INSIDE THE NEW OKLAHOMA CITY FBI DOCUMENTS
From: pdxs firstname.lastname@example.org - 5/14/01
What could possibly be in the thousands of pages of FBI records that the
government withheld from the lawyers representing Timothy McVeigh and
Terry Nichols? How about proof or a larger conspiracy, or evidence that
the government knew about the bomb plot in advance?
Here's a look at where some of that information might come from,
excerpted from Jim Redden's book "Snitch Culture" (Feral House, 2000):
WHAT DID THEY KNOW ... AND WHEN DID THEY KNOW IT
According to the U.S. Justice Department, the government's mishandling
of the Waco stand-off led directly to the largest single act of domestic
terrorism in United States history, the April 19, 1995 bombing of the
Alfred E. Murrah federal official building in Oklahoma City. Federal
prosecutors claim that former U.S. Army buddies Timothy McVeigh and
Terry Nichols blew up the building to avenge the death of the Davidians.
But at least one informant had tipped the government off to the plot in
advance, raising the question of why it was allowed to proceed.
At the very least, news reports and court records suggest the government
and private advocacy groups were tracking McVeigh years before the
bombing. He visited Waco during the 51-day siege, talking with other
government critics and openly selling anti-New World Order literature
and bumper stickers on the hood of a car. As it turns out, the
government was watching those who came to show their support for the
Davidians. "The FBI kept tabs on 'right-wing' sympathizers who flocked
to Waco during the siege and monitored Internet traffic," the Associated
Press reported on October 9, 1999.
Shortly after McVeigh was arrested for the bombing, the Cable News
Network reported that he had come to attention of undercover government
operatives at an Arizona gun show. At that time, McVeigh was reportedly
making a living buying and selling weapons and anti-government
literature at gun shows around the country. The report did not say
whether the operatives were BATF agents or paid informants.
Another sign that the government was or should have been aware of
McVeigh surfaced on April 21, two days after the Oklahoma City bombing,
when the Anti-Defamation League issued a press release tying McVeigh to
The Spotlight, a populist weekly newspaper with anti-Semitic overtones
published by a small, far-right, conspiracy-minded organization based in
Washington DC called the Liberty Lobby. The ADL release, which was
picked up by the Washington Post, said that McVeigh had purchased a
classified advertisement in the August 9, 1993 issue of The Spotlight to
sell "rocket launchers." According to the ADL, McVeigh purchased the ad
under the name T. Tuttle.
The ADL press release was mostly accurate. McVeigh had bought an ad for
a flare gun he called a "Law Launcher replica" using the name T. Tuttle.
But how did the ADL know about the ad? The ADL either had someone close
to McVeigh, or the government was tracking him and sharing the
information with the organization.
In the months following the bombing, the government alleged that McVeigh
and Nichols were assisted in the bomb plot by one or more "John Does." A
drawing of John Doe # 2 was released and widely circulated. As time went
on, however, the government backed down from this claim, eventually
saying that McVeigh and Nichols acted alone. Many independent reporters
and researchers still believe that other people were involved in the
A freelance journalist named J.D. Cash was the first to report that
McVeigh and at least a half-dozen other men planned the bombing at
Elohim City, a Christian Identity community called in rural Oklahoma.
McVeigh had been tied to Elohim City shortly after he was arrested. The
phone card mentioned in the ADL press release had been used to call the
community two weeks before the bombing.
On February 11, 1997, Cash published a story in the small McCurtain
Daily Gazette which revealed that a BATF informant named Carol Howe had
infiltrated Elohim City before the bombing. Howe had seen McVeigh (whom
she knew as Tuttle) and a number of other residents and visitors
plotting to blow up the Oklahoma City federal office building in late
1994. Although these allegations were largely ignored by the corporate
press, they were later confirmed by internal BATF documents which proved
Howe was an informant, that she saw McVeigh and other plotting to blow
up the Alfred E. Murrah building, and she notified her superiors of the
plot before the actual bombing.
The key to Howe's story is Elohim City, a primitive community founded
Robert Millar, a right-wing preacher. It was a common meeting place for
militant white supremacists over the years, including members of The
Order, a racist gang that murdered Jewish radio talk show host Alan Berg
and staged a series of high-profile bank robberies in the early 1980s.
As Time magazine confirmed on February 24, 1997, "The city's guest list
over the years has been a veritable Who's Who of the radical right."
There are a number of obvious links between Elohim City and the bombing.
