Waco Many Questions Still Unanswered Essay Research

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Waco: Many Questions Still Unanswered Essay, Research Paper WACO: MANY QUESTIONS STILL UNANSWERED On February 28, 1993, the nation watched as government law officials climbed the walls of the Branch-Davidian compound on Mount Carmel in Waco, Texas, breaking windows and throwing grenades inside the buildings, all for arresting Vernon Wayne Hall, A.K.A. David Koresh. Koresh was the leader of the Davidians, who believed that Koresh was a god who lived in this religious community on Mount Carmel. The public’s first view of this crisis was from the press’s not very supportive opinion of the Davidian’s beliefs. The newspaper articles were leaning on the government’s side, which they had every right to do, until April 19. On April 19, 1993, Mount Carmel rapidly burned to the

ground, taking the lives of seventy-six people. Millions of viewers across America watched the conflagration live on national television. Immediately, as the flames were seen on the screen, a government spokesman began explaining what was going on. The spokesman immediately told the country that this fire was an act of suicide by Koresh or his followers. Two days later, the press pretty much abandoned the whole Waco story. One year later, it was discovered that the Davidians didn’t use drugs, own guns, nor had they ever been accused of sexual misconduct. In October of 1993, Report Of The Deputy Attorney General On The Events At Waco, Texas, February 28 to April 19, 1993 (the edited version) was released by the FBI. In September of 1993, Report Of The Department Of Treasury On

The Bureau Of Alcohol, Tobacco, And Firearms Investigation Of Vernon Wayne Howell, A.K.A. David Koresh was released by the ATF. Despite all the reports that the government has put out against the Davidians, suspicions of foul play on the part of our government began because of multiple pieces of evidence, one of these pieces of evidence being the telephone conversations between Mount Carmel residents and the FBI. Another significant piece of evidence is the nine survivors of the fire have no recollection of how the fire began, because they didn’t see it start. The concern that most people have of this incident comes from the fact that the government lied, broke internal orders and, most importantly, denied the Mount Carmel residents their constitutional rights. This scandal is

more serious than other affairs, like Watergate, because the Attorney General, Janet Reno, stepped in for the President by giving the executive order for government officials to invade Mount Carmel. Eventually, Mount Carmel was burned to the ground and a lot of fingers point to the government officials who unmistakably did not cooperate with the Mount Carmel residents. In the Watergate affair, the public believes that the seriousness of the crisis comes from the President’s abuse of power, like the “Iran-Contra” or the “Lewinsky” scandals. They were major crises, but Waco involves improprieties by all three branches of government, and, as a result, innocent people were massacred. Waco is important for three major reasons: It raises questions about human rights in our

country; it involves a scandal involving all three branches of government; it opens the door for our government to tolerate more of this behavior. The residents of Mount Carmel were American citizens with constitutional rights, but their rights were violated because of complaints by Marc Brealt, a neighbor of the Branch Davidians, that children were being held in this compound against their will. Child welfare visited the place four times in 1991 and found nothing, but suspicion still grew. In March of 1992, neighbors saw men dressed in SWAT team attire practicing forced entries at an abandoned house nearby. Suspicion still continued to grow as rumors escalated from child molestation to alcohol and guns. In June of 1992, the ATF set up a pole camera to watch the compound. During