-Caveat Lector-

"To subdue the enemy without fighting is the supreme excellence."
                        -- Sun Tzu, author of The Art of War

Sunday, August 29, 1999

20th Century Heroes
Augusto Pinochet is being persecuted by the global elite and Marxist Left,
not because of alleged crimes against humanity, but because he led one of
the few counter-revolutions that succeeded in ousting a Communist regime.

"For several years now, I have read THE NEW AMERICAN, for its advocacy, its
insights, its information, its unique point of view."
               Patrick Buchanan

Exposing the Web of Deceit
by William F. Jasper

For most Americans, it seems, the important questions concerning the 1993
Waco tragedy have been adequately answered by various government
investigations and media reports which followed the disastrous event. The
51-day standoff at the complex of the Branch Davidians and the deadly
inferno which took the lives of more than 70 of its residents on April 19th
were the result of the hell-bent intransigence of its evil, megalomaniacal
leader, David Koresh.
  Waco: Rules of Engagement - $25.00

This video details events surrounding the siege of the Branch Davidians
which ultimately cost the lives of 4 federal agents and 86 men, women, and
children in a deliberately set conflagration. Without question the lies of
the federal agencies are exposed for what they are. (©1997 VHS, 137 minutes)

That is what we have been told in one official report after another, and in
most of the press accounts. In September 1993, the U.S. Treasury Department,
which is in charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF),
weighed in with its massive report, Investigation of Vernon Wayne Howell,
also known as David Koresh. The following month, the Department of Justice
published its Report to the Deputy Attorney General on the Events at Waco,
Texas. These were followed by congressional hearings, which in many ways
criticized and challenged the ATF's and FBI's conduct during, and accounts
of, the deadly operation, but in the end appeared to vindicate the actions
and decisions of the federal agents and agencies involved. Henceforth, only
the totally irrational and irresponsible "fringies" and extremists would
continue to concern themselves about alleged government abuses, impropriety,
excessive force, and cover-up at Waco.

Unfolding Story

Not anymore. With the release of Waco: The Rules of Engagement, a powerful
two-and-a-half hour documentary, a whole new chapter has been opened in this
still-unfolding story. And it is a very disturbing chapter that is
unsettling a great many people who thought that this matter had been laid to
rest -- including many "liberal" folks who had bought the pacifying
explanations of Janet Reno, Bill Clinton, and the parade of ATF and FBI
witnesses who traipsed up to the witness stands of various hearings.

Waco: The Rules of Engagement is not the first credible challenge to the
official "Koresh is totally to blame" line. Investigative reporter Dick
Reavis' excellent book, The Ashes of Waco, skewers government officials with
many of their own lies, distortions, discrepancies, and misrepresentations.
And an important new work, No More Wacos, greatly amplifies Reavis' earlier
research. Numerous articles by a wide variety of authors have also pointed
out many troubling facts which dispute the government's story.

However, the producers of Waco: The Rules of Engagement have raised the
challenge to a whole new level, both with the startling evidence they have
gathered and the powerfully effective manner of their presentation. This is
not another flimsy video effort like Waco: The Big Lie by Linda Thompson,
nor does it resemble any of the other misbegotten, misinformed, amateurish
Waco videos of the past. Executive producers Dan Gifford and Amy
Sommer-Gifford, together with co-producer William Gazecki, are veteran news
and movie professionals. Dan Gifford combines years as a news correspondent
at ABC, PBS, and CNN with his experience as a television and movie actor (he
has roles in the current movies Contact and Mad City) and management of
SomFord Entertainment, a Los Angeles company representing actors, directors,
and writers. Amy Sommer-Gifford and William Gazecki are also experienced
Hollywood hands, and it shows in the final product.

In Waco: The Rules of Engagement, the Giffords and their researchers have
assembled some very heavy artillery to demolish many of the falsehoods and
much of the demonizing propaganda spread by government officials and the
compliant, prostitute press concerning Koresh and his followers. In so
doing, they have actually composed a masterful exposé of the two major
events and cover-ups at Waco: the initial ATF "search" attempt on February
28, 1993 -- which precipitated the siege -- and the FBI's final assault on
April 19th. They have adroitly combined news footage of the Waco standoff
and conflagration with excerpts of congressional hearings, interviews with
numerous experts and witnesses, previously unseen video interviews with the
Davidians taken inside the compound before the fire, documents, and crime
scene exhibits.

