Free Essay Sample «WACO Incident»

Free Essay Sample «WACO Incident»

Davidians was a religious group based in Waco Texas headed by David Koresh who believed that he was an angel and agent of God but the Government thought him to posse's illegal firearms and explosives as well as a criminal who had abused both physically and sexually the children he had fathered with his followers (Robbins, 1997).

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Following a tip off from a cargo transporter to the government on illegal acquiring of fire arms by the group, on the day of 28th of February 1993, more than seventy agents from Alcohol ,Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) who were highly militarized, approached mount Carmel where the premises of the controversial Davidian religious group premises was located. Initially the government had requested Koresh for permission to allow them to investigate in to his alleged gun business and on that fateful day as Koresh approached the front door of the premises shots were fired and to this day no one knows who fired first. Koresh was wounded on his side but his father in law was mortally wounded as the government helicopters responded by spraying the compound with return fire leading to dead of four Davidian followers and one more member later in the day. Also four ATF agents died and 16 others wounded leading to a 51 day stand off which ended in the massacre of 76 people.

Following failed negotiations FBI suspected that Koresh was t commit a mass suicide and on the April 17 1993, fed up with the negotiations the attorney general who was newly sworn in ordered for the use of chlorobenzylidene malononitrile (CS) to help end the six week standoff. The government knew that twenty three children were in the premise and faced threats of death incase of air supply cut off. On 19th of April after phoning the building and warning of what was to happen two armored ATF vehicles punched holes in to the walls of the besieged premises and started spraying tear gas through the nozzles of the pressured non combustible carbon dioxide into the compound. All the agents involved in the process were operating under strict orders that incase the children in compounded were endangered in ant way, the procedure was to be aborted. Later in the day as agents reloaded tear gas for the second wave of assault the building suddenly caught fire and flames quickly engulfed the entire building. The outcome of the incident was death of 19 men, 23 children and 34 women most with gunshot wounds, ammunition and firearms were recovered from the incarnated building (Docherty, 2001).

The government was blamed for using excessive force in ending the 51 day standoff especially by ordering the use of CS gas which was known to be flammable despite the information that children were in the building. The indicated at Mt. Carrmel showed that ATF chose deliberately to use the dynamic entry approach instead of arresting Koresh outside the Davidian residence and that ATF agents never attempted to understand the subject of the raid and the predictability of behaviours that would result from the military assault on Davidians other wise the stand off wouldn't have ended as a massacre. In addition to that initial evidence clearly indicated that Davidians compound was full of bullets while the AFT agent vehicles did not have any bullet holes indicating that the agents opened fire indiscriminately on the Dravidian's compound. The spree of missing evidence like the critical front door which could have probably hinted an who shot first, the missing tape on the ATF trained farmyard video on the day of assault ,28th April raises suspicion that the government was hiding something from the public that would have faulted their raid on Davidians(Randall, 2009).

In conclusion the idea of the government ordering for the use of CS gas on followers of Davidians despite knowing the fact that children could probably be endangered and possibly die due to the cutoff of ventilation in the confined space of the premise with catalytic effect on causing fire was un consciousable and irrational act to be carried out by a government against the citizens its supposed to protect indiscriminately.


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