As far as preparedness for the events that happened on April 19, 1995, the federal government could in fact be cited as negligent. However, it was, as Representative Key points out, not the desire of the government, or even the governor of Oklahoma at the time, to pursue an investigation as to the lack of preparedness for the events that took the lives of 169 people that day.
It leaves unanswered, too, the question of the man referred to as John Doe who was seen with McVeigh that day, and who was described as "Middle Eastern" by witnesses (Allen, 2008). The federal government has said that there was no such man, and that witnesses are confused in their recollections; witnesses adamantly stand by their recollections (Allen, 2008). Why, then, the question arises, would the government take the position that no such man exists? The only answer could be that the government is still looking for the man and continuing to investigate its leads on this reported McVeigh accomplice, who, in fact, given the events of September 11, 2001, was the focus of renewed public interest and speculation. Could this man lead to additional information and evidence surrounding the events of September 11, 2001?
This is a question that remains unanswered until such a time as the investigation is resolved - if there is an ongoing investigation.
If not since 1995, certainly since 2001, the events of domestic terrorism has caused the United States government to be more concerned with security in not just federal buildings, but also airports and other sites of public access and transportation that might once have been vulnerable.
Emergency Response on April 19, 1995
What stands as apparent is that the federal government did not share its knowledge of a threat against the Murrah Building with local Oklahoma City emergency response officials; that is, local police, fire and medical emergency response officials. What is apparent, as seen in news footage from that day, is that the response of the local emergency and disaster relief entities was timely and responsive to the events. Police and fire personnel are recorded on news footage as being on the scene in short order, and working desperately, devotedly, to rescuing victims and saving lives. There can be nothing short of praise for the men and women who fulfilled their public obligation to the people of Oklahoma City in responding to the events of the bombing. To those civilian individuals who responded to the disaster, nurses and others, their efforts were the natural response of the human condition that compels one to take action in the face of disaster and human distress.
What is not in synch with the nature of humanity and the desire to rescue and save, are the witness reports of the federal agencies, the FBI and the ATF, taking over the crime scene and, it has been alleged, and the actions of these agencies appear consistent with the allegations; in an effort to minimize the public response to the fact that there were explosives and weapons stored in a federal office building that also housed a children's daycare, the FBI and the ATF exerted their authorities over the crime scene (Allen, 2008).
The FBI and the ATF did not impede the care or rescue of victims. They did evacuate the rescue scene when there were reportedly as many three subsequent alarms of a potential explosion (Allen, 2008). This is not inconsistent with prudent cautionary measures; but allegations exist suggesting that the agencies evacuated the rescue sites in order to covertly remove debris of explosive devices and other weaponry that were improperly stored in the offices of the ATF (Allen, 2008). It is the lack...
Whether or not the government has taken away any lessons learned from the incident as it regards storage of explosive devices in office buildings remains to be seen since they have never investigated that issue, although they have, since that time, admitted to the fact that there were devices stored there, but the government adamantly denies that the devices posed a threat or contributed to the loss of life on that date.
Seismologist Dr. Raymond Brown, Sarkeys Energy Center, University of Oklahoma, says that seismographic activity was recorded by two seismograms believed to be from the Murrah Federal Building; near the University of Oklahoma campus, a site run by the Oklahoma Geological Survey, a little more than 16 miles to the southeast of Oklahoma City; and Omiplex Oklahoma, which was located much closer to the site (Allen, 2008). Brown says there was confusion in the data, but the data supports that the dominant ground wave is an approximate measure of the time the Murrah Building was vibrating (Allen, 2008). The air blast is the measurement of the length of time the truck blast was occurring, and the additional vibration is not explained by the truck bomb. The measurement of the vibrating from the building supports the allegations that explosives were stored in the building. As does the nature of the damage of the building, according to explosives expert retired General Benton Partin, who prepared and explained floor by floor charts detailing the damage to the building and what, in his expert opinion, was the source area of the damage (Allen, 2008).
During media interviews, John McGall, the head of the ATF maintained that emergency preparedness on the part of the ATF was high on that day, since it was the anniversary of Waco, Texas Branch Davidian disaster. Of the eleven ATF agents assigned to the Murrah Building that day, only one agent was killed and the other ten agents were unaccounted for according to the documentary Oklahoma City: What Really Happened? (Allen, 2008).
