Timothy McVeigh and Theodore, Ted, Kaczynski are two of the most dangerous terrorists to plan and carry out attacks in the United States. They are two examples why many are against President Donald Trump’s travel ban because both men are Americans.
Timothy McVeigh: A Terrorist’s Beginning
McVeigh was arrested and convicted of one of the deadliest terrorist invasions in the U.S. He was born in Pendleton, N.Y. His parents were divorced when he was a young boy and went to live with his father in the middle-income town where he was born. McVeigh and his grandfather were close, and together they shared a fondness for guns.
In high school, this future terrorist enjoyed playing football and church bingo. It is also when he read the novel, “The Turner Diaries,” written by William Pierce, who was known for his beliefs on Naziism. This book detailed an incident about a bombing of a Federal building. The plot was part of the Aryan revolution overturning the government in the future. This ignited his paranoia that the U.S. government secretly intended to take away the second Amendment. McVeigh was an all-American terrorist.
Graduating from high school, in 1986, was one of this fanatic’s few accomplishments. He was granted a scholarship to a business school but dropped out. In 1988, he joined the U.S. Army and became an outstanding soldier in the Persian Gulf War. McVeigh earned the Bronze Medal of Honor for bravery, one of the army’s highest awards. This honor gave him the opportunity to be part of the U.S. Army Special Forces; the Green Berets. However, after only a couple of days, he dropped out and was discharged. After becoming disgusted with the military, McVeigh traveled the gun circuit selling various weapons. He preached about the corruption of the government to anyone who would listen.
Timothy McVeigh and Buddies Blow Up Federal Building
He maintained friendships with army buddies, Terry Nichols and Micheal Fortier. The two men helped him orchestrate the attack on the Alfred P. Murrah Federal building in Oklahoma. McVeigh gathered several gallons of fuel oil, and enough ammonium nitrate fertilizer to make the deadly bomb. When mixed, the two chemicals formed a highly volatile explosive. He chose a federal building in which the media could have the best camera angles. This American born terrorist wanted everyone to witness the destruction.
There were at least two events involving the FBI, which fueled the terroristic fire within him. In 1992, a conformist, Randy Weaver, and his family had a stand-off with authorities at their Ruby Ridge, Idaho cabin. Weaver was supposedly selling guns illegally. The confrontation ended with Weaver’s son and wife being killed by federal agents.
In April 1993, federal agents had another standoff with the Branch Davidians and the head of their cult, David Koresh. On April 19, 1993, McVeigh and millions of Americans watched the fire-fight on television between Federal agents and cult members. The Davidians were charged with possessing illegal weapons. Several dozen cult members were killed, including children.
On April 19, 1995, McVeigh put his homemade bomb in a van and parked it in front of the Federal building, where the daycare was located. There were 168 people killed when the bomb destroyed the entire front of the building, 19 of which were children. There were over 680 others injured. The blast was devastating enough to damage almost 300 surrounding buildings.
McVeigh was executed on June 11, 2001, by lethal injection. His death took only minutes.
Ted Kaczynski the Unabomber
Kaczynski was the self-proclaimed Unabomber. He sent bombs in the form of letters to his former professors at the universities he graduated from, the president of United Airlines, and American Airline companies. A joint government task force, including the U.S. Postal Service, worked together to bring the Unabomber to justice. His letter bombs murdered three people and injured over 20 people. He was arrested in 1995 and received a life sentence.
His Polish parents had several children, and he was the oldest child. The Chicago-born Kaczynski suffered a severe allergic reaction to a medication as a young child and had to be isolated to recover fully. During this period, people closest to him noticed a change in his personality. The birth of his younger brother seemed to have an even more profound effect on him.
Kaczynski was another American-born terrorist, with no religious motivation for his violent and deadly attacks on civilians. He graduated from Harvard University in 1962 and completed his highly rated dissertation. In 1967, he received his doctorate from the University of Michigan. He was a mathematic’s professor at Berkeley University, who was anti-social and became alienated from his students after being unable to deliver his lectures to make sense.
The Unabomber resigned from the university in 1969. He worked in a factory and was fired by his brother after writing obscene lyrics about an ex-girlfriend. Nine years later went to live in complete isolation in his Montana cabin, which he built. He grew vegetables and hunted rabbits for food. He lived in complete solitude for 17 years. Kaczynski had no running water or electricity, and apparently, his hygiene habits were non-existent. At the time of his arrest, he was filthy and had lice though out his dirty, ungroomed hair.
The President’s Muslim Ban
The majority of the American people oppose President Trump’s executive order for several reasons. However, what disturbs many Americans is that the directive singles out a particular religion. The president frequently talks of Muslims coming into this country and committing terrorist acts. What the president and most Republicans do not seem to realize is that not all terrorists are born outside the U.S. borders.
Trump feels that banning refugees from seven Muslim countries will keep the U.S. safe. His executive order may be able to stop religiously motivated terrorism, but thousands of innocent people would have to be held back from their dreams of a better life.
According to Google, the definition of a terrorist is anyone who uses intimidation and violence exclusively against civilians with political motivation. The definition of a terrorist is someone who bullies, persecutes, menaces, threatens, intimidates, torments, or terrifies others. McVeigh and Kaczynski are only two American terrorists, and unfortunately, there are more.
By Katherine Miller
Edited by Cathy Milne
biography.com: Timothy McVeigh (1968-2001)
biography.com: Ted Kaczynski (1942-present)
History.com: Oklahoma city bombing
Top and Featured Image Courtesy of Edward Stojakovic’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons Licence
First Inline Image Courtesy of David’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Second Inline Image by Federal Beauru of Investigations Courtesy of Wikimedia – Creative Commons License