detestable crime as blowing up a building with all of those citizens in it?

JONES: I believe it would have, yes.

COSSACK: Stephen, implicit in your statement is the fact that perhaps your client would, if there was an independent investigation like there is now, your client, he has been convicted, would have been deterred. But, in fact, do you really believe that the fact if Senator Danforth had conducted an investigation several years ago that that really would have had any deterrence on people who below there's a conspiracy? Don't you think it would be necessary for someone to be -- to conduct the investigation who is also a member of the extreme right wing or an extremist before anybody would believe him?

JONES: No, Roger, I think we are confusing two things here. Certainly people may have conspiracy theories. I don't pretend to believe those are going to end. That's not the question. The question is whether there would have been an act of terrorist activity in Oklahoma City, and I do not believe there would have been. Let's start with Senator Danforth. Senator Danforth is from Missouri, the "Show Me" state. He has an excellent reputation and a reputation that is well deserved. He's an Episcopal priest. He has been in the heat of battle. He was the sponsor for Clarence Thomas, when Mr. Thomas was nominated for the Supreme Court and he is a former prosecutor. He is a man well respected across the political spectrum, left or right, extreme left or extreme right, and I believe had he conducted an investigation then let the chips fall where they may, I don't think the Murrah Building would have been bombed. In fact, I'm confident of it.

COSSACK: Do you think that if Senator Danforth's investigation comes back and says, and concludes that, in fact, David Koresh set the fire, that there was no FBI involvement that caused that fire, do you believe that the people who are the extremists in this country will believe that investigation?

JONES: Well, Roger, I think that his findings would have to be broaden than that, and I think they will be broader than that. That's just one part of the Waco tragedy. So, no, I don't think, just limited to that, it might have made that much difference, but if it discusses all of the issues involved in the assault on the Branch Davidian community I think that's an entirely different matter.

VAN SUSTEREN: Stephen, I watched the trial that you tried for Timothy McVeigh and it was very apparent to me that there was a lot of information behind-the-scenes that we in the media were not privy to that only the lawyers and the judge and the prosecutor were privy to. Did anything come up during the course of your trial that we were not privy to that we might find disturbing or informative about Waco?

JONES: Yes. Judge Matsch authorized us, on our request, to conduct a wide-ranging investigation of what occurred at Waco because it was the basis of the government's motive claim against Mr. McVeigh. So we had, in 1996, Greta, photographs of these canisters. We knew about the Delta Force involvement and we knew other things that have not yet come out. Those are still under seal. The judge would not permit us to use them in the second stage, and his order was upheld by the 10th circuit. But there is fertile ground there for Senator Danforth.

VAN SUSTEREN: Now you say the "involvement of the Delta Force." What do you mean by the involvement because there appears that the Delta Force was present, but some members of Congress will say they were simply present and observing, were they actually, quote, "involved operational"?

JONES: I think that that's a matter that Senator Danforth will have to investigate and I probably shouldn't address it directly because it is under seal. I would think that the senator would want to look at the autopsy reports, interview people at the Karnes County Medical Examiner's Authority Office, and particularly look at the videotapes from the FBI plane taken at the back of the residence away from the media and away from what the public could see even at that great distance.

VAN SUSTEREN: And what's so fertile about that, what's there?

JONES: Well, I think they are very disturbing photographic images, which might suggest that there was a deliberate effort to keep the Branch Davidians in the residence building after the fires started when some of them wanted to escape out the back door.

COSSACK: Stephen, there has been at least allegations that, in the back part of that building, that there was firing going on by authorities that did not -- that prevented people from leaving that building. Is that what you are suggesting?

JONES: There is -- that allegation has been made, yes.

COSSACK: Do you have evidence to show that that's true because that's in fact what you just -- that's what your implication is is that, in fact, people couldn't come out because they were being shot at?

JONES: Well, let me simply say that there is competent authority and expert opinion that says that's what occurred.

VAN SUSTEREN: Do you think it would be smart of former senator Danforth to ask that your client waive attorney-client privilege and that the court release you from confidentiality orders so that you can talk to him?

JONES: Well, I don't think that there's anything that precludes me from talking with Senator Danforth. That's an official investigation appointed by the Department of Justice. I mean, I can't discuss attorney-client privileges, but there's a difference between that and matters that are still under seal. Once it is in the public domain, I feel I can discuss it. But much of it is still not in the public domain...."

