After nearly a decade, shocking, suppressed evidence emerges
By Pat Shannan
Only moments after an enormous blast blew away most of the facade and a full quarter of the eastern end of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City in 1995, the FBI and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (BATF) began to release evidence implicating two men, and two men only, who they claimed were solely responsible. The evidence later showed that Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols had confessed to the impossible.
At first, several independent investigators came forward to complain that there was an obvious cover-up. Now they call it the “ongoing cover-up of the cover-up.” And now, even the new OKC museum contradicts the official theory of what happened on April 19.
Officials in charge at the time still refuse to discuss anything other than the manufactured spin: McVeigh and Nichols, as convicted by the courts, mixed up a large batch of ammonium nitrate fuel oil (ANFO—a mild explosive used by farmers to blow out stumps) and demolished several square blocks of downtown Oklahoma City with a devastating blast that could be heard miles away.
In reality, the ANFO story was born only 10 minutes after the blast when a high-ranking BATF official by the name of Harry Everhart witnessed the blast from nearby and called the BATF office in Dallas to excitedly announce, “Someone has just blown up the federal building in Oklahoma City with a truckload of ANFO!”
Some reporters and investigators, who have looked objectively at the bombing, now argue that neither Everhart nor anyone else could have correctly deduced in such a short time exactly what caused the explosion.
According to government documents released later, Ever hart was experienced in loading large amounts of ammonium nitrate fertilizer into a vehicle for use as a terrorist truck bomb, and his presence in the midst of the second worst terrorist attack in U.S. history looms suspicious to this day.
Records indicate that this ANFO explosives expert and his associates had destroyed at least eight vehicles in “test bombing experiments” at a secret range in the New Mexico desert in the 12 months prior to the OKC bombing.
Everhart and his fellow specialists even photographed and videotaped these truck bombs as they detonated.
Far from an anti government militia member, the vehicle bomb expert was Special Agent Everhart, an employee of the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms. And, according to federal government records obtained later, Everhart had been instrumental in obtaining the government funding to perform the ANFO bombing tests.
Everhart served on the National Response Team (NRT), a group of experienced bomb and arson investigators who respond to major bombing crime scenes throughout the United States.
He also served on a secret government project in 1994 that conducted tests using ANFO and C-4 to blow up cars and vans in a classified U.S. government experiment known as “Project Dipole Might.”
According to files, reports and photographs obtained from the Department of the Treasury through a Freedom of Information Act request, the U.S. government initiated a “comprehensive ANFO and C-4 vehicle bomb testing program” about a year before the OKC bombing. Records show the project was supervised and administered by the BATF, but was actually funded through a National Security Council (NSC) directive.
The Department of Treasury has confirmed the project was initiated under President Bill Clinton’s NSC staff shortly after he took office in 1993.
The intent of the Dipole Might experiments in 1994 includes making videos and computer models to “be displayed in a courtroom to aid in the prosecution of defendants” in vehicle bomb cases, according to government documents. The exact precedent and purpose of this activity is unclear. BATF agents started blowing up vans and cars in the spring of 1994 at the White Sands Missile Range in order to collect test data for post-blast forensics computer software packages to be issued out to National Response Team personnel when they respond to truck bombings.
Why the NSC would fund such a BATF project—despite the rarity of the crime—has not been explained.
Nor has it been explained as to what specific threat-assessment information the government had when it decided to engage in such a project, just a few months before officials claimed a Ryder truck laden with ammonium nitrate fertilizer exploded in front of the Murrah building.
The only major ANFO vehicle bombing in U.S. history, prior to OKC, occurred in August 1970 at the University of Wisconsin, in Madison, Wis.
Contrary to media reports, the World Trade Center bomb of February 1993 was composed of urea nitrate, not ANFO, according to the FBI.
Despite only one known case in almost 25 years, why did Clinton’s NSC anticipate a need for detailed information regarding ANFO vehicle bomb attacks a few months prior to the Oklahoma City blast?
Treasury’s own official documents reveal the intensity of interest. In fact, a brief summary of “Project Dipole Might” is featured in BATF’s 1994 Annual Report to Congress.
There were enough clandestine characters hanging around Oklahoma City to fill a James Bond movie during the days prior to the crime.
BATF’s paid informant Carol Howe had provided information that the Murrah building was one of three potential targets.
On April 6, Cary Gagan gave U.S. marshals in Denver the information that “a federal building would be blown up in either Denver or Oklahoma City within two weeks.” He had not only personally delivered timers and blasting caps to a Middle Eastern group, but had sat in on a meeting where the blueprints of the Murrah Building were on display.
Then, 38 minutes before the blasts on April 19, the Department of Justice in Washington received an anonymous telephone call warning that the Murrah Building was about to be blown up but took no action.
After a morning of reporting that “multiple bombs” had been found in the Murrah debris—a report publicly confirmed by the Gov. Frank Keating—and that rescue operations had been halted for two hours while these unexploded bombs were removed, news people suddenly began to spin the government yarn about an ANFO bomb being responsible for the enormous damage.
One of the problems with that theory was the fact that the columns remained standing directly across the sidewalk from the truck as opposed to those that had collapsed more than 50 feet away. A retired air force brigadier general with 30 years experience compiled an irrefutable report on this subject, which showed exactly where the charges were placed inside the building.
It was so irrefutable that the prosecution refused to allow him to testify at the Denver trial as it would have destroyed any ANFO theory that the government had already sold to the American people.
On May 23, 1995, only 34 days after the explosions, the federal government stonewalled all attempts to examine the building’s remaining structure and carried out an ordered demolition, destroying and burying forever what many believed contained the evidence of many explosions.
In its issue of Oct. 11, 19, as well as other issues, the now defunct weekly Spotlight newspaper fully covered the Oklahoma City incident and conclusively proved the accuracy of reporter Shannan’s above story. The bombing was definitely a federal government operation; just why Nichols and McVeigh confessed is a mystery that forbids the closure of the case.
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