FLIR Footage

One of the most sensational segments of this documentary involves aerial
Forward Looking Infrared (FLIR) movie footage taken by the FBI's own
observation plane over the Waco compound. The FLIR footage looks like
black-and-white television camera footage, but registers heat sources. It is
the same technology used by U.S. forces during Desert Storm. Sandwiched
between the FLIR movie clips are the repeated claims by FBI officials and
their congressional supporters that the FBI "did not fire a single shot"
during the entire siege. We see, for instance, Representative Gene Taylor
(D-MS) asking, "Did the FBI fire one shot -- even one shot -- at the
Davidian compound?" To which senior FBI official Larry Potts (of Ruby Ridge,
Waco, and Oklahoma City bombing infamy) replies, "No sir, not throughout the
entire standoff." The problem is that those claims -- according to the FBI's
own FLIR footage -- are obviously blatant lies. The Giffords' Waco takes us
step by step through the most important segments of the FLIR film, often
using freeze frames or slow motion, accompanied by commentary from Dr.
Edward F. Allard, one of the top authorities on FLIR technology.

Dr. Allard, a former deputy director of the U.S. Defense Department's Night
Vision Laboratory, helped pioneer much of the infrared thermal imaging
technology now in use and holds patents on FLIR-related inventions. In a
calm, scientific manner, Allard authoritatively explains the significance of
various heat sources seen on the film, including what he asserts are clearly
muzzle flashes from automatic weapons fire from outside the building being
fired into the building. Much of this shooting into the building follows
what Allard describes as the FBI's "infantry/tank maneuver" in which federal
officers on foot apparently are using the armored tank for cover as it
punches through the walls of the complex.

Dr. Allard's assessment is backed up by an analysis conducted by the
Infraspection Institute for CBS' 60 Minutes. (The CBS newshounds never
broadcast their blockbuster findings, of course, which is what one would
expect from the network that aptly has been dubbed the "Clintonista
Broadcast Service.") In addition to his video testimony, we have reviewed
Dr. Allard's sworn affidavit concerning the FLIR footage, which adds even
more compelling weight to his charge.

If the Allard and Infraspection analyses of the FLIR film are correct -- and
to the (admittedly untrained) eyes of this viewer their expert analyses very
convincingly match what is actually seen on the film -- then this one
segment alone from Waco: The Rules of Engagement is sufficient to completely
demolish one of the government's central contentions and to justify
officially reopening this case. It not only demonstrates that FBI and
Justice Department officials, including Attorney General Janet Reno, lied
repeatedly under oath when they claimed that no shots were fired by the FBI,
but may also mean that the same federal officers who fired into the building
are guilty of murdering Davidians who were trying to flee the burning

Who Set the Blaze?

But the FLIR footage also appears to hold the answer to another (literally)
burning question: Who or what started the fatal fire that ripped through the
Davidian complex with such lightning speed? We see Janet Reno
straight-facedly testifying that she has "absolutely no doubt at all that
the cult members set it." However, the FLIR footage shows flashes right
after the FBI tank punched holes through the complex's walls and inserted
the highly flammable and toxic CS gas/mist into the residence. Within three
minutes, three separate fires erupted in the three separate locations where
the gas had been inserted. Spent cartridges from two 40 millimeter
pyrotechnic military devices were found where two of the fires started. But
FBI official Bob Ricks is seen insisting that only "non-pyrotechnic delivery
systems were used to insert the CS gas."

The received wisdom is that Koresh and his followers set the fire themselves
in a fiendish mass-suicide scheme. As "proof," the FBI has cited taped
comments (from FBI "bugs") by Koresh and others inside the complex
concerning pouring and lighting fuel. However, these intercepted comments
had been ripped out of context and out of time. They had actually been
spoken hours before the fire started and were comments concerning the making
of "molotov cocktails" to use as defensive weapons against the tank. There
appears to be no evidence that the Davidians ever used any of the cocktails,
perhaps because they realized that doing so would present a greater danger
to themselves.

