Waco Siege; Did the Government have a right to kill the members of the Branch Davidians?
After reading all of the evidence presented you will need to ask yourself the following two questions; One, did the Government have a right to kill the members of the Branch Davidians along with David Koresh? Two, did the Branch Davidians have the right to self-defense and kill four ATF agents?
Facts not in dispute: During the 51-day siege in Waco Texas there were 76 members of the Branch Davidians killed, including 25 children, two pregnant women, and its leader Vernon Wayne Howell (AKA David Koresh), as well as, the deaths of four ATF special agents; Conway LeBleu, Todd W. McKeehan, Robert J. Williams, and Steven D. Willis?
NOTE: The Branch Davidians were considered a religious cult by the Federal Authorities.
What led to the Waco Siege
In May 1992, The ATF began an extensive investigation of David Koresh (aka: David Wayne Howell) and the Branch Davidians. The investigation centered on Koresh and the Branch Davidians being involved in the illegal manufacture and possession of machineguns and other destructive devices, including bombs and grenades. In fact, ATF’s investigation showed that the group had acquired the following:
- 136 firearms, including assault rifles and handguns
- 700+ magazines for those firearms
- 200,000+ rounds of ammunition
- 110 upper and lower receivers for AR-15/M16 rifles
- Grenade-launcher attachments for AR-15/M16 rifles
- 400+ empty M31 rifle grenades, along with black powder and other explosive chemicals
The investigation involved many different facets, including: interviews with former cult members; inspection and interview of a federal firearms dealer; review of documentation showing the purchase of large quantities of AR-15 rifles, ammunition and inert grenades (which can be readily converted to live grenades); and records from interstate shippers. An ATF undercover agent became an associate member of the Davidians, albeit with limited access to their compound. In February 1993, sufficient evidence had been gathered to allow for the issuance of federal arrest and search warrants, to arrest Koresh and search the compound. (ATF)
Who were the Branch Davidians?
During his opening statement on April 28, 1993 in a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee to “examine the events surrounding the standoff between Federal law enforcement agencies and members of the Branch Davidian cult near Waco, TX”, the Honorable Jack Brooks, a Representative in Congress from the State of Texas, and Chairman of the Judiciary Committee, began with his description of the Branch Davidians as a cult akin to terrorists and led by a cult leader that went by the name of David Koresh.
Who did the Department of the Treasury believe the Branch Davidians were?
According to the September 1993 Department of the Treasury’s Waco Administrative Review “the Branch Davidian movement was started by a number of Seventh Day Adventists who believed strongly in the prophecies of the book of Revelation. David Koresh, then named Vernon Wayne Howell, took over leadership of the group in 1987. The Compound residents were extremely devoted to Koresh, and many apparently believed that he was the lamb of God.
In the course of this report, the Review has used the term “cult” to refer to Koresh and his followers. The term is not intended and should not be taken as a reference to the Branch Davidian movement generally. The Review is quite aware that “cult” has pejorative connotations, and that outsiders—particularly those in the government—should avoid casting aspersions on those whose religious beliefs are different from their own. The definition of cult in Webster ‘s Third New International Dictionary (unabridged) includes: “a great or excessive devotion or dedication to some person, idea or thing” and “a religion regarded as unorthodox or spurious.” In light of the evidence of the conduct of Koresh and his followers set out in this report, the Review finds “cult” to be an apt characterization.”
Were the Branch Davidians a cult or were they being used as pawns to further a political agenda?
During the April 28, 1993 hearing Charles E. Schumer, of New York further described this cult as having “amassed one of the largest and most deadly arsenals ever faced by U.S. law enforcement… with more than 100 fully automatic machine guns, grenades, and other materials such as explosives and bomb components.” He then used this incident to announce his pending “legislation to address part of the problem by banning the sale of machinegun parts that can be used to convert legal firearms to machine guns unless the purchaser is a legal machinegun owner, and to ban the sale of such parts by mail in all cases…this legislation will also prohibit the sale of large-caliber ammunition to all but law enforcement and military agencies.”
After the Government’s public statements, what was the public supposed to believe?
With statements like these from our duly elected Government officials were we still supposed to believe that our Government could be fair and impartial and could these same Government officials assure the free people of the United States that they “do not need to fear a corrupt or dishonest Government agency” from “acts of venality or cover up”(s)?
In the end a subsequent investigation by the Departments of Treasury and Justice regarding the actions of law enforcement agents during the siege determined that some tactics and decisions were poorly executed; and in fact, certain actions by ATF were criticized. (ATF)
We are continually updating this post – please keep checking back for more updates.
In the meantime check out our Free Downloadable Reference Documents from sources like the UN, CFR, WTO, WHO, IMF, World Bank, Federal Reserve, DOJ, FBI, ATF, CIA, NSA and others to ensure you have the reference documentation you need.
You may also be interested in our story on Ruby Ridge.
Waco Siege Documentation:
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