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Did the BATF and the FBI attempt to cover up agents conduct at the standoff with Branch Davidians in 1993

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Introduction

Waco: Radicalising the Right? An enormous and alarming concentration of resources- taxpayers money, government personnel and time, not to mention many lives were expanded on the social problem allegedly taking place in Waco, Texas. According to news sources, the planned raid of the Mount Carmel Branch Davidian property by the BATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms) was one of the largest civilian law enforcement actions in US history. "For years now, the disaster near Waco has been exhibit No. 1 for many who have deep distrust of the American government." From conspiracy sites on the Internet to documentary films, Waco has provided a focus for those who see the government as the enemy. And now they say there is proof the government has been lying. The initial operation involved approximately eighty federal agents, armed with semi-automatic and automatic weapons, orchestrated to execute a single search and arrest warrant. After the failed siege, in which at least six sect members and four agents died in a gun battle, and the ensuing 51 day standoff, in which an estimated 74 Davidians died, 21 of whom were children, the final toll included the tragic deaths of 84 people and cost the taxpayer 100 million dollars. By the end of the whole affair, an army in excess of 700 federal and state officials were involved in one capacity or another. The cruelest irony of all is that it need never have happened in the first place. A careful analysis of the so-called problem posed by the Branch Davidians suggests one that is hardly proportional to the official reaction it prompted. ...read more.

Middle

Mostly it was treated as non-reimbursable (military aid to law enforcement has to be reimbursed to Defense, unless it relates to drug law enforcement). The FBI also drew upon the military for some incredibly high-tech support. Three years later, the Army realized that the operation had been improperly funded, and demanded return of the funds. In March, 1996, the Army's General Counsel advised that the funds had been improperly used and that there is no evidence to suggest that David Koresh or any of the Davidians were ever involved in drugs. In fact, it appears from a variety of sources, including Retired BATF Deputy Director, Robert Sanders that "the planning of Waco and the manner in which it was done was for publicity." In addition to this, Public Relations Manager for the Bureau, Sharon Wheeler, contacted Dallas Television Stations 5 and 8 to warn of a significant event in the near future. Some historians have cited such actions of the BATF as their Congressional hearings were to follow in the following week and "such an event would increase political pressure upon congress to increase their budget". David Koresh's attorney Dick DeGuerin summed up BATF's attitude about the time they planned the raid: "It had looked to them like a dream situation - a bunch of religious nuts their SWAT teams could practice on. Who'd complain? Who'd care? Now that the "cold war" is over, the federal government needs internal enemies. Allowing the government to scapegoat any group puts us all at risk." Once the ATF realised that their assault on the Branch Davidian property to serve a search and arrest warrant on the suspicion that the ...read more.

Conclusion

However, rather than simply degrading, I argue the post-modern movement in general is a distaste reaction to such inequality, conspiracy and injustice experienced by minorities similar to David Koresh and the Davidians. It cannot be denied that the movement is not a dangerous device of those modern day historians willing to use it. However, ones further analysis to the purpose and perspective of the historian often reveals a class based persecution, injustice and struggle suppressed by an elitist opportunist. Citizens do not spend their weekends training with militia in a country at peace with itself. This structural analysis has been critical of both media and the authorities in handling the situation in Waco. The media have contributed directly to development and promotion of the anti-cult paradigm, to the extent that it can reasonably be referred to as a dominant hegemony of thought about new religions among the general public. There is a politically correct ideological position on so-called cults. All indications are that the confrontation between the BATF and the Branch Davidians in Waco, Texas was a set-up, planned for public relations purposes. The BATF had the news media alerted, the cameras rolling, and a search warrant that was obtained on trumped up charges. They disregarded the invitation of the Branch Davidians to peacefully enter the building and have a look around. They ignored opportunities to arrest David Koresh when he was alone. They recklessly ignored the presence of innocent women and children, and staged a paramilitary-style assault on the community. For what? To make a political statement, to enforce the morals of society, or to enforce the psyche of political correctness by retaliating against the religious fringe?" ...read more.

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