Essay Terrorism in America: The Oklahoma City Bombing

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Terrorism in America: The Oklahoma City Bombing

On April 19th 1995 the worst terrorist attack on US soil took place in the heartland of America. The Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma was targeted and almost completely blown to pieces by one enormous homemade bomb. The unthinkable had happened at the beginning of an average day at the office. This day would be remembered for the rest of America's history, unlike any other day, as a blatant attack on the United States government.

At 9:03 a.m. a massive bomb resting inside a rented Ryder truck destroyed half of the nine story federal building in downtown Oklahoma City. It also claimed the lives of 169 men, women, and children, while injuring hundreds
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He turned himself in, in Herington, Kansas, and was also charged with the bombing shortly after. (Clark, 1995)

There has been speculation that the bombing of the federal building was to demonstrate the anti-government feelings over the 1993 government raid of the Branch Davidian Compound in Waco Texas. Both McVeigh and Nichols were once sited at the compound in Waco and were openly supporting the other Branch Davidians. The bombing occurred exactly two years to the day after the compound burned to the ground killing 80 men, women, and children after a 51-day standoff between the Branch Davidians and the FBI. The bombing definitely put the spotlight on other groups with anti-government sentiments.

McVeigh's trial was set for Denver, Colorado on March 31, 1997. On June 3rd 1997, the jury found McVeigh guilty of all 11 counts, including eight counts of first degree murder in the deaths of eight federal law-enforcement agents, conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction, using a weapon of mass destruction, and destruction of a federal building. The jury deliberated for 23 and a half hours before rendering the verdict. In the end, McVeigh was left all alone as dozens of former best friends and family relatives testified against him (Eddy et al., 1997).

On June 14th 1997, the jury sentenced McVeigh to death by lethal injection. Many of the victims' families were elated with the decision, as many people could
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