PUSH NEWS INTERNATIONAL: October 14, 2021
In April 1995, with help of accomplice of Terry Nichols, a friend from army training, the disillusioned McVeigh had driven a truck bomb beneath the Alfred Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City and lit a two-minute fuse before fleeing the scene in a second vehicle he had parked nearby.
The truck, a 1993 Ford F-700 rental vehicle, contained 4,800lbs of explosives and it destroyed almost all the nine-storey property, killing 168 people, including 19 children.
And so on this hot June morning in 2001, the authorities were preparing to put to death the 33-year-old, who had felt inspired to attack with such force a symbol of the government he had come to distrust and despise. The execution was set for 7am Central Time, and McVeigh would soon be strapped to a gurney, in what would be the federal government’s first use of capital punishment since 1963.
In his first Union-Sun letter, McVeigh referenced a race war.
“Racism on the rise? You had better believe it!,” he wrote. “At a point when the world has seen communism falter as an imperfect system to manage people; democracy seems to be heading down the same road. Maybe we have to combine ideologies to achieve the perfect utopian government”
The letter also contained commentary on subjects popular in the militia and white nationalist movements.
“Crime is out of control. Criminals have no fear of punishment. Prisons are overcrowded so they know they will not be imprisoned long,” McVeigh predicted. “Taxes are a joke. Regardless of what a political candidate ‘promises,’ they will increase. More taxes are always the answer to government mismanagement. They mess up, we suffer. Taxes are reaching cataclysmic levels, with no slowdown in sight.”
Finally, McVeigh made it clear that if something didn’t change, the American middle class, which represented him and his family, would disappear.
“The ‘American Dream’ of the middle class has all but disappeared,” he wrote. “Politicians are further eroding the ‘American Dream’ by passing laws which are supposed to be a ‘quick fix,’ when all they are really designed for is to get the official reelected. These laws tend to ‘dilute’ a problem for a while, until the problem comes roaring back in a worsened form. (Much like a strain of bacteria will alter itself to defeat a known medication.)”
The entire process was disquieting.
One’s sympathies rushed to so many caught up in the affair, not least the victims and relatives from Oklahoma, 264 of whom had gathered to watch a live-feed of the execution taking place in Indiana.
Who knows what mix of emotions surged through their hearts that day, what thoughts occupied their minds as they sat and waited. In the eyes of many, McVeigh was a monster, and some of them hoped for satisfaction or some sort of emotional closure in seeing him die.
But one wondered whether McVeigh, powerless, his hair shorn to no more than a buzz and strapped down horizontal, lived up to that expectation
The execution was scheduled to start at 7am, and would involve three drugs being injected in succession into McVeigh’s body via an IV placed in his right leg – sodium thiopental to sedate him, pancuronium bromide to prevent him breathing, and potassium chloride to stop his heart.
There were just two people in the room with him, prison warden Harley Lappin and US Marshal Frank Anderson. Right on schedule, the warden asked the officer if the execution could proceed, and a final call was made to the Department of Justice in Washington DC to see if there was a reason to halt it. There was not.
“Warden, we may proceed with the execution,” said the officer, placing down a bright red phone he he had used to make the call.
An Associated Press reporter, who was among the witnesses, would reveal that soon afterwards, one of the IV lines extending through the wall could be seen to move as the first chemical began to flow. McVeigh swallow hard, his eyes moved slightly. His chest moved up and down.
At 7.14am McVeigh was declared dead.
When he came out to speak to us, the warden’s face looked drawn.
“The court order to execute Timothy McVeigh has been fulfilled,” he said. “Pursuant to the sentence of the US district court, Timothy James McVeigh has been executed by lethal injection.”
There had been 10 reporters in the room adjacent to the execution chamber.
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