One of Millar's followers was Richard Snell, a former leader of a racist
group called The Covenant, the Sword and the Arm of the Lord (CSA). In
the early 1980s, Snell and a number of other white supremacists had
plotted to blow up the Alfred E. Murrah building in retaliation for the
death of Posse Comitatus leader Gordon Kahl. On the morning of the 1995
Oklahoma City bombing, Snell was executed for killing a black Arkansas
State trooper and a pawnshop owner he thought was Jewish. According to
the June 16, 1996 issue of the Village Voice, Snell knew something big
was going to happen: "In the days before his execution on April 19,
1995, Snell, according to one prison official, reportedly said, 'There
was going to be a bomb, there was going to be an explosion' the day of
Elohim City was also a hideout for a gang of racist bank robbers who
called themselves the Aryan Republican Army (ARA). Between 1994 and
early 1996, the ARA robbed over 20 banks throughout the midwest,
stealing approximately $250,000. According to federal documents, at
least three meetings to organize the robberies took place at Elohim
Federal law enforcement officials seemed to link the ARA to the Oklahoma
City bombing almost immediately after it happened, saying that McVeigh
and Nichols financed the bomb plot with money robbed from banks in the
midwest. A little more than a month after the attack, Newsweek reported,
"the FBI expects to arrest 'a group of major players' within the next
several weeks, saying, "investigators are looking closely at a
white-supremacist group headed by Robert Millar in Elohim City, Okla."
(6) Although the government backed off from this accusation as McVeigh's
trial approached, one of the robbers, Michael Brescia, strongly
resembles John Doe #2
As it turned out, Howe was not the only informant at the Christian
Identity community. Founder Millar repeatedly shared information with
law enforcement officials. During a June 31, 1997 court proceeding, FBI
Senior Agent Peter Rickel testified Millar was in regular contact with
the agency in the years before the bombing. Millar confirmed that he
frequently talked to government officials the next day, telling the
Tulsa World newspaper that he had answered questions from such agencies
as the FBI and the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Writing about the revelation in the July 1, 1997 issue of the McCurtain
Daily Gazette, Cash said, "Millar's position as a mole for the FBI could
explain why the compound has never been raided. Despite its use as a
hideout for gunrunners, drug dealers, bank robbers and suspected members
of the conspiracy that bombed the Alfred E. Murrah federal building in
Oklahoma City, Elohim City has enjoyed a reputation as a place where
fugitives can live without fear of arrest."
Another informant who lived at Elohim City was James Ellison, a former
CSA member who helped devise the original Murrah building bombing plan
in the early 1980s. A few year later, Ellison testified in court against
several members of The Order. Because of this, he was considered a
traitor and snitch by all racist leaders - except Millar. On May 19,
1995, Ellison even married Millar's daughter, Angela.
The leader of the Aryan Republican Army was also an informant. Peter
Langan, the son of a retired U.S. Marine intelligence officer, and
Richard Guthrie, another racist, robbed a Pizza Hut in Georgia in
October 1992. A short time later, Langan was arrested by Georgia
authorities. Remarkably, the U.S. Secret Service intervened, arranging
for Langan to be released on a signature bond. At the time, the Secret
Service said that Langan had agreed to find Guthrie, who was suspected
of threatening the President. Langan did not turn Guthrie in, however.
Instead, the two men formed the ARA, recruited several other members,
and launched one of the most successful bank robbery sprees in U.S.
The Secret Service link has prompted several researchers to wonder
whether the ARA was, in fact, a covert government operation. They note
that the ARA never encountered any bank guards or other law enforcement
officials during any of their robberies. They also note that Langan,
Guthrie and the other ARA members were not arrested until after the
press began reporting on Elohim City. Guthrie was found dead in his
prison cell a few days after telling relatives that he was writing a
book on the ARA that would embarrass the government. Although the death
has been ruled a suicide, the coroner's report has never been released.
Yet another likely informant was Elohim City's security director,
Andreas Strassmeier. The son of a high-ranking German official,
Strassmeier spent several years in the German army, including a stint as
an intelligence officer. He came to the United States in 1989, when the
U.S. and German governments were running an operation to stop the flow
of neo-Nazi literature from America to Germany, where it is illegal.
Strassmeier immediately moved to Elohim City, where Millar put him in
charge of security. He is the person McVeigh phoned two weeks before the
Oklahoma City bombing with his Spotlight calling card. Strassmeier fled
the country after his name surfaced in the press.
In the months before the bombing, Howe sent over 70 reports to Karen
Finley, her BATF control officer. In her reports, Howe reported that
Strassmeier, the ARA members, and a number of other people at Elohim
City were planning to bomb federal office buildings, including the one
in Oklahoma City. Alarmed, Finley requested that the BATF raid the
racist encampment. Her request was turned down after being reviewed by
top FBI and Department of Justice officials in February 1995.
Judge Richard Matsch prohibited Howe from testifying about her work at
Elohim City at McVeigh's trial, saying her testimony might "confuse" the
After Howe went public with her story, the federal government indicted
her on explosives charges. She went to trial in August 1997, with her
attorney, Clark Brewster, arguing she bought the explosives at the
direction of the government. Brewster entered Howe's BATF reports into
evidence at the trial. In them, Howe says she saw McVeigh meeting with
ARA members to plot the bombing. The jury believed Howe and acquitted
her of all charges.
Reports that McVeigh had collaborators
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