New York Times 9/11/99 David Johnston "....The Justice Department recently sent Congress a complete copy of the 1993 report, which showed that bureau officials in Washington knew in December 1993 that combustible devices were used in the assault near Waco, Tex. The report seemed to cast doubt on the assertions of some law-enforcement authorities that officials in Washington were unaware, until recently, that F.B.I. agents fired combustible tear-gas canisters on the day of the assault. F.B.I. officials would not comment on the report. But law-enforcement officials suggested that the Justice Department was responsible for the missing page in the report sent to Congress. In the last few days, the Justice Department sent a complete report to the House Government Reform and Oversight Committee, which has sought information about the use of flammable tear-gas rounds in its re-examination of the assault. ....."

Salon 9/8/99 Camille Paglia "....My summer report begins with my enormous sense of satisfaction and relief over the renewal of public attention to the Waco disaster,which was so foul an affront to American civil liberties..... But the major media, with their strongly liberal bias, are equally guilty, for in trying to protect the new Democratic president, Bill Clinton, they let Reno get away scot-free with her blatant mismanagement of the Waco standoff. At the quickly convened congressional hearing into Waco in 1993, Reno's self-righteous invocation of the child-abuse card deserved to be derided and rejected by the media, who were already in a state of collective amnesia over the appalling spectacle of government tanks knocking down the buildings of a private citizen. Where were America's leftists after Waco? Diddling their thumbs in their urban and campus coteries, as usual. The shocking absence of protest about this incident drove the issue underground. It reemerged two years later on the lunatic far right, in Timothy McVeigh's bombing of the federal office building in Oklahoma City on the anniversary of Waco, at the cost of 168 lives....... When authentic critique is silenced or censored by the left, issues drift subliminally to the right, where they burst out again full-formed as fascist violence. Government authority was illegitimately used at Waco -- and one fascism begot another. .... "

Ft Worth Star-Telegram Washington Bureau 9/10/99 Ron Hutcheson ".... In a related development, Texas Gov. George W. Bush said yesterday that Department of Public Safety Commissioner James B. Francis was not raising questions about the FBI's handling of the case so that it would reflect badly on Attorney General Janet Reno, and by extension, Vice President Al Gore. "I strongly disagree with that," Bush said in Dallas yesterday. "Chairman Francis called me and said that there were a series of freedom of information requests and that he was going to encourage the Rangers to put all the information out so that he could analyze the data. His motives were full disclosure, something that many in the media were pleased to see." Bush said the call from Francis came about three weeks ago. ....."

Judicial Watch 9/10/99 Joe Giganti "...Former Republican Senator from Missouri John Danforth, widely acclaimed by the Washington Establishment and Janet Reno's hand-picked special counsel in the WACO matter, has stated that he will continue to work on client matters at his prestigious mega-law firm, Bryan, Cave, while overseeing the WACO investigation. Coupled with the fact that Mr. Danforth will be supervised by Janet Reno's deputy, Eric Holder (the person who has singlehandedly killed most Chinagate investigations at the Clinton Justice Department), this is a formula for disaster. "It would appear that the WACO investigation is getting off to a bad start. Ken Starr already proved that a part-time prosecutor, who can't keep his 'mind on the store,' will be ineffective, and with the addition of Eric Holder to supervise and block Mr. Danforth's initiatives, Danforth will be rendered impotent," stated Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton....."

Ft Worth Star-Telegram/AP 9/10/99 "....The attorney who defended Timonthy McVeigh says he does not believe that the Oklahoma City federal building would have been bombed had the entire truth about the Branch Davidian standoff near Waco been told immediately. Attorney Stephen Jones said he agrees with federal prosecutors that the fiery end to the Waco standoff prompted the bombing. "Had the wheels of justice worked and there been an independent investigation and the responsibility assessed, there would have beenn no reason for an attack on the federal government in Oklahoma City," Jones told the TULSA WORLD...."

http://www.elkodaily.com/Article_detail_display.cfm?ID=4167&Articletypeid=8 9/10/99 ".....First, there's the transference of victimhood. In the Waco case, the new victim is Attorney Janet Reno, who was, the spin goes, lied to by Freeh's boys at the FBI. Notice how nobody talks about all the dead children? No, those kids aren't victims. We believe President Bill Clinton put the federal line best, when he said, back in 1993, "Some religious fanatics killed themselves." ..... Moving from victim to perpetrator, Louis Freeh is the prime suspect in the Waco cover up. Why? As Robert Novak explains elsewhere on this page, the answer is that Clinton hates Freeh. Clinton has installed a deaf, dumb and blind woman as attorney general to protect the administration from any justice catching up to it and Freeh hasn't been very good at playing along. Clinton needs someone to blame for the Waco disaster in order to divert attention from the real killers, and Freeh is the guy...... "