If the FBI did not intentionally set the fire, it must, at the very least,
be held criminally negligent for failing to anticipate the logical outcome
of its irresponsible actions. The documentary quotes Joseph Perino, former
chief of the Houston Fire Department, and Eric R. Larsen, a Dow Chemical
expert, who both explain that in punching the gaping holes in the sides of
the buildings and saturating the complex with highly flammable chemicals,
the FBI "experts" were creating conditions which would allow the Texas winds
to turn a spark into a fireball.

"Massive Gas"

The incredible decision to use the deadly CS "tear gas" in the first place
is yet another matter that was never adequately examined in official
investigations. The gas attack actually involved enormous quantities of CS
powder dissolved in methylene chloride (paint thinner) pumped into the
Davidian complex through a long pipe protruding from an armored tank. The
concentrations the Davidians -- including many elderly people, women, and
small children -- were subjected to were many times higher than would
normally be used by police or military units. As FBI spokesman Bob Ricks
stated in a press conference as the attack got underway, "We put massive gas
in there." Indeed, and as various experts testified, these were lethal
levels, especially for the babies, who could not be fitted with gas masks.

And when the toxic, flammable mixture burned, it produced even deadlier
hydrogen cyanide gas, the same substance used in prison gas chambers.
William Marcus, an inhalant toxicologist for the federal EPA who is
interviewed on the effects of hydrogen cyanide, explains that it makes the
muscles contract so violently that they actually bend and break one's bones.
A photo of the body of one of the Davidian children shows the small corpse
with the spine bent severely backward, the obvious result of the cyanide

For anyone who watched the televised 1995 Waco hearings conducted by the
Joint Subcommittee of the U.S. House of Representatives, surely one of the
most gratingly memorable characters must be the snide, sneering,
sanctimonious, acid-tongued Representative Charles Schumer (D-NY).
Fortunately, Waco: The Rules of Engagement allows the ever-obnoxious Schumer
repeatedly to discredit himself with his own words. In one segment of the
hearings Schumer is shown upbraiding defense attorney Dick DeGuerin for
referring to the FBI's "flash-bangs" as grenades. Schumer fulminates: "This
idea of the FBI having hand grenades, not flash-bangs, but hand grenades --
And then the coup de grace, Mr. DeGuerin says flash-bangs can kill, injure,
maim. Anyone who knows anything about these things knows they can't."

The documentary then cuts to Congressman Bob Barr (R-GA) questioning ATF
agent Jim Cavanaugh. Barr asks if the flash-bangs used by the ATF and
referred to by Schumer are classified as destructive devices under 26 USC
Section 6845 (f), to which Cavanaugh answers in the affirmative. Barr then
asks if it is true that they can kill people, to which Cavanaugh replies,
"Certainly. Yes sir." So much for the self-anointed know-it-all, Mr.

Bold Lies

But let's drop back to Mr. Cavanaugh. Over and over again, Cavanaugh is
caught -- on audio and video tape -- in one lie after another. One
outstanding example is a recording of his telephone negotiations with Koresh
while federal agents are firing on the Davidian complex from helicopters.
Cavanaugh begins by asserting, "Well, I think we need to first set the
record straight, and that is that there was [sic] no guns on those
helicopters." To which Koresh heatedly retorts, "That's a lie ... Jim,
you're a damn liar!" Cavanaugh then says, "I said they didn't shoot. There's
no guns on --" to which Koresh repeatedly responds: "YOU'RE A DAMN LIAR!"
Cavanaugh pauses, knowing he's caught in a lie, then comes back with this
weasel-worded response intended to pacify Koresh: "What I'm saying is that
those helicopters didn't have mounted guns. OK? I'm not disputing that there
may have been fire from the helicopters...."