Mike Moroz, tire shop owner and eyewitness to the John Doe riding with McVeigh, contends regardless of what the government says about his confused memory, he remains himself certain that a Middle Eastern man accompanied McVeigh that day (Allen, 2008). Another witness, a government employee injured in the bombing, reports having seen of apparent Middle Eastern descent standing across the street from the Murrah Building as the chaos of the aftermath unfolded, and that that man appeared pleased, smiling, and in "rapture" over what he was witnessing in the destruction and loss of life (Allen, 2008).
The government's lack of response to questions about the missing John Doe, and their position that the eye witnesses are confused about the existence of that individual, only serves to spark conspiracy theories and give rise to distrust of governmental public authority. It does not, however, require the extremist response such as that taken by Timothy McVeigh. The hope is that the public has a better understanding of what they are entitled to as regards their Constitutional rights, and that they act to preserve and exercise those rights through due process and voting. The American political system is designed to give Americans control over the individuals who lead the system; and if they fail their constituency, the constituency should fail to reelect those individuals to public office.
The 2000 presidential elections showed Americans that their votes count more than ever in today's political processes. However, conspiracies, though sometimes outrageous in nature, usually have an ingredient of truth to them. It is this ingredient that, while the overall recipe goes wrong, nonetheless yields an edible result - regardless of the taste.
In Oklahoma City, people are still sensitive to the government's seemingly covert attempt to remove evidence of the ATF's cache of weaponry and explosives.
Profile of a Domestic Terrorist
Timothy McVeigh is cited as having revealed his disconnect with the rules of society prior to the 1995 OKC bombing. In his book, David J. Whittaker (2004), Whittaker says this about McVeigh's breaking point:
As a security guard at a defence contractor's plant in 1991, McVeigh was able to hone his capacities for surveillance and method taking. More than ever it was the tyranny of governmental intrusion that threatened his way of life, indeed, his very survival. He wrote to a local paper in heated, anguished terms: 'America is in serious decline and I am too. Do we have to shed blood to reform the present system? I hope not - but it might…
617). Certainly, it is one thing to mandate policies that apply to normal circumstances such as a warehouse fire where property should be protected but not at the expense of emergency responders' lives; by very sharp contrast, though, when human beings are in jeopardy and emergency responders believe they can make a difference in a life-or-death outcome, polices do not mean all that much. This relativistic view of what
Law Enforcement Communications Interoperability of Emergency Service Communications The number and scope of each individual emergency and public safety agency has resulted in an ad hoc patchwork of communication equipment. Routine daily needs within one agency for clear and concise communication fall short of readiness for large-scale emergencies involving either multiple services or jurisdictions. The current budgeting autonomy of each public service department has resulted in a many agencies with antiquated equipment,
A lack of local understanding by FEMA and & #8230;. Caused a clear inability for these agencies to exercise their logistics plan during such a catastrophic event. The first clear weakness was experienced by FEMA, the national organization appointed to deal with supplementing local relief efforts and providing extended services to those in need in an event of a natural disaster or terrorist attack. FEMA is supposed to work as
Emergency Prepare...Longitudinal Emergency preparedness is an important topic in civic planning both in the medical care industry and in community planning. Significant negative effects can occur when a department, institution, city or region fails to respond to an emergency in a manner that has the highest rate of success with regard to loss of life as well as loss of infrastructure and/or important public services. Due in large part to the
There were incidences of the army having supplies but no requests came in for the supplies from FEMA which was supposed to be initiating that. The lack of the CIA activation also meant there was no unified command on the ground hence the delay of the arrival of the active duty-federal troops in New Orleans. Even though there were in excess of 50,000 troops sent with resources from over 49
Question 2 Unfortunately, September 11, 2001 was not the first major terrorist attack that took place on U.S. soil. Prior to 9/11, several other bombings really hit American defenses hard, causing emergency response teams to test their logistics plans like no other way possible. The 1995 bombing damaged 324 buildings, injured 680 people, and killed 168 (Giordano 2002). It was a shocker across the nation, and many emergency response agencies were