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/bluesky_dougherty_com/19990910_xcjod_waco_dont_.shtml 9/10/99 Jon Dougherty "... Having said that, I think it's important to note that Lott -- and others -- should not be satisfied with just sacking Reno over Waco anyway. If they get any resignations at all, it's important to point out that Reno is not the only one who is guilty here. Sen. Lott, if you need a short list of people to hold liable for Waco and especially the resulting cover-up of what really happened there, check out a piece I wrote several days ago. That'll get you started. In the meantime, though, Sen. Lott and those like him ought to consider resigning themselves. Besides the Waco tragedy, Sen. Lott, you've allowed the most criminal president in U.S. history to flaunt the law, ignore the Constitution, sell our nuclear secrets to foreign interests, compromise our national security, lie to you, lie to the American people, lie in a court of law, and -- of course -- steal your FBI files. And let's not forget Randy Weaver, either. Sen. Lott, you and those like you did little to stop this criminal administration in the past, so what right have you to call for anyone's resignation now, if you're not prepared to step down as well? Being hypocritical does not a righteous man make. Lawmakers like you, Sen. Lott, are not guilty by an act of commission -- you are guilty by omission....."

Washington Post 9/11/99 Lorraine Adams Richard Leiby "....The Justice Department had evidence at least four years ago that one or more potentially incendiary tear gas rounds were fired during the 1993 Waco siege, but did not provide the evidence to congressional investigators. A 49-page FBI lab report, produced in December 1993, listed evidence from the site of the standoff and cited on its final page a "fired U.S. military 40mm shell casing which originally contained a CS tear gas round." When the Justice Department provided the report to a House panel investigating the Waco tragedy in the summer of 1995, the final page was missing, according to an internal Justice memo dated Sept. 2. The documents provide the first evidence that the Justice Department may have been aware of the potentially incendiary tear gas rounds before the FBI's admission last month that such rounds were used. The Justice Department has repeatedly stressed that it had no knowledge of the rounds, and expressed concern that the FBI had not turned over evidence pointing to their use sooner......"

Washington Post 9/11/99 Lorraine Adams Richard Leiby "....The disclosure that 40mm tear gas rounds, which burn as they release gas, were used in the final assault on the Branch Davidian compound on April 19, 1993, has prompted questions about whether government agents may have helped start the fire in which about 75 sect members, including children, perished. Both the Justice Department and the FBI maintain that the rounds did not contribute to the fire. The lab report appears to be one of thousands of pages of documents related to the Waco siege that were routinely provided to the Justice Department by the FBI. It is not clear whether the Justice Department was aware of the significance of the military tear gas round, which is not described as pyrotechnic in the report...."

Washington Post 9/11/99 Lorraine Adams Richard Leiby ".... It is also not clear that the final page of the lab report was deliberately withheld from Congress. The Sept. 2 memo notes that although "multiple" complete copies of the report were found in Justice Department files, four copies were found that were lacking the final page. Specifically, "the page on which mention is made of a shell casing for a military CS round and the expended tear gas projectives was not produced to Congress.".....Robert B. Charles, who was chief counsel for the 1995 congressional hearings on Waco and is now working for a new House inquiry being headed by Rep. Dan Burton (R-Ind.), said: "It boggles my mind that they would have withheld that from us. If you put it together with the other pieces of evidence that have come to light in the past four weeks, it suggests to me that there was a concerted effort on the part of the FBI or the Justice Department or both to cover up damning facts."...."

Indianapolis Newspapers, Inc. 9/11/99 Diana Penner "...An anonymous caller claimed Friday that an act of arson at the historic POW-built chapel at Camp Atterbury was in retaliation for the federal government's "declaration of war" at Waco, and he warned there would be more assaults. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and the State Fire Marshal's office are assisting local authorities in the investigation, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation has been notified. Friday's fire at Our Lady's Chapel in the Meadow came on the heels of another attempt to burn the tiny building near Edinburgh on Sept. 2. There was no call before or after that fire, and no one has been arrested. ..... The chapel, the only church in the United States built by Italian POWs, is located in Camp Atterbury, a military reservation occupied by the Indiana Army National Guard. Military officials have primary jurisdiction over the site and the investigation, McElwain said. The ATF was called in and the FBI apprised of the situation because federal property is involved, he said. McElwain said he was not aware of any similar threats made in connection with arsons, bombings or other assaults in Indiana..... Why a tiny, isolated chapel in Johnson County would be the target of similar [to OKC] fury is a mystery to McElwain. There are active militia members in the county, but they have not appeared to be interested in these kinds of activities, he said. "Most of the people we deal with on a daily basis are more of the tax protester types," he said...."