At the House hearings, Cavanaugh nearly broke into tears as he described how
the ATF agents were outgunned by the big, bad Davidians. "They were throwing
everything at us.... They were hitting us with .223s, AK-47s, .50 calibers,"
he blurted emotionally. But he was contradicted by retired ATF Deputy
Director Dan Hartnett, who told the House investigation, "We weren't
outgunned at Waco, that's for sure."

Cavanaugh was also refuted by the ATF's own videotapes, which show a heavily
armed force of ATF agents, and by the local 911 tapes, on which the
Davidians are pleading with the operator for help from someone -- anyone --
to get the ATF to stop the shooting. The ATF agents finally stopped
shooting -- after they ran out of ammo. As various witnesses pointed out, if
the Koresh disciples were truly intent on killing the ATF agents, they could
have mowed them down as they retreated helpless across the open fields. But
they allowed the ATF to flee unmolested.

The Human Side

Without embracing or defending the odd, apocalyptic theology and practices
of the Branch Davidians, Waco: The Rules of Engagement effectively humanizes
Koresh and his followers, which is no small task, considering the massive
vilification campaign to which they were subjected. Jack Harwell, sheriff of
McClennan County, is one who helps in this respect. A calm, soft-spoken,
grandfatherly man, Sheriff Harwell is no redneck cracker. He knew David
Koresh and the Davidians better than did any of the federal officials and
media "experts." He didn't agree with or approve of the Branch Davidians'
religion and lifestyle, but respected their right to live and worship as
they pleased. "They had different beliefs than others, different beliefs
than I have, maybe different beliefs than you have -- in their way of life
and especially in their religious beliefs, but basically they were good
people," the sheriff noted sadly after the fire. "I was around them quite a
lot. They were always nice and mannerly."

Some of the other important witnesses who appear in the film include:

• Farris Rookstool. As the FBI's forensic photographer who photographed
nearly all of the bodies of the Branch Davidians, he was alarmed by what he
saw: "I'm left with the overall disturbing, haunting opinion that many of
the victims were homicide victims." And it was the FBI whom he felt was

• Dr. Nizan Peerawani. Peerawani, the medical examiner for Tarrant County,
allowed his videographer to turn over his videotape of the crime scene,
which especially focused on the bodies of the victims, to the FBI. The feds
promised they would return it the next day. When he requested the tape be
returned, he was treated to a series of delaying excuses. Finally he was
told the tape was "lost."

• Texas Rangers David Byrnes and Maurice Cook. Captain Cook says point blank
that "we were lied to" by the FBI. And according to Captain Byrnes, the FBI
destroyed much valuable evidence at the scene and violated standard
investigative procedures unlike "any crime scene I've ever been on."

• Robert Rodriguez. As the ATF's undercover agent at the Davidian compound,
Rodriguez warned his superiors to abort the February 28th attack on the
Davidians, because Koresh had already been tipped off (thanks to the ATF's
own publicity effort) and the ATF had lost the element of surprise.
Rodriguez accused his superiors of lying to the House subcommittee.

Waco: The Rules of Engagement has the potential to awaken millions of
soporific Americans from their deadly lethargy and ignorance. Unfortunately,
to date it has seen only limited exposure in a few select movie theaters
across the country. Amy Sommer-Gifford told THE NEW AMERICAN that while the
film is scheduled for several more theater dates, there are plans to make it
available on videotape later this year.

 © Copyright 1999 American Opinion Publishing Incorporated


CTRL is a discussion and informational exchange list. Proselyzting propagandic
screeds are not allowed. Substance—not soapboxing!  These are sordid matters
and 'conspiracy theory', with its many half-truths, misdirections and outright
frauds is used politically  by different groups with major and minor effects
spread throughout the spectrum of time and thought. That being said, CTRL
gives no endorsement to the validity of posts, and always suggests to readers;
be wary of what you read. CTRL gives no credeence to Holocaust denial and
nazi's need not apply.

Let us please be civil and as always, Caveat Lector.
Archives Available at:

To subscribe to Conspiracy Theory Research List[CTRL] send email:

To UNsubscribe to Conspiracy Theory Research List[CTRL] send email:


Reply via email to